Title: Child's Play
Summary: Six-year-old Sam makes friends with a five-year-old girl named Lucy who is more than what she appears.
Spoilers: None. Pre-series.
Disclaimer: Sam, Dean, and John Winchester are mine only in my dreams. They belong to Eric Kripke and the CW.
Author's Note: I'm quite nervous about this one because 1) new fandoms are nervous-making, and 2) it's the first multi-chapter story I've written since 2005. Whitman, MA is a real place and the Willow Motel was a real motel, but as far as I know, none of this ever really happened there. ;) Pre-series, Baby!Winchesters: Dean is 10, Sam is 6. Feedback is my anti-drug!
The little girl wedged herself into the far corner of the motel room, pushing herself as far back against the wall as she could, and hugged her knees to her chest. She watched with tears in her eyes as the man advanced on her. "I'm sorry," she cried. "I didn't mean to be loud. Please, I didn't mean to!" She dropped her head onto her knees, squeezing her eyes closed as her tears slid down her cheek.
The man grabbed a hunk of her dark hair and pulled on it, lifting her head so she would look at him. Her hand flew to her scalp as she cried out in pain. "Stop your crying and keep quiet," he hissed at her. He let go of her hair dismissively and crouched down so that he was eye-level with her. "You know what happens when you cry."
The little girl nodded, quickly swallowing back some of her tears. He had hit her earlier for crying; her stinging, red cheek was testament to that.
"Good girl," he said, standing up. "I don't want to hear another peep out of you."
She nodded again, letting out a breath that she wasn't even aware that she had been holding. The man, content that she was sufficiently calm and was going to remain quiet, walked away from her and disappeared around the corner. When she heard the bathroom door close, she dropped her head back down onto her knees, tightened her grip on her legs, and cried silently, her tears soaking into her jeans.
All she wanted was to go home. She had been playing in the playground with a friend when the man came up to her and told her that her mother had been in an accident and that she needed to go with him. Her mother had always warned her not to talk to strangers and to never get in a car with one, but the man promised he was telling her the truth and that her mother was hurt. She knew now that the man had lied to her, that her mother wasn't hurt, and that he had only said that to get her go with him.
She wasn't sure how long she'd been in the motel room with the man; three or four days perhaps. She had tried to keep track of the days by how many times she'd eaten or how many times she'd slept. However, he didn't feed her regularly and when he did, she always got very sleepy afterwards.
The bathroom door opened and the little girl looked up sharply. The man came into view again, and she tensed, wondering if he was going to hit her again. Instead, he turned on the television and sat down on one of the beds. Once she was convinced that he was not going to come after her, the little girl pushed herself up onto her feet. She stood in the corner for a long moment, afraid to move.
At her movement, the man checked his watch and then turned around to face the girl. "You hungry?"
"Yes, sir," she answered, her voice hitching in her throat.
In the time that she had been with the man, she had learned that she should always ask for food. For whatever reason, every time he gave her something to eat, she always got really sleepy when she was finished. She tried to sleep as much as she could because he didn't hit her or yell at her when she was asleep. When she was asleep, he left her alone.
"Sit down on the bed, and I'll make you something to eat." The stranger's gruff voice made everything he said sound like an order. She immediately took a seat on the lumpy mattress.
The man stepped over to the small counter in the room and grabbed a package of ramen noodles. The little girl wrinkled her nose; she was quickly becoming very tired of ramen noodles. Any time he made a meal for her, it was either ramen noodles or Cheerios. Her mother had always cooked for her, and she missed her mother's meals. Was she ever going to see her mother again? The tears came without warning, and before she even realized what she was doing, the question tumbled from her mouth, "When can I see my mommy again?"
The man shot her a glare before turning back to the noodles. He stirred the bowl of water and noodles, set it in the microwave, and set the timer for four minutes. Then he turned around to stare down the little girl. "What did I tell you about questions?"
"Why did you take me from my mommy?" she asked. She knew she was making him mad, but she couldn't stop the words from coming. "Please, I just want my mommy."
The man rushed towards her, grabbed her by the shoulders, and forced her back against the headboard. The little girl whimpered as her head slammed into the wall. "I said no questions!"
Tears quickly began running down her cheeks as her head exploded in pain. "I want my mommy!" she cried, her voice rising in hysteria. "I just want my mommy!"
"Shut up!" the man yelled, pulling her away from the headboard. Shaking her shoulders roughly, he forced her off the bed and pinned her against the wall. "I told you to be quiet!"
He held her against the wall for a moment longer before releasing his grip on her. She crumpled to the floor, holding her throbbing head. She was sobbing, her breath coming out in shuddering gasps. Quickly realizing that he would throw her against the wall again if she didn't quiet down, she began forcing herself to calm down by taking deep, even breaths. She was just starting to breathe normally again when the microwave dinged; her dinner was ready.
The little girl picked herself up off the floor and sat down on the edge of the bed, waiting for him to bring the bowl to her. She watched as he stirred the soup again before taking it to her. She accepted the bowl and began eating. After what she had just been through, she wasn't hungry anymore, but she knew better than to refuse to eat. That would only make him even more angry.
She began getting sleepy before she had eaten all of the noodles. She didn't normally become tired that quickly, but after what she had just experienced, she didn't care. She got off the bed and put the bowl on the counter so the man could wash it; he was going to need it again for her cereal in the morning. Then she crawled back onto her bed and curled up in a ball on her side. The last thing she thought of as she drifted off to sleep was her mother wrapping her in a long, comforting hug.