"No, we'll be fine Mr. Williams," Sam Winchester replied with a charming smile. "Just make sure no one else comes in until we're done."
Ed Williams nodded, watching as the two young men disappeared into the darkened building. He closed the door behind them and settled on a folding chair to keep watch.
"What kind of crazy spirit would want to haunt a craft store?" Sam's older brother Dean wondered aloud once they were inside.
Sam shrugged. "Martha Stewart's? I mean, she's not dead yet, but she's crazy enough to do it when the time comes." He clicked on his flashlight and swept the beam around the dusty storeroom. "You got the stuff?"
"Yeah," Dean reached into a duffel bag at his feet and withdrew a handful of bundles. Handing half of the small packets to his brother he asked, "How you wanna split the place up? Front and back? Two sides?"
"I'll take the left side and you take the right, that way we won't be too far apart when things go bad." Sam took the proffered sachets and headed to the far corner of the dingy stockroom.
"When things go bad? Optimistic much Sammy?" Dean tossed over his shoulder as he headed to the opposite corner.
"Dean, when has getting rid of a poltergeist ever gone smoothly? I mean, flying knives, evil lamp cords…any of that ringing a bell?" Sam asked as he moved a stack of boxes aside. "Oh, and we can't forget that ice cream shop in Oklahoma. After all, it's not every day that you almost die by drowning a vat of chocolate chip ice cream," he reminded Dean with a chuckle.
"Laugh it up geek-boy, at least I didn't get suffocated by a pissed off table lamp. Damn it!" Dean cursed as he tripped over a box and stumbled. "Would it freakin' kill someone to clean this place up?"
Having reached his corner, Sam didn't answer. What he had said was true; tussling with poltergeists never went smoothly. It looked good on paper; get in, put a bundle of special ingredients in each of the corners of the building and voila! No more poltergeist. The Winchesters knew from experience that if you were lucky you could get the first herb packet in place before the thing came after you. But after that you were fish in a barrel, and Sam shuddered to think what an angry spirit could do with the ammunition a fully stocked arts and crafts super store offered.
Sam was reluctant to actually step into the corner between the heavy shelving, knowing he would probably wind up trapped in there within seconds of dropping the herbs. To his relief, he found that his arms were long enough to reach in with out getting too close, and he quickly placed the sachet in the corner and jerked his arm back, bracing for an attack.
He wasn't disappointed. The first flying missile glanced off of his shoulder within seconds, but surprisingly the impact didn't cause any pain. Sam turned just in time to catch a second object in his chest, grabbing it as it fell. "Teddy bears?" The disbelieving words had barely left his mouth before a fresh volley of stuffed animals was launched in his direction. Their soft bodies left no injuries, but Sam soon found himself snowed under by the sheer volume of them.
Dean had just reached his end of the building when he heard the commotion, and turned to check on Sam, only to find his brother standing waist deep in a pile of teddy bears, a steady rain of the furry critters still rocketing toward him. Laughing softly, Dean stretched out and dropped one of his bundles into the corner before him, and beat a hasty retreat.
The poltergeist didn't let him get far, though Dean managed to clear the corner before he came under assault. A massive box on the top shelf above his head tipped over and a deluge of glitter poured down on Dean. In the still air of the musty room, a sudden breeze appeared, whipping the shower of sparkles into a dense, whirling cloud.
"What the fu…blech!" Dean spat as his outburst earned him a mouthful of glitter. He waved his arms blindly, forced to fight with his eyes closed or else risk getting the scratchy particles in more sensitive body parts. This is just wrong, he thought, hoping fervently that Sam was too occupied with his own predicament to notice the rather undignified battle Dean was waging with the sparkling maelstrom.
Sam took advantage of the momentary break in the onslaught of toys to dig his way out of the chest deep pile. He knew the spirit was more than capable of attacking them both at the same time, and suspected that a lack of ammunition had granted him this reprieve. That being the case, he really didn't want to be around when the poltergeist reloaded, and he managed to slip out the door that lead to the sales floor, waiting until he reached the temporary safety of the main store before exploding with laughter at the image of Dean fighting a glitter tornado.
His mirth didn't last long, as an ominous rustling noise drew his attention back to the matter at hand. Sam pivoted on his heel, unable to contain a startled yelp as the burst of light from his flashlight revealed a bizarre sight.
Three six-foot tall silk fichus trees were rapidly bearing down on him, fake leaves waving menacingly, their wicker basket bottoms scraping across the smooth linoleum floor.
Sam took a moment to wonder what exactly the trees would do to him if they caught him, aside from stuffing leaves into his mouth, or whipping him with their plastic limbs, but ultimately decided he really didn't want to find out and grabbed a thick dowel rod from a near-by display, brandishing it at the evil plants. He backed away, failing to notice that he was stepping into the floral department, a fact that came to his attention a second too late as long strands of silk ivy slithered off the shelf and quickly twined themselves around his body, forcing his arms to his sides.
Fortunately for Sam, his brother had finally escaped the shimmering storm in the stockroom and chose that moment to come hurtling onto the sales floor in a cloud of glitter, slamming the door behind him. His clothes and hair sparkled wildly in the faint light from Sam's dropped flashlight, but he seemed otherwise unharmed.
The trees seemed not to have noticed Dean's rather dramatic entrance, and continued to advance on Sam, who had been forced to relinquish his makeshift sword as new strands of ivy joined the party and covered his hands.
"Uh Dean? A little hep hewe?" Sam managed to call out, the ivy leaves crawling into his mouth as soon as he opened it.
Dean turned to survey the spectacle, which would be hilarious once he saved Sam from the looming fichus. "Hang on Sammy, I'm coming." He pulled his hunting knife out of a sheath in his pocket, groaning as a shower of glitter accompanied the blade, and headed to his brother's aid.
As Dean got closer, the rearmost fichus suddenly noticed him and switched directions, standing its ground in the middle of the crowded aisle. The tree waved its fake branches at him in what was clearly intended to be an intimidating manner, if you could actually intimidate someone with a plastic tree.
"How the hell do you kill a fake tree?" Dean demanded out loud. Weighing his options and settling on a plan of action, he charged at the plant.
A quick swipe of his knife dispatched the two longest limbs on the fichus, enabling him to make a grab for its trunk with both hands. Ignoring the scratches he was earning from the sharp edges of the plastic branches, Dean swiftly picked up the tree and broke its trunk over his knee with a satisfying crack. "Ha! That'll teach you to mess with Dean Winchester!"
Sam rolled his eyes, spitting dusty silk leaves out of his mouth and wiggling as best he could in his bindings of plastic vines. Leave it to Dean to gloat over defeating a silk plant. "Any day now Dean," he called out, jerking his head back to prevent the leaves from gagging him again.
"I'm comin', I'm comin'," Dean muttered, running up behind the two remaining fichus and tossing them aside haphazardly, hearing the snap as one of the trunks broke on impact. His knife dispatched the ivy, leaving it in a pile of fabric and plastic bits as he gave Sam a quick once over out of long standing habit, checking for injury. Finding none, he handed his brother's flashlight back to him and said, "C'mon, let's waste this bitch."
Sam followed Dean down the main aisle toward the front of the store. They didn't make it far before they ran into a dead end. The display units from the middle of the aisle had congregated in the path, forcing the brothers to turn down a side aisle.
"Oh hell no," Dean exclaimed as they surveyed the contents of the detour aisle.
Scissors of every size lined both sides of the shelves. Big scissors, little scissors, pinking shears, specialty scrap booking scissors, and perhaps worst of all, the rotary cutting tools with their shining, round blades.
A soft rustling echoed down the narrow aisle, heralding the arrival of a familiar foe. The remaining fichus scraped into view at the far end of the shelves and began making its way toward the brothers.
The sound of shattering plastic was the only warning Sam and Dean got as hundreds of pairs of scissors suddenly shed their packaging and hurled themselves at the two men in advance of the angry tree.
"Sammy, get down!" Dean shouted, pulling his brother to the floor with him. The scissors flew uselessly over their heads, clattering onto the floor behind them.
Undeterred by the lack of results from the first round of scissors, the fichus continued its slow progress down the aisle, waving its thin branches in what could only be understood as anger.
"I think we pissed it off," Sam muttered as they scrambled to their feet and ran to a less dangerous area of the store.
"I am not getting taken down by a fake tree," Dean said as they searched for a safer aisle to take. "We should split up and make for the front of the store. Gotta get the last two bundles in place."
From behind them came a loud cracking noise, and they whirled to face it. The fichus stood in the main aisle, scraping its wicker basket bottom on the floor like a bull preparing to charge. An array of scissors and cutting instruments hovered in the air behind it, waiting from a signal from an unseen source.
"RUN!" Sam yelled, taking off as fast as he could in the cluttered store.
Dean sprinted to his left, relieved to find the shelves in this section filled with nice, soft yarn. He could hear the scissors whirring down the open expanse of the main aisle like overgrown hornets, ending their flight with a dull thunk as they slammed into the back wall. But a quick glance behind him showed that none of the cutting instruments were inclined to follow him, and he breathed a sigh of relief.
A vague tickling sensation on his hand attracted Dean's attention and he looked down to find a skein of hot pink yarn winding itself around his wrist. Two more strands suddenly joined the attack, wrapping around his ankle and making their way up his leg.
"Oh you have got to be kidding me," he shouted, yanking at the wool in frustration. He was reaching for his knife to cut the threads, when pair of scissors hit the corner of his aisle and ricocheted toward him, dropping to the floor at Dean's feet with a clatter.
Dean quickly scooped them up and snipped the pesky strands of yarn, shouting in triumph. His joy was short lived though, as more skeins of yarn began unrolling in his direction, rapidly covering him in a heap of multi-colored strings. Managing to hold onto his trusty scissors despite the determination of a particularly annoying mass of electric blue yarn, Dean began cutting his way out of the Technicolor pile, swearing softly as he worked.
Sam darted down an aisle to his right, watching as the fichus hurtled past him toward the back of the store. He chuckled softly and turned, intending to head down the aisle. Instead, he was treated to a painfully abrupt introduction to the floor as his legs were pulled out from under him. Rolling onto his back, he found that several bolts of pink and white tulle had leapt from their cardboard centers and were now tangled around his long legs.
"Could this get any weirder?" Sam muttered to himself as he struggled to escape the filmy fabric. He scooted backward, trying to unravel the fabric and crashed heavily into the rack behind him with a yelp. The shelves collapsed with a terrific clatter showering Sam with an assortment of fancy guest books, silver favor baskets, and various bejeweled hair decorations.
Having finally extricated himself from the vicious knitting supplies, and he was truly grateful that the foot-long knitting needles had decided not to join the party, Dean was on his feet and moving again when his brother's cry and the resound clatter sounded from the other side of the store, drawing Dean in that direction.
Dean ran around the corner, skidding to a halt and nearly collapsing with laughter at the sight before him. His brother was sprawled haphazardly against the ruined shelves, swathed in pink and white gauze, and sporting an epic bitchface. But that wasn't what sent Dean into a fit of laughter. It was the gaudy pearl and rhinestone tiara that was currently perched on Sam's head that made Dean laugh so hard he was nearly crying.
"Bite me," Sam snapped from the floor, fighting his way to a sitting position. "Are you going to help me or are you going to giggle some more?"
"Dude," Dean gasped, wiping his eyes with a shaking hand, "I do not giggle. I oughta leave you here just for suggesting such a thing," he threatened as he began cutting away the fabric.
Sam smirked and tugged a scrap of baby pink yarn out of Dean's hair. "I see I'm not the only one who's had some problems." He accepted Dean's outstretched hand and stood up, shaking the bits of clinging tulle to the floor.
Dean stifled a laugh when Sam failed to notice the tiara on his head, deciding that he'd let his little brother figure that one out the hard way, and hoping he could grab a shot with his camera phone before Sam caught on. "Let's go," he said. "I'll take the far corner, you take this one," Dean gestured toward the front of the building.
Sam took off with out a reply, loping toward the front of the store. Aside from a brief attack by a flock of kamikaze pencils, he managed to reach the front corner with relative ease, and tossed his packet into the corner, his suspicions raised by the lack of opposition he encountered.
An echoing crash sounded from the other side of the room and Sam knew why he had had it pretty easy. The poltergeist had apparently decided to concentrate its attentions on Dean, focusing all of its power on one target. Dean was going to need help.
Sam found his brother pressed against the wall by a display case of dollhouse furniture, the heavy wooden cabinet trapping Dean under its weight.
"Sammy! Catch!" Dean hollered, using his unpinned hand to toss the vital sachet to his brother. With an irritated grunt, Dean shoved at the chest, surprised when it gave way enough to allow him to slip out from behind it. He didn't stop to ponder it, just hurried after his brother's tall form.
Everything was going surprisingly smoothly for Sam, and he wondered for a moment if the poltergeist had missed the hand off and was still after Dean. He got his answer when he put his right foot suddenly skittered out from under him. As he careened wildly down the aisle Sam caught a glimpse of his obstacle.
A rack full of plastic beads had poured onto the floor, working as effectively as ball bearings at tripping Sam up. The joke was on the spirit however, as Sam managed to keep his footing and use the increased momentum to reach the corner even faster.
He knew he'd never make it close enough to lay the bundle precisely in the corner like he wanted to, so Sam settled for a gentle, underhand toss. The sachet bounced off the far wall and miraculously fell into the right spot, just as a towering rack of dolls toppled over and buried Sam.
Dean heard the roar and saw the brilliant flash of light and knew that Sam had been successful. He just hoped his brother wasn't hurt. "Sammy!" Dean shouted, dropping to his knees at the edge of the pile of dolls.
The center of the mound heaved and Sam's disheveled head poked out, the tiara tilted to one side, but still in place. "We got it?" Sam inquired dazedly.
"Yup Sammy, we did," Dean answered, casually fishing his cell phone out of his pocket. Now, he just had to get Sam to look this way. "Hey college boy!"
Sam turned to face his brother, swearing as the bright beam of Dean's flashlight hit his face. "Dean what the hell are you…." he trailed off, spotting the phone in Dean's hand and the broad smirk on his brother's face. He got the feeling that he was missing something important, and if whatever it was brought that kind of look to Dean's face…well…it didn't bode well for Sam's dignity. Sam gave his brother a bitchy look and huffed as he focused on freeing himself from the heap of toys.
Dean was chuckling quietly and gloating over the fabulous blackmail material he had just acquired, when a muffled yelp yanked him back to the present. "You okay Sammy?"
"Yeah, I'm fine." Sam swallowed hard and edged away from the offending object, choosing a new path out of the mess.
After helping his brother escape the pile of dolls, Dean found himself laughing hysterically for the second time that night as he discovered the source of Sam's terror. "Aw Sammy, he's so cute," Dean said between fits of laughter, scooping up the clown doll and waving it at his brother. "Betcha Ed would let you have him if you ask real nice."
Sam rolled his eyes and stalked toward the back of the store. "You're a real jerk sometimes, you know that?"
Wiping his eyes, Dean followed Sam's indignant path to the exit. "Lighten up Sammy. You have to admit, that was one of our more amusing jobs." Catching up to his brother, Dean reached up and snagged the tiara off of Sam's head, eliciting a curse from Sam when the attached combs caught in his hair.
Dean handed the sparkling crown to his brother. "You need to leave this here though. Wouldn't want old Ed to get the wrong idea about you." He grinned mischievously up at Sam and continued on toward the storeroom.
Sam stared dumbly at the object in his hand, the motive behind Dean's sudden photographic urge evident. "Dean, I'm gonna kill you!" He shouted angrily, setting the tiara down and stomping towards the exit. The echoing of Dean's laughter as he ran out the back door was the only reply he got.
A/N: Like I said. Crack!...but if you liked it, please review! Thank you!