A/N: Happy Friday!
Chapter 22: A Conversation Between Sons
"You remind me of me, Dean, way back in my younger days," Abraham said as he lead the hunters into the living space above the shop. "Headstrong, passionate, eyes on what's right and that voice that makes you doubt. Like really doubt. Always on that path looking for what will make this life better until there is a little kid in the road, or a pack of them hiding the gorilla fighters in the swamps. And then, the choices don't seem as clear as they once did, now do they? Everything in us says, 'wait, stop, they're children'."
"You served?" Dean asked in shock at the revelations of the older gentleman.
"Sometimes you have to do the right thing, even if it doesn't seem all that right. Now I don't know if that war was right, looking back, but at the time it's what needed to be done, and I don't know if it's right to watch hunters try to end Henry or chase us away from home, or whatever, but to them, at the time, it was right. So yeah, I went to Vietnam. Yes, I protested other wars and wrong doings. Sure I sowed my wild oats and left home, married more times then I'd like to admit. I've lived lives, maybe not as many as Henry, but I've lived them and maybe I have some thoughts about you being here hunting, but I'm not going to run because running never actually gets you anywhere. What you're running from is always going to catch up to you."
"You're right," Dean said as he sat down at the kitchenette and watched Abraham with interest and intrigue.
"Drink this," He said and placed a cup in front of Dean.
"What is it?" Dean asked turning his nose up to it.
"Tea, if it doesn't calm you down and clear your head I'll get out the hard stuff and we'll try to cloud it instead of clear it."
"Can we just skip to the clouding part?" Dean asked. "A clear mind is a troubled mind."
"No, don't be rude, drink the tea," Abe ordered and then slid a plate with the berry filled pastry across the table to Dean. "This is what sets us apart form the monsters."
"Tea and pastries?" Dean asked confused.
"No, manners, a conscience, and the need, from time to time, to have a mental laps," Abe answered. "With what you've seen in your short life, you deserve the anxiety and the mood swings from time to time but we don't run, do we Dean?"
"Good, now what was all that about?" Abe asked as he sat down across the table from Dean.
"We have rules, more like guidelines, that we live by. Rules that we were taught by our father. We don't just kill things, that's murder, and the innocent are the innocent, but were do you draw the line when you know it's a monster and a monster's instinct is to do what it needs to do to survive?" Dean explained after a long pause of contemplating as he tried to decide whether or not to be completely honest with this man.
"Yes, that seems sane, good to know," Abe said and sipped at his tea. "And your mother, how was she taught?"
"I'm not really sure, we don't know the Campbells, never really did, and when we did meet the resurrected grandfather, he wasn't exactly the ideal role model after how we'd been brought up. Our Dad wasn't perfect, but he was a soldier and he knew, and so do we," Dean said.
"Saving people, humanity and whatnot, that's what matters most," Abe said. "Children are innocent."
"Kids are kids. No kid asked for what their parents made them into, or the situation they were born into. Sure, I've killed kids before, hell, I've almost been killed by kids so it turns into self defence but no kid deserves to be raised the way I was raised, or mom was raise, or the way monsters raise other monsters. That is just robbing a child of ever knowing innocence. And no kid is born a monster, or maybe they are genetically but they didn't asked for that."
"But were do you draw the line?" Abe asked but his question was more out of sympathy and agreement then looking for Dean to answer him. "Is this djinn killing for their child? Does that make it right? Is the kids being taught to kill because ultimately that is what it will have to do to survive?"
"Any way you slice it, you will always regret the kids," Dean said and sipped the tea.
"Yes, you do, but that's what kids are for. No parent in the history of humanity has not had regrets about how they parented. And no child has ever grown up not resenting their parents for some thing or other, but they move on and deal with it, and so should you."
"I'm just saying that we might have to kill a kid tonight. Are you prepared for that Abraham?" Dean asked.
"I've done it before," Abe confessed. "So has Henry, but at the end of the day, we've also saved them but you can't save them all Dean. I'm just one of the many Henry has saved and I'm grateful for the life I got out of it. But for everyone one of me, there are ten that slipped through his fingers, as I'm sure they have for you. The question is are you a casualty or a triumph?"
"I'm lucky to be alive, I know that, and whether you believe it or not I know that I've been brought back to life for some purpose. But I wouldn't call it a triumph. One day, who knows when, I'll bite it once and for all and all this will be over for me but if someone gave me a shot, one chance, to start all over again, I'd hope and pray that I don't live this life again," Dean confessed.
"If it's the divine plan, then I don't think you have any sway in the matter, and maybe that's what is happened to Henry. Maybe there is some divine plan at work for him too," Abe spoke in a philosophical way not really knowing how to react to Dean's revelations.
"Yeah, maybe," Dean said and nodded. "But I don't want to believe that same thing is true for Adam. That man is evil, he can't be a part of the plan."
"No, me either," Abe spoke and his tone told of his disgust for what the years had done to the other man.
"He's like a vengeful spirit, if he'd actually died. They just hang around getting angrier and angrier, more powerful and destructive, but they can be destroy. Adam can't, at this point, and so the twisted horrors are doing something terrible to that soul," Dean said.
"I guess it is what's to be expected when a soul is twisted and mutilated for so long. I'm afraid it will happen to Henry," Abe confessed.
"All the goodness in the world doesn't stop what to much time does to the spirit," Dean said. "It's all the shades of grey that cause all of our hindsight and regrets. I totally understand where you are coming from but he has you, Abe, and maybe you are what's saving him now."
"And when I'm gone?" Abe asked.
"You can only hope that you can find someone to take your place," Dean said.
"You mom mentioned magic, witchcraft, a way to live longer," Abe confessed.
"It could prolong your life, hundreds of years if you have the right mojo to make it work. Some people have it, some people don't and some can work a spell well enough. There aren't any guarantees and it does come with a price. Are you willing to take from others, what which you need?" Dean asked.
"You have to take?" Abe asked.
"Most of the time, to prolong a life, you have to take someone else's," Dean answered. "Can you take from the innocent Abraham?"
"There has to be another way," Abe said sadly.
"I'll look for you Abe, I'll ask around, hell I'll call in favours, but I've been around this all my life. I know what people do with these arts. You're not that man Abraham," Dean said. "And I don't want to be the man that makes you into that."
"Yeah, thanks, I understand," Abe said and sighed. "Maybe we do need a good strong whisky to cloud our troubled thoughts."
"I'm down if you are, this tea has done nothing for me," Dean said and let the darkness descend.