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And the Ground Shook (17/22) - My Little Corner of the World
And the Ground Shook (17/22)
Disclaimer: I don't own them, they own me.
Rating: Gen, with very mild language.
Category: Gen.
Pairings: None.
Characters: Hurt!Dean, John, Sam.
Summery: Dean opened his heavy lidded eyes. Everything was still fuzzy and smeared. And too quiet. Great. The world, version 2.0. How the hell was he supposed to tell a hot chick from a werewolf if everything looked like paint blotches?
Comments: Are loved and coveted.
Notes: Pre-series, AU. Not a deathfic. Lots of Dean-whumping, though. Will be updated regularly.

And the Ground Shook

Chapter Seventeen – Rift

Dean opened his heavy lidded eyes. Everything was still fuzzy and smeared. And too quiet. Great. The world, version 2.0. How the hell was he supposed to tell a hot chick from a werewolf if everything looked like paint blotches?

He blinked. Oh. Well, that's much better. But still quiet. And white. Dean closed his eyes again for a long moment. He felt tired, heavy. And starved. His time was running out, he knew.

There was a steady beat in the background, but that was the only sound he could pick up. That, and a familiar smell. He forced his tired eyes open. Things were even more focused this time. A hospital room. Well, shit.

Dean's head was heavy, must have weighed a ton, and the most he could do was turn it slightly sideways. His Dad was sleeping in a chair beside his bed, a heavy looking book in his lap. Dean strained his eyes, but couldn’t see anything else on that side. There was a curtain blocking the view – that explained part of the white. He turned his head to the other side. Shit.

"Dean. You're awake. Gave your old man quite a fright, dear boy." Pastor Jim, who was leaning against the wall, pushed himself away from it, towards Dean's bed. Dean pushed himself up, away from the nearing priest.

"Stay away." He breathed. Jim raised his hands in a surrender motion, but didn’t back away. He was dressed in simple denim and a thick sweater, his salt and pepper hair a little tousled.

"You shouldn’t get worked up," he said gently. "You don’t have to worry, son. I won't hurt you." Dean's eyes darted around. Sam wasn’t anywhere to be seen.

"Where's Sammy?" he demanded. Jim smiled kindly at him.

"He just went to the bathroom. He should be back any minute. Would you like anything to drink?" the priest suggested. Dean shook his head, closing his eyes as the world smeared again. He brought his hand to his nose and could feel a plastic tube. A nose canula. An IV line was pulling on his arm. Wonderful. He heard footsteps, but his eyes refused to open. A hand ran through his hair. "They said you passed out from exhaustion." Jim explained. "Considering what your father had told me, I believe there was a reason for that." He noted, and Dean heard the sound of a chair being dragged nearer. "You were dehydrated. They inserted an IV."

"How long…?" Dean rasped.

"A few hours." Jim answered. "It will be dawn soon." There was a long moment of silence before the priest asked; "How are you feeling?" Dean forced his eyes open, blinked a couple of times to get the world back into focus.

"I feel…" he frowned, looking for the right word. "Loopy." That was the best he could come up with. Jim smiled.

"You have to stay here for observation. Twenty four hours." He said. "They took a look at your stomach, too. Put you back on antibiotics, just in case." Dean licked his dry lips and the pastor sighed. "How did you get yourself in this mess, boy?" he asked, but there was no criticism in his voice.

"Dean?" Dean's eyes darted to the door. It was a little strange, how the mere sight of his little brother helped ease some of the pressure in his chest.

"Hey, squirt." He said tiredly. Sam snorted.

"You can't call me squirt anymore. I'm taller than you." he said, grinning. Dean huffed.


"An inch and a half." Sam said indignantly.

"In your dreams, maybe." Dean puffed. Damn, it was good to see Sammy.

"How are you feeling?" Sam asked worriedly. Dean was about to answer with his patented smirk and an 'I'm fine', but realized no one was going to buy that. He offered his little brother a tired smile instead. Sam leaned his hip on Dean's bed, studying his brother. "You still look like shit." He said. "Guess I'm the handsome one now." He smirked. Dean flipped him off, too tired to speak. Sam laughed. "You know, this is a whole new level of being lazy." Sam noted, "Passing out just so you don't have to do research? That's new." He said with a smile. Dean closed his eyes. Sammy was okay, he could go back to sleep now.

Sam started talking again, but the pastor touched his arm. "We should let your brother rest."

It took some time and cajoling, but between them, John and Jim were able to convince Dean it was best if they stayed at the pastor's, at least for a few days.

They all threw themselves into research, spending their day in the pastor's large archive and library. Sam was going through the books like they were candy; going through up to five different tomes a day. He didn’t actually read everything, mostly skimmed through, looking for anything that seemed connected to the words 'scepter' or 'Amara' or anything that even sounded like that. Sam's zeal helped compensate for his brother's slow progress.

In the four days they've been staying with Pastor Jim Dean had recovered from the Leech's latest attack, but not fully. He kept growing weaker, and it was getting more and more difficult to hide that fact from the people surrounding him. He kept insisting he didn’t need any help, that he could help with the research, or the house chores, or anything else that needed doing. And he tried, he truly did, but it seemed it took far less than usual to wear him out these days.

When he was alone and honest with himself, Dean would admit that this was starting to freak him out. More than that, he was scared. It should hurt, he thought, dying should hurt a lot more than this; a lot more than this heavy pressure in his chest, making it hard to breathe. The pressure on his heart, making it hard to stay warm or awake. The pressure in his head, making it hard to stay lucid and clear.

Nothing was going to make him change his mind, nothing would ever make him risk his little brother. But he had just turned twenty. He was still young, hasn’t even started his own life yet. It has always been about the Demon, his Dad's crusade, his brother's well-being. He didn’t have the chance to live yet.

It wasn’t that he was scared of dying, but dying like this, without having something he could fight, something he could hurt or kill or even escape. This sucked. Out loud. In surround sound.

Dean could tell his father was nervous, too. John was being even more short-tempered than he usually was, and that was saying something. Like saying space just got bigger. He kept calling his contacts every day, but so far, nothing worked, and Dean suspected his father even managed to burn another bridge or two. Which was just making Dean feel worse, because there weren’t many bridges left for his father, never have been.

"Did you talk to Bobby yet?" John put a finger to his lips, quickly shushing his oldest. Dean let out a deep breath, putting the book in his hand in the slowly growing pile of 'useless' and picking another from the still large pile of 'wouldn't read it unless there was a gun to my head'.

Dean flopped down on the worn armchair, rubbing his eyes and listening to his father talking on the phone. John quickly ended the call and sighed. "Anything?" Dean asked. John shook his head.

"I talked to Rachel and to Jake. I really thought Rachel might have something." He said, running a hand through his hair. "How's it going?"

"It's not. I did find this really good book on binding and summoning rituals. It's in Latin and some Aramaic, I think, but it could be useful sometime."

"But nothing about the Scepter of Amara?" John asked. Dean shook his head.

"Have you called Bobby yet?" he asked.

"No, but he's next." John said tiredly. Dean pushed himself off the chair.

"Well, I'm going to make myself something to eat. You want anything?" he offered. John studied him in the way that always made Dean squirm.

"Why don’t you call it a day? Go lie down?" John suggested. Dean shook his head.

"No, I'm fine." He lied, and it was getting obvious that no one was buying it anymore. Dean sighed. "I can't concentrate. At all." He admitted. "So, I figured, I'll make some food, maybe help Pastor Jim chop some more firewood 'cause it's freezing in here. I don’t know, do stuff that don’t require too much." He shrugged, a little embarrassed. John studied him a moment longer.

"I want you to get in bed when it gets dark." He ordered. Dean made a face.

"It gets dark at five."

"And your point being?" Dean huffed. He couldn’t really argue when his body felt so heavy and exhausted.

"You're calling Bobby?" Dean asked again, making sure. His father nodded, already dialing the number. "I'm making chilly." Dean said and left for the kitchen.

John thumped his fingers on the table, pushing papers around; things the good pastor never got around to filing or binding properly. John caught himself paying too much attention to some of the texts more than once, he figured Sammy must be having a field day.


"Bobby, it's me again." John said, rubbing his eyes. Dean was the only one getting more than a few hours of sleep at night, though it was easy to see it wasn’t doing him much good.


"Anything new?" it was difficult to stay optimistic, but Winchester refused to give up just yet.

"Not since you last called me." Bobby said. "Listen, John, you've been looking for this thing for how long now? No one's even heard of the thing. Maybe it just doesn’t exist. Demons lie, you know that." He added tiredly.

"No," John refused to go down that road, "no, it exists. She could have easily refused my offer, say Dean's gonna die and that's that. She made the deal, she asked for this scepter. It's real." Bobby sighed.

"Well, d'you ever stop to think maybe there's a reason you can't find it?" he asked. John frowned.

"What do you mean?" he asked.

"I don’t know, Johnny. Maybe it was hidden for a reason, buried and left to be forgotten? Maybe you're not supposed to go looking for it? Remember, those tasks, they're supposed to make you suffer, do things you wouldn’t…"

"Bobby," John stopped him, getting to his feet, his heart pounding. "You know where it is." He said. It wasn’t a question. Bobby was dodging him for days now.

"Now, I didn’t say that," Bobby said quickly.

"But you do, you know where it is." John said with certainty.

"No, John. I don’t." Bobby denied.

"Where is it?" John demanded.

"I told you, I don’t know."

"Bobby," there was more than a hint of a threat in John's voice.

"I'm sorry I couldn’t be of more help to you, Johnny. I wish you luck, I really do." Bobby said, hanging up before John could say anything more. John clenched his jaw, still holding the phone in his hand for a few seconds, before he put it back in its cradle.

"Dean, Sammy, get your stuff." He cried out, "We're going on a little ride."

John's had three days to stew in anger by the time they made it to Bobby's. They stopped only for gas and food, eating in the car. All three of them drove, though Dean only did when there was no other choice, and never longer than four hours.

The weather cleared up a little, the temperatures rising to a more tolerable level the souther they got. John was the one driving when they finally reached Bobby's. Both Sam and Dean were asleep when they got there. Bobby too, probably. Even his dogs were asleep. Well, most of them, anyway. John studied the old house for a moment, putting his game face on. He reached over Sam and took a gun out of the glove box. Bobby was one of his few good friends. Dean was his son. The math was easy.

Dean startled awake when John closed the car door. "Go back to sleep, I'm taking care of it." John answered his questioning look.

"You want me to come with you?" Dean offered, pushing himself up, but John just shook his head.

"I got it, buddy." He said and headed for Bobby's house. He pounded on the door, not at all caring that it was just shy of five in the morning. The dogs woke up first. Good, John thought, the ruckus was loud enough to wake the dead. The door opened a couple of minutes later, and a very sleepy looking Bobby peered out, shotgun in hand.

"I should put a hole in you just for getting me out of bed, Winchester." Bobby grunted. John pushed him out of the way, getting inside without waiting to be invited. "Well, hello to you, too, sunshine." Bobby grumbled, closing the door. John was already by the other hunter's messy kitchen table.

There were old books and scrolls along with old cups of coffee and some leftover dinner on the table. An impromptu study. Someone has been doing some homework.

"Where is it?" John demanded, skipping the hospitalities.

"The coffee? I'm fresh out. Would have put a pot on if I knew I was gonna have company. I do have some whiskey." Bobby grinned.

"The scepter. I want it." John said, un-amused. Bobby sighed.

"I don’t have the scepter, John." He said, walking over past John and preparing a fresh pot of coffee.

"But you know where it is." John clipped. "I'm not joking around here, Bobby, I want this scepter, and I'll do whatever it takes to get it."

"So I see." Bobby noted. "I still don’t have it, John." He added, "Want some whiskey in your coffee?" John scowled.

"You think I'm playing with you here, Bobby?"

"John, you have no idea what you're looking for." Bobby snapped.

"I'm looking for a way to save my son's life!" John yelled, pounding on the table. Bobby winced, and then scratched his beard.

"Your son is the one that got marked?" he asked, "I'm so sorry to hear that, John."

"You know where the scepter is, I know you do. Tell me!" John demanded.

"I can't do that, Johnny. I'm sorry." Bobby said in earnest.

"This is my son! Dean's life! He will die, do you get that? My son will die!" John yelled. Bobby searched the kitchen for a couple of clean cups among the piles of dirty dishes.

"John, I'm really sorry. Dean's a good kid, he doesn’t deserve this. I really wish I could help."

"You can. Just tell me where the freaking scepter is!" Bobby sighed.

"I can't do that, Winchester." He said, taking a sip of whiskey. "This thing, it's dangerous. It's been hidden ages ago, and for a good reason. It has to stay protected, it has to stay secret. Brave men gave their lives to keep supernatural shit away from this thing, to keep it hidden. It's supposed to have terrible power, John, one that cannot fall into the wrong hands."

"Don’t you think I already figured that part out?" John snapped, "A witch wants this thing that much, it can't be good – I get that. Trust me when I say she won't get to keep it for long, Bobby, but I will do whatever I need to save my son's life."

"I know, John." Bobby sighed again. "But I can't help you. Not with this. The good of the many outweighs the good of the one, you know that."

"That's bullshit! You think I give a damn about that? Where is it, Bobby? I'm not going to ask you again!" John demanded.

"Dad?" both men whipped their heads towards the front door, where one of Bobby's Rottweilers was salivating all over Dean's pant leg, wagging its tail. The dog was so big Dean was having some trouble staying upright, and Bobby called the dog over.

"I thought I told you to stay in the car." John said gruffly.

"I heard yelling. And Sammy snores." Dean said, then smiled at Bobby. "Hey Bobby."

"Dean," Bobby nodded in greeting, "Look at you, all grown up. And handsome, too. Must be from your mother's side. Probably has to beat the ladies away with a stick, huh?" Dean smiled awkwardly.

"Dad said you know about the scepter." Dean said, voice rising at the end, making it a question. Bobby glanced at John, shook his head.

"I'm sorry, kid. I really wish I could help you." he said. Dean paled, eyes darting around, running his hand over his mouth.

"Oh." He said, trying to mask the sudden onslaught of panic, the way the world started spinning, losing focus. The way the blood started rushing in his ears and his heart started pounding. The way his legs suddenly couldn’t carry his weight anymore. This was it. Game over.

"Hey, take it easy there, champ." Bobby said quickly, rushing forward to hold onto Dean. "Come on, you need to sit down." He said, leading Dean by his shoulders to a nearby chair, and then offering him a glass of water.

"Bobby," there was warning and plea in John's voice. Look at him, John pleaded with his eyes, you know him, you care for him, how can you do this?

"Can I get you anything, Dean?" Bobby asked, ignoring John. Dean shook his head.

"So I guess it's over, huh?" he asked his Dad, forcing himself to smile. John frowned, glaring at Bobby. And then he noticed something on the table. He gave Bobby a questioning look and Bobby quickly stood between him and the table. That was all the affirmation John needed.

"Dean, get back to the car." John ordered coolly. Dean gave a slight nod, getting to his feet.

"Nice to see you again, Bobby." He said. Bobby smiled at him.

"You too, kid. Good luck." Bobby said, watching him as he went out the door, one of the pups at his heel. Bobby looked away for one second. It was enough. "John." He growled. "Put that down."

"I don’t think so." John clipped.

"You have no idea what you're messing with here, Winchester." Bobby raised his voice. "This isn’t just some toy! This is serious stuff. Ancient, hard-core stuff! If it's been hidden, there's a damn good reason for it, so put the goddamn book down!" he was yelling now. John met his glare unfazed. "John, if you take this book, I swear I will hunt you down. Won't be the only one, either." Bobby threatened. John didn’t look away, didn’t seemed bothered by the threat. Slowly, almost carelessly, he ripped the pages of the old book out, stuffing them in his coat pocket.

"You can keep the book." He said dryly, heading for the door as Bobby cursed furiously.

John was just out the door when he heard the buckshot being cocked. He stopped, but didn’t turn. "If you're gonna shoot me, shoot." He said, then turned his head slightly. "This is my boy, Bobby. I'll die for him."

"Dad!" neither men turned their look to the younger hunter. Bobby hesitated, looking furiously from John to the two younger men just outside his truck.

"Don’t do it, John." Bobby warned. John said nothing, just started walking away. "The scepter can't leave its place! It can't leave the protections set around it, or there'll be hell to pay! You hear me, Winchester? It has to stay where it is! The price is just too high, you hear me?"

"Screw you, Bobby." John said and kept walking.


"Get in the car, Sammy."


Where it all started >> 2 >> 3 >> 4 >> 5 >> 6 >> 7 >> 8 >> 9 >> 10 >> 11 >> 12 >> 13 >> 14  >> 15  >> Seeking Help


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Current Music: hey, good idea.

11 comments or Leave a comment
subtly_modded From: subtly_modded Date: April 30th, 2007 05:22 pm (UTC) (Link)
Damn, this is one tough situation you've put the family in. and Bobby, as well. good storytellin'!

there was one typo that got me -- Dean was making "chili". the other spelling is for when you feel cold. *little smile* don't hate me! i'm a spelling-biotch like that.
sams1ra From: sams1ra Date: May 2nd, 2007 07:41 am (UTC) (Link)
(Deleted comment)
sams1ra From: sams1ra Date: May 2nd, 2007 05:49 am (UTC) (Link)
thanks =)
(Deleted comment)
sams1ra From: sams1ra Date: May 2nd, 2007 07:39 am (UTC) (Link)
who, me? um... yeah =D
glad you're enjoying this.
coell From: coell Date: May 1st, 2007 06:45 am (UTC) (Link)
Daaaaamn! Great update!
sams1ra From: sams1ra Date: May 2nd, 2007 07:37 am (UTC) (Link)
thank you.
kamikaze_redux From: kamikaze_redux Date: May 1st, 2007 08:09 pm (UTC) (Link)
sams1ra From: sams1ra Date: May 2nd, 2007 05:51 am (UTC) (Link)

hee ;)
(Deleted comment)
sams1ra From: sams1ra Date: May 6th, 2007 05:57 pm (UTC) (Link)

11 comments or Leave a comment