"Memories are bullets. Some whiz by and only spook you. Others tear you open and leave you in pieces."
~Richard Kadrey, Kill the Dead
All around were dull crème colored walls, dark red carpet and two large windows with dark curtains shading just about all outside light trying to work its way inside. The ceiling was of a 'popcorn' or stucco texture that flaked off at the slightest touch, covering just about everything; sparkles and all. The door leading into this bland room was wooden and bright white. A large crack sat towards the top of the frame where six rectangles were etched on either side with a golden swirled handle as well. Behind that door, was a shelved closet with many miscellaneous things varying from old school papers to old toys she played with when she was little, to even random astrology books and drawings for friends. To the left of those shelves was sort of a built-in desk with two drawers filled with more papers ranging from old drawings of original characters created what seemed like forever ago, to forgotten stories, to old CD's of artists that haven't played music in who knows how long. On top of the white desk, was a little purple plate that had a painted black wolf standing on a cliff behind a bright white moon sitting in the back left corner. A few small black and white feathers were glued to either side of said plate as it was standing on a stand that resembled the cliff in the painting while hanging up behind the plate was a small, cobalt colored dream catcher with black feathers. Continuing to the left was another shelved closet but it didn't reach the floor like the other one did and instead of four shelves there were two while below where three white drawers with red small handles. Inside of those drawers were filled with clothes, more old drawings and stories, along with a few barely working pair of headphones that were sealed inside a Ziploc bag shoved wherever.
The wall running next to said closet was mainly bare except for two wolf paintings hanging up and two large windows. Both windows had dark blue curtains with red, white and blue star shaped pattern littered all across them. Sitting between the first window and a wolf painting was a large bright green plush club chair with matching foot rest to the right. Past the first window, was another wolf painting that had a light brown frame encasing the masterpiece of a pack of wolves walking in the snow, howling to the stars and in those stars was a faint outline of another wolf howling. The painting sat proudly despite the collecting dust on the frame and on the glass protecting the image. In front of the painting was a lamp stand and nightstand combination that had a horse jewelry box and alarm clock sitting on top. To the left of the stand, in front of the second window running along the adjacent wall was a large queen sized bed covered in wolf blankets and one peacefully sleeping, curly haired, brunette over the sheets. She wore a plain gray, form fitting, T-shirt, a pair of dark blue jeans and plain white socks. Her boots were sitting in front of the club chair's footrest; the long silver blade was nowhere to be seen.
Following along the length of the all and the bed was a doorway surrounded by navy crown molding leading into a room about half the size of the room behind. It looked to be some sort of walk-in closet with bland white walls and stucco ceiling that slanted causing the room to look lopsided, a golden rod connecting from the slant to the other wall on the right side of the room towards the very back that held up carious clothes and hangers. Two old dressers sat dead center of the small room with some jewelry boxes and random assortment of books sitting scattered across the top. Just to the left of the doorway was a light colored door with a golden doorknob and a medium sized bookshelf filled full of many fantasy and sci-fi, to the right. Everything around the room looked old and dusty like it hasn't been used in years.
A sharp intake of air cut off the silence of the room as I slowly start to awake. My eyes fluttered open, my vision was blurry, I felt like I slept for a month, my head felt a little foggy, and I'm still dead tired. Flipping over onto my side, I notice that in front of me are red, bleary numbers which I could've sworn it read '7:20'. But based on lighting that was coming in the room from below the curtains, I'd say that wasn't quite right. Rolling up out of bed, I got to my feet until I felt a small headache starting to form. Rubbing my eyes to try and wake up, I made my way out of the room only to run into the corner of a desk that sat on the opposite side of the door. I must've hit it hard enough with my right hip because it made a bang against the wall that made everything on top, including a 3 way touch lamp with the glass gone off it, rattle. "SHIT!" I cursed, rubbing my hip in hopes of trying to stop the pain because, dammit, that hurt.
Walking out of that room and into a little hallway type of thing, still kinda out of it but starting to finally wake up and become alert again, I notice a bathroom to my right, a large bedroom also to my right but straight ahead with stairs on the same side as well. Into the bathroom I went, and it wasn't a very large bathroom, but it was just the right size for one person to fit. It had a large sink counter top with cupboards below it, a large mirror and cabinet combination that had four large hanging lights above it, a shower sitting the in the corner to the left, a large cabinet in the other corner, a toilet in front of it and a plastic mini shelf sitting next to it. Flipping on the lights and the faucet, scooping up the running water in my hands, I splash it in my face. The cold water sending a jolt, making me fully alert. I wipe off my face with a small hand towel I grabbed from out of the cabinet by the toilet, hung it on the towel rack beside me and walked back out into the small hallway.
Something about this place seemed familiar. I don't what it was. I look back into the room I woke up in and I see my boots standing by what looks to be a club chair. How the hell did they end up over there? Why're they there anyways? Walking back in, I put them back on and notice that my blade is gone. "Okay. Where the crap is my blade?" I ask aloud, looking around the room, but then I freeze in place as I come to a realization.
My eyes go wide, seeing that I'm looking at something I haven't seen in about five years. It was a wolf painting on the wall by the bed. I knew that looked familiar somehow. That's when everything hit me. The memories; both good and bad. The times of bright sunshine outside being with two quarter horses, the two dogs that lived here, my mom and dad, the night that all started it and the night that pushed it over the edge. This was a place I didn't think I would ever return to again. I'm...Home.
Alissa ran out of the room and to the stairs, creaking of the wood and the thumping of the her boots as she hurriedly made her way down, her feet occasionally slipping here and there on the carpeted steps, making her loose her balance. Hanging onto the oak colored banister on the last part. She ran as fast as she could out the door to her left, down the mud room stairs and flinging open the storm and screen door open, letting them bang against the frames, she ran down the small hill past the large tree by the garage, and along the well-worn path to the newer looking, green and white barn.
"Alissa? Oh my God, you're up! Are you okay? What's wrong?" A female voice called after her franticly, trying to keep up with the woman but was a little hard in a pair of black heels. Spinning back around on her heels in the mud room, she came to face a certain tan trench coated angel standing with a hardened look on his face in the doorway. Letting out a frustrated huff of air, she crosses her arms and glares at him. "You could go after her you know," no response came out of the angel as he turned around and went back inside to continue what he was doing earlier. "Really? That's all you got to say to that? Just walk back in like nothing even happened? Huh. Aren't you just Mr. Care bear?" She follows him back inside the house, shutting the door behind her a little harsher than intended.
"I do care," Castiel replies somewhat monotonously as he scans over the papers scattered across the large table top once again, looking for something he somehow missed the first few times around.
"Then why the fuck didn't you go after her?! You brought her here! You know damn well what happened, so why bring it back up again?" She yelled at the angel, getting into his personal space, uncrossing her arms to place them on her hips with narrowed eyes.
"Because she needs to move past this," he responded slightly irritated. He doesn't look to the blonde woman, but instead shifts his gaze to the long silver object at the opposite end of the table. He lets out a small sigh before he continues. "There are things of greater importance that need to be handled."
"And just what were those again?" Amber inquired, not missing a beat. When she didn't get a response out of the angel she slowly stepped back from him. "Uh huh. That's what I thought," she waited a couple more moments to see if the angel would do anything else before speaking again. "Okay, that's it. I'm going out there. Since you don't seem to want to," spinning around on her heels again, she walked away with a flip of her hair and anger in her eyes.
I had to get out there. I didn't think I'd be able to stay in that house any longer. Why the hell was I brought back here anyways? What was so important that I just needed to come back here again? I don't understand it. It's been six years. Six years since-No. I don't want to think about that. I said to myself as I lay down on a bale of hay towards the giant stack in the back of newer barn. It wasn't a very large barn but it was enough to have three, ten by fifteen foot stalls, a thirty foot cement walkway and a twenty foot long run in for the horses that were once here. I felt like shutting down and just stare blankly at nothing, but I know that's not going to solve anything. Every time I felt one of those thoughts I would take a quick, large inhale and slowly release it. It helped for a little while, at least. I didn't realize someone had come into the barn until I heard a concerned Amber broke me of my thoughts. "Alissa..? You in here?" I heard the sound of her heels against the sound of the cement walkway, walking a little slow towards me. I shift my body where I was laying down to sitting up, having my legs curled up to my chest as I lean against the bales behind me, my curly hair blocking my face. A sniffle or two make their escape into the air.
"Hey," Alissa mumbles out as she tries to keep her and her voice from breaking.
"Hey," her friend replies quietly as she sits down carefully on the same bale next to her.
They sat there for a moment or two in complete silence as they collected their thoughts. It was Alissa who spoke first. "Might as well get it over with..," was the first thing to speed through her mind. She in a large, quiet, inhale and slowly released it back into the world, calming herself in the process. "You know how I got started into hunting, right?" Alissa asked her, staring down at her feet, hair obscuring her face.
"Bits and pieces of it," she answered back.
"Do you want me to tell you, again?" Flipping the hair out of her face to look at her friend. She rested her cheek on her arm that lay across her knees.
"Only if you want to," Amber replied back carefully with concern written on her face. She wanted to be patient with her friend since she knew that this was a somewhat difficult subject to talk about.
Alissa moved her head to her chin was resting on her arm as she looked out in front of her at the white interior of the barn. She took in one large breath and slowly released again. "It was just a regular night. I heard a noise that was coming from downstairs that woke me up. I thought maybe it was the house making noises because y'know, old homes make bunch of creaks and everything," she could see her friend nod in agreement in the corner of her eye. "Anyway, I look at the clock, and it's about like two 'er three in the morning."
Alissa slowly got up out of bed and headed for the doorway of the room. Normally she would just ignore the sound and go back to sleep but something didn't quite feel right. She went back into her room, into the walk-in closet to the dresser, pulling out a long silver sword with a medium hilt, triangular shaped blade and a metallic smooth surface. Walking back out her room, she crept down the stairs, careful of the creaky steps on the way down with the silver sword held tightly in her hand as it was pressed against her left thigh. As she was walking down the stairs she noticed that the overhead light above the sink wasn't plugged it like it normally would be which set off some rad flags in her head as she looked around to find that a lamp was on in the living room along with the sounds of fast shuffling of papers echoing in the silent room.
"So, I get all the way down the stairs and slowly walk to the living room, but I stopped dead in my tracks because then, I hear someone rummaging through a bunch of papers and everything. I slowly start to back up n' head upstairs to go wake mom and dad 'cause there's two intruders in the house and floor decided at that moment to squeak and say 'Hey, here I am!' Shuffling stops and I freeze like, 'Shit. What now?' Next thing I did was start to run back to the stairs. I'm about half way up the stairs when I feel something grab my arm and pull me back. My first instinct was to start punching, kicking. I realized I still had the blade in my hand. I jabbed whoever had me right in arm, he dropped me and I yell up the stairs to hopefully get mom and dad to come down and get me out of here. Just got a word out and the dude I just stabbed comes up behind me and covers my mouth! I just happen to look up and I could've sworn his eyes turned black and he was smiling this great big and really creepy smile."
As Alissa was explaining her start into the hunting world, she looked like she was starting to relax despite the story subject. Maybe telling all of this was kinda therapeutic for her. Who knew but herself? She opened up, shifting her body on the bale to where she was facing her friend with her legs crossed in front of her and her hands resting in her lap but occasionally animate them for dramatic effect of the tale.
Alissa tries to stab him one more time but fails when the guy knocks it out of her hand and end up crashing into one of wooden chairs surrounding the dining room table. She struggles as much as she can. Punching, kicking and yelling through the guy's hand to hopefully get away.
"Hey!" A commanding voice cuts through the air. The guy holding her stops which gave her enough time to elbow him right in the face. He drops her with a grunt and she runs to the dining room to find her dropped blade. When she turns around she finds that both of her parents are up and trying to take out the guy. Her mother tries to go to her when the guy grabs her and throws her into one of the walls in the kitchen causing her to yelp in pain.
"Mom!" Alissa yells as she ran to the intruder with her blade to hopefully injure the guy but failed when he socked her right in the jaw hard causing her to stumble back and fall, knocking her unconscious. The last thing she thought she heard before she blacked out was the faint flapping of wings.
"By the time I wake up and everything's all said and done, mom had some bruising, dad with a hurt shoulder and legs, basically my everything hurt, the guy was a demon as I come to find out a couple days later, left in a hurry, bleeding everywhere," Alissa crossed her arms and leaned to the side to the bale stacked up next to her.
Another moment of silence passed but they both knew what was coming and that it was something that couldn't be avoided. Amber knew she needed to ask this but she sure as hell didn't want to for fear of what the answer would be. Taking quick second and a breath to calm herself down, she let the question roll right out. "But what happened that made you not want to come here anymore?" She didn't look up to meet her friend's gaze as she didn't want to come face to face with her friend's struggle to keep her scarred emotions at bay.
Alissa sucked in a breath, stilled for only a second that seemed to last for a lifetime before turning back around to how she was sitting before. Her back against the bale of hay, her legs to her chest with arms wrapped around, and her chin resting on her knees. She stared straight ahead at the white wall then slowly moving to the metal cabinet with the one of the doors dented in as she released that held back air. "It's been about six years," she stated. "Six. Years. Since I've been here. I can remember it so clearly. Everything. Like it just happened not even a day ago..." She was trying her best to keep her composure for the sake of telling this horrid tale. "I was going out for a supply run and as I was heading out of the house, I felt that something was off. I don't know what it was so I pushed it to the back of mind and went on my way. As I was in town, getting everything, I still had that nagging feeling that there was something wrong," she could feel the tears start to well up in her eyes as she mentally tried to prepare herself on what was coming up next. She knew that this would be the hardest thing to talk about.
Alissa pulled up the driveway in front of the white two care garage of the red, bricked, two story farmhouse. She put the car into park and cut the engine. Grabbing the bags from the store out of the passenger seat next to her, she got out and shut the car door behind her. She unlocked the large white door into the mudroom but before she even got fully in the doorway, a strong scent of blood and sulfur hit her nose like a brick wall, causing a twisting of her stomach. The feeling only got worse when she looked up to see the door into the kitchen was wide open. She put the bags on the floor along the wall carefully trying not to make them rustle as she went to grab the blade the kept stashed in between the pant leg and the inner boot. Slowly she crept to the mudroom stairs and through the door to find splatters and large pools of blood everywhere. On the wraparound of the small kitchen, the cupboards, cabinets and even on the walls.
"And when I mean everywhere I mean everywhere," she paused to slow down and recollect herself. "I kept going. Had to push past the amount of blood that was there and I don't think I've ever seen that much at one time."
Alissa crept further in to the room and came across the most horrendous sight. She didn't expect this but somehow her 'nagging feeling' ended up to be right after all because she stopped dead in her tracks where she saw on the floor was her mom and dad sprawled out, eyes wide open in shock, blood covering their faces, clothes and weapons. She didn't know what emotion bubbled up first. All she could do was stand there. It felt like she went completely numb, hot tears running down her face. Slowly she turned around and came to see writing along the wall by the stairs that said "We told you we would be back" in which it was written in the same blood that was pooled around her feet.
"There was so much blood. Their faces are seared into my brain. And it wasn't just my parents but all of the animals we had too. Our dachshund Tina, the sheltie Zoey, our calico cat Katie, and even the two quarter horses, Star and Babe…I can't just un-see that…" She felt those same tears she felt on that day start to well up. She couldn't stop them as sobs broke out with shaking shoulders. "I can remember just sitting there on the floor crying, screaming, wailing, wondering why I didn't just trust my instinct and stay home. Maybe they might still be..," she trailed off as she cried out, finally breaking apart, resting her forehead on her arms. She felt a hand on her back rubbing slow circles but then was pulled in close to what could only be described as the boob-squish-cradle-hug. She held Alissa close like she was a mother cradling a child, rocking them sided to side, trying to hold herself back from breaking down herself as some 'It's going to be okay, Alissa..."'s, and "You're right here with me... It's okay... It's all going to be okay..."'s were uttered in hopes to comfort her closest friend in some way. "No one should have to go through that. Ever," Amber thought to herself quietly.
It almost felt like a century before Alissa calmed down from the amount of tears, the pain from the loss and the shoved down forgotten emotions of long ago. She breathed in a heavy breath and let it out slowly to steady her herself once again. "It took me about two weeks to fully snap myself out of my trance; I felt like I was on autopilot. I finally decided to give them a hunter's funeral instead of just bury them six feet under just for some black eyes to take possession of. So I set the pyre out in back on the brush pile. It's the least I can do for them after those black eyed bastards felt like killing my family for shits and giggles. All they seem to do is screw with you and ruin your life one way or another. I swear to God, the next one I come across, I won't hesitate to rip it to fucking shreds," she added through gritted teeth towards the end while her eyes turn cold for the moment but faded away just the same. She didn't realize that her friend flinched at that last statement made.
"Well, you're made it this far which is saying something. You can keep going. Keep pushing on," Amber responded back a little hesitant but brushed it off. "How did you meet Bobby by the way? I don't think I ever heard that story before."
A small smile formed on Alissa's lips, wiping away the excess tears on her face. She unfolded her arms wrapped around her stiff legs, stretching as she did so. "It was at least a few months after…everything happened...so I was in this sorta trance type thing. I don't really know how to explain it. I guess I wasn't really myself? Anyway, I was on a hunt about this vampire that was loose around town. I was investigating around the victim's place, and I come across another 'agent' who, as it turned out, was working the same case. We chatted and decided to work together on it. Get it done quicker, y'know? I never expected to sorta open up to the guy. But like I said, I wasn't really myself so who knows what I really said. I don't remember exactly what I told him but it was something related to what happened.
After the case was over with, he stopped me on the way back to my car, he said 'Hey. Why don't ya come back to my place and away from all this? It's no use stayin' here an' having it torture ya for the rest of ya life. They were good people and I think it's time to move on.' My parents knew Bobby somehow, which was one in a million I guess; they trusted him. I know they would talk about a Bobby but I didn't really make a connection that this was the Bobby they were referring to. So to make it a long story short, I accepted his offer, went back here, grabbed all I could or what I felt like I needed anyway, packed it all in the backseat n' trunk and followed his Chevelle all the way to Sioux Falls, South Dakota."
"Oh wow. It's also a good thing that you're here now and that's what matters," Amber gave her friend a warm smile as she got up from the bale of hay while she brushed herself off from the stems that stuck to her red dress. 'Why don't we head back in? Sure Castiel is wondering what's going on out here."
"Yeah. Alright," Alissa got up off of the bale while brushing herself off from the chaff collected on her butt and the back of her legs as well. They walked out of the large barn up to the house while Alissa took a little time to look around the place since she missed it the first time. She looks over to her left to the remains of the old wooden barn that was once standing there but had to be torn down because of the roof's collapse. "It was a shame it had to go but what could you do?" She thought to herself as he gaze moved to the chicken coop standing in front of her with a little walkway between a line of large assortment of pine and ash trees just to the other side of it. Amber was just a couple steps in front of her as they walked through the yard. She could remember the times where she would play hide and seek in them with her cousins came to visit and would always get poked or scratched by the branches. A smile crept on her face at the thought.
Looking ahead her gaze fell onto the large crab apple tree that was in front of the kitchen window. "I always loved how it looked in the spring time. The petals looked like cherry blossom petals but the crab apples tasted nasty," her gaze then moved to the giant tree that covered just about everything around the house, including the garage, the cement pad in front of it, the chicken coop filled with gardening tools, and the long line of trees for hide and seek. Tied to one of large branches was an old tire swing. The rope still holding on after all these years of playing on it and even in the most treacherous of Michigan winter weather.
There were so many things about this place that she dearly missed, and all of it was ruined by demons just for the hell of it. Now all that remained from this place was a bitter taste in her mouth. She was also glad that she took up on Bobby's offer because if she didn't, who knows where she might be or maybe even worse. Pushing that last thought out of her mind she caught up to Amber who was now at the door, impatiently, waiting for her. "You coming in or what?" She heard Amber call.
"Yeah, I'm coming. Just hang on," she yelled back as she jogged up the mini hill past the tire swing to the cement pad and inside the house once again. Going back in again was sort of a giant step for Alissa and she handled it very well by blocking out those memories and thinking to herself "That was then. This is now. You're here now," walking up the mudroom steps into the main part of the house, she finally got another good look at everything.
Right from the doorway and along the left wall was all window-like cupboards that had crème colored cloth and red apples pasted over the fabric, large cabinets and a dark green counter top with brown trim that led straight to a white door to the cement porch outside. A black refrigerator to the right and a wraparound counter space shaped like a blocky crescent with a black gas powered stove sitting in the middle. On the right side was another doorway which was the bathroom. It looked just like a hallway. It has pale colors on the walls and a dark blue color for the carpeted floor. At the opposite end was once the large computer room. Past the bathroom was the stairs that Alissa flew down and out the door just a few hours ago in a panic. On the other side of the wrap around was a small room that was considered a pantry room with its dark hues of green and brown. Following to the right, a light colored, like sand, baker's rack.
A large doorway that seemed to have once held up a pair of French doors led into the medium sized dining room and a large oak table sat dead center running vertical, taking up the space provided. A door on one end leading into the said computer room and on the other, another archway revealing a large living room filled with light colors of a love seat, a three seat couch, a large EZ chair in the corner by the dining room table and a fifty inch plasma TV on the opposite wall sitting dead center on a wooden desk. All of the walls had pale colors of white and gray while the floors were either some sort of hard wood (such as the living and dining room), carpeted (the bathroom, around the wrap around, the stairs and the pantry), or linoleum (by the door running out into the mud room and in the main part of the kitchen).
When they walked into the main part of the room, Castiel was leaning over the table, his arms holding him up as he studied the papers in front of him while a long silver blade lay to his left hand. He looked up with an emotionless face to look between the two before he went back glossing over the papers in front of him again. "You two were out there a while," He stated.
"Yeah," Amber answered him casually, "It's all taken care of. So you don't have to worry about it," something about the way she said those words as if there was a hidden meaning, didn't go unnoticed by Alissa but she decided to keep that to herself.
Alissa's gaze landed on the blade next to Castiel she narrowed her eyes at the sight only to be widened a second later as she started to pat her lower back and around her boots. "Hey. Where's my blade?" She asked a little curiously.
Castiel glanced up at her moved to the blade and back up to her as he picked it up in his hand carefully, as if he was afraid to drop it somehow. How can a silver blade like that be fragile? Alissa didn't understand but went with it anyways. "It's right here."
Alissa briskly walked up to Castiel only to have him put it behind his back. "Dude, c'mon. I need that." She told him, starting to become annoyed.
"Why do you have an Angel blade?" He asked her with slight accusation in his tone.
"I found it in the woods when I was up north when I was thirteen. I didn't know what it was. I thought it looked cool," She answered him back.
"Which angel did you end up killing?" He asked her with anger rising in his voice.
"I never even met an angel until yesterday! Like I said, I found the damn thing in the woods, shining from the sun on it. I looked around to see if anyone was nearby because maybe they dropped it and were coming back for it. I pick it up and I feel this hum of energy from it. Look around once more and head back out of the woods," Alissa responded back, irritated.
"Energy? What kind? Can you describe it?" He pressed further, losing the anger in his tone.
"I don't know! Like a warm buzz or whatever. Now can I have my damn blade back or not?" She asked in anger while holding out her hand in a 'gimme' type motion which Castiel stubbornly gave back to her. "Thank you," she says in return sticking it back into where it belongs between the pant leg and the inner boot. "And if you guys will excuse me, I'll be upstairs because I would like to go through all of my stuff again," Alissa turned on her heels, walked to the stairs and headed up to her room once again.
Castiel turned to Amber giving her a look to which she threw a glare right back at him before she stuck a hand on her hip. She spoke quietly even though her friend was out of hearing range, she could never be too sure. "No. I didn't tell her anything."
"Good," was his only response he gave her while he went back to look over those papers once again.
"Still don't see why you want me not to tell her," she stated.
"Because, we can't afford to screw up," giving a short sigh he silently added, "Especially not here in this moment in time," in his mind.
"I can't keep this from her forever. She's going to find out eventually," Amber argued back at him.
"You're going to have to. Do whatever you must to keep this a secret," he told her with a commanding tone.
"Yeah. If and when she finds out, I'll be sure to tell her that this was your idea. Then she won't trust either of us. I've been waiting for that day to come for a long time. I'm ready for it. Are you? What're you gonna do? How're you gonna get her to trust you again after that bombshell drops?" Amber shot back at him with now both hands on her hips.
"I'll figure something out when that time comes," he responded back before he sat down in the chair next to him and started writing things down like he was making notes for something.
"You better hope so. I'm not defending your ass when it does come around," Amber's words was the last thing spoken before she turned around to walk into the living room, she plopped into one of the loveseat chairs with a journal and pencil she grabbed off of the table passing by and starting writing down things of her own.
Piles upon piles of papers and scattering of all sorts of boxes surrounded me as I sat with my back to my bed and my legs crossed underneath me. "This is really starting to look like Bobby's house…" I said aloud after I plopped down another pile of papers from the box to my right. "Might as well start sorting through…" Music from a local radio station filled the quiet space of the room while I thumbed through everything.
Pulling a box next to me, I start rummaging through it and stuck to the very bottom were a couple pictures that I never realized I chucked in here. "Hey...I remember this," I say aloud. With the soft music drifting through the air, it kinda creates that nostalgic feel. I pull out the pictures to get a closer look. This was taken way back in middle school. The images showed a group of my friends sitting at a folding lunch table just chatting and laughing. I spotting me with my bangs covering my forehead, my small Harry Potter looking glasses smiling like a goof at the camera sitting towards the right at the end of the table. Alyse was sitting towards the middle where it folds, she had her long dark born hair that reached just about to her middle back. Hair parted to the side and suede thigh high boots. As I looked closer, I could spot some other people from our group who were just barely in the photo. I found Dimetri who sat to the left of me wearing a black T-shirt, who was talking to the light brown haired, glasses and 'Nintendo' shirted Cody-about some video game that I never played let alone heard of-next to him was Erin with her mushroom looking haircut and bright blue turtleneck. "I really haven't heard from those three in a long time. I wonder what they're up to," a though passes through my mind.
"Huh," a smile starts forming. "Cody would've loved the whole hunting thing. He was always talking about creatures from different worlds and the lore on them and everything. I didn't really think nothing of it until now," I kinda liked listening to him telling stories about different creatures and legends from other places like Russia or France. I also thought that a lot of it was just bullshit and just pretended to be into the conversation. That was before I got into hunting. Now I know better.
My gaze then moves to young Amber sitting at the very end of the table. She looked a little out of place in the whole scene but I could tell that she was listening to the conversations being passed around. She had bright blonde hair that reached to her lower back, small glasses and a diet Coke in front of her. Times sure have changed since then. Not just for me but for everyone I think. I've known Dimetri and Cody since fourth grade, Alyse since sixth, Amber since about seventh, Erin I would say eighth grade. So basically I've known everyone for about twelve to fifteen years. Damn, times flies. And out of our entire friends group, there were only a couple that really stuck around while the rest just simply faded away.
There were a couple other people who look familiar but I couldn't place their names. It's been too long. I then place those pictures on the bed behind me and continue to sift through all of these belongings and throw away what I really didn't need anymore. It's going to down memory lane for me and this stuff hasn't been touched in like six years so I think it's time for some clean house, don't you think? I had a quarter left of stuff to sort though and was just about to start working on it before a soft knock accompanied by a deep, gravelly 'Hey' broke me of my concentration. I look up to see a Castiel standing at my bedroom door with a small curious look on his face. "Hello Castiel," I reply back a bit surprised. I'm still wary of him but I'm trying not to show it. Something about him seems 'off' to me. I don't know what it is.
"May I come in?" He asks as he looks around for a quick second then returning his eyes to me.
"Uh, sure. Yeah c'mon in," responding back with a quick hand motion signaling to walk in. "Excuse the mess. Still cleaning in here."
"That's quite alright," he replies with a small smile, looking around the main part of the room as he walks around before carefully sitting down in front of me, mirroring my position. He then starts looking through the papers that were set out in different piles. I look him up and down before I go back to cleaning up what's left of the assortment. I don't care if he goes through it. It's just old drawings and doodles that I don't want anymore. "Who drew this?"
I hear him ask but it sounded more to himself than to me but I looked up anyways and I see he was looking at a somewhat realistic drawing of how I would look like with wings; shading and everything. I was bored, alright? "I did," I answer confidently. "I got bored one day and all of a sudden I got this idea for a drawing, so I just went with it and that was the outcome."
He glanced between the picture and me then to fully study the drawing. "It looks really well done," he replied.
"Well, thank you," I said back, feeling flattered by the compliment.
"You're welcome," he pauses for a moment. "If you would like, I could help you clean this up faster..?" He asks.
"Hmm," I thought for a second. "Sure. If you want to. Just throw out any old school stuff. I have stuff separated in a 'Keep' and a 'Do Not Keep' pile soo, if you're not sure about something then just ask me, okay?" He just nodded his head in agreement as he went to work.
It was moment of silence between him and me but the music seemed to fill that emptiness before I decided to speak again. "I didn't get the chance to thank you for saving me yesterday."
Castiel stopped what he was doing and looked up at me. For a split second it looked like he didn't know what I was talking about but then he finally got it. "You're welcome. You were in pain and I didn't want to just leave you there. I had to get you someplace safe."
Now it was my turn to be curious. "Why didn't you take me to a hospital? They could've done something with my injuries. And how did you know where my old home was? How'd you even get in if the key was hidden?" I know that it was bombardment of questions but I needed to know.
"Because of your abilities," I could've sworn that's what he said but he said it rather quiet and the music was playing in the background still, so I didn't quite understand. "I went by a gut feeling when I was driving around. I had to look for the key. I put it back in the right spot in case you are worried," he gave me a small smile then picked up the drawing I did. "Do you mind if I keep this?" He asked, quickly changing the subject.
That kinda surprised me. Why did he want that for? "Sure, I guess. Not sure why you want to keep it for. But whatever then," he folds it carefully, sticks it into an inside pocket and carries on sorting the through the piles again. By the time everything was all sorted through, it was roughly an hour or so later. Altogether, this took about three hours. I had so much to sort through. You would think I would have sorted through this a long time ago but I just crammed it someplace and then I forgot about it. Oh well. It's taken care of now. Better late than never, right? "Finally got that done," I say to myself.
"Yes. It would seem so," He answered nonchalantly. He got up from where he was sitting, which was now in the green club chair, and stretched out his body, relieving any stiffness from sitting in one place for so long. "I believe that Amber may have a case that she wants you to go with her on."
"Oh really? Sounds interesting," I get up from the bed, move all of the saved papers back in the drawers and boxes they all came out of, headed towards the door, quickly turned back around, "Just hang on, I'll be right back. Gotta use the bathroom,", and walked out the door. I do my business, walk out and come to find Castiel still in my bedroom but he's looking through all of my old sketchbooks that were on top of the built-in desk. I'm guessing he loves my artwork? I don't know. I head towards the stairs but look back at my room. "Yo," I grabbed his attention as he closed the book and sets it back where it belongs. "I'm going back downstairs."
He nods his heads in response. "I'll shall be there shortly."
"Okay cool," was all I said before I headed down those floral print, carpeted stairs.
"Ey, Castiel said you might have a case for us to work on?" Alissa called as she made it down and into the dining room.
Amber looked up from where she sat in the living room, and answered "Yeah. It's looking like Werewolves. Heart missing and everything," Amber put down the journal she was writing in, got up out of the loveseat chair and walked up to the dining room table. "There's an article about it on the table if you wanna read it over."
Alissa walked over and started scanning through, she read it quietly to herself. But the majority of the article stated that two bodies were found at the "Amaze-place" playground down by the baseball fields just off of the interstate by a local resident, James McAvery, 17 years old. He stated that he was going out the fields to get some practice on his swings and once he got there, he saw the two bodies lying there, throat slashed, eyes wide open. Police are stating it was animal attack due to both of the victims hearts are missing, but shall have the official causes of death within the week. "Yeah, I'd say that sounds about right," she turns towards her friend. "We doin' this then or what?"
"Hell yeah we are," she headed towards the bathroom taking the computer room shortcut. "Just lemme check something, grab my badge and I'll be all set."
"And while you do that, I'll go get changed," Alissa responded back to her as she went back up the stairs.
She came back down the stairs a few minutes later with a navy pant suit and a sky blue blouse. Amber was waiting at the bottom of the stairs leaning against the counter by the sink. "All set?"
"Yep, let's roll," they walked out of the house and into the garage to Amber's red, 1965 Dodge Charger. They both go in, engine fired up, backing out of the garage, and turning out of the driveway and down the road they went.
"Speaking of Castiel..." Amber trailed off as she did a little shimmy with her shoulders, a smirk on her face.
"Oh, don't even start. No," Alissa replied a smile that's trying to desperately hide away. "He just came upstairs to help sort through all of my shit, that's all."
"Uh-huh. That's all it was," was Amber's sarcastic response.
"What happened to talking about my crush on Sam?" Alissa asked and as soon as the words left her mouth, she knew she screwed up. She was done for. "God dammit…" She swore in her head at what she just admitted.
"Ha!" Amber exclaimed in victory. "I knew it! I knew you had a crush on him," she told her best friend as she did a little dance in her seat while she continued to drive. "I so totally knew it."
"Are you done?" Alissa asked, crossing her arms over her chest from the embarrassment from her confession and she knew that Amber wasn't going to let it go for a while, if ever.
"Nope," she replied, a grin on her face. "I just had this feeling that you did like Sam and it turns out that I was right," she said looked out to the road and glanced to her friend again. "Now I'm done." A small silence popped up between them until Amber spoke again. "But Castiel, hmm."
"Oh my god, Amber!" Can you not?" Alissa asked cutting her friend off, trying to hide her smile. "I thought we were on a case not going into details of my love life?"
Amber pulled her Charger up to the curved walkway, putting it into park. She turned the radio station down as she sat back in her seat. "Touché," She replied, sitting back in her seat. "Okay, so you wanna head to the Medical Examiner or should I?" Amber asks her friend whose fiddling around with her badge to make sure that everything's intact.
"You can. You're more familiar with terminology and everything. I can go handle the poor kid," Alissa replied as she stuck her badge in its holder and got out the vehicle. She turned back around to lean into the passenger side door. "Lemme know when you're done, kay?" Amber hummed in reply. "See you then, Agent Sparky."
"See you then, Agent Cobalt," Was Amber's response before she pulled away. Alissa walked up the McAvery household, took a deep breath, exhaled and knocked on the front door but on the second to last knock the door opened like it was never fully shut tight. That sent red flags in her mind. She pulled her gun out of the back of her slacks and slowly walked into the house. Raising her gun in front of her, she went along through the rooms and stopped dead when she heard a noise that sounded like an animal feeding on something. It didn't sound quite right. Continuing on into the living room she then came across the source of the noise. It was a young man who was huddled over a body. The man stopped what he was doing and looked up at Alissa who now had her gun raised, blood covered his mouth and hands. His eyes, brown as they were, shifted to bright yellow, teeth and claws extended, a low growl poured out of his throat. He bolted through the house and out the backdoor into the woods just outside. Alissa barreled after him but she couldn't catch up and ended up stopping outside of the back door with a pissed off expression. "God Dammit…"
Alissa walked back into the house pulling out her cell phone when it starts ringing. She looked at the caller ID and just her luck, it was Sparky calling. "Y'ello?"
"Just as I thought, it was a werewolf. Hearts're missing, throats slashed; the whole thing. What's new on your end?" Amber stated.
"Well, for starters, I walk up to the door, knock on it, it's already opened. I walk in, pull my gun out, and I come across this kid. He's hunched over a body that was in the living room," she starts as she walks towards the front of the house again. "Turns out, he's a werewolf. Sharp claws, teeth, brown eyes turning yellow, deep growl. Not sure if he's our werewolf or not. We'll just have to see. Anyways, next thing I know, he freaking bolts on me. Tried to catch him but he was long gone. I have a general idea where he went. I see on the body that the poor guy was tore into, only the throat was slashed. Heart was still there. Guy looked dead anyways," she paused for the moment. "Meet you back here?"
"Hoh damn! Yeah. I'll see you then," Amber said back then hung up the phone.
It was about twenty minutes later that Amber pulled back up the curve and stopped. Alissa hopped in the passenger side with a quick sigh. "Alright, let's go hunt us a werewolf," Alissa stated as the Charger took off down the road.
"You said you had an idea on where he might be?" Amber asked.
"I have a feeling that he's hiding out in the woods by a farm. I'm guessing that he didn't get his fill. Closest farm by here would be on Midland. So I'd say," Alissa pointed her finger to her right, "That a way."
Finally finding the farmhouse a couple miles out of town, they pulled up to the old, brick, two story house and shut off the engine. "Let's do this carefully so no one gets hurt," Amber ushered.
"Okay but since when do we ever not get hurt on a hunt?" Alissa retorted as she was checking her gun making sure that there was enough ammo inside the magazine.
"You make a good point. Don't try to get hurt," Amber stated with a sigh as she stuck her gun in the back of her skirt at the small of her back, shuffling the blazer over it to keep it hidden.
"I'll see what I can do. I make no promises," Alissa replied, getting out of the vehicle to tuck her gun in the back of her slacks on her right hand side. "Y'know, I always loved werewolves as a kid. Always loved the stories and lore around them. Once I started hunting them," she made a motion with her arm that showed her slicing through air horizontally. "Nope. Not anymore."
"Yeah. I know what you mean. Werewolves are nasty creatures," Amber stated back.
They both walk up the wrap around porch of the old house, amber knocks on the door while Alissa glanced around the area. The front door opened to reveal an older man, who appeared to be in his late seventies, with graying brown hair, light gray T-shirt, blue overalls, work boots, and glasses. "Hello, how may I help you?" The man asks them. He seemed to be the type with a big heart.
"We're sorry sir. We don't mean to bother you," Alissa stated curtly. "We've been looking a young boy who has been missing for past few hours and my partner and I have received a tip that he was last seen around this property. Would it be alright with you if we can take a look around?"
"Let me see some ID first, if you don't mind." The old man stated.
"Of course," Alissa replied.
Amber and Alissa pulled out their FBI badges and showed them to the old man and he nodded his head in agreement "Sure. Just be careful of the horse. He can be a little rude."
"Thank you Mr.…?" Amber trailed off.
"Dunley. If you come across anything be sure to let me know. It would be nice if that poor kid was returned to his family," Mr. Dunley said.
"Will do," Alissa told him. Mr. Dunley hummed and closed the door, leaving the two to start investigating the property. She turned to her partner in crime. "You wanna do the outskirts and I'll do the barn?"
"Sure. Why not?" Amber replied, "You're better at deal with horses than what I am."
"Not really," Alissa shrugged.
And on that note they split up and headed off. Alissa opened up the large barn door slowly to not spook the animals that may have been inside at the time. She pulls out the gun she had at her waist, keeping it at the ready. Walking in she moved fluidly down the walkway along the stalls, a horse snorted from a couple stalls down, a goat bleating from outside of the barn in the pens, and a rustling in the hay mounds towards the back that caught Alissa on high alert. As she got closer and closer her nerves started to jump up higher. When she was finally upon one of the mounds, something jumped out in front of her causing her to jump in fright but it was only tiger striped cat that only meowed. "Guess the cat's on mouse duty then," Alissa mumbled to herself.
Right after those words were uttered a mass barreled past, causing her to lose her balance, almost falling to the floor, her finger pressed the trigger out of the reaction and ended up hitting the mass due to a yelp echoing in the small space. Once she regained her footing, she happened to look up to see a young man running out of the barn holding his shoulder.
Alissa ran after him as fast as she could until she heard a voice yell after her. "Cobalt!"
Amber was running up to her with a worried expression on her face. "I heard a gunshot. What happened?"
Alissa slowed down a little so she could talk properly. "I think I found the werewolf, I accidentally shot him in the shoulder because he jumped me. He took off towards the woods in the back of the house. You head to the front of the house, let Mr. Dunley know what's going on and go from there. I'll be at the back."
"Kay. On it," Amber confirmed as she jogged to the house to a concerned Mr. Dunley who was now out of the house and on the front porch. Alissa sprinted to the back of the house and when she saw the young man she tackled him to the ground. He growled, clawed, everything he could to get her off of him but it was useless. She had him pinned with his arms behind his back and his face pushed into the ground.
Both Mr. Dunley and Amber come jogging up and right when Mr. Dunley gets there, the boy looks up with teeth bared, piercing yellow eyes and a growl. Mr. Dunley's eyes were wide as saucers. "James?"
As soon as he saw him, James started to thrash around and try to break free. He thrashed hard enough to knock Alissa off of his back and took off once again. He never expected to be clotheslined by Amber. He landed on his back and a cocked gun pointed at his heart. "Don't. Move," Amber commanded. James took a gulp, obvious fear in his yellow eyes.
Mr. Dunley was a little shocked but he seemed to have calmed down. "Agent Sparky. I believe the use of a firearm in this situation would not be necessary," He walked up to James who was still on the ground in fear. "James, I thought you had control over your powers?"
Alissa cut him off. "Wait, you knew he was werewolf? Are you a hunter?"
"I am-" He started.
"Then why didn't you do anything about this?" She cut him off again, getting a little irritated.
"That was my first instinct but I felt that he could control them." He replied a little let down by James' actions.
All of a sudden James started to shake widely as she curled up into a ball, grunts and whimpers came out of his mouth signaling that he was in pain. He was shifting between forms. He was only able to get out a few words at a time. "I...can't...Too...much...Kill..." Mr. Dunley knelt down in front of James to help steady him but Amber pulled him back just in time before James swung his claws at him. James then fell onto the ground again, shivering. "Help...me..." James said to him.
"It's okay James. We'll help you get through this," Mr. Dunley comforted.
"I don't think there's anything we can do, Mr. Dunley," Amber told him, placing a hand onto his shoulder.
He gave a sigh in response. "I tried to keep him under control but I guess it was all for nothing."
"I know you did but don't beat yourself up over this. It had to be done," Amber reassured him as she walked back over to Alissa.
Out of nowhere James springs off the ground, tackles Mr. Dunley to slash his throat. He didn't get the chance to finish the job because Alissa had grabbed him by the arm to yank him off. He started kicking and clawing but finally got free from elbowing her right in the face. Alissa let go, shielding her face and when he turned around he ended up slashing her across her left arm, taking part of the navy blazer with him. Trying to finish his what he started, James ran back to Mr. Dunley, who was still lying on the ground, until he was shot in the other shoulder making him jump back, and finally shot through the back to his heart by Amber, killing him instantly. "Alissa? You okay?" Amber asked.
"Yeah, I'm alright. Face kinda hurts and jacket's torn but I'll live," Alissa replied.
They both walked over to Mr. Dunley but noticed that his throat was slashed. He was long gone. Saddened by the events that transpired over the past hour, they grabbed their gear out of the back of the Charger and gave Mr. Dunley a Hunter's funeral and buried James' body out in the back by the shed next to the woods. Amber gathered up the shovels while Alissa went back to the Charger to put all of the other materials away. Amber walked into the shed only to be stopped short by an invisible wall. She dropped the shovels as her eyes widened in realization. "Oh, no, no, no, no. No. Not now. Why did it have to be now?" Amber started to panic. A quick idea popped into her head. "Uh, Castiel? I know that this might seem kinda awkward with me praying to you and all. We have a little situation on our hands and she can't find out this way. Please come quickly," the very next second, the sound of flapping wings was heard to her immediate left. A deep and gravelly voice sighed. Amber retorted, annoyance in her tone. "Not my fault I got stuck. I didn't know it was there until it was too late. Seriously though. Just get me out of here before she shows up or this could go bad. Of course, the few things that I'm not immune to is a freaking Devil's trap. Fantastic."
Castiel broke the trap in one quick motion of his foot but once they both turned around, they never expected Alissa to be standing there with wide eyes. Only one word escaped out of her mouth since she was took shocked to say anything else but it sounded more like a statement than an actual question. "What?"
A/N: OH SNAP! What's just happened? So! Alissa is home now. Well isn't that fantastic? Incoming tissues for next chapter too. I promise for happiness soon. We'll get there, I promise. It just takes a while.