Last chapter. I am hoping everyone enjoyed this story because I have been working on a follow up, one that includes a hunt and is much more serious. Reviews are welcome and let me know if I should be pursuing this anymore.
Songs in this chapter: 'You and Me' by Neil Young, 'Come Back' by Pearl Jam, and 'Ramble On' by Led Zeppelin.
Lizzy kicks the door to the bedroom shut behind her as she searches through the music on her IPod. Once satisfied with her choice, she pops it into the dock she brought up and pushes play. Neil Young's voice softly fills the air as 'You and Me' begins.
"Last night." It's more of a lament than a statement.
"That it is," Dean concurs as Lizzy hops onto the bed and sits Indian-style facing him. Dean is lying on his side, an elbow propping his head up. Their usually easy banter isn't flowing as freely now that their time together is almost up.
"This is weird. Why is this weird?" Lizzy wonders out loud after a lengthy silence.
"Not sure." He's a liar. Dean knows it's because she's leaving and neither of them knows when, or if, they'll ever see each other again. Uncertainty sucks, and so does knowing that whatever this thing is between them has to end and they have no choice over the matter.
"I feel like there's so much I want to tell you, but I can't find the right words, which is strange because talking isn't normally a struggle for me."
Dean laughs at this. "I know what you mean."
Lizzy shifts closer, lying next to him so that their faces are inches apart. She rests the palm of her hand on his cheek.
"I'm going to miss you. I kinda feel like I already do and I haven't even left yet."
Dean doesn't answer, but instead kisses her lips gently. This was much easier for him than using actual words, as emotional moments were never his thing.
"I just…I wish that…"
"I know," Dean stops her. Her words were going to sting and it's easier to leave everything unsaid, yet still understood. He pulls her closer so that no space remained between them.
"I better hear from you now and then. I'll need to know that you and Sam are ok. And alive."
"That can be done."
"I'm serious. If I don't hear from you, I will track you down and kick your ass."
"Absolutely. Whatever it takes. You're… important to me, to us. You and Sam both are."
"But mostly me, right?"
Lizzy smiles, puts her hand on his neck, pulls him to her, and kisses him. Soon enough Dean is hovering over Lizzy, lips tangled and hands roaming. They take their time, enjoying each other for as long as possible. As Dean hears Eddie Vedder's voice crooning 'Come Back' in the background, he is sure that this is the single most wonderful and heartbreaking moment he's ever been through.
"You sure you have everything you need?" Bobby questions while watching the girls finish up packing the car.
"I think so. I can't imagine we're missing anything," Lou responds. She had the new journal in hand. "We're gonna go through this on the ride. It'll keep us entertained."
"You have my number, right? And Dean's too?" Sam asks the girls.
"Definitely. We'll text you today so you can be sure." Lizzy gives Sam a tight hug. She whispers something in his ear that makes him smile. She then innocently kisses him on the lips, much like a sister would a brother, before heading in Bobby's direction to do the same.
"Dean, it's been a pleasure," Lou says stepping in front of him.
"All mine, Lou." he responds while wrapping his arms around her small frame.
"You really screwed me here, bro," Lou continues. "I'm gonna have to deal with her depressed ass for a while. Thanks for that, by the way." She winks to let him know she's joking… sort of. Lou goes to say her other goodbyes as Dean sees Lizzy start walking in his direction. There's a huge lump forming in his throat. This sucks.
"So, I wrote you this." Lizzy hands over a folded piece of paper. "I wrote it this morning when you weren't up yet. I know you aren't big on verbalizing your feelings and all, but I usually am. So to save you the awkwardness, I put everything down here."
Lizzy pulls him down into a deep kiss before circling her arms around his neck.
"Be safe out there. I'm going to need you in one piece for when we someday meet again."
"I'll do what I can."
"I really wish things could be different."
Lizzy backs away while staring at the ground, unable to look up at first. When she finally does he sees the tears. Shit, this really sucks.
"You guys better head out before you lose too much daylight."
She forces a pained smile and turns to the car. Lou is already in the driver's seat and Lizzy gets into the passenger side. The car starts and through the rolled up windows Dean can hear 'Ramble On' begin played.
"Shit," he mutters under his breath as the car begins making its way down the driveway. Lizzy gives him one last tearful look before she can no longer see him. He feels a hand on his shoulder as the Toyota turns and disappears. He looks and sees Sam, who gives him a sympathetic look.
"Jesus Sammy, enough with the chick flick bullshit." He shrugs the hand off his shoulder and Sam huffs before leaving him and heading back to the kitchen.
Leaning against the Impala, Dean takes the folded note out of his pocket. He unfurls it and begins to read;
I'm not really sure where to begin here since there is so much I have to say, so I guess I should just dive right in. First and foremost, thank you. I have lost so much in my life and, aside from Lou, no one has ever been able to understand what I have seen and been through. It is comforting to know we are not alone in this world and I sincerely hope we were able to comfort you in the same way. You and Sam can consider Lou and me as part of your extended family now. Lean on us. Let us help you. We will always be there if you need us.
Getting to know you these past few days has been wonderful. You are an exceptional person, Dean. With the life you've been given, most people would be spent beyond belief yet you hold up and keep fighting. I respect you more than I could possibly put down in words.
As for how I feel about you, I am conflicted. My lifestyle is not accommodating of actual emotion attachment and that's why this is so difficult. This thing we have is different than anything I have experienced before. I have never been so captivated by a person. You do something to me whenever I am near you, or whenever I even think about you. It's terrifying knowing that tomorrow I will be waking up alone and unsure of where you are and what you are doing. I know this is a scary word, but I think it may be actual, honest-to-God love. Yep, I probably just made you shit your pants, but it had to be put out there. I've never felt love before now, but they say you know it when you feel it. I know it now.
The past few days were the best I have ever had. Learning about you, both emotionally and physically, has been amazing. I am totally myself with you. More than ever before, I wish my fate was not what it is. I would give anything to pursue what we have, but I am realistic. I just hope and pray that someday we get the chance to find each other again. Please be safe. I have lost people before, but I do not think that I can handle losing you too.
You are a wonderful, good-hearted, well-intentioned man, Dean Winchester. Do not let this miserable world change you. I love the person you are.
I love you,
So much to process. Love does scare the shit out of him, as Lizzy so eloquently put it but he recognizes now that he knew the strength of his feelings for her all along. He simply refused to accept it before but he can't ignore it now, he did love her. Dean had always done everything he could to avoid this, especially after Cassie ripped his heart out years ago. That wound never really healed. Love was messy and awful and always ended in heartache, or at least that's what Cassie taught him. This time around love didn't come with rejection. Lizzy hadn't run away. She would have stayed if she could and that changed his perspective a bit.
Dean is also shocked to learn just how Lizzy viewed him. She saw only the good. Granted, she has only experienced his good moments and has been lucky enough to never witness his lower points, like one of his booze-fuel depressions when things get too heavy. Lizzy saw his good nature.
His sadness grows deeper as he mulls over her letter. Life is insanely difficult and unfair, especially if you've inherited the Winchester name. Dean wipes his palm down his face and decides to do something he hasn't in years. He lowers his head, closes his eyes, and starts talking.
"Ok," he says out loud, "I have no idea who is steering this ship, or if there really is anyone actually in charge, but if someone is manning the wheel I have to try this. I'm not a religious man, or even a believer but I need some help here. This chick is special. Watch after her and keep her safe. Let her find happiness. And, if you can make this happen, let me find her again. Give us a chance."
Sam's voice punctuates the ending of his prayer. Fucking Sam. How long had he been there?
Dean lifts his head and watches Sam walk towards him. He folds the paper back up, takes out his wallet, and shoves it in before his brother reaches him. Sam's arm is outstretched with a beer that Dean takes from him before Sam leans against the Impala next to him. If he heard him talking, Sam was being decent enough to not mention it.
"You ok, man?"
"I'll survive." Dean takes a huge swig from the bottle in his hand.
"Sucks, I know. We'll see them again."
"Thanks Sam." He does appreciate that his brother is doing what he can to help, even if he's terrible at it. They both drink in silence for a few minutes as Sam quietly supports his hurting older brother.
"Well, if you want a distraction Bobby thinks he's picked up on something. We can go check it out if you want."
"What is it?"
"Ghost. They're filming a horror flick in LA and people on the set claim something is haunting the soundstage. A guy died during filming yesterday. Could be interesting."
"Huh," Dean thinks out loud. "I do love me a good scary movie. Alright, Sammy, lets head west."
"Good. I'll go let Bobby know the plan." Sam heads back into the house and Dean hears his phone. Taking it out of his pocket, he flips it open and checks the text.
You need a change of pants yet?
He laughs. She's worried about freaking him out. He begins typing;
Nah, I'm good. Thanks for the letter. Have a safe trip.
He pushes send. It isn't the message she probably wants from him, so to the point and devoid of emotion. Dean needs some time to process everything. Maybe he can call her and check in after they are done in LA.
Dean stands up on his feet and heads into the house. He has some packing to do if he and Sam were going to get on the road before nightfall.