Title: Lunches to Make and Kids to Drive to School
Pairing: Cassie/Dean
Rating: K+
Summary: Cassie enjoys her mornings to herself but when a 1967 Chevy Impala pulls up, her morning is about to change. Future fic.
Disclaimer: I don't own the characters or the universe they live in.

At a quarter to five in the morning, Cassie was the only one awake in the household. She treasured these few early morning hours, her husband and children still fast asleep, she had to herself. She'd sit in her La-Z-Boy, sipping her coffee,and look out the big picture window. No matter the season, winter or summer, there was always something of interest to look at. This fall morning it was a handsome man leaning against the hood of a 1967 Chevy Impala, waiting.

Cassie hadn't seen or heard the car pull up. It was quite possible that the driver had been waiting there all night. Though she hadn't seen the driver or the car in years, she had recognized both easily. She had a childish urge to dart back into the kitchen and pretend she wasn't home, though she knew that was a futile effort. He was a hunter, after all. Besides, there were kids to get to school and a job to get to. She couldn't hide inside for the rest of the day and hope he went away. He'd catch her eventually.

After taking a deep breath and wrapping her house coat tightly around her, as though it would offer some sort of protection, she went out onto the front porch. The man saw her at once and pushed off the car, walking over to the porch, with a slow, easy gait.

Cassie's chest tightened. It did not bode well that the Impala had arrived unannounced or that the driver was all alone.

He was older, Cassie could see, his soft, gentle eyes had hardened some and he wore his hair long and shaggy around his ears, thought his beard was trimmed. He stood at the bottom of the porch and even though Cassie was standing on the second to top step, they were eye to eye.

"Sam." Cassie greeted.

"Cassie." Sam replied. His voice had roughened some as well and Cassie found herself suspecting alcohol, though she didn't smell any on his breath.

"This is for you." He said quickly, thrusting something into Cassie's unsuspecting hand.

Cassie slowly untangled the bundle and dangled it out on her finger. She forced herself to swallow. She recognized this necklace as well as she had recognized Sam and the car. It was the protection charm Dean always wore, even during sex. She used to tease him about it, all those years ago.

Cassie looked up at Sam, the question on her lips, the answer in the tears threatening to spill out of Sam's eyes.

"He wanted you to have it." Sam said with a shrug, "I'm sorry."

"Thank-you," Cassie replied, closing her hand tightly around the necklace, Though I should be the one who's sorry. You were his brother, after all. I was just the girl who fell in love with him.

She wanted to ask how it had happened. A monster? A ghost? Some nut with a gun? A heart attack? But really, did it matter? And did she want to put Sam in the position of having to relive the situation? Because there was no doubt that Sam had been there at the end, whatever that end had been.

"Would you like to come in, for coffee?" Was all Cassie could manage to offer in terms of condolences, "We have regular and decaf."

Sam was shaking his head no before Cassie had finished the question.

Ghosts to hunt. Monsters to slay. Demons to exorcise, his weary smile said.

His mouth said, "I'm on a job."

"Okay." Cassie replied, wondering just how long Dean had been dead, how long it had it taken Sam to get up the nerve to come here, "But come by after you're done. Or call, please. I'd like to talk."

"Sure thing." He replied with a vague wave, walking back to the car and driving away.

Cassie waited until the Impala had disappeared completely from view before heading back inside. She slipped the charm into her robe pocket and began to start making lunches. She could hear the shower running upstairs, which meant her husband was up and it would soon be time to get the kids ready.

She was half-way through spreading peanut butter on white bread when she felt the tears running down her cheeks. She threw the butter knife into the sink and sat down at the kitchen table, just giving herself the time to deal with her sudden grief.

She hadn't seen Dean in years. Hadn't talked to him in years. They were over. And they both knew he'd die well before his time. That was the life he'd grown up in and the life he had chosen.

I could take the day off work. I have a couple grief days. Cassie thought before completely discarding the idea. If she did that, she'd have to explain just who she was grieving for. Dean was a secret she kept from most of the world. Dean Winchester had been more than an ex-boyfriend. He'd been Cassie's 'guy I was hoping to marry one day'. Only it had turned out he'd been some demon hunter and it just hadn't worked out. They never had been able to work things out.

Upstairs, the shower turned off. Cassie quickly stood up, hastily brushing tears away from her eyes. Now wasn't the time. There were husbands to greet, lunches to make, kids to drive to school, a job to go to. There wasn't time to grieve.

But later tonight she'll leave the kids home with Dad and take the car out for a drive, by herself. She'll stop at some pull over on the highway where she'll kill the engine and the radio. In the near darkness, she'll take out the charm and hold it tight. Remembering ever single memory she has for the man she once loved, still loves somewhere deep inside her because this would hurt do much if she didn't. And she'll cry every tear of grief she was ever afraid to shed for their failed relationship.

End