A/N: This sets up right at the end of Scarecrow and continues on between there and Faith. I wasn't going to post it, but then I figured...what the hey? You all haven't flamed me yet. Hope I'm not pushing my luck. ;)
Men of Faith, Prologue
When it's all said and done, Dean's ready to just hit the road. But before they can get in the car, Sam starts stuttering and shifting around from foot to foot. Dean settles back, crosses his arms, and leans against the hood, figuring that from the look on Sam's face, they'll be here another few hours at least.
"What is it, Sammy?"
Sam looks up at him, wide eyed. "Well, I, uh…it's just that…"
"Today please, junior." Dean snaps his fingers.
"You know, um, that car I st--, er, borrowed?"
"Yeah." Dean slaps him on the back. "That was good work, man. Nice car, too. Them new ones are shit to wire."
Sam smiles halfway, but lets it drop. "Yeah, well, it was kind of a long drive from there to here and I had some time to poke around the car..."
"And you found a winning lottery ticket?" Dean asks hopefully.
Dean shrugs. "Twenty bucks?"
"No, Dean. It was…in the trunk…there was--"
"No, no. Listen," Sam hisses. "Dean, there was a body in the trunk."
Dean reels back, nose scrunched up, and eyes incredulous. "A human body?"
"Naw, man. A car body."
"Oh." Dean nods.
Sam shoves his shoulder. "Of course a human body. What the hell else?"
"Well, I don't know, Sam. You're being all cryptic here."
"I am not. You're just not listening."
"You stole a car. Body in the trunk. Saved my ass." Dean sighs and points to himself. "Left the car somewhere. Police find it later, wiped clean of prints, yes? End of story."
Sam shifts from left foot to right. "Well, uh, not quite."
"Sammy? What'd you do?"
"I just, uh, I just put him in the trunk." Sam shrugs and forces a smile.
Dean stops. Slowly, slowly, he turns to look at the back end of the Impala. "My trunk?"
"Yes." Sam nods.
"Are you trying to tell me that John Doe dead guy is now in my trunk?"
"Care to explain why, brother?"
"'Cause I put him there."
"I couldn't just leave him, Dean."
"YES, Sam. YES, you could have."
"Dean, he's a person. I couldn't just leave him somewhere and hope somebody would eventually find him."
"So you figured he could just come along for the ride?" Dean asks hysterically. He turns away before Sam can answer and drops his arms in annoyance. "Aww, man."
"It's not that bad." Sam circles around Dean. "We'll just take him to a hospital or something."
"I hate to tell you, Sammy. But I don't think they're going to be able to do much for the guy."
"I know that!" Sam hisses. "But they could do DNA testing. Dental records. Send him home."
"Alright." Dean nods and crosses the few feet to the trunk. He opens it, cursing and holding his breath in preparation.
It just looks like a lumpy thing, maybe garbage or clothing covered in an old, gray, army blanket.
"He in there?" Dean asks, still holding his breath.
"Yeah." Sam nods grimly, taking note of Dean's reddening face. "Don't worry. Doesn't smell. He's, you know,…fresh."
"Oh, great." Dean exhales with a whoosh. He picks at a corner of the blanket like it's a living thing and pulls it back fast.
The man's face is turned away from them, but he's wearing a dingy suit and his hair is carefully combed and still in place. He's older, maybe fifty or so, and his skin is thick and sun-weathered brown.
"Think somebody killed him?" Dean asks.
"Why else would he be in a trunk, Dean?"
"Maybe 'cause you put him there, braniac."
"I found him in a trunk!"
"And put him in mine!"
"What was I supposed to do?"
Dean doesn't answer, leaning over to examine the man again. He glances up at Sam. "How'd you get him in here anyway?" he asks, genuinely curious.
"With the keys."
Dean rolls his eyes. "No kidding. I mean, rigor mortis, right? How'd you--" He makes a folding motion with his hands.
Sam shrugs. "I told you he was fresh."
"Guess so." Dean reaches over and tugs at the man's suited arm. "Well, he's stuck now."
"Don't mess with him, Dean."
"Oh." Dean smirks and straightens. "Sammy's afraid of a dead body?"
"No. It's just, somebody killed him. And he's so…fresh."
"As a new cut of beef," Dean agrees.
Dean laughs and pulls the blanket back over the man. "Alright, then." He closes the trunk. "Find a map, make some calls. There's got to be a hospital nearby."
"We'll have to wait until dark."
"Drop and run?"
Sam shrugs. "That, or med students making a transfer?"
Dean laughs and swings the driver's door open. "Never can do things the easy way, can we?"
The hospital parking lot is lit sparsely and crowded with cars, even at the midnight hour. Dean pulls up near the door and parks in a shadowed spot.
"We got this?" he asks.
"I think so." Sam nods and tugs at the neck of his pilfered scrub top.
"Got your ID?"
"Yep." Sam holds up the badge declaring him to be Irwin Fester, med student from St. Francis Medical Center in Bargersville, Indiana. He clips it to his shirt. "Nice name there, by the way."
"Hey, I was short on time." Dean grins.
"You were short on something," Sam mumbles.
Dean clears his throat. "Anyway. So, you got your ID. Go in, get the gurney and we'll get Freddy here situated." He gestures to the back seat where the body is now stretched out in a more appropriate position, rigor mortis having abated. Dean leans forward and peers out the window. "I'm back door man, here. Just get him in a hallway and leave him, Sammy, all right? No need to make it anymore complicated than it already is. Sound good?" He squints out into the dark.
Dean turns to Sam. "What's the problem?"
Sam is seated sideways, facing Dean, eyes wide and startled. He points numbly to the backseat. "Wasn't me."
Sam gestures to the back again and Dean finally turns, following his gaze.
A filmy apparition of the deceased is sitting up, leaning over the seat, face inches from Dean's own.
"Holy sh--" He jumps up, scrambling out of the car. "What the hell?"
Sam crawls out on the other side and leans over so he can see the ghost, sitting attentively in the backseat, partially on, or rather, inside of himself. His legs disappear back into his cold body.
"Sam!" Dean yells over the roof of the car. "There's a ghost in my car! Son of a... You know, a body was bad enough."
"Yeah." Sam straightens up and nods grimly. "This might be a problem."