Author: robbiepoo2341 PM
(NOT WINCEST) Sam and Dean investigate a string of killers: visitors to a small town who go on killing sprees and drop dead when the sun comes up. The only thing the killers have in common? A toystore. But when Sam and Dean investigate the store, they don't come back out in the right bodies. (Note: Takes place during Season 3 before Dean goes to Hell.)Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Horror/Supernatural - Dean W. & Sam W. - Chapters: 9 - Words: 17,879 - Reviews: 8 - Favs: 7 - Follows: 9 - Updated: 12-29-12 - Published: 12-19-12 - Status: Complete - id: 8812723
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
A/N: This one's a little shorter than the others, sorry. But it gets the action started! :)
Disclaimer: I don't own any rights related to Supernatural. All rights are retained by their rightful owners.
Dean had almost finished picking the lock on the back door to the toy store. They had decided to take a look around while no one was home, just to be sure there were no more casualties or accidental deaths while they were investigating—employees tended to die when people came to visit their store at night. Much more of this, and that old lady with four teeth was never going to find anyone to work the counter. People were already starting to say this place was cursed—most of the kids Dean talked to were convinced that taking a job here was a straight ticket to an early grave. (The kid who worked here the other night was cash-strapped, though, and saving up to propose to his girl.)
It was their only lead, though, and Dean was hoping they could find more at night than they could during the day; it was their best shot. After all, most of the deaths happened at night, and the sun coming up seemed to take away whatever power this thing had.
The door opened with a creak, and Dean winced. He hoped the old lady hadn't heard that; rumor was she slept in a loft above this place, and Dean thought she definitely looked the type. He didn't want to have to explain himself to an old lady with a shotgun. (This whole town was filled with rednecks and rifles.)
But he didn't hear anyone coming down the stairs, so he pushed the door open a little further and motioned for Sam to follow him in. They kept their flashlights out, wandering the aisles.
"Look for wooden things first?" Sam suggested. "Anything that could have left behind the carving leftovers."
Dean frowned. A lot of these toys were old-fashioned. Wooden rocking horses, tin soldiers, the stuff out of old Christmas movies or Hallmark specials. "Dude," he said, emphatically gesturing at the carved toys on the third aisle. Sam just shrugged, and Dean rolled his eyes.
"Split up?" Sam asked. Dean was trying to let Sam call the shots on more missions, and he'd told Sam to take point on this investigation, since Dean wouldn't be around much longer to help.
Dean frowned again. He didn't like that idea, but he knew they would cover more ground. "Don't get lost," he told Sam—his way of reminding his kid brother not to get himself in more trouble than he usually did. "I'll start at the back and meet you in the middle."
Sam nodded, and Dean took off with his flashlight.
But once he got to the back, he immediately wished he hadn't picked this spot. The whole aisle was lined with wooden puppets, with eyes that looked almost human. He took a minute to compose himself. "Jeez," he whispered. He forced himself forward. "Nothing creepy about this, no sir," he muttered to himself.
He heard something clatter behind him and spun around, his gun raised. But no, there was nothing there. He frowned and kept his hand on the trigger; in his experience, unexplained noises were usually at the root of the problem.
He kept his eyes on the place the noise seemed to be coming from, his gun trained carefully. Slowly, carefully, he kept backing down the aisle. He backed right into one of the shelves and knocked a couple puppets over. He clicked his tongue in annoyance, then bent down to put them back—and stopped.
He held the puppet in his hands for just a second longer, then tucked it under his arm and made a dash for it. He ignored the fact that it looked like all the puppets turned to stare at him; he had to find Sammy.
He ran into his giant of a brother down the fourth aisle—literally. They collided, and Dean dropped the puppet he was holding. He reached down to scoop it up again while Sam called him names that Dean was proud to have taught that saint. "What'd you do that for?" Sam asked.
Dean just held up the puppet. "Dude," he said. "Who does this look like?"
Sam stared at it for a while, frowned, but then the recognition crossed his face. His frown deepened, and he reached into his pocket for the picture of their mystery killer. He unfolded it and held it up next to the puppet for comparison.
"Weird," Sam said.
The puppet looked exactly like their mystery girl, right down to the ponytail, the freckles, the clothes, and the mole underneath her chin. "I thought these people said they had never seen our killer before," Dean said.
"She just pulled off the side of the road for directions, Dean. She'd never been here before." Sam just kept shaking his head. This was weird, even for them. It wasn't like a voodoo doll, either—it was a full on puppet.
"This was hand-carved," Dean pointed out.
"Which probably explains the wood carvings," Sam said. He kept staring at the puppet and then back at the picture like he couldn't quite wrap his brain around it.
"So," Dean said slowly, "this thing takes over a person and makes them into a puppet—like, a real puppet, not just a meat puppet like the demons do." He frowned. "I don't think I've heard of a monster like that before."
"Me neither," Sam said. He tucked the picture back into his pocket.
"Feels like some serious hoodoo to me," Dean muttered. He put the puppet down on the nearest shelf and eyed it carefully while he reached for his pistol.
"No spell I've ever heard of, though," Sam said.
Dean slapped his brother on the back. "Well, sounds like we need some more research. That's your thing, right?" (Sam just glared at him.) He turned back for the puppet, intending to put it back, but it was gone.
Dean could already feel his body tensing, ready for the fight, when he turned to his brother. "Dude," he said. "Where's the puppet go?"
Sam turned to the shelf, and his eyes widened. He crouched down. "Maybe it fell over?"
Dean shook his head. Something had taken the puppet—or maybe it had walked away on its own. He could feel the cigarette lighter in his jacket pocket; it was a reliable defense against wooden things and would probably be a better defense against wooden toys than bullets.
The whole place got suddenly colder, and the emergency light in the back of the store flickered with the familiar whine of interrupted electricity. But still the EMF was not making a sound; it just sat in Dean's pocket, taking up valuable space—so it wasn't a ghost. When they came back, Dean was going to bring lighter fluid and matches instead of rock salt and holy water. (And what were they supposed to think? Peoples' bodies being hijacked? It was very ghost or demon behavior.)
Dean was just about to suggest that they book it out of there and come back when they had a better idea of what they were fighting when he heard a sound that stopped him cold: the clattering of wood against wood, like old wind chimes.
He saw something scuttling down on the floor, and he fired at it, not really caring that he would probably wake up the old lady. If she was the one working her hoodoo, he didn't much care about her beauty sleep. (They were definitely going to have a long talk with her when all this was over.)
Whatever it was scuttled away, and he could hear Sam beside him, but he did not tear his eyes away from his end of the aisle.
He felt a little hand on his ankle, and for how small the hand was, he was surprised at the strength that went into flipping him on his back. He grunted when his head hit the floor, and when it lolled to one side, he saw it: the face grinning back at him with very human eyes.
He had only seen it for a second before it disappeared, but he knew now what the wood was on the floor—the puppet had claw marks down his face. There had been bits of wood in the keys they found on their mystery killer, and he was willing to bet she'd fought this very puppet.
And she'd done a much better job fending it off, apparently. Dean struggled to get back to his feet—with Sam's help—but then there was more scuttling around them. The thing wouldn't stay still long enough for Dean to get a decent shot at it.
"Maybe we should come back during regular visiting hours?" Sam asked.
"Shut up, Sam." Dean was trying to spot the puppet through the cracks in between the shelves on the aisle. He was looked down at a kid's eye level, but he hadn't looked up at the top shelves.
Bam. There was a child-size puppet sitting on Sam's chest, and Sam had fallen with such force that he knocked Dean over, too.
Dean's head hurt. He'd run into one of those steel shelves, and he was seeing stars. But he forced himself to his feet. There was an evil puppet on his brother; he could think about his head later. He could feel warm blood dripping down his neck, but he'd get that fixed later.
He grabbed the thing by its strings—strings that it was holding in its hand, but not all of the strings. With a rough tug, he managed to get it off Sam, then offered his brother a hand off. "Dude, you got taken down by a kid's toy."
They heard the clattering around the corner again, but this time Dean was prepared. He reached into his pocket for his lighter and kept the flame close. "Come and get it," he muttered under his breath.
The thing must have heard him. It popped around the corner, and Dean took a shot at it. The shot missed—that little puppet was faster than Dean had expected—and now there was some weird magic going down. The wooden controls that held its strings were glowing yellow, and Dean could feel something inside him being drawn to that glow.
He blinked, shaking his head, trying not to give in.
He heard Sam fall to the ground with a thunderous crash—the kid was too big to do anything quietly—and Dean knew this was his last chance. He felt the life going out of him, and he threw his lighter, hoping it would hit the puppet and torch the sucker—and he fired one last shot at the control thingy before he passed out.