Author: T1gerCat PM
During a hunt Sam Winchester gets a vision of their life-long nemesis hunting the daughter of an old friend of his father. Will they make it in time to save her? Can vampires even be possessed?Rated: Fiction K - English - Romance/Supernatural - Dean W. & Bella - Chapters: 12 - Words: 32,657 - Reviews: 71 - Favs: 124 - Follows: 67 - Updated: 08-29-10 - Published: 07-16-10 - Status: Complete - id: 6146751
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Chapter 11 : Snowball's Chance in Hell
A/N: Due to a quick mature scene the rating is M just for this chapter
It took hours to comb through all the records, but finally Bella and Sam were back in Dean's room, all of them discussing the next step to be taken. Eventually, they decided that the best thing to do would be to visit each family individually, and hope that the Demon had left some kind of sign in advance at each place. Flickering lights, deaths of neighborhood pets, something.
Bella didn't hold out much hope, but since she wasn't exactly experienced in this sort of thing, she kept her own counsel. Maybe there were subtle signs that Sam and John would recognize. John didn't remember any oddities occurring before the fire that had claimed Mary Winchester and started them down this road, but maybe there had been signs and he hadn't noticed them at the time, not without someone there to call his attention to them.
Dean was outwardly supportive of what his father and brother were doing, but inwardly he was fuming. He'd give anything to be in Sam's position, to be able to blow the Demon a new asshole with the Colt. But he wasn't even close to being healed up enough to do that.
John insisted this time that he be the one to do the legwork, checking half the twenty-two families on the list, so Bella and Dean were finally left alone together again, while he and Sam canvassed the list of potential Demon targets.
Dean noticed the worried expression on her face.
"I'm OK, Bells."
He reached over and laced his fingers through hers.
"I'm pissed off that I'm going to be ring-side for the big battle, but…"
He shrugged but looked very disappointed. Bella sympathized, but after everything she'd seen, she also felt relieved. The thought of Dean dying frightened her badly, and although she didn't want Sam or John to be put at risk either, there was still that part of her that thought better them than Dean….
He was still watching her, more intensely than before. She wondered if he was becoming psychic like his brother, and could read her guilty thoughts.
"What?" she asked.
Dean shook his head.
"Nothing. Just that you've been surprising me lately. This isn't the kind of life that many people can jump into feet-first, but you picked up that gun without hesitation and tried to defend us back there. And then stepping in to do Dad's research for him. I really admire you for it all." Polar opposite of Cassie, that's for sure.
Bella was pleased. "Does this mean you didn't admire me before?" she joked.
"Oh, I did," he assured her. "Dating a vampire and being the parent in the mother-daughter relationship, those are both admirable qualities. But….this is different."
He hoped she realized he was being serious. That it was no small feat, going from high school student to amateur hunter in mere hours. Especially when she could just have easily run screaming in the other direction. Bella nodded, but she also remembered the earlier doubts brought on by her nightmare.
"Look, Dean," she said, gazing down at his hand, still wrapped around hers. "What the Demon said back in the cabin, about me and Edward…it's not true. You're not a replacement for him."
Dean shook his head. Figured she'd be concerned about that.
"I know, Bells. Don't worry about it. Demons lie all the time. Yeah, sometimes they'll tell the truth, if they think it'll screw you up, but…" He squeezed her hand gently. "I know this isn't one of those times."
There was no way Dean could see her putting up with all this supernatural crap, not if she really preferred her asshole of a sparkly vamp ex to him. Dean decided he had a pretty good way to reassure her, in fact. He tugged on her arm, drawing her down until he could kiss her. It started off chaste, but then his tongue slid wetly along her lower lip, and with a groan she gave in, letting him inside her. He was almost startled by how quickly she surrendered.
His fingers had soon knotted themselves in her hair, so when he broke the kiss and moved his warm mouth lower, pressing gentle kisses along her throat, it wasn't easy for her to pull away.
"Dean, we shouldn't-"she protested breathlessly. "You're hurt!"
"Screw that," he said, muffled, against her neck. "S'gonna take more than a damned demon to keep me from touching you. Besides, haven't you always wanted to do it in a hospital bed?"
He needed to do something, to take his mind off the fact he was stuck in this fucking hospital bed when he should have been out there. May as well do something fun.
"Someone could come in and catch us,"
she protested, but she was already weakening. After everything that had happened to her lately, this was the one constant, the one thing that was keeping her grounded. Him. And she'd come so close to losing him.
"So, get under the covers with me," he coaxed mischievously. "Anyone comes in, we'll pretend you're….tired and taking a nap?"
"That's so lame, Dean," she said, but when he held the covers back, she shook her head and slid under the sheets beside him.
"I think the word you're looking for is suave,"
he teased. He drew her closer, kissed her again.
Bella yawned and glared at the brown sludge that the vending machine had given her. Even PPTH's worst cafeteria had better coffee than this. She drank a few experimental gulps anyways, grimacing at the taste. Familiar voices were talking behind her, and she turned to see that John and Sam were back.
"Hey," Sam said, spotting her and coming over. "How's he doing?"
"Fine," Bella said, hoping she wasn't blushing. "He even feels well enough to flirt with the nurses again," she joked.
Chuckling, Sam nodded and headed off in the direction of Dean's room. John came up to her next, slowed by his crutches.
"Bella, do you have a second?"
She paused, wondering what he wanted. She found herself tensing, remembering the last time she'd been alone with this man. Except, it hadn't really been this man.
"Look, I just wanted to say, I'm sorry. It wasn't me, of course, not since we rescued you….but I still wanted to say sorry. And to thank you for everything you've done to help Dean, help us. Like insisting we bring him here. He might've died if you hadn't."
John Winchester was obviously uncomfortable, not making eye contact for very long with her, shifting a little from leg to crippled leg, but he was obviously sincere. So she smiled at him.
"I accept, Mr. Win-John," she corrected herself.
He smiled back at her and nodded, then, all business, and started hobbling towards Dean's room. Almost unwillingly, Bella found herself realizing just how handsome her boyfriend's father was. Jesus. What was wrong with her? Is that what sex does to people? She cut the thoughts off and followed after him to Dean's room, wondering for the first time whether the two of them had been successful in locating the family in question.
"We found the family. Or rather, Sammy did,"
John said, wincing a little as he lowered himself into the chair by Dean's bed. The same one she'd been sitting in before Dean had seduced her into joining him in the bed, she noticed with a blush.
Dean asked, eyes going back and forth between his brother and his father. His expression was grave, focused. No joking around or romance now.
"One of my visions," Sam answered, massaging his temple with his fingers, almost unconsciously. "Sixth house I tried, I was standing outside and had a vision. The Demon in a nursery, standing over the crib. And then the mother comes in and gets pinned to the ceiling and cut and burned….just like Mom." Sam paused, swallowing convulsively, and then went on: "Then I saw the mother, the same one, walking up the street, and I talked to her and found out her daughter's six-month birthday is tonight."
Dean's eyes widened. "Tonight? Oh, fuck."
"Doesn't matter," John said, and already he was back in battle-mode. Calm and distant, focused on the war to come. Bella almost envied him. "It's time to decide the best way to take the Demon down," he continued. "We're all out of time."
Waiting in that sterile hospital room to find out what had happened, had been as bad as any torture. This could very well have been their last battle against the Demon, and Dean not only couldn't participate, but he couldn't even watch it go down. He could only wait, which was far worse than being pinned to a wall and cut to pieces by the Big Badass, in a way. If Bella hadn't been there to talk him down, to distract him, Dean didn't know what he would've done.
But when Sam and John returned to Dean's room, both of them stepping carefully over the line of salt Bella had laid there earlier, he knew just by looking at them that it was bad. That it hadn't worked.
"We didn't get it, did we?"
Dean asked. On the chair next to the bed, Bella sat up straighter, her expression one of worry and disappointment. Brooding, Dad slumped into the room's other chair and didn't answer, as Sam shook his head. Voice dull with fatigue and defeat, Sam started to tell them the story
It was uncomfortable, sitting in the car like this with Dad. It wasn't just the knowledge that they were about to face the monster, the Demon that had destroyed their family, and maybe defeat it for good. Kill or be killed.
It was also that he just didn't know what to say to Dad. Every time they opened their mouths around each other, it seemed, the fighting started. And this time Dean wasn't here to play mediator. This really wasn't how Sam had pictured this whole thing ending. He'd always figured Dad would kill the thing alone. Or that Dean and Sam, working together, would take the yellow-eyed bastard down.
Never in a million years had he expected that he'd have to team up with Dad on this, without Dean. And that Dad would probably be of minimal help when it came right down to the big moment. Sam shifted restlessly. The silence was uncomfortable, oppressive, and finally, Sam couldn't stand it.
"This feels strange."
"Yeah," Dad answered quietly, eyes meeting Sam's. "Been waiting for this for a long time, and now it's finally here."
"Doesn't seem real," Sam added.
John nodded slowly.
"But it is. And that means we've got to do our job. That we can't let it get into our heads."
Despite himself, despite his own doubts that he was up to this, Sam felt irritated with Dad. What did Dad think he'd been doing for the last year? He wasn't some coddled college kid who'd never held a gun in his life….With an effort, he calmed himself.
"This isn't like always, Dad. This isn't like our usual jobs."
Another slow nod.
"I know." Dad reached out, laying a hand on Sam's shoulder and squeezing lightly.
Silence fell again, as Sam didn't know what to say. He'd already said goodbye to Dean – or tried to, Dean hadn't been willing to hear it, had insisted that 'Nobody's dying today, not us, not that family, no one except the Big Badass' – and thanked him, and now it felt like he should say something along those lines to Dad.
Just in case.
"Look, Dad…" Sam tried, clearing his throat. "I know it can't have been easy, raising us like that-"
"You don't need to say it, Sam. I know." Dad said, smiling gently.
Sam shook his head and went on anyways.
"I just wanted to say thank you. And that I know you tried to do the best you could."
Dad nodded. "I did. Tried, anyways. But let's not go writing our eulogies until we have to, OK Sam?"
Sam nodded again, looking out the side window towards the house. Dean wasn't the only one who sometimes got uncomfortable with 'chick flick' moments, though Sam would never admit as much to Dean. Sam had a reputation to uphold, after all.
Still, the silence wanted to be filled, so Sam scrambled around for something else to say. He suddenly remembered what the Demon had said to him back in the cabin, while wearing Dad's body.
"Hey Dad? You know, the Demon, it said it had plans for me, and all the children out there like me. D'you have any idea what it meant by that?"
Dad glanced over at him, an unreadable expression on his face. "No, I don't-" Dad started to say.
There was a sudden rush of wind, moaning loudly in the trees, and the lights in the house across the way started to flicker, gutter. The two of them looked at each other, both of them knowing exactly what that meant.
"It's time, Sammy," Dad said.
From then on, it was as if everything was coming in jump-cuts. Him and Dad at the door, Sam picking the lock while Dad cocked the Colt.
The husband attacked them in the living room with a bat, and Sam had to dive in and pin the guy against the wall before he brained Dad. Mr. Holt was yelling, understandably panicked. The guy didn't know that the real evil was about to strike upstairs. Sam did his best to calm him, but it wasn't working.
Holt yelled for his wife to go get the baby, over Sam's objections, and that was when the darkness coiled down over Sam's vision. In the core of that darkness was the nursery, and Monica racing in to see the shadowy figure hovering over Rosie's crib.
His eyesight cleared in time to hear Monica's scream. Dad shoved the Colt at him, and Sam didn't let himself stop and think. There was no time for that. Dad couldn't run, wouldn't be able to get upstairs fast enough. Sam could.
Sam stumbled up the stairs, reaching the nursery an eternity later. He burst in, briefly registering that Monica was pressed to the upper wall, but most of his focus was on the figure by the crib. It locked eyes with him, and suddenly Sam could see nothing but orange flames. Was this what Hell looked like?
On pure reflex, Sam raised the Colt, but it felt like his arm was moving through sludge.
The Demon was gone, dissolved into smoke between one eyeblink and the next, but it was too late for Sam to stop his finger. He fired, helpless to stop himself, and the bullet went harmlessly, uselessly, into the wall.
Monica fell to the floor, sobbing, and Sam tried to scan the room for their enemy and help her to her feet at the same time. It still had to be there, it had to be-
But there was nothing there. Monica ran to the crib to get Rosie, while Sam stood there uncertainly. Did he manage to hit it after all? Was it dead?
Monica backed away from the crib, then turned towards Sam.
"What was that? What just happened?"
But Sam was spared from answering, because just then the crib went up in flames, angry orange gouts that rushed up to meet the ceiling and started to engulf the floor around the crib, all in seconds. Sam realized that not only was the Demon not dead, but that they had to get out of there. He couldn't risk the Colt's last – last, goddamn it – bullet on trying to hit an invisible foe.
He got Monica and Rosie out of the room and out of the house as fast as possible. Dad and Monica's husband were on the lawn waiting for them. "Get away from my family!" the man yelled, still not clued in.
"No, Charlie!" Monica insisted. "They saved us."
Clutching onto her husband and baby for dear life, she turned and looked back over her shoulder at Sam.
"Thank you. Thank you so much."
Sam nodded, but, as if drawn by a magnet, he turned to look back at the house, at the window of the nursery.
It was still there. Still in the house. It stood at the window, wreathed in flames, and watched them.
Dad limped up beside him, shock written all over his face.
Sam had seen that expression on Dad's face before. It was the same one Dad had worn back in the cabin, when Sam hadn't been able to shoot his own father. Not even to kill the Demon.
"I missed," Sam admitted.
"You what?" Dad hissed. "For God's sake, Sammy."
"I shot at it, but it's fast, Dad," Sam protested, but it sounded weak to him. He'd failed Dad twice, hadn't he?
"Please tell me there's still a bullet left," Dad growled.
Dad grabbed the gun from Sam's hand, and made a move to get into the inferno that was the house.
"No, Dad!" Sam raced after him, grabbing him by the arm. Starting to get angry himself.
"It's still in there," Dad said through gritted teeth. "And if you haven't the balls to do it Sammy, then by God-"
Sam was angry, but he pushed it aside. Dad was being suicidal again, and though part of Sam was tempted to just let him do it, just let all this be over, he knew he wouldn't do that. Letting Dad go back into the house would be no different than shooting his father while he'd been possessed, and Sam wasn't prepared to sacrifice his father. No matter how annoying or accusatory Dad could , Dean would never forgive him if he let Dad do something so stupid. If Sam stood by and let their family unit be broken Sam took an even firmer grip of his father's arm.
"No, Dad," he insisted calmly.
"Let me go! This has to be done!" Dad snarled, trying to yank free of Sam's grip.
"No! It's suicide, Dad! Just like last time."
"I. Don't. Care." Dad spat, emphasizing every word.
"Yeah? Well I do. And so does Dean. Nothing's worth getting yourself killed. Not even this. Not even avenging Mom." Sam insisted stubbornly. He wasn't letting go.
Dad finally stopped struggling to get free, but Sam still didn't let go, in case it was a ruse. A sound came from above them then, a laugh as dark and evil as any Sam had ever heard. They both looked up at the nursery again, and for a brief moment, the Demon was still visible at the window.
John lift his hands towards the window fast and fired a single shot.
Sam finished the tale, then just sat there looking at the floor. Dean glanced over at Dad, but Dad was also looking at the floor, the walls, the ceiling, anywhere but at Sam.
"Dad," Dean said warningly, "Let it go."
The last thing he needed was Sammy and Dad at each other's throats. Again.
"So Sammy missed. We're fighting a pretty powerful monster here. Did you really think this would be easy, Dad?"
For a moment, Dad met Dean's gaze directly, and there was such disappointment and frustration in his eyes that Dean was frankly a little frightened. 'Who are you, and what have you done with my father', he wanted to ask. He'd always known Dad was 'driven', but recent events had shown that there was such a thing as too driven.
"No, but I did think both of you would be willing to do what needed to be done," Dad rasped. "And that includes letting me decide when and where to lay down my life, if that means this thing will finally die."
Bella piped up, her own voice hard, and Dean was glad to hear her say it. He agreed, he just didn't dare say it out loud to Dad. John's eyes shifted to glare at her, the uninvited guest.
"With all due respect, Miss, you're pretty new to all of this, you don't know what the stakes are," he retorted, but he was already losing steam.
"Give me a break, John," Bella continued, fire in her eyes now, and Dean had to hide a smirk behind his hand. "I don't care what this Demon thing did to your family. It's not worth you losing your life. Nothing's worth that."
She was looking over at Dean for confirmation as she finished, and he nodded in total agreement. Sam was nodding, too.
A united front, against Dad. Three against one, and Dean hoped this would convince him.
"Dad, we're all still alive," Dean pointed out. "The Demon probably wasn't counting on that. And we've still got one bullet left. We can pick up the Demon's trail again, I know we can. We will, somehow."
Dad said nothing, just slumped silently, angrily, in his chair Then suddenly he fhashed a smile that Dean hadn't seen since the night his mother died. Sam looked exasperated and angry and even – in true Sam fashion – a bit guilty for a moment and then let loose a big smile just like John's.
"Who said I missed? John said
Silence fell in the room as Bella and Dean were looking from John to Sam to John again
"Are you saying..."
"You did it?" Dean finished for her
At dad's nod and Sam's declaration
Dean sighed and started laughing. All three Winchesters had the same big grin and happiness shone in their eyes. Dean turned to Bella, smiled and wrapped his fingers around hers.
They were free to go back to their lives. The only question was - could they?