After the Fall

Chapter 15

Michael looked at the two young humans that Inias had brought to the office. And they were young although the girl especially carried herself with a maturity beyond her years. "You are friends of Sam and Dean Winchester?"

"Yes, we're hunters." Krissy said. "I met them when my father disappeared while hunting a vetala."

"Ah so like Sam and Dean, you are the child of a hunter. Your father must have taught you much." Michael said.

"Not really, I learned most of the how to kill things part from Sam and Dean, and then another hunter by the name of Victor Rogers." Krissy said. "We trusted him and then found out that he was using us to kill innocent people for a vampire. So I know you're supposed to be the head angel or something, but we want to see Sam and Dean."

Michael looked at the two for a moment. "I suppose that is a reasonable desire. Castiel will return with them soon. Until then perhaps you would like to take a short tour with me? I think that you will find what we are doing here…interesting."

Michael went and opened the door ushering the two young people out into the hallway. "Welcome to the world's first hunter's school."

"I do not understand why we are here? Are we not still supposed to be engaged in patrolling the town?" Verchiel asked as Jody parked the car in front of the small town diner.

"We are still working but humans need to eat." Jody explained. "And business owners like having us eat in their establishments. It's also another way to build trust."

Verchiel held open the door. "I do not understand this lack of trust among you.

"It's a human thing, it comes with free will." Jody said as she entered the diner and slid into a booth. "We can be jerks and we know all of our fellow humans can be just as big a jerk as we can."

"Well I don't think anyone will ever call you a jerk Jody Mills."

Jody looked up to see Benny standing by the table with a pad in his hand. "Benny, I was wondering where you had gotten off to. Dean said you had a personal issue."

The vampire gave a huge smile. "Elizabeth honey, come here a minute. There's someone that I want you to meet." Benny called to a young woman pouring coffee a few tables away. If possible his smile grew even wider as she approached. "This is my great granddaughter, Elizabeth. She's the new owner of this diner. Elizabeth, this is Sheriff Jody Mills and Undersheriff Verchiel."

The young woman smiled at them "Verchiel? Only one name, like Balthazar. Are you and angel too?"

"Balthazar is my brother." Verchiel answered. "You are acquainted with him?"

"Yes, He and Benny came down to Louisiana to get me and bring me here." She answered. "I've met a few others also. I don't know why Dean doesn't like you all."

"Dean's first meeting with them wasn't as friendly as yours was." Jody said. "But I'm guessing you haven't met Zachariah yet either. He is an assbutt as Castiel likes to say. Even the Devil is a sweetheart compared to him."

"The devil?" Elizabeth looked at Benny questioningly.

"She means Lucifer." Benny chuckled. "Either the guy has done a complete 180 or he's gotten a bad rap over the years."

"My brother is still just as condescending of humans as he has always been." Verchiel said. "He simply makes exceptions for a select few. But granted, he is no longer plotting to wipe your existence from the universe."

"Let's not talk about the apocalypse." Jody said as she picked up the menu. "Can I get a burger with a side salad and a sweet tea?"

"Sure thing." Elizabeth said and turned to Verchiel. "And for you?"

"I do not require sustenance." Verchiel answered.

"Bring him the same." Jody said. "You guys may not require sustenance but your vessels do."

"We maintain our vessels through grace; they have no need of food or drink." Verchiel explained.

"There's more to eating than just getting nutrients, there's also the flavor of what you eat; it tastes good. We like how certain foods taste and eating that food satisfies us in a way that has nothing to do with nutrition." Jody said. "Plus I've noticed something, some of you guys do eat, and they act a lot different than most of you."

"You have seen my siblings eat?" Verchiel asked. "But it is unnecessary!"

"Tell that to Gabriel when he sees something sweet. Or better yet, get between Balthazar and his Beluga Caviar." Jody said. "For that matter put one of Dean's bacon cheeseburgers in front of Castiel. Anyhow, they eat and they are much more relaxed than the rest of you. Maybe it's because their vessels are happier because they aren't hungry?"

"There is a certain logic to your thinking Jody Mills. I will eat." Verchiel said.

"I'm still trying to figure out why you don't have a problem with our son being a demon." John said as the Winchester's (minus Sam who was still in hell with Lucifer overseeing the settling in of the nephilim) walked in the door to the bunker.

"Part demon." Mary corrected. "He's also destined to be a Guardian just like the rest of his family. Besides, knowing the purpose of hell now and the fact that Sam is a big part of hell filling its purpose, why shouldn't we both be proud of him?"

"Hell, demons you know the very things you were raised hunting? The things that I taught them to hunt and he's one of them." John said exasperated.

"Well, while you and Dean were busy taking advantage of Hell's liquor cabinet, I had a talk with Gabriel." Mary explained. "Hell was a part of God's plan, a place for the human souls who made the wrong choices in life to atone and be admitted into heaven."

"God intended all that?" John questioned. "I find it hard to swallow that he wants all this suffering."

"Mary Winchester speaks the truth." Castiel said appearing in front of the group. "In much the same way as a blacksmith uses a forge to heat and reheat a steel blade to remove imperfections, so hell was always meant to temper the human soul. Sam and Lucifer working together will remove the imperfections from those who fall short of their heavenly reward and allow them to be welcomed to their eternal home."

"It's hard to think of hell as something good when humans have thought of it as this place of suffering forever." Dean said.

"Not forever Dean, only since Dante Alighieri penned The Inferno. Before then you had no concept of hell." Castiel corrected. "But I was searching for you for a reason, a young woman named Krissy Chambers came looking for you. It seems that she and her companions crossed paths with one of Abaddon's 'immortal' creatures."

"Crap! Is she alright? Where is she?" Dean demanded.

"She and her companion were unharmed but another companion was lost, I believe they referred to her as Josephine?" Castiel said. "Inias has remained with them and taken them to Michael. I believe that our presence would be welcomed. Michael has no experience with young humans."

"Do you really think this is going to work?" Sam asked as he and Lucifer sat in the archangel's office.

"Of course it will. I have given Jack strict instructions to feed Karel information on Hadrian's movements." Lucifer smirked.

"We don't even know what Hadrian is doing, how do you expect Jack to give him updates?" Sam looked at Lucifer's smirk. "I thought you didn't lie?"

"I don't lie to you, everyone else is fair game." Lucifer's smirk grew even wider. "Anything he lets slip at this point is a bonus. We need to figure out what Hadrian's plan is. It will put us that much closer to figuring out what Abaddon's plans are, other than resurrecting herself and the rest of the nephilim."

"And what about Zora? Do you think we can convince her to help us?" Sam asked.

"I don't know that we can get her to actively help, but at least she won't help Hadrian either." Lucifer picked up two files and slid them into a desk drawer before locking it. Standing up he stretched. "Ready to go back?"

"Yeah, Ajax is probably having a fit by now wanting to go out." Sam said.

"I take it he's fitting in well, then?" Lucifer asked. "I wasn't sure how Dean would take it having a hellhound under foot."

Sam snorted. "Dean spoils him more than anyone else in the bunker, but he won't admit it. I caught him a couple of days ago grilling steaks and he happened to accidentally drop one on the floor for Ajax. Like we didn't know when he bought an extra one what was he was planning." Sam grinned as Lucifer let out a laugh. "We just let him live in his little fantasy world.

"That's probably for the best, Father forbid he have to admit to affection for a hellhound." Lucifer said.

Sam smirked "That would be worse than hell in Dean's mind."

Lucifer grinned as he and Sam appeared outside of the bunker. "I will check in with you later, Jack has instructions to contact you if anything comes up. Michael has been calling me for the past hour, it seems he needs to speak with me about some conspiracy between the two youngest Archangels."

"Gabriel and Raphael conspiring? Did I miss the blizzard in hell?" Sam asked.

"Believe it or not, those two were thick as thieves at one point." Lucifer said. "But I don't know of any case where their plotting was of major concern, more than likely Michael is overreacting. By the way Belarus is arranging for the keeper of the hounds to pay a visit to check up on Ajax."

"The keeper of the hounds?" Sam asked.

"Hell's version of a veterinarian. Normally hellhounds don't remain outside of hell for this long of a period. It's just a check up." Lucifer said.

"It's safe for him to be up here right?" Sam questioned concerned for his pet's health.

"It should be." Lucifer said. "But he still needs regular check ups."

The sound of an engine drew their attention as the Impala came to a stop next to them. "Get in Sam. We need to go to Michael's office. Krissy is here, they ran into a werewolf, one of those impossible to kill ones. Inias took her and Aiden to Michael."

"Crap!" Sam said as he opened the door and slid into the passenger side.

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