Disclaimer: I still own nothing, but it's something we all endure, right? I did see some awesome Supernatural Lego men, those might ease the pain. I do love Lego people!
Okay, this will be the last chapter. I AM SO SAD ABOUT IT! I do intend to keep writing, have a yellow fever story lined up. How would you fellow fic-ers feel about a prequel to this story, you know, back when John first hunted Alice? Let me know!
Thank you all for the wonderful reviews, especially all of you who faithfully told me how you felt about the story, I am keeping my fingers crossed I will get to two hundred (or more!), so if you can…make a wish come true and leave a review, every review gets me closer!
Three weeks after leaving Alison Hilty's house in Tennessee, Jim Walsh was finally headed back to school in Atlanta. His time back in his parent's home had been lengthy, having to take the time to meet with the older men in the tribe and explaining again how he saved a man from the Wendigo spirit that had nested deep within him.
Jim drove slowly through the snow, the first road sign for Atlanta finally in sight. He was nervous, resuming his clinical work was going to seem so…dull…in comparison to the work he had been doing with the Winchesters. He felt in his pocket for the folded paper that held everyone's phone numbers. He knew he could call them if he wanted to change direction, whether it be geographical or his career choice. He sighed and gripped the wheel tighter, remembering what Bobby had told him on the porch before he left.
"We need good people in this life, especially people with prescription pads and medical knowledge," Bobby had said with a wink and a handshake. Jim sighed again; he would finish school before he started his own hunting career. Might even be able to help the Winchesters again, or Garth.
Jim glanced in the rearview mirror, expecting the see more traffic. Instead, he locked eyes with a man sitting in the backseat.
"Don't bother to slow down," the man said briskly as he adjusted his suit jacket. "Obviously, I won't need you to pull over to let me out."
Jim turned his eyes back to the highway, taking an occasional glance at the man in the backseat. He seemed quite content, his body language showing his total ease in the situation; obviously he knew he was in control. His black suit was tailored and his cologne faint, he had the air of importance, but Jim imagined it was self-appointed importance. The man seemed to be waiting for Jim to initiate the conversation, watching the traffic while occasionally looking at Jim in the mirror.
"What are you," Jim asked.
"Well, that would ruin the surprise wouldn't it," the man said, his voice a little gravelly. "Tell you what, how about you and I discuss a little business deal?"
"What do you want," Jim asked, trying to keep the nervousness out of his voice. He was failing.
"Wow! I am impressed, one field trip with the Winchesters and you're ready to just jump right on in," the man said, his British accent finally catching Jim's ears. "What do I want…Well, let's see. I could have used Dean Winchester dead; that would have gotten you a top spot on my party invite list."
"What are you talking about," Jim asked, leery. He glanced into the rearview mirror again, the man's eyes flickered red, so quickly Jim wasn't sure he had really seen it.
"You just drive, I'll talk," the man said. "In case you crash the car, I'll be back for you. Can't believe no one told you about me, makes me feel like the Winchesters just can't appreciate a good nemesis anymore."
Seven weeks after Sam had delivered Dean to Bobby's couch, they were going stir crazy. Bobby watched from the window as Dean hobbled across the snow covered junkyard, the crutch under his arm barely slowing him down as he headed for the garage. Bobby had just sat back down at his desk when Sam walked in the front door, slamming it behind him.
"Went that well, huh," Bobby called out. He heard Sam rummaging through the kitchen before he heard his heavy footfalls heading back down the hallway.
Sam stepped into the room and dropped into the other armchair. "He's pissed because the surgeon refused to take the cast off today," Sam stated. "He gets it off in one week and then starts his physical therapy."
"You and I both know he won't want to stick around here for that," Bobby said with a shake of his head. "And I am out of betting money." He pointed to a fifty dollar bill pinned to the wall, a sticky note attached to it.
"Seriously? Garth got a picture of the skunk ape," Sam asked. "Unbelievable!"
"That's what I said," Bobby muttered. "Told him I want to see the picture for myself, make sure he didn't just photo shop his hand into my wallet."
Sam laughed and stopped when he heard the front door slam. He and Bobby listened to the strange gait Dean had acquired, a light footfall, followed by the loud thud of the cast, he wasn't even trying to be quiet. They waited until Dean had walked into the room and dropped onto the sofa, tossing the crutch onto the floor.
"I got a call from your dad earlier," Bobby said. "He should be here in the morning, needs to do some research before heading off on a case in Virginia."
"Maybe he can take Sammy boy here with him," Dean ground out. "Get him out of our hair for a bit, huh Bobby?"
"Not going to be that easy to get rid of me Dean," Sam said with a smirk. "Who's going to make sure you're doing your training and exercises?"
"Bobby can do it," Dean mumbled. "You're drivin' me fricken crazy, Sam! Take a break."
"If anyone in this house is getting a break, it's me," Bobby interjected. "I've had to listen to both of you."
"Has anyone heard from Jim," Bobby asked suddenly. "Garth said he's been trying to get hold of him and hasn't had any luck."
The boys both shrugged and shook their heads. "I left him a few messages after Dean re-broke his leg, but I never heard back from him," Sam said. "I guess school is keeping him busy."
"Yeah, I guess that's it," Bobby said, his voice not sounding convinced. "I figured he would have called to check in on Dean by now. It's been a few weeks."
They sat quietly for a few minutes, each thinking back over the last several weeks. There had been arguments over whose turn it had been to do dishes, yelling back and forth over a laundry mishap involving a stray red sock that no one would claim ownership of after the whites turned pink, a few poker games, and a subtle battle that Dean had fought silently: mealtimes during the day and nightmares after dark. Since his arrival, he had improved exponentially; but not before Bobby had depleted his whiskey reserve. He had also listening to the brothers argue about Dean's leg; which had finally ended in a trip to the emergency room when Dean had fallen in the garage and cracked the bone just below the calcification. Surgery and a cast the size of Rhode Island had indeed been the answer.
Sam and Bobby had undertaken three small jobs while Dean was casted up. He had waited in the car each time, refusing to be left home with Rumsfeld to guard the place.
"Any word from Alice," Dean asked curiously from his position in the couch, not looking at either one of them as he raised the question.
Sam shook his head, Bobby shrugged his shoulders. "Not since last week when she called. She's probably still in California working on her tan," Bobby said. "Goodness knows we don't need the whole reunion at once around here."
Half a pot of chili and six beers later, the house had quieted down. Sam had long since gone to bed, leaving Dean dozing on the couch, his huge cast precariously hanging over the arm of the couch. Bobby finished pulling the books from the shelves that John would be looking through once he arrived in the morning, better to be prepared than wait for the last second. John Winchester was not a patient man.
He walked over to Dean and leaned down to the floor to scoop up the quilt Dean had been toting around the house for the past several weeks. It had caught his eye when Dean had first carried it out of the Impala the day they had arrived. The pattern was one of the few Bobby could recognize. The pieces interlocked perfectly, forming into its namesake, the log cabin with its fiery red center, representing the hearth, the center of the home. Bobby stretched the quilt over Dean, wondering how Alice was going to feel when she realized her prized log cabin quilt had been lifted from her own bed.
Somehow, Bobby didn't think she would mind.
The next morning was worse than usual. The snow had continued to fall throughout the night, making the path to the garage unsurpassable for Dean and his enormous cast. He thumped around the house noisily, making it nearly impossible for Sam to concentrate of the Latin inscriptions Bobby had asked him to work on. Tension was high and Bobby knew the arrival of John Winchester would only make things worse.
John arrived at noon, the rumble of the engine catching the ears of everyone inside. John didn't bother to knock, letting himself in the front door. The sound of dishes being moved around and the smell of food brought him right into the kitchen, where Bobby was frying up burgers while Sam was working through the last page of Latin.
"John," Bobby said with a nod, turning back to the stove. "Sounds like that engine is about to seize up. Better let me take a look at it before you head out."
"Fine," John mumbled. "Anyone hear from Alice?"
"She's in California," Sam said without looking up from the papers in front of him. "Why?"
"Curious," John said, rubbing a hand over his stubbly face. "She's got something I need to get from her."
Bobby snorted softly, flipping the burgers in the cast iron skillet. He knew that the decade old fight between John and Alice wasn't really over, might never be over. Alice had a long memory and a vicious streak; Bobby couldn't imagine what she had taken from John, the man didn't have much to lose.
"Bobby, did I really hear a rumor that Garth is on his way here to collect on a bet," John asked, a small smile crossing his face.
Bobby snorted again and turned to face him, "I'll pay up when I see it."
"Where is your brother," John asked Sam, glancing over the papers laid out in front of Sam.
"Probably asleep on the couch," Sam said without looking up. "Thank God for naps!"
John chuckled and asked, "He been difficult to deal with, since his leg got casted?"
"Worse than you can imagine," Bobby mumbled. "Although I kept thinking maybe that's why you kept delaying your trip here—"
"I have not been difficult!" Dean called out from the other room. They heard him tussle with the crutch, the sound of him walking across the room unmistakable.
"You're not an ideal patient, Dean," Bobby said. "You gimp around the house for a week on that bad leg, demand to work in the garage-even after Sam and I both said no-broke it and then complained all the way to the hospital. You heckled the nurses, told the surgeon to take a hike, and then checked yourself out early. And then you just moped around here all day, driving me and Sam crazy."
"Oh come on," Dean said, trying to pull off his most innocent look. "Like you and Sam are any easier to get along with! Sam ruined my favorite shirt with that red sock! And the only thing he can cook—is salad! And you, well, you're not most fun person to hang out with for seven weeks Bobby, the only card game you know is go fish!"
"Eat me!" Bobby said as he turned around to face Dean.
Three sets of eyes turned on Bobby.
He shrugged and turned back to the stove, "What, to soon?"
Well, this is the end. I'm sorry it took so long to finish it, deep down, I didn't want to! But, I think I'll start on another pretty soon. Please leave me a review, it's the last chapter so take a minute to think back over the story and remember what part of the story you liked the best. For me, hands down—the reviews! I loved knowing what each of you liked, hated, or were moved by. I hope you feel these many chapters were well worth your reading time, and I hope you come back and tag along with me on my next adventure into the whumpy world of Supernatural.
Remember, I'm open to suggestion and requests. If you want to read it, I want to write it! Drop me a line.