My entry for the spn/btvs fic-a-thon. I got Demona who asked for ~Riley/Dean Action Snark/Sarcasm Near-Death Experience
No real spoilers, this is set near the beginning of SPN season one, and soon after Riley left Sunnydale to rejoin the initiative.
NC15, no warnings. As usual anything you recognise is owned by the tv companies, and i make no claims on them ,nor is any money being made from this.A Good Soldier
Dean moved a little closer to the edge of the woods, wanting to be sure he’d have a clear view of the demon. The shotgun in his hands was a familiar and comforting weight, reminding him of why he was here. He was hunting alone for once; he’d left Sam back at the last town they’d worked, because he’d needed to get away on his own. One too many cracks from his brother about how he was Dad’s good little soldier; had gotten him pissed off enough that he’d come close to pounding his brother into the ground. So he’d figured that a little time apart would do them both some good.
He could hear it getting nearer, a slight rustling in the bushes letting him know that he wasn’t alone. It was huge, bigger than he’d expected, but then he’d not had time to do much in the way of research. All he really needed to know was the best way to take it down, and in this case that would be destroying the heartstone in the demons gut. He figured a couple of exploding rounds should do the job just fine. Levelling the gun, he rested his finger on the trigger and watched, just a few more seconds and it would be in the centre of the clearing.
He waited for the demon to get into position; he just needed it to turn a little more to the right. But before he could make the kill, a bright arc of electricity lit up the night. Crossing the clearing and hitting the demon; causing it to writhe and contort before slumping to the ground. Dean tracked the line of fire and saw a man step out of the shadows. Tall and muscled he was decked out like some refugee from an action movie, covered in black body armour and holding some kind of modified assault rifle.
He moved closer to the demon, nudging the lifeless body with one heavy boot. Satisfied that it was down for the count, he slung the rifle over his shoulder and pushed an expensive looking set of night-vision goggles away from his eyes. One hand going to a radio clipped to his vest. “It’s Finn, I got it. No I don’t need back-up, single shot was all it took. I’ll wait on the clean-up team and then head back…….” He continued talking to whoever was on the other end of the radio, but Dean tuned it out.
His eyes were firmly fixed on the demon, and he could see that it was starting to recover, the tazer may have put it down, but it hadn’t finished the job. Just for a second Dean considered doing nothing, wanting to see if the Rambo wannabee would even notice that his prey was still alive. But that wasn’t his way, curiosity wasn’t a good enough reason to just sit back and let the guy get clawed up.
Abandoning his cover he stepped out into the light, but he nearly wasn’t quick enough. The demon was already moving, surging to its feet faster than Dean would have thought possible, deadly claws aiming for the man’s unprotected back. The first shot hit it high in the shoulder, spinning it round to face Dean. The second hit true, blowing a hole the size of a fist in the creature’s gut. This time it wouldn’t be getting up. Stepping closer, he watched as the man whirled around, a look of shocked horror on his face as he realised how close he’d come to dying. Dean just let the shotgun rest across his arms, and stood silently, waiting to see how the man would react.
“No, there’s nothing wrong. I’ll be back as soon as I can.” Riley let the radio slip from his hand, and stared at the demon. He could feel air blowing across his back and realised that it had caught his vest with its claws on its way down. He couldn’t quite bring himself to look at his saviour, so he kept his eyes on the monster that had come so close to killing him. Tonight was his first solo mission, and he’d been so damned happy to get back out into the field. After everything that had gone down in Sunnydale, he’d worked hard to get them to trust him again, and he’d thought he’d finally proved himself.
Forcing his eyes up, he tried to think what he was going to do. Not only had he failed to kill the hostile, but he’d managed to expose himself to a civilian, again
. He should have spotted him, should have checked the area more thoroughly. But he’d been so focused on proving that he could still do this, that he’d rushed things; and now he’d have to pay the price. He just needed a minute, had to have a little time to figure out how to handle this.
“Well I’m not exactly expecting you to fling yourself at my feet in gratitude; but a thank you’d be good.”
Well it looked like he wasn’t getting that time, and he had no clue how to deal with this. “You killed it. How in the hell did you know how to do that?”
“It’s a Treynaw, only way is to destroy the heartstone. And demons aren’t human, hearts aren’t always where you think they’d be. Better question, what were you doing out here hunting this thing if you don’t know how to kill it?”
“I thought I did, the classification manual said that a blast would stop it’s heart.” Riley was too busy defending himself to worry about letting out more classified information.
“Manual? I’ve never seen a manual that listed demons, but then I never saw a hunter quite like you either.”
“Yeah well you’re not exactly par for the course either. Wrong sex for a start.”
Before Dean could decide how to answer that one, they both heard a vehicle approaching the clearing. “Your clean-up crew?” At Riley’s nod Dean continued, “Well I’ll be going then, wouldn’t want to get in your way, and I’ve got the rest of the pack to see to.”
He made it as far as the edge of the woods before Riley caught up with him, grabbing him by the arm. “You’re going after the rest of the pack?”
“Well it’s not like I’m going to let them run loose. You really didn’t know a thing about it did you? Treynaw live in packs, the Alpha gets food, while the others stay in the nest. But if they get hungry enough then all bets are off, once that happens, they’ll spread out, and then all hell will break loose. Imagine a dozen or more of those things running round town looking for prey.”
Dean stared back into the clearing, looking at the men gathering round the demon’s corpse. More uniforms, and the way they were moving as a unit just screamed military. He’d never imagined that anyone official; knew about demons. But if he was reading things right, then it looked like he’d stumbled into the middle of some kind of military operation. And he’d no intention of sticking around, and maybe ending up in some kind of government file.
“We knew about the nest, another team is dealing with it. We don’t need some amateur getting in the way.”
“Amateur?” Dean used Riley’s free arm to spin them around, trapping the other man against a tree. “You think fancy weapons and a uniform make you a pro, you didn’t even know how to make the kill. If anyone’s an amateur around here it isn’t me. And if they’re going by the same crappy research as you, they’re likely to get turned into dinner. Fucking idiots, you think having authority makes you an expert. What the hell is the military doing involved in this anyway?”
The fact that the rest of the unit had been seen, meant that Riley should be arresting the man on the spot. Some things might have changed since Sunnydale, but one thing remained the same. Under no circumstances was the Initiative to be exposed to civilians; anyone who did see something they shouldn’t, had a habit of disappearing. Riley had no intention of turning the man over, but had to warn his men, so he wrenched one arm free, and grabbed his radio, “Base, this is Finn, no everything’s still fine. But the intel on the hostile was faulty, the shock didn’t kill it. I had to destroy the heart. Yes located in the gut Sir. Lucky guess, I’ll be sure to write it up when I get back.”
“Lucky guess? They really going to buy that?”
“You’d rather I told them that someone else did it? Maybe have you come in and talk to them?”
“You think you could take me in?”
“Damn right.” Much as he’d like to think he could do just that, if he wanted to, Riley knew it wasn’t an option. Better for everyone, if this whole incident just disappeared. But he was damned if he was going to give up without at least a token fight. Twisting his other arm free, he did his best to get loose. But he accomplished nothing more than grinding his body against the other man’s. And he was shocked as hell, when he heard him chuckle against his ear.
“You know I usually at least get a name before I get this up close and personal.” There was no way Dean was going to let himself be taken without one hell of a fight. He’d seen a hint of surprised arousal flash across the man’s face, when their bodies had ground together, and knew that was his way in. It wouldn’t be the first time he’d used his looks to get what he needed, and flirting with this guy wouldn’t exactly be a hardship. Under other circumstances he’d be just Dean’s type.
Shock gave Riley the strength he’d been looking for, and after a few seconds of struggle he managed to reverse their position. He wound up with both of Dean’s wrists gripped tight in one hand, and he used the other to toss the gun out of reach. “Enough, unless you forgot, there’s a whole bunch of people I can call down here as back-up. And if they see you, they’ll arrest you on the spot. So if you don’t want to spend the next few years in a cell, I suggest you let me figure out a way to get us out of here.”
“So why aren’t you doing just that? I mean why would you want to help me get away, isn’t the military all about following orders?”
“You saved my life, call me old fashioned, but I’m not about to arrest somebody for doing that.”
“An old fashioned soldier boy with a sense of honour. Are you sure that’s the only reason you don’t want to let me go?” Dean smiled a little as he saw the look of confusion on his companion’s face. Switching tactics seemed to be the best way to get this guy off guard.
“What do you mean?” One look at the smirk on the man’s face told Riley that he really didn’t want to know. “Never mind, just get ready to move when I say.”
“Well if we’re going to be working together, I guess I should introduce myself. The name’s Dean, I’d shake hands, but you’ll have to let me go to do that.”
“We’re not working together, I’m going to figure out a way for you to leave without being noticed, and then I’m going to go back to base and try to forget this night ever happened.”
“Well if you wanted me to leave, you should have said so. My car’s just the other side of the woods; should be easy enough to get back there without your buddies seeing me.”
“I don’t need a babysitter, though if you just wanted to spend a little quality time you should have said so.” Dean pushed against Riley’s grip, and let him feel exactly how turned on, the proximity was making him.
“Christ do you ever stop?” When Dean made to speak, Riley just clamped his free hand over the open mouth, doing his best to ignore the feel of a tongue tracing across his palm. “Just don’t. Fuck, it’s like dealing with the male version of Faith.”
Riley released Dean’s hands and quickly stepped back out of reach. Hearing the clean-up unit’s van pull away, he decided that now was as good a time as any to get moving. “Let’s go.”
“Anything you say soldier boy, just tell me where you want me.”
“Out of my hair would be a good start, and could you stop calling me that?”
“Well it’s a little early in the relationship for pet names, but if you’ve got something special in mind?” This time Dean was thrilled to see he’d actually managed to make the man blush.
“Riley, just call me Riley.”
“Well okay Riley, what say you tell me all about yourself? After all it’s going to be a long walk. And you’re going the wrong way.” Dean pushed past Riley, and headed off in the opposite direction, pinching his ass as he went by.
“What the hell?” Riley resisted the urge to demand Dean stop, and just hurried to catch up, he had a feeling this was going to be a very long night.
Three hours later, Dean tossed the Initiative ID into his glove box, and pulled out onto the highway. He felt a little guilty about ditching an unconscious Riley in the woods, but he’d made sure some of his people were close by, and knew he’d be found quickly. In the end, cute as the guy was, he belonged to an organisation Dean couldn’t trust, and he hadn’t wanted to risk Riley being able to identify the Impala. It was a shame he hadn’t been able to make good on all his teasing and flirting, but sticking around just to get in Riley’s pants, was too risky.
He’d managed to get quite a bit of information out of his soldier as they’d walked. The more Dean had flirted, the more flustered Riley had become, and it turned out that a flustered Riley had a tendency to babble. The man had some pretty amazing tales to tell. He’d seen and done things that were impressive even by Dean’s standards, some of those stories about the Slayers would be haunting his dreams for weeks. One thing he knew for sure, he and Sam wouldn’t be going anywhere near Sunnydale, that was a town that sounded too weird even for them.
One thing puzzled him, Riley had been painfully honest about the old Initiative, and everything that had gone wrong back then; and Dean just couldn’t figure out why Riley would be willing to go back. He got that Riley had needed to get away from Sunnydale, but why had he signed up again? If he wanted to hunt, he could just go out there and do it; why had he willingly gone back to a place where he was so hemmed in by rules and regulations? The soldier had talked about back-up and support, about being part of a team, and about how the work was important. And that was the bit Dean truly didn’t get, Riley talked about what he did, like it was just a job. Like he could walk away from it and do something else if he wanted to, and that was something Dean could never do. To him this isn’t something he does; it’s something he is.
In a couple of hours he’ll be back at the motel where he left his brother, and he knows Sam will have spent the time researching, and will probably already have the next job lined up. He’ll have to put up with a certain amount of bitchiness for a few days, as Sam’s undoubtedly still going to be pissed that Dean took off without him. And he’s pretty sure that Sam still won’t have figured out what he’d said to make Dean that angry.
It amazes him sometimes; that for all his smarts Sammy can’t read him at all. For his brother this whole thing is about the end game, every demon they take out just brings them one step closer to his revenge. One step nearer to The Demon, and that’s enough for him. Dean gets that, knows that for Sam this is a means to an end, but Sam never really questions why Dean carries on. Part of it is about his family, as long as they need him, he’ll be there to back them up. But deep down Dean knows that isn’t the only reason he goes out in the dark, night after bloody night.
He doesn’t have some sacred mission, not like Sam or John; he isn’t wired that way. Despite what Sam thinks, he isn’t a soldier. He’s not like Riley; with his uniform and his procedures and his control. He’s a Hunter with a capital H, and he loves his life. The hunt itself, the chase; that thrill he gets when he pits himself against something stronger, faster, deadlier; and comes out the other side alive. He knows it isn’t exactly healthy, but he’s long since come to terms with who and what he is. He knows that long after the demon is dead, when Sam has gone back to his normal life and John has found some place to settle down; he’ll still be fighting. Still putting miles on the Impala, still helping those who can’t help themselves; still looking to prove himself against the demons. He isn't a soldier, he's a a Hunter, now and forever; and he wouldn’t have it any other way.Fin