Disclaimer: I do not own Supernatural or any of its characters.

The Impala needs a tribute. Need I say more?

Spoilers for well…everything, really. :P

Enjoy, and review, please!

Chapter One- More Than Just A Car

If the Impala didn't have a soul to begin with, she sure did have one after belonging to the Winchesters.

It had taken a while to be noticed by Castiel, hell, even Balthazar had given the Mother of All Eye Rolls when he found out.

And nothing fazed Balthazar. Ever. And that truly goes to show exactly how special the Impala was.

Perhaps it had always known, in a way, that there was more to it's life, or more aptly, it's existence, than an owner who sold Bibles and a peaceful life in a roomy, comfortable garage.

The Impala was an unremarkable car, albeit a very nice one. Standard black paint job; functional hood and fender, nothing fancy. Built for a normal, everyday life.

But that's not how it spent its days.

The Impala was to lead the most extraordinary life any car had ever led.

When it came into the hands of John Winchester, it knew, inexplicably, that this was the start of something.

What that something was, it did not know. It was just a car, after all.

Or maybe it wasn't. There wasn't anyone to judge, of course.

So it was there, when John met Mary, and fought with her on the spot.

It was there, when they finally gave in and submitted, and Mary and John started dating.

It was there when Mary made her deal with Azazel, terrified of losing John. Something in it stirred, at that moment, but didn't develop.

Not yet.

It was there, when Dean was born, the first Winchester boy, and it celebrated just as much as Mary and John did.

Something was growing in the Impala. A nascent seed of awareness, maybe, perhaps even a consciousness.

But the final transformation wasn't going to happen. It would wait, for darker times.

This too, the Impala knew, somehow.

It knew, when Sam was born, that something was going to happen, soon.

Something dark. Something evil.

And something did happen.

The Impala watched as the Winchester's home went up in flames, consuming the wood hungrily, greedily, watched Mary's blackened, bloodied silhouette burn, that would herald the misery, the evil to come into the lives of two young boys and an ex-Marine.

Could only watch as little Dean huddled against it's sturdy black hood, comforting a howling Sammy as much as he could, somehow finding comfort in that all-important activity for himself, too.

Even then, Dean looked after his little brother.

The change from car to something more cemented itself as the Impala saw the emptiness in John's eyes as he stared numbly at the flaming house.

That was around the time the Impala became a she, not an it.

The once-ordinary car became abnormally sentient, in the days when John became more taskmaster than father, and Dean became more man than boy, even at the tender age of four.

She was there, when Dean held his first gun at five, and killed his first ghost at six.

She was there that night, unbeknownst to John, when Dean sobbed in his bed after killing his first ghost woman, wondering if she had been someone's Mommy too.

She was there, wishing she could say something, too, when Sam found out about the supernatural.

She was there that bittersweet Christmas, with Dean and Sam and their clumsy, awkward gifts, somehow more precious in spite of the awkwardness, perhaps because of it, even when John wasn't.

She was there when Sam would fight with his father again and again; tired of the family business.

She was there the day Dean called her 'baby' for the first time, wondering what the quick hot flash of warm-light-bubbly effervescence meant.

She was there those lonely nights at Stanford, when it was Dean who would sweep the perimeter for Sam, not John, despite whatever he said to his Sammy later.

She was there, watching another blonde woman's body burn on a blood-soaked ceiling, which was vainly calling out to Sam, saying it's not your fault. He didn't notice, but the Impala did.

She was there, feeling the cold wave of foreboding that swept over her when she saw the same emptiness in Sam's eyes that had filled John's all those years ago.

It was then that she wanted desperately to talk, to talk to Dean, whom she loved the most, though Sam was a close second, and tell him to catch on to Sam, and not let him become the bitter husk that was John Winchester.

The short black woman had given her an odd look once or twice, sensing the presence of a not entirely human awareness, but she dismissed it.

A car was a car, after all.

She was there, when Dean went to Hell, and she was confused.

What was that cold, biting feeling in the very metal of her body?

Why did it disappear so suddenly, to turn warm, so warm, when Dean finally, finally returned, broken, damaged, but not beaten.

The Impala wasn't just a car. She was a home to two boys who'd lost everything they had, and would lose much more, in the years to come.

She was a place to heal wounds, to rest and recuperate, to feel, to stay.

The Impala was comfort. The Impala was safety.

To Dean, the Impala was the only woman he ever truly loved. The Impala was faithful, steadfast. She was Dean's.

To Sam, the Impala was slow, cramped, and reminded him of everything he'd left behind when he ran away to Stanford, and he loved her (grudgingly, it was true) all the more for it.

She was there, when the strange winged creature, which looked human but was not human, went from enemy to unwelcome ally to friend to brother.

She grew fond of him too, as she always did to anyone who needed it.

The Impala was special.

She was the car in which blood had been spilt; she was the car in which Dean finally lost his Sammy, in which Sammy became Sam, in which an angel wept for the very first time.

The Impala was the car in which two brothers stuck together, no matter what the world threw at them.

Sure, she was an ordinary-looking black car with a usually busted taillight, but to the Winchesters, and a few more notable people, she was much, much more.

You see, the Impala stayed, even when nothing else did.