Fallen Angel – Part 17
Dean awoke with a start, his heart thudding painfully against his chest, the memory of the dream which had awakened him fresh. He looked down at Stacey, her warm body snug against his and pressed a kiss to her forehead before slipping out of bed. He pulled on some sweats, the soft fabric hanging low on his naked hips.
Padding softly across the room he stopped at the door and glanced back at the woman in the bed, her features illuminated by the light flooding through the doorway. His eyes narrowed on the purple bruise spreading across her cheek. Guilt swept over him as he recalled how he had been unable to protect her, that it had been his hands that caused her pain.
He made his way downstairs into the kitchen and pulled an ice cold beer from the fridge. He popped the cap and tossed it onto the counter, wincing as the movement pulled on the injuries to his chest. Leaning against the counter, he took a long swallow, the liquid cool as it slid down his throat.
He walked to the table and sat, placing his beer in front of him, fingers loosely running over the cool length of the bottle. He stared ahead, as images from the warehouse ran through his mind each one bringing another wave of guilt.
Dean raised haunted eyes to meet those of his brother who stood hesitantly in the doorway. "Sammy... looks like it's going around."
"Yeah." Sam said quietly. He walked into the room and sat opposite his brother, his gaze drawn to the stark white bandage covering Dean's chest. "You in pain?"
"Not so much... Bobby stuffed enough horse pills into me. I don't think I'll be feeling anything for another couple of hours."
"You?" Sam had been out cold for so long in the warehouse. Dean had been sure that some serious damage had been done to his head, but other than a massive bump he seemed to be okay.
Dean nodded and fell silent.
Sam stared at his brother who was uncharacteristically subdued. He didn't know the full details of what had happened in the warehouse, but he knew that it had been bad. He had awoken with a massive headache to find that Dean had been shot and his protection tattoo had been destroyed. Stacey had been a mess; beat to all hell, her wrist broken. Neither had spoken about what had happened, had just said that Crowley had saved them.
At Dean's insistence Bobby had taken Stacey to the Emergency Room to have her wrist set. Stacey had gone reluctantly, not wanting to go without him, but Dean had refused to get proper treatment, had said that it would raise too many questions if he arrived with a bullet wound. Instead he insisted that they patch him up.
It was fortunate that the bullet had gone straight through. Zara had cleaned out the wounds and stitched him up, whilst he demolished a bottle of whiskey. As soon as Stacey was back Dean had practically dragged her upstairs to get cleaned up. They hadn't seen either of them since.
He'd been awake when he'd heard Dean come downstairs, had followed behind hoping to get him to open up.
"Dean what happened?"
"We shouldn't have been there Sammy." Dean said quietly. He took a swallow of his beer. "When Stace turned up we should have left... The damn demon was waiting for us, knew that she was in town. It used us as bait and I fell for it like some freaking snot nose rookie on his first hunt."
"You can't blame yourself –"
"Can't I? The son of a bitch was prepared, had planned everything out. Christ if it wasn't for Crowley she'd be dead-"Dean snapped, his expression fierce, his hands clenched tightly into fists. "How could I have been so stupid?"
"Dammit Sammy it sliced through my tattoo and freaking took up shop."
Sam paled as he realised what his brother was saying. He'd been possessed, the demon had used him as another way of torturing Stacey and now he was torturing himself with the knowledge that he had hurt the woman that he loved. Intentional or not, it would be one more thing that Dean would add to his long list of perceived failures, of the people he thought that he had let down.
"Stacey shot you?"
Dean laughed, the memory making him grin. He shook his head as he brought the bottle to his lips. "Stacey was freaking awesome!"
"My girl put up a Hell of a fight and yeah she shot me. The damn demon squealed like a pig.." He trailed off, once again looking down at the bottle.
"Then things went to Hell. As soon as he got a hold of her that was it game over."
"Dean she's okay."
"Yeah thanks to Crowley...What's that about? Where the Hell was Cas?"
"Last resort, there weren't any other hunters in the area and Bobby couldn't get Cas." Sam said quietly, he knew that on top of everything Dean would be worrying about his friend. Castiel had never failed to be there when they needed him, and for him not to appear was concerning.
"Crowley... well according to Bobby he showed up, pissed as Hell but tore back out when he told him what was going on. The next thing he'd dropped me back here and went to get you and Stacey. You know the rest."
"There's been nothing from Cas?"
"No Dean I'm sorry."
"Dammit Cas." Dean had a feeling that Castiel was in trouble. Nothing would have stopped him coming after them if he could.
Sam stared long and hard at his brother as he visibly deflated. He had lost so much; if something had happened to Cas then he'd be devastated. "I'm sure he's okay."
Dean nodded, but didn't say a word. Instead he lifted his beer and drained the bottle.
"Dean, you're not going to do anything stupid are you?"
"Like what Sammy?" Dean asked with a quirk of his brow.
"Oh I don't know... move back to the Impala, leave Stacey to deal with this alone?"
"No Samantha I'm not." Dean laughed. If there was one thing he was sure of it was that, no matter what he wasn't backing off. Remembering Crowley's statement to the demon, Stacey was his and he sure as Hell wasn't letting her go.
Sam drained his beer, satisfied that Dean was not about to run off.
"Good..." Sam trailed off, considering whether it was a good time to bring up what was on his mind. He took a deep breath. "I've been thinking of asking Zara to marry me?"
Dean looked up and grinned.
"I know we've not been together long, but I love her so damn much and with the baby..."
"Sammy that's awesome." Dean said. "Are you sure she'll take you?"
"Dammit Dean, don't say that. I'm nervous enough as it is."
Dean stood and walked around the table. He pulled his brother from his chair and dragged him into a fierce hug. Wincing slightly as he once again pulled on his stitches. "That girl loves you Sammy, she's having your baby. There's no way she's saying no."
He let his brother go, his thoughts drifting to the woman asleep upstairs. "Do you remember what our lives were like before we met those women upstairs?"
Sam looked at his brother quizzically. "To be honest Dean I try not to-"
"Borderline alcoholic and a recovering demon blood addict. Our lives were in the toilet."
"No let me finish. It just feels like we must have done something right. Maybe God gives a crap after all."
"Yeah maybe." Sam nodded, and then yawned. "Well this recovering addict is going back to bed."
"Me too." Dean smiled and pulled his brother in for another hug. "Love you Sammy."
"Love you Dean."
The brothers made their way upstairs, each going into their respective rooms.
Dean stripped out of his pants and slid naked into bed, pulling an unresisting Stacey into his arms. Uncaring as his shoulder protested the rough treatment. He needed to feel her skin on his, her heart beating strongly under his hand. He sighed and pressed a kiss into her hair. He didn't know how she was going to cope with this latest round of abuse, but was clear on one thing. She wouldn't be dealing with it alone this time.
"I can hear you thinking Dean." Stacey whispered her voice husky from sleep.
"I'm sorry I woke you Stace, go back to sleep."
Stacey opened her eyes, adjusting to the dim light in the room. She could tell that dawn was breaking, the sun slowly ushering in a new day. She ran a hand lightly across his chest, smiling as she felt him take a shuddering breath.
"I'm sorry I shot you."
"I'm not..." Dean trailed off, entwining his fingers gently with hers, careful not to jar her broken wrist. "Christ Stace I'm so proud of the way you stood up to that son of a bitch."
"No Stace, don't do that to yourself. You've been through enough."
Stacey lay quietly for a moment, relishing the heat of his body against hers. "I won't but you have to promise me that you won't blame yourself for what happened. If we're going to have a chance at getting past this we need to put it behind us, move forward." She sighed, hesitant to put her real fear into words. "I need to know that you're not going to disappear on me again Dean."
Dean tightened his hold, rolling her gently until she was lying on her back and he could look into her eyes, he needed her to know that he was done running. He reached down and gently pushed her long fringe from her eyes, his finger trailing softly over the purple bruise on her cheek. "I'm not going anywhere Stace, I'm afraid you're stuck with one slightly damaged hunter."
Her eyes sparkled in the dull light, her smile brilliant as she recognised the sincerity that shone from his eyes. "I can live with that."
So I decided to stop Fallen Angel here. I hope that you enjoyed it. I have a few other chapters written but they flow into a whole new story. I hope to find the inspiration to continue with the series. Watch this space.