Author's Note; Thanks to tigereyekum (Yes they are.) for reviewing the last chapter! I own nothing you recognize!
Sioux Falls, South Dakota
Kiran hated hospitals. Okay, so maybe that was a lie but at the moment she didn't feel too inclined toward the truth. Not at her sister's deathbed. Oh Leonara was conscious at times but she had taken the brunt of the hit, already been close to death despite having no visible injury, and she was slowly but surely drifting away. At the moment she was sleeping, face chalky and pale, while Kiran watched crappy daytime television. Vaguely she remembered Dean's comments about daytime television when he'd been dying and her lips tried to tug up in a smile before she remembered that Dean was comatose too and tears threatened.
"You okay?" Kiran swiped at her eyes hastily and turned to look at Sam. She knew he was taking this hard too and she was trying not to dissolve into a total mess around him.
"Fine," she mumbled, offering a half hearted smile. "How's the rest of the crew?"
"Dean's the same," Sam replied tiredly. "John's asking for supplies for something. I'm heading to Bobby's to check on the shape of the Impala and pick up what he needs. You want to come?"
"No," Kiran mumbled, shaking her head tiredly. "Stay safe Sammy."
"I promise," Sam reassured her before heading for the door. The instant Sam was gone Kiran turned back to her sister, brushing a gentle hand through flaxen blonde hair. Leonara didn't shift, just sighed once, and Kiran knew her sister wasn't going to wake any time soon. With a sigh she stood and headed for Dean's room. The older Winchester boy was still as death, his face pale and all kinds of wires and tubes attached. Kiran didn't remember much from the car crash but she did remember Dean shielding her from harm and now he lay in a hospital bed close to death.
"You better get well again you son of a bitch," Kiran told him, blinking back tears. "Otherwise I'll kill you." Then she leaned down, kissed him on the forehead, and left the room.
Being a ghost was a pain in the ass. That was Dean Winchester's official story and he was sticking to it. Sam and John hadn't been able to hear or see him. To make matters worse he'd just seen his body lying limp and close to death on a hospital bed. Then he'd followed Sam into another hospital room, this one with Kiran sitting next to a hospital bed. When he saw Leonara lying there, still and silent, he choked on air he didn't really need. "You okay?" Sam asked and Kiran tired to give him a weak smile.
"Fine," she replied. "How's the rest of the crew?"
"Dean's the same," Sam informed her, sounding as worn out as Kiran did. Dean winced at hearing his name and the little flicker of hope in Kiran's eyes that died away when his little brother told her that. "John's asking for supplies for something. I'm heading to Bobby's to check on the shape of the Impala and pick up what he needs. You want to come?"
"No." Kiran's voice was just a mumble now, tired and careworn. "Stay safe Sammy." Dean was pretty sure he was the only one in the room that caught the slight wince when Kiran used his nickname for Sam.
"I promise," Sam reassured Kiran regardless of how much he was hurting. Then he was gone and Kiran was turning her attention to her sister. He watched as Kiran brushed her sister's hair away from her still face and then stand, heading out of the room. He followed Kiran to his own deathbed, watching as she leaned over his still body.
"You better get well again you son of a bitch," Kiran told him, voice harsh with unshed tears. "Otherwise I'll kill you."
"I'll already be dead," Dean told her with a snort, blinking back tears of his own. "I wish you could hear me sweetheart," he said, lifting out a hand to stroke over her cheek. "So we could figure this thing out." Instead all he could do was watch as she walked away.
"Kaia?" Leonara's voice was a frail whisper that almost broke Kiran's heart as she returned to her sister's hospital room.
"I'm here Cupcake," Kiran reassured her sister, rushing over. "How do you feel? Need more pain meds?"
"Not yet," Leonara muttered, voice strained. "Wanna stay awake."
"Water?" Kiran tried and got a weak nod in reply. She fumbled for the cup of lukewarm water on the beside table and gently lifted it to her sister's mouth, being careful that Lee didn't choke.
"Love you Fruit Loop," Leonara managed to whisper out and Kiran smiled at her. Footsteps in the doorway caught Kiran's attention and she turned to see Sam standing in the doorway with wide eyes.
"Sam," she and Leonara both said at the same time and Sam blinked, staring at them both before Kiran impatiently beckoned him over.
"What is it?" she asked impatiently.
"It's Dean," Sam seemed to force out and Kiran knew she was paling. "I think- this is the craziest thing I've ever said- I think my brother's spirit is walking around outside his body." There was a long moment silence as the sister's stared at Sam, uncomprehending.
"What makes you think that?" Kiran asked finally.
"I was arguing with Dad when this glass just shattered out of nowhere this glass just shattered," Sam began but Leonara cut him off with a weak huff.
"Why were you arguing?" she pushed out.
"I'll tell you in a minute," Sam reassured her and Leonara nodded, content for the time being. "Then Dean was flat lining not long after-"
"Dean was dying?" Kiran squeaked, unable to help how her voice rose with terror at the thought that Dean might have died without her known and anger at the thought that no one had bothered to tell her.
"He's stable for now," Sam said, turning his reassuring tone to Kiran who forced herself to relax and allow Sam to continue. "When they were trying to stabilize Dean I could almost swear that I heard Dean's voice. It was like I could feel him there even though I couldn't see him."
"So we get an Oujia board or something and try to communicate with him," Kiran suggested after a moment. "And in the meantime Lee can keep an eye out to see if Dean comes by here."
"Right," Sam said, relaxing some. "You'll help me Kaia."
"Sure Sammy," Kiran replied, following him out of the room. "There's something you're not telling me," she added as soon as they were out of the hospital.
"Dad's trying to summon the demon," Sam said, voice harsh and angry. "I don't know what for and I don't want to know."
"Oh Sammy," Kiran said, stopping and reaching up to place a hand on his shoulder. Sam stopped too and turned exhausted eyes towards her.
"It's like he's totally written Dean off," he said, voice soft and hurt. "And he's mad at me for not shoot and killing the demon even though it would have killed him and Dean would have never forgiven me." Kiran squeezed his shoulder gently and then smiled.
"We'll make it through this," she promised Sam and then led the way down the street. It was time to find a way to contact Dean. And afterwards? Afterwards Kiran was going to have a long talk with one John Winchester.
He had to be honest, John Winchester had been expecting the storm of fury that was Kiran Ellis hours ago. He was only surprised that she'd waited as long as she had to blow into the room. "What are you up to?" she snarled, hands planted on her hips.
"What do you mean?" he asked calmly, hoping to defuse the time bomb that seemed to be ticking just underneath her skin. Instead his calmness only seemed to anger her further.
"Oh I don't know," she sneered. "Maybe blaming Sam for all this. I mean I know people who wouldn't care about killing their daddy but they were, or are still, all psychos. Sam isn't and you're killing him right now." Then her eyes fell on the items he'd had Sam collect and her eyes narrowed. "Oh no," she breathed, eyes widening. "You are not doing that."
"And why not?" John asked, not bothering to deny that he was going to do exactly what Kiran expected him to.
"It'll kill both of them."
"And if Dean dies Sam and I will self destruct," John admitted. "It's already happening and he's just dying." He sighed and ran a hand through his hair as Kiran leaned against the wall. "Dean is as close as Sam ever had to a father. I'm just the drill sergeant that never bothered to understand where he was coming from. I have to at least make this one thing right." Kiran sighed then, as if all the anger had just drifted out of her.
"You're not going to be alone," she told him finally and he stared at her, uncomprehending. She smiled, lips quirking up in amusement at his expression. "If you're going to do something this stupid I'm at least going to have your back until it's over."
Someone was here; Leonara could feel them. Sam had come into the room an hour ago to tell her that Dean's spirit was indeed roaming the hospital but that he was going after a Reaper. Leonara knew that Reapers going after targets who were naturally going to die couldn't be hunted. It was like trying to kill Death. Maybe it could be done but that didn't mean it should! "Hello Dean," she murmured softly, a gently silver glow settling around her as she activated her gift. The spirit of Dean Winchester let out a sigh of relief and came to settle in the chair Kiran had been practically living in recently.
"You can see me," he breathed, sounding ridiculously happy. "Thank God."
"Of course I can see you," Leonara said gently. "I'm the girl that sees ghosts, remember?"
"Right," Dean said. "Actually that was what I was hoping for. No one else can see me, not even Sammy who does a pretty good reenactment of Carrie at prom sometimes with those powers of his."
"That isn't his fault. He hasn't been trained properly."
"You mean someone could teach him to control it?"
"Kiran maybe," Leonara suggested after a moment's thought. "If she could figure out how they come to the surface she could teach Sam to manipulate them."
"Why not you?" Dean questioned. "You're dating him."
"Dean," Leonara said with a soft smile. "I'm dying."
"You're what?" Dean asked, voice actually squeaking at the end.
"I'm dying," Leonara repeated, lifting a hand to silence anything Dean was about to stay. "Remember when I told you about when Kiran and I were kidnapped." Dean nodded and Leonara sighed. "I gave up a chunk of my life for my twin. The doctor told me when I was brought in that my heart's been slowly failing for the past four years. The extensive strain using my gift to free your dad had on my heart along with the car crash spells the end. This is the end of the line for me."
There was a long moment of silence and then Dean said, "I'm so sorry Lee. So very, very sorry."
Leonara smiled gently back at him, well aware of the tears dripping down her cheeks. "So am I."
"The basement? Really?" Kiran ducked under another pipe, scowling at the back of John Winchester's head as if she could simply burn a hole in it and stop this entire thing from happening.
"I know you aren't pleased with this but it's going to save Dean's life so the least you can do is to shut up," John told her, kneeling down to draw the correct symbols on the floor. Kiran placed the bowls and candles, then stepped back as John sliced across his arm and started chanting. The man came out of nowhere, place a hand on John Winchester's shoulder.
"What the hell are you doing here buddy?"
Kiran's eyes narrowed as John said, "I can explain."
"Don't bother," Kiran cut in, pulling the Colt out and cocking it.
"Just how stupid do you think we are?" John added and the man smiled, eyes turning bile yellow. Kiran's finger ached with the need to pull the trigger but she resisted the urge.
"Do you really want me to answer that?" the demon asked as two other figures in lab coats with pitch black eyes joined them. Kiran growled under her breath but kept the gun trained on the demon. "You conjuring me, John. I'm surprised. I took you for a lot of things. But suicidally reckless wasn't one of them."
"We could always just shoot him and call someone else," Kiran suggested, eyes narrowing.
"You could always miss," the bastard said, turning his smug grin to her. "I wouldn't be able to do anything to you because of arrangements downstairs but I could take out everyone else you care about. You only have one shot with that thing and if you miss? Well, you're both dead." Then he turned to John, smug smile still in place as Kiran fought to keep her hands from trembling as she processed the new information. She was claimed by someone in hell? "Did you really think you could trap me?" the demon asked John, interrupting Kiran's panicked train of thought.
"Oh I don't want to trap you," John said and Kiran couldn't help but smirk as the demon's own smirk faded. "I want to make a deal."
"And the girl with the gun?"
"Just insurance to make sure you don't just decide to kill us both," John replied.
The demon thought for a moment, then nodded. "Okay then. I'm listening."
"Dean's dying," John said, suddenly sounding tired. "So I want to trade. My life for his."
"And the Colt?" John hesitated, glancing at Kiran who set her face and nodded. They'd found the Colt once, they could do it again.
"You can have it with me, as soon as I see that Dean is fine."
"Deal," the demon said with his wide smirk back in place and, just as suddenly as he had appeared before he vanished. Kiran flipped the safety back on and handed the gun to John.
"I really hope you know what you're doing," she told him, heading for the stairs.
"Kiran," John called after her and she paused, glancing over her shoulder. "I do." She smiled tiredly at him and then took the stairs two at a time. It was time to get back to her sister.
Kiran scrambled into her sister's room only to hear the single tone beep she'd dread. "No," she half sobbed. "No, no, nononono!" She scrambled to her sister's bed only to be pushed out of the way by the nurse. She watched, heart in her throat, as they attempted to revive Leonara. Watched as they wrote off her sister. Finally, as the room emptied, Kiran stumbled to her sister's side, squeezing a cold hand with her own. "You weren't supposed to leave me," she sobbed out, sinking down to her knees on floor. "You weren't supposed to leave me."
Sam and Dean found her after the tears had left her husked out and empty. Dean practically carried her out of the room, even though he'd been comatose since the wreck, and Sam was the one who found the letters. Three of them in creamy white envelopes with their names on the front in Lee's neat handwriting. Kiran started sobbing again the instant she saw them. Sam had tucked them away then and checked Dean out of the hospital, making the arrangements to pick up the bodies later while Dean held her and she cried. That night she dreamed of her sisters dancing in a field of wildflowers but no matter how fast she ran they were always just out of reach.
And that was the end of this story. The next one, In The Aftermath, should be up in the next few days and is where I'll start really playing with the plot. Be warned that some episodes of Season Two will be replaced with others/skipped altogether. Thank you for coming along for the ride!