Title: Ghost Ship
A/N: Written for the August Fic contest at the SFTCOL(AR)S message board.
Disclaimer: All things "Supernatural" belong to Kripke and the CW.
The beach is deserted,but occasionally faraway voices are carried across the water--sounds that may have come out of a memory or a dream.
The wooden planks creaked loudly in the silence of the late hour as the Winchester brothers climbed the ramp to board the Square rigger. Under the light of the full moon the beauty of this now retired pirate's vessel was breath taking. A ship well traveled now anchored forever in a small northeastern seaport ,where it's become a famous visitor's attraction. Popular for it's beauty, it's history and the former Captain's spirit who according to the townfolk and visitors still roams his ship.
"Yo! Ho! Ho! and a bottle of Rum."
"Shhhhh not so loud Dean !"
"Phantom pirates? Dean chuckled, shaking his head. How you got me on this boat Sammy I'll never know!"
"The name of the ship, Dean?"
"Yeah! Yeah! I know,Captain Zachary Mckay named the ship after his wife. She was murdered and he died before finding her killer. So the good old Captain shows up every year, on the anniversary of her death still searching."
"Makes sense Dean,the Captain's spirit showing up here on the Madeline Rose. He did suspect the killer was one of his crew."
The two started walking ,making a slow investigative sweep of everything top side.
"An avenging phantom pirate? I don't know Sammy!"
"What about the missing people Dean? "
"You mean the teenager,the drunk and that really tall guy?"
"Ran away, fell overboard, joined the Spurs!"
"What about the eyewitnesses Dean?"
"Okay! okay! But this is way out there, even for us!"
"I know," Sam acknowledged. Meeting Dean's gaze his serious face morphed into a smile accompanied by a gentle laugh.
Now having returned to their point of origin without discovering anything remotely paranormal the brothers decide to head below and check out the crews quarters as well as the Captains. Both places in which the apparition of Captain Zachary Mckay has been seen.
"Ladies first" Dean smiled at Sam,opening the hatch.
With flashlights their only source of light the brothers cautiously begin their search of the ship's dark and dank lower level.
Suddenly a scream pierces the air.
Bolting towards the direction of the sound. Sam is first to enter the Captains quarters his eyes quickly widening at the sight of what looked to be, unbelievably a pirate holding a teenage boy of about 16.
On the floor not a few feet away is a young girl about the same age screaming for the apparition to let go of the boy. Dean kneels down to check on her not once taking his eyes off of Sammy and the struggling duet in front of his little brother.
A rift of light appears and the phantom pirate heads towards it dragging the boy.
Sam lunges for the screaming teenager and swoosh he disappears into the spiritual vortex with them.
"Shit!' Dean leaps through the opening after his brother. Wherever you go I will follow
In the blink of an eye he crash lands on a wooden floor beside Sammy,who is sitting there silently taking in his surroundings.
"What the fuck?" Dean exclaims,shaking his head in disbelief.
They weren't in the Captain's Quarters and with the name "Anna Louise" printed on the cargo crates nearby, this wasn't even the same ship.
Getting on their feet a mirrored touch of the shoulder accompanied with eye contact reassured each ,of the other's well being. They could hear muffled voices approaching so hidden they remained. Peering around the supply crates both boys catch the images of two pirates. After prying a crate open, each grabs a bottle of wine and heads up the steps, their conversation and laughter fading with them.
The brother's were now alone in what appeared to be a supply room in one of the lower levels of the ship.
"Ouch! Sam yells,at his arm being pinched. What the hell was that for?"
"Just making sure I'm awake," Dean mused trying to lighten things up.
Cautiously heading up the steps the brother's find themselves outside a small kitchen area. A friendly argument between the two cooks is going on inside the doorless room, about the preparation of the Captain's meal.
Suddenly from behind them appeared two crew members. Wanting no explanation from Dean they said their hellos with fists instead of handshakes. Punches flew between the foursome as team brothers defended themselves. Another man, in more decoratively dressed pirate attire joined in by striking Sam.
The fight came to an abrupt halt when Sam's undercut sent Mr. fancy pants flying and crash landing against a wall ,injuring his head. Unknowingly the younger Winchester had assaulted the Captain and within minutes a whole squadron of seamen appeared.
But this wasn't Captain Zachary McKay! Where did he vanish with the young boy? These questions were forgotten when the order of punishment for Sam was heard. He was to be flogged ,receiving twelve lashes for striking an superior officer.
Hands tied in front of him Dean stood with the rest of the crew. His bruised face showed the end result of objecting to his brother's impending punisment. He had tried everything, even offering to take his brother place but to no avail. The punishment given would remain and there were two bouncer sized crewmen on each side of Dean to insure he didn't interfere.
The elder Winchester and all crew members were required to be there. Sam was to be an example of what happens when order is not kept aboard the Captain's floating home.
Dean watched in horror as his brother is pushed face first against a wooden grating on the ship's deck, Sam's arms are spread apart and tied down. From behind him a hand grabs hold of his shirt collar yanking it down hard ,exposing Sam's bare back.
With each lash of the whip Dean flinches, struggling hard to free himself from the arms that pin him.
Sam's silence became grunts as the strikes against his flesh continued. As his torment came close to ending he expelled full voiced cries of agony which send Dean into a mad frenzy fighting rigorously to free his arms. He kicks ,screams and curses at his captors,anything for them to stop hurting his brother. Then everything goes black.
Dean comes to on the floor of a small room similar to a jail. Lying there momentarily, what happened slowly filters back into his pounding head .
With no response he calls louder. "Sammy?"
"I'm right here," came a soft voice, very close by.
Dean pushes himself up and turns to see his little brother lying there behind him curled up in a fetal position.
"Your back, let me see." Dean said ,wobbling as he tries to stand.
"I'm fine Dean!" Sam reiterates.
"Disregarding his younger brother's claims,Dean squats down behind Sam and very gently lifts his shirt to inspect his wounds.
"It doesn't look too bad," Dean lied over the lump in his throat.
"We'll take care of that when you boys get out of here."
Dean couldn't believe he was actually looking into those compassionate fatherly eyes.
"Figured you boys might need a hand." Bobby said standing there in full pirate attire.
"The man certainly knows how to make an entrance!" Dean said warmly, gently patting his brother's head. Bobby was like family.
Picking the old lock wasn't difficult for the kind hearted con man and soon the door swung open.
"Come on ladies" Bobby said helping Dean get Sam gently to his feet.
"Hey Bobby," Sam smiled "I can't believe you found us."
"I can't believe what I'm seeing!" Bobby responded.
"I can't believe what you're wearing," Dean added with a quirky smile.
The three of them needed to get back to the supply room and the spiritual vortex that brought them to this time and place. But standing in their path was a gaggle of pirates.
Bobby's imitation of a rogue crew member resulted in Sam and Dean's escape,now his ruse of taking the prisoners below and putting them to work had them headed down the steps into the supply room . Bobby climbed down with Sam behind him and lastly Dean.
"You put the con in con man, Bobby" Dean said looking impressed. But the look was short lived eyeing Bobby's worried face.
"What's the matter?"
"This supply room looks different!"
"It's not the same room," Sam whispered in disbelief.
"That's because you're on my ship!"
It was Capt. Zachary McKay and his next in command
"What the hell is going on Bobby?" Dean yelled catching the name "Madeline Rose" now appeared on the supply crates
"I don't know! Multiple vortexes or ones that overlap!"
"Take him!" the Captain ordered pointing towards Sam. "Finally I will have revenge for my Madeline!"
"Get your hand's off of him!' Dean ordered back , shoving hard anyone who touched Sam.
Bobby joined in the struggle to protect Sam. and was grabbed by two more men that entered the room. All resisting came to a halt quickly when pistols were drawn.
"Wait! I didn't murder anyone," Sam pulled at the hands holding him.
"This boy means a lot to you doesn't he?" Captain Zachary spoke, moving close to Dean's face.
"Now you will know what it feels like to lose someone close to your heart!"
"You will watch him walk the plank and to his watery grave!"
Dean and Bobby's hands were tied in front of them and each had been escorted to the ship's deck by beefy crew members carrying pistols. The order was given to shoot Sam on the spot if either of them said a word or made any kind of move towards him.
With his feet and hand's bond Sam was standing next to the platform in which he was to meet his fate.
With tear filled, pleading eyes Sam grabbed a last look at Bobby and hung onto Dean's eyes for as long as possible. He was being forced towards the end of the plank by a crewman's sword.
Teetering at the edge for a while,Sam struggled to keep his balance and at the same time avoid the tip of the sword he was being poked with. But eventually he lost that battle and fell into the water below.
"Sammy!" Dean screamed in horror running down the length of the plank and diving into the icy cold ocean.
He came up without finding Sam,took a deep breath and dove back under again. Gulping in the air the next time up Bobby was out on the plank screaming and motioning with his tied arms for Dean to move further right. This time under the surface Dean grabbed onto his brother. It was a struggle but with great difficulty Dean managed to move behind Sam and place his tied arms over Sam head and down around his waist holding him close. Kicking hard with his feet Dean brought them both up above water.
"Dean," Sam's voice was barely audible
"I got you Sammy!" Knowing he had his little brother in his arms seemed to make treading water a little easier.
"Dean!" His voice seemed louder.
"I got you!" Treading water seemed effortless ,the water felt as smooth as silk
Sam shook his brother's shoulder hard.
Opening his eyes Dean found Sam looking at him with a big smirk.
"What the hell were you dreaming about man,you were thrashing around under those sheet like you were drowning or something!"
"I don't remember," Dean lied, thankful this was a nightmare.
"You don't remember Dean? You were freaking doing the backstroke under the covers." Sam teased.
"Shut up and leave me alone!" Dean pouted, pulling the covers over his head.
" Okay, well I'm heading out to get us some coffee and donuts, be back in a moment."
"Wait I'll get dressed and we can find a diner. Let's sit down and have a real breakfast."
"Sure" Sam said plopping down on the bed.
It was just a dumb dream Dean thought. But it woke him up a little and he wanted to take a break from the hunting ,the demons, the hell in which the Winchester's lived and spend a moment focusing on what's most precious in his life,his little brother.