JACK OF ARTS
By: Karen B.
Spoiler warning: Season five related!!!
Summary: AU snippet. Season five related! Leaving Sam sleeping in their motel room, Dean goes to restock and refuel, getting more for his money than he bargained for.
Disclaimer: I don't own a thing, not even my muse…who insists on poking her/his/ its nose around where it does not belong -- under rocks and other weirdo things.
Thank you for reading my weirdo-strange ramblings.
I'd left Sam back at the motel sleeping, he needed the rest. I think ever since Lucifer had visited him in dream form, the kid was afraid to sleep. It took a lot of nagging on my part, and a few slugs of whiskey from my flask, but Sam was finally resting.
While Sam was sleeping, I figured I'd get us ready to move on. Shooting a few rounds of pool at the local tavern earned us the much needed bucks. After which, I did a few loads of laundry, organized the weapons, and picked up a few supplies. Beer, Cheese Curls, those Little Debbie snack cakes with the cream and jelly center. Last thing on the list before retrieving Sasquatch from his burrow -- fill up baby. I pulled into a small, and very outdated gas station. Getting out of the car, I unscrewed the gas cap and stuck the nuzzle into the tank. I shivered, noting the temperature had dropped. The wind picked up, capturing an old newspaper, pulling the pages apart and spinning them around on the pavement in front of me. Damn Apocalypse messing with the weather again.
I had no idea where Sam and I were going next. Fly-fishing would be nice. Disneyland. Hell, at this point a dirty, fly infested bar in Tijuana would be delightful. However, when you have heaven and hell tethered to your ass, good times are not an option.
I shivered again, this time zipping my jacket. Leaning against the Impala, I closed my eyes for a moment to ponder our next move. In-between the rustle of newspaper and the old-time pump clicking away dollars and cents, a majestic rumbling snapped my eyes open. I immediately noticed the man sitting on a shiny, black Harley-Davidson that had magically appeared at the pump next to me. I glanced up and down the road wondering where he had come from. Why I hadn't heard the distant rumble approaching. Was I slipping?
My attention went back to the rider. He was a slightly older man. Maybe an inch shorter than Sam, probably in his early forties, with neatly groomed, short, blond hair, and a clean as a babies-ass shave. He was muscular, rugged looking, wearing wrinkle-free khakis, and a buttoned down gray shirt underneath a cool, sleek, black leather jacket -- 'Big Daddy' stitched in yellow on the back. Not your typical biker type. Still straddling the big bike, he used the heel of his cowhide boot to push the kickstand down, weighting the Harley to one side and cutting the engine. Half-leaning against the handlebars, he pulled a pack of Marlboros -- the cheap non-filter variety -- from his pocket, along with a scratched, sliver Zippo lighter. He turned, looking me dead in the eye, catching me staring at him. His eyes were deep blue -- kind. He smiled, and I couldn't move. I got that been there, done that, I know this guy -- feeling. Normally, that would creep me out, but right now all I felt was warm, calm, peaceful almost -- weird.
"Nice bike," I finally manage to find my tongue.
"Got a few bucks you can donate?" The wind started blowing harder, swirling more trash and brown crinkled leaves around. Thumbing the flint wheel to produce a flame, he continued, "I'm on empty," he causally stated, not bothering to protect the dancing fire -- he lit up.
"What the hell?" I growled.
"Hell's a deep story, kid." He gave a quirky little laugh; guy had some sense of humor. Dropping the lighter and cigarette pack back into his front jacket pocket he asked, "You have a problem, son?"
"Dude, fire and gas don't mix." I waved a hand at the pumps. "You want to blow this whole place to kingdom come?"
Biker guy sucked in a long drag, his mouth forming an 'O', he puffed out several perfectly round, thick rings of smoke. For a moment, I watched the rings glide across the gas station lot. "Not in the business of blowing things to kingdom come…anymore," he laughed, rubbing the lit tip of his cigarette against his thigh, dousing his smoke. "So, you look like a nice dude, do you?" He tucked the cigarette behind his right ear for safekeeping.
"Do I, what?"
"Have a few bucks?" He continued to stare at me, extending a hand, palm side up.
I didn't normally hand out hard-earned cash. Especially to guys who looked like weekend on Wall Street. Nice dudes are suckers, lot of people make a living off the stupidity of others -- I should know.
"Nice car." He stopped staring at me to eyeball the Impala. "She's in good shape for a forty- two- year- old. Not too many of these babies left that look as fine as she does," he gave a low whistle. "Car's only as good as its owner."
I smiled. This guy knew his cars, and he knew what buttons to push -- I liked him. Done filling up, I hooked the nozzle back to the pump.
"You trying to snow me?" I flipped the gas cap shut.
"Yep, usually, works, too," he gave a little laugh.
"Okay, you got me, man." I reached for my wallet, but something was wrong -- my hand moving in slow motion.
"I just wanted you to know, Dean," Biker guy said soflty. "I met your brother, Sam, not too long ago. He was working as a busboy at a bar. Did you know little brother plays a mean game of darts? And I thought I was good."
"Sh...shit" I stuttered, taken off guard at the out of left field comment. As I said before, nice dudes are suckers. This was one powerful demon to be able to cloak and dagger around Cas's bone-tats. "Son of a…" I redirected my trembling hand from wallet, to the gun tucked behind my back in my waistband. Even in slow motion, I was fast, able to get my fingers wrapped around the handle. I didn't get much farther than that, however. Strange. I felt strange. I wasn't hurt. Nothing bleeding or even scratched, but I was frozen -- couldn't move, couldn't draw my weapon, my panic button going off.
"What'd you do to me?" I hissed.
"You're fine, don't worry. Just need you to calm down."
"You were with, Sam?" I eyed the man in front of me -- no black eyes, nothing to tell me he was a demon.
Crap, how'd this freak slip under my radar? Even now, I still didn't sense any danger, although I was fighting mad. Nobody puts the freeze on, Dean Winchester.
"Yes, I was with Sam for a while, but not in this form." Biker guy, or whoever he was, gave himself the once over. "I think I like this body better."
"Stay the hell away from my brother, you demonic son of a bitch!" I angrily spat.
"I would never hurt him, Dean," he claimed, using a calm tone. "I tried to help him. Poor kid." Biker guy's blue eyes turned watery, like the sea "You see…Sam thinks he doesn't deserve to be forgiven. I think I got through to the boy, though. I told him there's nothing so bad that you can't be forgiven for -- not even setting Lucifer free."
"W-who, who are you?" I tensed, still unable to move any part of my body.
"My name is Jack, but most people…they just call me God," he answered, eyes now twinkling with a clarity and pureness I'd never known.
"God?" I growled my disbelief. "As in, 'I'm the king of the world…Kumbya'…God?"
"Bingo. Or in your case, Dean, Yahtzee."
We stared at each other a moment. Demons lie, but to say he was God didn't make sense. My eye suddenly caught a little detail I'd missed before. The cord around biker guy's neck; from which dangled the same exact charm I wore. The same exact charm Cas had taken in hopes of finding God. My body may have been frozen -- but my mind wasn't -- and right now, the only thing going through my mind was that if biker guy was telling the truth -- I had a million things I wanted to say, ask, do.
Part of me wanted to friggin' gank the son of a bitch for everything he'd ever put my family through. I cringed. If he was God, would I go to hell -- again -- just for thinking the thought.
"Don't feel bad. You're not the first of my children to think that thought, Dean -- you're not going back to hell, kid, that much I can tell you."
"Crap." He read my mind.
"We all have our curses, son. You think it's a picnic being able to hear all the suffering going on, all the prayers, the pleading, and not to be able to fix everything -- answer them all.
"Why can't you? If you're really God... that is," I challenged.
Guy just shook his head sadly, retrieving the Zippo once again from his pocket. I was confused. God on a tortilla -- I got. God, riding a Hog, puffing on a cancer stick -- didn't register.
"I need a short break, kid. You aren't the only one who gets discouraged with family, you know." God, or so he said, pulled the cigarette from behind his ear, lighting back up. "I'm doing what I want to do for a change."
"Riding a Harley… panhandling for money, " I muttered.
"And thinking, Dean."
"Thinking about what?" Jack -- 'eh -- God shrugged. I'd get more answers from a rock. "So you're just going to ride off on your steel horse, " I sighed. " Into the sunset, while the filthy thing you cast down from heaven takes over the world?"
"Thanks for offering me up the donation, Dean." God avoided my question, yet again. "Looks like I won't be needing your hard- earned cash after all. Time to ride."
A whole other pile of bull-crap emotions and questions flew through me.
"Wait. Wait." I struggled to move, but still couldn't budge.
This could be the one person, supernatural being, spirit, God, Jack -- whatever -- that could stop me from having to kill my only brother, who could stop Lucifer, the apocalypse, bring world peace.
"Don't you care what's happening down here," I pleaded. "The entire world is about to cease to exist."
"I care. I care more than you could ever possibly imagine, Dean, but I told you, even I need a break from it all. Besides, just like Lucifer and Michael, like all of my angels… I can't interfere with free will. I don't ask others to jump into the water and swim, unless I'm willing to do the same."
"What the hell does that mean…I mean what the heaven…I mean… damn it, you're God."
"A Jack of all arts…" He let the words hang, taking another long drag.
"Master of none," I countered.
"What can I say," he talked around the Marlboro moving between his lips. "Contrary to what everyone down here thinks -- I'm not perfect." The wind blew harder, the cold sweeping through my jacket, like I wasn't even wearing one. God held up a single finger, and the wind stopped. "Dean, look, I just want you to know that nothing is ever as hopeless as it seems. You and Sam…" he took the cigarette between his fingers, flicking ash to the ground. "…You are both good men, you'll find a way to make Lucifer say Uncle."
"And if we can't?"
"I'll get back to you on that." God took one last drag, dropped the butt to the ground and crushed it beneath the heel of his boot.
"Excuse me." A voice from behind startled me, reflexively I turned. "You going to pay for that gas, mister, or stand around here all day talking to yourself?"
Realizing I was unfrozen, I pulled my gun, whirling back, but the Harley and its rider were gone.
I looked up and down the road, listening for the rumbling thunder of the heavy bike, not seeing so much as a dust cloud, the wind returning.
"Holy shit, mister." I twisted around to see the attendant's hands fly up, eyes wide with fear as he stared at my gun.
"Easy. Sorry." I tucked the gun back into my waistband.
"I'm calling po-po!" The attendant took a few uneasy steps backward.
"No, no. Sorry. I'm sorry. Wait." I dug out my wallet. "You didn't happen to see…" I paused. "Never mind, here…" I handed the guy a fifty. "Keep the change."
"Whatever, man." The attendant took the money, scurrying off with his prize.
I glanced down to the pavement. "What the..." Bending down to pick up the crushed butt, I eyed it suspiciously, then stuffed the used cigarette into my pocket.
In a flash, I got back in the car. Having no doubt po-po would be here soon, I fired up the Impala, pulling away from the gas station.
I drove back to the motel without the radio on, keeping an eye on my rearview, every now and again getting a whiff of Jack's -- God's cigarette. Uneasy thoughts ran rampant through my brain. I'd gotten no answers from the big guy. Had I really even seen him? Was he just a crazy, want- to- be biker? On the other hand, and more likely, was I delusional? One too many knocks in the head. Yet, biker/God guy had said he'd been with Sam at a bar where little brother told me he'd worked a few weeks as a busboy. How could he know that if he hadn't really been there?
Maybe there was an all knowing being, and he was alive, roaming the countryside, taking on form after form. If so, was he our ace in the hole? Would he come through for Sam, me -- the world -- in the end?
I didn't know Jack -- about Jack. What I did know about Jack, whoever, whatever he, this was -- was right about one thing -- Sam and I would find a way. Lucifer was going to say uncle -- so help me, God.
That's all she wrote.