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Survival of the Worthiest

Chapter Text

Mary Winchester

Way Number One

            Once John had tucked Dean into bed, he walked into the hall. Mary folded her arms. “You’ve been gone for three days.”

            “I know. Mary, I’m sorry. I needed to think. You said I could come home.” John reached out to her. “Honey, why don’t you sleep downstairs in the guest room? I’ll get bottles ready, and that way when Sammy wakes up you won’t hear, and you can get some sleep.”

            Mary looked at her husband, whose war-haunted eyes looked a little clearer. He’d gone driving and driving. Maybe he’d found some way to come home for good. “Okay, John.” She kissed him, and went downstairs.

            Maybe she’d watch one show before she went to bed…

            She woke two hours later to John’s scream, and a fire in Sammy’s room. She scooped Sammy into her arms, grabbed Dean’s hand, and ran. She sat shivering on the Impala as the firefighters cleared the house, took poor John’s body out. He hadn’t known about the demon. She’d kept her past from him.

            She wouldn’t do the same for her boys.

            They moved to South Dakota, where her old pen pal Jody worked as a cop. Mary managed to find a job as a mechanic (John had taught her, taught her so much, John), and wound up at Singer’s Salvage. Bobby Singer had lost his wife two years before, and when Mary found out that it was a demon that killed Karen she told Bobby all about the world, the world that had taken her husband and poisoned her baby. They started working together with Rufus.

            Another couple of years later, and they all moved in together, teaching Sam and Dean about hunting a couple nights a week and helping them with their homework the rest.

 

Butterfly Effect: Mary found the Colt when Sam was eight. She found Azazel when Dean was fifteen. She didn’t miss.

 

Way Number Two

            “It’s you!”

            The demon grinned at her, eyes flashing yellow as he held her baby—her Sammy—close to him. “Hi, Mary. Long time no see.” He held up a hand. “I’m gonna give you one warning. Leave now and close the door.”

            “No.”

            The demon’s grin grew wider. “C’mon Mary, you remember what I said. I’m not here to hurt your sweet baby.” He held his wrist above Sam’s mouth. He was bleeding, and the blood dripped into Sam’s mouth.

            “What will that do to him?”

            “Just give him a little extra boost. Like I said, it won’t harm him.” The grin fell from his face. “Now leave. Or Sammy here will lose his Mama. And he’s going to be hungry in about an hour.”

            Mary stared at the demon. “You promised.”

            “I’m gone in one minute,” the demon said. “You can come back in after five. Now go.”

            And Mary turned around and left. She leaned against the door, listening desperately as she counted. Those three hundred seconds lasted a lifetime.

            To her relief, when she opened the door again Sammy was in his crib, wide awake. He reached up for her and she picked him up, trying to wipe off the blood. He’d swallowed some of it for sure.

            Mary took a deep breath as she cradled Sammy against her. The blood had done something, but it would take time to find out what. But she would, and she would find out if there were any other children like Sammy. And she would protect them too.

           

Butterfly Effect: John was shocked to find out about Mary’s past, but he swallowed his fear and started learning, eventually discovering his family connection to that world. He was still more worried when Mary insisted they adopt three children, but he loved Andy and Max, and Ava was a daddy’s girl from day one. And years later, when the demon came back, they were all ready.

 

 

Jessica Moore

Way One—In Which Sam Winchester is not, in fact, an idiot

            Jess was taking the first tray of cookies out of the oven when the buzzer rang. “Jess? Sam? It’s Brady!”

            Jess put the tray down and wiped her hands before she went to the intercom. “Hi Brady! Come on up!” She hadn’t seen Brady in months; ever since his meltdown a few months back, Jess had asked Sam to meet him elsewhere. There was something about the way he looked at her that made her skin crawl.

            Part of her wished Sam was here. Stupid; she didn’t need Sam to protect her. She had two years of karate and knew where all the knives were. But there was something about Brady…

            Brady knocked on the door. “I smell cookies!” he called through the door.

            Jess laughed. “They’re for Sam, but I’ll get you one.” She opened the door. “Come on in, they’re still warm.”

            Brady moved to come in, but his feet stayed in place. “What?” He tried again, leaning forward, then hissed like he’d been burnt.

            “Brady?” Jess backed up. “What’s wrong?”

            His eyes went black. “Bitch! What did you do to me?!”

            Jess leaped for the phone, dialling Sam.

            He picked up on the first ring. “Hi baby—”

            “Sam, there’s something wrong with Brady! He can’t get off the mat, and his eyes…” Jess closed hers. “They went black.”

            “Get out of the apartment.” Sam’s voice was so frightened that Jess couldn’t believe it was the same person. “Climb down the fire escape and run, Jess.”

            As she fled, Jess had the phone pressed to her ear.

            “Dean, step on it!”

            “What’s wrong?”

            “Brady’s been possessed by a demon.”

            She could hear a car accelerating.

            “Jess, baby, are you outside?”

            Jess started down the stairs. She could hear Brady screaming with fury. “Going downstairs now. Sam, what is it?”

            “I’ll explain everything when I see you. We’re about twenty minutes out.”

            “Fifteen.” That was Dean.

            “Fifteen. Just head east, Jess. We’ll find you, and everything will be okay, alright?”

            Jess jumped the last few steps, wincing as her bare feet hit asphalt. “Is he…can he follow me?”

            “Not with that mat. Never thought my paranoia would pay off.”

            Jess kept running away from the setting sun. “Sam…can you stay on the phone?”

            “Of course I will. I’m so sorry Jess, so, so, sorry.”

            “Don’t be sorry. Be honest.”

            “I will be. I’ll tell you everything. I love you.”

            “I love you too. Sam, did you say demon?”

            “Yeah, I did.” Sam didn’t speak for a minute, and Jess slowed down, worried she was losing signal.

            “My family hunts creatures like him. We hunt monsters.”

Butterfly Effect: Jess becomes part of the hunting team, is more interested in forming a base like Bobby and Ellen but stays with Sam. Ruby attempts to flirt with Sam. Jess can see straight through her, and she’s stabbed. Apocalypse prevented because Sam drew a Devil’s Trap on the welcome mat Jess made him buy after he tracked mud in too many times.

 

Way Two—Jess is a hunter

            She never imagined the hunting life would find her again, and definitely not this way.  

            “Come here, Jess,” the demon hissed. “Going to make you all pretty for your King.”

            Jess didn’t know what he meant. All she knew was that the salt was right behind her.

            She threw the bag and while the demon in Brady’s body screamed, she started shouting an exorcism. She grabbed the water in the fridge—the jug she blessed every morning while Sam was on his run—and threw it, continuing to chant over his wails of pain.

            With one final scream, the demon smoked out, leaving Brady’s dead body behind. There was salt and water all over the room, and she had a shallow cut across her cheek. She’d been too slow to dodge the first blow.

            When Sam got home five hours later, the police were starting to pack up. “Brady tried to kill me, Sam,” Jess sobbed into his shoulder.

            Sam held her, looked at the salt still scattered on the floor, and took her back downstairs, where Dean was waiting. He opened the trunk…and pulled open the secret compartment.

            “Recognize any of this?” 

Butterfly Effect: Jess is revealed to be part of a hunting family that once worked with the Men of Letters. She joins back up reluctantly, and she and Sam work together on trying to get people out of the life. She and Dean become bros, and she helps the two of them work through their nonsense. Meg has little success with Sam, and when they find John they find the Colt and shoot Azazel dead. The Apocalypse plan doesn’t go as...well, planned, and Jess and Sam get married.  

Chapter Text

Madison

            She didn’t kill herself.

            She didn’t make Sam kill her. She couldn’t do it.

            Every full moon she locked herself in a storage container, driven deep into the woods by the Winchesters.

            She howled and screamed and writhed, but the walls were reinforced steel and nothing could get in or out and Madison was safe, she was fine.

            Her friends thought she’d become really interested in camping.

            She started working from home, stopped dating, kept herself to herself. She kept in touch with Sam and Dean, hoping every time they replied that there would be a cure. Experimental, highly deadly…it didn’t matter. She’d do it.

            Madison lived seven long years alone, every moon bringing more pain, but she hadn’t killed anyone. She’d found a way to keep that promise.

            And one day Sam Winchester came to her door with a huge, sad smile on his face.

            “Madison, there’s another way.”

            And they drove to a yellow house where a smiling man exclaimed over her and his pregnant wife held her close and promised that the trouble was over.

Butterfly Effect:  “And it was,” Madison concluded as she kissed her daughter’s head. “I found my way home here, and I found your Papa.” The silver necklace still burned her throat a little, but it didn’t matter. The love she felt for the little girl in her arms and the man standing at the door was much warmer.

 

Ash

            “Ash, c’mon.”

            “Ellen, we can’t leave the rabble here unattended.” One of the hunters gave Ash the finger and he laughed back. “See? Hooligans.”

            “We need pretzels, jackass.”

            It wasn’t until they got to the truck that Ellen revealed why she wanted him to come. “I’m worried about Sam and Dean. I just want you close in case we have to run to them.”

            “Has Bobby said anything?”

            “No, but that worries me more.” Ellen pulled in.

            “Let’s get a cake,” Ash said. “We can have a party for Sam. God knows you can’t cook.”

            Ellen’s scowl relieved him.

            *****
            They saw the smoke before they saw the ruins.

            The Roadhouse was gone. All that was left was a pile of burnt wood.

            Ellen let out a wordless cry of pain, and she stopped the car. Ash shoved the cake off his lap and got out of the car. He ran, even though he knew it was no good.

            Ellen caught him in her arms.

           “We’ve got to help them—”

           “We’ve got to get out of here,” Ellen said harshly. She was gasping, her body trembling. “They might still be here. We have to go. We have to. We can’t help…”

            Ash tried to struggle, but he knew she was right. The air stank of sulfur, and there were no signs of life.

           “We’ll go,” Ellen said. She was still holding him. “We’ll run for Bobby’s, okay honey?”

            She hadn’t called him that in a while.

          “All my stuff was there.”

          “I’m sorry, honey.”

Ash patted her hand. “Not your fault. We’ll kill these sons of bitches.” He remembered something. “Wait, we have to check the safe!”  

Butterfly Effect: Ash gets to live. He helps rebuild the Roadhouse and makes it impossible to get in if you’re a demon. He tries to help with Dean’s demon deal, and tracks down a ritual for summoning a person’s guardian angel (if they have one). He summons Cas, who speaks to Dean through a mind connection (no vessel). Cas grants him absolution from his deal without really thinking about it, and all hell breaks loose (but not Lucifer). Gabriel is forced to step in to save Destiel, and the Apocalypse looks very different than before.

 

Andy Gallagher

            “Andy, stay with me. Don’t leave my side, okay?” Sam kept his eyes trained on the walls. “I won’t let anything happen to you.”

            “You got it. I’m not splitting up. That’s what idiots do in horror movies.”

Butterfly Effect: Not much, but I liked Andy.

 

Sam Winchester

            “Sam, look out!”

            Somehow—maybe magic, maybe his freaky demon thing, Dean wasn’t sure—but Sam spun and deflected the knife. He took it in the shoulder and dropped, but Bobby shot the stabber in his shoulder before anything else could happen.

            Dean ran to Sam. “Sam, buddy, talk to me.”

            “Dean?” Sam winced, but his hand up and pressed against the blood.

            “It’s okay, Sammy.” Dean grabbed hold of him for a second, hugged him hard, careful not to hurt his shoulder more. “We’re here now, okay? It’s not even that bad. We’ll get you all cleaned up.”

            Azazel, watching from a few miles away, howled with rage as Bobby Singer subdued Jake fully. “Iron cuffs, you son of a bitch. Your demon stuff won’t work.”

            “It’s a challenge,” Sam coughed. “He wants us to kill each other.”

            “Well, he ain’t getting what he wants.”

            With a sudden lunge, Jake yanked himself free of Bobby and took off running. Bobby was so surprised that he didn’t raise his gun. “Well, there goes that idea.”

            Dean helped Sam to his feet. “We’ll keep you safe, Sammy,” he promised. “We’ll end this. It’s going to be okay.”  

Butterfly Effect: Dean doesn’t go to Hell. John becomes the Righteous Man, and the Apocalypse is way better because Lucifer just takes John Winchester the fuck out, because Righteous or not, he’s worse than God as a father.

Chapter Text

Victor Henriksen

            He made it out just before the blast.

            His bosses weren’t excited about the fact that the Winchesters were dead, but couldn’t exactly fault Victor for letting his prisoners get blown up.

            Victor was badly shaken, and he gratefully took the three months’ leave he’d saved up over the years. He spent the first month or so drinking, and the next two thinking. Thinking hard about the two men he’d nearly locked away for life.

            When he got back to work, he went through the cold case files. Some people laughed, called him obsessed. One of his old friends teased him for going ‘X-files’. Victor didn’t listen to them. He was searching for patterns in cases: missing persons, gruesome murders, sightings of creatures marked “WEIRDOS.”

            He did four years of careful research, planning and deep soul searching. He could just walk away. This was out of his jurisdiction for sure. But he respected people who dealt with the bad guys, and maybe these hunters could benefit from some law enforcement contacts.

He reached out through the FBI first, found other agents who knew he wasn’t crazy. Whenever they had a free moment between caseloads, they pooled their knowledge, talked about who to trust, what they could do to help.

Finally, when Victor thought they were ready, he reached out to the first name on his list.

            “This is Sheriff Mills.”

            “Hi Sheriff. My name’s Victor Henriksen. I’m with the FBI, and I was wondering if you knew Sam and Dean Winchester.”

            There was a pause. “What have those boys got into now?”

            “I…hunted with them once.”

            “You said Victor?”

            “Yes.”

            “My name’s Jody. I think we have a lot to talk about.”

            “I think so too.”  

Butterfly Effect: Victor and Jody begin integrating a police/fed group who know about hunters. They do this off the clock (of course), and some people even bring in lawyers and judges. When the Men of Letters starts up properly, Sam Winchester becomes the law liaison, and from that point on hunters have legal recourse and access to federal databases, which helps link a lot of cases. Dean refuses to stop calling Sam Scully for the rest of time.

 

Nancy Groves

            She made it out before the blast, but everyone she’d worked with was dead, and the demons lay in smouldering piles. A weaker woman would have withered.

            Nancy Groves was strong.

            True to her word, she had sex the next week with the woman she loved. Amelia had almost given up on her, with her hesitance and internalized homophobia. In fact, Amelia was on a date with Don when Nancy burst in.

            “Amelia, I’m sorry. I was stupid.”

            “Thank goodness,” Amelia said.

            It hurt Nancy to have her mother stop returning her calls. It hurt to give up church, especially when she knew for sure that evil lurked in physical form on Earth. But being in love didn’t hurt, and neither did moving to Kermit with Amelia, and finding a beautiful puppy they named Grace. When Grace had a litter, they could only keep one, and they named it Riot.

Butterfly Effect: Sam does run into them after Dean and Cas go to Purgatory, but instead of being in love with Amelia, he’s taken care of for a little while. Nancy has become a psychiatrist, and she helps Sam to face some of his mental health issues; his depression, his anxiety and his PTSD. It’s only a start, but it’s enough for Sam to start feeling some hope, and he begins looking for Dean, Kevin and Meg again. He finds Kevin, and they’ve finally found a lead on Meg when Dean and Cas return. Nancy and Amelia go on the run with them, they pick up Meg and Linda Tran, and keep going. When they find the Bunker, Nancy and Amelia stay for a while, and they keep Grace and Riot of course. Dean also (after some major resistance) starts getting treated for his own mental health.

 

Bela Talbot

            “What do I do?” Bela sobbed over the phone.

            “Bela, what do you expect us to do?!” She could hear the frustration in Dean’s voice, but there was an undercurrent of pity in it. They were facing the same gun. The difference was that Bela had about twenty minutes. Dean had more than twenty days.       

            “I…I don’t know.”

            “Listen, I…we can stay on the phone if you want.”

            An unexpected mercy, but one she couldn’t accept.

            “No. You don’t need a preview of—”

            A girl appeared in her room.

            “Who—who are you?!”

            “The name’s Ruby. Is your name Bela?”

            “Yes.”

            “Bela, who’s there?”

            “It’s—” Bela screamed when the woman’s eyes turned black.

            “Oh, keep it together,” the demon grumbled. “Is that one of the Winchesters on the phone?”

            Bela backed away.

            “Bela!”

            “I’m trying to help you, idiot.” The demon’s blond hair fell long on her shoulders. “Tell Sam it’s Ruby.”

            “Do you…does Sam know a Ruby?”

            She heard Dean groan. “Yeah, we do. Wait, is she there?”

            “Yes.”

            Ruby yanked the phone from her hand. “Dean, listen up, okay. I think I’ve found a loophole with Bela here.” She looked at Bela. “You sold your soul because your father molested you, right?”

            Bela flinched, remembering being Abbie. Being so alone and hurt, and the nice girl who said she would help.

            “And Lilith still won’t let you go even though you’ve tried to deal.”

            “Yes.”

            Ruby clapped her hands. “Then we’ve got it.”

            “What?”

            “Deals made to save a soul, not just sell it…those can be broken. With a spell. It just has to be a pure motive.”

            “Can freaks have pure motives?” Bela asked bitterly.

            Ruby actually looked sympathetic. “Yes, we can.” She yanked Bela to her feet. “Come on, we’ve only got fifteen minutes.” She turned her attention back to the phone. “I’ll call you in fifteen to tell you what happened. If it works…” she hung up.

            “Are you really going to help me?”

            “Yes, I am.” Ruby’s eyes turned black. “I want Lilith dead too.”

            It would be almost two years before Bela stood in the church at Sam’s side and realized that she’d misinterpreted the demon’s words. But it was too late, and Lucifer was rising.

 

Butterfly Effect: Ruby fakes that Dean wasn’t ‘worthy’ to be saved, when in reality she just saved Bela to get Sam and Dean to stop looking for a solution. Bela and Sam have a bitter relationship for the three months Dean is in Hell (he gave in faster because it wasn’t Bela that they were trying to make him torture), but when Dean gets back they become romantically involved. Ruby’s role is more dealer than anything romantic, and when she’s dead Bela helps Sam through his recovery and through being a Vessel.

 

Dean Winchester (technically takes place in season 2)

            Dean stood up, his offering buried, and waited at the crossroads.

            No one appeared.

            “Damn it, come on! I’ve got a soul up for grabs, doesn’t anyone want it?!”

            Maybe he wasn’t worth anything.

            “Hello Dean.”

            Dean whipped around.

            A man with dark hair and wearing a trench coat stood behind him. There was a woman next to him with bright red hair.

            “Alright, let’s do this,” Dean said, mouth suddenly dry. He’d never heard of two demons showing up to take someone’s soul. Would they duel?

            “We aren’t demons,” the woman said.

            “The hell you aren’t. What are you doing here, then?”

            “Killing the demon who was going to take your soul.” The man snapped his fingers, and a dead body appeared, its open eyes black.

            “Then what are you?”

            Both of their eyes glowed blue, and the stars were blotted out by…

            Wings…

            “No way,” Dean whispered. “You’re…”

            “My name is Castiel. I am an angel of the Lord.”

            “I’m Anna. Also an angel.”

            “Uh…what do you want?”

            The man drew a jar from inside his coat. Whatever was inside shone so brightly it hurt Dean’s eyes. “We want to return your brother. Hell’s plans for you both are not to the liking of our leader.”

            “Your leader? Like—like God?”

            “Not at the moment,” Anna replied. “There’s some trouble in Heaven. We don’t want any part in it, and we don’t want you and your brother mixed up in it either.”

            “My sister is being oblique purposefully,” Castiel said, glaring at the redhead. “We will return Sam regardless, but we are asking for your help, Dean Winchester.”

            “What do you need?”

            Castiel’s eyes glowed again. “We need you to say no.”

 

Butterfly Effect/Explanation: Anna never fell, and because she didn’t she learned about the real Apocalypse plan. She decided to run, and ran into Gabriel. He recruited her, Castiel and Balthazar to stop the Apocalypse happening. They didn’t get there in time to stop Sam from dying, but they intercepted his soul. Dean, Sam, Bobby, Ellen and Jo join them in their quest to make sure none of the Apocalypse happens, and Destiel happens because of course it does. 

Chapter Text

Pamela Barnes

Way One: Pamela looks away because Castiel understands how to speak to humans

            “I don’t scare easily Castiel.”

            It has nothing to do with fear. Your eyes will burn out. You can’t see my true form.

            “You’re bluffing.”

            “I am not. What is it you wish to know? Keep your eyes closed and I will tell you. You are of good heart.”

            “What are you?”

            “I am an angel. Do you know Dean Winchester?”

            “Yes.”

            “I will come to you. Keep your eyes closed until I say.”

            Pamela jerked out of the trance, her eyes shut tightly.

            “Pamela? You alright?”

            There was a crash of thunder, then a crash of her front door. Pamela kept her eyes shut, but she could hear the men leap up, cock their guns.

            “Pamela, you can open your eyes.”

            The first thing Pamela saw was a man in a rumpled trench coat and intense blue eyes. The next was the halo above his head.

            “Holy Jesus.”

            “No, I’m Castiel.” Castiel looked at Dean. “Hello, Dean.”

Butterfly Effect: Pamela gets to be not blind and survive. She goes on with her life, and teases Destiel hardcore. When they meet up with Anna, she convinces Cas not to chase her, and Anna stays human and keeps fighting. (Dean and Anna do not have a thing).

 

Pamela Saves the World

            No demon comes when Pamela is keeping vigil. She pulls Sam and Dean back into their bodies, and glares at the Reaper. “Not today.”

            “I understand,” the Reaper—Tessa?—says. “But don’t fear death, Pamela Barnes. It was only a dream.”

            She always had, before. She stayed away from hunting as much as she could, ran from involvement, because being hurt could mean dying. She had nightmares about it for a year, endless cold and empty. She’s a psychic. Who’s to say that it wasn’t a vision of what was to come?

            Apparently a Reaper.

            When the Reaper is gone, she locks Sam in a room and gets every last detail from him, all of what he’s doing with Ruby, all of it. The knowledge sends her into one of the most intense visions of her life. Even blind, the light from the portal to Hell burns her, terrifies her.

            She doesn’t know how to stop it. She doesn’t know if anyone will let her.

            But she’s going to try, because she’s not afraid of death anymore.

Butterfly Effect: Pamela gets Sam to snap out of it, and they figure out Ruby’s game. That leads them to discover Heaven’s involvement in the plan. They stop Cas from getting captured, and they go rogue.           

 

Kate & Adam Milligan

John Isn’t An Asshole

            When John came back, Kate was terrified.

            She’d never wanted him back in the first place, but Adam had begged her to at least call. “I want to hear from him that he doesn’t want me,” her twelve year old begged.

            And John came back and cried when he saw Adam. “I’m so sorry,” he told him. “I’m sorry that I left.” He looked at Kate. “I should have checked in on you.”

            “I didn’t tell you about him.” Her throat was dry. What if John insisted on custody?

            He didn’t. And he told her and Adam exactly why.

            Adam was terrified of monsters already, and John’s avowal that they were real gave him nightmares for months. John did teach him how to combat the worst ones, and gave Kate a silver knife, a gun with silver bullets, and some basic training.

            He came back once a year on Adam’s birthday until Adam turned sixteen. Then he stopped coming. Kate finally called after three months, worried something was seriously wrong, and was dumbfounded when a man named Dean answered. His son, Dean.

            Kate kept in touch with Sam and Dean as the next year passed, learning more about the man who’d fathered her child. And she was there when Sam and Dean came to her door in the middle of the night to tell her that John was dead.

            She saw John in their faces, but she saw a long-dead woman too. She saw a legacy even they didn’t understand.

            “Is Adam in danger?”

            “We don’t know,” Sam said honestly. “You’re alive, so probably not. But you two should hide.”

            “Where?”

            That was how they ended up in Canada. Kate got a job as a nurse, Adam went to school. Their lives were mostly normal. They heard from Sam and Dean sporadically, mostly calls to check in, see how they were doing.

            Five years after John’s death, she got a call.

            “You need to run again, Kate. The angels are coming for you.”

            Kate didn’t ask questions. She picked her son up at McGill and they flew to Britain. Once there, Kate risked calling back.

            A voice she hadn’t heard before answered.

            “Katherine Milligan, my name is Castiel. My friends are trying to keep you safe.  It will be better for you if you don’t call them again. When it is safe, we will come for you.”

            Kate hung up the phone and looked at Adam. Her son was a grown man now, taller than her, and she knew that hiding forever wouldn’t be an option. They both had lives to live.

            But John had done everything he could to keep them safe. His sons were trying to do the same.

            So Kate got a job again, this time giving a false name, and Adam transferred to Oxford for pre-med. He met a girl named Carrie, and they got married after they dated for three years.

            In the back of the wedding reception stood two American men and an angel who looked uncomfortable without a trenchcoat. They hardly knew the groom anymore, and it took Kate a moment to recognize them. But that was how they wanted it.

            Their brother was safe, and that was all that mattered.

Butterfly Effect: Adam was never an option for a backup vessel. Sam said yes earlier (they found the rings faster), and leapt into the Cage with Lucifer without Michael. Seeing this, Michael decided not to blow up humanity, and actually try out being a decent person for once in his existence.

Chapter Text

Jo and Ellen Harvelle

Way Number One

            “Hey, Eric? You know those two strong female characters we have?”

            “Ellen and Jo?”

            “Yeah. Let’s not kill them, okay? They’ve got an interesting story line.”

            “But people hate Jo.”

            “No, people hate that she’s a “threat” to their incest fantasy. Or Destiel. Just stop writing her as a love interest. Either give her another one, or make her and Dean have an adult conversation about their feelings that’s actually convincing.”

            “You know what? You’re right. Maybe that’ll give people some hope during the series finale.”

            “Yeah, about that…we might be getting renewed.”

            “We’re getting WHAT NOW?!”

 

Way Number Two

            “Hellhounds, Dean,” Meg grinned.

            “Wait!” Sam held up his hands.

            “Sam, what are you doing?”

            “Lucifer just wants to talk?” Sam said, ignoring Dean.

            “Yep. He says he already knows you don’t want to say yes.” Meg’s eyes turned black. “I told him I could convince you, but he wants you in one piece.”

            Sam thought fast. “Okay. We’ll talk. But everyone’s coming with me.”

            “He didn’t agree to that.”

            “I’m not doing anything behind my family’s back anymore.”

            Meg snapped, and the hellhound’s heavy breathing faded away. “Your choice, Sam.” She motioned him towards a building down the street, tall and somber. “He’s in there.”

            “Ladies first,” Sam smirked.

            Meg sauntered towards the building, and Sam followed her, Dean on his heels. Ellen grabbed his arm.

            “Do you know what you’re doing?”

            “I do. I promise.” I’m not watching anyone else I love get chewed up by hellhounds.

Butterfly Effect: When meeting with Lucifer, Sam figures out that the gun won’t work without using it (if Lucifer hates demons so much, he wouldn’t give one the power to kill him). They bargain for a six months’ surrender in Detroit in exchange for Sam’s family being safe, and they leave before Death is brought back.

 

Way Number Three (Which is similar to Way Number Two)

            “I can’t walk, I can’t help,” Jo said.

            “We’re not just going to let you die!” Dean snarled, but his voice broke in the middle.

            Sam closed his eyes. Please, help us.

            The lights flickered and Sam whipped around.

            “Who the hell are you?!” Dean snapped.         

            “Lucifer,” Sam whispered. No, he hadn’t meant his prayer to be heard by him

            The archangel ignored them and stalked towards Jo. Ellen threw herself in front of her injured daughter.

            “Don’t you touch her, you goddamned Devil.”

            Lucifer actually smiled. “An accurate summation, Mrs. Harvelle.” He froze her in place and examined Jo. “Hellhound?”

            Jo didn’t speak.

            Lucifer seemed to know already. “My apologies. Meg can be…over zealous.” He reached out. “Please remain still, I’m still new at healing human bodies.”

            Sam couldn’t move, couldn’t even cry out, but he wasn’t sure if that was a spell or his own horror. All he could do was watch as Lucifer put his hand on Jo’s forehead. A soft blue light moved through her body, and her wound disappeared. Jo took a deep, shaky breath, and sat up.

            “Is your pain gone?”

            “Yeah.”

            “Excellent.” Lucifer faced Sam.

            “You did that so I would say yes,” Sam whispered.

            Lucifer waved his hand and Ellen immediately crouched beside her daughter, checking her wound. “Of course not, Sam,” he said. He actually sounded hurt. “They’re your family. I know they mean a lot to you. And I don’t want to force you.”

            Sam took a shaky breath. Dean was by his side. He could see the Colt in his brother’s pocket…and understood.

            He pulled it out and showed it to Lucifer. “This isn’t going to work on you, is it?”

            Lucifer’s smile was sad, and for a moment he looked truly old. “No, it won’t. Hang on to it though, it will keep you safe from other creatures.”

            “Sam, what are you doing?!”   

            “I figured it out,” Sam answered Dean. “If Crowley’s right and Lucifer hates demons, why would he let one hold onto something that could kill him?” He turned to Lucifer. “You’re not stupid.”

            “I’m glad you think so,” Lucifer said, his lips twisting.

            Sam gave the gun back to Dean. “Is there any way you would stop this?”

            “I can’t, Sam.”

            “You can. I know you don’t believe it, but there is a way out.”

            “Do you think I want to be playing the role my father set out for me?!” Lucifer’s voice rose. “Of course not! But if my brother wants me to fight him…well, I’ll give him what he wants.”

            “There has to be something!” Sam wracked his brains. “We’re supposed to be like you two, right? Well, my brother’s here. He still…he still believes in me, for some reason. We’re still family, even after all I did.” He swallowed the lump in his throat. “Maybe there’s still a chance for you and Michael.”

            Lucifer looked away. “Do you have any idea how much I want to believe that?”

            Sam almost said yes, but he choked back the word.

            “You can say the word in conversation, Sam. That’s not how this works.”

            “Oh. Then…yes. I know. Maybe Chuck could help?”

            “Chuck?”

            “Chuck Shurley. The prophet.”

            “There is no prophet by that name.”

            “Charles, I guess. It’s a nickname.”

            Lucifer shook his head, perplexed. “The prophet who should be now is named Kevin Tran. The one before him died three years ago, a woman named Teresa.”

            “All the other feathery douchebags know him,” Dean put in. “Raphael and Zach…and Cas.”

            Lucifer snapped his fingers and Cas appeared. “Castiel, have you met the prophet?”

            “Yes,” Cas said. He looked bewildered. “His name is Chuck.”

            Lucifer froze. “It can’t be.”

            “What do you mean?” Ellen said.

            “All angels know the prophets,” Lucifer said slowly. “They were inscribed on our eyes. But I have never seen the name Charles Shurley.”

            “Maybe he has a different name?”

            “As I said, it should be Kevin Tran. And he would only be about twelve.”

            Sam stared at him. “Then who is Chuck?”

            “Maybe a false prophet?” Jo suggested.

            “Not if everyone recognizes him as a prophet,” Lucifer whispered. “Everyone who’s been in Heaven since I fell. Castiel…where is he?”

            “He isn’t…brother, that can’t be.” Cas held up the amulet. “This would glow in his presence.”

            “He is the Almighty,” Lucifer said. “He can do as he likes.” He straightened. “Where is he, Castiel?”

Butterfly Effect: Lucifer finds Chuck and gets through to him. Chuck actually takes responsibility for his actions, gets Michael and Lucifer in a room and sorts out their angst as a family. You know, the way they’re supposed to. Ellen and Jo live happily ever after. Lucifer becomes the weird family member that Crowley might have become.

 

Anna

            She’s cut loose from the torture at last, instructed to find the Winchesters. To protect them, since Castiel is clearly not up to it. They need to survive to be vessels.

            At first Anna does offer to kill Sam. She has a knife at her throat the minute after, but she states her case. “You won’t suffer,” she promises. “I’ll make it stop.”

            Sam does consider it. But he refuses, and Anna is okay with that. She has to leave, then; she can’t stay, it will draw attention. But she promises to return if they need her.

            And on a tip from Castiel, she flies, following a trail of bodies and candy until she finds the Trickster. “Any advice on how to disappear, brother?”

            The Trickster laughs, and takes her with him.

Butterfly Effect: Anna is present at Elysium, and she stabs Lucifer to protect Gabriel. She manages to track down God, and convinces him to get Michael in line. She and Dean are not in a relationship, but she does inform him for sure that Cas is in love with him. Destiel happens, Anna wins, the end.

 

Gabriel

Way Number One

            Of fucking course he wasn’t going to kill his brother. He’d already made that clear, more than once.

            But he wasn’t going to let Kali die either.

            Or the Winchesters.

            Lucifer seeing through his trick surprised him. Having his brother turn and stab him with his own blade (well, a facsimile of his own blade)…that surprised him even more.

            It hurt, too.

            Gabriel let out a loud, heart-broken shriek, mourning his brother. He’d held on to some hope that his brother wasn’t totally lost. But the Morning Star would never have hurt him. He was Satan now, fully.

            Gabriel almost wished he was dying.

            But he didn’t. He made sure to lay fake wings on the ground. He lingered for a moment, saw Lucifer stare at his dead body. Gabriel hoped that he would react somehow. And Lucifer did cry, but he wiped away the tears and walked out without a word.

            Gabriel set his jaw. Well, that was the end. No more hope. Maybe the Winchesters could beat Lucifer. Maybe. But he sure couldn’t.

            So he met up with Kali a hundred miles away, and whisked the two of them to Pandora. They’d both earned a vacation. And he had a lot of explaining to do.

Butterfly Effect: Gabriel does leave, and his relationship with Kali blossoms. He’s yanked back to Earth by Kevin being in danger the first time, and is forced to sort out the nonsense. He heals Cas, gets the Leviathans crammed back into Purgatory, and takes over Heaven. By that, I mean he and Kali sort out the faction situation, make it impossible for angels to kill each other, and kick Naomi’s ass to kingdom come.

 

Way Two

            He sat up, coughing and choking. Kali was sitting next to him, in the middle of a broken room.

            “How?”

            Kali held up the vial. “You’re mine now.”

            Like he hadn’t always been.

            Kali shifted so his head was in her lap. “Your brother is gone.”         

            “He killed me. He’s not my brother anymore.”

            “Loki—Gabriel. Am I no longer yours?”

            “Not the same thing. I know you would never really want to hurt me. Why do you think I gave you a fake blade? But Lucifer…he’s not who he was. That part of him is gone.” Gabriel tried to sit up, but fell back with a grunt of pain. “Alright, I’ve got to go.”

            “Where?”

            “I’m going after the Winchesters. They might actually be right. It’s worth a shot, at least.”

            “I’m coming with you.”

            “You don’t have to.”

            “Do you think you can stop me?”

            “That’s my girl.”

Butterfly Effect: Gabriel and Kali join the fight. Kali is limited in power only because Lucifer is of a different power source; she can fight the Horsemen, and does. She also works to minimize the damage done to the innocent (though quite a few child abusers get killed in the Apocalyptic weather). Gabriel manages to knock both Michael and Lucifer into the Cage, saves Sam and Adam, and everyone lives happily ever after.

 

Way Three

            “I’ve been riding the pine a long time…”

            “Gabriel,” Lucifer interrupted him. “I’m sure you have this speech planned out. But I really have places to be.”

            “Stop. Please.”

            “I can’t.”

            “Can’t or won’t?”

            “Does it really matter? It ends the same way.”

            “It doesn’t have to. Look at me! I’ve gotten away with not being an archangel for 3,000 years.”

            Lucifer spread his wings. “Do you see what he’s done?”

            His brother’s wings were scarred and broken. Hey were still usable, still functional, but that was all they were.

            “I…I’m sorry, Lucifer. I’m not excusing what he did. I’m not. You have to believe me.”

            “I would like to. But as you’re currently standing in front of me, trying to kill me…”

            Gabriel took a deep breath. “I’m not in front of you. I’m behind you.” He snapped, let the image fade away.

            Lucifer actually laughed as he turned. “Well, well! You’re getting better, aren’t you?”

            “What do we do, Lucifer? How do we get out of this?”

            Lucifer hesitated, and then lowered his blade. “You really think there’s a way out?”

            “Absolutely.” And if there wasn’t, he would make one.

            “I don’t want to hurt Sam.” His brother’s voice was pitiful, and Gabriel risked getting closer, putting a hand on his brother’s shoulder.

            “Come on, brother. Come to the not-dark-side.”

            “What are you talking about?”

            “Right. We need to get you humanized.”

Butterfly Effect: Gabriel (with Team Free Will’s reluctant help) starts introducing Lucifer to human things. It’s a bit hard to hide the presence of two archangels, but Lucifer has a solution; if he becomes human, he doesn’t have to fight Michael. He gives Gabriel his Grace, but not before he resurrects Ellen and Jo and frees Nick’s soul, who really just wants to be dead. Humanity freaks him out, but he ends up enjoying it for two reasons. The first is that he realizes how in love with a certain hunter he is, and the second is that it actually shocks Michael out of the fight; his brother was willing to become the thing he hated so that they wouldn’t have to fight. Happy ending, Samifer is a thing that I can’t believe I wrote, and Destiel of course.

Chapter Text

Rufus Turner

Way Number One

            “Wait…why are we killing Rufus again?”

            “Because someone has to die for emotional effect.”

            “Yeah, but you’re bringing back Ellen and Jo again in the next episode. And they’re gonna die.”

            “Good point. Let’s not.”

 

Way Number Two

            Before the Khan worm could leap, Bobby shot it dead.

            “Damn creepy crawly!” Rufus snapped, but he was clearly shaken.

            “Never heard of anything like that,” Bobby said. He helped Rufus to his feet.

            Sam looked at his dead grandfather. “What do we do now?”

            “Find the son of a bitch’s mother.”

Butterfly Effect: Bobby gets to actually keep his friend, and they work out their differences about the random girl in the past who died (person of your choice, I go with a daughter). He joins them in the fight against Eve, and is the one who manages to get through to Cas and stops him from going after Purgatory. He and Bobby become platonic life partners, and because of this Bobby doesn’t die from a head shot.

 

Balthazar

Way Number One: Balthazar gets through to Cas

            “We have a Judas in our midst.”

            Balthazar steeled himself. “No, you don’t.”

            “What do you mean?”
            “You know what I mean, Cas. You know it’s me. Damn it, what’s happened to you?”

            “You betrayed me.”

            “I am trying to save you, brother! And so are the Winchesters, and you know it!”

            “Save me from what?” Cas’ impassive mask slipped, just a bit, maybe just enough.

            “Doing something you will regret! I know what you’re trying to do; and maybe once I would have been all for it. But you are going to lose yourself, Castiel. Is that worth it?”

            “What am I worth if I don’t?”

            “You’re worth something to me, Cassie.” Balthazar gripped his brother’s arms. “You’re my brother, and I know I left you. We all left you. And you’re trying to be alright without us, but you don’t have to be.”

            The mask slipped further, and Balthazar saw the carefully hidden hurt in blue eyes.

            “Come on, brother,” Balthazar whispered. “I know you want what’s best, but that isn’t what you’re doing. You can fix this.”

            Without warning, Cas sagged against him. Balthazar caught him, held him tight.

            “It’s going to be alright, brother. We’ll fix this.”

 

Butterfly Effect: In the biggest plot twist of the century, Balthazar manages to be halfway decent at negotiation. They all sit down with Raphael and Crowley in a warded room and work out a truce. Balthazar argues that Hell is Hell, Heaven is Heaven and Earth is Earth; it’s time to separate the three. Raphael finally agrees to try and give angels more free will, Crowley learns to be satisfied with the size Hell is, and Cas volunteers to Fall so that there will be less discord in Heaven. Balthazar takes his place in the new government, and actually makes Raphael smile a couple of times. Cas takes his place as a human, at Dean’s side.

 

Way Number Two

            “Hey Misha, do you think Cas would ever kill someone he loved like a brother?”

            “I mean, he has done that.”

            “No, I’m not talking about random angels. I’m talking about Balthazar.”

            “Oh fuck no.”

            “Right. Why?”

            “No matter what Balthazar did to him, Cas would believe he deserved it.”

            “That’s morbid as fuck.”         

            “Cas is morbid as fuck this season.”

            “So ix-nay on the Balthazar kill?”
            “Absolutely. If anything, he’d probably kiss him. I mean, that’s what he wants to do to Dean, who’s his brother, right?”

            “Yeah, I know. That’s stupid.”

            “Damn right it is.”

Butterfly Effect: And then Balthazar lives.

Chapter Text

Bobby Singer

Way Number One: Cas is found earlier

            The nurse looked sympathetically at Dean. “I know he’s important to you. Maybe…maybe you could ask Emmanuel for help.”

            “Emmanuel?”

            “Yes, he lives nearby with his wife. He’s a powerful healer.”

            Dean looked over at Sam, who was pressing against his hand, looking far more like his nine year old self than he had in ages.

            “Sammy, I’m going to check out this lead, okay?”

            Sam nodded, his eyes riveted to Bobby.

            Two hours later, Dean returned shaking with Cas and Meg. Sam didn’t believe it was him at first, but when he reached out and touched Bobby, healing the bullet wound and waking up the old hunter, Sam let out a deep sigh of relief.

            Bobby spent ten minutes scolding Cas and two minutes hugging the shocked angel. There were still remnants of the wall in Sam’s head at this point, and the grateful hunter fell asleep the moment Cas and Meg built it back up.

Butterfly Effect: Bobby tells them what the Leviathans are doing, and they figure it out more quickly. Frank doesn’t die either, and they break into headquarters and meet Charlie that way. They dash with the tablet, accidentally make Kevin a prophet (Bobby can’t stop them from being stupid 24/7), find him quick and take him and his mom into hiding. They bring the Leviathans down with the blood of three weapon, but Charlie uses it instead and she throws it, which means no one goes to Purgatory.

 

Way Number Two: Not A Hallucination

            Sam pressed on his hand desperately.

            “I told you Sammy-boy, that’s not going to work anymore.” Lucifer was perched in the chair next to him. There was something almost sympathetic in his eyes. “I’m not making Daddy go bye-bye.”

            “Then why would it be happening?” God that hurt, it hurt and he was so tired. “If this is a hallucination, it is up to you. So it’s not, you’re not real, so I can make you go away.”

            “Decent argument,” Lucifer replied. He wasn’t laughing anymore. “Sam, you’re partly right. This isn’t a hallucination.”

            He admitted it.

            “But I am real.” Lucifer brought his hands together. “We’re still connected, you and I, but the wall protected you from that influence. Death didn’t tell your brother because he didn’t want to scare him. Now I can appear to you in your mind, but I am physically still in the Cage.”

            Sam looked away. That made more sense. But it still couldn’t be real.

            “You want me to prove it? Fine. I will.” Lucifer stood and walked into Bobby’s room.

            Sam leapt up and ran after him. Just a hallucination. But if Bobby got hurt…

            Lucifer was standing over Bobby’s bed. Before Sam could do anything, the Devil touched Bobby’s forehead.

            Bobby jerked awake with a shout.

            Sam stared, frozen.

            “Sam? What happened?”

            Sam looked at Lucifer.

            “Told you I was real.”

            This is not like you, Sam whispered, the Enochian easier than English right now.

            You should not lose your true father, Lucifer replied. He looked truly sympathetic now. Even you do not deserve that.

            Sam wanted to run. He wanted to fight.

            He knew he couldn’t do either.

            Bobby’s gaze followed Sam’s, and the old man jerked. “You’re him, aren’t you?”

            “You can see him?” Sam could hardly breathe. No, no, no…

            “Get the hell away from my boy!”

            “Sorry, Mr. Singer, but I don’t like being in the Cage any more than your kid did. I think I might be here to stay.” Lucifer moved away from the bed. “It’s noisy in there.”

Butterfly Effect: Sam walks a delicate edge between sanity and insanity for a while; he knows that Lucifer is real, but his torturer being real and present (even if he can’t hurt him physically) is very hard to deal with. Lucifer hates the Leviathans, though, and helps them work to get rid of them. He and Sam reach a tenuous peace, but neither of them find the situation ideal. Cas and Meg show up (Meg found him by accident), and they separate Sam and Lucifer, sending the Devil to a dimension free of humans, where he could potentially create life. The dimension is sealed off, and Sam gets to sleep. Yes, that was partly inspired by (SPOILER SCREECH).

 

Way Number Three: Two Inches

            Bobby ducked just as the bullet whizzed towards him. Too damn close. He fired back twice. He knew it wouldn’t do much good, but it was the principle. Couldn’t let the monsters think he was scared of them. Scared of how close that bullet had come.

            And of course he couldn’t let his frantic sons know either.

Butterfly Effect: They drive immediately to Frank, and using that intel figure out da plan. Similar vein to Way 1, except with the extra downtime of not being in the hospital, Bobby keeps up a passive interest in the supernatural, and hears about a remarkable healer. He personally drives to bring back a very confused Emmanuel, but he’s Cas by the time he’s in Dean’s arms.

Way Four: See Rufus (Chapter 

 

Frank Devereaux

            The trailer was covered in blood, it was even his blood type.

            It was that attention to detail that had kept Frank alive all this time.

            He stepped back to survey his work one last time. He had plenty of enemies besides the Leviathans, and there was enough here to make them think twice.

            He hoped Sam and Dean would recognize the differences too. Now that Bobby was dead, those two were the best hope the world had.

            And wasn’t that a comforting thought.

            He’d pop up again in a week. The fake hard drive would lead the Leviathan astray, and Sam and Dean could get along without him for that long.

            He bowed his head for a minute. Somewhere in that trailer was a picture of Julie and the twins. It was the only picture he’d kept all these years, and he would never have left it if he was still alive.

            Which is why he had to do it now.

            That didn’t stop it hurting like a bitch, but he had to go.

            Frank smiled and left the trailer. Those damn goo monsters weren’t going to get him today.

Butterfly Effect: Frank shows up when Sam and Dean meet Charlie, and convinces Charlie to stay and help him hack things. He does not let them use the tablet. There’s another way to kill the Leviathans, because the other way was bullshit. When the Leviathans have been taken care of, Frank and Charlie start running a hunter’s network; Charlie’s about the same age as his daughter would be. Kevin gets to go to Harvard and becomes President when he grows up.

Chapter Text

Samandriel

            “Castiel?” Samandriel’s bloody, brutalized face was somewhat hopeful.         

            Kill him. Naomi’s voice. Cas moved to do it, but something stopped him.

            He’s innocent.

            He knows too much. He gave up information.

            Then a memory came into his head. Lucifer whispering Hello brother. Sam’s madness, the voice of pain. Sam and Samandriel. He couldn’t save Sam.

            He pushed back in his head as hard as he could, gritting his vessel’s teeth. “We must run, brother.”

            “I cannot…”

            “Cas?” It was Sam and Dean, of course, of course.

            “Help my brother,” Cas ordered. “Protect him. I have to leave.”  

Butterfly Effect: Naomi confronts Dean and Sam when they go to find the tablets, but Cas manages to stop her with Meg’s help. The angel tablet is useful, and Kevin begins looking into it. Everyone retreats to the Bunker (yes, that includes Kevin). Cas looks to confirm that Kevin’s mother is actually dead, finds out she’s alive and brings her back to the Bunker. They don’t look for Metatron, the Trials don’t kill Sam, and he and Dean make up anyways. When Samandriel heals, he starts learning more about humanity and he works with Cas to make Heaven better (with Naomi is gone, it’s easier).

 

Meg

Way One: Meg’s Got The Power!

            Meg groaned as the blade sliced her arm. After a year of torture, it surprised her that anything could still hurt.

            She stumbled back, but Crowley was almost on top of her. In desperation she threw up her hands and yelled out a spell that her father had taught her.

            Her powers, badly weakened by the year of torture, were still enough to send Crowley flying. Meg started towards him, intent on finishing what she had started, but he snapped out. A flash went off behind her.

            Castiel.

            She ran after Sam.

Butterfly Effect: Meg keeps Cas there and makes Cas and Dean have an actual conversation. Cas confesses that he’s deeply confused, because he loves Dean and he’s come to care for Meg. Naomi shows up, intent on stopping Cas from escaping with the tablet, but Meg just stabs her. They consider continuing closing the Gates of Hell, but Meg persuades them not to. Meg and Dean work out a ‘custody’ arrangement of Cas for a while, but it ends in healthy polyamory (well, as healthy as it can be when they argue as much as they do—it tends to end in sex).

 

Way Two: Crowley Dies

            (Similar to above, Meg uses the spell, but it pins Crowley to the wall, stopping him from escaping).

            Meg let her eyes turn black, let her wings rise high. “I’m a daughter of a Prince of Hell, jackass. I’m going to reclaim my throne.”

            She slashed her hand through the air, and Crowley exploded in a burst of fire.

            “Nice work, niece.”

            Meg whirled. “Dagon!”

            “Relax!” Her father’s sister—Dagon, who’d taught her all her tricks—stood there. “So you got out.”

            “Yes. No thanks to any of you.”

            “We told Crowley he could have the throne, and we wouldn’t interfere.” Dagon sighed. “That meant letting him have you. But you had the strength to kill him all along.”

            “So what happens now? Do you take over?”

            “Nah. Not in the mood for ruling Hell. Besides, I think you’ve earned the right.”

            “I don’t want it.”

            “Too bad. You’ll have to figure it out.” Dagon paused. “If you need us, call. We will help you, Meg.”

            Meg nodded and watched her aunt disappear. A smile started to grow on her face.

            “The King is dead. Long live the Queen.”

Butterfly Effect: Meg takes over Hell, ruling as Queen. Because she’s in charge, Cas is able to negotiate a deal concerning souls, demonic activity on Earth, etc. In return, Meg helps Cas overthrow Naomi, and gives him enough power to revive currently dead family (Ellen, Jo, Bobby, Mary, Ash, Pamela). Meg/Dean/Cas still happens, they just kinda hang out in Hell. No Trials, and Sam and Dean sort out their shit like adults for once. Meg is both beloved and feared, just the way she likes it.

 

Benny

Way Number One

            “Seriously, we need to get rid of Buckleming.”

            “I know, I know.”

            “They want to kill Benny.”

            “The fuck?”

            “I know, right? Benny never did anything to anyone.”

 

Way Number Two

            “I was never any good up there anyways.”

            “Benny!” Sam rushed back, grabbed the vampire’s hand. “Dean needs you.”

            “He has his angel. And you. He don’t need me for anything.”

            “He loves you. I’m...” Sam choked. “I’m probably going to die soon, and I don’t know if Cas will come back. Just…just please. You were good for my brother, and I wouldn’t let you be. Please don’t make him pay for that.”

            Benny gripped his hand. “I need help, Sam.”

            “You’ll get it,” Sam promised.

            “Okay.”

Butterfly Effect: With Benny there to ease the way between Dean and Cas, they figure out what’s going on with Metatron, and manage to stop him. The three fuck out the sexual tension (to Sam’s relief), and the Trials don’t go through because Naomi does warn them in time. While at the Bunker, Sam makes it his new mission to find a cure for vampirism; in the mean time, Benny drinks his blood. They become good bros, and Denstiel has a fine life, both before and after Benny is a vampire. Benny also becomes good friends with Alex, and helps her deal with being among vampires for so long.

 

Sarah Blake

Way Number One

            And on the day ‘Clip Show’ was written, the writers decided that there was literally no need to kill Sarah, because there were a million other victims that were a) not Sarah, b) male, and c) not Sam’s love interests. Instead, the viewers mourned the death of Barnes (cosplayer from season 5) and were left to wonder about Sarah. Their hopes were realized when she was brought back during season 9, and she and Sam reconnected.

 

Way Number Two

            “We’ve got everything set up, you’ll be okay,” Sam reassured Sarah. Then a thought struck him. “Hey, how long have you been in this room?”

            “A couple of days. Why?”

            Sam grabbed her hand. “We’ve got to move. Dean, we need to go to the car.”

            “You thinking hex bag?”

            Sam nodded as he hurried Sarah out the door. “We’ll come back for your stuff,” he explained. “You’ll be safer in our car.”

            “What’s a hex bag?”

            “Long distance magic. It makes sense.”

            When the phone rang, they were a mile away from the hotel at a Denny’s.

            “Crowley,” Dean snarled.

            “Sam, Dean. Have you seen my lovely surprise?”

            “Sure have!” Dean winked at Sarah, who was showing Sam pictures of her daughter over pancakes. “Thanks, it was nice to catch up.”

            There was a pause.

            “She’s not dead, is she?”

            “Nice try. Come on, Sam doesn’t trust you. And he figured it out even with a fever.” Dean lowered his voice. “Listen to me very carefully, asshole. We’ll deal. I know we won’t be fast enough next time. But you lose her damn number, you hear me?”

            “You meet me in the next two hours and we’ll talk about that.”

            “Where do you want to meet?”

Butterfly Effect: Sarah gets to enjoy her husband and her baby daughter, and she and Sam stay in touch (platonically). She becomes part of the Hunter’s network.

Chapter Text

Kevin Tran

Way Number One

            “Hey, could we possibly get rid of Buckleming?”

            “I think that’s long overdue. Let Bob figure out another job for his wife.”

            “Awesome. They were going to kill Kevin.”

            “…they need to go now.”

 

Way Number Two

            Gadreel laid his hand on Kevin’s head…and then yanked it back, as if he’d burned himself. “No,” he said firmly. “I cannot.”

            “Sam, what are you doing?” The prophet looked freaked out.

            “I am not Sam,” Gadreel muttered. “Nor am I Ezekiel.”

            “O…kay?” The prophet stepped away. “Dean!”

            The older Winchester rushed into the room. “What are you doing?” He snapped.

            Gadreel held up the piece of paper with ‘Kevin Tran’ written on it. “Metatron wanted me to kill him,” he said bluntly, swallowing his fear. “I don’t want to. And I need your help.”

Butterfly Effect: Gadreel does become a member of Team Free Will. He helps to lead the charge against Metatron, and he and Abner become a couple, because literally why not. Sam and Dean make up faster, with Gadreel there to mediate and explain, and Kevin gets his mom back and is Kevin Freaking Solo. 

 

Way Number Three

            Kevin only felt the beginning of a burn before there was a brilliant light and there was someone between him and Sam.

            No, not Sam. He couldn’t do that. He wouldn’t…

            Sam’s body lay prone on the ground. The other person was the same height as Kevin, with brilliant gold eyes and laugh lines around his eyes. But he wasn’t smiling now.

            “Gadreel, Gadreel. What are you doing?”

            Sam—Gadreel?—didn’t answer.

            Dean was standing in the doorway, open mouthed. “Gabriel? But you’re…”

            “Thought I was too,” Gabriel replied. “But Kevvy here’s been in danger quite a bit in the last little while, and I’ve finally managed to get through.” He beamed at Kevin. “Nice to meet you at last, kiddo.”

            “Uh…hi. Wait, like Gabriel the Archangel?”

            “Yup.” Gabriel’s smile faded. “Now, let’s sort out this issue with Sam and Gadreel. Then we’re going to find Cas, and then…well, I haven’t seen my little brother Metatron in a while.” The archangel drew a blade from thin air. “Time to pay him a visit.”

Butterfly Effect: Gabriel deals with Gadreel, and gives some 'just desserts' to Dean by possessing him for a day, to show him how Sam felt. Dean apologizes, and he and Sam actually discuss Sam's depression. Kevin kicks butt with his angelic guardian by his side, and he feels less crazy. 

Chapter Text

Amelia Novak

            Before Amelia could be stabbed, Claire kicked out hard. The Grigori’s blade went flying, and Cas wasted no time in stabbing him to death.

            Amelia enfolded her daughter in painfully skinny arms. “How did you do that?”

            “I took some self-defence classes at the Y.” Claire leaned against her mother. “After …I didn’t want to be defenseless again.”

            Amelia rocked her daughter. “You won’t be. I’ll look after you too.”

            “You need looking after more than me, Mom. But that’s okay. We’ll be okay.”

Butterfly Effect: Amelia goes to heal, and Claire goes to stay with Jody. When Amelia is better, she moves to Sioux Falls and in with Jody. She, Jody and Donna start a queerplatonic relationship (with Donna/Jody being sexual), and they raise the two girls together.

 

Charlie

Way Number One: Buckleming stops

            “WE NEED TO GET RID OF THEM!”

            “I know, I know. We stopped the draft. Chill, it’s okay.”

            “We’re not taking their other idea, are we?”

            “You mean the one where (audible gulp) Dean and Charlie become a couple?”

            “Yeah, that one.”

            “Over my dead body.”

 

Way Number Two: Charlie Waits

            “Give me five minutes.”

            Charlie sighed. “Okay.”

            Seven minutes later, Cas returned. Charlie was engrossed in the tablet again.

            “Come on, Charlie. I’ll take you to the Bunker.”

            “That’s way too far for you! I can just go to your car and work. I have plenty of data.”

            “Alright. Why don’t we go and get burgers too?”

            Two hours later, Charlie burst back into the room with Rowena, panting. There was blood on her arm, and Cas’ blade was stained. “Rowena, stop! We can’t do this!”

            “What? Why not? Giving up, wee lass?”

            “The Mark keeps the Darkness locked up.” Charlie looked miserable. “We have to keep it.”

            “How did you—”

            “I finished the translation. And the Stynes found us. They’re dead.” Charlie grabbed the book from Rowena’s hands. “We have to stop.”

            “Then what will you do about Dean?” Rowena looked troubled, and it looked like she meant it.

            Charlie looked at Cas. “I think there’s a way left.”

Butterfly Effect: Charlie kicks Cas into confessing to Dean, and Sam kicks Dean into confessing to Cas. They agree to take on the Mark together, which Death does for them; this lessens the effects on Dean to the point where he can function normally. Rowena offers to train Charlie as a witch, and Sam watches them for a while. He studies on his own, and he and Charlie work to sort through the entire Men of Letters canon. And he gets a puppy.  Basically, everyone lives happily ever after.

 

Way Number Three: Charlie can fight like a girl

            Dean got out of the car just ahead of Sam. He flung the motel door, already slightly ajar, open, just in time to see Charlie hurling one of the Stynes across the room. She looked up at him and Sam, a weary smile on her face.

            “Channeled my dark side,” she said.

            Dean strode across the room and swept her into a hug. “Don’t you ever fucking do that again. Ever.”

            “I’m trying to help you, Dean,” Charlie replied. “And I’ve got the download finished. We can keep working on this.”

Butterfly Effect: Charlie persuades Dean not to go after the Stynes, and she keeps digging in the Book of the Damned. The Darkness isn’t a thing because fuck you, but the spell doesn’t work because Rowena refuses to kill Oskar. Death offers to launch Dean to space, but Cas offers his Grace instead, arguing that if the Mark began by an angel corrupting humanity, an angel loving humanity should fix it. His Grace is taken, Destiel happens, Cas is human, the end.

 

Way Number Four: TBW 

 

Way Number Five: Charlie is Chuck

            She really didn’t want to do this.

            She’d learned to really love the Winchesters, and she knew they loved her. Trusted her.

            But they were going to raise the Darkness no matter what she did, and Amara would betray her secret. She had to leave and get away before her sister escaped.

            When the Stynes came, Charlie let the blades pierce her, screamed appropriately, and lay perfectly still in the bathtub until the Winchesters came and saw the dead body.

            Sam walked away to throw up and Dean fell to his knees, weeping silently. That’s when Charlie—once Chuck—left the body. She really did feel guilty, but Sam and Dean couldn’t be stopped. It wasn’t even worth trying.

            Time to build another life. And hide.

Butterfly Effect: Season 11 happens normally until they encounter Chuck, and Dean realizes that Chuck was also Charlie. The brothers have a major faith and identity crisis (obvs). They retreat to the Bunker with Cas, and refuse to fight the Darkness. As a gesture of good faith, Chuck shows them that the Charlie they knew first was real; she just never came back from Oz. Chuck took on her form to keep an eye on them, and then was a coward. Sam screams at him for roughly an hour, really gets through his feelings, and then they agree to fight the Darkness (then things go as normal). As a reward, Chuck and Amara bring back their family (John is not present). 

 

Way Number Six: CharliexRowena

            “Will you shut up already?!”

            “Make me, lass,” Rowena purred.

            So Charlie did, pinning the witch against the wall and kissing her for all she was worth.

            Rowena pulled away, panting. “Well, it’s about bloody time.”

            “Told you to shut up,” Charlie growled, and kissed her again. Rowena tried to bring her arms up, but the handcuffs got in the way.

            “Get these off me,” Rowena snarled, nipping at Charlie’s neck.

            Charlie grinned. “Not a chance.”

            “I’ll  get you for that, my pretty.” Rowena took Charlie’s earlobe between her teeth, and she groaned.

            “I don’t mind. Always been a switch.” Charlie pulled Rowena closer, sliding a leg between hers.

            “Alright, you two, I just heard from—oh. I…see. I will leave.”

            Charlie looked up to see Cas backing away. She laughed, but it turned to a moan as Rowena started to unbutton her shirt.

Butterfly Effect: Dean and Crowley are horrified, but Charlie and Rowena do indeed become a power Ginger Witch duo. Rowena actually falls in love with Charlie, and they work together on stopping the Stynes (Rowena pretty well wipes them all out). They figure out about the Darkness, Rowena comes to the good side, Dean attempts to give Rowena a shovel-talk and the Mark is shared with Castiel.

 

Death

Way One: Dean is not the World’s Biggest Drama Queen

            Dean held the scythe and looked down at his kneeling, weeping brother.

            He handed the scythe back to Death.

            “No. I won’t do it.”

            “You have to, or you will never have peace.” Death actually looked sympathetic. “I promise you that Sam will be in Heaven. He will be alright, I will make sure of it.”

            “Thanks. But I’d rather go to space in agony than be responsible for his death.”

            There was a huge, bright flash, and a lightning bolt came into the room, striking Dean’s forearm. Another flash of blue light, and the Mark was gone.

            Dean stared in pure shock. “What just—”

            Death glared at Sam. “Didn’t you tell the witch to stop messing with the spell?”

            “Yes!” Sam got to his feet. “What’s happening?”

            The three of them went for the door, just in time to see long plumes of black smoke exploding from the ground, forming a huge black cloud.

            “Dean!”

            Death held out his scythe in front of them. “Get to your car, now!”

Butterfly Effect: Death is the third sibling, and he works to convince Amara not to destroy the world. Amara agrees to do so without Chuck coming back, and starts working to fix the world instead. This coaxes Chuck out of hiding, and the three of them start working together. Lucifer never comes back into the picture, because fuck him.

 

Way Two: Death pushes Option Two

            “As I said, you can share the Mark with someone.”

            “There’s no way I’m going to curse someone else with this.”

            Death snapped his fingers, and Cas and Sam appeared, looking very confused.

            “Dean? Death?”

            “Hello, Castiel. Samuel. Let me ask you—”

            “Wait, no—”

            “Would you be willing,” Death continued mercilessly, “to bear the Mark as well?”

            Cas blinked. “How do you mean?”

            “I can split the Mark in three and give one part to each of you.”

            “I’m not okay with this!” Dean snapped.

            “The more the Mark is spread, the less power it exerts upon any one person. If it is the three of you, it will be negligible. And the Darkness cannot be released.”

            “Let’s do it,” Sam said, a determined look on his face.

            “And what if all three of us go rogue?” Dean demanded. “Then what?”

            “I will reap you,” Death replied calmly. “If it is split this way, you can die. When the three of you are dead, the Mark will be fulfilled, and the Darkness will never escape.”

            Dean bit his lip. “You two are…are willing to do that?”

            He still couldn’t look Cas in the eye.

            The angel took his face in his hands and kissed him. “Of course, Dean.”

            Dean blinked, shocked and stared at Cas. He couldn’t speak. Then Cas took his hands, and he realized he didn’t have to.

            “Me too.” Sam paused. “I’m not kissing you though.”

            “Good.”

Butterfly Effect: Team Free Will becomes Team Free Matching Tattoos. The Mark affects them in different ways: Cas becomes more insecure, Sam suffers from major guilt episodes, and Dean stays a bit violent. But they help each other, and form an anarchistic relationship (Dean/Cas romantic-sexual, Sam/Cas and Sam/Dean platonic nonromantic). They eventually die together. The Darkness never gets released.

 

Way Three: TBW