Title: The False Shame of Fools
Author: Disasteriffic Kaz
Info: Takes place shortly after s7ep7: The Mentalists. Stand alone Hunt with the boys just being the boys.
Author's Note: Here we go. Final chapter! Next time I'm picking something with more lore behind it. Estonian Shame Poles caught my interest but there's not a lot on them. Hope I gave you some entertainment just the same. Enjoy! :D
Please! Read and Review! Let me know how I'm doing. Thank you to those who already have! Your support means the world!
Sam opened the Motel room door, careful not to disturb the salt lines. A quick, hard rain had washed away most of the blood outside their door.
"Dean?" He held up a bag toward where his brother still sat at the table.
"Tell me that's food." Dean sniffed the mouthwatering scent of beef. "Gimmee." He said hungrily. Sam chuckled and handed the bag to him. Dean pulled out a burger and bit greedily into it. "Mmf." He watched Sam checking the salt lines, recognizing that particular tired, satisfied hitch in his step and grinned around his burger."You got laid."
Sam dropped his head, exasperated and blushed. "Dude, eat your burger."
Dean did, still grinning and tapped the laptop. He turned it toward Sam.
"You find something?"
"Oh yeah." Dean managed to around the mouthful of burger. "Found our boy."
Sam sat and pulled the laptop closer. Dean didn't like research but when he was driven, he was good. He had found a scan of an old paper from the time the Shame Pole had been buried. It was hard to read, the English old. Their spirit had been accused of raping a girl. He denied it, all the way to the pole and spent each day in chains blaming the Old Town Councilmen. The same Councilmen who had accused and sentenced him. The girl died, suicide so they said, before she could be questioned. Alonzo, their dead guy, swore when he was freed from the Pole he'd prove it and have revenge. Of course, he never got the chance. The fifth night someone opened up his veins and killed him first.
"Seriously." Sam sat back. "No wonder this guy's pissed."
"They hosed him." Dean nodded and grabbed another burger. "Probably killed the girl too to shut her up."
"Then when they realized he was coming after them from the grave they dropped the whole thing in a salt lined pit and imprisoned him." Sam stared at the screen unseeing for a moment, memories of the cage washing through him, of hundreds of years trapped and tormented.
"Sammy." Dean kicked his foot under the table when he saw his brothers' vacant stare. "Earth to Sam." Panic gripped him. He was half out of his chair when Sam blinked finally and shook himself.
"Yeah. I'm here Dean." He said softly. Dean let out a long sigh and sat back. He cradled his aching arm, appetite forgotten and pushed the remains of his burger away.
"You get any info from the Sheriff before you cleaned her pipes?" Dean's question did what he hoped it would. Sam smiled, groaned, blushed and came all the way back from his private hell.
"Uh yeah. So, she said the house is gone. Flood damage, but the old greenhouse is still there." Sam went to the mini fridge and pulled out two beers, passing one to Dean. "Seems her Grams liked to collect statues from around the world and stored them in the cellar under the greenhouse."
The police scanner on the bedside table crackled to life. A frantic officers' voice called for help and the blood drained from Sam's face as he recognized the address. The beer slipped from his fingers to roll across the floor. He felt Dean's hand on his arm and he stared into his brothers' eyes.
"Oh god." Sam breathed. "It's the Sheriff. It's Gemma. He took Gemma."
"Okay, Sammy." Dean squeezed his arm hard, getting his attention. "We know where he took her. Get your game face on and let's go get her."
Sam nodded, sucking down the fear. "Your arm." He said finally.
"I'm good." Dean grabbed up his coat, pulling it on his bad arm first. "We don't have a lot of time here. You drive."
"Damn that is creepy." Dean took the shotgun Sam handed him and studied the greenhouse by the light of the moon. All of the glass had long ago shattered but the frame still stood. Ivy crawled and covered the whole of the structure. White beams from the roof peeked out like the ribs of some giant, dead creature. It was lonely and foreboding tucked in against the treeline and he almost felt as though it was waiting for them.
"Let's go." Sam hefted the duffel to his shoulder and clicked on his flashlight. "Gemma said the statues are in the cellar."
"Bet that's what kicked our boy free." Dean commented, studying the wet ground as they squelched closer. "You said it flooded right? The water must have soaked the salt out of the wood and let Captain Hook loose."
Sam eased under the hanging ivy, parting it and playing his light over the interior. Mostly empty tables, some with long dead plants stood in rows, dappled by filtered moonlight. The old wooden floor creaked and cracked as they entered.
"You take that side." Dean nodded at Sam. "Let's find that stairway."
They kept each other in sight, as they passed down the rows of tables, eyes open for a floor hatch or door along the walls. Dean shook out his left arm, trying to relieve the ache and froze as the floor cracked ominously beneath his feet. "Sammy?" He whispered and then shouted as the rotted wood gave way and he fell.
"Dean!" Sam saw him begin to fall. He dove under the table separating them, reaching out and caught Dean's wrist. He grunted when his brothers weight snapped his arm down into the hole and started dragging him. Sam dropped his shotgun and wrapped his arm around a support beam. He gasped in relief when it stopped his momentum. "Dean? Dean!" He called.
"I'm okay." Dean's voice came up to him, breathless. "Found the cellar."
Sam would have laughed if his shoulder wasn't in danger of popping out of joint. "Can you swing back up?"
"Let go." Dean called. "It's only a few more feet to the bottom."
"You sure?" Sam strained to keep his grip.
"Do it! Before you arm falls off." Dean ordered. Sam growled and released his brother. A moment later there was a splash and a groan. "Dammit that's cold."
Sam crawled to the edge and looked over. Dean was fishing his flashlight out of the foot or so of icy water. "Don't suppose my sawed off is up there?" He called up.
"Nope." Sam crawled back under the table and picked up the bag he'd dropped and his gun and went back to the hole. "Head's up." He dangled the bag over the side and dropped it into Dean's waiting arms, then his shotgun. "Move over." Sam told him and rolled over the side, hanging by his hands. He let go and splashed down beside Dean. "Holy crap. That's frigid."
"No kidding." Dean grimaced. He gave the bag and gun back to Sam and started sweeping his leg through the water. "Yahtzee!" He said and bent, coming up with his favorite shotgun. "Hope it'll still fire."
Sam shined his light around them and whistled softly. They were in a forest of stone, wood and marble statuary. Pillars, even a grinning gargoyle and numerous fountains small and large sat in the water around them. A soft moan cut over the gentle lapping of water.
"Gemma!" Sam called and splashed around the nearest statues, Dean at his side.
"Ah god." Dean groaned. "You smell that? That is not fruit."
Sam nodded, trying not to gag at the powerful stench of decomposing flesh. They rounded a massive fountain and Sam gasped, bringing the back of his hand to his mouth to stop the bile rising. "Dean." He said hoarsely. Dean gagged in spite of himself. Bloated bodies in various stages of decomp bobbed on the surface of the water. The smell was something out of a charnel house.
"Man this ghost is one sick twist." Dean managed around his hand.
"Gemma." Sam breathed. He'd panned his light up. Beyond the bodies stood a ten foot wide, stone circle. At it's center was a tall, thick pole of dark wood, gently gleaming red in the light. Tied to it, head dropped to her chest, stood the Sheriff. She still wore her robe but it was plastered to her body with her blood. Sam propped his flashlight up on the fountain so it shone on the Pole and cautiously went to the dais.
"Got yer back, Sammy." Dean said softly, waiting for one pissed off spirit to make his appearance.
Sam set the duffel on the edge of the dais, trying to ignore the bodies bumping his legs in the water and levered himself up onto the stone. He took Gemma's head gently and lifted it so he could see her face. He put shaking fingers to her throat. Sam sighed in relief and dropped his forehead to hers for a second. "Thank god." He whispered. Her pulse was weak and thready but still there. "Dean, she's still alive."
"Get her down quick." As bad as the smell was, he was almost sure the scent of rotting fruit was beginning to strengthen. "Hurry, Sam."
Sam pulled the knife from his belt and quickly severed the rope holding Gemma to the pole. He swept her up in his arms and saw the stairs on the other side of the dais, the first landing above the water.
"Sam! He's coming!" Dean warned.
"I'm just gonna put her on the stairs and then torch it." Sam lowered himself to the edge carefully, dropping his feet into the water and waded to the stairs. Her laid Gemma out carefully on the landing. Using his knife, he cut four strips of cloth from her blood sodden robe and tied loose tourniquets around her biceps and thighs to slow the blood flow.
The voice, filled with rage, came from beside him. Sam looked up into the burning eyes of Alonzo. "Oh crap." He was suddenly airborne, Dean's voice calling out. He slammed into the Shame Pole with his stomach, wrapping around and falling with a grunt to the stone below in a pool of Gemma's blood.
"Sammy!" Dean saw him roll away from the post, mouth wide trying to gasp in a breath. The ghosts bleeding form appeared on the dais and Dean fired…nothing happened. "Son of a bitch." His waterlogged shotgun wouldn't fire, clicking uselessly as he pulled the trigger.
The blast of a double barrel echoed. Alonzo vanished on a scream and Dean saw Sam, still panting for air but gun held steady.
"Nice shot, little brother!"
The ghost appeared again, feet away from Dean. He felt the shove in his chest, lifting him off his feet. The seconds flying through the air made his stomach roll and then it was over. He splashed into the water and came up coughing the foul tasting stuff. "Damn I hope there's a shot for whatever I just caught."
Sam heaved a breath past his aching chest and stumbled over to his duffel. He opened it and pulled out the can of oil. He glanced up and saw Dean struggling to his feet and turned back to the pole. He fought to his feet, panting, popped the lid off the can and upended it. Kerosene coated the wood of the pole. The sharp sound of Dean's pistol made him turn to check on his brother.
"Hurry up, Sammy!"
Sam dug a book of matches out of his pocket and yelped as one of the ropes snaked across the stone and wrapped around his ankle. It gave a mighty yank, pulling him from his feet. Sam's bruised ribs screamed as he slammed into the dais. He saw stars when his head slapped down and couldn't do more than stare at the ceiling and fight to breathe through it.
"Sam!" Dean shouted. He fired into the ghosts face again, dissipating him and ran past, his eyes on Sam. "Sammy!" He pulled his zippo from his sodden pocket and flicked it open. "Come on baby. Light." He spun the wheel, and again, and a third time as Alonzo reappeared. Flame shot up and Dean smiled dangerously at the dead man. "Time to fry." Dean flipped the lighter through the air, watching as it hid the stone dais and skidded up against the pole. A second later flames shot up the length of the wood.
"Nooooo!" Alonzo screamed. He was engulfed in flames and exploded in a kaleidoscope of light, gone for good.
"Sam." Dean sprinted to the stone and threw himself up, tearing off his jacket. Sam's pantleg was on fire and tied to the pole still. He beat the flames, feeling the warmth from the pole itself beating at him, and pulled Sam clear. "Sammy?" Dean felt around Sam's pockets and pulled out his cell. He quickly dialed 911 and told them he'd found the Sheriff and where. He snapped it closed and sat Sam carefully up against his chest. "Come on, little brother."
Sam groaned, sagging his head forward and hugging his ribs. "You smell." He managed after a moment. Dean laughed, relieved and rested his forehead against the back of Sam's head for a second.
"I think we're risking the hospital this time, Sammy." Dean said and Sam only nodded. "Hey, you ok?"
"Breathing…hurts." Sam tipped his head back to Dean's shoulder. "Might…just be…the smell."
"Help's coming." Dean said, trying to reassure himself as much as Sam. "Hey, you saved the damsel in distress." Sam nodded weakly, panting shortly for breath. "Hang on, buddy." Dean rested a hand on Sam's forehead as sirens sounded in the distance.
"No. I am NOT leaving my brother. You can let me in or you can get the HELL out of my way!" Dean shouted into the stunned face of the Doctor blocking him entry to Sam's room. They'd given him the usual spiel about waiting outside, blah blah. There was no way he was leaving Sam alone, even for a minute, in a hospital unless he knew it was Leviathan free and he didn't.
"Fine." The Doctor said, irritated. "But stay out of our way or I will have security forcibly remove you."
"They can try." Dean growled and pushed through the doors. He managed a full breath at last with Sam where he could see him. Three cracked ribs the doctors said and they were wrapping his chest now. His ankle was wrapped in a brace, badly sprained from the rope. A nurse was cleaning the back of his head where some of the stitches Dean had put in had popped out when his head hit the stone. Sam's minor, mostly healed concussion had been renewed. His little brother was flying high on hospital grade pain killers. Eyes closed and mostly unconscious, Dean could hear him muttering his name from time to time as they worked on him.
"Dean!" Sam startled awake as they tightened the bandage around his chest. Dean jumped forward and intercepted a fist on its way to the Nurse's face.
"Hey. Hey Sammy I'm right here." Dean cupped the side of Sam's face to try and calm him. "I'm here buddy. Calm down. We're in the hospital."
"Dean." Sam sagged into Dean's voice, against his chest. "Don' let 'em eat me." He slurred.
"I wont. I've got you, Sammy."
"Sir, you'll need to stand back." The Doctor stepped to his side and Dean slowly shook his head.
"Not gonna happen. If you want him calm then I'm staying right here." Dean propped Sam so the nurses could finish wrapping his ribs. "Look, he's phobic about hospitals. You patch him up, I'll take him home. Everyone will be happy."
"We need to keep him overnight at least. He needs to be watched…"
"And I'll watch him." Dean fought for calm and patience. "Being in a hospital will just make it harder on him." On us. He thought.
The Doctor scowled and glanced at his patient, now quiet and calm in his brothers arms. He sighed. "Alright. I don't like it but I understand. I'll get the release papers for you."
Dean sighed, relieved. He'd have had to bust Sam out if the Doctor hadn't given in.
"You can lay him down now." The nurse said. She helped Dean settle Sam on the bed and smiled, smoothing sweat soaked hair from his forehead. "He's really not so bad off you know." She smiled up at Dean. "It's mostly the drugs making him so loopy and weak."
"Thanks." Dean smiled and meant it.
"I'll go round up a wheel chair for you." She patted the back of Dean's hand in a very motherly fashion and left.
"Almost out of here buddy." Dean said and gave Sam's shoulder a gentle shake. "Wake up just enough to get into the car and you can sleep for a week."
The nurse returned with the promised wheel chair and the Doctor just behind her, release papers in his hand.
"Time to get the hell out of Dodge, Sam."
"She's really okay?" Sam asked from his position hunched over the toilet in their motel room.
"I swear dude. I checked on the Sheriff before we left." Dean draped a cold cloth over the back of Sam's neck. The new concussion was playing merry hell with his stomach. "They said she'd make a full recovery. The cavalry is still out searching the woods for their missing serial killer." Dean snorted. "More power to 'em."
Sam leaned back finally and took the water Dean handed to him. He rinsed the foul taste from his mouth. "Ok. Think it's done for now." He closed his eyes and waited for the room to stop spinning.
"Up we go." Dean took Sam under the shoulders, careful of his mummy wrapped ribs. He lifted him up and groaned. "Dude how can you be this heavy when you eat salad?"
Sam chuckled and leaned heavily on him. "It's cause you're short."
"You know I can drop you right here, princess." Dean threatened as he walked them to Sam's bed.
"Don't make me laugh, Dean." Sam said, breathless and smiling. "It hurts." He sat stiffly on the edge of the bed.
"Serves you right." Yet Dean slipped an arm behind his shoulders and lowered him gently to the bed, grimacing as Sam hissed in pain. "How's your head now?"
"Kettle drums instead of sledge hammers so…better." Sam smirked, eyes closed. Dean shook two pills out of the bottle by the bed and put them in Sam's hand.
"Man these things knock me out hard." Sam groaned but took them.
"I think that's the idea." Dean smiled. "We'll hit the road in the morning. Head to Bobby's." Sam mumbled something, the pain killers already taking him under. Dean pulled the blankets up, covered him and grinned. "Saved your ass again, Little brother." He said softly and rolled onto his own bed to watch tv.
"Saved yours…first." Came the soft, slurred reply from Sam's bed. Dean stared and then burst out laughing. Beat up, bloody, bruised and concussed between the two of them and it didn't matter. They were alive. They were together and so they were home.
Dean grinned and turned out the bedside light. "Sleep tight, Sammy."