After the Fall

Chapter 26

The horseman took a few moments to slowly survey the room. "Castiel, feeling a bit less godly are we?" Death commented seeing that the angel had positioned himself a little behind his elder brothers. "And Gabriel, you seem to be feeling a little less…paganly. Tell me Sam, is there some particular reason why Lucifer is hiding behind you?"

"Well to be fair, Luci actually has a valid reason to fear you. After all didn't he summon you and bind you?" Balthazar said.

"Not helping Balthazar." Gabriel whispered to the seraph and poked him in the side with his elbow.

"Gabriel, if I think hard enough, I can uncover a valid reason to smite or otherwise make existence miserable for everyone in this room." Death said flipping open a pizza box. "So rather than allow me the time to do so, perhaps you would care to explain exactly why I have been called to this gathering?"

"We need you to resurrect Samael." Dean blurted.

Death startled at the blunt demand. "And why would I want to resurrect an angel who has been scattered since before you humans stopped hunting mammoth? Pizza and pickle chips, no matter how good are not incentive enough for a 'favor' of that magnitude."

"You have displayed a certain indulgence toward Dean Winchester over the years. Your returned Sam's soul and tried to shield him from the memories of the cage and you also retrieved Adam Milligan's soul from hell." Castiel pointed out. "These actions did not benefit you, they benefited Dean."

"Wait Adam isn't in the cage?" Dean butted in. "You didn't say anything about getting Adam out! You made me choose!'

"I asked you which brother you wanted me to save; I never said that I wasn't going to save them both. Sam's soul was simply an incentive. Would you have agreed to wear my ring otherwise?" Death asked.

"So you were scheming to get to Dean all along." Sam said.

"The two you had already effectively dealt with my 'brothers', it should have been apparent that I was not a fan of the impending apocalypse." Death said.

"I thought you were supposed to be impartial." Dean said.

"I am impartial; Death is and always will be the great equalizer. When your time comes, it comes." Death said. "However I don't like imbalances. Life and death must maintain a certain balance; the apocalypse would have destroyed that balance." The horseman turned to Dean "Now let's dispense with this unnecessary and time consuming dance shall we? There's a reason you summoned me Dean. Should I choose to resurrect Samael, what is in it for me?"

"You already know dammit!" Dean said. "You can here because you already know."

"Yes I do have an inkling of what is being offered, but I want to see if you are capable of swallowing your pride. I want to hear you say it." Death said smugly.

"I'll be a damned reaper, okay?" Dean spat. "Is that what you wanted to hear?"

"Yes, it is." Death said. "And I can see that our first order of business will be to work on your attitude. Be at the Devil's Gate in Wyoming at midnight three nights from tonight and I will return Samael to you, in exchange for Dean."

The horseman straightened his cuffs then glared at the group. "By the way I can't stand Philly cheesesteak."

Hadrian looked around the clearing checking to make sure that everything was in place. He still had not found the means to resurrect Abaddon, but she would not have taken such a drastic step without having a way to return and lead them.

This ritual was ancient and involved calling and binding Death. It also took days of preparation to prepare the site. The tiniest mistake could be catastrophic. Raising a horseman unbound was begging for trouble.

Hadrian tugged on the leash pulling the goat behind him to the altar. The goat was the first sacrifice, there had to be three animal and/or human sacrifices on consecutive nights and on the fourth night, the sacrifice of a supernatural being and Death would rise bound to his will.

The nephilim who had joined him encircled the altar in preparation of the start of the ritual. Hadrian looked at the stone dagger sitting on the altar and pointed to two of his followers.

"Bind the animal and place it upon the altar. The blood must wash the stone." The Nephilim ordered. "There can be no mistakes. We need the horseman bound to us and we will force him to raise our cousin, Abaddon."

As soon as the animal was positioned, Hadrian began chanting in ancient Enochian. As the chant reached a peak, he raised the dagger and thrust it into the throat of the animal piecing the jugular vein. Hadrian continued to chant until the animals death throes had ended.

The other nephilim looked around in confusion since nothing had happened. One of them spoke up, "It didn't work, nothing happened."

"Of course it didn't you fool!" Hadrian snapped. "It takes sacrifices over several nights to raise him bound to me." Hadrian made note of the nephilim who had spoken. He had found the next sacrifice.

"You told us the angels could be trusted!" the vampire snapped.

"And the can be trusted. They've got bigger fish to fry right now." Benny said trying to calm the other vampire. "As long as we aren't killing humans, they aren't going to bother us."

The other vampire snorted. "Yeah right. Tell that to the Alpha. One of those winged bastards snatched Carla right out of our nest. She was new, hasn't even been turned a month."

"I'm telling you, they can be trusted. That's on the word of the Archangel Michael himself. No angel is going to go against his decree, especially when all the archangels are on board with it." Benny said. "Look I'll prove it."

"That's a bad habit you've picked up from the Winchesters." Balthazar said as he appeared wearing a pair of black silk pajama pants and nothing else. "I do have a life you know and these constant interruptions at the most inopportune times are quite annoying."

"Looks like I interrupted something." Benny said. "Sorry but I think you might want to talk to Arthur here. He and the Alpha think an angel snatched a vampire last night."

"We wouldn't dare unless the vampire in question had proven itself a danger." Balthazar said. "The four stooges were very clear on the consequences of doing so. I would rather not have my wings torn out thank you."

"The bastard that invaded our nest and grabbed a newly turned vampire last night had wings." The vampire said. "I don't know of any other creatures that look like people and have wings like a bird."

Balthazar snapped his fingers vanishing the glass of wine he had been drinking to somewhere and materializing a photograph in its place. "Is this the creature that took your nest mate?"

The vampire took the photo and its fangs came out in its rage. "That's the feathered bastard alright."

"That creature is not an angel, it's a nephilim. His name is Hadrian, and he is the reason that you haven't had hunters on your asses 24/7. We're all too busy trying to track him down and destroy him." Balthazar said all business. "I need all the details you can give me."

Dean was busy under the hood of the Impala tuning it up. It's not that the car needed a tune up, but working on his baby was a good way to relieve stress. The hunter pulled his head from under the hood and turned to the side intended to grab a larger socket from the tool box next to him. "Son of a bitch!"

"I think daughter would be a bit more appropriate Dean." Tessa said with a frown.

"What the hell are you doing here?" Dean asked as his heartbeat returned to normal.

"Believe me I would rather be anywhere else but the boss sent me. Since you are going to be joining our ranks soon, he wanted me to show you some of the basics of being a reaper." Tess said. "I suppose you could say that I'm you're mentor."

"I had to wear his ring; I think I've got it." Dean said as he sat the ratchet down.

"You aren't taking his place Dean, you will be a reaper. With more authority than us; but still a reaper, and you have to learn what it means." Tessa said. "And I don't have much time to teach you, less than 72 hours. So get used to it, you're stuck with me."

"I thought he was planning on trading Samael for me?" Dean said.

"He is, but there are other things going on. Hadrian has started a ritual to bind him. You need to be ready to take his place in Hadrian's spell." Tessa said. "We can't afford for Hadrian to bind him."

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