Hunter Of The Shadows, Book 2:

Hunter Rising

Happy birthday to Darksupernatural!

Let the Winchester werewolf adventures continue...

Finally, it's here! I hear you exclaim.

Warnings: The usual – bad language, blood, general goriness and my OC is as smug as ever. Suggestion of nudity but NO Wincest or Slash, as Dean explains in due course. Not that I hold any prejudice, it just doesn't happen in this fic.

Also please note: Season one and two spoilers, though it doesn't follow the exact same sequence of events and the circumstances have been completely altered.

So, have I covered everything? I think so.

*takes deep breath*

Plenty of Limp Sam, with protective Dean and Tobius.

With awesome Bobby and Pastor Jim, by popular demand, and I just love them.

Many many thanks go out to Phx and Devon99 for the beta and all their help and advice.

Apologies for the formatting. Fan fiction dot net are being arseholes as usual.

Chapter 1

Now…

Click.

The picture is wobbly as the camera is moved clumsily into place.

Various images appear briefly before it settles down: a brightly coloured and flowery blanket, a lumpy mattress, but most disturbing of all is the pain wracked face of Sam Winchester, blood smeared up his neck and crusted in his hair.

Presumably the camera is moved to a nightstand, because the audience can no longer see the occupant of the bed, but an extremely worried looking Tobius Le Salle sits beside it.

Soft panting and whimpers can be heard every now and then, along with wet choking sounds and rasping coughs. A shaky hand comes up to grip desperately at his grandfather's flannel shirt.

Tobius gently grasps the flailing hand, pressing a small kiss to the bloodstained flesh, tries to smile and croons reassuringly, though the look in his eye suggests he is anything but reassured.

Dean's worried, tragic face appears over Tobius' shoulder.

"How's it goin'? Is he…?"

The older werewolf sighs tiredly and his shrug is a little despondent.

"I just don't know," Tobius replies, quietly. "He's very badly hurt, Dean. I've done all I can for him. Now we play the waiting game."

He raises his hand and the camera gets a flash of a white cloth, stained dark red with blood, before it's thrown aside.

The two werewolves appear helpless, scared and heartbroken.

Dean's blinking back tears, and reaches out to his son when he whimpers again.

"D-Dean…"

"I'm here Sammy," the fatherbrother replies softly. "I'll always be here. Not leaving without you…"

Then…

Hey Sammy?

Yuh?

Great idea coming here…

I-I guess… he still sounded a little sulky, but at least he was talking to me. Finally.

Aw c'mon. We needed the break. You needed the break.

Sam sat up, accompanied by a rattle of metal, and huffed through his snout.

Yeah, but was it really necessary to chain me up? Dude! It's so degrading. He raised a large paw forlornly to indicate the heavy iron manacle. A thick iron chain kept Sam securely tethered to a large tree

I fixed him with a long, hard stare.

Let's see. First time you took off, you got in a fight with a grey wolf pack.

Sam dipped his head, growling petulantly. Wasn't my fault…

THEN, I continued, still glaring at him, you nearly get caught by Animal Control.

Sam whined softly, and pulled at his chain. How did I know someone was gonna call the pound?

I couldn't believe this kid! For all his smarts and genius IQ, his recent display of stupidity was baffling.

Count yourself lucky I only stopped at your paw! Tobius was all for putting a collar on you, and I can't say I blame him! I growled angrily, snorting and tossing my thick mane. With only six months off from my quarter century, I was growing taller, more muscular, coat thickening as my prime approached; Sam might be taller than me in human form, but as a wolf, I was gonna be fucking huge! I felt sure Sire was planning some kind of celebration but he wouldn't talk; guy sure liked his secrets.

But I was digressing, and the pup needed his ass kicked.

Sam, we're supposed to be a pack, right? A team? I padded up and down a few times, just for effect, and all the while I sensed the kid's sad gaze follow my every move. How the hell are we going to protect you when you keep running off?!

My thoughts turned to a dull roar in our minds.

Sam whined again, and ducked his head to lick at his imprisoned paw.

Still padding up and down, I cast my mind back to last month, when Sam went missing for four hours, and turned up limping, bleeding, and exhausted beyond reason. We ain't into taking out an already endangered species, so the grey wolf pack struck damn lucky with us.

And a few days later, we stumbled on him being chased by two uniformed guys armed with tranq guns. Tobius and I had to undergo a real fast change, make a dash for the impala and head out after him. To cut a long car/wolf chase story short, Sam ended up taking a flying leap through the rear passenger window in order to escape the clutches of Animal Control.

And let me tell ya. Two naked guys cruising down the road with an oversized wolf on the back seat?

That'll turn some heads all right!

Sammy. I softened my approach a little. Why? Just tell me why you're doin' this to yourself, huh?

Sad and frightened blue-green eyes turned my way.

He… he bled into my mouth Dean. Demon blood…

And suddenly I understood why he'd been acting up, like I shouldn't have worked it out sooner. Sam was mad as hell, madder than he'd ever been before in his entire life. He'd been violated, effectively raped, all control over his life stolen, and it scared him.

I guess I couldn't blame the poor kid. He was still reeling from all the revelations at the cabin.

Our Mom sold his soul to a demon before he was even born, probably in exchange for the very guy that later fathered us, and went on to abuse and shoot Sam when he was just fifteen years old.

On Sam's six month birthday, the demon returned, bled into Sam's mouth, killed our mother, and walked away, leaving the Winchester family in pieces and it's youngest with dormant psychic powers.

Years later, John Winchester was killed by Tobius Le Salle, non lunar werewolf, my Sire and werewolf father. But not before Dad plugged Sammy with a silver bullet, whilst he was actually trying to shoot me.

The kid saved my life, and nearly died as a result.

Would have died.

But I bit him.

I sank my fangs into my little brother's flesh, and changed everything.

Tobius wasn't convinced Sam would survive because we were once blood brothers. It's considered genetically impossible to turn a sibling, the violent rejection killing the recipient outright. The fact the kid not only survived, but flourished, tipped Sire off that something was amiss.

For my part? With Sam's survival came the news that I was now his father, and Tobius was an extremely proud grandfather.

It shook me up, treading out into the scary waters of fatherhood for the first time, but I gotta tell ya, Sammy made it so easy for me. But then, I've been taking care of the kid most of my life. Becoming his sire was a natural progression.

Saving Sam's life by turning him into a non lunar carried another side effect. It annulled the demon deal, but left Sam's slowly emerging psychic powers intact, and the yellow eyed bastard was furious.

Sam's first experience with his powers wasn't a pleasant one. His girlfriend and future mate for life was killed during an explosion. The poor kid dreamt about it for days before it happened, not realising it was something a little more serious than just a nightmare. And I know he's still beating himself up over it.

On top of all that, Lenore, head of the passive vamp nest down in Florida, confirmed along with Bobby Singer and Pastor Jim Murphy, that the demon had trained all the other special children like Sam – or at least, would have been like him, had he not been turned into a non lunar – and sent them after us.

Until we had solid plans, and decided how we were going to handle these psychic kids, if and when they put in an appearance, we eventually headed to our special place. It was a long journey, with the three of us taking turns behind the wheel of the Impala, and Sammy was quiet for most of it.

He wasn't sleeping, and along the way, Tobius had taken the desperate step of drugging the kid from time to time. It was necessary to keep him safe. An insomniac Sam is a wandering Sam, hence his middle of the night exploits, restlessly prowling the neighbourhood and finding trouble wherever he went.

It became tiring and worrying. Sam would limp home in the early hours, angry and injured, so I'd taken to going with him, but it soon became apparent supervision wasn't the answer. Intervention was, however.

So Tobius slipped a few powerful herbal sedatives into either his food or milk of an evening, allowing the kid to drift off into a seemingly natural sleep. There were no real side effects, other than he seemed a little woozy for a few hours after waking up. But we guarded him closely, never leaving him alone whilst he was so vulnerable. Sam wasn't stupid; he knew what we were up to, but didn't seem to have the energy to protest. May be he even welcomed the respite of a drug induced sleep. Can't really blame him for that either, I guess.

But right now, we needed to talk about this. Because he had managed to sneak by us once again.

Kiddo, I know you're angry, and you've every right to be… I stopped when he snuffled miserably, fangs gently nibbling at the iron cuff.

It's not just that. Sam stopped, rested his head on his huge paws and huffed softly. I g-guess I'd better tell you.

Tell me what?

Those dreams I had? About Jessica's death?

Uhuh? I sure didn't like where he was going with this, and shifted closer.

I've been having… others. Dreams I mean, and sometimes… he hesitated, soft eyes roaming my face. A nasty sense of deja-vu assailed me when his mind whispered

And sometimes they come true.

We kind of guessed that much, what with his psychic crap and all.

But I definitely didn't like where he was going with this. It sounded as though…

Sam. I tried to stay calm, my voice measured and precise. Are you saying you've been investigating these dreams… alone?

If ever a wolf looked like a sheep, well, that wolf was Sam right now. Downright sheepish. It should've looked cute, but my temper was rising.

Yeah, his mind whispered.

Jesus Christ.

He wasn't deliberately trying to piss me off, I was certain, but the end result was just the same.

What the hell, Sam?! I sprang forward and clamped my jaws round the soft fur on the scruff of his neck, forcing his head down again, and virtually burying his snout in the grass. He struggled a little but soon stilled when I let loose a fierce warning growl from deep in my throat. What the hell were you thinking?!

Giving him a hard shake, I growled again. Sam didn't fight back, which surprised me a little. I half expected the kid to snap.

Well? I'm waiting, and it better be good!

All I got for my troubles was a soft whimper. Not of pain, at least not physical pain, but one born of fear and heartache.

I couldn't save her, Dean. I couldn't save Jess… but maybe I can save others.

Anger draining away, like surface water off black top after a heavy rainfall, I released my hold, backed off and lay down beside him. Sam's head still rested on the ground, eyes clenched shut.

Sammy? I gently batted his muzzle with mine, trying to push his long snout up again.

C'mon kid, talk to me? Please, just let me help you… that's what I'm here for.

He'd asked me once, before we left the cabin. He'd asked for my help and I was all too willing to give it. But it clearly hadn't been enough.

I just… I don't want you and Tobius getting hurt because of me… his mind whispered. I was trying to handle it on my own.

He pushed his muzzle under mine, snuffling softly into my neck, just like he used to when he was a pup, seeking shelter and warmth. I was just glad he still felt I could provide it, if nothing else.

Aw Sammy, stop trying to protect us. We're all in this together, ok? Promise me you'll tell us next time you have a vision?

Sam snuffled again then raised his head, fixing his brilliant blue-green gaze on me.

I-I promise.

A smiling Tobius in human form appeared from the tree line, carrying wood and kindling in his arms.

Good to hear it, pup. Tobius set the wood down beside his grandson, then eyed the young wolf critically. We'll say no more about it.

He reached over, unfastened the manacle and gently rubbed Sam's paw, gaze locking with his.

I take it you boys still prefer your fish cooked?

Sam whined softly in grateful agreement and licked Tobius' chin.

We spent a leisurely day by the river, 'fishing' with my usual finesse and style, Sammy laughing his ass off, generally play fighting, and rolling around in the lush grass.

It was nice being back here again. The last time we visited this place was before Sam's first change, before Gordon kidnapped, traumatized and tortured the poor kid, which was the main reason I drew the line at chaining him up with a collar. I was worried it would bring back bad memories for him. Like he didn't have enough of those! So it came down to his paw, or drugging him again, but we needed him lucid, to open up and talk to us, without the potential for him to run off and get in trouble again.

We stayed the night, all three of us curled round each other by the camp fire.

Bobby and Pastor Jim were due to meet up with us the next night, and this would prove a rare moment in Tobius Le Salle's personal history. These were the first humans he'd ever entrusted with the exact coordinates to our special hiding place in the wilderness. The only place on God's green Earth you'll ever find Dean Winchester meditating of all things.

But we needed the safety of being well and truly off the radar, because apparently Bobby and Jim Murphy had more news for us.

That was a little disconcerting and we hoped like hell it was good news. We already knew Sam was being targeted by the psychic kids with a mission to capture him and bring him into their fold. Azazel, the yellow eyed demon who originally killed our mom, was mad at us for ruining his plans. He expected Sam, like the other kids, to eventually step up and cross over to the demon's side, essentially turning evil.

By turning Sam into a werewolf when he was fifteen, I'd well and truly fucked that up.

Happily.

But what if these kids succeeded where Azazel had failed? What if they managed to get pass Tobius and me? What would… could they do to Sam that he would be forced to change sides?

What did Azazel have up his sleeve?

It must have been something powerful, because the way we saw it? It seemed like Sam wasn't going to have a choice in the matter.

So whatever Jim and Bobby had to tell us, my fingers… claws... were crossed that they had the answers to all of the above.

These visions were driving the kid to the brink of insanity that much I was sure of.

And Tobius was about to point out something else that had my blood pressure soaring.

Sam, I know I promised we'd say no more about it.

Sam shifted and peered over my neck. Huh?

Tobius sat up, paws crossed as he gazed into the flames.

If your visions are being orchestrated by Azazel, then there's another very important reason why you should not be investigating these alone. The ancient wolf turned to regard his grandson. They could easily be a trap. To get you away from us.

Sam snorted. Well yeah, that's kinda obvious, right? That's why I took off. That way you guys…

I meant, Tobius' voice was quiet but strong and firm in our heads, a trap for all three of us.

If he were in human form right then, no doubt an eyebrow would have been raised.

I gather you've heard of the expression divided we fall?

Sam considered that with wide guilty eyes.

Sure. It's easier to defeat us if we split up, and we don't have each other's backs. Yeah, I shoulda thought of that… he reached up with one of those rear huge paws and scratched at an ear, morosely. Sorry guys. Guess I screwed up again.

I stretched my head back in a wide, toothy yawn, then leaned over and playfully snapped at Sam's muzzle.

Don't sweat it, kid. You've had a lot to deal with.

S'no excuse, he grumbled, batting me away with the same paw he used to scratch his ear. I need to think clearly for once.

Amen to that!

Tell us what happened out there.

Sam seemed to think about that for a long moment, then sighed.

It was that time I was gone for a few days.

Oh yeah, I remembered that all right. Not long after we hit the road and left the cabin behind, the little shit took off and used all those years of training to keep us off his scent. Needless to say, the fight that followed his return to the pack was fairly impressive.

The first vision was of a kid by the name of Max Miller, or more accurately, his father.

It wasn't pretty and certainly came with no happy ending.

Max had been badly abused by his father and uncle for most of his life. He endured years of hate, savage beatings, and terrible neglect, but the worst part had to be the blame.

His father blamed him for his mother's death. She burnt to death in his nursery when he was six months old, and his dad never let him forget it.

Just a few weeks ago, Mr Miller Senior committed suicide in his garage, locked in the car with a hosepipe pumping poisonous exhaust fumes through the window. At least, that was what the police reports said, but Sam had a very different take on it.

Turned out young Max was a highly skilled telekinetic, his new gift acquired around the time Sam's psychic powers came about. And that couldn't have been a coincidence. Armed with the power of TK he'd arranged his father's death, and went on to slaughter his uncle, without so much as raising a finger. His step mom would have been next, impaled through the eye with her own kitchen knife, until Sam saw it all in another vision and stepped in.

Unfortunately, Max wasn't happy with that outcome and in spite of Sam's valiant attempt to talk him round, to persuade him there was hope and he wasn't alone, the kid TK'd Sam's Taurus right out of his jacket, and shot himself in the head.

Nice.

Jesus, Dean. Sam muttered, mournfully. Is that all you can say?

The kid was too far gone, Sammy, I replied, sadly, the only consolation I could offer. You tried, ok? You did your best…

Sam sprang to his paws with an unhappy growl. And what about what John did to me, huh? Would you have said the same if I turned out like that? If you hadn't come for me in time?

I rose up, slowly, towering over the pup. No. And you know why? 'Cos you wouldn't have turned out like Max. No way. You're not him, Sammy. You never could be.

Glowing blue-green eyes levelled on me. How can you be so sure?

I didn't want another fight, not tonight. It was the last thing we needed.

Because, my teeth gently but pointedly nipped at one of his ears, puffing warm breath into the shell. I know you.

Tobius had remained silent up until now. How many more visions have you suffered so far, pup?

Sam hung his head. There were two more.

Scott Carey, also Sam's age, had the strange ability to fry anyone he touched. Kinda like that chick off Angel, but without the skin tight rubber and nowhere near as hot.

It was too late by the time Sam got there. Carey had already been taken out by another hunter, one that Sam wisely steered clear of. Hunters who slaughter anything vaguely supernatural wouldn't think twice about taking out a non-lunar.

Ansem Weems and his twin brother Andy Gallagher were involved in the last vision. Split up, when their biological mother put them up for adoption, their adopted moms were both killed in a fire when they were babies. Andy's gift was one most guys would give their eye teeth for: the power of persuasion. The guy could get anything he wanted, and I mean anything, just by asking. Even more incredible, his twin brother didn't need to speak; if necessary he could thought project and that was some scary shit right there, given our non-lunar tendencies. Thank God Sam wasn't affected by it, though maybe that was because of his own psychic abilities. Andy sounded like a cool guy, but Ansem was another kettle of fish. He wanted revenge on the people that took away his only family through adoption, and that included Holly Beckett, their biological mom, and the doctor that delivered the twins and arranged the paperwork. Their deaths were pretty gruesome, it had to be said, but Ansem didn't stop there. He wanted rid of Andy's former girlfriend, someone he saw as another threat to being with his brother. Sam had another vision at this stage which lead to him saving the girl, Tracey, from a watery suicide, but earned himself a tree branch round the back of the head for his trouble.

Ansem, it seemed, didn't appreciate Sam's interference, and tried once again to persuade the girl to jump to her death. Andy saved the day by shooting his twin.

Ok.

If I'd been in human form right then, I might well have pinched the bridge of my nose. There was something I couldn't quite wrap my head around, though I shouldn't have been surprised. This was Sam after all.

Uh... you wanna explain some of the terminology you used there?

Sam looked genuinely confused. Like what?

I huffed and shared a tired glance with Sire.

Like, the fact that these kids were part of Azazel's little army, and you were trying to save them?

Uh… yeah? They're still human, Dean. This isn't their fault. Sam insisted, eyes narrowing slightly.

Fact is, Sam, these are some of the exact same kids that are coming after us, remember? The ones who are meant to take you back to Azazel?

I don't think so, Tobius interrupted. Sam was sent out to see these children for a reason, perhaps to tempt him with the kind of other skills he could develop under his tutelage…?

His voice trailed off as he glanced from Sam to me.

Yeah, I got it. This was Azazel's way of playing nice, if you will, and the only way he would be able get Sam to cooperate was to fool the kid into thinking he could save people. These were perhaps the rejects of his plan, the ones that didn't pan out, and he found another way to use them.

Clearly it hadn't worked, merely freaked the poor kid out all the more.

Sam's furry head swivelled back and forth between us. So these were just… uh… test subjects?

Tobius gave himself a thorough shake and stretched out his body, paws scrabbling at the ground. I'd say so. This was just the first stage of his games. Next time, he won't be quite so… polite.