A huge thank you to all my readers and reviewers, you guys rock because you're the ones that keep me writing.
Brief FYI, I'll probably be taking my work off TTH and if I do- all my stories will move to my livejournal and the WIP's will be updated there.
When Adam wakes up, it’s to the sight of his brothers arguing like two great big girls in the corner of some darkly cluttered room and the most beautiful girl he’s ever seen looming over him. She has waist length dark hair held back by one of those clip thingies and her eyes are really
“Hey,” she smiles at him, leaning over and checking his temperature with the back of her hand in a gesture that makes Adam’s heart pang for his mom, “how do you feel?”
There are a couple of things that Adam realizes at this moment. One, is that Bonehead One and Bonehead two have stopped their argument and are now concernedly hovering in the background, trying to blend into the scenery despite being like a gajillion feet tall. Two is that the girl, the one whose cleavage is bobbing so appealingly in front of Adam’s face, smells really
good, while Adam himself smells like he’s been dead for a couple of weeks, which is sort of true. And three, Zachariah must be looking for him.
“Fine,” Adam coughs out, because the girl’s looking more and more worried by his silence and the more gigantic of his brothers is looming ever closer despite the fact that Adam will probably have to clean up his mess now, and his ribs hurt. Wait a second, his ribs hurt? That must be Castiel's doing, those sigils that Zachariah had told him about, the ones that are hiding Dean and Sam. “I’m fine.”
He suspects that he looks like shit and he feels even worse but the girl’s smile doesn’t grow dimmer as Adam tries to hack his lungs up, stroking soothing circles on his back with a dainty hand.
Sam makes this concerned face that looks like the dude is sucking on lemons, worried and hesitant as he sidles closer to Adam with a glass of water. “Hey man,” he murmurs and offers the liquid, bangs way past the stage of inappropriate and bordering on the ridiculous, “here.”
Adam knows he’s a brat, knows that he should take the water and drink it down before he hacks up a nice juicy organ and some errant angel has to revive him yet again
, but the deeply stubborn and angry part of him that wants to spit in Sam’s eye for being the reason that Adam’s out of heaven- well, that part is currently very active. That part’s controlling Adam’s body, stopping his movements.
“Sam,” the brunette gestures for the water, shooting his brother a mild glare when he huffs. She’s the one that finally offers it to Adam, and it may be the most childish thing he’s ever done- ignoring his brother’s offer of help, but drinking water from the most beautiful girl he’s ever seen, feeling the liquid slide down and soothe his raw throat- Adam’s halfway to being in love with her just for her glare alone.
“Thanks,” he wipes his lips, struggling to sit up and it’s her that helps him again. Up close, he can differentiate the different smells of her, the layers of clean skin, something spicy and salty underneath it all. It’s mildly mortifying but Adam has to shift from making a fool of himself, from burying his face in her long hair and inhaling deep, deep and closing his eyes.
“No worries,” she smiles at him and her lips look like ripe cherries in the early morning light.
God. Adam’s so truly boned. He has a mission, an angelic
mission to save the world and here he is- floundering because a pretty girl’s being nice to him. Sometimes, being a nineteen year old dude sucks major ass.
Dean coughs, a sharply amused sound that’s nevertheless tinged with worry and something akin to relief. “Adam?... What happened?”
“Well,” Adam swivels his head to face his oldest sibling, thankful for the brief reprieve from insanity, “I got eaten
and now I’m back.” He makes sure to inject as much sarcasm into the words as he can, sneering with all the remembered scorn of his teenage years “Apparently that can take a lot out of somebody.”
The girl laughs at him, loud and exuberant, she almost doubles over at the look of pissy outrage on his face. Adam knows this is pissy outrage because, loath as he is to admit this, he’s seen this expression on Sam’s face a million times before. Hell, even Dean wears the emotion, though much more gruffly than his younger siblings. Could it be genetic?
Adam tries not to think of John Winchester wearing the same huffily pissed off face lest the world implodes from the visual insanity.
“I like you,” the girl decides with a grin as her laughter finally tapers down. “I’m Dawn,” she offers her hand, beaming as Adam shakes it somewhat dazedly.
“Oh good lord,” Dean groans and steps forward, already pissed but somewhat bemused as he glares down at Adam and Dawn, “can you two separate for the teen-love fest? We sort of have an apocalypse to prevent.” He arches an eyebrow, looking moody and mildly threatening and Adam prepares to launch into a whole big rant on why his brothers are douchebags that are going to end the world, when Dawn stands up.
“You idiots need to bond,” she announces brightly and moves off into the hallway, slipping on a pair of sneakers, “I’m going to make sure that my friends don’t murder each other.” She turns and gives Adam a jaunty wink, “You rest up, kay? It’s always a little stressful, coming back from the dead.”
“Adam,” he says loudly, because he’s nineteen, and she’s really pretty and he’s probably going to die soon anyway, “my name is Adam.”
The grin, incandescent and absolutely gorgeous
on her face is worth the glare from Dean and the bitchface from Sam.
“I’ll see you soon, Adam,” Dawn grins and bounces out of the house, hair swinging swishily behind her.
She has a really nice ass, Adam thinks right before Sam and Dean start in on him with the Winchester platitudes and the whole ‘brotherhood’ thing they’ve got going.
It doesn’t matter. None of it does. Because as soon as he falls asleep, he’s telling Zachariah where to find him and then Adam will finish the thing that his family started.
Bobby steps outside after the youngest of his visitors joins the two in the yard already. His fingers twitch at his side, wanting some sort of weapon to hold in reassurance, wanting a bottle, anything really to smooth out the edges of the sharp fear and discord he’s feeling.
This isn’t a hunt, this isn’t even a prolonged venture into the darkness that he’s been fighting for the last thirty five years. This is much, much worse. This is the end, really, and Bobby knows that. He realizes it. But watching the two women sparring in his yard, this really brings home the feeling of ‘not quite right’.
He wouldn’t have let them in, except Dean’s imploring gaze and Sam’s softly uttered pleas of ‘allies they couldn’t stand to lose’ were too much and Bobby was really a soft sell when it came to the Winchesters. Plus, Gabriel had casually threatened a good smiting if Bobby’s ‘grizzled ass didn’t let go of the shotgun’ and that was that.
They’re not human. They can’t be, with the way that they move and their eyes as they watch each other in between attacks so fast that they leave Bobby dizzy with blurry vision and white knuckled fists.
Bobby’s seen brutality, he’s seen pain and death and fighting more than anyone ever should.
The way these women, girls really, are fighting is so very different than what he’s used to, it takes his breath away.
Their fists fly through the air with too much grace, speed and very little lack of hesitancy. They look beautiful when they fight, though much less human than when they don’t and Bobby shudders to think what one of their hits would do to a normal hunter.
The door opens quietly and Castiel steps out, mindful of teleporting in a house full of jumpy hunters. At least he’s
been there from the beginning, Bobby thinks with some rancor, unlike a certain archangel currently holed up in the kitchen with a bag of marshmallows and a jar of peanut butter.
“Are you alright Robert?” Castiel’s voice is still the same gravelly baritone that Bobby most strongly associates with dire warnings of doom.
Bobby scratches under his trucker hat, a vague mental picture has popped of Castiel asking him for a beer and him having a big old freakout because of the angel’s tone. He shakes his head to clear the insanity and glances at Castiel.
“What do you mean?”
Castiel’s eyes are blue and fathomless and Bobby will shoot himself in the foot before saying that out loud but he squints and stares and watches the angel look at him.
“Your thoughts, Robert. I could hear them from inside
,” Castiel says in this mildly chastising voice like Bobby’s thinking had torn him away from some great and immediate adventure.
Bobby has a sudden and terrifying mental picture of Castiel gallivanting around with his trenchcoat flopping in the breeze.
Bobby averts his eyes from the angel, flushing a dark red as he tries to remember whether he’s eaten anything that Gabriel had offered. Honestly, he wouldn’t put it past the tricky bastard, slipping something into his food.
Gabriel the archangel is supposed to be God’s messenger, a fleetfooted winged herald of the future- at least this is what all the books say. In reality, Gabriel the archangel is a foul-mouthed little shit with an eye raising affinity for sweets, a disturbingly concise imagination and more power in his fingers than anything Bobby has known before.
“Stop reading my goddamn mind,” Bobby growls, keeping a weather eye on Buffy and Faith. That’s another thing. With names like those, it’s more normal to expect a pair of bouncy, perky college girls with high breathy giggles and shiny hair. Instead, they’ve gotten a pair of hellcats crouched on two junkers, skin sweaty with exertion and dangerous eyes.
“You should trust them,” Castiel says mildly, following Bobby’s line of sight with a cocking of his head, bird-like and inquisitive. “They’re here to help.”
Bobby gets that, he does, really. At this moment, he’s grateful for anyone
offering to be an ally but these women put him on edge, make his skin crawl with their too sharp smiles and their dark eyes. Still, he supposes silently, it’s better to have them on Team Free Will rather than on Team Dickheads Anonymous led by the feather brigade.
“You’re a strange man, Robert Singer,” Castiel pronounces firmly with something like kindness lurking underneath the words “but a good one. Your heart is honest and your motives are clear... It is very refreshing.
Bobby stays silent for as long as he can, before turning to the angel and quirking a brow “Thank you?”
The sun is high in the sky, there are three ex-angels in his house, one angel currently cut off from heaven, three of John Winchester’s boys- one of them currently back from the dead and Bobby finally relaxes
The girls, scary and rough with their crazy eyes and shouting encouragement- they’re on the side of good, at least for now. Dawn, laying on the hood of the car and watching her friends fight is even funny. Bobby found himself chuckling quietly, once or twice, at her constant barrage of encouragement and admonitions.
Castiel- he’s been there for them since day one, time and again proving his loyalty even while issuing beat-downs to both allies and enemies.
The Winchesters are there, true, and there’s an unexpected third one back from the dead for the very first time- but that’s okay too. It’s probably in their genes or something, being strange even for monster hunters, dying and coming back and keeping everyone around them on tip toes.
“Why do you trust them?” Bobby finally asks, squinting in the sun’s glare as he watches Castiel. “You knew who they were before
, you knew them when they were like you
. They’ve changed, they’re different now-“ Bobby pauses and nods over at the yard where Faith’s currently yelling a dirty limerick about blondes while Buffy tries to tackle her, “unless they’re not. In which case, just don’t tell me.”
Castiel turns to him then, serious and unwavering with his perpetually rumbled air and insanely messy hair and says “We call each other brother and sister. This you know.”
“Yeah,” Bobby nods slowly, because seriously, all the books say this.
“It is,” Castiel pauses and looks a little unsure, a little lost and Bobby is honestly surprised by the emotions on the angel’s face, “somewhat of an understatement. When we are in our proper form, our real
form, in heaven- our grace intermingles. It combines and overlaps and for some of us, it blends, becomes shades of two angels. When I am back home,” Castiel sounds wistful, “I can share my brothers’ thoughts, their emotions, their history- their everything
He stares at Bobby and the hunter isn’t really sure that it’s him that Castiel sees. Maybe it’s heaven in his mind now, thousands of glowing angels all sharing a part of something intrinsic, right.
“I trust them,” Castiel says with his terribly final and doom filled voice, “because I’ve seen their souls, I’ve shared
their grace. You should too.”
“Dude-“ a voice startles Bobby out of his reverie, jolting him in his seat as he swings around and glares at Faith.
“Nice description, Cas,” she grins at the angel, “and here I thought you didn’t like me.”
Bobby takes a step back, silently and unobtrusively as he tries to figure out the situation clearer.
Faith, sweaty and disheveled is breathing loudly as she stands across from Castiel. There’s something there, something off
between them and Bobby can’t figure out what it is. If he wasn’t sure, then he’d think that she almost looks guilty
But what for?
He checks the yard, looking for the other two of the newcomers since one of them is here. Buffy and Dawn are standing together, about twenty feet away from the porch. Dawn has her hand shading her face against the sun and Buffy’s arms are crossed. It’s almost as if they’re waiting for Castiel and Faith to work out their differences, whatever they may be.
“Raguel,” Castiel murmurs and steps forward, crowding into Faith’s personal space like Bobby’s seen him do with Dean a thousand times. “No matter what has happened in our past, no matter what will happen in our futures-“ Castiel bends his head low and stares, unblinkingly into Faith’s face, “I will always
know who you are. I will always know your soul. There is nothing to like or dislike, you are a part of me, just like I am a part of you.”
And of course, this being the soap opera that it is, Dean chooses that moment to step out of the house followed by the two littler Winchesters. The door slams open from the force of Dean’s push and Bobby rolls his eyes, because of course
, it’s not bad enough to be in the middle of an apocalypse. He also has to be sharing a house with a bunch of pansies.
“Am I interrupting anything?” Dean growls at Castiel who looks as serene as ever and Faith who has the decency to look halfway twitchy about the fact that there’s about an inch of space separating the two of them.
Sam steps out after Dean, looking hurt and betrayed by these new developments, like a giant puppy of doom who’s just had his toy taken away. “What’s going on?” he ventures carefully.
“Oh for Gaia’s sake,” Buffy groans, stalking past the assorted people on Bobby’s porch, “everything's fine, just get inside. It’s like freaking Dawson’s Creek around here.” She shoots Faith a mild glare of reproach before bouncing into the house.
Bobby likes her, he decides, she has spunk along with a left hook that he never wants to be on the receiving edge of. He’s also deeply amused to see Dean’s eyes following her ass as she walks past him. It’s like they’ve reverted to teenagers here.
Faith coughs and when everybody else’s attention turns back to her, she shoots them her best leer and pronounces “I’m going to go and try to fight B for the shower.”
She pauses in the middle of sidling past Sam’s wounded frame and shoots him a sultry look, “Maybe, I’ll even join
her in the shower.”
There’s a long and terrible silence where Bobby’s sure that all the males in his house are currently occupied with picturing the two very beautiful girls sharing a hot, steamy shower. Hell, even Bobby- who’s old enough to be the father of everyone here, can’t help it when a mental picture of them sneaks into his mind.
He’s only human.
So he’s not terribly surprised when Dean gives the most unconvincing cough of all time and says off-handedly “I’m just going to make sure that they can find the towels…” like he’s not about to go and try to make a fool out of himself. The boy almost trips over his feet in his haste to run upstairs.
The littlest Winchester chooses that moment to speak up from where he’s been hovering behind Sam’s shoulder.
“Dude, aren’t all angels like brothers and sisters?”
Dawn shoots him a grin as she walks to the doorway where he’s idling, “We’re not actually
related. There’s just no Enochian to English translation for what we call each other in our language, so we have to make do with the word ‘brother’.”
Adam flushes a dark red as Dawn steps past him, blushing right down to the roots of his hair.
“Well,” Bobby mentions when it’s just him, Sam and Adam left on the porch. “I can see that you’re definitely a Winchester, you’ve got the stubborn genes down pat, including the taste for the most unlikely women, you’ve come back from the dead and you’re just as thick-headed as your two older brothers.” He rolls closer to Adam who regards him with the skittish wariness of one constantly expecting disappointment, “Welcome to the family kid, I’m sure those two,” he nods over at Sam who’s doing a passable job of blending into the environment, “didn’t actually say anything official. Idjits.”
With those words, Bobby shoots Adam one of his rare smiles and rolls past Sam to make sure that the girls don’t kill Dean for trying to get fresh with them, leaving the boys and Castiel to make their way inside when they feel like it.
Bobby, apparently, is now in the business of housing hormonal twenty-somethings in his house and he has one more to prepare for before his place is overflowing with smoldering glances and brooding anti-heroes.
Fucking Chuck, Bobby thinks irately, why couldn’t he have designated some place else as their meeting point?
During lunch, there is more innuendo and flirting going around the table than the poor house has seen in the last twenty years.
Faith consistently flirts with Sam, making sure to intersperse her come-ons with such blatant leers that middle Winchester looks like a bright red tomato by the time gets away.
Buffy and Dean almost come to blows over what to disclose to Adam. Dean, of course, wants to keep his brother as far away from the apocalypse as he can while Buffy keeps bringing up the very valid point that if Adam’s been resurrected for some unknown reason- chances are that he’s already in the thick of things. Their argument deteriorates into a shouting match at one point, with Buffy calling Dean ‘an egotistical bow-legged asshole’ and him resorting to his sixteen year old persona of condescending leers and jeers.
Adam finally snaps and screams at Dean that if his brother wants to keep him safe, the best way to do so is if Adam knows exactly what’s going on.
Surprisingly enough, Sam backs him up on this. Unsurprisingly, Dean takes the unification of his brothers as a form of betrayal.
After it’s settled that as soon as Chuck gets there, they’ll have a general pow-wow with information sharing and cookies- the cookies being Dawn’s idea, things simmer down a bit.
Buffy and Dean still glower at each other though, with the blonde looking more menacing than the big, bad hunter.
Sam tries to huddle in on himself while searching for new information on his laptop and Faith takes off to ‘wind down from the wicked stress’. Bobby doesn’t want to think of ways that she can wind down in the privacy of his own home.
Dawn and Adam volunteer for dish-washing duty and spend the whole time shooting curiously mooning looks at each other. They both blush whenever their eyes meet over the sudsy sink and Bobby shakes his head at the sight of their bodies touching intermittently. A hand there, a hip bump here. It’s all very Disney and very disturbing, especially during these times.
Bobby really needs more alcohol for this.
Adam has a beer in his hands as he sits on the back porch of Bobby’s house. His hands are remarkably clean, for having clawed him out of his grave a mere six hours previously. The world is ending, a little underage drinking and brooding is probably not going to show up on anyone’s radar. The sun is setting, slowly descending behind the South Dakota hills in a fiery blaze that burns Adam’s retinas even at five in the afternoon.
He’s probably a little sensitive from being dead though.
Adam takes a sip and tries to figure out what to do with all the information that he’s learned today. Its like a puzzle and he just has to figure out where he really fits.
He’s so tired though, exhausted really and yet Adam can’t risk falling asleep yet. Zachariah will be there, guaranteed to show up to keep an eye on his investment.
Adam isn’t really sure how he feels about that anymore.
He came back from Heaven with the surety that he was doing the right thing. That this was the only way to save the world, that there was a reason why he
was getting tapped for this mission. That Dean was wrong for saying no. Except, Adam’s not that sure anymore.
The screen door opens, footsteps stepping closer to him, light and sure and Adam’s heart drops at the thought that it’s Dawn coming out to see him.
Ugh. He really is a girl.
It’s so stupid, he knows
that she’d never be interested in him. He heard her talk at lunch, discussing strategies with Cas and joking around about some obscure Enochian translation with Gabriel. She’s smart, like really
smart as well as beautiful. And Adam?
Adam’s just the bastard youngest son of one of the most screwed up families imaginable. Hell, he’s not even a wanted
part of the family- he’s just the accidental wrench thrown in to make even more trouble.
It’s not Dawn that sits down beside him, but her sister. Buffy. They don’t look anything alike, Dawn is tall and willowy with soft curves and amazing blue eyes. Her sister, settling down beside Adam with a can of coke looks nothing like her, she’s small and blonde and whipcord lean.
Hell, Adam and Dean are half-brothers and even they look more alike than Dawn and Buffy do.
“So, I gotta say,” Buffy begins conversationally, popping her can open, “I think it’s pretty commendable, what you’re doing.”
“Trying to clean up your brothers’ mess,” Buffy shrugs with her dark golden shoulder and sips at the frothing liquid. The pre-med student in Adam really wants to start ranting about the amount of chemicals in her hands, but Buffy’s supposedly a lot
stronger than she looks so she can probably take it.
“It’s pretty ballsy of you,” Buffy continues with a gleam in her eye, “very Steven Seagal-esque lone rangering against the bad guys…. Except with much better hair.” She stops and squints at his hair in consideration, sipping at her coke with tiny, controlled swallows. “Though it’s not much of a compliment.”
Adam decides to disregard the whole segue into the discussion of his hair, remembering that he doesn’t really know how to talk to women when they veer wildly off tangent. “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
“Of course you don’t,” Buffy snorts and shoots him a blinding grin that looks identical to Dawns, looking beautifully young at that moment and thereby warming some part of Adam’s reticence towards its’ owner. “Because I’m pretty sure that some of my siblings, and I’m using that term very
loosely here, whose names shall not be named- *ahem Zachariah*, they’ve been pretty busy. What with yanking you out of Heaven and all, making sure that the apocalypse rolls ahead smoothly. They’ve probably even spun you a real
nice story, something undeniably heroic that only you can help them with.”
She pauses, sighing as she huddles deeper into her own embrace on the steps. “How am I doing so far Adam?”
Adam stays silent, inadvertently remembering the talk that he had with Zachariah, the promises that the angel made him, the urgency in his voice as he asked for Adam’s help.
“Except, here’s the thing,” Buffy leans forward, putting her elbows on her knees, “my brothers? And I can’t believe that I’m actually calling those asshats that,” Buffy laughs sharply, “they have this habit of lying through their teeth. And Zachariah? I’m guessing that Zachariah was the one in charge of your little Lazarus project?” She raises an eyebrow as she glances over her shoulder.
Adam can’t help it, he knows he’s not supposed to and yet he finds himself nodding, like a puppet in a hazy fog.
Buffy shoots him a brief glance of approval, almost involuntary and softer than all her previous looks at him.
“Yeah, Zachariah- from what I can vaguely remember at least, has always
been kind of a dick. He’s not going to offer you as a viable substitute for Dean unless it’s his very last resort, he doesn’t like to be proven wrong, and admitting that he couldn’t get a human to say yes- it’ll kill him. I know big bads,” Buffy cracks her neck, coiling muscles of strength stretching underneath her skin as she stands up, “and I’m sure, two hundred percent
that the whole thing smells like a trap. It has that sweet smell of betrayal to it.”
She gives him a smile and Adam notices that her blonde hair, shining in the rays of the dying sun- it gives her a halo and for that brief moment in time, Adam has no problem believing that this woman in front of him was an angel thousands of years ago.
“Also,” Buffy tells him amiably, “I saw you checking out my sister and while she’s an adult that’s perfectly capable of making your life hell if she chooses to, I have a few words on that subject.”
She takes a step closer to Adam, effectively blocking out the harsh glare of the sun with her shadow. “You hurt my sister, in any
way-“ she smiles, sharp and toothy, “and I’ll break your arms and legs.”
Adam gapes at her. He can’t help it really.
“Alrighty then,” Buffy gives him an affectionate smack on the shoulder than nevertheless leaves him smarting and wanting to hiss in pain but not doing so because Adam, sensitive man that he may be, is not actually a girl
. “I’m going to go wait for the prophet at the gate, there are words that I need to have with him before Dean-o gets his claws out.”
“How do you know he’s coming?” Adam discreetly rubs at his shoulder, because hell- it hurts
“I’ve got a feeling,” Buffy shrugs and steps away into the receding light of day, “and sorry about your shoulder, I can get a little physical. But you know what you can do? Go ask Dawn for some ice. And Adam?” Buffy pauses from where she’s standing on the dirty ground of the junk-yard, surrounded by shadows and still faintly glowing, “Remember what I told you about Zachariah. If you decide to trust us
, ask Castiel to ward your dreams against intrusion. Might be a good idea so Zachie-boy doesn’t keep Freddy Krueger-ing you.”