Title" Hunters: Light Pointe
Summary: Sam, Dean and Jack head to California for a gig and Sam deals with the impending one year anniversary of Jessica's death.
Disclaimer: Sadly I still own nothing except the images in my head, dirty or otherwise.
Enjoy the story, reviews are like chocolate or knives, can't have too much of any of them.
Sam unlocked the door to his apartment and trudged inside tiredly. His body was sore in ways it hadn't been in the four years since he left home and hunting behind. He called for Jess as he walked through the darkened house. Sam spotted a plate of cookies on the table with a note form his girlfriend. He took one with a smile and walked to his bedroom, it was good to be home. He heard a bath running, thought about seeing if Jess wanted some company but the second he sat on the soft mattress he collapsed backward in exhaustion.
Sam smiled at nothing and felt himself start to drift off, making a mental note to call his brother when he woke up.
Something warm dripping onto his forehead brought him out of his half asleep state. He brought his hand to his forehead feeling more drops of whatever it was hit him. Sam cracked open his eyes in confusion and rubbed his hands over the dark sticky substance, the half second it took him to register it as blood would be the longest of his life. Sam's gaze shot upward to his worst nightmare.
"No!" He screamed convulsing as he saw Jessica, His Jess pinned to the ceiling grotesquely. He reached up calling her name as she burst into flame. He barely felt the hand on his arm pulling him forcefully off the bed.
All he saw was the blood, fire and the accusation in her beautiful blue eyes. You could have saved me, they mocked cruelly.
Sam woke with a start, shutting his eyes against the too bright sun filtering through the car window. When the spots dotting his vision faded he cracked his eyes open slowly till they adjusted to the morning sun. He looked around to find himself alone in the front seat of the car, parked at a pump in front of a gas station. Someone's humming made him look out the back windshield to see Jack pumping the gas with one hand tapping out a tune to go along with her humming. Dean was nowhere in sight.
Sam shook his head trying to calm his breathing, going through the motions of talking himself down from the nightmare. He let the panic wash over him, shutting out all thought till it subsided. It was a constant in his life, he'd wake up from the nightmares and talk himself back to the present; reminding himself it had already happened, even channeling his brother when it was too much telling him that it wasn't his fault. Sam opened his eyes and saw his brother leaving the gas station with a bag in one hand and a tray holding three coffees in the other. Sam shot out of the car before he could think and walked rapidly to his brother.
"Mornin Sammy." Dean greeted. Sam grabbed him by the arm and pulled him along ignoring the sounds of protest Dean made.
"What's wrong Sam?" Dean asked as Sam led him around the side of the gas station. He looked Sam over, noting the sheen of sweat over his face even though it wasn't all that hot and fro once Sam wasn't wearing one of those hoodies he loved so much. Dean let himself be led around the building with growing concern for the younger man. Finally when they were out of sight Sam let him go and turned his back on Dean who lowered the bag and coffee to the ground and watched his brother clench and unclench his fists, his breathing becoming erratic. Dean shook his head sadly, another damn nightmare.
"Sam." Dean said inquiringly. He waited patiently for Sam to say something. It wasn't a premonition or he wouldn't have pulled Dean back there away from prying eyes, meaning this was personal.
"Tell me again Dean." Sam said in a small voice that reminded Dean of when he was little and afraid of the thing in closet.
"Its not your fault. It was never your fault." Dean said the words he knew by heart and had been trying for over a year to convince Sam of. It had become another routine for survival. Sam woke screaming for his love and Dean reminded him it wasn't his fault she was gone, when Sam couldn't convince himself of this fact.
"I wasn't dreaming about it for awhile. I wasn't reliving that night all the time and now its every other night. Its like I'm there again and I can't get out." Sam said with grief choke hoarseness.
"Sam-" Dean hesitated. He didn't really think Sam needed to be reminded it was almost that time of year. They were only a week away from Halloween and a little longer from t he anniversary of Jessica's death.
"I know. I know." Sam said rubbing the bridge of his nose trying to blink back the tears filling his eyes. He thought he'd come so far since then, when his grief threatened to bury him in the beginning though he repressed it as much as he could. But the closer it got the larger the hole in his chest seemed to grow.
Dean was watching him dreading what he had to say next. Sam hinted in the past few days that he wanted to be as far form California as humanly possible during That Time, but dad called while Sam was sleeping and told Dean to get to the West Coast. A routine haunting, it looked like, but the poltergeist was getting more and more violent so they had to get their asses over there and take care of it.
"Sam we got a gig." Dean said. Sam turned to him with red rimmed eyes and Dean considered calling their father back and saying it was a no go.
"Where?" Sam asked with dread like he already knew what Dean was going to say.
"Lighthouse at a place called Pigeon Pointe." Dean said. Sam hung his head, he knew the place, he'd even been there once, on a beach trip with some friends.
"I can call dad, tell him we found something more important." Dean said. Sam swallowed and shook his head. He walked past Dean to find the men's room.
Dean ran a weary hand over his face letting himself feel the bite of anger on his brother's behalf. He felt sure John hadn't forgotten what time of year it getting to, but why would he send them there if he remembered. Dean sure as hell remembered how far from Kansas dad always made sure to be when it getting towards the anniversary of the night mom died. And why the hell do they call it an anniversary anyway? Dean thought scowling. There wasn't anything to celebrate.
He let himself sink into that old anger till he felt he could compose himself enough to head back the car. Dean picked up their breakfast and walked around to the pumps. Jack was sprawled across the trunk with her eyes closed, looking like the picture of blissful unawareness as a couple of younger guys in an SUV watched her. But Dean saw the slight flick upward as he approached and knew that the hand that was in her pocket was tracing the lines of a throwing knife lazily. She, like him and Sam, was anything but unaware. He almost laughed when one of the college aged boys who'd been about to approach her stopped hesitantly in his tacks when Dean put the coffee down on the hood next to Jack.
She opened one eye, humor sparkling in it and sat up stretching like a cat. The guy eyed Dean warily and decided to go back to his buddy.
"Scaring away my fun." Jack pretended to pout. She slid off the car and claimed one of the cups of black coffee.
"Gas tanks full. Where's Sam?" Jack asked.
"Right here." Sam said coming up on them. Dean handed him a cup of coffee without comment. If Jack saw the subtle color around his eyes that indicated his small burst of emotion, she didn't say anything, But then if she did notice she wouldn't say anything either, that wasn't their way. Instead she patted him on the shoulder, her way of saying something but he didn't really know what and walked around to climb in the back seat.
"You know it wouldn't kill ya to get Starbucks every now and then." Jack said as they pulled away from the station, breaking the heavy silence.
"A. We can't afford five bucks for one cup of coffee and B. No way in hell am I drinking some frou frou half caf mocha what the hell ever drink." Dean told her.
"Too manly for a decent cup of coffee Dean?" Jack purred.
"Damn straight." Dean said smirking.
"I'll bet Sam is secure enough to drink something that doesn't taste like street tar in liquid form." She teased though she was guzzling down her own cup of street tar.
"Sam is a girl." Dean replied simply. Sam felt his lips twitch upward, fighting a smile.
"So am I, and I need decent coffee." Jack argued. "You see, unlike you Dean I'm sure enough of my innate badassness-" Sam let out a laugh at that, she grinned at him in the rearview mirror. "To march into Starbucks and order an extra large Vanilla Frappe."
"I think its called Venti." Sam pointed out.
"Okay I'll drink the coffee but there's no way in hell I'm using those names for the sizes." Jack said frowning. Sam laughed for the first time in a few days and saw a look cross between his brother and friend.
Sam savored the temporary levity, sipping at his own cup. It wouldn't last, every mile took him closer and closer to where he really didn't want to be.
AN: So begins another tale in the Hunters 'verse. Did you miss me in the oh I don't know half hour since I last posted :D. Stay tuned for Sam Angst, ghosts and the continuing search for decent coffee on the road with no cash.