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Family Issues

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Summary: Dean and Sam get custody of their cousin, who needs more help than they realized

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Supernatural > GeneralKarieFR1548,0852288,03511 Jun 068 Jul 06No

Chapter One *revised*

Title: Family Issues
(might change later =) I had to come up with something and this was the only thing that popped into my head)

Disclaimer: Nothing and no one belongs to me except the original character

Author's note: This starts out just Supernatural, then does the crossover thing a little later. I know the character Torie is a little bit like my OC in my fic Darkness =o) They're different but they share a lot of the same abilities. *shrug* There are just so many different ways to write stories about them.

Spoilers- everything on BTVS is fair game, but this is kinda an AU for both fandoms- the details will be explained in the story =) I don't want to give away too much of the story. As for Supernatural, I took a lot of liberties *shrug*.

Pairings: W/Dean *grin* been wanting to do this pairing for a while. The rest of the pairings will come to light later. (once I figure out what they're gonna be)

Feedback: Please! It makes writing so much easier if I know people like to read it =D

*~*~*

The cemetery was empty and almost dark. Torie Abrams knew they were watching her from the road, but were keeping their distance for now. Her best friend, Adrien, was there along with her cousins. She was supposed to go with them after the funeral, and she was grateful they were giving her the time she needed to say goodbye.

She'd tried to get ahold of the rest of her friends to see if she could go stay with them for a while, but everything had happened so fast. The state didn't want her going with anyone but family, but as soon as Willow, Xander, or Giles called her back she'd see what they could do. But for right now she wanted to be alone with her grandmother for just a little longer. She knew her Nana wasn't there, but she had watched as they filled the grave with dirt and stayed when they'd left.

She sat beside the mound of dirt, cradling a boquet of her Nana's favorite roses and clutching the rosary she'd recieved for her last birthday. While Torie had stopped actively going to church when she was twelve, her grandmother had still been diligent with her prayers. She had been a good Catholic woman, and she'd lived her life long and well.

Torie closed her eyes and didn't even try to stop the tears. She hugged her arms around her knees and rocked back and forth. Her grandmother was dead. Her anchor was gone, leaving her alone when she needed her the most. She'd been very little when she'd had the dream about her parents dying in a car accident. They never came home. That was the first of her visions, but not the last. It started slowly, then had quickly grown out of control.

Torie's grandmother hadn't believed her at first, worried that the nightmares and screaming fits were just afteraffects of her parent's death. A few phychiatrists later, Torie had been put on on so many drugs she was a faint ghost of the child she'd been. And the nightmares hadn't stopped and she'd started seeing things where there shouldn't have been, hearing voices that no one else could.

Then one morning when her grandmother was taking her to school, Torie had started yelling about a little girl in a blue dress...

"She's cold, Nana," nine year old Torie told her grandma, tears lingering on her long black eyelashes. The older woman froze, looking over at her granddaughter with worried eyes.

"Who is, Torie," she asked carefully. These days it was hard for her to keep from breaking down. She was at her wits end.

"Mandy," Torie whispered, looking out the window as they came to a stop sign. "Nanna, he took her from school. She thought he was her friend. H-he promised her ice cream." She shuddered and hugged her thin arms across her stomach.

"H-he hurt her..." Before her grandma could react, the little girl was out of the car and running towards the trees by the school. Her grandma slammed the car into park and started running after her.

"Torie! Victoria come back here right now!"

The little girl ignored her and kept running. She knew exactly where she needed to go. Mandy was cold. She needed to... Torie came to a halt, her eyes wide and her breath coming in pants. Her grandma found her there a couple minutes later, sitting on her knees.

"Victoria Anne Abrams, if you pull another stunt like that I swe-..." Her words died in her throat and she immediately reached out to pull Torie back away from the little girl lying in the middle of a pile of leaves.

"N-Nana, she's cold," Torie sobbed, burying her face in her grandma's shoulder.

"I know baby," her grandma whispered, then turned with Torie in her arms. "Let's go get her a blanket, sweetheart."

After that, the pieces fell into place. Her grandmother's first move had been to take her off the medication, which was making things worse. Then she'd found a mentor for the young girl, someone she trusted to help her build the shields she needed to get by. That's when she met Adrien's mother, a witch with the local coven.

Adrien had taken her under his wing as a little sister and they were soon inseprable. And when Adrien had gone to visit his uncle in Sunnydale, California, little Torie got to tag along. She'd thought Adrien's uncle was the coolest, even if he was awful stuffy. He hadn't seemed all that happy to see them at first, but he eased off a little after the first couple weeks.

Adrien had explained that his mom had thrown his uncle a guilt trip to get him to agree to let them stay. Something about a demon that nearly got her killed when she was little and he'd been in college. Torie had definently not wanted to know the details. The first couple days on the Hellmouth was a very, very different experience for a young Torie, but it was good for building her shields. Giles had helped her quite a bit, and she had him to thank for her sanity.

When she'd met Willow and Xander she'd thought they were the best thing since peanut butter. Even though there was a big gap in age, the nine year old fit in great with the teenagers. She hadn't really cared much for Buffy, but Will and Xander had made her laugh. She used to stand back with Xander and laugh at Adrien, who had the worst kind of crush on Willow. Then there was Dawn. They'd had a jealousy thing going there for a while. Every time Torie had come to visit, it'd start out rocky, then by the end of the summer, they'd be best friends.

Adrien hadn't gone with her for the whole summer since his high school graduation. She hadn't been to visit for a couple summers; there'd always been something happening in Sunnydale that made it unsafe for her to be there.

And now her everything was gone. She was alone, trying to keep everything from going out of control. She couldn't handle it and she couldn't get ahold of anyone in Sunnydale. Before her grandma's death, she'd been having some really weird dreams about her friends, but when she'd tried calling it was like all of them had dropped off the face of the earth. Then her grandma died and she hadn't been able to concentrate on anything else. In less than a week, the visions were getting worse, starting to get to her in the middle of the day. Her shields were starting to crumble, letting everything in. It was getting harder for her to function normally.

She'd locked herself up in the old farmhouse she and her grandmother had shared, ignoring any and all calls or visitors. Her mistake was not letting Adrien in to help her. She knew that, but she still didn't want anyone close. And now, she didn't have a choice. The state had made that decision for her.

She had to go with her cousins or go into foster care because Adrien had been crossed off the short list of guardians because he was only a few years older than she was. He was only twenty-one, not old enough to be a suitable guardian for a fifteen year old. Not that Dean and Sam were much older, but they were family. And she couldn't get ahold of anyone from Sunnydale. Yet.

She heard the footsteps come up behind her and she huddled down even tighter. "I'm not going anywhere, Adrien," she said softly. "I c-can't..."

She felt her best friend kneel down next to her, being careful not to touch her just yet. "Please listen to me, Torie-girl," he spoke softly in that faintly British accent of his, making Torie look over at him with tears in her eyes. His handsome face was understanding, and his blue eyes concerned as he finally took her hand. "Your cousins are good people. They'll take care of you. You need as much family support as you can get."

"They don't want me." The teenager sounded much younger than her fifteen years. "They think I'll be in the way- a liability. Why can't I just stay with you?"

"God, Torie, I wish you could," her older friend sighed and pulled her into his arms. He thought of her as a daughter, even though he was only six years older than her. "If I was married, it wouldn't be such a big deal. You know how they think, love."

Torie buried her face in his chest, not holding back the sobs that rocked her small body. "I-I don't want to go with them."

"They're the best option we have," Adrien explained again, his voice patient. He didn't want to watch her go either, but it was a necessity. "I've already talked to them, and they know about your gifts. What would happen if you got put into a foster home? They won't let you stay by yourself without going through a big court deal. You only have three years before you can choose for yourself."

Torie rested her head on his shoulder for a long time before finally pulling away. She looked over at the black car parked nearby, her eyes finding the figures of her cousins. They weren't bad people, she'd known even without her 'gift'. But hunting monsters? Was she really ready for that? No, she decided as she allowed Adrien to help her to her feet. But she didn't have a choice, did she?

*~*~*

"So... Torie," Sam started, uncomfortable, "Adrien told us you're not in school anymore." Dean glanced over at him, giving him an approving look. Sam wanted to shrug, but looked back at their young cousin they'd just picked up. She looked miserable, her face too pale surrounded by a mass of dark red hair that curled around her face and collar. Her green eyes were red-rimmed and watery, but she'd stopped crying for the moment.

It had been hard to watch her say good-bye to her friend after her grandma's funeral. Hell, it had been his grandma too, but he had met her maybe three times in his life. His dad hadn't had much contact with his mother's family after her death, and so neither had Sam or Dean. Poor girl. There had to be a limit to how much bad a person could go through in one day.

"I took the tests last year, kinda like getting my GED," her voice was quiet and slightly hoarse. She even sounded like hell. "I had a lot of home schooling."

Sam wanted to say something else, maybe ask her about what her friend had said about her being psychic. But how do you bring up something like that? 'So... That dude also said you were psychic. How does that work?' He couldn't see asking that. Not now anyway. Another half hour went by before they finally pulled into a hotel for the night.

They decided to get one room with two beds. There was no way they were going to leave her in a room by herself. Safety in numbers was the first thing their dad taught them. Besides, it was cheaper for them to get a cot than to rent another room. Torie didn't say anything as they settled in. She rummaged through her bags and pulled out some sweats, muttering something about taking a shower before disappearing into the small bathroom.

"What the hell are we doing?" Sam rounded on his older brother as soon as the shower started. "We can't take care of a fifteen year old girl!"

"We have to, Sam," Dean flopped down on one of the beds, rubbing his eyes tiredly. "She's family and I kinda agreed with that social worker. It wouldn't have been right to let her stay with that Adrien guy. He was nice and everything, but I didn't feel right about it."

"What if she gets hurt?"

"We all get hurt at one time or another, Sam. She'll learn." Sam looked horrified and Dean sighed. That hadn't come out quite the way he'd wanted it to, but it was the truth. She was a Winchester, even though she didn't carry the name. She'd learn to get out of the way and stay there, or she'd get hurt. Either way, it wouldn't happen more than a couple times before she learned. It sounded cold, even in his head. God, he was tired.

Not for the first time, he wondered what the hell he was doing- what he was becoming. Had he always been such a bastard, and he just hadn't realized it? Or was it just that he was becoming more numb to everything as time went by? He looked over at Sam, who was rummaging through his own bags. Even though it was a pain sometimes, he was glad that his brother still had a little of the shine of humanity that he felt like he'd left behind a long time ago.

The door to the bathroom opened with a click and he sat up, looking over at his cousin as she came out. "There's still hot water and towels," she told them quietly, rubbing at her hair with one of the white hotel towels. Sam grabbed his duffle bag and booked it for the bathroom before Dean could blink. His little brother wasn't stupid- he wanted the last of the hot water.

Dean's grin faded a little as he watched his cousin bend down to pick up her backpack. She looked so young, wearing a pair of men's gray sweatpants and an oversized gray hooded sweatshirt. Dean found himself wondering if she'd borrowed them from her 'friend' Adrien.

That thought was rewarded by a flash of angry green eyes. "There's nothing going on between me and Adrien," she informed him, her tone icy. She sat down on the other bed stiffly, pulling a pair of socks out of her backpack that looked like they wouldn't fit on Dean's little toe.

She was so small, not any taller than five feet even and she couldn't have weighed more than ninety-five pounds soaking wet. Not that she was skinny, she was just small. He found himself thinking that they were idiots for bringing her into their world. "And I would appreciate it if you'd stop thinking so damn loud. I've done my share of helping people, Dean. It might not have been the blood and gore type stuff you guys are more into, but I've helped."

"You can't read my thoughts," Dean stated, even though it seemed like that's exactly what she'd done.

She raised an eyebrow, which was peirced, he noticed suddenly. Why the hell hadn't he noticed that before? Now that he was really looking, she had a small stud in her nose as well. Not that he was a prude or anything, but the small piercings seemed weird with the almost pixiesh look to her. "I have my tounge pierced too," she said, sticking out her tounge, showing a blue barbell shoved through the center of it. "And no, Nana wasn't happy about it, but she wasn't much for forbidding me to do stuff and she signed for it. Do you believe me now?"

"What's Sam thinking about right now?" Dean jerked his head at the closed bathroom door where his little brother was taking a shower.

Her nose wrinkled and she kinda stared off into space a little. "He's thinking about the water-demon we're headed out to investigate. Now he's cussing because the hot water just ran out."

Dean chuckled, shaking his head as he could hear his brother shout and the water stop abrubtly. "That was an easy one," he told her, relieved to see that she'd relaxed a little.

"His shoulder is hurting him from this last mission you guys had. The one with the witch and the little kids." She frowned and played with the sleeves of her sweatshirt, looking at the closed bathroom door worriedly.

"What?" Had Sam been hurt worse than he'd put on? Why hadn't he said anything? Dean stood up suddenly and Torie flinched a little. He froze, not liking the uncomfortable look on her face. She looked like she was afraid of something. "Torie, it's okay. I'm not mad."

"I can help him," the teenager's voice was almost a whisper. "It's not that bad, and I can make it not hurt anymore."

"What? How?"

She shrugged, looking down at the floor. "We haven't really worked out all the details. It just started a couple months ago. I- I was helping the police look for this kid..." Her voice trailed off a little, and when she started again it was hesitant. "We found him, but he... We weren't in time to get him away completely unharmed."

Sam came out of the bathroom then, pulling a t-shirt on. Dean narrowed his eyes over at his brother. "Why didn't you tell me you were hurt?"

Sam looked confused, "It's not that bad, Dean. I just bruised my shoulder a bit. There wasn't anything you could do about it."

"Show me."

"Screw you," Sam scowled and went to sit on the cot. They'd done rock-paper-scissors to determine who got the cot and Sam lost. He hated it when Dean talked to him like that, ordering him around like he was his boss or something. He looked over at Torie, who didn't look at him. Suddenly, he got it. "You knew."

Her cheeks flushed a little bit and she nodded. "I can heal it, Sam. If you want me to."

Sam looked over at his brother, eyebrows lowered. Dean shot him a quelling look and he sighed, pulling his t-shirt back over his head. Torie walked over hesitantly and examined the massive bruise that covered his shoulder and stretched halfway down his back. Dean's breath hissed in at the healing bruise and Sam rolled his eyes.

"Not that bad, huh, Sammy?"

"Kiss my ass, Dean."

"Shhh." Both of the boys fell quiet as her hands gently touched the affected area. Sam fought the urge to pull away, her hands very cold on his heated skin. "Hold still, Sam. It'll be over in a minute."

To Dean, there wasn't anything spectacular happening. His cousin spread her hands across Sam's shoulder and back and closed her eyes. Her hair fell down to hide her face, but he could see how pale she was. Sam had closed his eyes too, and his breath was deepening, almost as if he was falling asleep sitting up. His head fell forward and Dean could see the muscles in his back moving. Finally, Torie's hands fell away and he was left looking at an unmarred version of his brother's skin. There wasn't any kind of discoloration left.

"Woah." He was the first to speak and he looked over at Torie in shock. She looked like she was going to fall over. She looked cold, and there was a slight purplish tinge to her lips. He reached out to help her to sit down and she pulled away jerkily. "I'm not going to hurt you, Torie."

She nodded, but made her own way over to the bed silently. She was moving slowly, almost stiffly. And when she lay down, she was careful to avoid her right shoulder- the same one she'd healed on Sam. Dean turned his attention back to his brother, who was looking at him with a dazed look in his eyes. His lips quirked up in a smile. "That was amazing, bro."

"What happened?"

"At first, it didn't feel like anything was happening. Then I started getting really sleepy, and my shoulder started to get warm. It was like a heating pack, only more... intense, I guess. Then it started tingling. Just before it stopped, it got really hot- almost painful. Then nothing. I can still kinda feel a little tingling." He rolled his shoulder, amazed at the lack of soreness.

"Don't ever hide something like that from me again," Dean ordered him gruffly and got up to take his turn in the bathroom. He knew there still wasn't enough hot water for a shower- it hadn't been more than a half-hour since Sam had taken his. So he washed his face and changed into a pair of pajama pants. He'd take one in the morning.

There was something bothering him, though, when he laid down to go to sleep. He looked over at Torie, who was sleeping on her back now, looking far from rested. In his experience, nothing came without a price. He watched her shiver a little, pulling the blankets up farther. So what had Torie paid to heal his brother?


***
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