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The Future is Now

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The plan had been for Dean to simply pop into the past, speak to Samuel Colt and hop back. Easy-Peasy, right? Unfortunately, this really didn't look like the right time period...At all. Dean silently cursed Castiel and the angel's mojo.

This wasn't the first time that Dean Winchester had time-travelled but this was definitely unusual even for him. He peered around what looked like an underground parking lot in confusion. When Castiel had promised him time travel he'd expected an old rural setting where people rode on horse back and churned thy own butter, not whatever mess this was.

Several, what Dean assumed were, cars were parked in straight lines. They'd been easy enough to identity due to the windshield and wheels but they all seemed to be the same make and model. A nightmare for classic car loving Dean. Instead of different body shapes, they all appeared to be like oblong pods in various shades of white, grey or black. Despite having the underground feeling, it was pretty light as there were lights installed into the cement ceiling above.

The air definitely seemed futuristic to Dean, if that were even possible, even though there were a few aspects which seemed like they hadn't been changed or maybe it was perfect so they saw no need to change the design. The walls were clinically white with a black line painted down the surface once every two or so metres. The bright lights were beginning to make his head pound making Dean groan in frustration, he'd only been there a matter of minutes and this world was already beginning to attack him.

Mind set on getting out, Dean walked around the perimeter of the space, looking for doors or an elevator. There has to be a way out, the hunter thought desperately. He wanted out and hopefully sooner rather than later as a feeling of claustrophobia was starting to weigh down on his chest. All he hoped was to get out or for Cas to get his feather ass down here and zap him back home where he knew how to leave a room. He felt horribly akin to a trapped mouse.

A clear voice suddenly spoke, making Dean jump. He had no idea where the voice came from as there where no speakers visible in the room, "Evening, citizens. The time is now 7pm and sector 4 is now out of bounds. The government thank you for your cooperation." The voice was obviously a robot and automated to repeat the same thing every day. At least they spoke the same language or that'd make everything a lot harder.

It was mere moments later when there was a soft pinging noise and one of the black lines on the white wall opened to reveal an elevator behind it. Dean marvelled at the technology as he hadn't even been able to tell that there was anything behind the wall.

A tall man in a dark grey suit and brown shaggy hair stepped out. He was obviously fit and his broad shoulders only acted to make him look bigger. He sounded and looked exhausted. He slumped slightly as he walked and it looked as though his feet were heavy. Dean wanted to laugh, obviously things hadn't changed that much since his time.

The man spoke but Dean didn't know what to as he had no cellphone or Bluetooth device. He knew it was rude but he continued to eavesdrop anyway. He wasn't raised with manners anyway.

"Look, Tai..." The man stopped, obviously listening to Tai. A frown formed on his pretty features, "I'm gunna have to go in tomorrow then and get the Manual transmitter Cable..." Dean realised that it sounded like a pretty normal conversation as he wouldn't have understood the technology Jargon even if he were back home, "Well, I'll go when sector 4 re-connects.... No, they went to Gaple for the Straight Three Operator... Yeah well, whose fault was that? Exactly... You know-" The suited man suddenly froze when he saw Dean loitering in the car parking area, "Look, Tai, I'll have to DC you tomorrow... Okay? Bye."

Dean heard a quiet buzz which he assumed was the call being disconnected. The tall man seemed wary of Dean and for a second the hunter couldn't figure out why. That was until it suddenly dawned on him that his 21st century clothes probably didn't allow him to fit in. The man swallowed and took a step closer whilst his eyes shot to the black car-like vehicle which was closest to Dean. It almost seemed as though he was assessing the condition of the vehicle.

Uncertain of social etiquette, Dean simply took a step away from the pod shaped car without taking his eyes away from suit-man. The stranger fiddled with his thin tie while not taking his eyes off Dean. The gray suit had elbow patches, like an old lecturer would wear, but it was not tweed instead the material was a glossy silver which complimented the gray. Dean had never been into fashion but it was a well-fitted and clearly expensive suit.

The man hesitated before taking a step closer to Dean. The suited man was probably confused as Dean was dressed in clothes from his time. He bet that he looked really strange and possibly mad.

"Who are you?" The man asked cautiously. He didn't come any closer so they were speaking over a distance of a few meters.

"Um... Dean." The hunter replied uncertainly.

The man raised a fine eyebrow as his sharp gaze focused on the strange man, "Why did that sound like a question?" The stranger didn't miss a beat. He blew a strand of long brown hair away from his eyes but didn't get any closer.

Dean shrugged uselessly as he really had no idea what the man wanted him to say. Shifting his weight from one foot to the other, he peered around the relatively small space in vague disinterest. The tall stranger looked surprised as though he was shocked that Dean seemed at least kind of normal. His hazel-green eyes studied the man, who was slightly shorter than him.

"What are you doing down here anyway?" The man gestured around him to the clinically white and black parking area.

"Just... Getting my thing..." Dean lied as he pointed at one of the vehicles that was next to him.

The man's expression turned sceptical, "I have two reasons why I don't believe a single word of that sentence. One, only employees can park here and two, that is my car."

So they still call them cars, Dean pondered to himself silently. Maybe things hadn't changed that much after all? He didn't even know what year it was let alone whether words have changed.

"Clearly, I was joking," Dean tried for a casual eye roll which looked ridiculously fake, "I was... Left here by a friend." Which was technically true. He tried to seem cool and with everything under control. He was striving to seem like a normal citizen but that was a struggle since this tall man was the only future person that he'd met so far.

"Well, next time, tell your 'friend' that stunts like that could get them fired." Sam sighed as he walked closer to Dean in the direction of his vehicle. The hunter shifted uncomfortably as he stood there, "Look," The man began after a moment of thinking, "Is there anywhere you need to go because I'm heading out of this sector now anyway."

Dean rubbed the back of his head awkwardly, "Where are you heading?"

Sam held his wrist to the side of the car where Dean would usually expect the keys to go in. He assumed that there was something on his wrist that acted as a key, permitting him access. The tall man opened the door and leant against it as he peered across at Dean.

He seemed embarrassed when he spoke so he avoided eye contact and fiddled with whatever was under his sleeve which had opened the door. Dean was curious to see what keys of the future looked like but he didn't want to have to have them connected to his skin or even inserted under his skin.

"I'm going to housing 8..." The tall guy rubbed his long neck and his bangs fell over his eyes slightly as he ducked his head down.

"Housing 8, you say?" Dean pretended to consider the location for a moment. He could feel hazel eyes on him as he acted, "Yeah, that'll do!"

"Seriously?" The future-man seemed gobsmacked as he peered at the hunter. His brow creased and a sceptic look passed over his face, "You are going to housing 8?"

Peering down at his clothes, Dean frowned. What was this mystery man trying to say?

"Look, I don't know what you're implying but-" The hunter started.

"No, no, no." The guy raised his hands in a placating manner, "I didn't mean... I... Sorry."

"Don't worry! To replay me you can take me back to good ol' housing 8" Dean beamed happily in an attempt to calm the man. He was obviously feeling bad about his behaviour and comment.

Sighing, the giant man nodded for Dean to get in the other side. The hunter stepped closer to the car and peered down at the smooth metal side. There was no handle, button or lever for him to open the door with. Growing more embarrassed by the second, Dean pawed at the sleek surface in the hope that maybe something would pop open or activate.

Facing growing red, he could see the man peering at him with his jaw slack and a look of sudden amazement on his face. Dean wanted to flee but where'd he go in this new and very unfamiliar world. He couldn't even get into a car for God's sake!

Obviously pitying the man, the suited guy leant across to push the door open from the inside. His eyes carried a mix of suspicion and uncertainty but mainly a major look of surprise. Don't ask questions, Dean begged, Please don't ask questions.

"Have you never seen a Projeneration before?"

Hesitantly, Dean shook his head,"No..."

"What is up with you?" He mumbled to himself as he pressed a transparent band, located around his wrist, against a pad on the dashboard.

There was no steering wheel in front of either of the seats which caused an uncomfortable knot to tie in Dean's belly. This felt so totally unnatural to him even though his driver seemed completely at ease. The man pressed his thumb against a glowing stamp sized pad and it seemed to scan his thumb print. The hunter wondered whether it was for identification or something else.

"I'm Sam, by the way..." The long haired man spoke quietly. Dean pondered whether the man was offended that he'd never bothered to ask for his name.

"Sam?" He scratched his chin, "Well, that's a normal name..."

Sam rolled his eyes, "Don't be sarcastic. I know that it's really old fashioned so you don't have to say it."

The car suddenly jolted and the vehicle was being lifted up. A hole formed it the cement ceiling and they went upwards through it. It was almost pitch-black aside from the tiny lights which were blinking on the flat glass panels on the dashboard. Sam just peered around the car, apparently comfortable in the confining space.

Finally, they broke through the dark as the vehicle was lifted onto a road. Metal tracks were embedded into the usual Tarmac and every other vehicle on the road seemed to be relying on the metal to guide them to their destination as nobody had steering wheels to direct.

Instinctively, Dean wanted to reach out for the steering wheel even though it wasn't there. The sensation of driving or being driven without it simply felt hauntingly unsafe to the hunter. He peered out of the glass window at the world around them.

The other vehicles travelled just like theirs. Each had a distance of around two meters between them and each was travelling at the exact same speed. Dean assumed that it was rush-hour or the future equivalent as there were cars for as far as the eye could see in the orderly lines. The hunter wanted to ask about the tracks and cars but was still hesitant to act different or draw unnecessary attention to himself.

Buildings around the road were mostly steel with an odd window scattered here and there on the cold surface. It seemed a strange progression especially seeing as, in his time, loads of high rise buildings were being made of loads of glass. The sky was dark and grey low lying clouds clung to the air around the tops of the multi-story buildings. It took a minute but eventually he realised that it wasn't cloud but instead thick, suffocating smog. These GreenPeace types were right: Pollution is getting worse.

He was starting to believe that he didn't quite like this future world.

When Sam spoke Dean jumped as he was unprepared for the silence to be broken, "What's your name?"

Dean blinked at the Sasquatch sized man for a moment before hesitantly answering, "Um, Dean."

"Well then, 'umDean' it's nice to meet you." He grinned at his own poor sense of humor.

"That's not funny, dude." Dean tried to sound disinterested.

"Dude?" Sam laughed, "What century are you even from?!"

Swallowing and wringing his hands together, Dean bit his tongue and cursed himself then cursed Sam before finally cursing Castiel and his stupid angel magic. He knew that the truth wasn't a possibility as Sam would inevitably freak out and leave him stranded in this unfamiliar place. Dean just shrugged in answer as it seemed a much safer option than anything else. Sam seemed to let the subject go even though he wasn't exactly pushing it in the first place.

The vehicles zipped along quickly in between the large sky rises so within a handful of minutes, their car was turning off and following another set of tracks. There was only one other vehicle on this road so Dean assumed that maybe they were heading for a rougher side of town.

Minutes later, their car came to a steady halt in front of some sort of multi-story buildings. Apartments maybe? Large windows showed each floor but the glass was black as though it was tinted. The architecture was different from those further in the city. Sam groaned as he pulled himself out of the car. The tall man waited for Dean to exit before holding his wrist to the car door again and barely a second later the car, following the designated tracks, shot off around the building to where, Dean assumed, it'd be parked.

Sam looked constipated as he was obviously considering something. The hunter was about to tell him that when the tall man spoke instead, "Do you want to come up for a drink before you go?" He added more as if to explain himself, "Sector links don't close for another 2 hours or so..."

Dean glanced around the surrounding area in curiosity. Tall apartment buildings stood lined up along both sides of the tracks with just a few meters either side which acted as the sidewalk. He would be seriously lying if he said that the inside of Future-Man's home didn't interest him. Pondering on it for a moment, Dean quickly agreed to a small drink before he left. He didn't want to get overly attached to the man especially when Castiel would come and get the hunter any minute now. He hoped the angel would sort out the problem soon so he wasn't abandoned here.

Sam seemed happy with his decision as his lips pulled up tightly into a strong grin. It doesn't seem like this guy has much company, Dean thought.

Holding his wrist to the pad beside the door, there was a small beep then the doors magically opened for Sam. At this point, the older man was dying to see what was controlling everything so easily.

Sam smiled and welcomed Dean into the sterile white foyer. He had a feeling that white was more for practicality than just minimalist style as it was absolutely everywhere. It definitely had a futuristic feel to it though.

"Floor 7" Sam spoke clearly before stepping into a wide, glass tube in the middle of the room and sliding across a glass door. As soon as the two parts of glass had met, a powerful suction began to lift Sam off the floor. A powerful fan below Sam's feet shot into function effectively propelling Sam into the air. The tall man was taken straight upwards and onto the next floor. Dean could only assume that it could go all the way to floor seven. The device looked pretty intimidating so Dean wasn't exactly thrilled to have to use it.

Sam was gone leaving Dean alone in the empty foyer. He peered around and considered running but he had to wait for Castiel anyway so might as well wait with a drink and company.

Stepping to the machine, Dean pulled the glass sliding door back across to allow him entrance. His footsteps echoed inside the tube as he got in. Claustrophobia settled in as the tube didn't leave much extra space. He tugged the glass across and squeezed his eyes shut firmly to brace for impact.

Nothing happened. The hunter blinked open an eye to peer around in confusion. Why wasn't it working? He thought back to what Sam had done when the solution finally dawned on him suddenly.

"Floor seven." The suction was strong and Dean really didn't like the sensation of being lifted but falling at the same time. He tried to brace himself so was shocked when his feet Landed softly on the floor of level seven. The corridor area was very small as only one door stood on the pale wall. Number 9 was a holographic above the doorframe.

Stepping forward, he stumbled slightly. The weird suction tube, which was a sentence he never thought he'd say, had seriously messed with his head.

The door swung open to reveal Sam looking over at him with confusion sketched onto his features. He opened the door just soon enough to see Dean stumble so he stuck his arms out to steady the man.

"There you are. I was wondering when you were coming up," The giant of a man chuckled lightly before his face turned serious, "Do you not rise well? You should have said! We could have taken the stairs!" Dean was glad that something reliable still existed. He could trust stairs so stairs were safe unless they were some weird future stairs; in which case, he'd never leave this level ever again.

Sam spoke again with the corners of his lips curled up slightly, "Here, come on in."