So here's my next story attempt – I hope it's not too completely awful, it was just some random idea that popped into mind. Angst is to follow in buckets in further chapters, just so you know. Scenes in the woods with chainsaws are pretty much guaranteed for our boys. So please read and review! This is more of an introduction, it will get better. I hope.
Disclaimer: If I owned them, I wouldn't be sitting here alone in the middle of the night typing on my computer.
Riley stumbled through the dense weeds and underbrush, wincing repeatedly as long tendrils of sharp pine nipped at her flesh. The branches in her path were like fingers, reaching across the dusty dirt trail in which she traveled to purposely impede her progress. Night lay a blanket of dark black on the forest, with such darkness coming a biting cold. Sweat, however, laid in a sheen on top of her skin, pearly in the scarce moonlight – the result of the all-consuming fear that was currently gripping her soul. It was the fear that drove her, the fear that kept her running. It had to be, as she didn't think her body was in any sort of physical shape to sustain the intense workout she was submitting it to. Cuts and bruises displayed their prevalence across her arms, legs, and face – she could feel sticky, warm blood steadily making its way down her forehead. Her ankle was undoubtedly sprained, a particularly twisted vine had caused her to trip about a mile back. She supposed it was a mile, at least...since...since HE had showed up.
The sound of a chainsaw had been her first inkling as to the presence of something not so kind in nature at the campsite. She had felt unsteady all night, tossing and turning within the tight confines of the fleece sleeping bag. She first heard rustling, as if leaves were being brushed aside.
Matt had told her it was the wind.
Then she had heard footsteps, slowly making their way toward the tent.
Matt had told her it was a raccoon, scouring for scraps of food.
Then she saw fleeting shadows of a crouched figure, hurrying past the thin plastic barrier that separated her from nature.
And that's when Matt had gone outside, always the protective boyfriend.
And that's also when the chainsaw sounded, the screaming began, and she bolted – quickly unzipping the flap that closed the vinyl structure and running for her life.
She passed by what was unmistakably Matt's body, strewn in pieces across the damp soil and seeping rivulets of blood. She quickly clenched both hands across her mouth to stop herself from screaming; momentarily paralyzed by sheer devastation at her loss and terror at the situation. A coldness entered into her system, originating at her heart and then pumping to her extremities. It was a frigid, overpowering feeling – resultant of grief, a way that her body chose to cope with such a forceful blow.
It numbed her, spurred her into running when she thought she was too stricken with terror to move. The will to live always overrides any extenuating circumstances, and the body will to anything to hold onto precious life.
She began sprinting, gasping – whipping her head back to view the scene one final time upon exiting. There was no sign of the chainsaw murderer, no figure in the distance and no discarded weapon lying on the ground. Nor, she remembered with a start, were there any footprints in the wet and pliable soil at the campsite.
For a split second, her rational side pestered her mind, throwing questions at her brain. Who was this? What was this? How had they left so quickly?
Fear then subsequently regained control over her mindset. There was no time for consideration as to what had happened, only time to run from whoever – or whatever – it was that had done it. Only time to save herself.
Riley stopped suddenly as she came to a barrier in her path. It was a fallen tree, its height accounting for a full half of her own...and its length quickly ruling out the possibility of simply walking around the thing.
She stopped reluctantly, resting her hands upon the rough bark atop the massive log and breathing rapidly. Harsh wheezes made their way from her mouth, her ribs rattling with each soul-sucking breath. It seemed that stopping after such a period of blind running ceased the cold adrenaline coursing through her veins. For the first time, the tears came. And once they started, they wouldn't stop.
"Matt," she whispered silently. Saying his name sent her into a new fit of hysterics. She knew she should be continuing on, she knew she should just climb over this damned tree and run for her life. There was someone or something with a chainsaw out there, after all...but he wasn't fully real to her. She hadn't seen him, but she had seen her dead boyfriend laid in pieces at her feet. And that, that was what seemed real to her right now.
She knelt on her feet, resting her forehead against the side of the fallen tree and trying to summon the inner strength it would take for her to reach the other side of the obstacle.
She breathed slowly and steadily, trying to calm herself.
"You can do this, Riley," she repeated to herself. "Matt would want you to."
"I'M SURE HE WOULD, MY DEAR." A deep, echoing voice suddenly entered into her consciousness.
Terror struck Riley in that moment. She slowly raised her head, only to be greeted with the piercing stare of two gray, steely eyes – the only features that stood out in the black silhouette of the man that stood before her.
She opened her mouth to scream, but nothing but stuttering came from her lips. She backed away slowly, paralyzed again by an extraordinary fear.
The man raised a chainsaw in his hand, powering the machine and piercing the deafening silence of night with the whirring chain. Riley glanced suddenly to the side of the tree, starting as she realized that it had been cut cleanly down the middle – not stricken by a natural force.
It had all been a trap.
The man walked through the log – walked clean through it – and raised his deadly weapon in the air, above the cowering body of the terrified woman.
"TOO BAD YOU AREN'T MAKING IT OUT OF HERE."
Blood-curdling screams echoed that night through the woods, unheard by anyone except but by something not entirely human.
"What, dude? You look like you're watching a frog being dissected. It's kinda making me lose my appetite, actually."
Sam leaned back in the pleather booth of Roy's diner, answering Dean's question by sliding across the front page of the Colorado newspaper he was reading.
Dean shot Sam a confused look. "Find a case?"
Sam raised his eyebrows. "You tell me. Just read it."
Dean grabbed the newsprint, skimming quickly over the article Sam had pointed out. He winced first, then grimaced, then stopped reading altogether and pushed the article away.
"That's just wrong. It's like the Texas Chainsaw Massacre on acid, man."
"I know. But this is even weirder, dude. There's no evidence that a murderer was even present at the scene. The article makes it seem like the murderer was just really good at covering his trail or something, but it just rained - how did he cover his footprints, how did he not leave muddy fingerprints on the bodies? Discarded gloves? A weapon? A motive?"
"Yeah, not quite getting that part either. The bodies were just left there, right? They weren't even moved. Just...butchered...and cut in pieces with a chainsaw. Man, at least the Texas Chainsaw dude used the people for something. This 'no motive' thing doesn't really seem right."
"And using people for their skin does seem right?" asked Sam.
"Different strokes for different folks," shrugged Dean. "Dude was ugly, man. That probably sucked some big ass. Not that I'd know what that's like. What IS it like, Sam-o?
"Not even going to justify that with an answer, Dean. Be serious! You think this is a case?"
"Let's see...chainsaw murder in the woods, two dead, no evidence...yep, that's a case all right."
"We should check into the history of these woods. For all we know, this happens regularly or something. Could clue us into what this is about."
"Remind me never to live in the woods, ever," said Dean. "I mean, just in the past couple of years, we've had the pleasure of meeting a Wendigo, an insane family of inbred human-hunters, and a friggin' pack of vampires...just in the woods..."
"Yeah, well. Comes with the job." Sam paused, suddenly aware that Dean had shifted focus from himself to a presence over his shoulder, a sheepish grin now on his face. Sam turned to look behind him, met with the sight of their 16-year old waitress. Her mouth was slightly open, her pen raised shakily over her pink notepad.
"C-Can I t-take your o-order?" she stuttered.
Sam smiled uncomfortably. "How long have you been there...er, Rachel?" he asked sweetly, quickly reading her nametag.
"Just a little while," she whispered. Sam took in the sight of her wide, blue eyes, her blonde hair pulled back in pink clips, and the glitter nail polish on her nails. The poor girl was probably freaked out to all hell. And he had no idea what to say.
Sam exaggerated his tight lipped grin, nodding slowly and glancing over at a somewhat stunned Dean. Taking the hint, Dean switched on his 'charming' mode.
"Sorry, we must sound weird, huh?" he said, forcing a laugh. "We get that a lot, actually. See, we're, uh, cops. And we're just looking into a new case, that's all."
"V-vampires?" whispered Rachel, almost inaudibly.
"Er, yeah. That's our, uh, code word. We get bored with just saying 'serial killer', you know? And since vampires, well, are...supposed to go from one victim to the other, the code name fits. Get it? 'Cause serial killers go from one to the other...and, uh, Wendigo is another, er, mythical creature. It has sharp claws, right? So that's kinda like a murderer that stabs their victims. Another code word."
Dean finished his explanation, leaning back and looking pretty pleased with himself. Rachel turned to look at Sam, as if waiting to see whether or not he would choose to justify Dean's outlandish claim.
"Is that...?" she started.
"-Yep," continued Sam. "All true."
Rachel smiled, looking back at Dean now with an expression that could only be described as reverence. "Wow," she said. "You must see a lot of interesting things in your job. I don't think I could ever be that brave."
Dean displayed his biggest, cocky grin. "Yeah, well, people need saving. It's totally worth it, in the end. Sure, it's scary sometimes. But you just have to push through."
Sam sat and rolled his eyes, unnoticed by either Dean or Rachel. Dean was milking this situation for all it was worth.
"That's so noble," she continued, now visibly fluttering her eyelashes.
"I do try and stay noble, but I don't do it for the praise," said Dean, raising up his arms. "Not that I don't appreciate it when it comes from a pretty girl like you."
Rachel blushed furiously. "Thank you," she whispered.
Sam held his face in his hands. Dean was such an ass. After a few seconds of silence in which he imagined Rachel was staring unabashedly at his brother, Sam rose his head and looked at her.
"So, I think I'm ready to order. How about you, Dean?"
"Wha? Oh. Yeah. Sure."
"O-Okay," answered Rachel, clicking her pen and prying her eyes away from Dean. "What'll it be?"
After both Sam and Dean gave their orders and their young waitress walked away, Sam kicked Dean under the table.
"Dude! What the hell?"
"Uh, hello? What was that all about?"
"What was what all about, Sammy?"
"The whole 'flirting with the underage waitress' thing. Not to mention that little story about the code words."
"She totally bought that, Sam. And she is NOT that underage."
"Dean, she's like 16 years old. She had a backpack with her, by the counter over there. See? There's an 11th grade English book in it."
The eldest Winchester looked in the direction in which Sam was pointing and shrugged. "So? No harm done. She was just infatuated by my good looks, now there's no suspicion on us. It all worked out."
"Sure, it all works out until she starts talking about the guy she just met to her friends over there, telling them that you flirted with her. Then they'll just call you a cradle-robber."
"Don't get your boxers in a twist, Sammy. It was a tight spot. Plus, cradle-robber goes nicely with charges of grave-desecrater, murderer, credit card fraud, and bank robbery. If I'm going down, it'll be in style. Plus, it isn't like I'd friggin' jump her bones, Sammy. I'm not a pervert."
"Yeah, whatever. I'm telling the story next time, okay?"
A few minutes later, Rachel returned with their orders...and Dean winked at her as she walked away.
"Dean!" hissed Sam.
"Names of the deceased, Riley Taylor Hawkin, age 24; Matthew Ryan Adams, age 26." The coroner's voice resonated off of the white walls of the Benson County, Colorado Morgue, destined to reach the ears of two whom he believed to be FBI investigators.
"And the remains of the departed?" asked Sam politely. "How much of the bodies were actually left after the attack?"
The coroner's face grew grim. He didn't answer Sam's inquiry verbally, but as a response pulled open to drawers from the wall, revealing that each compartment held a large plastic box.
"Both victims were...chopped...in the same pattern," he said somewhat shakily. Arms, legs, both removed – laid out next to the body, though, not in another area. After being deprived of their limbs, it seems that they were both consequently cut in half. That was the cause of death, actually – seems they were both alive up until that point."
"Jesus Christ," muttered Dean under his breath. Sam winced, then focused his gaze on the boxes. "If you don't mind, doctor, my partner and I would like to take a moment to examine the remains."
"Of course," said the man hastily. "I'm always glad to be of help." He nodded to the brothers, then exited – somewhat quickly – from the morgue.
"This is going to be pleasant," said Dean.
"You do it," insisted Sam.
"Because I did it last time, remember? The disembodied head?"
"Crap," cursed Dean.
"It's only fair, and you know it."
"You sound like a two-year old."
"I don't care. You're doing it."
"Sammy..." Dean's glare was murderous.
But Sam's was harder. And damnit if Dean just couldn't give into the kid.
"Fine." Dean hesitatingly pried the plastic lid of the first box, labeled with the name of the girl victim. The coppery scent of blood immediately entered the air, filling both boys' nostrils.
Dean looked repugnant. "Do we really have to do this, Sam? We already know what we're gonna find. Chopped up bodies."
Sam, for a moment, looked like he was going to give in. But only momentarily.
"Maybe," he insisted. "But maybe not."
Dean sighed. "Persistent bastard," he muttered. Reluctantly, Dean peered into the contents of the container.
"So what?" answered Dean.
"What do you see?"
"Er, I see blood. Happy? And that's about it."
"No, no. There has to be more." Sam walked over next to Dean, who then threw his hands in the air and walked away.
"Why couldn't you've just done it in the first place, then?"
Sam didn't answer, but continued to stare at something apparently interesting on the body.
"What? Have a new interest in mutilated corpses? What in hell is so damn interesting, Sammy?" Dean spun back around to face his brother, his frustration quickly dissipating upon seeing what Sam held on the tip of his latex glove.
Please review! Again, I'm giving my puppy-dog eyes...it worked once, I'm not hesitating to try it again! The story will soon deepen, and I promise angst and scenes in the woods are to come later on...is that incentive enough? Although, yes, it WILL likely be a long update - I work every day during the weekends. It's midnight now, my only free time! But I probably DO need sleep...