Title: Aftermath (Part Five)
Author: fatedtoflames (DJ)
Pairing: John Constantine/Chas
Rating: Strong PG-13, may go up later
Spoilers Movie: Lots.
Summary: Chas had a family, of course, though John had never made an attempt to get to know them. But after Chas's death, secrets are revealed that may force John to get to know them better than he'd ever wanted…and force him to protect them from forces beyond their control.
X-Posted to three Constantine communities(total) and my private LJ.


John was god damn frustrated.

He'd been in the church's library for seven hours, researching, trying to figure out what kind of demon he was dealing with. He'd asked around, looked at all the books under the sun, but all to no avail.

He needed Chas.

He cursed, shoving another book away and covering his face with his hands. The last thing he wanted to do was go crawling back to Chas, after what he'd said to him and the things that kid had done for him. It was as bad as John Constantine saying 'please'…which he never did.

But he didn't know a thing about this library- he'd been lucky to find the books he did find, and even then they weren't of any help. He could speak Latin easily, but a couple of these other ancient languages…the only person in a five hundred mile radius who spoke those were Chas, now that Beeman was dead. Beeman had only taught Chas, the boy was the only student who learned fast enough and worked hard enough for him to tolerate.

"God dammit…" He muttered, standing up and heading for the door. He had to find that angel, like it or not. But where would he go to look for an angel?

In twenty minutes he found himself standing in Midnite's club, trying to convince the man to use his numerous psychic gifts to call the angel to them. The smell of smoke made him yearn to pull out a cigarette, but he pushed aside the urge for now. Later he would indulge, but not in front of Midnite when he'd told the man he was most definitely quitting.

"Because you're a friend," Midnite finally said, slowly, his every word calculated. "I will tell you where he is. I cannot call to him, though…it's not within my right to call on an angel of God without very good reason."

John nodded, wanting to say something snarky about Midnite's right to ruin a perfectly good two hundred dollar shirt but holding the comment back. The man was helping him, after all.

Midnite closed his eyes, all the power and energy in the room seeming to focus, draining from the colors and lights like a dimming light bulb. After a few moments he let out a deep breath, and his eyes opened and focused once again. It was like a rubber band snapping back; John could practically feel the room regain energy as Midnite let go of using it.

"The cemetery," he said, his voice low. "His grave. The boy is upset, to say the least."

"Yeah…I know."

"Even after he dies you cannot give him the satisfaction of knowing how proud you are of him?"

"I don't need this lecture right now, Midnite…"

"Later then. Go do what you must."

John nodded, turning and walking out, feeling his heart sink at the thought of an angel at his own grave, distraught. He had no idea what he said would hurt the kid that badly, not now that he had Heaven.

The night air had cooled, and John shivered and pulled his coat tighter around himself before hailing a cab. Something made him nervous tonight, something akin to the feeling he got in the presence of a half-breed demon. But the driver was a normal driver, and the ride completely normal, though he felt a pang of longing at the missing scent of licorice in the cab. He hated licorice, always had, but every time he mentioned it to Chas the boy had thrown back the fact that he hated the smell of smoke.

Now he would give anything to have one wiff of the red candy, to see Chas in the front seat wearing that ridiculous cap and chewing thoughtfully on a strand of the licorice.

The cab pulled up at the gates to the cemetery, and John barely remembered to pay the driver as he got out. He took a deep breath and shivered again, wondering if Chas was dressed warmly enough for this weather.

God, you're not his mother. Don't start with that.

The sun seemed to slip below the horizon right as he stepped through the gates, and he headed straight back on the familiar path to the boy's grave. After all, he'd been there a few times, even paid for Chas's headstone (though he made the man who made it swear to secrecy on who paid so Chas's family wouldn't know).

He saw a shadowy figure ahead, and he squinted, trying to see clearly who it was.

"Chas?"

In half a second red eyes turned on him and he had a demon leap at his chest, and he had to sidestep fast. The creature landed on all fours and spun around, more animal-like than human, and John suddenly caught sight of the white feathers stuck on the creature's claws.

"Damn bitch," he muttered, and the thing growled and leapt at him again, but it was knocked aside mid-jump by a sudden flash of light. It whimpered and scrambled for footing as the white light continued like a strobe, and even John had to close his eyes for a few moments, temporarily blinded by the intensity of the light.

"You've got a lot of fuckin' nerve, John, you know that, right?" He heard a familiar voice say as the light faded and the demon literally disintegrated where it stood. John opened his eyes to find Chas standing there, in white clothing, but still looking as warm as a sun-lit beach. He practically fucking glowed, even as his wings folded and faded.

"You're here to ask for help, aren't you John?" Chas asked harshly, and John stuttered for a few moments.

"Look, Chas…I'm sorry about earlier, I was out of line…"

A snort. "I'll say."

"I was wrong, okay? I admit that. And…I need your help."

"You're fuckin' out of luck."

John blinked a few times. That was one thing he was not used to- being refused what he wanted. Usually in such a case the first thing he would do is pull out a weapon, but he had the feeling that wouldn't exactly help his case.

"But…we're talking about your sister here, Chas. Your sister."

"Oh, but the great John Constantine doesn't need my help. He can figure it out just fine on his own," Chas snapped.

"God, I said I was sorry, what more do you want, for me to get down on my knees and beg?"

Chas smirked and his eyes flashed gold. "Actually, that sounds about right."

John's face paled drastically, and he scowled. "You can't be fuckin' serious."

"No groveling, no help. That's the deal, take it or leave it, John."

John couldn't believe this. This was absolutely humiliating and Chas knew it.

But he needed Chas's help.

Only for you, he thought as he sank down to his knees with a sigh. He looked up at Chas, his expression a mixture of embarrassment, anger, and frustration.

"I'm sorry for what I said. I really need your help with this, Chas."

"And?"

"I'll…I'll do my best to not do it again."

Chas puffed up like a proud peacock. "The magic word?"

John gritted his teeth. "Please."

Chas smiled. "Of course I'll help you, John. Let's go catch ourselves a demon."

Chas started walking, every gesture and expression full of mischief. And as John stood up to follow, he smiled too.