Pre-series, Dean is ca. 23.

Disclamer: I don't own John or the concept of the show. Frankie is mine as much as anything can be.

PLEASE

"Frankie Moragh?" Spoken in a low voice behind her, not really a question.

Hearing her name, out of the blue like that, catches her off guard and she goes to look up in acknowledgement. She manages to stop herself in time, but knows that the tell-tale stiffening of her neck has not gone unnoticed. Fuck. Cursing herself and the world in general, she glues her gaze to the diner window while assuming her very best Air of Innocence.

A hand on her shoulder. "Frankie Moragh?"

She looks up, her face relaxed and open and looking slightly surprised.

"I'm sorry, were you talking to me?"

The man in front of her is taller than her (although of course most people are) with a muscular build and a tired, but watchful expression. His skin is tan, his hair and beard black.

"You must have me confused with someone else." she says with a warm smile "My name is Maggie." She points to her name tag, a friendly waitress correcting a simple mistake.

"I need to speak to you, I need your help."

A hunter?...A demon?How the hell did he find me?

"Well I'm sorry love, but I can't help you." She forces herself to keep smiling. "Like I said you're mistaking me for someone else." She walks away, willing herself to look calm.

He follows her and speaking very quietly he says: "I don't think I'm mistaken."

"I knew a girl named Frankie once." She turns around and looks straight into his eyes, smile still on her face but eyes hard and cold. "She's dead. Car crash. Tragic."

"Look" He says calmly "We can stand here all day and go 'round like this but I'm imagening you'd rather avoid the attention that would draw. I'm not leaving, and you should know I have a reputation for persistence."

Just what kind of persistence? She thinks as she looks into his dark eyes, seeing something slightly disturbing in their depths. She hesitates for a second, then resumes her light air.

"Can I bum a fag?"

"What?"

"A cigarette? You have one? My break's coming up."

He just shakes his head, but follows her when she walks through the kitchen into the back alley.

O

He turns to her as soon as they're outside and, not knowing what to expect, she clutches the stiletto in her apron pocket.

"My name is John Winchester."

Winchester. Fuck. She's heard about him. Only one year in the damn country, hiding and avoiding anything even resembling a hunter, and she'd still managed to hear about him.

"Hello John." She lights up and gives him a poker faced look. "What were you wanting to talk to me about?"

"I have a son. He's about your age."

She laughs. "And he's too shy to ask me out?" Okay, so it's not the best joke she's ever made, but she doesn't like the tone in his voice. She knows what's coming next.

"He's dying." Yup, there it is.

"He got knocked out of a fourth storey window on a hunt and suffered massive cerebral bleeding. He's in a coma and the doctors say he's not coming back. He'll just slip away further until he dies."

She looks up at him. H e looks composed, but she's not fooled by that. She doesn't want to hear any more, this is not her story and she's not going to get dragged into it.

"I'm very sorry for you. You should go be with him."

She turns to walk inside.

"I know you can help him. I know what you can do."

She stops dead. Fuck.

"Can doesn't mean will."

He takes a step closer.

"I know you can help him. He was only trying to help someone, he doesn't deserve to die for it. You wouldn't even have to leave town, just do the ritual. It's not even dangerous. It's not a great price to pay to save a man's life."

"Yes it is" she says angrily. "You seem to know all about me so you know very well what this could cost me."

"He doesn't deserve this!"

"Neither do I! Look, I don't know where in the world you heard about me, but I don't do this kind of thing anymore. Just because some guy I've never met doesn't deserve his fate doesn't mean I have to come running to the rescue. I'm sorry for your trouble, I really am, but there's a lot of trouble in the world and I don't think this is any of mine."

She feels like shit saying it, but then again she's pretty used to feeling like shit anyway. Relenting a little she continues.

"I really am sorry, but I can't help you."

He takes a deep breath.

"Look. He's all I've got. His mother's dead and his brother's not talking to me. Dean is all that's left of my family. I'm not loosing him. I can't."

She carefully masks her shock at receiving such intimate information from a stranger, and a hunter at that. He really must be desperate.

"Come on man. You should know better than to try to play on my heart strings." She says as coldly as she can manage.

"Should I?" He asks.

She flinches. Okay, desperate and a good judge of character- crap.

"Like I said: I don't do this anymore. I'm just a waitress."

They stand there quietly for a while. Then he looks away.

"Please."

It's so quiet that she almost misses it, but it sends a chill through her body. She's never heard so much grief expressed in one word. She realizes the man is begging her. Begging. And she knows, just from his presence, that this man never begs for anything.

The cigarette has burned up i her hand.

"I have to get back to work."

She turns around to walk inside and half expects him to follow her. He doesn't.

But when she comes off her shift she finds a piece of paper on the driver seat in her car. Written on stationary from The Rolling Road Hog Motel- Bed, Breakfast and Bar! is one word: 'Please'.

O

She doesn't know what the hell she's doing here. She's insane, that's what!

The owner of the 'Road Hog -and how the hell did that name happen?- gave her the room number based on a description. She didn't even bother asking for him under 'Winchester'. And now she's knocking on his door.

It really is insane. Somebody tracked her down and that should mean skipping town as fast as she can, hiding better, slipping even farther off the radar. Instead she's coming to his motel because some random bloke who happens to have a persuasive father got himself into trouble. People are in trouble all the time, that doesn't make it her problem. She should turn around and walk away now.

But she doesn't. She knocks on the door.

He doesn't seem surprised to see her. She pushes past him and stops in the middle of the floor, turning to face him.

"I don't know how the hell you found me, but if you led anyone else to me I'm going to shove my gun so far up your ass the bullet's gonna break your teeth."

He goes to answer, but she cuts him off.

" Just 'cause I can do some mojo doesn't mean I'm some kind of supernatural lobbyist. I'm not obligated to help anyone just because they had some bad luck. I've worked hard to slip off the map and I want to stay off it. I go roaming around the ethereal world looking for your son, who knows what might catch sight of me."

He doesn't respond and they stand in silence for a while.

Finally she wrinkles her nose.

"What the fuck is that smell?"

He gives a small smile and shrugs.

"Some 10 years of under payed maids, I'm thinking."

Again silence.

He sits down on the bed but she stays standing, eyeing the door. But she can't quite bring herself to walk out.

"Look." She says squaring her shoulders "I do this and I'm back in it. No going back. You're basically asking me to ditch the life I've been painstakingly building for myself for months and dive right back into hunting. And being hunted. With what I can do I sometimes don't know if I'm hunter or prey. And all this for some guy who isn't anyone to me. You do realize this is an insane thing to ask"

"I do"

"So I would be doing it why?"

He stands up and walks over to face her.

"I don't know why you decided to do it. You must have your reasons and I think you know them yourself deep down."

For a moment she's speechless.

"I haven't decided anything."

"Yes you have. You're going to help us. You wouldn't even have bothered coming if you weren't"

She just stares at him. And she realizes he's right. No point in discussing it further. This is the stupidest decision of her life, but she's already made it.

"Okay" she says quietly "Meet me here tomorrow night."

Years later she still wonders why she did it.

FIN

A.N. I didn't really want to make this into a multi chapter story, it was just the encounter of Frankie and John that interested me. I'm working on a story where the guys run in to her in seson 3. She never actually met Dean or Sam so I thought it might be interesting...

Okay, I know John is uncharacteristically insightful in this fic, but I'm thinking maybe he's only a disaster at communicating with his sons, 'cause then he has to deal with very strong feelings. It would be quite cool if he was actually real smooth with strangers and then couldn't possibly keep his temper or read reactions with his sons...