Take a breath
Hold it in
Start a fight
You won't win
Had enough
Let's begin
Nevermind
I don't care

All in all
You're no good
You don't cry
Like you should
Let it go
If you could
When love dies in the end

So I'll find what lies beneath
Your sick twisted smile
As I lie underneath
Your cold jaded eyes
Now you turn the tide on me
'Cause you're so unkind
I will always be here
For the rest of my life


HEAVEN & HELL

~ Continued from previous chapter ~


Beth's POV

"You want Anna?" Sam asked incredulously, looking at Cas. "Why?"

"Out of the way," Uriel said, ignoring the question.

"Whoa, whoa, whoa. Okay, I know she's wiretapping your angel chats or whatever, but it's no reason to gank her," Dean said, frowning at Uriel.

"Don't worry," Uriel said with a sick, twisted smile. "I'll kill her gentle."

"You're some heartless sons of bitches, you know that?" Dean said, looking straight at Cas.

"As a matter of fact, we are," Cas said, and while he was looking at Dean and speaking to out loud I heard his voice echo in my head. Give us the girl Beth, and no one else has to get hurt. I flinched at the tone, not liking it at all, they were really serious.

"And?" Sam said. "Anna's an innocent girl."

Cas looked from Sam to Dean, shaking his head. "She is far from innocent," he said in an unsettling tone.

I took a step back, pushing Anna back further into the room we were hiding in and thinking about our options.

"If things get really rough, call me." Ezekiel's words from yesterday echoed in my head and I instantly knew what I had to do. I focused on the light that was Ezekiel, and hoped to God that Cas wasn't going to be able to overhear this. When I felt I had made a connection, just like Cas had been teaching me to do with him, I called out.

"Ezekiel, I need you!"

"What's that supposed to mean?" Sam asked, oblivious to the extra conversations that were silently going on around him.

"It means she's worse than this abomination you've been screwing," Uriel said, sneering at Sam and then Ruby. "Now give us the girl."

"Sorry. Get yourself another one. Try JDate," Dean said, stubborn to the very end.

I felt a rush of wind enter the room and spun around to see the dark haired, dark eyed visage of Ezekiel standing between Anna and myself. To her credit, Anna didn't shriek, and then I realised that Ezekiel seemed to be speaking to her telepathically. He was looking at her with a sadness that was reserved for old friends, or lovers, who had been parted by the sands of time. I cleared my throat and Ezekiel turned to look at me.

"Talk here," Ezekiel's voice echoed in my head.

"But Cas…"

"Can't hear us, I've isolated just the two of us." Ezekiel said. "What's happening?"

"They're here to kill Anna, if we don't get her out of here, or stop it somehow, they're going to hurt Dean and Sam, and probably me." I said to him and he nodded, sighing softly.

"This is not how I wanted things to go down. I can't take Anna out of here without alerting them to my involvement, but I can do the next best thing."

"What?"

"Do you have a knife?" He asked and I nodded, pulling my silver knife out of my boot.

"You'll need blood," he instructed. "Enough to draw a sigil."

"Beth, what are you doing?" Anna asked quietly and I laid a finger across my lips to silence her.

"It's going to be okay," I said and she nodded.

"Who's gonna stop us? You two?" Uriel's voice floated into the room from beyond and I looked worriedly at the door. "Or this demon whore?"

There was the sound of glass smashing as someone hit the wall in the other room and I cursed, instinctively heading for the door. Ezekiel grabbed my arm and shook his head.

"This is the only way. They cannot know I am here." He said. There was the sound of a scuffle going on and I heard Ruby call out with pain and fear, and then I heard Dean grunt as he took a few punches, getting in on the action. Ezekiel took the knife from me and drew it across my wrist, I hissed at the cut and looked down at the blood starting to trickle down my arm, he'd made the cut deep enough to bleed readily, but it was unlikely to need stitches.

"Quickly, draw this," he said and he flashed an image of a sigil into my head. I started drawing it instantly on the mirror in the room.

"What does it do?" I asked, glancing at him as I came to the end.

"Cas, stop… please," I heard Sam say to the angel, and then there was nothing further from Sam.

"I'm coming for the girl Beth, don't get in my way," Cas's voice sounded in my head along with Ezekiel's and I started to feel slightly schizophrenic.

"You'll see." Ezekiel said. "It's not how I wanted it to happen, but we have no choice, keep Anna safe."

"What about you?" I asked Ezekiel, frowning at him as I held my hand, dripping with blood, over the top of the sigil.

"I've been waiting for this," Uriel's voice cut through the simple sounds of Dean fighting and I jumped, glancing back at the door.

"Do it now, or Dean is lost," Ezekiel said. I nodded, finishing the sigil. "Your hand to the middle." He flashed me an image of me placing my hand flat against the mirror. "Remember I wasn't here, keep her safe. Oh this is going to hurt…" He said and I hesitated for just one moment before hitting the centre of the sigil with my palm.

There was a blinding white light that suddenly engulfed Ezekiel and then it was gone, along with the angel. I stood panting, looking at the space where Ezekiel had been and then realising that all noise had stopped in the other room.


Dean's POV

"What the…" I muttered, looking around as both Uriel and Cas disappeared in a flash of light. Ruby was next to me on the ground where Uriel had just been about to send me back to Hell, and I helped her rise to her feet. I glanced down at Sam who Cas had tapped on the forehead, rendering unconscious. That had been a dirty trick and certainly not fair. I saw his eyes flutter a little and as Ruby crouched in front of him, he started to stir.

"Dean!" Anna's voice called out and I moved quickly for the back room, almost running into Anna as she opened the door from the other side. I looked past her and saw Beth sitting in a chair, her arm was bleeding profusely and she was breathing a little heavily.

"Beth! Are you okay?" I asked, grabbing at her and she sighed with relief, looking up at me with those big brown eyes.

"Yeah, yeah I'm fine. Are they gone?" Beth asked and I nodded, taking a cloth and wrapping it around her arm to stem the bleeding.

"Did you kill them?" I asked, frowning at the blood.

"No. I uh, I think I sent them away, far away," Beth said, shaking her head.

"You want to tell me how?" I asked. Beth nodded and pointed toward a sigil she'd drawn on the mirror over the table.

"That just…uh… popped into my head," she said. "I don't know why, I must have seen it in a book or something." She looked over at Ruby as she said that and I knew she was lying as she tucked a strand of hair behind her right ear: her tell, though she wasn't usually so sloppy about it. She looked up at me, biting her lip and I knew she'd wanted me to see it. I nodded, looking deeply into her eyes and then kissed her forehead.

"Later," I whispered and she nodded.

"It's an angel banishing sigil," Anna volunteered out of the blue and I raised an eyebrow.

"How do you know that?" I asked and she shrugged.

"I don't know, I just do."

I sighed, looking over at her and then back at Sam and Ruby. The night had certainly gotten livelier.

"Stay here," I said to Beth, placing her hand over the make-shift bandage to keep up the pressure while I inclined my head to Sam. "I'm just gonna get the first aid kit from the car."

Beth nodded and closed her eyes, deliberately slowing her breathing. "It shouldn't need stitches," she said. I wasn't so sure, either way we were going to need fresh bandages.

Sam followed me out into the main room of the cabin as I left. "So, what do you think?" I asked, looking back at him and pausing on my way to the car.

"I think Anna's getting more interesting by the second," he answered. "How does she know about sigils? Beth sure, she's always reading this stuff, but it doesn't seem like required reading on a journalism major."

"Yeah, I agree. And what did they mean by 'she's not innocent'?" That particular statement had been troubling me.

"It seems like they want her bad, and they're not likely to let up until they get their way." Sam said, echoing the thoughts that I had been having.

"Yeah, something's going on with her," I said, thinking about our options. "See what you can find out," I said, heading for the door.

"What are you gonna do?" Sam asked and I looked back with a cheeky grin.

"Beth might have sent the angels to the outfield, but, sooner or later, they're gonna be back. We got to get ourselves safe, now." I replied, and I had just the place in mind.


Bobby's House
Sioux Falls, South Dakota

Beth's POV

It had been months since we'd been back to South Dakota, I found myself wishing it was under more pleasant circumstances, like Christmas. Christmas was always fun here, and a tradition for us – we would all land in Bobby's living room, drink egg nog, decorate the house, and then I'd drag everyone to midnight mass. I found myself feeling sad at the thought that last year I'd been dancing with Dean in the spare room to the soulful strains of Bing Crosby, under a thousand Christmas lights, and thinking I might never get another Christmas with him. It was a dream come true that he was here with me now - we were a month out from celebrating Christmas together again – so long as we survived the latest thing we'd been dumped in.

Dean wandered past me carrying a couple of bottles of holy water and he was humming I'll be home for Christmas so I knew he was thinking along the same lines. He stopped long enough to flash me a smile before moving to place the bottles on the shelves in the room we were in.

I looked around and shook my head once more at the ingenuity of Bobby. On a weekend off he'd created the perfect panic room. Anna was sitting in a chair and I looked over at her.

"Iron walls drenched in salt. Demons can't even touch this place," I said to her and there was a snort from the doorway.

"Which I find racist, by the way," Ruby said, standing on the other side of a devil's trap drawn just outside the door, her armed crossed angrily over her chest.

"Write your congressman," Dean quipped back at her with a chuckle.

Ruby scowled and shook her head, then tossed him three items. "Here."

Dean looked at what was in his hands and raised an eyebrow before asking, "Hex bags?"

"Extra-crunchy," Ruby said with a nod. "They'll hide us from angels, demons, all comers."

With a surprised look Dean nodded his approval. "Thanks Ruby." He walked over and handed one to Anna, saying, "Don't lose this." Tossing one over to me as I sat down on the couch, Dean started to look over the rest of the panic room. "So Anna, what's playing on angel radio? Anything useful?"

"It's quiet. Dead silence," Anna said.

"Yeah, same," I said with a nod when Dean looked questioningly at me. Ezekiel had said a vessel's connection could be blocked if needed, but I'd never really experienced that before, having gotten used to the murmur of voices in the back of my mind, like white noise if I concentrated hard enough. Now when I focused on my connection to the angels it was deathly quiet and unnerving.

"Good. That's not troubling at all," Dean said, swallowing hard.

"We're in trouble, huh?" Anna asked, looking over at us. "You guys are scared?"

Dean exchanged a look with me and then glanced over at Ruby who was hovering in the doorway and trying not to look nervous.

"Nah," Dean said with a reassuring smile, but anyone who knew him could tell that was a lie.

"Hey, Dean!" Sam's voice echoed down the stairs from the kitchen and Dean looked over at me, indicating with a nod of his head that I should follow him.

"Just stay here, okay?" He said to Anna and she nodded. Dean led the way out of the panic room and paused next to Ruby, saying, "Keep an eye on her."

Upstairs, Sam was waiting for us in the kitchen and looked relieved when we joined him.

"How's the car?" Dean asked and I chuckled at the question. He'd been stressing big time since we'd had to leave the Impala at the motel, and had finally decided to risk sending Sam to collect her.

"I got her, she's fine," Sam said. "Where's Bobby?"

"Uh, the Dominican," I answered with a grin. "He said we break anything, we buy it."

"He's working a job?" Sam asked with a raised eyebrow.

"God, I hope so," Dean said. "Otherwise, he's at hedonism in a banana hammock and a trucker cap." I snorted and shook my head, only Dean would think of something like that.

"Now that's seared in my brain," Sam complained, shaking his head with a smile.

"All right, what did you find on Anna?" Dean asked, glancing behind us at the door to the basement, making sure we were alone.

"Uh, not much," Sam said, pulling out a file and opening it, laying it out on the desk. "Her parents were, uh, Rich and Amy Milton – a church deacon and a housewife," he said. I looked over his shoulder at a photo of Anna, much younger, smiling back at us.

"Riveting," Dean said sarcastically.

"Yeah. But there is something here in the report. Turns out this latest psych episode wasn't her first," Sam said, glancing up at us.

"No?" I asked curiously, leaning in to read some of the type on the page.

"When she was two and a half, she'd get hysterical any time her dad got close. She was convinced that he wasn't her real daddy," Sam continued. Dean chuckled and looked up at us with a grin.

"Who was? The plumber, hmm? A little snaking the pipes?" He waved his hand in the air like a little kid imitating a snake, or maybe a tadpole, swimming through air. I smiled and shook my head at his child like humour, it was rudimentary, but it was also the Dean I'd fallen in love with so many years ago. Now that we were older his humour didn't come out as much as it used to, and it was always a good sign when it did, it meant his heart was feeling a little lighter.

Sam rolled his eyes and looked at his brother. "Dude, you're confusing reality with porn again," he said causing Dean's face to fall.

"Look, Anna didn't say," Sam continued. "She just kept repeating that this real father of hers was mad. Very mad – like wanted-to-kill-her mad."

"That's kind of heavy for a two year old," I commented.

Sam nodded and then shrugged before saying, "Well, she saw a kid's shrink, got better, and grew up normal."

"Until now," Dean pointed out. "So, what's she hiding?"

"Why don't you just ask me to my face?" Anna asked, startling us out of our conversation. I kicked myself, the girl was light on her feet I'd give her that, normally we would have heard someone coming up the stairs.

Dean scowled at Ruby who was standing, equally as silent, next to the red-head. "Nice job watching her."

"I'm watching her," Ruby said, gesturing to the girl standing next to her.

"No, you're right, Anna," Sam said, instantly placating with his puppy eye look. "Is there anything you want to tell us?"

"About what?" Anna asked, crossing her arms.

"The angels said you were guilty of something. Why would they say that?" Sam asked.

"You tell me," Anna snarked back at him. "Tell me why my life has been levelled… why my parents are dead! I don't know. I swear. I would give anything to know."

I glanced over at her as she said that, getting an idea. "Okay," I said, interrupting them. "Then let's find out," I said, raising my eyebrow.

"How?" Anna asked, her wide eyes looking at me curiously.

I turned to Dean who was looking at me quizzically and smiled. "I got an idea."


Several Hours Later

Beth's POV

We'd been hanging around in the basement, keeping a low profile and playing cards while we waited for our latest arrival. When I heard footsteps on the basement stairs I jumped up, walking quickly to greet our newest visitors.

"Hello?" Jefferson's British accent echoed through the basement. "We're here!"

"Jefferson! Pamela!" I said excitedly as I met them at the foot of the stairs. Jefferson was helping Pamela down the stairs, and when she reached the bottom he turned and picked me up in a big hug, squeezing me tight. "Hey!"

"Hey Princess, how are you?" He asked as Sam pushed past us.

"Pamela, hey!" Sam said, smiling at the psychic who was standing near us, smiling broadly. "It's me, Sam."

Pamela looked in his direction, reaching out to run her hand along his face. "Sam?" She asked lightly and he nodded.

"Yeah."

"Sam is that you?" She asked again, stroking along his cheek. Jefferson dropped me to my feet and we turned to look at the pair.

"I'm right here," Sam said softly.

"Oh. Know how I can tell?" She asked, and Sam shook his head even though she couldn't see him. She reached out quickly and grabbed him on the ass, squeezing tight and getting a surprised yelp from my little brother. "That perky little ass of yours!" Pamela's voice returned to the normal, cheeky woman we knew her to be. "You could bounce a nickel off that thing. Of course I know it's you, Grumpy. Same way I know that's a demon," she said, pointing to Ruby and then turning to me. "That's my girl Beth, and that one's off limits," this time pointing to Dean who chuckled. Pamela turned to look at Anna standing a short distance away. "And that poor girl's Anna, not to mention you've been eyeing off my rack," she finished, looking back at Sam.

"Uh…uh…uh," Sam stuttered, and I wasn't sure if it was because she'd just demonstrated an uncanny ability to see without eyes, or if he'd actually just been busted checking out her generous cleavage. Jefferson burst into laughter and Pamela smiled at him.

"Don't sweat it, kiddo," she said to Sam. "I still got more senses than most."

"Got it," Sam said with a smile.

"Hey, Anna," Pamela said, turning to the girl who was looking at the family reunion with some confusion. "How are you? I'm Pamela."

"Hi," Anna said shyly.

"Beth told me what's been going on. I'm excited to help," she said.

"Oh. That's nice of you."

"Oh, well, not really," Pamela admitted with a shrug and Jefferson rolled his eyes.

"Yeah, any chance she gets to dick over an angel, she's taking it," he commented, shaking his head at me.

"Why?" Anna asked.

Pamela smiled, turning to Anna again and saying, "They stole something from me." She removed the sunglasses that had been covering her eyes up until this point, and underneath was a set of prosthetic Lilith-style white eyes. Anna gasped. "Demon-y, I know. But they're just plastic. Good for business. Makes me look extra-psychic, don't you think?" She laughed at her own joke and I shook my head with amusement. Same old Pamela.

"Now…" Pamela continued. "How about you tell me what your deal is? Hmm? Don't you worry."

Pamela got right down to business as soon as we were in the panic room. I settled on the desk next to Jefferson, leaning comfortably against his shoulder and he playfully pushed back with a grin.

"So…" I said quietly as Pamela lay Anna down on the bed. "You and Pamela, huh?" I raised an eyebrow at him and Jefferson winked at me.

"A gentleman never tells," he said in his cheeky British accent.

"Well that's not something you have to worry about is it now Romeo?" Pamela asked, not even turning her head to look at us.

"Now, now, I am a perfect gentleman, my dearest," Jefferson said with a wink and she snorted.

"Do all your little girlfriends fall for that?" Pamela asked and I laughed at their banter.

"Only the blondes," Jefferson admitted with an exaggerated sigh.

Pamela snorted again and shook her head. "Okay, Anna, we're going to ignore him now and get started, all right?" She asked to which the girl nodded.

I felt eyes on me and turned to see Dean staring as he perched on the arm of a chair nearby. He smiled at me when I glanced in his direction and I flashed him a smile back, my heart skipping a beat, even in the thick of things he could make me feel like a lovesick teenager – I considered it a good thing.

Pamela started to count Anna down into a state of hypnosis, and we all fell quiet, listening with interest. "Nice and relaxed. Now, I'm going to count down from five to zero. When we're at zero, you'll be in a deep state of hypnosis. As I count down, just go deeper and deeper, okay? 5... 4... 3... 2... 1. Deep sleep. Deep sleep. Every muscle calm and relaxed. Can you hear me?"

"I can hear you," Anna replied softly.

"Now, Anna, tell me… how can you hear the angels? How did you know about the sigil?" Pamela asked.

"I don't know, I just did," Anna said.

"Your father… what's his name?"

"Rich Milton," Anna replied.

"All right," Pamela said patiently and calmly. "But I want you to look further back…when you were very young…just a couple of years old."

"I don't want to," Anna said quickly.

"It'll be okay. Anna, just one look – that's all we need," Pamela prompted.

"No."

"What's your dad's name? Your real dad. Why is he angry at you?" Pamela pushed as Anna started to move around on the bed, her head thrashing from side to side.

"No…" she said, her breath coming in short, panicked bursts. "No! No," Anna suddenly screamed and I frowned as Pamela reached for her, trying to settle the girl.

"Calm down," Pamela instructed as Anna moved on the bed.

"No!" Anna screamed as her body lurched forward off the bed and then fell back against the pillow. "He's gonna kill me!" She screamed.

"Anna, you're safe," Pamela said.

Anna screamed again and sat up on the bed. The door to the room slammed shut on Ruby and sparks flew as all the lights in the room shattered. I jumped to my feet, feeling Jefferson's hand on my arm, holding me back.

"Calm down," Pamela said in an oddly calm voice. My heart was beating out of my chest, and I looked around urgently for Dean and Sam.

"He's gonna kill me!" Anna screamed again.

"It's all right, Anna," Pamela said, but I wasn't convinced. The girl was screaming and I broke free of Jefferson, reaching for Anna.

"Anna…" I said, trying to get her attention.

"Beth, don't…" Jefferson said, grabbing for me. Anna sat up again and I felt her hit me, sending me backwards where I slammed into Dean, his arms coming around my chest to stop me from flying into the wall.

Pamela stood up, holding her hand over Anna's face, and speaking quickly to the girl. "Wake in 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. Anna…" The girl stopped screaming and took a deep breath. "Anna? You all right?"

Anna sat up, looking at the psychic intently. Pamela knelt on the floor next to the bed, looking up at the girl.

"Thank you Pamela. That helps a lot," she said calmly. "I remember now."

"Remember what?" Sam asked, frowning and looking over at her, his voice echoing in the room.

"Who I am," she answered, glancing at him.

Dean had moved me beside him and was checking me over with his hands. He looked up as Anna spoke and frowned. "Okay, I'll bite. Who are you?"

"I'm an angel," she said calmly, and I immediately recognised the non-emotion in the voice, she sounded like Cas when he spoke, the only angel I'd met who wasn't like that was Ezekiel.

We'd moved upstairs to the library and I was rolling my shoulders, feeling a little sore, but glad it had been Dean I'd hit, and not the wall.

"Don't be afraid, I'm not like the others," Anna said to us, and Ruby scoffed next to her.

"I don't find that very reassuring," she said.

"Neither do I," Pamela said from where she was sitting on the desk with Jefferson.

Anna frowned and started to pace the room. "So… Castiel, Uriel – they're the ones that came for me?" She asked, looking at me.

"You know them?" Sam asked, and she turned to look at him.

"We were kind of in the same foxhole," she said.

"So, what, were they like your bosses or something?" Dean asked.

"Try the other way around," Anna said with a smirk.

Dean chuckled, shaking his head. "Look at you." Anna smiled in response.

"But now they want to kill you?" I asked, frowning at the change in allegiance.

"Orders are orders. I'm sure I have a death sentence on my head," Anna said with a shrug. I frowned at that statement, wondering how it was that an angel came to have a bounty out on her.

"Why?" Pamela asked, frowning in the same manner that I did.

"I disobeyed…which, for us, is about the worst thing you can do. I fell," Anna replied.

"Meaning?" Dean asked.

"She fell to Earth," Jefferson said quietly, watching her with a curiosity that used to pass through my father's eyes too. "She became human."

"Wait a minute," Sam interrupted, holding out his hand. "I don't understand. So, angels can just become human?"

"It kind of hurts," Anna said, shrugging. "Try cutting your kidney out with a butter knife. That kind of hurt. I ripped out my grace."

"Come again?" Dean asked.

"My grace," Anna replied. "It's … energy. Hacked it out and fell. My mother, Amy, couldn't get pregnant. Always called me her little miracle. She had no idea how right she was." Anna smiled, thinking about her human mother, pausing to look up at the ceiling.

"So, you just forgot that you were God's little Power Ranger?" Dean asked.

"The older I got, the longer I was human, yeah," Anna said with a nod, turning to face us.

"I don't think you all appreciate how completely screwed we are," Ruby interrupted, leaning against the archway into the kitchen with her arms crossed.

"Ruby's right," Anna said. "Heaven wants me dead."

"And Hell just wants her," Ruby said. "A flesh-and-blood angel that you can question, torture, that bleeds. Sister, you're the Stanley Cup. And sooner or later, Heaven or Hell, they're gonna find you."

"I know," Anna said, nodding. "That's why I'm gonna get it back."

"What?" Sam asked.

"My grace."

"You can do that?" I asked, raising any eyebrow at her.

"If I can find it," Anna replied.

"So, what, you're just gonna take some divine bong hit, and shazam, you're Roma Downey?" Dean asked, raising his eyebrow at the redhead.

"Something like that," Anna said, nodding.

"All right, I like this plan," Dean said enthusiastically. "So where's this grace of yours?"

"Lost track," Anna said, stopping her pacing to stand in front of him, staring down into his eyes. "I was falling about 10,000 miles per hour at the time."

"Wait. You mean falling, like, literally?" Sam asked, and she looked over at him.

"Yes."

"Like the way a human eye can see?" Sam asked. Jefferson stood up, stepping over to Sam with a nod.

"Like a comet, maybe, or a meteor?" Jefferson asked.

"Why do you ask?" Anna asked curiously.


Sam's POV

Half an hour later Jefferson, Ruby and I were elbow deep in research, looking through books and magazines. I found myself struggling with the knowledge that sitting next to me was the same demon who had been responsible for bringing Beth into our lives, and she had no idea that I knew about her.

I pushed it to the back of my mind, my eyes catching sight of Dean and Beth in the kitchen as they talked to Anna and Pamela. Maybe Dean was right, maybe it was best for Beth to not know about this, but that didn't make me feel any more comfortable about it, I was conflicted, wanting to be near Ruby, but also sick with the knowledge of what she had done.

"Here," I said, pointing to an article online. "In March '85, a meteorite vanished in the night sky over northwestern Ohio. It was sighted nine months before Anna was born, and she was born in that part of Ohio."

"You're pretty buff for a nerd," Ruby said with a smile and I ignored it.

"Look, I think it was Anna. And here, same time – another meteor over Kentucky," I said, this time looking at Jefferson who was nodding and leaning forward to read the information.

"And that's her grace?" He asked.

"Might be," I said with a nod.

"All right," Ruby said, raising an eyebrow. "That just narrows it down to an entire state."

"Look, it's a start," I countered and Jefferson nodded, standing up and patting me on the shoulder.

"Well done Sam, very good," he said, walking off to join the others in the kitchen, leaving me alone with Ruby.

"Sam… I'm sorry," Ruby said, standing up and moving away, turning to look at me.

"For what?" I asked, looking down at the computer.

"For bringing you this mess. If I had known, I would have kept my trap shut."

"Yeah, well, we'll muddle through," I muttered, closing the computer and looking up at her.

"Not this time," Ruby said, her voice heavy with emotion. "You do not want to get between these two armies. It's Godzilla and Mothra. If one side doesn't get us, the other one will."

"So, what do you want to do?" I asked, frustration hedging into my voice. "Dump Anna and run? Forget it," I said, shaking my head. "Look, I know the angels freak you out."

"Forget the angels," Ruby said, crossing her arms. "It's Alastair I'm scared of."

"Alastair?"

"You met him in the church. Practically the grand inquisitor downstairs. Picasso with a razor." She responded, wrapping her arms tightly around her chest.

"And?" I asked, curious.

"And you should pull him out and throw him back in the Pit…if you weren't so out of shape."

"Ruby…" I started.

"No, your abilities – you're getting flabby," Ruby countered and I knew she was right, I couldn't do what she needed me to do to keep us all safe.

"Yeah, so how do I tone up?" I asked, looking at her.

"You know how. You know what you got to do," she said and the memory of being with her, not just of sleeping with her, but other things we had done together, flashed through my mind. I felt repulsed and craved it all at the same time, pushing it from my mind.

"No, I'm not doing that anymore," I said, shaking my head.

"Sam…"

"I said no," I reiterated more forcefully.

"Well, than you better pray that Anna gets her groove back, or we're all dead." Ruby said, rolling her eyes at me.


Dean's POV

"Yeah, okay man, take it easy all right? Let us know if there's anything you need," I said to Jefferson who was on the other end of the phone call. Jefferson replied that he was more than capable of taking care of himself and the cheeky blind girl and I chuckled, shaking my head. People thought I was a bit of a womaniser, I had nothing when compared to that guy, the man was a player to the extreme, and yet everyone loved him. We hung up and I shook my head with a smile, heading back toward the house.

Anna stepped out of the shadows and intercepted me with a smile. "Pamela get home okay?" She asked, and I nodded.

"Yeah. She said she was sorry. It's just after last time, she, uh… this is just a little too rich for her blood," I said.

"I don't blame her," Anna said, staring up at the stars. "You guys should do the same."

"Well, we're not that smart," I said with a grin and I thought I detected the slightest smile at the corner of her mouth.

"Can I ask you something?" I questioned her, taking a deep breath and moving to face her. She turned her eyes to look into mine and nodded. "What do they want me for? Why did they save me?" I had been questioning this for as long as I'd been out of Hell. From what I'd seen, angels didn't do anything without a reason, and they were so far not revealing to me what that was even though they said they had work for me.

"I'm sorry," Anna said, shaking her head. "The angels weren't talking about it. And it was after I fell."

"That's another question," I said, pushing back my disappointment. "Why would you fall? Why would you want to be one of us?"

"You don't mean that," she said with a frown.

"I don't? A bunch of – of miserable bastards… eating, crapping, confused, afraid…"

"I don't know," Anna said. "There's loyalty…forgiveness…love."

"Pain," I countered.

"Chocolate cake," Anna smiled.

"Guilt."

"Sex," she pointed out and I smiled, thinking about Beth.

"Yeah, you got me there," I said softly, nodding with a grin.

"I mean it," Anna said. "Every emotion, Dean, even the bad ones…it's why I fell. It's why … why I'd give anything not to have to go back. Anything."

"Feelings are overrated, if you ask me," I said, sighing. I didn't want to feel anything, it hurt too much.

"Beats being an angel," Anna replied.

"How's that possible?" I asked, shrugging my shoulders. "You guys are powerful and perfect. You don't doubt yourselves or God or anything."

"Perfect…like a marble statue. Cold…no choice… only obedience," Anna said. "Dean, do you know how many angels have actually seen God? Seen his face?" I shook my head.

"All of you?"

"Seven angels. Seven. And I'm not one of them," Anna said.

"That's it?" I asked, amazed. "Well, how do you even know that there is a God?"

"We have to take it on faith… which we're killed if we don't have," Anna replied.

"Huh…" I said, frowning. Beth's faith amazed me on the best of days, my own was somewhat more beaten down and non-existent. Only her face kept me going, kept me wanting to do better.

"I was stationed on Earth 2000 years. Just… watching…silent… invisible… out on the road… sick for home…waiting on orders from an unknowable father I can't begin to understand. So don't tell me that…."

I laughed, thinking about what she'd just said and she stopped speaking, looking up at me.

"What is so funny? What?"

"Nothing. Sorry. It's just… I can relate," I said, nodding at her. My whole life had been as she described. Waiting on Dad to come home to us, obeying his orders when he was gone, never knowing when it might be the last time he came back. By the time we came across Beth I had been ready to snap, so tightly wound, and I knew I was turning into Dad, my whole focus on hunting and keeping Sam safe.

I'd told her this in passing before, but the truth was, the reason I convinced Dad to bring Beth with us hadn't been because she deserved a chance at revenge for her father, or to keep her safe. If I wanted that I'd stop hunting now, and I'd tell her about Ruby and help her get that revenge. No, my reason for convincing Dad to bring her with us had been because she'd been different. Soft, fragile, but also with a strength that was hidden in her faith, a belief that the world could be a better place.

I'd wanted someone to be my friend, to help me through the hard times, to care for me as much as I cared for Sammy. Beth had done that, and she'd done it without question.

"Hey!" I was startled out of my thoughts as Beth walked toward us.

"Did you find something?" I asked, looking over at my wife standing on the other side of the car.

"I think so," she said with a smile and a nod.


Beth's POV

Dean and Anna joined us in the library and I nodded at Sam, smiling and proud of the fact that my little brother was a research extraordinaire.

"Union, Kentucky," Sam said in response to Dean's query about where the grace was. "Found some accounts of a local miracle."

"Yeah?" Dean asked, looking curiously at him.

"Yeah. In '85 there was an empty field outside of town. Six months later, there was a full-grown oak. They say it looks a century old at least."

"Anna, what do you think?" Dean asked, glancing at the girl.

"The grace. Where it hit, it could have done something like that, easy," she replied with a nod.

"So, grace ground zero," I said, looking at her. "It's not destruction. It's…"

"Pure creation," Anna finished. I glanced at Dean who was looking impressed. We all looked at each other, everyone seemed ready to get on the road and see what we could find.

An hour later I found myself squashed between Dean and Sam in the front seat, my head leaning back as I tried to get some rest. Dean looked in the rear-view mirror at Anna and Ruby and laughed.

"What?" Ruby asked, and I could see her rolling her eyes at him, scowling.

"Nothing. It's just… an angel and a demon, riding in the back seat. It's like the setup to a bad joke… or a Penthouse Forum letter," Dean said and I chuckled, shaking my head.

"Dude…" Sam said sternly, shaking his head. "Reality…porn."

"You call this reality?" Dean countered, and Sam sighed, looking out the window. Dean glanced down at me and I smiled up at him. "Would be funnier still if we threw the preacher's daughter into the mix," he said quietly to me and I chuckled, shaking my head.

"This preacher's daughter has her limits," I said to which Sam laughed.

By morning we'd reached Kentucky, and the field where the oak tree had sprung to life. It was one of the biggest trees I'd ever seen in my life, silhouetted against the sunbeams that were streaming from the clouds above. Patches of blue sky peeked out at us from white clouds and I stopped, staring. It reminded me of the birthing grounds Ezekiel had taken me to when he'd kidnapped my body to keep me safe from a hallucinating Dean.

"It's beautiful…" Dean breathed beside me.

"It's where the grace touched down," Anna said, stepping forward. "I can feel it."

"You ready to do this?" Dean asked her.

"Not really," she answered, but she stepped forward regardless, leading us toward the oak tree.

"Anna, what are we even looking for?" Sam asked as we walked. Anna reached the trunk of the tree and placed her hand against the bark, sighing.

"It doesn't matter. It's not here. Not anymore," she replied. "Someone took it."

I frowned when she said this, feeling a stab of fear pass through me. We were in deep, and this had been one of our best chances to get out of this in one piece. Now what were we going to do?

By nightfall we'd found an abandoned barn to hide out in, and Anna was sitting dejectedly on a bale of hay, staring into space. I paced the barn, trying to come up with another game plan.

"We still got the hex bags," Dean said. "I say we head back to the panic room."

"What, forever?" Ruby asked sarcastically.

"I'm just thinking out loud!" Dean snapped.

"Oh, you call that thinking?"

"Hey! Hey, hey, hey. Stop it," I said, frowning at the demon.

"Anna's grace is gone. You understand? She can't angel up," Ruby pointed out. "She can't protect us. We can't fight Heaven and Hell. One side maybe, but not both. Not at once."

"Um… guys?" Anna interrupted, looking at us. "The angels are talking again." I stopped pacing and tuned in, trying to connect to the angelic line that had been deadly silent for the last few days. She was right.

"What are they saying?" Sam asked.

"It's weird… like a recording… a loop. It says…" Anna paused, listening and I heard it at the same time, the words taking my breath away. "Dean Winchester gives us Anna by midnight, or…." She stopped, looking over at me.

"Or what?" Dean asked.

"…or we hurl him back to damnation," I finished, my breath catching in my throat. I closed my eyes, willing back the panic that was threatening to overtake me. Dean's mouth fell open in disbelief while Sam startled at the words I had relayed, moving into action.

"Anna… do you know of any weapon that works on an angel?" Sam asked.

"To what? To kill them?" Anna asked, and Sam nodded.

"Nothing we could get to… not right now," she replied.

"Okay, wait, wait, wait," Dean said, holding out his hand as I sat down hard on a bale of hay behind me, bringing all my training to the front and pushing the despair, the worry, the panic to the back of my mind. I stilled my breathing, calmed my mind, making it impersonal as John had taught me.

"I say we call Bobby. We get him back from hedonism," Dean said, walking over closer to us.

"Dean, what's he going to tell us that we don't already know?" I asked, lifting my head up to look at him.

"I don't know, but we got to think of something!" Dean snapped, his eyes starting to look just as panicked as I was feeling.

"He's right," Sam said, nodding at me. "We gotta come up with a plan, and a damn good one."


Dean's POV

I didn't like the way things were going, not one damn bit, but it wasn't like we had a lot of choices. I had to get away for a bit, so I took the book I was reading along with a light, and found myself resting against the trunk of the Impala, light illuminating the words on the page, though I was barely taking in the information contained there. Anna walked out of the trees and approached me, leaning against the car.

"Hey. Holding up okay?" I asked, looking over at her.

"Trying," she said.

"Yeah." I knew exactly how she felt.

"A little scared, I guess," she said. "So um…Dean…I just wanted to thank you."

"For what?" I asked, standing up and turning my attention to the woman who was now watching me intently.

"Everything," she said with a smile. "You guys… you didn't have to help me…"

"Hey, let's can the 'thanks for trying' speech, you know?" I interrupted. "Participation trophies suck ass."

Anna didn't laugh at my joke, instead shaking her head. "I don't know. Maybe I don't deserve to be saved," she said.

"Don't talk like that," I said.

"I disobeyed," Anna continued, turning her blue eyes to me. "Lucifer disobeyed. It's our murder one, and I knew it. Maybe I got to pay."

"Yeah well, we've all done thing we got to pay for," I said quietly, thinking about my stint in Hell. Anna watched me silently, turning to lean against the back of the car and staring up at me.

"I got to tell you something," Anna said, "you're not gonna like it."

"Okay. What?"

She hesitated for a moment, then took a breath. "About a week ago, I heard the angels talking… about you… what you did in Hell. Dean… I know," she said, and it felt like her eyes were seeing through to the very core of me, as if she'd stabbed me in the heart. She reached out a hand and placed it against my cheek and I froze, frowning at her.

"It wasn't your fault," she said to me. "You should forgive yourself."

"Anna…" I said, swallowing and shaking my head. "I don't want to, uh… I don't want to… I can't talk about that," I said, barely getting the words out. I hadn't even talked to Beth about it, how could I talk about it to a complete stranger?

"I know," Anna said, staring at me. "But when you can, you have people that want to help. You are not alone. That's all I'm trying to say."

I stared down at the red hair cascading over her shoulders, not sure of how to respond. I knew Beth had been waiting patiently for me to open up about this, and yet here I was, I couldn't even get out the words that I didn't want to talk about it. Anna suddenly leaned forward, grasping the lapels of my jacket and pulling me into her, soft lips brushing against mine. I startled and pulled back, looking at her, confused.

"What… why did you do that?" I asked.

"You know… last night on earth… all that," she said with a shrug, smiling at me.

"Uh… huh…" I said with a smirk, shaking my head. "You're stealing my best line," I chuckled and she smiled, moving in to kiss me again. I stopped her, putting a hand on her shoulder and shaking my head.

"Look, you're nice… you are… but I can't do that," I said, looking down at her.

"I thought you liked me," Anna said.

"Yeah I do, but not like that," I said with a sigh. "Anna, I'm married, and I take that vow seriously."

Anna glanced down at my wedding ring as if seeing it for the first time. "Oh," she said softly. "I uh… I didn't know," she said. "Where is she?"

It was my turn to frown, confused by the question. The frown was replaced by a smile as I saw Beth walk up behind the Impala from the tree line.

I nodded toward her and looked at Anna. "She's right there."

Anna turned to look at Beth and then back at me. "I thought she was your sister," she said quietly.

"She is… kinda… not by blood… she grew up with us for a while…" I stopped, smiling and slipping my arm around Beth's waist as she joined us.

"Hey guys," Beth said, returning the smile. "Everything good out here?"

"Yeah," Anna said, nodding.

"Mhmm," I agreed, kissing Beth's forehead.

Beth yawned as she leaned in to me and I squeezed her waist. "You tired?"

"Yeah," she answered. "How about you Anna? Do you think you could sleep? It's a big day tomorrow."

Anna looked thoughtfully at her and then nodded. "Yeah, maybe. I am tired."

"Okay then," I said, nodding. "Let's go get comfy in the barn then."

When we got indoors, Sam started to fuss over Anna, making sure she had somewhere comfortable to sleep. He was avoiding Ruby, I noticed, and looked decidedly uncomfortable now that he knew who she was. I wondered if perhaps I shouldn't rely on the demon after all – it almost seemed as if Sam was taking this more seriously than me. Funny how these things worked sometimes, I didn't want to trust her, I didn't want Beth anywhere near her, but I was making a sacrifice for the good of the whole.

Beth pulled me off to a storage room at the back of the barn, shutting the door firmly behind her. I watched as she turned to face me, her brown eyes locking on to mine.

"Hey," she said with a smile, tilting her head to the side.

"Hey yourself," I grinned back, liking the look on her face, she was in a cheeky mood.

"So I told Sam to keep the home wrecker busy," Beth said with a raised eyebrow, taking a couple of steps closer and running her hands up my chest.

"Home wrecker?"

"Uh huh," she said with a nod. "I've been watching the way she looks at you…"

"And how does she look at me?" I asked, sliding my hands around her waist, stroking along the fabric of her shirt.

"The same way I do, like she wants to eat you up for breakfast," Beth said, biting softly on my bottom lip and then darting her tongue out to tease me.

"Are you jealous?" I teased back, breaking away to start kissing along her neck as I slid my hands up under her top.

"Should I be?" Beth asked, peeking up at me through veiled eyelashes.

"She kissed me," I said to her, turning serious for a moment and staring into her eyes.

"I saw."

"And?"

"And I think you handled yourself very well," she replied with a smile.

"Heh," I said with a chuckle, leaning in. "You've got nothing to worry about sugarpie, but then you've always known that." I claimed her lips in a sensual kiss, drawing out that moan I loved so much. With a growing hunger I pushed her back against the bales of hay that were stacked against a wall. Beth had placed a few blankets over the top of a couple of them, obviously in the same frame of mind I now found myself in. I lifted her up with a moan, spreading her legs and running my hands down her inner thighs, caressing through the jeans she was wearing.

"Mmm, tell me you have a way to lock that door," I said as I started to unbutton the shirt she was wearing and revealing a black lace bra underneath.

"No, but I told Sam I was going to drag you in here and take advantage of you in every way possible, I think he got the message," Beth said, tugging at my t-shirt and pulling it over my head. I grinned and pushed the shirt from her shoulders, fumbling a little with her jeans as she leaned back, sliding them down over her hips.

"Well I have to say I've never had a literal roll in the hay before, this is new," I said, pulling the jeans the rest of the way and then shucking my own to the ground leaving me in just my boxers, my hard cock pressed firmly against Beth's leg as I removed her bra, massaging her breasts and then ran my hands along her stomach, down over the little lace patch covering her groin.

"Have I mentioned lately how sexy you are?" I asked, grinning at Beth who blushed and then wrapped her ankles around my knees, drawing me in closer to her.

"Not really, why don't you show me?" She said lightly, kissing along my neck, her hands trailing down my stomach and then sliding into the boxers. I gasped with pleasure as she gripped my cock in her hand, squeezing the tip and then sliding along my length with the slippery pre-cum that she eased from me.

"Oh god…" I moaned, dropping my head back to look up at the roof of the barn. "That feels amazing," I said softly as she continued to stroke me at a steady even pace, her grip firm and tantalising.

"Mmmm… well you feel amazing too," she said quietly, and I watched with delight as she pushed me back a little, falling to her knees on the ground in front of me. My thighs tensed as she reached up to slide my boxers down, my cock springing free of its confines. Beth smiled up at me and then sucked my tip into her mouth. I shuddered with pleasure as her warm wet mouth surrounded me, and she ran her tongue around my tip, flicking it across my head and down my slit. I gasped again at how intense it felt, and ran my fingers through her thick, dark hair, gripping it and guiding her down on me.

Beth responded with a moan, sucking me in deeper to her mouth as she reached up to hold my hips, squeezing softly as she bobbed up and down along my erection. I felt my breathing start to speed up with every little lick and suck as she varied the pace, then changed direction on me, pulling free with a popping noise to nuzzle under my hard arousal and lick my balls. I cried out with pleasure and then swallowed hard, reminding myself that we had company on the other side of the wall.

Starting with one, she licked and sucked my sensitive ball into her mouth, teasing with her tongue, and then switching off to the other and lavishing it with just as much attention. My legs started to tremble with how good it felt and when she returned to swirl her tongue back around my tip I groaned, reaching down to guide her deeper, thrusting into her mouth with a need that was contrary to how gentle I had been with her lately.

With a groan, Beth sucked me in further and I felt her mouth constricting around me as she drew me deeper, and then circled her tongue around my hard cock. I whimpered, and leaned my hands against the hay bales behind her, pressing against them as she continued to work at me.

"Baby… I'm not gonna last much longer if you keep that up…" I moaned, receiving a wink in return as she smiled around my cock. She pulled back and kissed my tip, looking up at me as she continued to stroke along my entire length with her right hand, making me weak at the knees.

"Don't hold back, I want you to," she said softly and then she slid her mouth around me again, taking my entire length in. I grabbed her head again and thrust into her as she bobbed up and down, it felt so good, I knew I wasn't going to last long as the warmth of her wet mouth around my cock lured me in. I pushed and thrust with short, hard breaths until finally I couldn't hold back any longer, my cock letting it all go, exploding as I thrust deeply into her mouth and Beth grabbed my hips, sucking hard and drawing out my release. She moaned around my twitching arousal and swallowed as I gasped for breath.

Finally my cock softened and I groaned, pulling back as she licked her lips and grinned up at me.

"Better than the angel and demon walking into a bar joke?" Beth asked, and I laughed softly.

"Oh yes, the preacher's daughter is always the dark horse…" I replied.

I felt myself growing hard again at the thought of what I wanted to do to her next, and pulling her up to her feet I lifted her up on the hay bales. I pushed playfully on her shoulders until she was on the blanket, level with my waist and then took her left leg in hand and placed her ankle on my shoulder. I kissed along her calf, eyes locked on my destination as I eventually made my way down to her inner thigh, finding her wide open for me. With a swift movement I pulled her lace panties down and discarded them on the ground, returning to her centre with a smile.

Licking along her folds I received a welcoming moan as Beth arched against me, her knee sliding down over my shoulder and tensing around me. Blowing a teasing breath across her clit, I smiled as she gasped with desire, moving toward me as I ran my hands along her thighs.

"Don't tease…" she begged, laying back against the blanket and I looked up to see her breasts heaving while her breath started to get more urgent.

In response I sucked her clit into my mouth, circling it lightly with my tongue, caressing it as she moaned loudly, arching again to press herself against me. "Oh yes…" she whimpered, and I smiled, sliding a finger into her. She was hot, wet and more than ready as I flicked my tongue across her clit and moved my fingers in and out, delighting in how she moved against me. Gasping for air and grabbing at the blanket, she fought not to cry out too loudly even though it wasn't going to take much to figure out what was going on in here if someone wanted to loiter on the other side of the door.

I timed my sucks on her clit with the thrusts of my fingers, pushing deeply into her, curling a finger and pressing against that sweet spot that I knew drove her crazy. She couldn't help herself and cried out with ecstasy as I pressed up against it, circling in large rotations as I mirrored the action with my tongue.

"Oh god Dean…" Beth moaned, thrusting her hips against me. I took the hint and started to draw her harder into my mouth, my tongue flicking and then gentle massaging her. I sped up, feeling her arching as she called out. "Oh God… baby I need you inside me…"

She didn't have to ask me twice. I pulled back, flipping her over without any warning and chuckling at her little yelp of surprise. Guiding her legs down to the ground, I pushed her down against the hay. My cock was hard again and with one long motion I drove it into her warmth, gripping her hips and whimpering as she convulsed around me, her walls tensing and massaging my sensitive cock.

"Damn you feel good," I moaned, and I started to thrust quickly into her, unable to hold back as she moaned her approval, leaning forward and letting me take her hard and fast. I pushed her hair to the side as I drove into her again and again, sliding my hands along her perfect hourglass shape, down over her back, tracing the claw marks that trailed down her shoulder blades, and a few knife wounds or gashes from fights.

Images suddenly flashed in front of my eyes, red bloody gashes and markings carved into the skin of a woman I was fucking relentlessly, Ashmedai watched with milky white eyes, standing to the side. The girl cried and screamed as the demon carved another symbol into her back, blood pouring down over her skin and flowing to my groin, mixing with sweat and other fluids.

I froze at that unbidden memory and Beth glanced over her shoulder. "Dean?" Her voice sounded far away and she reached a hand back to run along my arm. "Baby, are you okay?" I gasped, pushing the memory out of the forefront of my mind, and I shook my head, trying to clear it.

"I can't," I said, pulling out of Beth and running a hand across my face. "I don't want to hurt you." I wasn't sure I could control myself, my body just wanted to pound into something, to work out these frustrations that were building inside of me. Seeing Alastair again had brought Hell to surface and I was holding it together, but barely.

"You won't hurt me," Beth said, turning and taking my cock in hand, squeezing it and drawing out a moan, stroking me firmly. I shook my head again and she used her free hand to pull my lips down to hers, biting on my lower lip and then thrusting her tongue in to meet mine in a passionate kiss.

"Take what you need Dean," she said as she pulled back from the kiss.

I hesitated, but she looked so sure, her eyes staring at me with complete trust. She squeezed my cock again and I was gone, lost in what I wanted to do to her. Grasping her face between my hands I kissed her long and hard, drawing out a moan and then working my way down her neck, nipping and biting as I fought to maintain just a little control.

Flipping her back on to her stomach, I pushed Beth against the hay bales again, her breasts pressed against the blanket. She relaxed into the fabric, laying her arms under her head and turning to look back at me, still so much trust. I swallowed and then spread her legs with my knee, sliding myself through her wet folds again, finding her entrance and thrusting in. She cried out and again I hesitated until she pushed back against me.

"Harder," she said, looking back at me with dark eyes.

I groaned, rocking my hips forcefully into her and she gasped, sliding her arms in front of her and gripping at the edge of the hay bale as I thrust into her a few more times.

"Oh that's deep," she moaned, using her hips to push back as I rocked into her, "keep going."

She flexed around me, it felt so damn good that I hesitated again, the fear that I might actually hurt her, like I had so many others in Hell.

"Dammit Dean I'm not a china doll!" Beth snapped, and I frowned at her. I'd never heard her talk like that, unless we were sparring – this definitely wasn't sparring. "I said take what you want," she said, pushing back against me.

I thrust into her again, drawing out another moan as she welcomed me inside of her. "That's it baby, just let yourself go," she said and I did. I released a breath I didn't even know I was holding, and I grabbed her hips, pulling her back on to my hard, bulging cock as I thrust into her. She groaned but didn't tell me to stop, so I kept going, she felt amazing as I drew myself out almost all the way, ramming back inside.

Closing my eyes I pounded into her soft flesh, spurred on by the little yelps and moans Beth let out as I pushed her harder than we'd ever done before. She'd always been a sister to me, someone to care for and love that I'd never considered being so rough with her, but now I saw that maybe she sometimes wanted it as much as I did. Seeing this, somehow the images of Hell faded, no longer seeing the beaten, tortured women at my mercy; all that was in front of me was my incredibly sexy lover who needed me to take her hard and fast.

I dragged my hands down her back and when I reached her hips I slid one hand around the front of her, slipping my finger in to find her clit and rubbing it. I continued to drive hard into her, circling around her clit and biting softly at the back of her neck.

"Oh my… oh yes baby that's … that's, god keep doing that…" Beth was trying to be quiet, but neither of us were succeeding much as she moaned with each thrust, pushing her hips back to meet me.

I could feel my second release starting to build as Beth whimpered into the blanket, her face buried in the soft folds of the fabric. She was panting and rocking back to meet me as I slowed down, drawing myself slowly in and out, staving off my own orgasm and teasing her a little longer. I changed the angle and she shuddered as I quickly circled my fingers around her clit, teasing her to full arousal.

With another whimper she started to thrust back against me. "Dean…" she moaned, looking over her shoulder at me and I saw the need in her eyes. I pushed into her, slamming myself in and out, getting a few little yelps out of her as she groaned her pleasure. She moaned repeatedly as I kept the pace steady and firm, pushing all the way in and then drawing out, thrusting back in so hard and fast that I could feel my balls slapping against her. Beth's legs started to tense and I could feel her giving way to an orgasm that was fast approaching.

"Yeah… oh yes, just like that, harder….don't… ohhhh!" With another groan and shudder, Beth buried her face once more into the blankets, moaning loudly as she hit her finale, calling out her pleasure and sliding against me. I sped up as she slumped against the hay, gripping her hips and holding on so that she wouldn't fall. I took the angle I needed, hitting the spot I wanted. She was more than ready to take it, and I thrust deeply inside.

I felt her hand slip between her legs, teasing her clit as I rocked along her length. She whimpered a little, and I slowed down a little, but she moaned her disapproval, pushing back into me to keep up the steady rhythm. "Oh goddamn…" I groaned, feeling my centre start to tense again, that imminent release wanting to spill over. Suddenly the need to take her hard was gone and I was overcome with the need to slow it down, to just love her.

Beth's little moans and sighs told me she was almost ready to come again as I kept myself buried inside of her now, sliding in long, sensual strokes. "Turn around," I told her, sliding out and she instantly obeyed, spinning to face me as I caught her lips with mine, lifting her up on to the blankets spread across the hay. I climbed up between her open legs and with one swift motion plunged myself back inside of her, both of us moaning into the others' mouths at how incredible it felt.

I pressed my forehead to hers, catching my breath as I slid my arms under hers, pulling us close together. We were joined, as close as we could possibly get and I knew she loved this position. Beth always felt incredible, but this was beyond physical, it was almost spiritual if I believed such a thing existed. Drawing in a shuddering breath, Beth wrapped her legs around my waist and arched to meet my long, slow thrusts.

"Oh you feel so good," Beth moaned in my ear, and I groaned my reply, keeping that slow, lingering pace we loved so much. Beth started to let out a series of soft little groans, rocking faster and I felt her clench around me, starting to spasm and milk my already over sensitive cock. I gasped as she tightened her muscles, squeezing me and pulling me even closer to the edge.

"Oh, damn…" I muttered, closing my eyes and burying my face into her shoulder. Kissing her neck and thrusting a little faster, I met the pace she was setting with each rock of her hips. Beth's hands sent shivers along my back as she slid them along my sweat covered skin and up into my hair, gripping me to her and clinging to me.

"That's it, oh yes…" Beth said softly, groaning again as she guided my pace and I had a moment to think about how she'd never been quite so dominant before in our love making before she started to shake uncontrollably, throwing her head back against the blankets and whimpering. Her thighs tensed around me and I continued the slow, sensual pace to the finale I could feel coming. My orgasm hit like a small wave, rolling through me and into her as I felt myself release, filling her and claiming her as my own. Beth moaned with delight, meeting me head on as she convulsed around me, clamping down and milking me with each contraction.

"God…oh yeah," I gasped into her shoulder and she wrapped her arms tightly around me, pulling me down on to her.

"I love you Dean, oh I love you so much," Beth murmured softly in my ear, holding me tightly. I slumped, letting go of my weight and falling down to blanket the woman beneath me, my best friend, my sister, my lover and my wife.

"You're so incredible," I whispered into her shoulder, kissing the soft white skin beneath my lips.

"Are you okay?" She asked, her eyes peering up at me, indicating that she'd known I was struggling earlier.

"Yeah," I said with a nod.

"Did you get what you needed?"

"You're always what I need. I don't know what I'd do without you," I replied. Beth smiled in response, her hands clasping either side of my face and lifting my chin to look at her. I smiled and kissed her lips, drawing out a moan as I felt myself soften inside of her. Beth moaned a little and I could hear the slight discomfort in her voice.

"Let's not do that rough too often though… I really don't want to break you," I said with a chuckle and she laughed softly, the movement teasing her skin across mine.

"Deal," she said with a kiss. "Though you know sometimes a girl just wants to be taken, I like it when you do that."

"I'll keep that in mind," I said with a grin, rolling to the side of her and pulling her up against me. Beth reached behind her and pulled a blanket up and over us, snuggling her head in to my chest, burying her nose under my chin. She was fast asleep within minutes and I smiled, gently stroking along her shoulders and arm, allowing myself to relax into oblivion.


Dean's POV

Beth was sleeping soundly when I climbed off the hay bales. I tucked the blankets around her naked body before pulling on my clothes and boots, slipping outside into the early morning air for a slash. I wondered where Sam had set up Anna for her sleep, recalling that there'd been a couple of other storage areas near the front of the barn – no one was in sight so I assumed that they were all sleeping. I frowned, thinking about Ruby, and what I was relying on her to do given the plan we'd concocted earlier.

Could I trust her? I'd told Beth to stay away from her, I'd warned Sam, seemed the only person not listening to my own advice was me. I shook my head and zipped up my jeans, shrugging it off, it would all come to light soon enough. Now all that was needed was to convince some overzealous angels that they could trust me.

I walked back into the barn, tightening my jacket around me and thinking about whether I had enough time to give Beth an encore wake-up call before we had to get moving. I didn't expect to come face to face with the very angel I was looking for in that moment.

Stopping dead in my tracks, I warily looked at Uriel who was smirking at me.

"Look at that. It's so cute when monkeys wear clothes," he commented.

I realised there was no way he could have found us, we had the hex bags, and it wasn't soon enough for Ruby to have… "I'm dreaming, aren't I?" I said out loud, realising it was the only explanation.

"It's the only way we could chat…since you're hiding like cowards," Uriel confirmed.

"Don't normally see you off leash," I said, looking around for Cas. "Where's your boss?"

"Castiel? Oh, he, uh…he's not here. See, he has this weakness. He likes you, and he's very partial to your wife. So… I came alone. Time's up boy. We want the girl." Uriel demanded.

"Wouldn't try that if I were you," I said, smirking at him. "See, she got her grace back. Full-blown angel now." I was bluffing, but he didn't know that.

"That would be a neat trick, considering…" Uriel pulled a pendant out from under his shirt revealing a glowing vial of light. "I have her grace right here." I stared at the vial, the light inside of it swirled around inside glowing silvery and white.

"We can't let Hell get their hooks into her," Uriel said.

"Well, then why don't you just give her back her angel juice?" I asked.

"She committed a serious crime," Uriel said, tucking the vial back under his shirt.

"What? Thinking for herself?" I scoffed.

"This is our business, not yours. She's not even human… not technically," Uriel said.

"Yeah well, I guess I just like being a pain in the pooper," I said with a smile.

"No, no. There's more," Uriel said, coming up to me and almost sniffing the air around me. "She likes you, and you like her… Dean, did you cut yourself a slice of… angel food cake? Huh?" Uriel asked and I rolled my eyes. Wrong angel, douchebag, I thought. Not that Beth was technically an angel.

"What do you care?" I asked, turning to face him. "You're junkless down there, right? Like a Ken doll?"

"Ooh," Uriel said, raising his hands in the air and walking away, chuckling like he'd just hit the jackpot, assuming he was right and that I'd been cheating on Beth.

"Well, it's your last chance," Uriel said, turning to face me. "Give us the girl, or…"

"Or what?" I interrupted. "What, you're gonna toss me back in the hole? You're bluffing."

"Try me," Uriel said, the smile falling from his face. "This is a whole lot bigger than the plans we got for you, Dean. You can be replaced."

I hesitated, shaking my head and thinking about what I was about to say. Beth would kill me, and I didn't want to think about what it would do to her if my bluff was called. But I had to push him, I had to take it to the next level.

"What the Hell? Go ahead and do it," I dared him, holding my arms out and setting my eyes to stone.

Uriel paused, assessing me. "You're just crazy enough to go, aren't you?" He shook his head at me, and his eyes almost looked sad.

I shrugged, looking at him. "What can I say? I don't break easy."

"Oh yes, you do," Uriel said, walking around behind me. "You just got to know where to apply the right pressure," he said quietly, and my heart started to skip a beat. There were only two people in the world that could be used to apply pressure to me, and in that moment they were both here with me, and I couldn't protect them.


Sam's POV

Dean was downing a flask of whiskey as Beth came wandering out from the store room they'd spent the night in. She looked pretty satisfied with herself, winking at me and I rolled my eyes trying not to think about what they'd been up to last night. My mind was on Ruby, who had taken off when I'd fallen asleep, all part of the plan to lure out the demons, and as angry as I was with her, I was impressed with the risk she had taken.

My stomach churned at the thought of what Alastair might be putting her through, I'd seen Dean's reaction to him, and it was one filled with fear and loathing. Ruby had been gone a long time, what if something had gone wrong?

"I don't know man," I said, turning to face Dean. "Where's Ruby?"

Dean took another swallow of whiskey, grimacing, and screwing the cap back on the flask. "Hey, she's your Hell buddy," he said to me as Anna walked up to Dean.

"Little early for that, isn't it?" She asked and Dean glanced down at the flask, shrugging and looking a little sheepish.

"It's 2am somewhere," he said.

"You okay?" Anna asked, watching him carefully and I started to see what Beth had been talking about, she was pretty smitten with Dean.

"Yeah, of course," Dean said elusively, dropping his eyes to the floor.

There was a gust of wind outside and the doors to the barn blew open, swinging wide. I gasped at the sight of Uriel and Castiel walking into the darkened barn. The doors slammed shut behind them, and I moved to stand near Anna, Beth flanking her other side, Dean in front of us all.

The angels stopped a good couple of yards away. "Hello Anna," Castiel said to the girl standing behind us. "It's good to see you."

"How?" I asked, looking from the Castiel to Uriel. "How did you find us?" When no one answered, I looked over at my brother. Beth had turned to look at him, shock on her face as he glanced guiltily over at Anna.

"Dean?" She asked, reaching a hand out to him.

"I'm sorry," Dean said to Anna, who was watching him carefully.

"Why?!" I asked.

"Because they gave him a choice," Anna said softly. "They either kill me… or kill you and Beth. I know how their minds work." No one denied the allegations and I scowled, completely flabbergasted that angels… angels of all beings, could behave like this.

Anna turned to look at Dean, and then, glancing at Beth she shrugged, closing the distance to kiss Dean on the lips. My brother looked pained and unhappy as she leaned her forehead against his. "You did the best you could," Anna said. "I forgive you."

She pulled away, turning to face the angels and nodding. "Okay. No more tricks. No more running. I'm ready."


Beth's POV

As soon as the angels walked into the barn I'd sent out a silent cry for Ezekiel, hoping he could do something to stop what was about to happen. I watched in silent amazement when Dean confessed to sacrificing Anna to keep me and Sam safe.

"Cas, don't do this," I said, looking at the angel I'd come to call friend in the last few months.

"I'm sorry," Cas said, as much to me as to Anna.

"No. You're not," Anna said, looking at him. "Not really. You don't know the feeling."

I watched curiously as Cas's face remained unchanged, but I felt a flicker of something pass from him to me, and I knew she was mistaken. Cas might have started out a cold fish with no idea on how to feel emotion, but this had been changing the more he interacted with us, and there was a glimmer of regret beneath the surface.

"Still, we have a history…" Cas said instead. "It's just…"

"Orders are orders," Anna interrupted. "I know. Just make it quick."

Dean closed his eyes, and I frowned, I couldn't believe he was about to let them go through with this.

"Don't you touch a hair on that poor girl's head," a voice sounded from behind us and I spun to see Alastair standing near to us, two more demons emerging from the doorway at the back holding Ruby, who was bleeding from the stomach and gasping with pain.

"How dare you come in this room… you pussing sore," Uriel said, walking up to Alastair as one of the demons pushed Ruby to the ground and she crawled away as fast as she could.

"Name-calling. That hurt my feelings, you sanctimonious, fanatical prick," Alastair said sarcastically. Dean grabbed my arm and Anna's, pulling us to the side and allowing the angels and demons to face off.

"Turn around and walk away now," Cas said, his eyes watching the demons sternly.

"Sure," Alastair said. "Just give us the girl. We'll make sure she gets punished good and proper."

"You know who we are and what we will do. I won't say it again. Leave now… or we lay you to waste," Cas threatened, his eyes never leaving Alastair.

"Think I'll take my chances," Alastair countered and they all looked at each other. Three demons to two angels. Uriel moved first, pushing one of the demons up into a beam, cracking it clear through as dirt rained down from the roof above. A glowing pendant fell out of his shirt and I heard Anna gasp. He spun around as the other demon jumped him from behind, swinging hard and sending him flying.

Cas hit Alastair with an uppercut and grabbed the demon, holding him on his left shoulder as he placed his left hand to Alastair's forehead, attempting to exorcise him. Nothing happened. Cas looked shocked as the demon smirked, breaking Cas's hold on him.

"Sorry kiddo. Why don't you go run to Daddy?" He said, punching Cas and sending him flying to the ground.

There was a flash of light and a scream of pain as Uriel exorcised the demon he had been grappling with. I watched in horror as Alastair grabbed Cas by the lapels of his jacket, wrapping his hand around Cas's throat and beginning to speak in Latin.

"Protestas inferna, me confirma. Protestas inferna, me confirma. Protestas inferna, me confirma…"

Dean grabbed a crowbar and swung from the side, hitting Alastair across the face and breaking the spell. The demon dropped Cas and stood up with a grimace.

"Dean, Dean, Dean… I am so disappointed," he said, swinging his arm toward my brother. "You had such promise!" He focused on Dean and the latter started to choke, grasping at his throat. I felt a twisting pain in my gut as the wind was forced out of my lungs, and Sam fell to the ground beside me, also writhing in pain.

"Dean…" I whispered, reaching out as Alastair focused on him. In the back of my mind I was conscious of Uriel fighting the other demon and then I heard a flash of wings, and saw a dark shadow appear beside Uriel. Ezekiel grabbed the pendant swinging around Uriel's neck as the other angel exorcised the demon in his hands. As soon as the vial was taken Uriel turned to Ezekiel. "No!" He yelled but it was too late.

"Anna!" Ezekiel called out, throwing the pendant to the floor and smashing it. Anna's eyes widened at the sight of Ezekiel and I realised that they knew each other, she recognised him for the first time since recalling who she was. White light started to flow into her mouth. It entered her completely and she fell to her knees, writhing as if something was taking over her.

"Shut your eyes," Anna said as the light started to engulf her. "Shut your eyes!"

I rolled over to Dean who was still gasping for breath and he pulled me into his arms, cradling my face to his chest and holding me tight. I wrapped my arms around him and clamped my eyes shut.

"Shut your eyes!" Anna yelled and all I could hear was her screaming as a burst of light flared behind my closed eyelids and then a blast of hot air washed over us. I clung to Dean, his arms around my waist as it blew past us, and when I opened my eyes Alastair was gone, and so was Anna and Ezekiel.

Dean pulled me to my feet, Sam stumbling up next to us. A quick glance around the room showed that Ruby was still with us, climbing to her feet and gasping in pain while Uriel and Castiel looked at each other, shocked.

We walked toward Cas, who watched as Dean leaned down, picking up the demon killing knife Alastair had dropped when he was obliterated by Anna's light. He stood up, looking it over and then turned eyes to Cas.

"Well, what are you guys waiting for? Go get Anna. Unless, of course, you're scared."

"This isn't over," Uriel said, advancing on Dean. Cas grabbed him by the shoulder, holding him back.

"Oh it looks over to me, junkless," Dean said.

Cas exchanged a look of regret with me, followed with an understanding that something else had happened here – Ezekiel had revealed himself when he hadn't wanted to, all to save Anna, and they knew that, and now Cas knew I was talking to Ezekiel when he wasn't around.

With another burst of air and the sound of wings, Cas and Uriel vanished before our very eyes, and I turned to Dean, sighing with relief.

Ruby stumbled over to us and Sam looked down at her, but I noticed he didn't reach out for her.

"You okay?" Sam asked.

"Not so much," Ruby gasped with a half-smile.

"What took you so long to get here?" Dean asked.

"Sorry I'm late with the demon delivery. I was only being tortured," Ruby said, rolling her eyes.

"I got to hand it to you, Sammy," I said, shaking my head at my little brother. "Bringing them all together all at once – angels and demons. It was a damn good plan."

"Yeah, well, when you got Godzilla and Mothra on your ass, best to get out of their way and let them fight," he answered with a grin.

"Yeah, now you're just bragging," Dean smirked.

"So I guess she's some big-time angel now, huh?" Sam said, changing the subject. "She must be happy… wherever she is."

Dean and Ruby exchanged a look that pretty much said what I was feeling. Anna was like the rest of us, someone who had wanted a simple life, had known what that was like, once – and then had it ripped from her. Only Sam had grown up in this life, and even with the couple of years at Stanford, he had never had that innocence stolen completely from him.

"I doubt it," I said softly, looking over at Dean who smiled sadly at me. Sam just looked at us, and then I turned my attentions to Ruby.

"Let's get you cleaned up," I said, offering her my arm.

"I'll do it," Sam cut in as Ruby reached for me, and I nodded, letting him lead her to a bench nearby.


Several Hours Later

Dean's POV

We'd stopped by the side of the road for a couple of well-earned beers. Ruby had gone, the angels were nowhere to be seen, and somehow I had to figure out just who this new angel in play was, and why he'd jumped in to help Anna. I'd asked Beth, she said it had been Ezekiel, but even she'd been unsure of his motives for helping. I couldn't remember the last time I felt so completely drained, not just physically but emotionally.

"I can't believe we made it out of there," I said quietly, looking over at Sam and Beth who were sitting on the hood of the car.

"Again," Sam said and I had to smile, holding out my bottle. They leaned forward, the glass of the bottles chinking together in a silent toast to battles won, even if it felt like the war was being lost.

We fell silent again and my mind went to Alastair and what he'd said in the heat of battle. Anna's words about turning to Sam and Beth also echoed in my mind; here were the two people I loved most in the world, trusted more than anyone, and I couldn't talk to them about this? They had to know. I knew that Beth had seen some of it through her dreams and that spell she'd done in Kansas, but I'd never really voiced the actual words, I'd told her a vague outline of what Ashmedai had done to me, but Alastair… him I'd never brought up, or the things he had done to me, what he had made me do.

Glancing over at Beth and Sam, I saw them sitting casually together, smiling and laughing like old times over a joke and how we'd gotten out once more by the skin of our teeth. I wanted to tell them, I wanted them to know. My only concern was that they might not like what they heard.

"Hey baby," Beth said, glancing over at me. "What you thinking about?"

I looked up at her and took a deep breath, catching Sam's gaze behind her. "I know you heard him," I said and she glanced back at Sam and then slid off the car.

"Who?" Sam asked with a frown.

"Alastair. What he said… about how I had promise," I said, taking another breath. This wasn't going to be easy.

"I heard him," Sam said with a nod.

"You're not curious? Either of you?" I asked, looking at them.

"Dean, I'm damn curious," Sam answered. "But you're not talking about Hell, and I'm not pushing." He took another swig of his beer and shrugged, indicating that he meant what he said.

I looked at Beth who was watching me cautiously, a sad expression on her face. "What about you? You want me to talk about it?" I received a nod in reply with a concerned look.

"Why?" I asked, frowning. "You've seen it all in your dreams, why do you want me to say it out loud?"

She took a step closer to me, putting her beer on the hood of the car and then reached out to place a hand on my chest. "Dean, I don't know. Maybe if you can talk about it, you can get it out, and we can help you. And there are things I didn't see," she said.

"But you saw Alastair?" I asked. She hesitated, looking at me with concern.

"Yeah, I did, but not until the end," she said quietly, her hand still resting against my heart.

I nodded, thinking that over. So she knew, most of it anyway, and she was still here. I took another breath and started to feel a little bit better, but I still had to tell Sam; he'd been patient with me, not pushing, but it was time.

"Well, Beth knows this, but you don't," I said to Sam and for once he didn't get that flash of jealousy cross his face, he just listened. "It wasn't four months, you know."

"What?" Sam asked.

"It was four months up here, but down there… I don't know. Time's different. It was more like forty years." Beth bit her lip, nodding, and Sam looked suitably shocked.

"My God."

"They, uh… they sliced and carved and tore at me in ways that you… well until there was nothing left. And then, suddenly… I would be whole again… like magic… just so they could start in all over." I stopped, shaking my head. I reached out and pulled Beth in to me, wrapping my arms around her, squeezing her tightly and resting my chin on her head. I felt the comfort of her arms sliding around my waist and holding me back just as tightly.

"And Alastair…at the end of the day… every one… he would come over. And he would make me an offer. To take me off the rack…if I put souls on…if I started the torturing." Beth stroked her hands up and down my back as I looked over at Sam, tears in my eyes.

"Every day I told him to stick it where the sun don't shine. For thirty years I told him. But then I couldn't do it anymore. I couldn't. And I got off that rack," I confessed, sucking in a shuddering breath and feeling the heartache settle in my chest like it had that day, the burden I had placed on my soul, the tears that had refused to fall.

"God help me baby, I got right off it, and I started ripping them apart," I said softly to Beth while Sam looked at me with anguish.

She nodded, looking up at me with nothing but love in her eyes. "I lost count of how many souls... the – the things that I did to them." I felt a tear run down my face, and Beth reached up to brush it away with her soft touch.

They watched me, Beth wiping away a couple more tears that managed to escape as I thought about the decade I'd spent down there torturing other souls. There was no judgement in her eyes, only love and somehow that healed me just a little. I looked up at Sam and he was watching me with the same expression, he was worried.

"Dean… you held out for thirty years," she said softly.

"Yeah," Sam said with a nod. "That's longer than anyone would have." It didn't feel like it was enough, I should have held out until they rescued me, I felt weak, and sick from the things I had done in the decade where I'd taken up the knife. I sniffed back a couple of tears and shook my head, placing a kiss on Beth's forehead before pulling away.

"How I feel... this... inside me... I wish I couldn't feel anything, guys. I wish I couldn't feel a damn thing." I said and with a shake of my head, I walked away, leaving them at the car and striding down to the banks of the river next to which we were parked. I stared out at the shining water under the mid-day sun and I sighed heavily.

After a few minutes I felt Beth's hand on my back and I looked down at her.

"I'm not the man you married, Beth," I said quietly, feeling shattered inside.

"Yes, you are," she said firmly, turning me to face her. "I saw it, I saw you take that first step," she said softly, cupping my cheek in her hand. "I was there, right there with you Dean."

I sighed another shaky breath and leaned my forehead into hers and the horror of what she was saying settled through me. I knew she'd seen a lot, I hadn't known she had witnessed that very moment. "I wish you'd never seen that," I said.

"But I did, and I'm still here, and I'll always be here. You did this to save me, and I will help you carry this Dean. It is as much my burden to bear as it is yours," she said, but I couldn't let her do that.

"No, no it's mine," I said and she sighed at me in frustration.

"Okay, have it your way, but I'm not walking away, and it doesn't make me love you any less. Dean, you lasted thirty years, and it's my fault, I should have gotten you out sooner, I failed you."

"No." I answered, shaking my head.

"I know it hurts, God, I can't even imagine what you're feeling Dean, not really. But if you can take even half the love I have for you, it will ease it. Let me love you, don't shut me out," she looked up at me, her brown eyes swimming with unshed tears.

"If you stop feeling, you will stop feeling the good things too, and I couldn't bear to see that, because you have so much love in your heart, so much compassion for other people. You have given your life helping others, and you inspire me to do the same every day," she said, her words a soothing balm for my soul.

"Don't give up Dean, we're through the worst of it, aren't we?" She asked and I nodded, things had been getting better until I'd seen Alastair.

"But Alastair…the dreams…last night I could have really hurt…"

"But you didn't, and we worked through the flashback. The dreams… we'll deal with them," she cut in, stroking her hand along my cheek. "Together."

"Together," I said softly.

"Yeah," she said with a smile. "I love you Dean, you're not getting rid of me that easy."

"Damn, and here I had the opportunity to hook up with an angel," I said with a grin and she rolled her eyes.

"Yeah, but I know what you like," she said.

"But she was a forbidden angel," I teased and Beth laughed.

"Oh please! There's nothing naughtier than a preacher's daughter, and I think I proved it last night," she said with a grin, reaching down a hand to stroke along my groin, stirring me to attention.

"Mmmm, you make a good point." I said with a grin.

"Baby, I haven't even started making my point," she said with a wink. "Just you think about that while we're sitting in the next diner we come across, having lunch, and I slide my hand down your thigh while Sam is engrossed in his computer…" I groaned, feeling my cock harden just at the thought of it.

"And then tonight…" Beth continued, raising an eyebrow at me. "We can get our own room, and I can really start showing you some of those things you like so much…" I grinned at her, reaching out to grasp the back of her head, lifting her chin up so I could stare into her eyes.

"Well, until then, there is something I like from you that I can take right now," I said quietly and she bit her lip.

"Oh?"

"Mhmmm," I said with a nod, and I leaned in, sliding my lips along hers and brushing them softly, my tongue snaking out to lick along her bottom lip before sliding in to meet hers, teasing her and drawing out that little moan I loved so much. "There it is…" I said with a chuckle and she giggled.

"Don't laugh at me," she said, but I was already claiming her mouth again, deepening the kiss and loving her in one of the best ways I knew how. She sighed softly and leaned in to the kiss, wrapping her arms tightly around me, and just in that moment I felt like maybe everything would be all right, and then I flicked my tongue across hers quickly once more, chuckling when I got the much coveted moan out of her again. God I loved that moan, and I was going to be hearing it a lot tonight if I had my say. I just had to make it through her teasing at lunch; but that was okay because two could play at that game, and she was playing with the master.


Three Days Later

Sam's POV

There was a knock at the door, I glanced up and frowned, it was open and the only person who would be calling in this late in the evening would be Dean or Beth, I didn't exactly have friends. Thing was, they would just let themselves in. Getting up, I opened the door and froze when I saw the woman standing in the hallway. She looked up at me, deep brown eyes catching mine, and she flashed that sexy little alluring smile which always got me.

"Hey Sam, gonna invite me in?" Ruby asked. I hesitated, and she saw it, the smile falling instantly from her face as she watched me.

"What's wrong?"

"You should know," I said, but I knew as soon as I said it that it wasn't a fair statement.

"Oh, sure, yeah that's clear," she said sarcastically, crossing her arms. "Look if you don't want to see me…"

"Come in," I said quickly as she started to turn.

"That's more like it," she said with a smirk, walking past me.

"It's only because I want an explanation, Rhuddem ," I said as she passed me and I saw her flinch at the use of the name.

"What did you call me?"

"Rhuddem…" I said, following her into the main room. "It is your name, right?"

"Where did you hear that?" Ruby asked warily, looking me over.

"I heard it the day I went after Lilith. Those two demons attacked, one of them called you by the name," I pointed out.

"You never brought it up before now," Ruby said, not denying it, but not admitting to the name either.

"It wasn't until I told Dean that some of it came to light."

"Dean," Ruby snorted, shaking her heard. "You're gonna believe him? He hates me!"

"And with reason!" I said loudly. "What you did to our sister?! To her father?! You have a lot of nerve! I ought to send you back to Hell right now!"

"Sam…"

"No, Ruby, Dean's not lying, I've heard the name come out of Beth's mouth enough too. He was right to tell Beth to stay away from you, we all should be." I said, fuming. I couldn't believe that I felt as conflicted about this as I did, this should be black and white, clear-cut.

"Sam, please," Ruby said, moving toward me. "At least let me…"

"Explain?" I asked and she nodded.

"How are you going to explain what you did?" I asked, shaking my head.

"Just like a typical man," she retorted, crossing her arms and scowling. "You have no idea what I've been through. How I got to this point. What I still go through! Everything I've done for you, I thought we meant something to each other… but I guess I was wrong. Wouldn't be the first time, it's how I got in this mess in the first place."

She turned to leave and I looked up at her, my breath catching. I was angry, but I didn't really want her to go, I sighed and saw her hesitate as she reached for the door.

"You want to elaborate on that?" I asked, and she turned around to look at me, tears in her eyes.

"What Dean said, it is true. I did kill Patrick, and I … I regret it now. I was out of control, free of Hell for the first time in six thousand years, and I was on a vendetta to pay back the O'Malley's for everything they did to me."

"The O'Malley's?" I asked, and she nodded.

"Yes," Ruby sighed, and sat down heavily on the couch, running a hand across her eyes. "I was human once Sam, I told you that. I was beautiful, kind, caring… I had loving parents. And I was in love." She looked up at me, her lip quivering a little. "His name was Aengus O'Malley, I don't know where he fits in to Patrick and Beth, great-great-great grandfather or something I guess."

I took a seat in the armchair near her, nodding for her to continue.

"Aengus and I met years after he was already married, and it was electric…" She smiled as she thought about him and I felt my heart twist a little, I'd felt like that about Jess. "But this was the dark ages, and Catholics didn't divorce, they stayed in unhappy marriages, making babies, and being miserable."

"So you had an affair with him?" I asked, and she shook her head.

"No," Ruby answered. "He wanted to, but I refused. I didn't think it was fair to his wife, who loved him just as much. But we loved each other dearly, and so I did what I could to keep his family safe."

"Safe?"

"This was during the time of the black plague, hundreds of thousands of people were dying all around us. I had some skill with healing using herbs, and I was able to keep it away from us. But Aengus's little girl came down with an illness. It wasn't the plague, but it was just as deadly…" Ruby's voice drifted and she looked over at the wall, her eyes taking on a faraway look. I waited, not wanting to interrupt, I found myself thinking about the woman she was talking about, Rhuddem, a woman in love with an unobtainable man.

"There was a rumour going around the village," Ruby continued suddenly, taking a deep breath. "A witch lived in the woods and would grant miracles. I was a good Catholic, I didn't approve, but I was desperate. I loved Aideen, I didn't want to see her die… so one night as the child lay dying, I went into the woods and I made a deal."

"A deal?" I asked, looking up at her. "She was a demon?"

Ruby nodded. "She gave me ten years. I told myself if I was only going to get ten years to live, and I was already damned, I could simply act on my love for Aengus, take what I wanted so badly." She sniffed back a couple of tears and shook her head, rolling her eyes and smiling sarcastically. "That didn't work out so well."

"What happened?" I asked quietly, almost scared to know. Ruby looked at me with stern eyes, frowning.

"I underestimated his love for me. I was not greater than his love for God. When he found me curing the child, he accused me of witchcraft, and he and his brother dragged me away, tied me to a tree, and burned me alive."

I grimaced. Having seen many creatures die by fire, I knew it wasn't pleasant.

"So my ten years? Gone, in an instant. Instead I found myself in Hell before my time, and I was ripped apart, tortured, and slowly over the centuries they took every little shred of humanity from me. The only thing I had to hold on to was the knowledge that one day I could get topside, out of the Pit, and I would have my revenge."

"Patrick and his family."

Ruby nodded. "It took me fifty years once I got out, but I found them all. Every single descendant from Aengus O'Malley who was living. I slaughtered them all like cattle. Patrick's parents, I killed them too, but the boy wasn't with them at the time. He was with family friends, your grandfather, Samuel Campbell. Samuel took the boy in, and for a while I thought I had to let him go – Samuel was a hunter, and while I didn't think he'd raise the boy in the path…"

"You were wrong," I said quietly.

"I was… about many things. So I let the boy grow up, better to torture him later. In the meantime I discovered an uncle and his daughter, living estranged from the family. Samuel found him too, getting in touch so that Patrick could be reunited with the family; led me straight to them. They didn't even see me coming. I possessed the little thirteen year old cousin first, killed the uncle, and had Patrick walk in on me as I was turning the knife on the girl."

I had nothing to say, shaking my head.

"He caught me by surprise. Here's a sixteen year old kid who tackled me to the ground and then exorcised me. Not before I learned the truth however. That my death had never left Aengus, he felt guilty about it, but not enough to forgive me. Instead he started to learn about witches and consequently other things that go bump in the night …"

"He became a hunter, Beth's family… this is a… family business?" I asked, astonished at the information.

"One of the oldest," Ruby said with a nod. "Pretty little Beth was the only one who didn't know about it, Daddy kept her away from it after what happened to your mother."

"Did you kill Beth's mother?" I asked, suddenly curious.

"No. But she didn't die in a car crash either," Ruby said, raising an eyebrow at me.

"Then what?"

"I don't know, another demon, another story. But I heard whispers…"

I shook my head, not wanting to believe a word she said. But there was so much that sounded true.

"So… Patrick sent you back to Hell?" I asked, prompting her for more information.

"He did. And I was there for another… well for me it was a good… three thousand years or so. You can imagine after seeing Dean, and he was only down there for what? Forty years? I was down there for another thirty-five years your time, on top of the timeI'd already spent down there – which is like sixty thousand years in Hell. By the time I got out again, I'd have skinned a bus load of children alive just to be free. I wasn't human, I wasn't even close." She looked at me as she said this and I could see something different in her eyes now, I saw regret.

"What changed?"

"You changed me," she confessed, looking at me.

"Me?"

"Yeah, well, kinda. I killed Patrick, and I would have killed Beth except for that devil's trap Patrick managed to catch me in. Your father exorcised me, and then after another stint in Hell I get topside, I decide to finish what started – Beth is the last of the O'Malley's. I wasn't about to let her have another baby and continue that line. So I hunt her down, and she's with Dean, and you. Then I start to see things a little differently, you're hunters too, and … well, I became captivated by you Sam. I always have been."

I rolled my eyes at her. "You seriously expect me to believe you?"

"Believe it, don't believe it. I don't really care. You know how I feel about you, I think I've made it pretty clear," Ruby said and my mind flashed to many nights where we'd not just been having sex, but making love, and I frowned at how uncomfortable that made me.

"Yeah, well, that was before I knew what you did to my sister," I said softly.

"You've done far worse," Ruby snapped at me and I nodded, looking at her.

"I have, and I have a lifetime of making that up to her, of making that right."

"Are you going to kill me to make it right?" Ruby asked and I felt sick just thinking about it.

"No, Dean says there's no need for Beth to know while you pose no threat to her, it would only upset her. But, keep away from us Ruby, if you know what is good for you."

"Sam…"

"No. I mean it Ruby, we're done. I can't do this anymore." I said, standing up and pacing the room. She stood, watching me with sadness in her eyes. Finally she sighed and walked toward me. I stopped and trailed my eyes along her jawline to her mouth as she stopped in front of me.

"Then I guess this is good bye," she said, looking up at me and I nodded, not trusting my voice to speak. She leaned up on tip-toes and kissed my cheek, pulling back and shaking her head. Without any further words she turned and closed the door as she left. I let myself sink down to one of the beds, my head resting in my hands as I fought with the conflict inside of me.

The world had suddenly gotten harder to understand than it had in the past. I'd always been one to see the shades of grey, Dean the one who stuck to the clear-cut black and white of life. Now it seemed reversed, and I was cutting someone important out of my life, while Dean worked with her to achieve his own ends. It didn't make sense, and I was confused by my feelings, I lay back on the bed and stared at the ceiling. Maybe if I got some sleep things would be clearer in the morning, tomorrow was, after all another day, and we had the chance to start out fresh.


AUTHOR'S NOTES


Song is "What Lies Beneath" by Breaking Benjamin


I apologise for the long wait in between updates, I've been away at a women's festival presenting and working for a good five days, and then back to work straight away as soon as I got back, landing in the middle of an audit. Today was my first day off since the festival and I had to move house! Finally! I'm hoping my internet and phone get sorted out there tomorrow without too much fuss, and then I can get into writing some more.


I have a tonne of ideas for some more originals coming out, hoping to squeeze a few in around the canon updates. At this point I'm more inspired to write the originals than rewrite the canon storyline LOL I have Jefferson's back story to tell too which is itching to come out, I'm hoping to get stuck into all this once I've settled into the new house a bit.


Hope you enjoyed this chapter and I'll at least have a short chapter up very soon all going according to plan – I need to tie a few loose ends up before moving into the next part of the story.


There was a short chapter posted to The X-Files story covering The Wedding Night too for those who are interested and might have missed it. Sometimes I write smut just for the heck of it, if it doesn't fit into the story, that's where you'll find it among all the snippets from the regular storyline too.


Please leave a review, you know I love them and they inspire me to keep writing!