A/N : Part one of what is going to be a series. Written for the October Fuckyeayjohnlockfanfic contest.
Sherlock Holmes was neither a religious or superstitious man. He did not believe in Heaven or Hell, ghosts, vampires, and most definitely did not believe in demons. He was, by his very nature, scientific, choosing to not accept something there was no hard evidence of.
Of course, as all great stories go, Sherlock Holmes soon found himself face to face with something that bent the rules of reality, stretched the imagination, and dug itself into the darkest recesses of a person's mind.
It all started with a call.
John and Sherlock were attending to a crime scene, Lestrade and company in tow, when John's mobile began ringing. That in itself was not an extraordinary event, obviously, but the name flashing across his screen was. John Winchester hadn't called him for almost a decade, since that one week he and the man spent running through the forests of Colorado after a nest of vampires.
(Oh yes, perhaps I forgot to mention, John Watson and Sherlock Holmes are two very different men. John moved into Baker Street with his trusty detective a year after being stabbed by a vicious shapeshifter in Nevada. He of course, believes in all things terrible that go bump in the night, but has found a way of hiding his past from Sherlock, much with the help of one Mycroft Holmes.)
John moved away from the scene, pointing to his mobile and mouthed 'important' to Lestrade who nodded. John moved towards an alley before answering. "John?"
"No, this is Dean Winchester, his son," a gruff voiced explained on the other end.
John blinked. "You're John's kid; you were about twelve when I worked with your father."
"Yeah, yeah, let's skip the pleasantries alright? Short story is that dad's dead, Sammy and I have taken over the family business and we need your help."
John glanced over to where Sherlock and Lestrade were arguing heatedly over something. "I got out of the business boys; I can't just jump right back in. I live in London now, and have a job and-"
"John, you are the last fucking chance we have alright? We've talked to everyone and dad has you circled in his book as being the best, and right now we need the fucking best." John could hear the anger bubbling inside Dean, wondering what the hell could be that important.
"I take it we're not talking werewolves or vampires then. What's going on across the pond boys?"
"Someone is trying to steal Christmas."
If Dean hadn't had sounded so sincere John may have laughed in his face and hung up the phone. But John knew John Winchester, and if his sons were anything like him then John knew there was no way Dean was taking the piss with him. "Let me get this straight, someone is trying to steal a holiday? How is that possible?"
A new voice answered, one that John figured to be Sam. "Not stealing it per se, just kind of ruining it."
"Do you know who it is?"
"Some guy going by the name of Jack Skellington. Using witchcraft to enchant gifts, and they're harming parents who're bringing them home for kids."
"If you know who he is then why are you calling me?" John glanced back over at the crime scene to see a very impatient-looking Sherlock Holmes glaring at him. He held his hand up, pointing at the mobile and signed that he'd be through in three minutes. Sherlock merely blinked at him.
"Because no one knows how to catch him. He's elusive and we still don't know how to stop him. No one else wants to help us, so that's why we called you. You in or not?" The last line was flung in by Dean, growing more impatient by the second.
"I'm in on one condition."
"What's that?" Sam asked.
"Sherlock comes with me." There was no way he was going to up and leave Sherlock for god knows how long, and maybe the introduction to John's past might finally put a few things at ease. Not that Sherlock would believe half of what could possibly happen, but John had always been stubborn in his own ways.
"Wait. Sherlock? Like the Sherlock Holmes, like the detective?"
John thought Sam sounded like a fanboy at the moment, and almost regretted his decision. "Yes, the one and only."
Dean came back on the line, and John could almost hear him roll his eyes over the phone. "Sammy here thinks highly of him, reads about his cases online. He might die if he gets to meet the guy."
"Trust me, he's an arse. Hate to break it to you Sam, you'll hate him." The man in question was currently beckoning to John, stamping his feet on the ground and looked very much like a three-year-old in their first stages of a tantrum. "Now, I have to go take care of the child in my charge named Sherlock. I can get into any airport, where do you need me?"
"Tulsa, Oklahoma was where he was last spotted, thought we could start there."
"See you in a few hours then boys; I'll be on a plane in half an hour."
"You can get a ticket that fast?"
John grinned into the mobile; there were certainly perks at babysitting the British Government's baby brother. "Faster depending on traffic."
"See you then, let us know when you touch down, we'll be at the airport."
"Alright, see you soon." John hung up, moving to quell the storm brewing in Sherlock's face. "Hush Sherlock, we're going on a holiday right now, over to America for a bit. In fact we're going to go back to Baker Street and pack right this instant, just finished an important phone call."
That did the trick; Sherlock was suddenly silent and unmoving. He blinked a few times at John, before finally speaking. "I'm in the middle of a case!"
"Yes and I've been called in on an urgent matter." John pulled out his phone to send a message to Mycroft. 'As I'm sure you know by now, Winchester brothers have alerted me to the problem stateside. I need the jet, a shotgun, a gallon of holy water – just bring everything in the safe.'
He sent the text off, grabbing a sputtering Sherlock's hand and whisked the man into a cab. He felt energy thrumming through his veins, much like he did on an adrenalin packed chase with Sherlock and suddenly felt every hunter instinct he'd picked up kick right back in. His mobile vibrated moments after he'd sent the text and he looked at the screen, Mycroft's name glowing at him. 'Everything is ready; customs has been handled here and at Tulsa. Take care not to let Sherlock get possessed and please do save Christmas.'
John met the Winchesters outside of the airport, shoving his duffel and Sherlock's bag into what he perceived to be John Winchester's 1967 Chevy Impala. The men exchanged brief handshakes before piling into the car.
John had handled Sherlock on the cab ride home, saying that it would pique Sherlock's interest more than any case ever had, rating about a thirteen on Sherlock's numeral scale. He had refused to tell Sherlock any pertinent details until the man was standing on American soil. Sherlock had blessedly kept quiet as John thumbed through his hunting manual, refreshing his memory before he set off with Sam and Dean.
They travelled in quiet silence until Sherlock finally had enough and burst out "will someone explain what all of you are hiding from me in a car full of weapons?"
Sam's head whipped around as he heard Sherlock's words. "You deduced that?"
Sherlock stared at him, his facial expression flat. "It wasn't that hard. All three of you smell like gunpowder and cleaning oil, even over the smell of gas from the brawny one's shoes it's noticeable. What I don't understand are the jugs of water or the smell of salt permeating the car."
John watched Dean and Sam carefully, catching Dean's eye in the rear-view mirror before he opened his mouth to explain. "You see Sherlock; I didn't tell you what was so important because you'd never believe me. I had a quite different life than I've led you to believe. I wasn't wounded in the war, I was stabbed by a shapeshifter and decided to call it quits from my hunting job."
"A shapeshifter? Those aren't real. What does that have to do with hunting?"
John let out a long-suffering sigh. "Shapeshifter, changeling, or oaf, depending on who you are or where you're coming from. I used to hunt things with Sam and Dean's dad, John Winchester. We took down a nest of vampires in Colorado once. The thing is Sherlock; we don't really talk about this stuff. We go, we hunt, and most of us die doing it. It's hard to get out. Even when living with you I was constantly aware of everything around us, terrified that I'd evoked the wrath of something and you'd be put in danger."
Sherlock studied John's face, his own set in a cool, hard expression. "Preposterous, there are no such things as supernatural beings. It's absurd!"
Right as Sherlock finished speaking a noise was heard and suddenly a man in a trenchcoat was seated next to John.
"Bloody hell!" John yelped, moving away.
"Sam, Dean, I have information on the man you are searching for," the stranger spoke as if he hadn't just materialised in the car.
"Cas, this is John and Sherlock, John's helping us on the case and Sherlock's just a tourist," Dean explained, grinning a bit at the look on Sherlock's face.
"I know who they are, John Watson and Sherlock Holmes, good to meet you. I am Castiel, an angel of the Lord."
John could almost hear the gears whirring inside Sherlock's brain; the poor man was twenty minutes in and had already been confronted by his first supernatural being. Perfect. "You're what?" Sherlock nearly screeched in John's ear, leaning across him to scrutinise Castiel.
"An angel of the Lord. Give it time, you will understand soon enough."
Sherlock stiffened, thoughts whirling through his head as he tried to understand what, precisely, was happening. Yes, he had seen the man materialise from thin air, but there was no God, no Heaven, and no angels. None of this added up, not to mention John's explanation from earlier.
Dean's voice cut through the sudden silence of the car. "So, Cas, you said you had something for us?"
"Yes. I believe that you're looking for a god, the one that goes by Loki," Castiel explained before vanishing from the car once again.
"Does he do that often?" John asked, looking warily at the vacated seat.
Dean laughed, "More often than you could imagine."
"So Loki, like the Loki?" Sam ventured, trying to get the conversation on track.
"You mean the dude with the gold horns and the leather in that movie?" Dean laughed, earning a stern look from his brother.
"Like the god of mischief Dean, from Norse mythology," Sam replied, rolling his eyes.
"Right. And Cas couldn't have told us where to find him?"
"It's obvious isn't it?" Sherlock droned from the backseat.
John looked at him, "Sherlock, no it isn't obvious."
Sherlock huffed, crossing his arms over his chest. "You're obviously hunting whatever you think is sending out these defective toys, last seen here. It's closing in to be the third day tomorrow, which means the day after he'll be gone, like the pattern has been so far. I would say the first place to look is the toy manufacturing company located in the heart of the city."
Sam turned around to gawk at Sherlock. "That was amazing."
"Thank you but John has expressed that in every variant known to the human language since we first met, it does tend to get quite droll."
Dean huffed out a laugh as he took the next exit to find a motel. "We'll research and then have a plan of action tomorrow."
Sherlock was sitting snootily in a chair, glaring at the accommodations Dean had procured for them as the other three occupants of the room scoured for information.
"There's a toy factory ten minutes away from here, that has to be the place," Sam yawned, his nose almost pressed to his laptop screen.
Dean stretched, glancing up from the books in front of him, "I've got squat on this so-called Loki god."
"He's a trickster god, maybe he can be taken down like they are," supposed John, looking at his own book from the safe Mycroft had for him.
"How is that?" Dean asked, looking over at Sam.
Sam turned the laptop around. "We have to stake him through the heart, only problem is, the stake has to be dipped in the blood of one of his victims."
John groaned, "that's impossible!"
"Hey, didn't one of the people die of a heart attack though? That old lady with the decapitated head in the box?" Dean grinned.
"Oh god it's like having a second Sherlock. Does he get happy over deaths all the time?" John groaned, looking between Dean and Sherlock.
"Only when it means we can kill the son-of-a-bitch we're after," Dean explained, waving a hand in the air.
John, Dean, and Sam stood smiling at the morgue director, fake IDs in hand. They had left Sherlock grumbling at the motel while they went to gather what they needed.
Sherlock had complained the entire time about having taken John on all of his adventures all whilst cutting Dean down for patronising him.
The three had finally just left the detective stewing on a bed while running down to the morgue.
"I don't see why they asked you boys to come in," Dr Harrison grumbled as he pulled the body out of the locker.
"Well Mr Harrison, with all of these strange toy problems going on the CDC just wants to make sure something else isn't going on here," Dean told the man.
The morgue director nodded before walking away to show John the autopsy report.
A few minutes later Sam and Dean were casually thanking the doctor as John waved the report in the air, telling him they would be in touch if anything arose.
"Well that was like taking candy from a baby," Dean laughed, pulling the vials of blood from his pocket and set them in a box in the back of the car. Now let's get ready to hunt some Loki tonight."
Two in the morning found all four of them sneaking into the back door of Baskerville Toy Company. John had brought Sherlock along, telling Sam and Dean of his valuable observation skills. Sherlock had been given a gun on the promise that he only shoot if he was separated from the group and was being attacked.
The door creaked open as the men sneaked through, first Dean, then John, Sherlock, and Sam making up the end. Dean stepped fully into the room lit dimly by sparse exit signs and the moonlight in the windows.
Dean checked around the edge of the corridor and nodded for everyone to advance.
"He's in the manager's office," Sherlock whispered, pointing to where a shadow was moving in the upper window, a soft light spilling out.
John nodded, "there seems to be the one door out front, we'll lose the element of surprise,"
Sam pointed to Dean. "Dean and I'll go first, John, you get ready to stake him, and Sherlock, you distract him."
The other men nodded as they started their silent ascent to the office. Dean crouched next to the door, Sam behind him as John's hand closed around the knob. John yanked the door open as Sam and Dean rushed in, scrabbling with the slender figure. John followed, holding the stake about his head as Sherlock shot into the air before entering.
Just as suddenly as they entered, everything stilled. John looked down to where a pale man in a black suit pinstriped white was struggling in vain against Sam and Dean. The man had a deathly pale face with a black sutured line jagging across for his mouth. His eyes were circled so darkly black that John was unsure if the creature had eyes at all or simply hollows where they once stood.
"Who are you?" questioned Sherlock.
The man smiled. "Jack Skellington, the pumpkin king."
"Better known as Loki," Sam growled, shaking him.
"Oh, so you have heard of me?"
That was enough for John who plunged the stake into the trickster's heart, causing him to cry out and fall back onto the pile of toys.
Sam and Dean held on for a few minutes longer until they were sure the man was dead.
"That seemed extremely too easy," Dean growled, looking down at the corpse.
"Yeah, but look, all the toys he'd tampered with have disappeared," Sam pointed out.
The toys indeed had moved, and when they looked down, Loki's body had disappeared as well.
The drive back to the airport was relatively quiet. Dean had music playing softly and Sherlock was staring out the window.
"Did you ever miss this life, moving to Baker Street, John?" Sam asked.
Sherlock turned to look at John as he answered, "well, moving to Baker Street is the same sort of thing except Sherlock and I hunt criminals and I used to hunt supernatural beings."
"Fair enough," grinned Dean as he pulled up outside the airport.
"If you boys ever need me again, you have my number."
"It was great meeting you Sherlock," Sam said, smiling.
"Likewise." Sherlock inclined his head as one of Mycroft's detail met them at the door.
John knew something was up when Sherlock had remained silent for the flight home and the next two days.
"It's a lot to take in isn't it? Finding out there's so much even you didn't know."
Sherlock tilted his head, looking at John strangely. "I take it Mycroft knows?"
"Yeah, he's the one who's kept all my stuff safe since I moved in." John took the seat next to Sherlock on the couch.
"Have you ever hunted for him since you've been living with me?"
"No, but I have done some research for him."
"Would you hunt if he asked?" Sherlock's eyes were searching John's face, looking for a key to unlock the answers to all the questions he had.
"Yeah, I think I would."
"Would you rather hunt for him than solve crimes with me?"
John barked out a laugh. Of course Sherlock thought John would leave him for hunting. "Come here," he sighed, holding out his arms. "I would never leave you and our crime solving for a hunting job. I got out and I intend for it to stay that way."
A dark figure lurked in the shadows of the kitchen of Baker Street before disappearing back to find its boss waiting, a glass of burbon in hand. "Sir, I have located John Watson, he just got back from a trip with the Winchesters."
"Perfect," Crowley replied. "We have them all right where we want them."