Banner By: Mara
Anna appeared in the abandoned house and caught sight of the blonde a few feet away from her standing beside Dean’s body. Anna opened her mouth, but before she could speak the silence was broken by the Angel in front of her.
“Does he know? Does he know what they are planning?”
Her body tensed. “No.”
She nodded, jaw clenched and turned to face the red headed woman before her, anger clouding her features. “Has he not sacrificed enough? Is this why I was called down here? How much more can he be pushed before he finally breaks?”
Anna sighed. “He’s not being punished. I needed you down here because I don’t have the power to bring him back, but you do.”
She shook her head and motioned around the empty room. “Bring him back to what? I know what your Angels are planning Anna.”
She practically spat the word, disgust clearly written on her face as she continued. “And while I understand that you’re taking precautions to protect the world from Azazel I won’t bring him back so you can rip his family from him. You never get over that sort of pain. It’s not a life that I’ll condemn my own son to!”
Anna met the fierce eyes of Mary Winchester and straightened her body. “Mary I would think if anyone understood it would be you. Some sacrifices need to be made. We need Dean in this fight or his family won’t survive. Everyone he cares about will be killed.”
She closed her eyes, pain etching across her features. This was her fault. How did she ever think she would be able to escape this life? Even in death she couldn’t find peace. She’d kept John in the dark and when she was murdered he had gone off the deep end taking her boys with him.
Her eyes fluttered open and she glanced over her shoulder at her son’s broken and bloody body. Her first born, her baby, loyal to a fault. All he ever wanted was a family and this is what he got, death several times over and from his brothers hand.
Dean didn’t deserve this life. She swallowed hard and turned back to Anna and sent the young woman a calculating look. “I’ll bring him back, if I have your word that once this is all over Dean will get a chance to finally live his own life and be happy.”
Anna hesitated and pursed her lips together before speaking carefully. “Mary, I understand you want the best for your children. It’s what any mother wants. Azazel destroyed your family and countless others. We have a plan that will stop him once and for all. Not bind him or send him to hell, but kill him. Rid humanity of his evil.”
She swallowed hard when Mary’s features didn’t change. “Does that mean nothing to you?”
“I’m not my husband Anna; I’ve long since passed the stage of wanting revenge. What I want are the remaining members of my family safe and happy. Can you guarantee me Dean will be able to live his own life after this? That the Angels will no longer interfere?”
Her shoulders slumped and she shook her head. “I can promise you all of that, but I’d be lying. Things are not set in stone. I can’t see the future, but I can tell you that once Azazel is gone it’s over. The Angels will sever their ties to your son and Sam will finally be free of control the demon blood has inside of him.”
She took a deep breath and spoke with honesty coloring her voice. “Not everyone will survive, but every person you care about makes their own choices. I can’t force them to do anything.”
Mary raised an eyebrow. “And Jo Harvelle? What’s to come of her Anna? Does she know why you brought her back?”
Anna glared at the older woman and let out a short puff of air. “No she doesn’t and I don’t need to explain myself to you Mary or to Jo. All that matters is she’s back and she can make whatever choices she chooses to make.”
“Free will doesn’t exactly mean as much when you manipulate the situation to your advantage does it?”
Anna’s arms crossed over her chest, jaw tight. “You’re either in this fight with us or you’re not. If you’re so worried about your family instead of standing here arguing with me maybe you should bring your son back so he can finish this mess once and for all. A mess that may I remind you, you created because you couldn’t bare the loss of your husband.”
Mary held her eyes for a second before looking away. She turned toward Dean and Anna let out a sigh of relief. She knew Mary would have a problem with this, but it wasn’t just about them and as cold as it made her sound the survival of the many outweighed the one.
She watched Mary bend over Dean’s body and she turned away. It was time for her to go. There were things that needed to be done. The next time she saw Mary, Dean would be awake and by her side. As Anna left, Mary focused her energy on Dean.
Using her newly acquired grace to mold and mend his body. It would take some time, but Dean would be okay physically. Mentally was a whole other story.
Sioux Falls, South Dakota
Jo slid her hand across the foggy glass and gazed at herself in the bathroom mirror. The shower had helped calm her enough to focus on staying strong for William. She leaned over hands grasping at the edge of the sink in a harsh grip.
She was exhausted, but every time she shut her eyes the only thing she could see was Dean. Three years and he was still jumping in the line of fire for her. He had finally come back into her life only to be torn out of it again.
She could feel the emotions building up and she tried to push them back down. She took a deep breath and opened her eyes. When she glanced up into the mirror she jumped and spun around. Castiel stood behind her shifting from foot to foot.
She turned away from him grabbing a tissue and discreetly wiping her eyes before blowing her nose. She tossed the tissue and faced him eyebrow raised. “Can I help you?”
He cleared his throat and glanced around the bathroom before his eyes landed on her slightly pale face. “I didn’t mean to disturb you. I knocked, but I was unsure if you heard me. I just wanted to apologize for-“
“For what leaving Dean with the wicked witch of the west? I’m getting seriously tired of all you Angels especially your little girlfriend. You should have taken him, not me.”
Castiel pursed his lips together and frowned. “I don’t wish to be rude, but you know nothing about the choices I am forced to make. Do you think you’re the only person who lost someone here? I understand that what you and Dean had was complicated and I believe he loved you very much, but I have spent the last two and a half years by his side, fighting alongside him. Dean was…my best friend.”
Jo’s eyes watered slightly as he continued speaking softer this time.
“I did what he asked because of that reason. I did not want to leave him there. It was one of the hardest things I’ve ever been instructed to do, but he spent six months looking for you so that he could reunite you with your son and when Dean gives his word…”
Castiel trailed off as a tear slid down Jo’s cheek, voice barely a whisper as she spoke. “When Dean gives his word he always keeps it.”
He nodded and Jo swallowed hard. “I’m sorry. I…I’m angry and hurting…I needed someone to blame.”
Castiel nodded and tilted his head to the side with a look of concentration on his face. “That is understandable. When Dean was angry he seemed to always like to blame the Angels. He called them dicks with wings I believe, not me, the ones in heaven. We can blame them if you’d like. It always seemed to make him feel better. That and shooting things.”
Jo chuckled lightly and gave the Angel a teary eyed gaze. “That sounds like him.”
She could feel the familiar tinge in her chest that she’d been getting every time she thought about him ever since leaving that stupid abandoned house. Castiel could feel her pain, she might be doing a good job of hiding it from the humans around her, but he was different.
He could feel her body vibrating with anguish, dark colors swirling around her aura. He opened his mouth, but before he could say anything there was a knock on the door.
“Mom, are you okay in there?”
Castiel watched as she reigned in her emotions, took a deep breath, moved to the door and pulled it open. She gave William a warm smile and nodded. “Yeah sweetie, I’m feeling a lot better now.”
He nodded and glanced at Cas with a smirk on his face. “Did you pop in the bathroom while Mom was in the shower Cas?”
He made a face as they moved out of the bathroom and into the spare bedroom as he shook his head. “No. I waited until she was out of the shower.”
William plopped down on the bed and rolled his eyes. “Dad says you shouldn’t do that. He says is a douche move.”
“William John Winchester!”
He winced at his full name and glanced up, a look of innocence on his face. “Yes Mother?”
Jo gave him a stern look attempting to keep the smirk off her face. He was definitely his father’s son. “I don’t want to hear you talking like that, go it?”
He nodded. “Got it.”
She smiled. “Good, now let me look at you.”
She kneeled in front of him and took him in. It had been close to nine months since she’d seen her son. He looked the same and yet completely different. His hair was longer and lightly spiked. His wore jeans, a Zeppelin t-shirt, and boots.
There were signs of his father’s influence everywhere. He’d literally become a mini-version of Dean. Her breath hitched and Castiel placed a comforting hand on her shoulder as she smiled through her tears. “You got so big. God I missed you so much baby.”
She pulled William into her arms and he squeezed her tight hiding his head against her shoulder.
“I missed you too Mom. I’m glad you’re home. When can we get Dad?”
He pulled back meeting her eyes as she floundered for an answer. Castiel cleared his throat and William raised an eyebrow in his direction. Jo sighed and took her son’s hands in hers as she spoke softly. “You and me kid, we’ve always been honest with each other right? The good and the bad?”
William nodded confusion on his face. “Well something happened when your Dad came to get me. We were attacked by a very strong demon who tried to kill me. But your dad…he saved me and you know why?”
He shrugged. “Because he loves you?”
Jo’s throat tightened as she focused on taking a deep breath and letting it out slowly. “Because he promised you he’d bring me home and your dad always keeps his promises. He was hurt William.”
His eyes watered as he glanced between his Mom and Castiel. His body tensed and he shook his head as he tore his hands from Jo’s grasp, voice wavering slightly. “But he’ll be okay?”
Jo’s lip quivered as a single tear fell and she shook her head.“I’m so sorry sweetie…”
William frantically shook his head and he yelled. “NO! No I don’t believe you! He promised he’d be back! He promised and you said he doesn’t break the promises he makes.”
Bobby and Ellen came running into the room at the sudden noise as Jo tried to reach out to William, but he pushed her away. “No…Dad is okay he’ll be back. He loves us!”
He ran to the door and took off down the hallway. Jo sighed and stood attempting to keep herself together. She knew exactly how William felt. This was the story of her life. She couldn’t ever catch a break. She moved to follow William when Castiel placed a hand on her shoulder. “Let me. I wish to speak with him if that’s alright.”
She hesitated, before nodded and watched the Angel disappear. She ran a hand threw her hair and shook her head. She turned and caught sight of Bobby and Ellen watching her. Jo’s jaw clenched and she let out a heavy breath before speaking. “Okay I need you guys to catch me up on what’s been going on. Obviously I’m behind and since things don’t seem like they’ll be slowing down any we need to be prepared for what’s gonna go down.”
When they didn’t say anything she raised an eyebrow. “Hello, is anyone in there? We have a demon to kill. There’s no way he’s getting his hands on my son, what do we have?”
Bobby snapped out of it and motioned for her to follow him downstairs. She listened as he spoke her mother chiming in every minute or so with explanations to his explanations. Jo sighed and pinched the bridge of her nose. It was going to be a long few hours.
Azazel paced around the motel room in irritation. He had spent several months putting his plan into action and one misstep, one miscalculation and the whole thing could have been destroyed. He could feel Sam stirring inside of him.
Ever since they’d surprised Dean and his little girlfriend at the prophets safe house Sam had been rattling against his cage. Apparently killing his brother wasn’t exactly helping to keep him quiet. He pinched the bridge of his nose and sighed.
The door opened and he glanced up as Lilith walked through the door. She raised an eyebrow at his flustered appearance. “Something wrong?”
“We need to get a move on, Sam’s trying to come out and play. It’s getting annoying. Where are we on opening the prison?”
She sighed and plopped down on the bed. “Not as close as I’d like, but close enough that we should be able to accomplish the task before the full moon.”
“And Alistair? Where has he gone?”
“Where you told him to go. He gathering demon’s, letting them know it’s time.”
“Currently being protected by that red haired bitch Anna. We’re working on beefing up the locating spells.”
He shifted leaning against the dresser, arms crossed over his chest, smirk on his face. “Our objective?”
“Ripe and ready for the taking.”
“Have they figured it out?”
There was mischief in Lilith’s eyes when she spoke, leaning back on the bed hands holding her up as her eyes roamed over his body. “They’re clueless.”
For the first time in days Azazel let out a genuine smile. “Hmm, what ever do you think they’ll do when they figure out it’s not the boy we’re after?”
“Kick themselves in the ass for being so blind?”
He nodded, walked over to the bed and stood in front of her. She titled her head to the side as he pushed her so she was lying flat against the sheets. She moved her body up the bed as he climbed onto it pinning her body beneath him. “Time for our contingency plan. After this you leave. You need to stay away from the fight so you don’t get caught in the crossfire. Is that clear?”
Lilith nodded as she arched her body against his and he let out a small groan. For moments like these he loosened Sam’s cage. Let him bubble to the surface ever so slightly so he could feel the experience and yet not do a thing to change it.
Two days and everything would be in place. He could feel the shift in balance as the veil between heaven, hell and earth loosened for the final battle. In two days Azazel would have everything he needed to bring this world to its knees.