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Hunters and the Hunted

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Cas was sitting on a park bench. He had been sitting on that bench for six hours, waiting for Sam and Dean. Six hours was not a long time in the lifetime of an angel but it sure felt like a long time. He was supposed to meet Dean and Sam at an old motel in Magic City, Texas but had gotten sidetracked in Arkansas when he had felt one of the most powerful things ever. He still hadn’t figured out what was causing the waves of power. The park was where Cas choose to sit because it had more frequent waves of power than anywhere else in the city that he had found so far. The power seemed to fluctuate, sometimes disappearing for a couple hours at a time but it always came back in the end. It was a strange power, raw and uncontrolled. It seeped everywhere, crawling over him. It seemed to float into him as if it was trying to possess him. But at the same time, it seemed to embrace him whispering sweet nothings. It made his skin crawl and at the same time it relaxed him. It was some old dark magic. He had never seen anything like it. He had immediately called Dean. They told him they were on the way. He wasn’t sure why he expected anything else but he didn’t want them there. He wanted them safe. Tucked away from this evil. They were the best hunters but something told him this was something they would regret getting into. It was the same thing that told him to rebel against heaven so who knew how reliable it was. And so he called them anyway.

Dean was driving as fast as he could. He was rushing to get to Cas. All Cas told him was that he needed his help. When Cas needed help, you knew it was something big. Something not even an angel could fix. And normally these things were things Dean hated getting into. He hated all of these big problems but he fixed them anyway because the whole world was wack job screwed so he might as well try to make it a little better. Most of the time, he was lucky if he could save one or two people. Something told him whatever Cas needed help with could save thousands of lives or destroy everything. He was kind of hoping for the former. But something told him it was going to be the latter. Call it his gut, intuition, or years of nothing going right but he would wager his life on it. And he basically was. He was once again risking his life for Cas. A typical Monday for him. “We think it’s just a nest. Yep thanks for taking the case. Something’s come up. No, not quite an emergency. Listen, you just worry about the vamps okay. We can deal with this.” With those words, Sam hung up the phone. “Charlie says hi.” He mutters and rolls his eyes. “I miss that girl.” Dean said with a chuckle. Sam rolled his eyes. “Really? I couldn’t tell. You don’t bring it up every time I mention her or something.” “Hey, ever since she moved in with that girl we haven’t been seeing as much as her. That reminds me. Have we ever meet this girl? I worry about Charlie. If this girl hurts her, I will..” “You sound like a concerned parent. Charlie’s a grown woman. She can take care of herself.” Sam interrupted him. “I’m just saying something seems fishy about this. Why else wouldn’t she introduce us?” “and I’m just saying that I think you’re trying to make things bigger than they actually are and you should instead focus on more pressing matters like whatever Cas wants with you.” “You’re right. I should be worried about that. What if it’s a new monster or some angel? What if he’s captured Cas? What if Cas is in danger? We should hurry”. With those words, Dean started to accelerate.“Please. I doubt it’s that important. Remember how frantic he was when he discovered that some people put pineapple on their pizza. He thought that was a big deal and it clearly wasn’t. Knowing him, it’s probably something completely ordinary that he’s blown way out of proportion.” Dean nodded his head but didn’t take his foot off the pedal.

Chapter Text

“So this is a big deal.”
“Yes of course. Why do you think I called you? Do you think I wanted you to be caught up in this?”
Dean sighed. “Listen. You're not really known for knowing what qualifies as an emergency. We just assumed you found more pizza with pineapple on it or something.”
Cas shook his head. “No. This is important. This is old magic. Can you not feel it?”
Dean scrunched up his nose and looked at Sam. Sam looked confused as usual. “Nope. Nothing. You sure it isn’t just heartburn ?” Cas looked at Dean with a slight frown. “No. What is this heartburn though? Is it dangerous? Should I get my angel blade ready?”
Sam chuckled. “No. Nothing like that. It’s something human. You won’t have to worry about it.” Cas nodded once and then resumed his pacing in front of the bench. Dean watched the park but everything looked normal.
“Hey, Dean. 3 o’clock.” Sam whispered. Dean looked and saw a small girl sitting on the bench. She was sketching in a book but kept looking up at them. It wasn’t exactly signs that pointed to great evil but it was certainly strange. She might have just been sketching the tree behind them but that would be a strange coincidence and he didn’t believe in coincidences. “Should we go talk to her? Or something?” Sam asked. Cas nodded and started walking towards her. “Hey. Stop. We don’t know anything about her. She could be a demon or something.”
“Then I have my angel blade. I will be able to handle myself in a fight. Probably better than you and your brother seeing as I have powers and you don’t”
“I’m just saying you should at least get a general sense of what you’re going against. And he’s gone isn’t he?”
“Yah. 100%. He left around the time you opened your mouth to tell him to stay back and you’ll take care of it.”
“I wasn’t going to say that.”
“Yes, you were. You’ve been saying that since he came back. He’s getting antsy. He is powerful, Dean. I think he’s right. If it is this old magic he was telling us about, he’s better suited to deal with it.”
“I can’t get to her,” Cas said as he appeared next to Sam.
“What do you mean? Why can’t you get to her? What happened?”
“I don’t know. One second, I was teleporting, the next I was in Canada. I teleported back and tried again but got no closer. There’s something protecting the girl. I don’t know what yet.”
“So there must be someone casting this spell to protect her right? So we should be looking for hex bags or something right. Is it even possible for witches to cast protection spells? I’ve never heard of it.”
“It is not a witch. It is something older. That is the source of the power I was sensing. But why would someone want to protect her?”
“Shit.”
“What?”
“Dean’s gone. He left at some point and we didn’t notice. He’s probably gone to kill her.”

Chapter Text

Dean had snuck away hoping to just get this thing done with so he could relax. Unfortunately for him, there was an unforeseen problem. He could get to her easily enough but when he got to the bench, she looked up at him. He was surprised. She looked very little but she seemed much older.

“Are you here to kill me?” She said as calm as could be.

Dean stopped for a second. He didn’t have any weapons out. How did she know? He looked at her again. She looked scared. No not just scared, terrified.

“No. Of course not. What makes you say that?” He lied.

Why did I lie? Just kill her. There’s no reason to keep her alive. Except to figure out what’s happening. That’s why. Obviously.

She didn’t say anything. He smiled. “I just want to take you to meet my friends. They’re really nice. Can you let them get to you?”

She nodded and all of the sudden Sam and Cas were standing right there.

“What just happened?” Sam asked looking kind of dizzy.

“I don’t know. I didn’t do anything.”

Dean looked at the girl. She was clutching her book closer to her chest and was grabbing her bag from the bench.

“Hey. Where are you going?” Dean said quietly. “They’re not going to hurt you either. We want to help you. I swear on my life okay. Can you come with me? We just want to make sure you’re okay.”

She nodded slowly and stood up. He smiled and started to walk toward the car. When he turned around she was right behind him and Sam and Cas were some distance away. He smiled.

“Do you want to ride shotgun?” Dean asked opening the door. She nodded and slid into the seat pressing the sketchbook closer to her chest.

Sam and Cas sat in the back and then Dean turned the car around.

“I’m guessing we’re going back to the bunker right?”

“Yah. That seems smartest.” Sam said. “We need to do some research and everything.”

Dean noticed when he said research the girl tightened her grip on the notebook.

“All right.”



After a couple hours of awkward car rides, they pulled into the bunker. Dean smiled. The girl had fallen asleep at some point so he picked her up and carried her into the living room where he placed her on a couch.
“Is there an empty room somewhere?” Dean questioned.

“I can make her one,” Cas said. He finally felt useful and ran off to get the room ready. Sam sat down at the table. “I don’t even know where to start with the research. All we know about her is that she seems powerful and she can stop Cas from teleporting. Not much to go on there. I see what I can get but there may not be that much lore on it.”

Dean sighed. “I wish I could give you more but it doesn’t seem like she knows what she is either.”

Cas appeared next to them. “Her room is ready if you want to set her up in there. I went to her room to get her stuff and well… maybe I should show you.”

He touched their foreheads and they found themselves standing in her room. It was now empty but they immediately saw what was weird.

“Why’s there so much dust? It’s at least a weeks worth of dust. Has she not been home?” Sam questioned.

“It gets worse,” Cas said before turning to the door. “There was too much power. I can’t teleport right to the kitchen but well it’s bad.”

He walked down the stairs. When they turned the corner into the kitchen, Sam gagged and Dean gasped. There were two bodies lying on the ground if you could call them that. One of them had its eyes burnt out. “So angels?” Dean asked.

“I thought so at first but look closer.”

Sam got right next to the one body. “There definitely were angels in them. You can tell from their eyes but it gets worse. It looks like demons were in them at the same time. And…” At this point Sam gulped. “It looks like they started peeling their own skin off.”

Dean gagged and almost started vomiting.

Cas sighed. “That’s what I thought. I’m pretty sure that… well, I think those are her parents.”

Sam nodded having reached that conclusion too.

“Hey Cas, did you happen to go in the living room?”

“No.”

“Then you’ll probably want to go in there,” Dean responded.

As Sam and Cas walked into the living room, they smelt an awful smell.

“What is that?” Sam asked plugging his nose.

“I believe that’s burnt flesh,” Cas said.

Then they saw the body.

“Oh god.” Dean gasped out.

It was little boy maybe nine at most. His arms were on the opposite end of the room. His legs were spread propping him up as if he was still alive and just waiting for his parents to join him to watch some cartoons. In fact looking at the tv, that's exactly what happened. His eyes were burnt out and so was his tongue. His whole body was black as a marshmallow and his head was half off. Cas stared unable to comprehend what happened. Sam gagged again.

“Do you think she did this?” Sam asked hesitantly.

“No,” Dean said back instantly. “She seemed more scared. Not like she could do this.”

Sam shrugged. “Just keep it as an option okay? Just because you trust her doesn’t mean she is deadly.”  

“We should clean it up or something. Sam suggested.

“Do you have any idea how to do that?” Dean asked.

Sam shook his head. “No. But it feels wrong leaving them.”

“Call the police.” Cas offered up. “They can clean it up and I’ll make sure you disappear before they come.”

Sam looked around to see if anyone else had any better ideas. When Dean didn’t offer any, he shrugged and moved to the phone.

 

They got back home to see her sitting on the couch. She looked up in alarm when they appeared. Dean walked over to her.

“Do you want to see your room?” He offered unable to think of anything else to say.

She nodded slowly and stood up.

He smiled and started leading her.

“So, do you just not talk or is it a choice?” He questioned.

She blinked up at him, once again not answering.

“All right then.”

Dean turned right and opened the door.

“I hope you don’t mind that we went to your house. We wanted you to be comfortable in your room.”

She looked around as if in shock.

 

It was an exact copy of her room. She had never expected to see it ever again. After that day, she had packed one bag and was gone. She didn’t know if they would come back. She just had to keep going. Maybe it was just because she hadn’t slept in a week at least or maybe it was her room or maybe she was just stressed or she was finally grieving but she started crying. And not little cries either. Full on sobs tearing through her leaving her hollow.

 

Dean didn’t know what to do. She had started crying. He hadn’t expected that. He didn’t know what to do now. He wasn’t exactly good with emotions. He tended to shove things down and let it out when he was hunting. He sat down next to her. He patted her shoulder.

“Hey, it’s okay kiddo.”

She didn’t stop crying. He looked around her room. He then noticed her bookshelf. “Oh hey. Do you like Harry Potter?” He asked.

She nodded and pointed to her bookshelf where there was an entire shelf devoted to Harry Potter things. Dean smiled. Finally, something he could do.

“Do you want me to read some?” He offered hoping she would say yes.

She shrugged not seeming to care.

He smiled. “I’ll take that as a yes.”

He walked over and pulled the first book off the shelf.

“Mrs. and Mr. Dursley of”

“That’s not right.”

He turned around. The voice was so quiet he could barely hear it. In fact, he wasn’t sure he heard it until she spoke again.

“It’s Mr. and Mrs. Dursley of number four, Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much.”

He laughed a little. “You just had that memorized?” He asked.

“Yah. I’ve read it a couple times,” she said quietly.

“Yah? Then what’s your favourite character?” He asked

“I don’t have one. I have a list of my top ten.”

He started laughing so hard he almost fell over. “You sure are an odd duck aren’t you?”

She shrugged but he could see here retreating into herself again.

“Hey, two questions. One, what’s your name? And two, how old are you?”

“My name’s Abby and I’m twelve. Now I have two questions. One, who are you? And two, why do you want me?”

“I’m Dean. The tall guy is Sam and the one with black hair is Cas. Or rather, Castiel. He’s an angel. And we want you because you’re powerful and it’s our job to make sure that you aren’t dangerous.”

She nodded accepting that answer.

“One last question”

“Yes?”

“Can I go to bed?”

Dean sighed. Of course, he hadn’t thought about how tired she must be.

“Of course. I’m sorry. I should have let you go to bed sooner.”

He walked back out to see Sam and Cas pacing the room.

“So, what is she?” Sam asked.

“I don’t know. What I do know is she’s a twelve-year-old girl who just lost her parents and her brother who is scared for her life.”

“I think we should take her to heaven.” Cas offered up.

“No way. Angels wanted her. Heaven clearly wants her and so I don’t think we should give them her.” Sam protested.

“I vote we keep her here with us. I want her to stay safe.” Dean said.

“She could be dangerous though.” Cas pointed out. “Heaven might be the only place she’ll be safe in.”

“That’s not what you mean,” Dean yelled. “You mean heaven might be the only place where she can’t use her powers.”

“Cas might be right. Isn’t it our job to keep people safe? If it means one person over a million lives, which will you pick?” Sam added.

“Neither. I’ll figure out a way all of them can live.” With those words, Dean stormed out of the bunker.