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Necessary Distraction

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“Let me buy you another one, c’mon John, I just want to pick your brain, you’ve seen so much.”

“Yeah alright Gordon, sure, make it a double this time.” John answers, slumping in his chair a little under all the attention.  This guy just won’t give up.

Gordon signals for two more, and Ellen brings over a couple of full glasses of whiskey. She sets them down and raises her eyebrows at John in silent question.  John shrugs off her concern. 

“So, what’s it like hunting all these years? Have things changed much since you started?”  Gordon asks eagerly.

“Thanks for making me feel old ya asshole whippersnapper.”

“Sorry man, not what I meant at all, it’s just, I’ve only ever hunted vamps you know?  And I hear you’ve seen it all.” Gordon says with a voice filled with something approaching awe.

“Well, no one’s seen it all, there’s so much out there we don’t even know about.  But yeah, I’ve been through the whole book of critters just about, haven’t seen a vamp myself.  Guess you’ve taken care of them.” John answers, thinking of how crazy about vamps he’s heard Gordon is.

“Maybe so.” Gordon says proudly.  “So tell me what it was like when you started.”

“It was hard at first when I didn’t know what the hell I was doin’, had to figure it out as I went, plus I had the kids with me too.”

“Oh right, you’ve got two boys don’t you?”

“Yeah, Sam and Dean, they’re good boys, well men now.”

“How come they’re not with you?” Gordon asks the question that many in the hunter community have been asking and not getting much of an answer to.

“Well, one’s away at college of all damn things, and the other’s hunting on his own now.  I miss ‘em though.”

“Must be easier in a way.” Gordon offers, hoping to avoid John getting maudlin on him.

“Oh shit yeah.  Still wish I could see ‘em more though.” John says, knowing he’s stating the obvious, but it still hurts like a festering knife wound to the gut that his boys are both just gone like that.

“I never got a chance to have kids. Well not yet anyways.” Gordon says, although he knows good and well that he’ll never have kids, not living this kind of life.

“I’ll tell you, it’s worth the pain, but it’s hard having to worry that I’ve prepared them enough for what’s comin’.” John stops himself just in time, from sharing the stuff about Sam and the demon, he knows that he needs to handle that himself.

Gordon’s hunter radar is activated, there’s something important here that John’s not fessing up to, “What’s that?”

John just shakes his head and lowers his eyes, “Never mind that.  I think I need another.”

Gordon signals, and Ellen’s much slower to respond this time, John doesn’t notice his glass isn’t as full as it should be.  And a good thing too, he’d be hollering at her, as drunk as he is.

Through his drunken haze John realizes that Gordon is scenting around the information he’s not ever going to divulge, so he decides to just go for it and offer a necessary distraction, “So Gordo, what do you like to do for fun?”

“Shooting I guess. How ‘bout you?” Gordon answers the obvious change the subject question.

“Find someone friendly, you know.” John gives him a different sort of look, one that takes him all in at once, instead of a hunter’s assessment for threats and advantages.

Gordon returns the look, realizing that John’s offering a lot more than conversation now, “Like me you mean John?”

“Why not?” John shrugs, thinking back to the last time he’d had anybody, it’s been a while, and now that he’s remembering, he’s really missed it, shoving down all the normal human urges that a man has into drinking himself into a stupor instead of trying to ever connect with someone.

“You’re pretty drunk, I wouldn’t want to take advantage.”

“You wouldn’t be, c’mon let’s go, ‘fore I change my mind, already gotta room in the back tonight. Number three.”  John stands up a little unsteadily, leaning on the back of his chair for support.

Gordon looks up at him, noticing that John’s really handsome under all the gruffness and has some of that animal magnetism alpha male aura that always gets his motor running.  He stands up and says quietly to John, “Ok, you go back and I’ll hit the bathroom, and meet you in your room.”

John busts out with a sarcastic laugh, “Pretty stealthy, you must be a hunter”

“Shut up old man. I’ll stealthy your ass.”  Gordon hisses, not wanting to draw much attention to their hook-up in this bar of hunters.  It’s a small community and some of them are still not so accepting of ‘alternative lifestyles’ as his friend Kubrick has told him.

John’s face goes serious at that thought and answers with finality that no one could ever argue with, “Not likely bucko, other way around.  See you in a few.”

Ellen watches closely as John stumbles back to his room, she hopes that he’s down for the count tonight.  Ever since the boys and he split up, he’s been off the beam and she’s been worried for him.  She watches Gordon, and sees him take off the opposite way for the bathroom.  Then there’s two more drink orders and someone actually wants a meal for once and she loses track of where Gordon goes.  Their table is empty and there’s a twenty on it, so she scoops it up and is glad that he’s gone.  Something about that guy triggers her alarms.

In the morning she gets woken up by someone stomping down the stairs and peeks out her window to the parking lot.  There’s Gordon’s car, taking off in a cloud of dust.  Huh, well there’s some ammo for dealing with John.

He stumbles in bleary, looking for coffee a few hours later.

“You have a good night John?”

“Just give me some coffee Ellen, don’t need a sermon to go with it.”

“Saw Gordon leaving this morning.  He treat you right?” She teases, setting a mug of coffee on the bar in front of him.

“Shut up.” John says dismissively and picks up the mug, drinking some of the steaming brew.

“Well John, I’m not running that kind of place, I worry about my customers getting the wrong idea.” Ellen says, looking at him closely, checking to see that he really is alright.

“Not like that Ellen and you know it.” John glares at her.

Ellen flaps a hand at him and wipes down the other end of the bar, “Just teasing ya hon. We all need our distractions.”

John pulls out a flask and adds a little whisky to his coffee, he takes a swig and then salutes her with the mug.  “Maybe I’ll see you in a few weeks, I’m heading out.”

“Take care John, say hi to those boys for me.”

He finishes draining the mug and sets it on the bar, not meeting her eyes, “Yeah sure, I’ll get right on that.”