Disclaimer: I don't own Supernatural or any related characters. Those all belong to Kripke and the CW. The art is by the lovely just_ruth.
Author's Notes: Written for spn-bigpretzel's Halloween Reverse Micro Bang, based on the art by the lovely just_ruth. I was having a conversation one night with twisted-slinky about possible ideas for a funny story behind this piece, and as an afterthought, this plotline was born. I hope everyone enjoys it, especially my artist! Also, I've never been to Salem, Mass., nor did I do any deep research on this… purely fiction, folks. As for the SPN setting… um, it's post S3… but I'm not sure just how much post… well, in any case, it's definitely pre-S7. To see this with the art, please visit my livejournal at (remove spaces) patriciatepes. livejournal. com
Missing the Ferryman
A regular ghost hunt that just happened to fall on Halloween on the coastline of Salem, Massachusetts. Rumor had it that the ghost that the Winchesters had set up to hunt was rather famous. A tavern set up near the docks the ghostly woman was said to run down—causing an untold number of drowning deaths each October thirty-first—was even named after her, The Weeping Widow.
Sam and Dean had a time, a date, and a location for this ghost. One of their easiest hunts yet. Their only problem? The body. No one had any idea where the Weeping Widow was buried. But Sam had been confident, and he had reason to be. After all, there hadn't been a body yet that Sam and Dean Winchester hadn't been able to track down, salt, and burn. But it was now nearly time for the ghost to make her annual appearance—an hour to midnight on All Hallow's Eve—and all the boys had to go on was her story.
Rumor had it that the Weeping Widow was once Charlotte Grace Hester, daughter of Charles Hester who had once owned several commercial fishing boats. Charlotte had been raised a proper girl, a regular debutante. She was even set to marry the rival company's heir, uniting the two into a monopoly of fish in a time when no one really realized that maybe monopolies in business weren't really a great idea as far as the consumer was concerned. But Charlotte had done what every other teenage girl before her—and after her—had done. She rebelled, and eloped with one of the captains of one of her father's boats. The Hesters had been devastated by scandal, nearly forced to sell their company as a result. But Charlotte couldn't have given two shakes of a rat's ass about her parents' reputations. She was in love and happy. That was until a Halloween two years after their marriage. There was a storm coming in, bad, but Charlotte's dad had insisted that her husband take the boat out to make the catch of the day. Story went that Charlotte had raced down the dock, trying to call to her husband as the boat sailed away. Rain poured down and the young woman got sick and died. Her husband never returned home.
So, now Sam and Dean stood at the head of the dock, their rifles loaded with rounds of rock salt as they awaited the inevitable appearance of Charlotte's heartbroken ghost.
"So, she kills people by shoving them off into the water?" Dean asked.
Sam nodded. "Yes, Dean, for the millionth time. She knocks them into the water, and more times than not, the current drags them out and under, drowning them."
"As far as killer ghost women go, not really our most impressive," Dean noted.
Sam shrugged. Before he could reply, however, a large ship appeared, materializing in the distance. Dean's brow furrowed.
"Hey, you remember that one hunt… where, if you saw the ship…"
"Yeah. But I think that this is only part of the Charlotte Grace Hester experience," Sam answered, lifting his rifle.
And, again, almost on cue, the ghostly image of a woman flickered into sight. Her dress was large, with a wide skirt caught in a breeze that had not been there moments earlier. Her hair was long and a dark blonde. It was matted, as if she had just come in from a swim, and her cloths appeared to stick to her as much as that many layers of fabric could.
"Jonathan!" she called, running toward the opposite end of the dock.
Thankfully, Sam and Dean had been able to make up several well placed lies to ensure that nobody was populating the well-known haunt this Halloween. Of course, they were still mindful that some of the teenagers that had given the trouble might be around. So, as the continued to move, the Winchesters followed after.
"The storm!" she called. "Come back!"
But the boat moved off toward the horizon until it finally disappeared into the night, and the ghost came to a halt at the end of the dock, hugging her arms about herself.
"Hold it," Dean said, lifting his rifle.
Charlotte turned, dark eyes narrowed at him. She cocked her head to the right.
"Are you… hunters?" she asked.
Sam and Dean exchanged a look.
"Yeah," Dean answered.
The Widow sighed, a smile spreading across her face. She shrugged, throwing her hands into the air. She crossed her arms now, rolling her eyes.
"Thank God," she said. "Look, my parents buried me under an angel statue in the backyard of our manor. Dig down a few feet and you should find me there."
"Wait," Sam said, lowering his gun. "Are you… asking us to gank you?"
"Do you have any idea just how frustrating it is to relive the one moment that led to your death? Especially when it concerns missing a damn boat I had no hope of catching even when I was alive? And then to linger about, watching your parents bury you in an unmarked grave because they were too ashamed?"
The brothers exchanged a look. Charlotte nodded.
"Yeah. I'll tell you what, if there was a time I wished I could leave this damn dock… it would've been then. But no, for some God only knows reason, I'm bound to this length of decaying planks yelling after a boat. Oh, oh, and as if that isn't enough! No, I get all the blame for all the stupid children that slip off the dock in shock after they see me and drown."
"You've never pushed anyone?" Dean asked.
Charlotte pointed into the distance, aggravation clear on her face. "I spend my afterlife chasing a damn boat I can never catch. When do I have time to stop and push someone off a dock? So, please, please, just go burn my bones. You'll be doing me a favor, I promise. I mean, I'm fairly certain my husband moved on long ago. He's not on that boat. And I really hope that, if both my parents and I reach salvation, that I'll be able to tell them what's what for putting me through the Hell that they have."
"So… we dig you up, burn you… and you won't try to stop us?" Sam asked.
"Are you hard of hearing? No. Do it with my blessing!"
Dean shrugged. "All right then. Um… have a nice… re-death?"
She smiled. "Oh, I hope so. Anything's better than being perpetually late. I mean, I spent my entire life being perfectly on time for every event or what have you. The one time I'm late and I'm doomed to repeat it once a year every year. Go, hunters, and let me not chase this stupid boat anymore."
With that, Sam and Dean turned, making their way toward the Impala parked in the general lot. They really didn't say much as they climbed in and made their way toward Charlotte's old home. Finally, as the old manor came into sight, Dean turned to Sam, laughing.
"What is it, Dean?" the younger Winchester asked.
"This has to be some kind of record. I mean… how many times has a killer ghost asked us to kill it? I can't wait to tell Bobby this."
Sam shrugged. "Well, they've always said that weird stuff happens on Halloween. Never really believed it until now."