Chapter Twenty-Three: Give The Guy Some Candy
Sam leaned against the wall outside the Espresso Pump reading a worn paperback print of Don Quixote. The street crowd was comprised of couples on dates. Young men and women strolled hand in hand along the sidewalk, spilling out of the Sun Cinema and the adjacent restaurants.
Dean swept out the door of the Espresso Pump with a Styrofoam cup in one hand and a napkin in the other. He whistled and smirked as he looked through the window.
“Dude, I just went in there for coffee and I got some Candy too.”
Sam spied through the window to see a young brunette girl lounging at a table. As she leaned over, Sam got a view of her large breasts tucked inside her tight top. She noticed Dean and the two exchanged flirtatious smiles. Sam rolled his eyes. Dean pocketed the napkin.
“She looks a little young for you.”
Dean scoffed, “Dude, I’m not a fifty year old man looking at little girls. Besides, she’s eighteen and those are hardly little.”
His eyes twinkled with suggestion. Sam shook his head.
“So age difference isn’t a factor anymore?”
Dean narrowed his eyes, “What are you getting at? Are you trying to spoil my good mood?”
Sam sighed. “Forget it. Are we ever going over to Buffy’s house?”
Dean shrugged as he watched a group of college aged girls pass by. A girl with jet black hair and violet eyes smiled coyly at him. He turned his head and caught a glance of her until she disappeared around the corner.
Dean snapped his eyes to his brother. “What? Oh. You want to go to your best girl friend’s house, fine. Go on then.”
“What is up with you? You’ve been in a bad mood ever since we got here.”
Sam noticed as Dean looked around downtown.
“What’s going on?”
Dean took a long sip of his coffee and swept his eyes around.
“If you haven’t noticed, every time we stop into this town, some crazy crap has happened. Angel’s back and Faith killed a guy. I get a monster headache every time I’m here and somehow I get stuck in the middle of all of it. Is it so much to ask that for once, I can just relax and have a little fun? No ex-demon lover intervention, no apocalypse scenario, no –“
“Blonde Slayer to drive you crazy?”
Sam drew a half grin over his face.
Dean huffed, “Shut up.”
“That’s an original comeback.”
Dean frowned. “I still owe you a beat down for that little no Christmas gifts stunt you pulled.”
“Are you still sore about that? You should be glad I did it. Buffy is always talking about how cool your gift was and how she uses it all the time on patrol.”
Sam noticed his brother’s expression soften.
Sam chuckled. “Yeah, she says a lot of other stuff about you…interested?”
Dean jeered, “No. What do I care what that girl thinks or does?”
“Oh. So it doesn’t bother you that she and Angel are kissing in public?”
Dean studied Sam, who was looking off in the distance. He swung his eyes over to the Sun Cinema to see Buffy and Angel in a lip lock. He rolled his eyes.
“Oh Jesus. She’s back to her old habits huh? Let’s get the hell out of this place. I do not want to get into another battle to the death. I’d rather - eat Candy.”
He smirked as his eyes danced. Sam groaned.
“Oh come on Sam. I helped stop an apocalypse, I deserve a little Candy – wait – more like a big piece of Candy.”
Sam groaned again, “Okay. Stop with the innuendos.”
“Sam? Dean? When did you guys get here?”
Buffy and Faith were a few feet away and regarded them with curious eyes.
“We’ve been here for awhile,” Sam replied. “Just hanging out.”
“Oh. Why didn’t you call?”
Dean looked off, “We saw that you and Angel were – busy.”
“You saw me?”
Dean and Faith met eyes. “They let you back on patrol?”
Faith nodded. Dean emptied his coffee cup and chucked it in a trash can.
“You want to join us?” Buffy asked.
Buffy and Sam both eyed Dean.
“Uh, okay. I guess I’ll see you back at the house?”
“Maybe….I have an enormous craving for some Candy so…it might take awhile to – eat it.”
Dean stepped off the curb and paused.
“You coming Sam?”
Sam sighed and glanced at Buffy. “I’ll see you later.”
He reached out and squeezed her hand as he caught up with Dean. Buffy frowned, completely perplexed.
Buffy strolled through the graveyard, lost in thought.
“What’s your deal B? I feel like I’m patrolling alone here.”
Buffy shook herself from her daze.
“Sorry, I was just….that was weird, wasn’t it?”
“Dean passing on the chance to hunt? He’s never done that before. He’s always up for a hunt. It’s not like him.”
Faith shrugged, “I wouldn’t know.”
Buffy bit her lip. “I thought maybe you would.”
Faith stopped abruptly and glanced at Buffy. “Why would I? I don’t have heartfelt conversations with guys – that’s your department. You know my deal – take some, take a hike.”
Buffy masked her apprehension, “I just thought…well, you and Dean went hunting together a couple of months ago….I thought you would have gotten to know him.”
Faith replied casually, “Not really.”
Buffy stamped back the frown she felt creeping over her face. What other way did Faith get to know him?
“Oh. What did you talk about?”
Faith looked at her, tried to figure her out. “It was your basic shop talk. Why are you grilling me about something that happened months ago?”
Buffy gulped. “Uh, I was just curious. Dean isn’t really forthcoming about aspects of his life that don’t involve demon hunting.”
Faith frowned, “Why should he? You don’t own him. Even if you banged him, you wouldn’t own him.”
The two Slayers exchanged intrusive looks as a figure lurked in the shadows.
Buffy returned home to find John having coffee with her mom in the kitchen. Sam was sprawled out in the living room, reading his book. She glanced at the clock. It was almost ten-thirty. She propped herself on the couch beside Sam.
“So Sam, what is going on with your brother? He opted out on hunting. That’s weird.”
“Yeah, I know.”
“Is he mad at me? What did I do now?”
Sam gave her a straightforward look, “Think about it.”
“That would be my guess.”
“Well, I called to warn you that Angel was back. I’m assuming he didn’t take the news well?”
“He hit the roof when I told him. I’m talking literally hit the roof.”
Buffy slumped down on the cushion. Sam drew a sympathetic smile.
“He’s just worried about you.”
She frowned, “No, he’s worried I’m going to act like an idiot and make Angel evil again. Well, he’s wrong to worry.”
“So you decided to prove him wrong by – kissing Angel.”
Sam gave her an amused grin. Buffy sighed, embarrassed by her attempt to fool her lifelong friend.
“Okay, so I kissed Angel. I’m seeing Angel but – nothing is going to happen. There can never be more. I know that. But things between us – it’s complicated…and I’m trying to deal with it but it’s just – hard.”
“You don’t have to plead your case with me Buffy. We can’t control who we fall in love with and we can’t just shut off our feelings. He just wants you to be careful.”
Buffy eyed the bowl of popcorn on the coffee table. She dug out a handful and popped some in her mouth.
“If he cares about me, why did he give me the brush off?”
Sam drew out a long breath. “Put yourself in his shoes. He went into battle with you to fight Angel when he was evil and almost died. Now Angel is back and you’re sweet on him again. My brother is having a little trouble dealing with that. He may not say it but I can see it.”
“I see your point.”
She leaned her head against Sam’s shoulder.
“Did he ever come clean about Faith?”
“I tend to tune him out when he brags about his conquests.”
“I tried to get the scoop from Faith tonight but she got defensive.”
She raised her head and looked at Sam.
“Sam, honestly, what does your gut tell you? Do you think your brother and Faith…”
Sam sighed. “Well, let’s see – Faith is young, attractive, a little on the wild side and fights demons….and my brother has a roving eye for young, attractive girls, so, as you would say, do the math.”
She lightly punched him in the arm. “Don’t use my shtick against me.”
Buffy pouted as she eyed the clock.
“What was all that about a candy craving? My mom’s got a stash of Snickers in the cabinet. He could have eaten those.”
Sam cleared his throat. “Uh, he didn’t mean candy in the uh…traditional sense.”
Buffy noticed Sam’s cheeks turning red and picked up on what he was hinting at. “Oh. Well why would it take all night to eat…”
Her words trailed off as she gasped in horror, suddenly getting it.
“Sometimes, I really hate your brother.”
Sam chuckled. “I know the feeling.”
Sam sighed as he checked his watch. He leaned against the wall outside Willy’s Bar. After a few minutes, he spotted his brother ambling slowly down the sidewalk, looking fatigued.
“You missed the meeting at the library.”
“I didn’t miss it, I skipped it. I didn’t get much sleep last night from my - sugar rush.”
A wide smirk creased Dean’s face as he got lost in his memory. Sam groaned.
“I do not want to hear about it.”
Dean drifted back to the present.
“Want to tell me why we’re at a bar? You didn’t suddenly grow a rebellious gene, did you?”
Sam flashed a disapproving look. “Didn’t you read my note?”
Dean let out a big yawn. “I skimmed it. I thought you were being a smart ass using the biggest words as possible. So what am I doing here?”
“You need to get some information out of the bartender, Willy. Buffy needs help finding the location of a demon that tried to sell her the books of ascension.”
Sam watched his brother’s face set into a hard scowl.
“You got to be kidding me. What kind of crap are you getting me involved in? Why did you volunteer me? I should kick your ass,” he growled.
“Well, try playing the bad cop bit on Willy. Word is he’s easily intimidated by a fist – or a fistful of dollars. That’s all you have to do.’
Dean blinked. “That’s all you signed me up for? Beating the crap out of a guy?”
Sam nodded, “That’s it.”
“Okay. Bring me up to speed.”
Sam spent a couple of minutes going over the details and the possible involvement of the Mayor. Dean steadied himself against the wall.
“A demon wants five grand for some books? Geez, whatever happened to just kidnapping a loved one? Is he to good for extortion? And the Mayor, well….he’s just promoting the stereotype that politicians are evil…get a better disguise man…”
Sam waited expectantly.
“Alright, let me beat this guy up for some information…..and a couple of free drinks while I’m at it.”