I of course do not own anything to do with Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Supernatural.
The air was cleaner here. Sweet and cool without the pollution of the city. I have been in L.A. way too long, she thought. She was fifty feet above the ground in the limbs of one of the giant conifers that abound in the Sioux Falls area. She was trying to get her bearings, to make sure she hadn’t gotten off course during the last storm that had rolled through the forest yesterday.
She lifted her right hand to shield her eyes as she scanned the scenery. Then she saw it. A small open clearing, no bigger than a football field among miles and miles of trees. That was the place that had haunted her dreams for the last four months. It looked to be less than two miles away. With a sigh of relief, she closed her eyes and simply enjoyed the feeling of the sun on her face and the wind in her hair.
The peaceful moment was suddenly shattered when a blinding white light dropped from the sky and landed in the middle of the clearing. This can’t be a coincidence. And quicker than should have been possible, Buffy Summers jumped out of the tree , landed lightly on her feet and took off running.
The darkness was suffocating. The weight of it pressed down on his chest, crushing him. He couldn’t move, couldn’t breathe. He fumbled in his pockets and then he found it, his trusty lighter. In the dim light he could see that he was inside a simple wooden box. A coffin.
Buffy made it within 10 minutes and what she found took her breath away. Every tree within a hundred yards of the clearing had been leveled, blighted and black. All her slayer instincts told her that something very powerful had just been here. She looked around, though she could sense that there was no one . Soon her eyes landed on a small wooden cross. Hmm, that seems odd. She thought to herself. Why had she been brought here? Was she too late? She could feel an urgency building up inside her. No, she wasn’t too late. Whatever she needed to do, it still needed doing.
Inch by inch, he made his way upward. He didn’t know if he could make it. His lungs were screaming for oxygen and his hands felt raw and bloody from the journey to the surface. Just when he could not stand it any longer, he felt his fingertips break through. Then he felt the touch of a pair of small hands grabbing his and pulling him free.
Buffy gave a sharp tug on the hands that had a broken through the earth. Normally only vampires,crawled out of graves, but she knew this man wasn’t a vampire. His hands, though dirty and bloody, were calloused and warm. Not to mention, it was daylight. And her vamp-dar wasn’t going off.
One more pull and she had him free. He was unsteady on his feet though ,and tipped forward, taking her by surprise. They both went down on the grass. Buffy held on to him and took the brunt force of the fall with her own body.
“Where am I? ” His voice was deep and raspy, straining on even those few words. “And who the hell are you?”
“You’re in South Dakota,” Buffy said as they untangled themselves. She watched him closely as he sat up and looked around at the destruction around them. He looked human enough. But she still didn’t know why she had been compelled to come here. Was she supposed to help this man or kill him?
“Here, take some water. My name is Buffy.”
Dean looked around at the too-bright world. Everything was too harsh, too loud, too real. He looked at the woman who had helped pull him out of the grave. His grave. She had saved him. He didn’t know if he would have had the strength to make that last push if she hadn’t pulled him out. She didn’t look like much. Short and skinny, with blond hair and green eyes, she didn’t look dangerous. But he knew demons could take any human’s body, even a small child He could hear her say something but the words just jumbled together.
“What was that?”
“Water, drink some.” This time he could make out the bottle she was offering him. He took it and drank it. God, he was thirsty. Then he felt her small hands again tugging on his arms as she told him they need to leave.
“I didn’t get you name,” Dean said as he stood up, dirt falling around him. He couldn’t believe what he was seeing. Every tree in a hundred-yard diameter had been felled. Each one charred and blackened. What had happened here? He needed to get to Bobby.
“Buffy,” The cute blonde said. It wasn’t a name he had expected; it was such a stupid name he almost laughed.
“Look, Buffy. Thanks for helping me out here. But I gotta go.”
Buffy looked at the young man. She could tell that he was trying to ditch her as fast as possible. But she needed answers first.
“Not so fast.” Buffy put a hand out to stop him. She had a gut feeling that she had been brought here for a reason and she was damn sure going to find out what that reason was. “You just crawled out of a grave and the entire area surrounding that grave looks like a mini nuke went off. So tell me, do you really think I’m just going to let you leave here without getting a little more information about why I dreamed of this place for four months.”
The man narrowed his eyes at her. “Look sweetheart, if you think a little girl like you is going to stop me, you’ve bleached that head of yours one too many times.” He had expected feminine protest. What he had not expected was to find himself flat on his back with a perky little blonde looking smugly down at him. How the Hell did she do that?
“You were saying?”
Dean fumbled for words, wondering how the fuck a hundred-pound nothing had thrown him down as easily as tossing daisies. Then it all clicked together.
“You’re a demon!”
Buffy just stared at the man. “Seriously!” She said. “You’re the one who climbs out of grave, in daylight, and you’re calling me a demon?! I should stake you right now and send you back to whatever hell you came from.”
“You’re the freaking She-Hulk! Only a demon has strength like that. Why the fuck would a demon raise me from Hell!”
Buffy and Dean eyed each other suspiciously, neither one willing to make a move just yet.
“Are you a Hunter?” Buffy asked. She knew they existed. She had even made friends with a few of them. But no Hunter she knew would be able to work the kind of mojo needed to raise someone from the dead. Not alive and whole and human. “You know what silver will do to a zombie?”
The man nodded, his gold-green eyes never leaving hers. Carefully Buffy reached into her pack and withdrew a small dagger. She held out her hand for him to see and quickly slashed the flesh on her arm with the razor-sharp edge. They both watched the crimson blood well up and flow down her skin. Buffy arched a brow and then gently threw the knife to the man, who deftly caught it by the handle.
Dean was skeptical of the girl, even if she had passed the silver test. But she was waiting on him ,so he took a deep breath and drew the silver blade across his own arm to show her that he, too,was human. He looked smugly at her before tossing the knife back to her. One last test.
“Christo” They both said in unison. “Huh.”
Buffy was about to start asking questions again when suddenly the man dropped to the floor, hands over his ears as he writhed in pain. Buffy leaped up to check on him when a voice, more terrifying than any other she had ever heard, called out across the meadow.
Dean. Dean Winchester.
“Get up! Dean, we gotta get out of here! Something is coming,” Buffy screamed as she stashed the knife back into the pack and grabbed the man she assumed was the Dean Winchester She hauled him to his feet and set off running towards nearest town. Whatever had caused the panic seconds before seemed to have stopped. The man, Dean, was running alongside Buffy, keeping pace with her. She pointed to the right of their current path to lead him in the direction of town. After five minutes of running they were able to stop and catch their breath.
“What the Hell was that?” Dean panted. He leaned forward and rested his elbows on his thighs. He could still feel the adrenalin pumping through his veins. He hadn’t felt that alive in a long time. He turned his head to look at the woman by his side. She was barely winded, much less than him. May need to cut back on the cigs there, Dean thought to himself. He looked around and took in their surroundings. They had made it to the edge of some little rinky-dink town. Every building was old and rundown and not a single person could be seen.
“I don’t know, but I think they were after you. Your name Dean Winchester?” Buffy said as they started walking toward a small convenience store. She needed to get to a phone. Her battery had gone dead in her cell phone and it had been several days since she had last checked in with her friends.
“Yeah, sugar, it is. Why do you want to know?” Dean asked, keeping the suspicion out of his voice as he looked her over. He didn’t know who or what she was, but for some reason he had started to trust her, at least enough to not kill her right away. The reality of where he was had started to sink into his consciousness. He was really back.
“Damn, no pay phone.” Buffy said as she peered into the store. She turned back to Dean. “Whatever that was back there, it was calling you.”
“You heard it say my name?”
“Yeah, didn’t you?” Buffy replied, confusion and concern wrinkling her brow. Why would she hear his name but not him? That made no kind of sense at all. All in all, this was one of the stranger days she had had in a really long time.
“No, all I heard was some super sonic screeching shit.” Dean could see that no one was in there store and when he looked around, could see that they were alone on the street as well. So, he pushed the doors open and headed right in. God he was thirsty. Thirsty like he had never been. Even though he had shared some of Buffy’s water, his mouth still felt like a desert. He grabbed some bottles of water and started guzzling as fast as he could. He could see Buffy out of the corner of his eye as she looked around for a phone. He didn’t know why she was still here, or why he let her, but he wasn’t quite ready to see her leave, yet.
“Damn, phone is disconnected,” Buffy muttered under her breath. This was not good, not good at all. She didn’t know what the hell was after them, but instincts told her that whatever it was, it would come again. She needed to get Dean out of here and to somewhere safe. The safest place she could think of was in Sioux Falls. She grabbed a map and tried to find the quickest route. Looked like Sioux Falls was 45 miles away. Too far to walk since they were in a hurry. That meant getting a ride.
Dean had finished off 3 bottles of water and was looking around when he saw the title Busty Asian Beauties. “Oh yeah!” But before he could his hands on it, a small dainty pair was pulling him back outside the store.
“What you do that for?!” Dean demanded.
“Do what? We need to go. We don’t know how safe it is here,” Buffy replied as she walked down the sidewalk. They needed a car, and she knew the only way was to steal one. She really hated doing that, but she didn’t have enough money for a cab ride and didn’t have time to wait. She stopped in front a little, blue sedan. It had a for sale sign on the dashboard. Listening to her instincts, she tried the handle and breathed a sigh of relief when it popped open. Now, if she was just lucky enough to find some keys.
“This your car?” Dean asked as he went to the passenger side. This car didn’t look like something she would drive. It was probably older than she was. But it did look clean. He sat down and waited for her to start it up. But she was too busy going through the glove box to answer him. Then it dawned on him. It wasn’t her car.
“Here, move over.” Dean gently pushed her over as he knelt down and pulled some wires from the steering wheel. Buffy just arched a brow and slid over to the passenger seat. Within a minute Dean had the car running and they headed toward the highway. They rode in silence broken only by Buffy directing Dean on which way to go.
“Um, Buffy. I want to thank you,” Dean said awkwardly. Damn, he wasn’t good with this kind of crap. “You really saved my ass back there.” He stared straight ahead as he talked, not looking at the woman who sat next to him, a small smile on her lips.
“Don’t worry about it,” Buffy replied. It had surprised her that he thanked her, she had taken him for one of those macho-manly types who couldn’t express any kind of emotional evolution above caveman.
They remained in silence until they got to the Sioux Falls city limits. Dean pulled over and turned to Buffy, who arched her perfect brows at him.
“Um, this is my stop. I have a friend close by, I can walk from here.” Dean looked at her awkwardly, not quite sure how to ditch her. If he didn’t have to find Bobby and Sam, he might have tried to get some back from the dead sex. She was a hot little number for sure. Dammit Dean, get your mind on what matters!
Buffy just looked at him, her expression unreadable. Then she broke out with a fit of laughter so contagious it even brought a goofy grin to his face.
“Come on, we can go see Bobby together. He’s been expecting me for a couple of days.”