Cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war …
A pre-series story: Dean is 20 and Sam is 16
I have noticed that a lot of people are asking for teen!chester stories particularly with H/C so here is one that has been on my mind for quite a while. It will be AU for two reasons: One, it is pre-series so there is no canon to actually follow except for the few titbits thrown our way from the writers and creators. Two, this story is set in a world of my creation where the boys are more soldiers than sons but for a very good reason.
Author's Note: The title is a quote from William Shakespeare's Julius Caesar
Author's Note 2: I will return to my other stories very soon, this one has been interrupting my attempts at writing updates so I figured I had better get it out and written.
Warning: This story does contain violence and subjects of sensitive natures so if you find yourself offended by this please go read some of my more gentle/general stories.
"And Caesar's spirit, raging for revenge,
With Ate by his side come hot from hell,
Shall in these confines with a monarch's voice
Cry "Havoc!" and let slip the dogs of war,
That this foul deed shall smell above the earth
With carrion men, groaning for burial."
Marcus Antonius (Mark Antony):
Julius Caesar Act 3, Scene 1
09/09/1999: The day the world ended.
John Winchester stood and stretched his aching neck and back before snatching up his glass of pure malt scotch, his last indulgence, and striding over to the window. In the distance he could see the two lone figures training on the hillside; still training side-by-side and in perfect unison way past the time when the others had finished.
A tired smile played on his lips as he sipped the scorching liquid, his two soldiers, only he and he alone could lay claim to familial ownership of them. Neither had reached legal age but both of them were highly trained and capable of taking a life if needed.
He scrubbed at his beard with his left hand; weariness had descended over him like a funeral pall and had shown no sign of lifting these past few years. Almost sixteen years ago he had taken his tiny sons from a burning building and thought he was fighting a silent, invisible battle against monsters that should have remained in nightmares and children's fairy tales. Now, now he was the commander of two elite teams of military trained hunters fighting for the very existence of humanity. The Hunter Elite were highly valued and revered by the general population who had survived – the Apocalypse.
Five years ago the civilian population were still ignorant of the battle waging between Gods, Demons, Angels and Man until it all came to a head on the ninth of the ninth, nineteen-ninety-nine.
Before that the biggest worry was the turn of the century, the millennium bug, nothing now but a satirical memory in the annals of time. The ninth hour struck and darkness descended; horrified people watched as a total eclipse of the sun came suddenly without warning, this time the shadow was blood red. The eclipse heralded the beginning of the Apocalypse, monsters and the supernatural openly walked the earth, taking lives and souls with impunity. A demonic disease known as the Croatoan Virus decimated the innocent, infant and adult alike. Seemingly overnight the world took on a war-ravaged appearance, neighbours turned on each other and on the governments.
From the depths of the despair came the Hunter Elite, and overnight the once bedraggled band of hunters, who all skirted on the edges of depravity and lawlessness were they only bastion of hope left.
Swallowing his scotch John turned to the maps and wearily tried to concentrate on them; a week ago demons waged a violent attack on the last inhabitants of Chicago in the ensuing battle they had also lost six hunters. Now, now he was contemplating on sending in new troops led by his own sons. His eldest Dean, a born warrior and tactician at the tender age of twenty was a veteran of six campaigns all successful without the loss of any hunters under his command and now on the eve of his twenty-first birthday he might be facing the biggest fight of his young life.
Then there's Sam, John's sixteen year old son and his biggest antagonist and source of worry. Like his brother Dean, he was trained from a young age to fight supernatural entities, but unlike his brother his not a born warrior. Sam is scary smart, he should be prepping for university and a career in law or medicine instead he is one of the best researchers John had ever seen often rivalling Bobby Singer as the best researcher known. Naturally rebellious and filled with a deep-seated rage Sam had a knack of knowing exactly what to say or do to set his father's temper going which often led to very loud and often violent encounters between them. The only one who could diffuse their stormy relationship was Dean, though John often harboured secret thoughts and jealousy of the relationship between his sons and the fact that Dean did place himself on Sam's side more than his father's.
John shook his head and poured another drink; dwelling on his own issues and problems with his boys was not going to help with the vanquishing of demons in Chicago. The Intel was good, impeccable in fact from fellow hunter and one of his few friends Caleb. He could hear Sam's rants already about sending Dean into battle and not allowing him to celebrate his twenty-first birthday, how he puts the war ahead of the welfare of his only children and how Dean deserves to have a life outside the fight. How Sam should be allowed to go to school, even the military schools would be better than this life.
Pulling out his cell phone John pressed the key for Dean's speed dial and downed his whiskey while he waited for his son to answer.
'Hey Dad.' Dean's voice came through the tiny-sounding speaker.
'Get your butts down here to the map room now Dean.' John said without preamble, he had to keep his game face on. He was sending his sons into a life-threatening battle yet again.
'We should shower first Dad.'
'No time Dean, I want you and Sam in here five minutes ago.' John barked before disconnecting the call. A slow mocking clap from behind him, made John grind his teeth and to reach for the almost empty bottle of scotch whiskey, 'what do you want Singer?'
'I take it you've got another mission for your soldiers?'
'You mean my sons?'
'Oh so you do know the meaning of the word sons?' Bobby Singer stepped away from the doorway and headed towards the centre of the room, snagging the whiskey bottle from John's hand as he passed him, 'so where are you sending them now?'
'Fuck John there are … others who can do that job you don't have to send your kids into it.'
'Just because they're my sons doesn't mean I can give them the easy battles all …'
'How about none of the time … what do you consider an easy battle? I'd like to see one.'
'Very funny Singer,' John said as he returned his attention to the window, watching as Dean and Sam sprinted towards him. Even after training for hours in the bitter cold and damp they were still in high spirits and full of energy.
'Give them some time off John for fuck's sake it's Dean's twenty-first in three days.'
'I know when my son was born Singer …'
The thunder of footsteps outside the door, called a temporary cease fire to their discussion, John turned his back on his old friend and pulled another map out of a drawer.
'Dad? Oh hey Bobby.' Dean grinned as he came to a skidding stop, 'beat you again Sammy.'
'I let ya win short-stuff.' Sam panted out right behind Dean, 'Dad, hey Uncle Bobby.' Sam smiled shyly at the man who was more of a father figure to him than his own dad.
'Hey Sam, so how are ya managing to keep yer hair so long?' Bobby grinned up at the youth, 'damned me if yer aint growing more with every passing minute.'
'Gotta outdo Dean with something,' Sam smiled showing off his deep double dimples before turning his attention to his father, the smile fading to slight grin, 'what's wrong dad?'
'Dean I need you to get your men together … you're moving out at oh-six-hundred tomorrow.' John said all but ignoring Sam, 'I received new intel from Caleb and it's not good news.'
'Dad?' Sam tried again, 'you're talking about Chicago aren't you?'
'Sam show your commanding officers some respect.' John barked out before turning back to the maps, 'just stop and listen instead of shooting your mouth off.'
'I'm right aren't I? You're sending us into the site of the latest massacre what for this time?'
'Sammy stop it,' Dean said as he turned to the maps in front of them, 'which way can we go safely?'
'Send the men on in the truck with Rufus down highway twenty and I want the two of you to take the impala an hour after them.'
'Okay now you've got me worried dad, what's going on?' Dean asked, lately John always insisted on Dean and Sam travelling in the truck with the rest of the troop.
'I need the two of you to do a job for me on the way … Rufus can get things going with Caleb until you get there.'
'Dad you're not making any sense.' Dean glanced at his scowling brother and then at his adopted uncle before looking back to his father, 'what else?'
'Bobby can you and Sam go over Caleb's information on the Croatoan victims for me?'
'What's going on dad?' Sam demanded his green eyes darkening with anger he moved with seemingly blinding speed and was up close in his father's way.
'Stand down soldier … that's an order.' John snapped.
'Dad … Sam … quit it.' Dean placed himself between his brother and father, 'step away both of you.'
Before the argument could escalate into a physical altercation Bobby took Sam into the next office, worry for the teenager etched across his craggy features, 'you okay Sam?' He asked as Sam lost all colour in his face and appeared to sway dizzily.
'Uncle Bobby?' Sam blinked and tried to focus on the older man's face but he was fighting a losing battle as his field of vision narrowed and a loud buzzing sound filled his ears.
'Dammit Dad,' Dean sighed as he sank down on a chair and took the proffered drink, 'was that necessary?'
'I need to talk to you about Chicago without your brother.' John said pulling his chair up in front of Dean, 'I didn't give Bobby and Sam all of Caleb's information.'
'What's going on Dad?'
'The yellow-eyed bastard has been sighted in Chicago, at the site of the massacre.' John blurted out.
'YED? He's in Chicago?' Dean blinked in surprise; he wasn't expecting that, 'why aren't you coming with us?'
'I'm needed here Dean …ahh I ahh have to stay and – and work on the New York front.'
'What aren't you telling me Dad?' Dean asked as his gaze narrowed and he stared at his father with a steely glint in his dark green eyes, 'what's going on?'
'Nothing you should be questioning me about, just get organised to leave at six.'
'Talk to me dad … what's going on and why won't you discuss it in front of Sam?'
'John! Dean! Git yer butts in here.' Bobby yelled as loudly as he could not wanting to leave Sam's side.
Just a few moments ago they were talking and then Sam's eyes rolled back slightly and he collapsed bonelessly towards the floor. Suddenly his muscles started to twitch uncontrollably and his eyes rolled and moved rapidly under his eyelids.
'Bobby what is it?' Dean asked as he came to a sliding stop next to his fallen brother, 'what happened?'
'Dunno, Sam was talking one minute and then … this.' Bobby tried to explain, 'it's almost as if he's having a nightmare without being asleep.'
'Sam?' Dean cradled his brother's head on his lap and tenderly brushed sweat dampened strands of hair from his face.
'What the hell?' John spat out as he stood in the doorway and stared at his sons and friend, 'what happened to Sam?'
'Dunno yet John.' Bobby snapped back angry at his friend's apparent lack of empathy for his youngest son's suffering.
'Nnngghhh Dean?' Sam called out as he tried to sort out what was real and what was in the vision. 'Dean?'
'Sammy hey Sammy …' Dean said as he patted Sam's cheek, 'you with us?'
'Dean?' Sam opened his eyes slowly and winced at the brightness that assaulted his sensitive pupils. 'Wha' 'appened?'
'You tell us … you fainted like a girl.'
'I didn't faint.'
'Ahh yeah ya did Princess.' Dean smirked as he tenderly wrapped his arms around Sam's chest and waist and helped him to his feet. 'So what happened? What did ya see this time?'
'I'm not sure but …'
'Wait just a minute what do you mean this time?' John demanded glaring down at his two sons.
Sam bit his lip and pushed against his brother's chest, he was still shaky and dizzy from collapsing and didn't want to have another confrontation with his father, he twisted his fingers in the back of Dean's jacket and felt himself turn into a scared six year old again.
'I'll explain after Dad, just let me get Sam fixed first okay?' Dean stared at his father, locking gazes with him, 'I'll explain I promise.'
'Dean?' Sam whispered, 'sick.' Sam lifted his head enough to look up at his brother, his face was another shade paler than white, a smudge of drying blood from his nose stood out with garish intensity, his eyes red-rimmed and bloodshot, 'gonna puke.'
'here,' Dean grabbed a trashcan and shoved it under Sam's chin while he guided him to the small ante-room adjacent to the main office. A narrow cot lined one wall, he moved his brother towards it, effectively ignoring the worried look on Bobby's face and growing thunder storm on his father's face as he settled Sam onto the cot.
'Dean … I saw … nnggghhh.' Sam tried to speak but instead hunched over the trashcan as he felt the burning bile erupt from his stomach.
'Dean front and centre now.' John ordered angrily, 'explain soldier.'
'Fine Dad … Sir you want an explanation Sir?' Dean spat back, 'Sam's been having visions.'
'Sam has been having visions since September last year, normally featuring YED or something attached to him.' Dean regretted his tone and the way he broke the news to their father but his over-protectiveness of Sam fired up and he couldn't stop himself.
'Visions?' John blinked at his eldest in shock before turning his gaze to his stricken youngest who now lay on the cot, sweat drenched hair clumped around his pale face and with blood dribbling from his nose. 'Sammy?'