Disclaimer: I do not own 'Supernatural' or 'The Wizard of Oz'. They belong to their owners, don't sue me.
Note: Nick was the Tin Man's human name in the books and his story was pretty horrific.
"If your last name is really 'Baum', where did the 'Gale' come from," Charlie asked as she and Dorothy sat talking in her room.
Dorothy laughed, "'Gail' is my middle name. I was born during a blizzard and my father said that the moment I was born, a really strong gust of wind hit the house."
Charlie laughed, "What about Auntie Em and Uncle Henry?"
Dorothy sighed sadly, "Aunt Emily was my mother's older sister and she never approved of my mother marrying my father. Anyone who wasn't a good, solid, farmer was a worthless dreamer as far as she was concerned. After my mother died, my father basically buried himself in his work and I lived with them because my father was away so much. The last time I saw them was the night before I left for Oz with my father." She frowned, "I wonder what happened to them. Aunt Emily and I were really close, I had planned to go see them after we'd dispatched the Witch. I was afraid to go back before then because I was worried the Witch would harm them just to get to me."
Charlie smiled, "We can search the town archives and find out and find out where they're buried, if you want, so you can pay your respects before we go back."
Dorothy smiled, "I'd like that."
********The Next Day*********
The car was silent as Charlie pulled away from the Lebanon town archives. For once in her life, she couldn't think of anything to say that would ease the pain and guilt she could feel coming from the silent figure next to her.
They'd found out what had happened to Dorothy's aunt and uncle all right, but the truth had been heartbreaking. They had died the day she left, caught in a tornado that had destroyed their farm. The newspaper had quoted one of their surviving neighbors, who'd said that they'd been searching for their niece, who'd run away from home. The pictures of the scene, even in grainy black and white, had been horrifying to look at. The images of the destroyed farmhouse and the mangled bodies of Dorothy's aunt, uncle and the three hired hands, who'd been helping them search, would stay with Charlie for a long time.
"I should've left a note," Dorothy whispered, wringing her hands. "I was so determined to go, I was afraid Aunt Emily would stop me, so I snuck out before even Uncle Henry was up to make sure no one saw me."
"You didn't know," Charlie said, trying to be reassuring. "Tornados are freaks of nature. There's no way you could've predicted that one would strike the day you left."
"But I could've left them a note, so they would know not to look for me!" Dorothy said, tears in her eyes. "If I'd just left a note, they wouldn't have been out there looking for me and they could've gotten to the cellar in time!" She angrily brushed away her tears. "Aunt Emily, Uncle Henry, Hecky, Jack, and Red, all dead because of me. Because I was in too big of a hurry to leave a note."
Charlie couldn't think of anything to say, finally they pulled into the cemetery where the newspaper said Dorothy's aunt and uncle were buried.
It took some time, but they were finally able to locate the graves. Apparently, the town had taken up a collection to make sure they could have decent burials.
Dorothy fell to her knees in front of the graves, tears streaming down her cheeks, "Aunt Emily, Uncle Henry, it's me, Dorothy." She reached out and reverently touched the names. "I'm so sorry! I should've told you, but I was afraid you'd try to stop me. I just wanted to see what kept Father away so much."
Charlie watched from a distance, she knew how it felt to blame yourself for something you couldn't help. She walked over and knelt beside Dorothy, wrapping her arms around her, letting her sob into her shoulder.
They sat there for a long time before either of them felt composed enough to move. The drive back to the bunker was silent and neither of them felt like explaining things to the boys when they got back. Thankfully, both Sam and Dean seem to get the message and except for dinner, left outside the door with a gentle knock, they left them alone.
The two women lay curled together on the bed talking all night. Charlie told Dorothy about losing her parents and surviving on her own, Dorothy told Charlie all about Oz and the wonderful people she'd met there, people that she desperately wanted to help. She talked about her three friends and how much she missed them and about taking Nick's head with her to remind her of what she was fighting for, and her desire to find Toto.
When the boys finally came to check on them, they found them cuddled together. The picked up the plates and threw a blanket over them and left the two women to find comfort in each other and the dreams of their new adventure.