A.N. So, who's big idea was it to give Hecate the ssssserpentine sssspeech pattern? I never realised how many times I used the letter "S" in my fics, till now! :o
Chick xx


CHAPTER 17

A plea for Sandra

The slow road to awareness was a painful one, and the journey was accompanied by the sounds of a woman's broken sobbing. A groan escaped from his lips before he could reign it in, and the sudden hiccupping break in the female's crying told Dean that the sound had been heard. A firm shove against his ribs which was effective in rolling him off his stomach where he lay and onto his back, served to underline the fact that his return to consciousness had, indeed, been noticed. The lack of any gentleness in bringing about the enforced change in his position drew another moan out of him, and the sound of the voice that responded caused him a momentary surge of frustration and disquiet.

"Let me sssee those pretty eyess of yourss. Look at me, man child!"

Dean stubbornly screwed his eyes closed more tightly.

"Don' wanna. You're fugly."

Two hands, with a grip far more powerful than they had the right to be, given the age of the body they belonged to, grabbed tight hold of the front of Dean's over shirt and forcefully yanked him up into a sitting position, showing no regard at all for his badly bruised back.

"Don't dare toy with me boy! My patiencssse is very limited. Open your eyesss and tell me who...you...are!"

Dean's eyes obediently flickered open, and he found himself staring into the depths of Hecate's glowing red orbs. He blinked heavily and, at the same time, gave the witch a cheeky, half dazed, smile.

"Ok...Parrently, I'm your toy boy."

...

Unfamiliar with the modern day interpretation of Dean's phrase, Hecate smiled without humour.

"Oh, yessss. That you are little man...That you are."

Still clutching firmly onto Dean, the witch glanced back over her shoulder to where Sandra knelt on the floor in a corner of the room, her tear stained face and red puffy eyes having the effect of causing her to look even more like a despairing dormouse.

"Get up off your knees ssslave. Bring me alcohol, and girl? Don't keep me waiting."

Dean watched in silence as Sandra wearily clambered to her feet and half walked, half staggered, out of the room, keeping her eyes averted from her mistress. Sandra's whole body spoke to him of defeat; she looked to have given up. She seemed like a woman who could no longer bring herself to care whether she lived or died. The sight of Sandra's complete domination at the hands of Hecate fuelled Dean's temper, as well as renewing his resolve to try to take down this creature holding onto him, no matter what the cost to himself. Feeling more alert as a result of his increasing anger, Dean turned back to the witch. Gazing up and down at her, he noticed that the thing had changed it's clothing whilst he was out cold. She was now dressed in well cut mint green trousers and a simple white, slash necked, long sleeved, silk top. Dean raised one eyebrow. The incongruity between her outward appearance of a handsome, designer clad woman in her fifties, and the creature which he knew to be inhabiting the body, was not lost on Dean.

"Nice outfit. Though I gotta tell you, I kinda liked the whole singed effect you had going on before. Guess the bullet holes didn't work for you?...Why don't you let Sandra go?"

Hecate contemplated Dean curiously.

"Does the woman matter to you? Does her fate have meaning?"

"What you've done to her matters. She doesn't deserve any of this. She's never been a threat to you. Let her go... You've got me."

"Yesssss. Indeed, so I have."

...

Bizarrely, and very much to his complete disgust, the witch leaned closer in to Dean's face and began to sniff the air immediately around him, scenting him like a dog would. Dean waited, refusing to acknowledge his instinctive desire to pull away. Finally, the thing drew back. Her eyes narrowed as she scrutinised Dean further, as if only now assessing him.

"You have visited my crossroadssss little man...You have experienced Hell! And yet...You live! How is thisss? Tell me! Anssswer me truthfully boy and, maybe, I ssshall let the ssshrew go, as you requesssst. So, again I ask, who...are...you?"

Before Dean could formulate a response, Sandra shuffled quietly back into the room, carrying a circular silver tray on which was stood a full bottle of The Glenlivit single malt whisky, along with two crystal tumblers. She drew to a halt, continuing to keep her eyes averted, and submissively awaited Hecate's next instructions. Hecate didn't bother to even glance towards Sandra, her focus remaining firmly fixed on Dean.

"Put that down on the table over there, then I want all the curtains on thiss floor closing, ssstarting in here. Wassste no time and return to me immediately your tasssk is complete...Immediately. Go now; do as I have ordered."

Almost as though she were in a trance, or under some kind of thrall, Sandra moved off to carry out the duties allocated to her.

...

Without warning, Hecate swiftly adjusted her grip on Dean, clasping him with one hand around the bicep of his left arm. Despite the fact that her hand wasn't close to being large enough to entirely circle the muscle, when Hecate stood, she raised Dean to his feet alongside her with very little show of any effort on her part. Dean gasped as the sudden movement jolted his back. Ignoring the pain she caused him, the witch casually steered Dean across to an armchair situated next to the antique side table on which Sandra had set the whisky and glasses. The sheer physical strength being displayed by the supernatural creature amazed Dean, though he made no comment. With a slight shove, Hecate deposited Dean into the chair. Dean grinned cockily up at the witch.

"Thanks."

Hecate stood, hands on hips and glared down at him.

"I ssshall not asssk again boy, reveal to me your purpossse."

Dean's expression grew serious.

"You'll let the woman go?"

Hecate's smile was nothing short of predatory.

"As you wisssh."

Trying to ignore the growing feeling that he was missing something, something important, Dean nodded.

"Ok...You're right...I made a deal at a crossroads once. I was given one year, and when my time was up, I spent 40 years in Hell. Satisfied? Also, things like you? I've been killing them all my life...I'm a Hunter, and your kind? You're nothin' more than my prey."

Silence hung in the air as Hecate stood, digesting what she had just been told. Dean could tell that whilst her eyes were still on him, it wasn't actually him she was seeing, lost in her own thoughts as she currently was. Sandra silently crept back into the room, and hesitated. She dared to shoot a questioning look across to Dean, who responded with an infinitesimal shake of his head. Uncertain what else to do, Sandra simply stood and, like Dean, she waited...

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A.N. Until next time, to anyone reading, give yourself a big hug from me. My warm thanks to the wonderful group of people who are keeping in touch and by their comments, keeping this going. You know who you are my friends, and I am so grateful to you. As I write this, I'm now six days into my enforced convalescence, and the nightmares? Well...
On the up side, damn near gave my other half heart failure in the early hours as I yelled both of us awake! Only funny over coffee later though.
At the time I was glad he was there, and knew how to calm me down. He, apparently, was just grateful I didn't punch him or anything, which, I confess, I've sometimes done in the past, (and boy, does he usually go on and on about it the next day) : ) Chick xxx