"Are you sure you're reading that map right?"
"Yes!" Bobby insisted for the hundredth time. Dean knew that he was probably being overly hard on the man but…Sam's life was on the line here. He could always apologise later when he knew that his little brother was safe. "Maybe you should get one of those sat-nav things that you kids use these days."
"Don't even," Dean said as he shook his head. "I don't need a satellite navigation system. I need you to give me the right directions!"
"I have, you idjit!" Bobby said. "Maybe Cas didn't give us the right place."
"Why wouldn't he? It wouldn't be in his best interests to screw with us!"
"Well, unless Sam's roaming around in some supersized store, I'm afraid that we've been had." Dean looked up at the giant store with a frown on his face. It seemed kind of innocuous at first but…it'd definitely be big enough for someone to hide in. Hell anywhere would be big enough for several demons and a rogue angel to hide in.
"Or under," he mumbled to himself. "They're under the store!" He stopped the car and was out before Bobby could even blink. Bobby met up with him by the trunk and he gave Dean a concerned look. He was probably going to start bitching about how they didn't have a plan but at this point Dean didn't really give a shit. Plans had a tendency to go wrong at any given moment, meaning that making one would be futile. Especially since they didn't have any idea what was happening inside.
"Don't even say anything," he said through gritted teeth as Bobby watched him silently.
"Wasn't going to," Bobby said eventually with a shrug. "So you're just going to walk through the front door?" Dean scoffed as he turned to give Bobby and incredulous look,
"I might be reckless, but I'm not an idiot Bobby."
"Coulda fooled me," Bobby mumbled as he grabbed a weapon from the open trunk. Dean rolled his eyes and carried on rooting through his trunk. Once they were both sufficiently armed, they nodded once at each other before they turned and started to walk towards the building. Dean double checked that the demon knife was in his inner jacket pocket.
"We've got the element of surprise on our side," he whispered as they approached one of the back entrances. He was sure that either Crowley or Darcy would use their mojo to sense their arrival, but they didn't know what the plan of action was.
"We don't even know what the plan of action is!" Bobby hissed back incredulously as Dean slipped through the door, drawing his weapon just in case Crowley had some of this thugs casing the entire building.
"All that matters right now is getting Sam back," Dean said as they inched along the dark, musty scented hallway. "And killing that bastard Crowley." Dean was pretty sure that Bobby would find a way to bitch about that despite the fact that Crowley had been a pain in their asses from day one.
"I can get down with that," Bobby said surprisingly.
"Even though he got you your legs back?" Dean whispered back as a door opened somewhere. He raised a finger to silence any response that Bobby would have come up with. As footsteps approached their current location, Dean darted out and tossed out a small dash of holy water. There was a loud hissing sound as the demon reacted and Dean reached out and stabbed it in the gut, seconds after it had lunged at them.
"Looks like we're getting warmer," Bobby remarked gruffly as they continued on with their foray into the store. "Oh and for the record, the only place for demons in downstairs in hell where they belong. Question my alliance again and I just might be forced to give you a good clip 'round the ear. 'Sides, if we kill him, there's a good chance that I'll get my soul back."
Dean grinned to himself as they located the stairway. He'd like to see Bobby try.
"Why are you so busy trying to destroy each other?" Sam asked, as he stood by the doorway, with Crowley sneering at him and Darcy looking ahead stoically. "Why can't you just forget about each other's existence and just carry on as normal?" Crowley laughed at that. It was an ugly, harsh sound and Sam felt himself getting angry. However, the hopeful look on Darcy's face made him calm down almost instantly. If he was going to kill Crowley, he'd have to do it the old fashioned way. Sam wasn't going to let out the one part of himself that he wasn't sure he knew how to control. Not if he wanted to get out of there alive.
"They cast us out because we wanted more power," Crowley spat out dangerously. "Now they want to get rid of us because our power is so great that it rivals theirs! They started this, not us."
"Oh please," Darcy said as she took a step closer to Crowley. "Your so called power is fuelled by greed and misery. That's not power, it's evil. And there's no place for it. Not now, not ever. One day the angels will find a way to remove you and your pathetic creatures to a place that is far, far away from anything else. You won't even see it coming."
"That's nice and all," Sam said. "But how many times have you tried and failed? How about this, the two of you walk away from this now. Just go, forget about your irrational plans. Because when my brother gets here, there won't be much time for chatting."
"I preferred it when you whimpering like a baby in the corner," Crowley replied in response. "Sod off." He raised his hand and made a motion in Sam's direction, but nothing happened. Sam wasn't propelled backwards and sent crashing into a wall. He didn't feel any surges of power, just confident in himself. He knew that there was a way out so he was standing his ground.
No one was going to screw around with him anymore.
"Let me guess, you just happened to find a demon blood flavoured juice lying around?" Crowley laughed and shook his head. "Look at you, the boy king that never was, reduced to drinking from filth from peasants. We all tried to warn Azazel about you."
"He doesn't need the blood to destroy you," Darcy said. "It's all there inside of him. And if he has any sense he'll put all of that power to good use and destroy hell once and for all. Come on, Sam. Think about all of the bad things that have happened to you. That was all demons, wasn't it? They were responsible for your mother's death, that pretty girlfriend of yours, your father and Dean being sent to hell. This would be the ultimate revenge."
Sam turns to look at her and for a second he's caught by her persuasive gaze, like she's trying to entrance him somehow. Just for a second he considers her words. She's not wrong…but she's not right either. The ultimate revenge wouldn't even matter to him anymore. He's been down that road and it's never gotten him anyway. Sometimes you just had to deal with the hand that life dealt you and just move on. Sam just wishes that someone had been there to tell Darcy that before she'd offered herself up to whoever the hell dished out the angels.
"What a load of bollocks." Crowley scoffed. "We sculpted him into what he is today. We created him. All of those things had to happen for a reason. Your lot just couldn't resist. You just had to shoehorn your way into our plans. Angel vessels? Pathetic. How did that work out? Remind me again how Winchester here outsmarted both Michael and good old Lucifer? Last time I was down there, I made sure to pay them a visit."
"From what I hear, Michael knew the risks," Darcy answered. "We weren't to know that Lucifer was apparently tired of the very same battle he started all those millennia ago."
"Ha!" Crowley replied and Sam drowned out the rest of the response as he started to try and come up with an escape plan of some sorts. He was pretty sure that Dean wouldn't let him down, but a back-up plan was always good.
By the time Dean reached the room where Sam was being held captive, he was covered in blood, sweat and all kinds of shit that he wasn't going to spend too much time thinking about. And he was pissed. He was ready to be done with all of this and the thought of getting Sam back and being able to kick back with a nice cold beer was barely keeping him going. So it's a good thing that Bobby was there to kick is ass into touch a little.
"It sounds like they talking," Bobby was saying as Dean stood there staring at the door morosely. "Dean. Focus. What's the plan?"
The plan? What plan? Hadn't they already had this discussion? The only plan Dean had in mind was to kick some fucking ass.
"We got one of these," he said, as he held up the angel sword. "And we have the knife. I reckon we can take them both out at the same time." Bobby didn't look to certain, but Dean could still hear Darcy and Crowley, arguing about whatever the fuck. He knew that it was all Sam; distract the two people who wanted to use him while he formulated a plan.
"How is that going to work?" Bobby spluttered eventually, and Dean flipped the knife in his hand and gave Bobby a cocky smirk.
"The element of surprise, Bobby," he said. "You've got permission to clip me 'round the ear if this doesn't work out." Bobby grunted to himself but he didn't dispute what Dean had said. It was still a risky plan of action, but hell, when you were as tired as Dean was right now? Everything was a risk. And sometimes you needed to take risks to save someone that you loved.
To save your own flesh and blood.
Dean and Bobby came in through some side entrances enshrouded in the shadows, which Sam hadn't spotted before. They stormed through the doors with a rebellious swagger, like they weren't taking on a hot shot demon and an angel. Sam just about managed to hold back from calling out his brother's name because Darcy and Crowley took their time to notice. And by the time they did, two objects were sailing through the air, with clear intended targets.
The demon knife hit Crowley first, and his eyes widening in surprise as he stared down at it. He chuckled, but it sounded more like a gurgle, as a trickle of blood started to drip out of the corner of his mouth. Sam didn't see the angel sword hitting Darcy, but the flash of blinding, white light told him what had happened.
It was over in mere seconds, and both Crowley and Darcy lay there on the cement floor of wherever they were in, with a pool of blood circling them. Sam let out a breath he didn't know he was holding and rushed towards Dean and Bobby with some akin to relief on his face.
"You took your time," he said hoarsely, laughing as Dean socked him in shoulder.
"Are you alright, Sammy?" Dean asked, with that concerned look in his eye that Sam had seen at least a hundred times in his lifetime.
"I'm good," he said, nodding at Bobby as the older man looked at him. "It's just a shame about Darcy." There was quiet as the three of them stared down at the two bodies, and idly, Sam wondered what had happened to the array of demons that had been scattered across the room earlier. As he caught sight of the blood splattered stains on Dean and Bobby, the answer became clear to him.
"Right," Dean said. "She was just an innocent girl, caught up in this crap. She didn't deserve this."
"Nobody deserves this," Bobby said regretfully and Sam and Dean both murmured in agreement.
When Castiel arrived, Bobby's living room was full of uncomfortable, awkward silence as Dean made his displeasure at Cas' presence known.
"No talking," Dean said gruffly. "Just see what you can do." Darcy's body lay on some wooden block that Bobby had pulled out from somewhere, her skin pale with bluish tint that made her look as dead as she very much was. Sam wasn't sure if this was going to work, but they had to at least tried, because after his own failed revenge mission, he'd gotten a second chance. Sure, she was never going to feel completely whole without her sister, but she deserved a chance to live her life in peace with some sort of semblance of normalcy. The kind of life that Sam knew that he'd never life. So, you could say that perhaps he was trying to live through her vicariously, but mostly he just didn't want this girl to have died before her time.
"I'm not sure if this will work," Cas said gravely. "But I will try to maximise the use of my resources." He placed his hands on her chest, with his blue eyes piercing her still form as a bright, warm light appeared beneath his hands. After a few minutes he removed them and the silence took over once more, as they all waited with bated breath. Sam could see a conflicted look in Dean's eyes and he wondered if this brought back memories. He wondered if this was so different from Dean bringing him back all those years ago. Maybe Darcy deserved to just…live out her afterlife wherever she was now. But after Sam's ordeal, that wasn't really a comforting thought anymore.
"Well, thanks for trying," Dean said sarcastically as he began to walk towards the door, his boots scuffing the carpet as he moved.
"Wait," Bobby said and Sam looked down at Darcy. She was beginning to stir, and he couldn't help the gasp that came out.
"Where am I?" she mumbled hoarsely and Sam turned to Cas.
"Does she remember any of this?" he asked, because if she didn't then the further away she was from the three of them, the better.
"I can't be sure," Cas said. "However, I can restore her memory point to before the…angel ordeal and transport her to a safe place."
"Yeah…do that," Sam said hesitantly because it sounded too good to be true. He'd forgotten everything. And it'd been terrifying, but…Darcy hadn't been through what he had. She wasn't some sort of angel vessel or former boy king. She was just human. "But give this just in case." He handed Cas a scrap of paper with a number scribbled on it an email address underneath. Cas was gone within seconds, leaving Sam, Bobby and Dean staring at the now dead body-free wooden block.
"Do you ever think that we'll have the chance one day?" Dean asked. "To just forget and go live normal, safe lives?"
"Nah," Sam said with a shrug. "It's just not the Winchester way."
"I'll say," Bobby agreed with a disgruntled sigh as he headed into the kitchen, leaving Sam with Dean.
"Hey," Sam said softly. "Thank you, for not giving up on me. I know that it was hard and that I definitely didn't make it easy. Just…thanks."
"You'd do the same for me," Dean said with an easy shrug, but Sam saw the response for what it was.
Wow! That's it! I started this a long time ago back when my writing was probably really crappy. Before posting the last chapter, I've gone through all of the chapters (I hope) and edited them. There's probably still a few mistakes so hopefully I will fix those at a later point. It's always really weird coming back to this story because although I've posted other SPN fics after it, it always feels like my last Supernatural fic. In a way it kind of is. I used to enjoy coming up with lots of crazy plots and ideas that I could put Sam and Dean through and a lot of them either didn't make to the web, or didn't make it to the finish line. So I was always determined to finish this one. But doing so was a real struggle because the show is no longer the inspiration that it once was. But I'm content with the ending. I hope that you are too.
Thank you to everyone who read this and reviewed, the encouragement that you gave me was immeasurable. A special thank you to twnchesterangel for all of the help and support. Sam's got your number :)