And so this one is done, the first part of the Angel Wars arc. I've already got the next one planned, Sacred Lie, which will hopefully come as easily as this one has. Thanks again to readers and reviewers, see you at the next one.


You're frightened, so am I
A world of demons wait
Watching the movements and filling my heart with hate
You're burning, so will I
When I awake and discover how I have been ravaged by your

At the sight of the hunters moving to bolt the door and the sound of a dozen safeties being released, Dean reacts on instinct, reaching for his own gun even though he knows that they do not stand a chance, that they are out numbered and by the time they have managed to take out even half a dozen of the hunters, they will probably be lying dead or dying on the floor. Which is a real shame, because he has not even had a chance to tell Cas how pleased he is to see that three weeks alone and fending for himself have caused the angel to finally stand up for himself.

So hearing Cassidy say that she needs to talk to them, the implication there that they are going to tell her what is happening, tell her why a blind man just managed to take out half her bar and why he wanted Castiel in the first place, is not at all comforting. This, Dean knows, is not going to be an easy task, but if he wants to lessen the possibility of the three of them winding up most definitely dead, he will need to do just that. So he leaves his weapon where it is, is not surprised when the man he was introduced to as Daniel reaches for it anyway, takes it from him with the promise of pain if Dean fights for it, hears his brother's muffled "hey" and Castiel's words of confusion.

Cassidy is calling for another as the trio are lead from the bar and into a back room, a room with a large wooden table, eight chairs around it and a variety of maps, laptops and books scattered across it. It is obviously a research room and marked on the maps are the three towns that have recently been decimated, Cassidy is evidently looking into it as well, and Dean knows that she is not going to like the answers that he is going to give her.

They trade anxious glances as they sit, Daniel opposite them, gun on the table in easy reach should they try anything. Cassidy and another man join them after only a few moments, the noise of the bar fading out as the door swings quietly shut. Though the other man does not wear glasses, his hair is the same dusty blonde and his eyes are the same pale green as Cassidy's and Dean assumes that he is her brother. Daniel greets him as Peter, and there is a note in his voice as he says it, an unspoken moment where both check that the other is alright as the blonde slides into his seat, touching the back of Daniel's hand for just a moment before turning his attention to his sister.

Cassidy's face is grave, her eyes tired and she takes off her glasses so that she can rub them for a moment. Then she is demanding her answers and there is no way that Dean is not going to give them to her, not with what just went down in the bar, not with the way that her brother and friend are glaring at him with weapons in easy reach and certainly not with her research into all those murdered people strewn across the table he is sat at. He does not, however, tell her everything, in fact he omits rather a lot of it.

He tells her about Lucifer, about the things that he did, possessing Sam, controlling him, about Katie's interference and the release of the Horsemen and finally, at the end of it all, he tells them about how he killed Lucifer, because he thought it was the right thing to do. Tells her that the angels have turned on them, have decided to finish what Lucifer started. He cannot tell her about how he and Sam are responsible for Lucifer's getting free, about Castiel's torture or killing Zachariah. Does not say that he is beginning to believe that they were manipulated and mislead by Sandalphon so that there would be little they could do but kill Lucifer.

She looks at them for a long time when he is finished talking, eyes darting between the three of them and lips drawn into a thin line, it ages her though Dean knows that she is only just in her late twenties. Then she stands, tells them that she needs to think on it, and leaves the room. Sam tries to rise and follow her and her brother shakes his head, hand straying closer to his weapon, informs Sam that he will stay seated until told otherwise.

It all lapses into uncomfortable silence.

SPN

Angels, Cassidy is not sure what she had expected to hear from Dean when he began talking, but angels was certainly not it. She does not trust him, can tell that he is leaving out large chunks of information, large amounts of detail about the circumstances leading up to all of this. She has heard the story, the rumour, Dean Winchester who sold his soul for Sam, went to Hell and then got yanked out after four months by an angel, no doubt an angel who is now the wrong feeling man sat to Dean's left in the back room.

She does not speak to the hunters who question her as she walks through and out of the bar, simply shakes her head, distant as she thinks, and they leave her to it, more than happy with her cousin behind the counter still serving the drinks. Her cousin who was in to drink after shutting his small store, not here to cover her while she deals with the never ending conspiracies that go with working with hunters in the manner she does.

Dealing with hunters is hard work, having to sort the ones who you know will have your back in a fight, even if you cannot trust them, from the ones who would allow you to be used as bait is not easy. She has no more or less of a knack for it than Peter does, although he trusts Daniel utterly, as he should, where she cannot. There was no other reason for the bar, and by default the ones who drink there, to fall under her control, except that Peter went to college, was away when she graduated and her father decided that it was time for him to move on to hunting. He left her in charge and by the time Peter got back, Cassidy was as trusted by the customers as her father. It is awkward, but it works, continues to work, for them and Peter has told her on several occasions that he does not want the responsibility she has.

Thinking on what Dean has just told her, Cassidy understands why. She now has to make a decision, a difficult one, she has to decide what to tell the people gathered and waiting for an answer.

To tell them the truth, as far as she knows it, would be to paint a target onto the backs of the Winchesters and their angel friend, to lie, or tell them nothing, would be to lose all standing that she has with these people. She has worked too hard to lose everything because of these three men, worked too hard to lose it all because the angels have finally decided to follow where their fallen brother lead. When her father left the bar was close to shutting down, too much debt and too many fights, he had lost interest in running it for a profit years before and the bar had only been kept open because it was, still is, a known safe house for hunters. If Cassidy upsets her regular visitors, she will lose the bar, she cannot remain open without the revenue the hunters bring.

It is times like this that she wishes she had more control over the hunters when they were in the outside world, wishes that there was a greater level of organisation to their little section of society, some sort of leader that this could go to rather than resting on her shoulders.

At the end of it all, however, there is the simple truth that Dean, Sam and Castiel know what is happening, they know who is doing it, and the look in Dean's eyes when he spoke, when he told her about Raphael and his offer, about Michael and the fact that he has turned on them, has turned on Castiel because he has remained at Dean's side through all of this, tells her that he is determined to stop it or die trying.

So she does not have all the facts, is positive that nothing she could do would make Dean tell her and it is with a sigh that she comes to her decision, goes back inside and returns to the back room, glances at her brother and Daniel who seem to be having a silent argument that does not so much stop, as pauses as she closes the door softly behind her. All eyes turn towards Cassidy as she speaks, voice hushed, tells them that she knows they are hiding something, that it is their prerogative to do so if they feel it necessary, but that she gets the feeling there is more to the whole 'angels are trying to kill us thing' than they are letting on.

It is not so much saying that they are free to leave, she could only stop them by killing them when all is said and done, and she has no intention of killing them, but she wants them out of her bar, wants them away and to stay gone until they have a solution or until she tells them otherwise. If they go against her, she will not stop one of the hunters who use her bar as a haven from reacting as they find most natural. They understand, do not fight her decision, they seem to know that they would not stand a chance against the numbers she has access to, and she watches as Daniel escorts them out the back door, listens to the roar of their car as it speeds into the night.

When Daniel returns his face is apologetic, he tells them that he is leaving again, someone needs to verify Winchester's story and of the three of them he is the best one to do it. Cassidy nods, whispers to him to be careful, and leaves the room so that her brother and friend can say their goodbyes in private.

Cassidy knows a lot about the weird and the wonderful, the scary and the dark, the natural and the unnatural and right now, she wishes that she knew more. Still, Daniel is going to go out and gather what information he can and she has her contacts across the country, with any luck, between them, they will be able to start finding answers and perhaps, just perhaps, they will be able to help the Winchesters do it right this time.

Somehow, that thought just does not fill her with much hope.

World
Dishonored by your world
Your world
I'm haunted by your world

Reviews are little Castiels that fly above our heads and mini Deans under the bed. A small Sam in hand and a tiny John by the chair, a review that can show how much you care.

Artemis