Summary: Mary and John Winchester turned to hunting after their children were killed ten years ago. When they take a case in Kansas for the first time since the fire, the two stumble across 14 year old Dean and 10 year old Sammy squatting in a boarded up shop and discover their tragic history. Will the boys come to trust them?
Author's Note: Thanks to Carolinagirl117 for beta reading this chapter and having to deal with my terrible writing habits ;)
Ruffling a hand through Sam's messy curls, Dean smiled softly before pulling the blanket over Sam's body and getting to his feet. The alley was empty, but it wouldn't be for much longer. He needed to find somewhere for them to crash before it went dark. Alleys after dark weren't so much of a problem for Dean, who could, after two years of living on the streets, handle his own in a fight against the alleys after dark visitors. Dean needed to find them somewhere to sleep because he didn't want Sam to have to spend another night in the harsh elements. Winter was coming, and the temperature was already beginning to drop. They'd already spent the past three nights out in the streets, and Dean wasn't prepared to make it a forth. They needed somewhere dry, warm...ish, and safe...enough.
"De..." A little voice spoke, sleepily.
"Yeah, Sammy." Dean answered softly as he turned around, unaware Sam knew he was leaving.
"Where'y going?" He asked. Dean felt a smile tug at his lips as he heard Sam's sleepy voice. Sam struggled to sit up, but Dean could see how tired he was.
"I need to find us some shelter." He stated. "Go back to sleep, I'll be back before you wake up."
"Be careful, De..." Sam's childish voice spoke.
Dean smiled at his brother's innocence. "I promise, Sammy."
Walking down the street, Dean reached the grocery store and opened the door. Entering inside, he looked over at the cashier to see him busy talking to a trucker in a baseball cap about the Chief's game. Walking down the snacks aisle, Dean quickly glanced around before removing a jar of peanut butter from the shelf and stuffing it into the pocket of his coat. He then walked round to the next aisle, and took a small loaf of bread. Shoving that into his coat, Dean zipped it up before quickly but unsuspiciously walking out of the store.
Making his way down the street, Dean felt quite proud of himself. He had certainly improved since the first time he tried to steal bread for Sammy when they first started living on the streets and got caught by the store owner in the process. He remembered begging and pleading with the man to not call the cops. Luckily, the owner let him off with a warning, allowing him the candy bar before threatening that he would call the cops if he ever caught him in his store again.
Returning to the alley, he found Sam where he had left him, curled in a ball behind the trash can. "Hey, Sammy."
"De..." Sam flickered his sleepy eyes open and smiled.
"Come on, let's get outta' here before the rain hits." Dean stated, after noticing the prominent grey clouds that screamed imminent torrential downpour.
Sam nodded as he got to his feet. Dean picked up the duffel before also taking the blanket that Sam had picked up.
"Where are we going, De?" Sam asked as they walked out of the alley and down the street. People hurried about the street, casting curious glances at the two boys but ultimately left them alone. Dean assumed it was because of his scowl.
"There's a boarded up shot on the main street, I figured no one would care if we stayed there for a bit."
Reaching the boarded shop, Dean picked the the lock on the door before walking inside with Sammy in tow. He closed the door behind them before finding a light switch.
"I thought we weren't allowed to put lights on." Sam stated.
"The windows are all boarded up, no one will see." Dean smiled. Sam smiled too as he nodded.
Dean proceeded the flip the switch causing the shop to be illuminated by a warm, yellow glow of light. The building itself had been stripped out leaving nothing but the floorboards, which were smashed and splintered in some places, and the light fittings. The room had three hanging from the ceiling by thick white cabling.
"Oh, I almost forgot." Dean remembered as he pulled the loaf of bread and jar of peanut butter out from his coat. "I got your favourite."
Sam smile grew as he saw the food. He then rushed over and bundled Dean into a hug.
"Hey, what's this for?" Dean asked with a small smile. It wasn't that Sam didn't hug him, but those hugs were becoming fewer and farther between as the kid grew up. He never took a single one for granted anymore.
"For what?" Dean furrowed his eyebrows, wondering what his little brother was thanking him for.
"For taking care of me." Sam stated. "I know I can be annoying sometimes..." He began.
"Hey..." Dean interrupted him softly. "You are my little brother, there is nothing I wouldn't do for you." He smiled before opening the peanut butter and bread. Taking out two slices, he closed the bag to save the rest for another day before spreading the peanut butter with a chipped plastic knife from the duffel and giving the sandwich to Sammy. Content that his brother wasn't going to go hungry, Dean handed Sam back the red blanket which had seen better days. He knew that the things rightful place was in some garbage can, but Sam loved it. Ever since he'd been given it at the group home, Sam had grown attached to the red piece of fabric. Despite the bobbles that covered it and the unpleasant odour it carried, Sam treasured his blanket, the faults obscured by his love for the smelly thing. "You need to get some more sleep." Dean insisted.
Neither of them had got any sleep the night before because of having to run from the cop they had seen walking near the alley. This had forced them to search for somewhere else, the next day having came before their search was successful.
Sam nodded and lay down on the floor. Dean tucked the blanket around him. "Goodnight, Sammy." He paused. "This won't be for much longer." He carded a hand through his brother's light brown curls.
"Goodnight, De." Sam's eyes closed as he soon fell asleep.
"So what are we dealing with?" Mary Winchester asked as she looked over at her husband in the driver's seat of their 67' Impala.
"From what I've heard, it sounds like a poltergeist."
"Awesome. Where?" Mary nodded with clear enthusiasm for the case. This was short lived however as she noticed the solemn expression on her husband's face. "John?"
"Kansas." John answered in a resigned tone. Mary took a deep, calming breath before nodding. John could sense her worry start to fill the car.
Mary took a deep breath before nodding.
"Hey." John reached over and put his hand comfortingly over Mary's. "We don't have to do this one. There's plenty of other hunters who could handle it."
"No." Mary shook her head determinedly. "We can't just keep handing over cases every time they're in Kansas. We've gotta' face it sometime."
"Are you sure you're ready for this?" John asked softly John asked softly, Mary noticed the careful way he was watching her and she tried to control her painful memories..
"It's been ten years, you'd think it wouldn't still hurt this much."
Pulling up in the town, John cut off the engine and exhaled. He then looked over at Mary with a gentle smile, his lips curving up and wrinkling the area around his eyes. Mary noticed he only ever had that smile when he looked at her. "Ready?"
John shut the car door and locked it while waiting for Mary to get out. Together they walked down the empty street towards the given address. Apparently the poltergeist had been haunting various shops on the main street, most recently the grocery store. The owner had been complaining about how his lights seemed to be on the way out and cold spots. The grocery store would be their first stop.
Walking into the store, it was nothing more than a simple town grocery store. Small in size, there seemed to be two many shelves and fridges for the limited amount of floor space the building had. Mary made her way down one of the aisles while John took another. Taking out his home-made EMF, he was disappointed to find that it wasn't picking up anything out of the ordinary. Looking up, he noticed a kid at the end of the aisle sneaking a small Hershey bar into his coat pocket.
"Hey!" He shouted, startling the kid and people close by. All eyes jerked to where his were looking and stared at the boy.
The young thief's jaw dropped and turned on his heel in an instant. John was already closing the gap between them as he glance around looking for an escape. John grabbed his wrist before the boy even realized John had gotten close. The owner rushed over, a look of uncertainty covering his face as he looked back and forth between them. John knew the situation must look odd but hastily explained himself.
"Caught him slippin' a candy bar." John stated.
The boy's expression changed to that of anger. "Get off me!"
"I'm calling the cops." The owner stated. "Unless you pay for this, and extra for trying to take it in the first place."
The boy, silent now, shook his head. "I can't." He said quietly. By now, Mary had walked over to see what the fuss was all about. Her eyebrows were knitted together in curiosity as she listened to the stern owner.
"Do you want me to call the cops?" The owner stated, his stance aggressive as he folded his arms. He looked exasperated by the boy's attempts. "Just pay up."
"I. Can't!" The kid growled trying to loosen my grip on his wrist.
"Fine." The owner began to walk over to the counter, the gawking crowd parting before him. "I'm calling them."
"No please!" The boy began to beg. "Please, don't do this!"
The owner scoffed. "You're kidding, right?"
Mary walked forward. "We'll pay."
John turned to her. "What?"
The kid looked equally confused. Mary took out her purse before offering the cashier a five. "This enough?"
Pulling out a twenty, the cashier seemed much more interested.
"That'll do." He took the twenty. "Now get outta' here you piece of trash, and don't you dare come into my store again."
The kid rushed off.
Mary watched the boy, and then followed at a slower pace. John was still staring at her wide-eyed for give the jerk of an owner fifty dollars. He caught up to her as he realized she was going to leave him and fell in step behind.
"What was that?" John asked, angrily.
"He's just a kid John. What was I supposed to do?" Mary threw over her shoulder, in an equally angry voice.
"Whatever. We need to find him 'cause I need to have a word. He's not just gonna' cheat us out a of a twenty."
"Just leave it John."
"What is it with you and this kid?" John asked with a raised eyebrow, before he realized the connection. "It's because you see Dean in him, don't you?"
Mary was silent. That was all the conformation he needed.
"It's not Dean, Mary. This kid needs to learn that he can't do something like this and get away with it."
Having stopped following the two kids' trail, John was perplexed as he watched them entered the boarded shop. "What the hell?" John hurridley crossed the street leaving Mary behind him. He went over the shop and yanked open the door. The kid jumped to his feet in seconds, standing protectively in front of a bundle on the floor. "What are you doing here?" He demanded. He didn't let him answer before he continued.
"Did you really think you could just take our hard earned cash! We worked for that."
"I'm sorry." The kid apologised in a less than sincere tone before throwing a punch.
John blocked it in an instant, along with the next three the kid threw before being hit across the face by the fourth. "You little shit!" He growled as he too landed a punch on the kid, his packing much more power. The kid fell to the ground, his split lip bleeding. In anger, John raised his fist.
"No!" A voice shouted as he saw a little kid run over and stand between the older kid and him.
"Sammy...no!" The eldest shouted, his tone slightly weak from having the air knocked out of him when he hit the floor.
Mary's heart sank painfully as she heard the youngest's name. Why did it have to be that. "John!" Mary grabbed hold of her husband's arm and pulled him away from the two boys. "Stop it!"
The youngest boy was now knelt beside the eldest.
"I'm fine, Sammy." She heard him reassure the younger child.
Mary looked around at the place. Everything was painfully bare and unloved, which was also a fitting description for the two children stood only a few feet away from her. "Honey, where are your parents?"
The kid's face scrunched as he heard the woman refer to him as honey but remained silent.
John looked around at the building, and noticed the lack of anything, not just parents. "What's going on here?" He asked sternly.
"De..." The youngest's tone was full of fear.
The eldest struggled to his feet and wiped away the blood from his lip. Dean then pulled Sam to is side and wrapped an arm around him to comfort him. "It's okay, Sammy."
John then noticed what he had missed. The kid was skinny, too skinny, malnourished skinny, with pale skin covered in dirt and clothes that were equally dirty and almost threadbare. The youngest however was in better clothes that appeared newer, and although he was underweight too, he wasn't in the same ball park as the eldest. John also noticed that he obviously wasn't the only one that had lashed out at the kid at some. The kid's face looked tender with bruises on his cheek, chin and around his eye. His knuckles were also grazed.
"Where are your parents?" Mary repeated, this time in a softer tone.
"Long story." The oldest kid stated, dismissively.
"Good, well we've got all night." John stood his ground.
"What?" The boy scoffed. "D'you think I'm gonna' tell you everything just 'cause you asked nicely?" He paused. "I don't know you, and I certainly don't trust you so no, it's not storytime."
"Honey." Mary spoke up. "We can't help you if you don't let us."
"Why do you wanna' help us?" The kid's showed slight traces of panic.
"Because you're just kids." She stated softly before sighing. "Look, we want to help."
Dean scoffed once again. "We don't need your help."
The stubbornness of the older kid left John in disbelief. He shook his head. "Are you sure about that?"
"De..." Came the youngest's small voice.
As the tall one turned to him, his expression softened before he sighed. "Fine."
"Our car's parked just down the street." John explained. "I'll go and get it." He walked out of the shop.
Mary stayed and watched silently as the two boys interacted with each other. The eldest was obviously extremely protective, which led Mary to believe that they were in fact brothers, rather than just two street children that had met. The eldest was still standing between her and the youngest.
"We're not going to hurt you, sweetie." She spoke up in an attempt to offer some reassurance.
"Yeah, that's what they all say." The older kid muttered. Those words sent a shiver down Mary's spine. What did he mean by that? Had someone hurt them previously. She knew from observation that something must have happened previously for them to be out on the streets but the thought of them being previously abused had never even crossed her mind.
The horn honked from outside, pulling her from her thoughts. The two boys gathered their meager amount of items before looking to her awaiting instructions. Mary motioned to the door with a wave of her hand. The boy called Sammy, stayed clutched securely to his older brother as he was led out of the house.
Mary switched the light off, before following them to the car and climbed into the passenger seat. The two boys clambered into the back. John began to drive to the motel that he had spotted earlier.
After a few minutes of silence, the taller of the two finally spoke up. "Where are you taking us?"
Mary caught a glimpse of the eldest's reaction in the mirror, watching as his eyes widened in fear slightly. He also noticed him pull the door handle gently to check if they had locked it. Mary's heart wrenched, what had these two boys been through?
"Why a motel?" The older boy asked. "'Cause I know I'm a little short on cash right now, but I'm not that desperate."
John's eyes widened. "Woah!" He exclaimed. "God no!" He looked back at the boy. "We need somewhere to sleep for the night, and so do you. That's all."
The boy visibly relaxed, although it was obvious that he hadn't fully left his guard down. The two seemed to have gained a small amount of respect for their help, but Mary knew it would take longer for them to be trusted.