There's nothing pure about Purgatory, Benny has concluded after being here far too long. Dean Winchester disagrees but Dean Winchester is a madman with a knife and a taste for blood that feels uncomfortably close to the lurch at the bottom of Benny's stomach when he realizes he hasn't fed on something alive in so long. It was worst right after he met Dean and struck a deal. He'd lie there on the ground as Dean took first shift - not sleeping, there was no sleep in this endless grey twilight, and watch the minute veins in Dean's neck, hear the comforting solidity of his heart, an endless rhythm, and he'd imagine what that blood would taste like. How good it'd be when it flooded down his throat, an exquisite torture because you just couldn't drink it fast enough. Then Dean would look at him and grin, a sharp flash of something in his smile, something alien and frightening, and Benny closed his eyes and looked away for the moment, hard and aching, and that too has been so long.
He got a grip on himself of course. Hunting monsters is hard if you can't make yourself concentrate on your actual prey. Sometimes he slips up, looks a little too long at Dean, doesn't glance away in time, and Dean meets his gaze with a concentrated ferocity as though to reprimand him.
Dean grows less squeamish over time with how Benny has to deal with his prey. Some of it is drinkable and in some way he can't define, it's necessary. He doesn't need sustenance, just as Dean doesn't need to eat. But the closeness of a heart as it gives up its last gasp, monster though it may be is more than sustenance. It's necessary in a way he doesn't understand. Nothing compares to that illicit lure of human blood of course. Monster blood is like a grey slime, it fills him but even that last drop of heart-blood doesn't warm him, not fully. Dean used to look away as Benny fed, a defiant gesture that said he didn't want to see the final depths.
Now he watches, gaze both curious and abstracted as though he saw what Benny did, but thought of something else entirely. The questions he asks are odd as well. "Have you ever drunk a demon's blood?" he says, when Benny had thrown aside one of the smallest creatures to attack yet. Benny hasn't drunk in days and this still wasn't good enough, solid and ugly in the base of the stomach, imaginary hunger making him irritable. Of course he hasn't drunk from a demon. There were rumours about things like that, but Benny has never met one, and his answer was exactly that, short and sharp, and he wonders why Dean Winchester of all people wants to know what a demon tastes like. Benny can't help there, but he imagines it would be savory. All that rich, perfect human blood mixed with a taint of evil. Sulphur might linger on the tongue, a taste of brimstone in the throat, hellfire in the belly.
But that's not what Dean Winchester wants to hear, and he stands restlessly, paces the small clearing they've claimed as their own while they rest. He eats in his own fashion, roasts what he deems acceptable, and then continues to pace with energy best saved for fighting. The smell of him is all too human, and though Benny's mouth doesn't water - that's a function long since lost to time, every sense of him is alert, twitching and present, nerves on edge and singing. There's something different about tonight, he can sense it, and although he's not sure what the change is, he's more than willing to wait and see how the proceedings go. He's still not expecting a harpy to seize its claws into the back of his head and attempt to drag him off by his goddamn scalp. It hurts like a motherfucker and even though he feels pain differently now, there's some venom in her claws that stings and burns like dead man's blood, and he can't reach his knife, too dazed to grope.
Then Dean was there, brutal and swift, blade the only shining bright thing in this place since he cleaned meticulously after every battle, and it was like he was fencing with the damn thing. It howled, a vicious cry, and the claws were out of his scalp now, but the rake marks burn like fire. He did his best though, finally closed his finger around his knife, and brought it up to slash at her.
It's fast though, faster than he could have predicted, circling over them and Benny ducks under a tree, hopes the tangling branches will shield him from it - the wing span is too large. Dean's assumed his usual stance, machete before him, braced and waiting. It's so quick however, that in one beat of her wings, she's raked his face as well, deep enough that blood wells to the surface and even from where he stands Benny can smell it. It raises his blood thirst, his rage and he dives out to tackle it. Dean's there first though, smooth and calm even with blood streaming down his forehead, slashes at the wings, and it falters. Benny takes the chance to decapitate it but not before it takes a chunk out of him, opens a gash down his arm that doesn't seem like it wants to heal, not with the way it stings and the skin refuses to close.
When it’s on the ground, mutilated wings crossed over its chest as though shielding itself from second death, Dean nudges it with a booted foot, kicks the head some distance like a grotesque soccer ball, and Benny can't help laughing and then wincing at the movement of his head. Now the adrenaline has worn off, the pain returns and it's actual pain. Not the brief itch of human blades, this reminds him of how fire licked at your body, of human pain, and whatever those claws secreted, it's done a number on him right and proper. He looks at his arm, at the torn cloth and the seething skin, holds back an exclamation. Dean's dealing with his own head first, scoops a handful of the clear water that'd been the reason they'd stopped in this area in the first place, washes the shallow wound and then wraps it as best as he can. It's a normal head wound - it bleeds freely and then slows to a trickle and Benny wishes his arm would follow suit but there's no such luck. The blood isn't flowing fast - there's no heart beat to force it, it's more a slow pool, and when he puts his fingers to the back of his head the same thing is happening. His usual healing is non-existent.
Dean steps closer, all that ripe human-ness of him, a palpable cloud of it, and Benny is so hungry. He knows what he needs, knows what will fix him, but he's not even going to ask, forces his fangs back down with an act of will. Dean's hand on his shoulder is oddly gentle and Benny blindly follows his lead as they backtrack a little bit, to the place where they'd killed the giant spider only a few hours before. He gets weaker as they move, the wounds still bleeding, slowly but inevitably and he doesn't know why Dean is bringing them back here, until Dean pushes him down with a stern hand onto a tree stump, and then shimmies up the tree to where the spider had lurked. When he gets back down, there's an odd slightly sticky grey mass in his hands, and Benny stares at it uncomprehendingly.
"Cobwebs," Dean says without being asked, and Benny doesn't ask what the fuck he's doing when Dean unwinds the makeshift bandage and sticks the revolting stuff directly onto the wound, and rewraps straight after. He does the same to Benny's head, sure and impersonal, touches him no longer than he has to, claps a hand on his shoulder when he's done and Benny feels sick, woozy and faintly disgusted. He can't stand spiders. He keeps his hand on his knife, and his eyes on Dean's back, tries hard to focus, but it hurts and he isn't used to that. When he takes a look at his arm though, the blood has stopped, the cobweb staunching it, and he's not entirely sure what to make of that. It's doing nothing to stop the pain though or mend the blood loss, and he's so out of it that he doesn't even hear the thing that creeps up on them. He's lucky Dean turned round at that moment and dispatched it, but Dean doesn't view it that way, chews him out for not saying that he needed to stop, and it hadn't taken more than a day in Dean Winchester's company for Benny to peg him as a hypocrite. He doesn't bother saying that though because he's in no shape for a fight.
He noticed that from the first time Dean trusted him just enough to turn his back on him and not keep glancing back every second, that he'd been shuffled into some category, not quite friend but some invisible box that Dean had invented for people he didn't know what to do with. It's something in the way Dean talks, almost absentminded at times as though Benny is someone entirely different, as though Dean sometimes forgets that he's not somewhere else entirely. He only calls him Sam once, flushes a dull red that Benny ignored because otherwise the antagonism below the surface in Dean would have boiled over, and Benny wasn't entirely sure who would take who in a fight. He has the advantage of years of experience down here, but Dean? Dean is used to fighting to the death and making it count.
So he nods along and pretends to remember the absentminded details Dean lets slip, because he's never been to Arizona, never wafted the dry dust of a long dead witch through a long forsaken town, but hell if he's going to tell Dean he doesn't know what the hell he's talking about. He's lost in that thought right now, as Dean kneels before him on one knee and tells him to focus, to think, to tell Dean what can be done, and Benny's lost in his own mind again, somewhere else entirely, just like Dean is half the time, back on the surface where there was light and something to eat. He breaks out of instinct not temptation in the end, can't even stop himself from leaning forward and licking that dried blood that Dean hadn't quite managed to clean. It's like goddamn sparks on his tongue, real and distinct, and hell if he knows what Dean is, or maybe it's just that he's gone so long without it but he can't help himself, ignores Dean saying "gross," in a voice of deep deep disgust.
It's a relief to let himself fall. It's a relief to give up the vague shred and hope of a dream of getting himself out of here, because this way he won't have to keep fighting everything he is. Won't have to deny himself, and then Dean punches him so hard in the jaw, that he feels it click, and it's only the certain sort of strength that holds dead bones together that stops it from breaking. It's not enough to stop him, only to delay him, and then he's up again, the blood-urge in his own veins saturating him, and it's like he has a heart again that pumps only one thing round his body - need. He gropes for words, speaks them with a tongue so thick and heavy he's surprised it can form words, cuts himself on his own fangs when he tries to spit them out. "I need," he says, and it's a relief to stop fighting what he is. But he's weak, so weak, the spark from that tiny taste fizzling out in seconds, and every movement feels slow and clumsy and imperfect. Dean's right there, impatient and angry looking, fielding his attempts easily, barking sense back into him, and when he finally gets a grip on himself, he has to sit for a second and think about that.
He's still alive. He'd lunged for Dean Winchester's throat, given up that shred of self possession, of thought and he's still alive. Maybe that trust isn't so grudging after all. "What the fuck was that man?" Dean's saying, and he's angry as hell, got a precarious grip on that knife like he's still having second thoughts.
"Only way to heal," Benny replies, and it's true. He can't mend the damage done by harpy claws unless he actually gets something that'll give him a boost of strength. No way will glutinous monster blood do the trick this time, there's only one thing here with that sort of juice and the idea of Dean baring his neck to a vampire willingly is closer than Benny really wants to get to madness. Looks like he's going to have to find this angel Dean keeps talking about and get out of here, all of it on half-power, and yeah part of him, the animalistic side that he's tried to tame with pure logic and reason, wishes he'd just ripped out Dean's throat, feasted for an hour and been done with all of this. Most of him though wants out of here, and he's glad he didn't.
He rubs a hand across the stubble on his chin, grounds himself a bit, but he can't make himself stand. He's like gelatine, boneless and rubbery, and Dean's still there in front of him saying something that sounds like, goddamn fucking vampires. Benny, looks at him with hazy eyes and watches Dean cast around for something, and then as clearly stop. The knife is there again, held in sure fingers and Benny feels more of a passionless curiosity about the form his death is going to take than anything else. When the blade cuts into Dean's forearm instead, he flinches as though it was his own skin, can't quite believe it wasn't.
Then Dean's hand is there, a cupped pool of his own blood in it, and he's smearing it on Benny's mouth, no more than a tablespoon or twos worth - the cut is shallow enough, already closing up, and it's not enough. Every drop is like a little bit of liquid fire, burns on the way down, and lights up Benny's veins until the lethargy of moments before has been replaced once more with the same desperate need, only assuaged a little by his own weakness. He has no shame about it, licks every single bit of the cool dried blood on Dean's arm, grips his wrist and draws Dean down, aware at the back of his mind of the knife Dean has to his throat, the warning implicit of his fate if he goes too far again. Then he's at the cut itself, closed up but oh so lightly, and just the tiniest bit of pressure would be enough to break the skin, enough to open Dean up, and that brings all sorts of thoughts to mind.
But the knife is cool against his throat, and Dean's yanked his arm away, shows no discomfort although there's now a dark ring of bruises around his wrist. "Like I said man, fucking gross," and he's scrubbing his arm against his jacket as though to ward away the touch. "Are you better?" He says it begrudgingly almost as though that hadn't been the entire point of the whole morbid exercise, and Benny can stand again, and actually focus on Dean's face.
"Yeah," he says shortly and looks away because yeah that disgust is pretty ground in, in Dean's face and Benny thought he'd shoved aside that instinctive kneejerk reaction against the term monster, but apparently not. It's still not enough, but he'll be goddamned even further than he already is, if he begs Dean for another drop. He can march on this, even fight on it.
Dean doesn't look away from him though, gaze cold and determined. "It's blood Benny," he says, like he can read minds. "I've given a hell of a lot more to get back to the people who need me, and for now you're on my side. No point you kicking the bucket here and now and making all of this harder," and he says it with just enough bravado that Benny doesn't know which of them Dean's trying to convince.
Driven by impulse once again, every impulse of the last few minutes forgotten, Benny bares his teeth. "What if I need more?" he asks, and yeah Dean's face flickers, because this man, Benny realises, has issues with vamps that go far beyond the average hunter's hatred of things that bite in the night. It's dangerous to push the point, Benny gets that, but hell it isn't like he's been making daisy-chains down here all this time. He expects to be told where to shove it, and downright taken aback when Dean actually thinks about it.
"What percentage strength are you back up to?" Dean asks, and he's being genuine, like he's actually considering this madness. "More importantly, where do you need to be, to stop being a liability and start being a help like you claimed you were gonna be."
Benny considers lying just for the laughs of it, but there's something about the set of Dean's jaw that says he's been pushed far enough for one twilight, that he's out of patience. So he answers honestly as best as he can. "Near as I can tell I'm well below half strength," and he displays his arm. The cobwebs had staunched the blood but the skin hadn't knit, not properly, not even as much as the cut on Dean's arm had. He was burning up the little bit of Dean's blood he'd been given just to stay upright. "Need to be more than that to be of use."
There's indecision in Dean's face, necessity warring with distaste, and he bites at his lip, a movement Benny can't help tracking. "Jesus," he says finally, resignedly. "You really aren't faking this are you?" Benny keeps silent, because he'd thought that was pretty obvious. But when Dean raises his knife again to cut, he shoots his hand out.
"No more cuts," he says, though watching a blade drawn across taut skin, and the beading red that followed it had been more enticing than he'd ever imagined it could be. "You're weakening yourself. If you're going to let me do this, you've gotta let me feed. The wound will heal quicker, it's much smaller and I'll be able to tell when to stop." It's genuinely the best solution but it's a hurdle, because Dean has yanked his arm away again.
"I'm not letting a vampire bite my fucking neck," he says roughly, and he's tense as a startled cat, every inch of him screaming no, and yeah Benny has to work with what he's given.
"Not neck," he offers, "arm." He'd say leg, that steady pulsing beat of one of the largest arteries in the body, so close to the surface, but Dean would probably decapitate him where he stood. Arm is a compromise. Arm will get him enough blood and allow Dean freedom of movement to control it, which Benny is already realizing is the most important thing about this whole situation. "You can hold a knife to my throat, minute you think I'm going too far, you can yank me off. I'm not so desperate now, so I'll keep more of my awareness." That's only half a lie, bloodlust takes you different ways. But he needs to convince Dean because otherwise Dean will leave him behind and screw up both their chances of getting out of here. Benny needs to be strong enough to fight what's coming.
He sees the acquiescence in Dean's face, before he heard him mutter yes, and he slumps in relief. "Anything you want to tell me before we do this?" Dean says, and now he's agreed, he's moved right on past how revolting he finds it, pressed that deep down, and gone straight into dealing with the nitty-gritty. No hemming and hawing. Benny could grow to like that about him if it gets turned in his favour more often.
They're both adults here so he's going to bring it up, because he doesn't want that of all things to panic Dean enough into killing him. "You might get hard," Benny says, "there's something about being sucked that takes some people that way," and Dean shrugs like he knows that, and there's a certain look to him as though he knows more about that than he’s ever going to share. Hell, Benny doesn’t care, they've been down here long enough, and he tucks that away for future thought. "You're gonna have to pull me off as well," and Jesus everything he's saying sounds like an innuendo now. Dean doesn't even bother to nod, they both know that if Benny tries pushing it too far, then their fragile truce is broken, no matter how intrigued Dean is by the knowledge that Benny has of a possible escape, and Dean Winchester's version of a parting handshake will hit Benny full on - vulnerable as he feeds.
He's not certain how to go about it at first but Dean strips off his jacket, rolls up his sleeve and turns his arm outwards, displays the slight blueness under his tanned skin. The stretch of his arm is vulnerable but the look on his face isn't, a determined quality to it, set and strange like there's a whole story here that Benny doesn't know and probably never will. He's not turning down this opportunity though, not for all the tea in China, and with only the most momentary hesitations, he sets his fangs to that fragile skin, the thinnest curtain between the world and the blood that keeps Dean going, and then sinks them in. It tastes like blood, thick and salty and once he'd have been revolted by it, now he practically moans against Dean's arm, half his nature engrossed in the feed, the other half desperately holding back, trying not to get caught up in the endless, repeated rhythm of the heart, the surpassation of every other sensation in this moment. It's like he's draining God, getting his teeth into the divine, the sheer flavour overwhelms him, and he's hard as a stone, and then there's a strong push at his head, and he's got just enough sense to loosen his teeth a little because the next blow when it comes will take Dean's flesh with it, if he doesn't.
From where he's sprawled back on the floor - more from surprise than from Dean's strength, now that he's repaired his own damage, he can see he's not the only one with exactly that problem. Dean's clearly, palpably hard, and Benny acts as much off instinct in this as he had when he'd been drinking, sucks the remainder of the blood from his fangs, tiny pinpricks of pleasure in even that minute taste, and gets back to his knees. Dean's standing there still like he's not sure whether to flee or stay, and Benny solves that problem by fondling that bulge hard, makes it clear that he knows exactly what Dean's hiding under those jeans of his. He almost forgets where he is, kneeling on the ground in Purgatory, hyped up from blood and about to attempt to suck Dean's dick, when Dean fingers are on top of his, fumbling at the zip and saying "forget the fangs," and Benny almost did. Dean's dick is hard and solid under his hand, and the skin here is even thinner, the blood calls to him even now he's had his half-fill. Maybe especially because of that. Dean solves that problem, knocks Benny to the ground, straddles him with ease, clearly used to this, pins his wrists to the ground with an easy hand, and Benny can't resist snatching a kiss, easy and fast for the hell of it.
That's what makes Dean go tense with surprise, and Benny takes advantage of the moment to get the drop on him, rolls them over on the ground and shoves their hips together, rutting up against him hard and fast for a second, not long enough to chafe, and then just as a reminder that Dean isn't the only one here with a plan, isn't the only one who can exert some control, he chances going down, gets Dean's dick in his mouth, and Dean goes rigid from fear even though Benny's fangs are fully retracted. The kick of vulnerability gets Benny off more than he can say, and he takes Dean fully in, no need for breath, looks up and one of Dean's hands is still gripped round that knife and the other is digging into the dirt. He's still painfully hard and Benny grins, hollows in his cheeks and watches that conflict between lust and fear spark in Dean's face, pleasure warring with terror, feeding into each other and sucks him on down deep, doesn't come back up until Dean's jerking his hips up uncontrollably, and he can feel himself losing control, too much blood too close to the surface, there in his mouth and so close. So he pulls back off and admires his handiwork until Dean, roused from his paralysis takes back control.
Benny's not entirely sure how it happens but his pants are down and Dean's got a hand in between his thighs, cupping his dick, massaging him to full hardness and it gets Benny going knowing that some of the blood in his veins, some of the blood swelling his dick is Dean's. He's got all sorts of thoughts about what he wants to do to that ass, about how hot it'll sound when Dean's stifling his own moans so he doesn’t bring predators down upon them both, and he's surprised when Dean sucks two fingers into his own mouth, and then without a second’s hesitation, slides them straight up Benny's ass. It hurts, that dull swift ache that vanishes almost as swiftly as it appears, but the fingers are there still, and it's Benny's turn to be paralysed with surprise. Dean grunts in amusement, takes the opportunity to knock him onto his back and get those fingers in deeper until Benny can really feel it, the unsubtle thrust, and while he wouldn't say it feels good, he's not exactly dying to get them out either, he's just feeling a little dazed.
"If you want this, you're going to have to get on your front," Dean says, cool as you please, like he's not hard, like he hasn't fed a vampire and followed it up with plans to fuck him, and Benny's ire rises at that, he's already trailing after Dean because Dean's too stubborn to leave a friend behind, like hell is he just rolling over for him. Then Dean's fingers dig a little deeper, in a way that Benny suspects would hurt an actual human, but that makes his cock twitch a little, wet and slippery from Dean jerking it and now from being opened up hard and rough and ready for a goddamn human dick, and there's something in that, that makes his stomach clench and his lips dry as he loses all will to say no.
He rolls over, bows his head and stares at the lifeless ground, watches his knuckles go white as Dean pushes into him with no more than those cursory fingers and a mouthful of spit. It would have been near impossible if Benny hadn't been healing, and he almost moans at the feeling of being split open, tugged apart, a rough fire in his veins, the pain fading almost instantly - this isn't harpy claws and Benny's still spinning high on blood, and Dean grunts out an incredulous sound when he realises Benny's healing, tightening up around him, a muffled fuck at how it feels, and Benny thinks it must be too tight, almost painful, but can't concentrate on anything other than that sensation - torn apart and remade in the same image, every move Dean makes is a slick burn of fire followed in seconds by healing, only for it to happen all over again, Dean just about wet enough, with just enough pre-come and spit that the slide isn't impossible.
It's like no sex he's ever had before, human or vampire. After he was turned, one thing mattered, one thing only, blood any way he could get it, nothing compared. This is something that he didn't even think could happen. He's vaguely aware of the sharp pain that only exists for micro-seconds before it's washed away, wonders how Dean can push through that. In a moment of thoughtlessness he pierces his own lip, winces at the self induced pain so much clearer than anything Dean can do to him, licks away the drop, and Dean's got his hands on his hips, the way he fucks like the way he does everything else, a means to an end and Benny didn't think he'd get caught up like this, is finding out how wrong he is. He wonders as Dean shoves his legs apart just a little wider, just an inch and takes advantage of it, the steel of his knife cold and alien against Benny's skin; whether he's ever fucked anyone like this before - so certain and knowing they can take what he's giving, heedless of any damage. Then Dean's finally getting it right, and Benny supports himself on one hand as he fumbles for his cock with the other, strokes himself hard and fast as Dean fucks him, getting him in the right spot time after time, like now he has a target he's aiming for it - and that's Dean all round as Benny knows from his limited acquaintance with the man.
Most of the thoughts are driven out of his head after that, as he comes helplessly all over his hand and the ground, pleasure stripping away the last of the burn, though Dean doesn't stop there, continues to drill into him searching for his own orgasm, mute and silent, fingers pressing so deep that they'd rip the skin off an actual human, and Benny doesn't protest, steadies himself against the thrusts, feels the changes in his own body as minutely he accommodates Dean and then rejects him once more, clenches up involuntarily as Dean finally comes, slick and messy, easing his own exit a little, and it's the bizarrest thing Benny's ever felt. He's finally coming down off that blood high, exacerbated by his wound and by the fact that it's been so long since he'd had anything to drink that was even remotely human, and he can't quite believe he rolled on over like that so damn easily, until he thinks about the rough press of Dean's fingers in him, the human warmth and how easily Dean broke and shook apart as he fucked him, and above all how good it was. They don't say anything as silently they clean themselves up, Dean not even looking at him, face turned away as though he can't let what he's thinking be seen. Benny thinks he can guess but he values his head on his shoulders enough not to say it, bites his tongue a bit for fun and swallows the thin trickle of blood.
Instead they prepare themselves to continue the search, to find Dean's angel friend, so he can get back to the brother on earth who is never far from his thoughts; Dean stalking forward a little bit, taking point, Benny two steps behind, ready for the fight once more and with a whole new angle on what makes Dean tick.