Pairing, Character(s): Ben Braeden/Claire Novak, Jesse Turner, Dean & Castiel

Themes: hurt/comfort

Words: ~2200

Disclaimer: I do not own SPN

Prompt: Written for hc_bingo, the prompt "Undeserved Reputation"

Notes: I've written Jesse a lot softer than most do. After watching the episode a few times it seemed that Jesse's power was linked closely with his emotions, and to find some sort of middle ground he would have to learn to control them, along with the power itself. That said I have a few other stories featuring Ben, Claire and Jesse in the works. Awfully rushed ending too, but I just couldn't figure out where to go from there and I have other plots I want to work on. This is really just to introduce Jesse to this little AU I've created.

Continuation of the Ben/Claire adventures.

"What are you doing?" For twenty minutes Ben had watched Claire pound the keys of their already beaten laptop. "Y'know we can't afford a new computer."

"Shut it." She pushed the 'enter' key with a hard jab. "I'm arguing."

Ben rolled his eyes, "obviously." The CAPS lock hadn't given that away.

"Some shithead is saying he's the Antichrist. Like, no joke, Antichrist." There was another round of clacking keys, and Claire muttering obscenities. Deciding it was easier to sit back and watch the show, Ben maneuvered his way behind Claire and wrapped his arms around her. Even though the tight line across her shoulders didn't ease she did lean back against his chest. "Does this kid even know what he's doing. The wrong thing reads this blog and BAM..." Claire's "bam" corresponded with her sending another blast message. "No more stupid kid."

"You know I love you, babe, but ya need to calm down. Just some punk." Ben ran a hand through her hair, twisting the ends between his fingers. Claire huffed, irritation still clearly on her mind. "Dad talked about meeting a boy once, said he was the Antichrist. Demon-possessed mother, or something."

"Yeah, yeah. He turned Angel-bitch into a doll and Pop got hairy hands. I don't think the kid would be stupid enough to plaster his existence all over the internet–" The computer chirped and Claire cut herself off to type.

Ben kissed her neck, releasing his own annoyed sigh. "Are you really still mad at Cas for saving you from that Were in Illinois?"

"I fucking had that thing." He didn't need to see her face to know she was grinning as she cracked the enter key. "There. Show him."

"What did you do?"

"Told him if he really was some all powerful Antichrist that he should prove it." Claire looked over shoulder at him, smug smile on her face.

Ben could no more than shake his head at her before they weren't alone in their motel room any longer. Instead there was a guy, not much younger than them. His brown hair was unruly and uneven; sun burnt skin and hazel eyes. And those eyes were wide, amazed. "I did it. Wow, I really freakin' did it."

They were never going to admit how delayed their response was to an unknown magicking its way into their hotel room. Never. But Ben raised his gun a hair-second before Claire; her's shook. "Hey– hey, there isn't any need for that." The weapons fell apart, each component lying in a pile on their laps.

There was no doubt that Ben and Claire were very different people, but really. "Holy crap!" "What did you do to my fucking gun?" Claire jumped up, the computer clattering to the floor.

"It's okay, I can put them back together." The teen held up his hands, like they were skittish animals. And maybe Claire put off that vibe more than necessary. "I just–"

"What in the Hell are you?" She was reaching behind her back to release the knife she kept there. Again, seriously, they'd talked about having weapons in the bed on their person.

"Oh, yeah. Sorry, I don't talk to people often. Animals don't really care if you introduce yourself or not–" He shook himself, plastering a smile on his face. "Hi, I'm Jesse Turner, and you told me to prove it. So I did. Man, I can't believe I found you!"

Claire's hand dropped with her jaw. "You – I – what?"

"I'm going to kill you Claire Novak." Ben might even mean it this time.

"You're the one who said it was just some punk–"

"And you just had to provoke the Antichrist–"

"You can–" Ben would have tried to cut her off again, but before he could both of them were silenced.

"Hey, hey. I said it's okay." Jesse had his hands up again and Ben was getting that really bad feeling when they were way, way over their heads. "Don't fight each other. I'm not going to hurt you. I just, I had this feeling, you know?" They couldn't answer, and Jesse seemed to remember this fact. "Oh sorry, here," with a flick of his wrist the odd feeling of not being able to talk went away. As if they had anything (coherent) to say, not to the Antichrist, at least.

Ben couldn't help but notice though. That even with the immense power rolling off of Jesse, even knowing he was the Antichrist; there was this innocence about him. Obviously the teen, maybe a year or so younger than Ben and Claire, hadn't been around people very often. And for someone that had forced exile on themselves he had a cheery deposition. He smiled, remained calm... "You wouldn't like me when I'm angry." Jesse took a step back.

"Oh, God. We've got the Hulk on our hands." Claire sat down, her dead weight sending pieces of their guns scattering across the floor.

Jesse laughed, but it was forced. "I promise to not grow three feet and turn green." He shifted on his feet and they recognized Jesse's own nervousness standing in front of them. And with that they noticed that the walls were creaking and Jesse was doing an impressive job of not clenching his fists.

"Um, you can take a-a seat if you'd like." Ben gestured weakly at the small table and chairs, the only other furniture in the room. And with his own legs so wobbly he crossed the room and took the other chair.

"You said you had a feeling earlier. What did you mean?" Claire was starting to regain her "sea legs" as it were. The dazed look of shock was fading from her eyes and the investigator in her was taking notes.

Jesse twisted his fingers in his lap and Ben really wished this duel image of what he considered to be the most powerful evil-thing in the universe verse the kid – his own age sitting in front of him would even out. There was a split second slide of Jesse's eyes and Ben remembered that Jesse had plucked the thoughts right from his head once already.

"You're thinking loudly," Jesse winced. "I'm not normally so – but you are the kids of, well, you know. And it's making me nervous. I don't – " he flexed his fingers and they both tried to ignore the something that happen. The constant creak that had settled into white noise shifted to a shudder that had the room vibrating. "I should have thought this through more." He stood up, his chair sliding from more than his abruptness. "Damn growth spurt," muttering to himself he moved toward the center of the room. "Too strong again." He was gone and with him the shuddering stopped.

"Holy shit," was the mutual statement.

Ben learned it and taught it to Claire early in their hunting together. Always go to Uncle Bobby first. It was a proven fact that even if he called you an "idjit" and grumbled and groaned and told you exactly what his old bones thought about getting off his ass to look through his books. Uncle Bobby handled every situation with 100 percent more finesse than Dean.

"The Antichrist. You provoked the Antichrist into paying a personal visit. Dang it girl, I've told you're–"They had Bobby on speaker to lessen the back and forth. Which really only provided the grouch with yelling at both of them in one go.

"Can we save the lecture. Ben's already given me enough lip. And Jesse's the idiot who needs his head examined. What the hell does he think is going to happen if a demon reads that blog?"

"He's lonely." Claire rolled his eyes. "He is. I read some of the blog this morning," When Ben was too wired to sleep and Claire had disappeared on a run. They each had their own way of dealing sometimes. "He's isolated himself and it's starting to take a toil on him."

There was the faint clacking of keys and Claire orienting Bobby to the ways of the cyber world on their last stay was probably a dangerous thing. "There was a major earthquake in Australia last night, ten-oh-five your time."

"That's close to the time Jesse popped out of our motel room. He said he was "too strong again" or something. Muttered about a growth spurt." Ben tapped his fingers impatiently.

"There's also wild stories about the area. Some call it a Garden of Eden, the forest is denser, greener. They say the wildlife will come right to you. But you can get so turned around you'll find yourself where you started." Bobby sighed, "You should call Dean and Cas. Don't handle this alone."

"Handle what?" Claire and Ben scrambled to say at the same time.

"This is the Antichrist we're talking about, kids. Not some run-of-the-mill evil-thing."

Ben and Claire looked at each other. Fucking Hunters, they were both thinking. "That kid was just that, Uncle Bobby. A kid. Jesse probably couldn't hurt a fly," Ben defended.

"You two better not – " Claire punched the "end call" button before Bobby could finish.

"We have to warn Jesse." Claire was already scrambling to gather their stuff. "God, if they don't already know they'll be on their way."

Ben grabbed Claire. "Calm down. Please. Jesse has taken care of himself this long, I think he can handle another day or two without – "

"This is our fault – "

"Woah now," Ben glared. This was not going to be one of those moments where he insisted they were a "we" thing.

" – I shouldn't have pressed so hard. Y'know what will happen if Cas and Dean – "

A flurry of activity happened at once. Jesse appeared in their room, and by the distress on his face he had come because of their own anxieties. Claire didn't even have the chance to reach him before she was being pulled back and Dean and Cas were there. The angel's eyes were focused on Jesse and Ben didn't like the look there. It was fury and fear; two things that always made trouble when paired together.

"Stand back, Claire." Castiel barely flicked his eyes to her.

"No!" No one was more surprised than Castiel when Claire threw herself in front of Jesse. "You've got him all wrong."

"It is dangerous." Neither of them wanted to hear Jesse being referred to as "It".

Dean stepped forward, and at least one of them understood the human element in their relationship. "Ben," he tried.

"Sorry, Dad. I'm with Claire on this one." Ben couldn't explain their automatic alliance with Jesse; he thought, briefly, that Jesse could be influencing them to go against their fathers for him. But one look at Jesse, knowing he could hear the thoughts, and the anguish on his face at hearing them. Ben didn't, wouldn't believe that Jesse could do that.

They tried to talk over each other, "Stand aside, Claire. The Antichrist must be dealt – " "Ben you have no idea what you're de – " Every thing went black.

From one moment to the next, between Castiel telling Claire to step aside and Dean trying to talk him down, they found themselves in a forest. A breathtaking wood where, Ben would swear, the trees really did touch the sky. Claire was staring bug-eyed at a purple flower that was the size of a kiddie pool. "Where are we?" she breathed.

"This is where I live." The thrumming power that rolled off Jesse in their motel room had stopped, but he was still shifting on his feet. "I'm most relaxed here."

"So, we're in Australia." Ben was rubbing a leaf (a leaf that was easily the size of Ben) between two fingers. Ben had never been outside the continental United States, but he was pretty sure some of this "garden" didn't exist anymore.

"Sort of." Jesse took a seat at a small stone table. "I needed some where safe to hide, but I can manipulate time and space – so. Yeah. And to stay calm I surrounded myself with things that are beautiful. To make it work I've got to pull from several different places around the world. So, technically some of this is in Australia, South America, Indian, Russia... You get the idea." Jesse had his hands flat, fingers flexing. "I'm sorry if I started something between you and your dad, Claire."

Claire snorted and took a seat next to him. "Cas and me always butt heads. Don't think that little tiff had anything to do with you." Claire grabbed Jesse's hands in hers; both boys were surprised, but Ben's fearless love didn't bat an eye. Not even when the air around them started to hum again. "I'm sorry I taunted you into coming out."

"I was lonely, and now I have you guys. I'm not complaining." Jesse smiled, shyly. Ben took a seat at the table, and let his knee knock Claire's; she pressed closer. They both knew something about being alone.

Ben gripped Jesse's shoulder. "You're right. You do have us now. We'll protect you." Jesse and Claire snorted and Ben knew that the Antichrist didn't need protection. Not in the sense that they'd be saving him from Big Bads, but he did need friends. Friends who wouldn't screw him or use him.