A/N: Just a note before beginning: this fic is cannon up to Episode 5.03 and no further, unless otherwise stated in a note or in the story. Now, please enjoy, and review if you have the opportunity! Any kind of comments, constructive criticism, etc., are welcome!

"Life sucks. Get a helmet." -- Special Agent Victor Henrikson


It was a hot and muggy night. Streets were vacant, doors were closed, and all establishments were empty. The silence was thick, the air just as heavy. It was a night that felt dangerous to be out in. Just like every other night.

Suddenly, a loud blaring siren cut through the silence. Slicing through the thick night air, the siren brought with it a new presence. Two men sprinted down a dark and narrow street. At first what they were running from was unclear, but soon into view came a mob of scruffy men and women, different from their prey only in that their eyes were pitch black.

"Almost there, almost there," breathed one of the two men as the pair slid around a corner.

"We can't lead them there!" the other growled, glancing over his shoulder as the crowd drew ever closer.

"Fine. You head home and I'll distract them."

"What?! No--"

"Go!" the man shouted, shoving his partner into a well-hidden alleyway as he ran on. The momentum of his run carried him far into the alley where he hid in the shadows, watching with wide eyes as the army of Croatoan Virus victims chased after his counter part.

He was tempted to follow his partner, but thought better of it and decided to do as ordered and head back to the safe house. Making sure that all of the Croats were past him, the fugitive quickly dodged out of the alley and traveled a path well known to him. How many times had they outrun Croats down these streets? How many times had they stole through the streets during daylight, just waiting to be ambushed? And for how much longer could they keep it up?

He ran down one street, then turned down another. Ignoring the incessant siren, he finally came to a stop outside an old, decrepit looking house, much like the many other houses lining the streets. He glanced around to make sure no Croats were in sight, then knocked on the door: three knocks, each one second apart. Eyes peered out from behind heavy blinds in the window. There was a minute long wait as the sound of a large object being moved echoed from behind the door. Then the door swung open.

"Castiel! Where's Dean?"

"On his way. He became preoccupied with some infected humans."

"And you just let him go off on his own? Without backup?!"

"I had no choice, Anna." Castiel stepped inside, quickly shutting the door behind him and locking it's five locks. "He left me behind. But he'll be back soon. He always is."

"Sure. Help me with this."

The two angels - or rather, fallen angels - took hold of a large, heavy dresser and began shoving it in front of the door. It was a safety precaution they had been taking for years now: the dresser barred the door from any unwanted guests. Sometimes it helped, sometimes it didn't. But when it did, it was worth the extra precaution.

Just as the dresser was back in place, three knocks came from the other side of the door. Castiel moved to the window, which had been boarded up from the inside with a small gap in the wood so that one could peek through the boards and blinds to see who was at the door. The angel nodded to Anna, who once again moved the dresser to the side as Castiel unlocked the five deadbolts.

The instant the fifth lock was removed, Dean flew inside, slamming the door behind him.

"What a rush!" he shouted, pumping a fist in the air as Castiel once again busied himself with the locks and dresser. Anna, on the other hand, turned to Dean.

"Don't you ever split up again!" she growled, slapping Dean's arm. "I was worried!"

"Don't get so worked up," Dean said, rolling his eyes. "Nothing bad happened, did it?"

"Worked up? Worked up?! Dean Winchester, there is alittle girlupstairs--"

"A little girl?" Dean's eyes widened as though in surprise. "I almost forgot!"

And with that he took off running upstairs, returning moments later with a small baby cradled in his arms. The baby's eyes lit up at the sight of him, a smile on her lips.

"This little girl?" Dean asked, smiling wide. He bounced the baby in his arms, making her giggle. "How could I forget about her?"

"She certainly didn't forget about you," Anna sighed, smiling slightly. "She started crying as soon as you walked out that door, and I could hardly get her to stop. Just got her to sleep half an hour ago."

"Is that true?" Dean asked the baby. "Did you miss your daddy?"

The baby giggled.

"I think you can take that as a yes," said a voice from the kitchen. Dean turned to look towards the kitchen doorway and smiled at an man with a scruffy beard and trucker's hat seated in a wheelchair.

"You would know, Bobby. You would know." The Winchester glanced around at Anna and Castiel. "So what are we waiting for?"

"We've been waiting for you," Bobby said as he wheeled into the kitchen, the others following behind him. Ellen Harvelle and Rufus Turner were seated at the table, examining a map. Joanna Harvelle was standing off in a corner, speaking in a hushed voice to Chuck Shurley. It was a small meeting, after which they would all disperse and inform other members of the Resistance about up coming missions.

"Sorry we're late," Castiel said as Ellen, Rufus, Jo and Chuck turned to meet them. "Dean's bravado was distracted."

Dean's eyes rolled as he took a seat at the head of the table, his daughter nestled into his arms. The others sat as well, and Bobby rolled up opposite Dean. The meeting was in session.

"I suppose the biggest question is, did you find it?" Bobby asked somewhat anxiously, usually the first to speak during these meetings. Dean shook his head, caressing the baby's hand.

"No. It was another fake lead."

"Dammit!" Rufus swore, slamming his fist on the table. The bang startled the baby, who immediately began to cry. Dean rocked her gently, calming her until she was silent and then turned his eyes to Rufus.

"Chill out, this isn't the first time and it won't be the last."

"Maybe so," Rufus growled, "but how long can we afford to be defenseless?"

"We're not exactly defenseless, here, Rufus," Jo protested. "We've got holy water, salt, and Croats can be killed just like any other human."

"And we're sitting here with our thumbs up our asses, looking for a knife and a gun that we don't even know exist anymore!" Rufus rose to his feet, anger emanating from him. "If he wanted to, Lucifer could nail us all in a heartbeat. And we all know who'd help him."

"That's enough," Castiel threatened, eyes turning toward Rufus.

"What're you gonna do, angel boy?" Rufus murmured as Castiel's hands clenched into fists. "Oh, I forgot. You're not exactly an angel anymore, are you?"

"Seriously, enough!" Dean shouted, causing his daughter to once more break into tears. The Winchester hushed her, handed her off to Anna, then looked between Rufus - still seething - and Castiel - looking down in shame at the mention of his no longer being an angel. "Rufus, if you have a problem with my authority, why don't you get it off your chest?"

"Iamgetting it off my chest," Rufus said, stepping towards Dean. "All we do is sit around, waiting for you to find the magic gun that may or may not be in the country or the magic knife that you lost to the demons in the first place! Meanwhile, all you do is run errands with your BFF ex-angel," his gaze turned to Castiel, "or screw around with your pet Graceless," and his eyes turned to Anna.

Neither angel spoke, and Dean simply glared at the retired hunter.

"Are you finished yet?" Dean asked, staring intensely at Rufus.

"Not exactly."

"Rufus--" Bobby tried to intervene, the only one who might have been able to curtail the enraged hunter.

"I'm only saying what we've all been thinking."

"If that's the way you feel," Dean said, "then let's hear it."

"The gun and the knife are important. They might could kill Lucifer, and they'd sure be a helluva help in fending off Croats. Fine. I get that. But while you're out there running around, trying to find all this stuff, there are people out there dying. Our people are out there dying. In the line of duty!"

"You think I don't get that?"

"I'm convinced you don't. And won't until you lose someone close to you."

"Is that what you think?" Dean growled, standing and approaching Rufus. "That I haven't lost people close to me because of this fight?"

"You gonna give me the speech now?" Rufus smirked.

"I've lost my entire family. My mom--"

"Remind us who she died for?"

"My dad--" Dean seethed, his anger rising.

"And I'm sure he'd be proud of how well you're doing," Rufus said sarcastically.

"My brother."

The room was suddenly dead silent. Nobody moved, nobody spoke, nobody objected. Even the baby could feel the stillness in the room, knew that this was a time for silence. Eyes flicked between Dean's towering figure and the door as though an all knowing force was expected to enter at any moment and break up these covert, illegal meetings.

"You make it sound like he's--"

"He's dead to me," Dean growled. "He's gone, and he's never coming back. Just like everyone else we've lost in this fight. We're the Resistance. We're the last men standing. We're the only chance left for this miserable waste of a planet to come out on top. That means people die. But you suck it up, you be a man, and you keep on fighting. If the mission statement doesn't sound very pretty to you anymore 'cause you're getting tired of being on the losing side, then there's the door." Dean jeered a thumb over his shoulder. "Make sure it hits you on the way out."

Rufus' eyes narrowed.

"As for us, we've got work to do."

For a moment, it looked as though Rufus might actually leave. His gaze turned towards the door, the wheels in his head audibly turning. And just when everyone was sure he would charge out, he blinked, looked downward, and took his seat once more.

Dean's eyes roamed over the others for a moment, then a bitter smile wrapped itself around his face.

"Alright, so whaddya have for me?"


Lucifer was silent, eyes trained silently on the world beyond his window. The world that he had overrun, that he had molded. The world that he had swiped from under his Father's nose and made his own. And to think he had done the majority of it without the aid of his vessel....

"It's beautiful, isn't it?" Lucifer said airily, a smile twisting across his features.

"Yes, my lord," Sam Winchester replied.

"And you are proud of the work that I... that we have done?"

"Of course."

A lie.

"And you distrust me so much that you would lie to me, even after all this time?" Lucifer smirked.

"No," Sam said confidently. "I trust you above all others."

"Above all others?" Lucifer asked. "Even above your sister?"

The Winchester's gaze fell.

"I envy you, Samuale," Lucifer said, and Sam winced slightly at the name his Master had given him so long ago. "She is beautiful - as far as the standards of your race go."

Sam said nothing.

"When she first came to live with us I admit that I was worried that she might become a distraction.... And when I learned of your intensifying relationship... well, let's just say I wasn't thrilled."

"Yes, my lord."

"But she has become a perfect addition to our little family." Lucifer turned to Sam and smiled. "And the public - at least what's left of them - adore her."

"Yes, my lord."

"For now, she is your sister. And one day, on the day that you say yes - because one day, Samuale, you will - I will be Lord and have powers unrivaled by anyone. Even my Father."

Sam nodded slowly.

"And she will be our Queen." He chuckled, then added, "Whatever that means."

Sam's gaze fell to the floor.

"Now, go and see that she's ready. It's about time for the festival."