Authors: A. Jinnie and SG
Rated: R (language, mostly)
Pairings? None
Warnings: Spoilers through all aired episodes. "Shadows" AU.

Summary: "Sam would have fought us in the end, or John" – Meg spat the name, simmering with hatred – "would've stopped us." She gave Dean a devilish smile. "Now they won't." "Shadows" AU.

Chapter One

It took her two minutes to gag him. Sam was the college boy and Dad knew everything else, but Dean knew how to swear in every existing language on earth by the time he hit puberty. It was his gift to the world.

He shook his head, trying to clear it. Blood kept getting in his eyes. Combine that with the sight of Meg Masters behind the wheel of his precious Impala, and it all added up to an absolutely shitty day.

And then there was his current status as Kidnapped Pussy. Dean sighed as deeply as he could, trying to shift enough on his backseat to find at least some comfort. He was hardly short, unless he stood up next to Sam… which pissed him off to no end.

"We'll have to ditch the car," Meg told him, interrupting his internal rant. "But not yet. It's too soon."

She peered into the mirror, studying him. Dean cocked an eyebrow and stared right back. His leather jacket adorned her shoulders, and she smelled lightly of…

… the same perfume he vaguely remembered from his mother. Somehow, his glare grew more murderous.

"Like it, baby?" she asked him. "It's for you. Not really my thing. Not splashy enough, you know?" She giggled. Dean's head hurt. Here he lay, bound like a stuck pig in the backseat of his own car and gagged with his captor's warm pantyhose, and she wanted to discuss perfume preference?

"I went about it all wrong the first time," she continued. "Trying to get Sam to come with me that way. He's what we ultimately need, but he's not you, baby. Sam would have fought us in the end, or John" – Meg spat the name, simmering with hatred – "would've stopped us."

She gave Dean a devilish smile.

"Now they won't."

As a general rule, Sam didn't hate human beings. Sure, he'd gone a few million rounds with his father and Dean was a real pain in the ass, but he was still a Winchester. Humans were innocent in the family quest. They were to be protected at all costs. Period.

He staggered down the street towards their shoddy hotel room, face and nicked wrists dripping mercilessly, feeling like he'd gone a couple rounds against a cargo jet. And lost.

But even his abused body was secondary. Where the hell had she taken Dean?

This was all his fault, and he knew it. She'd played him from the beginning and he'd gone along like a gibbering teenager seeing a pretty girl for the first time. What use were his talents if they couldn't warn him of a trap he should've been able to see in his sleep?

He didn't even have to close his eyes. The horrible scene played out in his head like something out of nightmare. They had fought together, and each had taken turns distracting Meg so at least one could escape –-

And then it had all gone to hell. Meg had kissed him fully, moving far faster than any human. One shout of protest from his startled big brother, one "I'll see you soon, baby" from the thing wearing a woman's form, and both of them were gone. The Impala, too. He'd wondered about that at first – why would she make herself so easy to follow? – when he realized that was her intention.

This was all a deadly game, and Dean's death waited for Sam at the end. The Winchester blood in their parking spot had made that very clear.

Angrily, he kept walking. Innocent Human rule be damned; he shook uncontrollably. He was going to get his brother back and Meg was going to die horribly for daring to touch one hair on his head.

He just didn't know how yet.

They drove for six hours before she bled him for the first time.

Dean jerked awake, dimly aware of a fire in his shoulder. Awareness returning slowly enough for him to know he'd been drugged, the soft sound of Meg's chanting filling his ears, he forced his eyes open.

Grimacing, he resisted the impulse to squeeze them shut again. She twisted the dagger expertly in full circles, eyes dark with concentration. He might've screamed, but found he was now gagged with the remains of his shirt – more security, the clinical soldier in him distantly realized. Pantyhose wouldn't have held back this kind of agony.

And then she stopped. Her hand pressed against his back, lightly leaning him over the ornate cup she held. He couldn't help a moan as his blood obediently filled the inside. Fuck, that hurt!

Sam threw himself through the door, reeling. Dean's anguish – whether it was truly his or just Sam's guilt working overtime – tore through his left shoulder. For a moment, he wondered if something was actually tearing off his arm.

And then he realized he was bleeding anew. Gritting his teeth, he wrenched his shirt over his head. A sigil glowed on the wound, the same meaningless Zoroastrian image they'd found in the dead girl's apartment. The blood disappeared as quickly as it appeared, and Sam could hear Meg's mocking laughter, taste her lips against his own. "This is the beginning of the end for all of you," she whispered in his ear. And laughed again.

"Sam!" someone shouted.

The sigil remained a moment later, a despicable brand on pure skin. And then it, too, vanished. Just like Dean had. Just like everyone he'd ever known had.


Dean? Or was it – could it be –

"Samuel John Winchester!"

He blinked. This was not the reunion he had envisioned.


He seemingly flew to his youngest son's side, taking in the blood on his face. "It was a trap," John stated bluntly. Horror and pity warred in his mind. What did she do to you, Sammy? And for you to look like that, what did she do to your protector?

But Sam lowered his eyes and missed his father's worry. Fine with John. They didn't have time for it, anyway. Sam had wasted enough while he yelled for attention.

Dean would've understand that.

"Damnit, Dean," John bit out, frustrated. "You're better than this."

Sam cleared his throat, watching the man pace. As far as his father was concerned, he wasn't even there.

"Tell me what she said," John barked. "Did she have help? Did your research indicate any clues to her destination? What was her emotional state? How wounded was Dean? Was he able to resist her? Did he leave any trail? What was the gas status on the Impala? Who was she working for? Was she human? What kind of pre-op did you two – did Dean do? Anything that can help us?"

John buried the question about his eldest's health carefully. For all he knew, Dean had already died. But one look at Sam and he knew he'd never voice that suspicion. Dean would've coddled him and snapped him back to awareness with a few choice quips. Dean would've loved his little brother enough to know when to reassure and when to coax.

But John didn't know how. So he did the only way he knew to get that awful, lost expression off his boy's face, personal cost be damned.

"Sam! Answer me! Get yourself together and do your job."

The youngest Winchester stared at his father in disgust. Dean was missing, maybe even dead, and John thought being an emotionless marine jackass was the solution? Dean might've tolerated it. There was no way in hell Sam would.

"Dad – " Sam fumed, ready to give his father a piece of his mind.

A throaty chuckle interrupted. Sam whirled, raising a gun instantly – only to find that John had already imposed himself between whatever had just appeared in front of them, weapon cocked and ready.

"I'm so sorry," the bitch purred, a look of oozing concern on her face. "Am I interrupting?"

John reached backwards with his free hand, securing Sam behind him. "Where," he growled, "is my son?"

"Behind you, baby," was the innocent response. "Forgot already? Easy to do." She smirked. "As fighters go, he's a lover. No wonder you ran away from him. No wonder Dean was glad to escape him."

Sam couldn't help but flinch. Channeling his hurt and rage, he jerked out of his father's hold. And fired.

"Sam!" John snapped.

The bullet slammed innocuously into the wall behind her; the manifestation wasn't literal. John spared one glance to glare incredulously at him. Had four years away wiped that much knowledge from his brain?

"I've never done this before either," Meg mocked him. "Didn't have the power." She held up the same cup Sam remembered, filled with blood.

Dean's blood.

"Do now," she laughed cheerily.

Sam positively shook with fury, hardly noticing when it stood his hair on end. Physically thrown away from his son, John watched with wonder as the cabinet doors behind them slammed open and closed. The plaster on the walls trembled and paint fell from the ceiling with his every word.

"I am going to kill you for this," he informed her, the sheer calmness of his voice far more terrifying than anything John had ever seen before.

Meg turned her head, seemingly reacting to something father and son couldn't see. "Sorry, guys. My guest needs attention."

Just enough relief penetrated the burning inferno that was Sam for him to regain control. The room stopped tearing itself apart. He didn't miss the look of pride shining in John's eyes, and knew it wasn't for him and never would be, but honestly didn't care.

Dean was alive, and probably pissing her off. Nothing else mattered.

She smiled at them, and there was nothing remotely human in her features.

"So it begins."

And then she was gone.

To be continued.

I welcome any thoughts! Thanks for reading. :)