sketchydean

smalltrolven

The Wanting Comes In Waves

All Sam/Dean, All The Time


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tabootruths
smalltrolven

Fic: Taboo Truths (Sam/Dean, NC-17, Part 1 of 4)

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@~~#*THEN~@#*~

She ran. Faster than she ever had before, faster than she knew she could.

She ran.

She ran until she could run no more. She had long ago stopped hearing their footsteps pounding behind her. She no longer felt their presence anywhere close to her. But the taste of them was still on her tongue. She spat from her dry mouth as much as she could and collapsed against one of the cedars.

Nestled into the cedar’s roots, she put her arms around her knees and rested her head. Hiding her face in her formerly-white hoodie, she concentrated on slowing down her breathing. Breathe in, breathe out, she commanded herself. The rain had stopped, but the trees still dripped; the random noises of the drops hitting the loamy forest floor were muffled. And so were the slowly approaching footsteps that she finally discerned.  She froze, holding her breath as her pursuer passed by on the other side of the tree.

The footsteps faded into the quiet forest noises, and she no longer could sense anyone or anything that seemed threatening. Quietly she took a deep breath and quickly peeked out of her hoodie.

The early evening twilight had gone full dark during the time she was running. How had she even been able to get here in such darkness? That’s adrenaline and pure panic for you, turning you into superwoman at the first flash of a knife.

Her cell buzzed, she could feel it even buried deep in her backpack. She dug it out, swearing under her breath, hoping they really were gone. “Yeah?”

“Tara, are you okay? I just got this really bad feeling that you were in trouble.”

“Hey, Allie, yeah, now I am,” Tara answered.

“What happened?” Allie asked, sounding even more worried.

“First customers of the night pulled a couple of knives on me, I ran into the woods and hid out. They’re gone now. I hope,” Tara said.

“You need to come home,” Allie said.

“Where’s that again?” Tara asked, trying to sound light and funny, but knowing that Allie understood the darkness behind that particular question.

“You know you’re welcome here. My dad’s not around, so it’d be okay for at least a day. We can leave for Mattie’s ranch, like we planned.”

“No, I don’t want you risking it for me. I’m doing alright, but thanks, Allie,” Tara said. “Hey, I uh…gotta go. We’ll talk tomorrow, ‘kay?”

“Okay, but I’m calling you if I don’t hear from ya. Love you, Tara, g’night.”

“Night, Allie,” Tara said, then punched the button to hang up and stared at her phone for a moment until the brightness of the screen went to black. She fumbled it back into her pack and zipped it in safely. She felt so alone now. Even though Allie was still out there. Still cared. She was the only one. And she was two states away. Too far for Tara to even think about traveling, and there was nothing for her there in Wyoming anyways. Allie was barely hanging on herself, living with her perennially drunk and abusive father. The one thing they had was the dream of moving to Mattie’s ranch, if only they could both get there somehow.

Tara looked up into the night sky through the cedar boughs, putting her wishes and hopes into a prayer that her mother had taught her the year before she’d passed. Cancer, of course, just like her father and grandma. All the people in her town seemed to have some kind of it, like passing the flu around.

“Goddess, confer on us well-being,
confer superb prosperity,
grant form, grant victory, grant fame,
kill enemies. Aum Maatangyai Namahe”

Her words rang out through the still forest night, and as they faded she heard the return of the footsteps, heading right for her. She cowered back into her hoodie, too exhausted to run, too terrified to move, hopeless that it would matter anyway.

Tara felt the knife at her throat before she heard her pursuer speak. “Why’d you run, girl?”

Tara’s eyes tried to adjust in the dim light, but all she could see was a large man holding her up against the tree with the knife pressed against her throat. She felt herself fading, and vaguely thought, so this is what passing out feels like.

The next thing she knew, the sun was glaring bright in her eyes, and she heard the sound of a woodpecker drilling into one of the nearby trees.

She sat up, still against the same tree, nestled in its enormous roots, and looked at the forest floor in front of her. She screamed long and loud and unhinged at the sight of what had once been a human being, now spread out into all its component parts among the ferns and forest duff. The head was in the middle, with the knife stuck in one of the eye sockets.  She struggled to not pass out again. The smell of the blood and guts assailed her nose, overwhelming in its coppery sweetness. She grabbed her backpack up and ran, heading back in the direction she’d come from. She ran faster than she’d ever run before.

@~~#*NOW~@#*~

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“I just don’t think we should drive all the way to Washington on such a slim lead,” Sam says, pulling one leg up under him on the Impala’s front seat, turning towards his brother.

Dean tightens his hands on the steering wheel, not quite clenching them, then he releases the pressure. “Slim? Dude, the body was taken apart - nothing missing, just laid out on the forest floor like a diagram in anatomy book. It’s gotta be our kind of thing.”

Sam, of course, notices his brother’s reaction and control in not over-sharing his reasons for wanting this hunt. It’s all so obvious to Sam, but he’s got to make him work for it a little. “Sounds more serial killer to me.”

“But the autopsy said it was all done at the same moment, no differences between all the pieces. That’s impossible for a person to have done that,” Dean says, gesturing with one hand at Sam, like he can throw the point he’s trying to make without saying anything right at him.

“Fine, seems a little desperate to me. But I get that you want to keep hunting. So let’s go,” Sam said, knowing that giving in to Dean here is what his brother needs most at the moment.

He goes quiet while he thinks about how neither of them really are ready to end the road trip and move back into the bunker. Not when they still haven’t talked about what happened there. Sam can’t even imagine walking down that hallway past the dents in the plaster, the obliterated door, the demon’s taunts still echoing in the rooms. He figures he’s doing pretty damn well not to react too badly whenever Dean calls him ‘Sammy’. It’s like Dean doesn’t even realize what hearing that nickname in the demon’s voice did to him. Who knows if he’s even thought about it?

It takes them a few days to drive across the country from their unexpected hunt in New England. Neither of them say much about the family that was so messed up, everyone had a motive for killing each other. And that it was a shapeshifter after all that. After his one attempt to get Dean to talk about the excess force he used in killing the thing, Sam has been holding back on asking again. Dean at least seems aware of what happened, but feeding the Mark by killing might awaken it. Or possibly, and this is Sam’s worst case scenario of course, it might turn his brother back into a demon.

They find a motel on the outskirts of Bremerton, Washington. It’s not on the ferry side of the city, so they’re staying near the edge of the forest, close to where the victim was found. The rooms are of course decorated in Northwest cliches of tree bark wallpaper, ridiculous pinecone lamps and switch plates. But at least the bathroom has newer fixtures and the water pressure is decent.

Things are still a little strained between them, so Sam is lying on his bed reading the local paper while Dean makes a supply run. He’s noticed his brother’s drinking seems to be ramping up again, and it’s not so easy to hide when they’re in each other’s pockets on the road.  When Dean comes in with a couple of six-packs and a bag of junk food, Sam looks up at him in relief. He’s relieved that it’s only beer at this point, no bottles of whisky wrapped up in paper bags.

“So, there’s been another one,” Sam says as he accepts an opened beer from Dean. “This time not in the forest, but on a downtown street, near where most of the prostitutes are at night. Some of the witnesses say it was one of the regulars, they saw her take the guy apart.  But the police can’t find her.”

Dean sits down on his bed, drinks nearly half of his beer before answering. “Killer-dissecting hooker? That sounds like something out of a bad Roger Corman movie.”

Sam drinks his own beer to hide his laugh. “All of his movies are bad.”

“I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. You just have no taste, Sammy,” Dean says with an exaggerated shake of the head, not able to hide his happiness at being able to banter like this again.

Sam controls his wince of fear at the nickname that still gouges at him, even through the welcome brotherly, normal banter. “So, we goin’ to talk to the witnesses? Fed suits or what?”

“Naw, I’m tired of wearing those things. Let’s go with reporter or true crime authors,” Dean suggests.

“You just want me to wear a sweater vest. Just be honest,” Sam teases, then freezes when he realizes what he’s just insinuated.  Given Dean’s expression, the suggestion was spot-on though. Sam smiles at the small flush on Dean’s cheeks.

Dean meets his eyes with a little defiance, matching his smile. “So what if I do? I’m just not up to wearing a suit, not in this cold weather. Don’t have my dress coat with me. It’s back at the bunker.”

Sam notices that Dean doesn’t call the bunker their home any more. It makes him sad, because it had been good for his brother to have that for a while. For both of them really. But now it doesn’t feel like home, not when all that emotional hurt and very real violence happened there.

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“So the first victim was found in Forest Ridge Park near the Naval base. Second one in Pendergast Regional Park, which is near the Army reserve. Maybe a military connection somehow?” Sam suggests, paging through his notebook, rechecking for any other connections.

“Are the vics military?” Dean asks.

“Yeah, both guys were mid-30’s, recently stationed here, neither one was married, no connections with each other.”

“Guess we gotta start with the witnesses, huh?” Dean asks.

“We’re pretty close to the ‘wrong side of town’ here, got some of the street names the women are known by from this report.”

“Hookers, huh?” Dean asks in a suggestive tone.

“Don’t get too excited about it, buddy, we’re working,” Sam scolds.

Dean doesn’t say anything, just does one of those annoying eyebrow waggles that Sam studiously ignores.

As they interview the small group of prostitutes, Dean notices one woman hanging back. She’s got long, very straight black hair, she’s tiny, and is wearing a white hoodie. He turns to tell Sam he’s going to go talk to her separately, and when he looks back, she’s gone.  He dashes towards the alley and runs flat out as he sees a flash of white disappear around the building at the end. He rounds the corner and runs smack into her, knocking her to the ground.

She looks up at him in fear. “No, no, not again, please, he didn’t do anything,” she yells, body going stiff in what looks like terror. But her eyes blaze greenish blue as she slowly stands and steps back from Dean.

“Dean Winchester, you must pay,” the woman says in a monotone that rings with power.

Sam rounds the corner and comes up behind a small woman with her arms outstretched towards his brother, who he sees is beginning to writhe in pain. Sam raises his gun hand up and brings the butt of the gun down hard against the back of her neck. She crumples to the ground in an untidy heap. Dean shakes himself out of the pain or whatever trance it was.

“What the hell?” Dean says in a stunned voice.

“Who was she, Dean?” Sam asks, leaning down to pick the woman’s head up off the wet cement. He checks her pulse and lifts her eyelids. “She’s out cold.”

“I don’t know, she’s the one I said I noticed hanging back. I went to talk to her and she ran, so I followed her. We collided when I came around this corner. She screamed something like ‘No, not again, please he didn’t do anything’, then she went stiff as a board. When she stood up, her eyes were this weird greenish blue color and all I could feel was pain everywhere.”

“What the hell is she?” Sam asks, staring down at the small woman in his arms. Her face is beautiful, light caramel skin, and her dark hair falls over her shoulders.

“I don’t know, but we gotta move her out of here, before she comes to. Here, help me get her up.”

Between the two of them, they manage to carry her to the Impala without too much trouble; she doesn’t weigh all that much, coming up to maybe chest height on Dean. When they get her into the motel room, they lay her down on the bed and do all the usual tests on her. Holy water, salt, silver, nothing has an effect. Dean insists on tying her hands to the headboard, but Sam protests that the danger seemed to come when she felt threatened, so they compromise on only securing one of her wrists.

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“Where am I?” she finally says when she awakens, surprising both of them.  “Hey! What the fuck! Let me go!”

“Calm down. We’re not going to hurt you. We’ll let you go, just tell us who you are first,” Sam says, sitting at her side on the bed and trying to calm her down.

“Tara. I’m Tara,” she says, dark eyes wide in fear.

“What are you, Tara?” Dean asks, looming over the bed next to Sam, looking down at her with his arms crossed.

She rolls her eyes dramatically. “You mean what do I do? I’m a hooker, dumbass.”

“What did you mean when you said ‘not again, please, he didn’t do anything?’” Sam asks as he unties her wrist, rubbing at the skin gently.

She looks from one stern face to the other, and visibly gives up on pretending everything’s alright. “Uh. There’s been weird stuff happening to me lately. It’s been kinda scary.”

“What kind of weird stuff?” Sam asks.

Tara takes a deep breath, steadying herself to answer. “A week ago, two douchebags pulled knives on me and I ran into the forest to get away from them. I thought I lost them, but one came back for me and I passed out or something. When I woke up, he was just taken apart all over the ground. And two nights ago, pretty much the same thing.”

“Did you ask for help from anyone? Police, friends?” Dean asks.

“No. I don’t have anyone. Not here anyways. All I could do was sit there and pray,” Tara answers, looking down at her hands which she twists in her lap.

“Which prayer?” Sam asks abruptly, knowing that this is probably the clue they need.

Tara looks up at Sam and sees he’s very interested for some reason. “Uh..one my mom taught me. It’s to Matangi for protection and strength. She’s a Hindu goddess.”

“Are you Hindu?” Dean asks, pacing back and forth next to the bed.


Tara’s eyes follow him for a few turns of the room before she answers. “My mom was. I guess I’m nothing though.”

“I think this Matangi might have answered your prayers,Tara,” Sam says, with as much gentleness as he can manage.

Tara rolls her eyes for the second time. “Doubt that, dude, I’m still a hooker.”

“Yeah, but you’ve been protected, twice now.  Guys torn apart at your feet when you’re there, but not there.  Can you write down the prayer for me, so I can do some research?” Sam asks.

Sam hands her a notebook and pen. Tara sits up and writes down the few lines of the prayer. “Here, I doubt it’ll help. I don’t see why anything would be different, I’ve prayed to Her so many times.”

“But you weren’t ever in imminent danger at the time of your prayers before I bet. Sometimes that’s all they need,” Sam says, reading over what’s she’s written in his notebook.

“They?” Tara asks, with a nervous giggle.

Dean stops pacing and looks at her, serious and severe. “Gods, goddesses, deities, whatever. They usually ignore us, until it’s something extreme that gets their attention. And it seems like you’ve got Hers now, like it or not. Whenever you’re threatened, She’s jumping in to protect you. Tonight you told Her I didn’t do anything, but She was still trying to hurt me.”

Tara looks at Dean’s serious face and blanches, face going fish belly pale. “I’m sorry.”

Sam pats her on the shoulder in what he hopes is a comforting gesture. “No, don’t be. It’s not your fault.”

Tara shakes her head, insistent. “But. It is. I prayed to Her, She wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for me.”

“Yeah, but you wouldn’t have prayed to Her if you didn’t need Her, right?’” Dean says.

Tara thinks about it for a long moment, then answers in a quiet voice, “I guess.”

“I mean, those guys were going to hurt you, and she stopped them. A little overkill maybe, but still, you have a right to protect yourself however you can,” Dean says, standing next to where Sam is seated on the bed.

“How do I stop Her from killing people though?” Tara asks.

“We’ll have to figure it out. We’ll help you,” Sam assures her.

Tara looks between their two faces, both a little more friendly now. “Who are you guys?”

“Oh, uh sorry. I’m Sam and this is my brother, Dean. We kind of do this for a living, take care of this kind of stuff.”

“Stuff?” Tara asks.

“Yeah, ghosts, monsters, deities, demons, whatever, we do it all,” Dean says, sounding like he’s bragging.

“You can’t be serious,” Tara says, looking between the two men to see if they’re kidding her.

“Tara, based on what you’ve seen this week, you know there’s more to the world than you knew before. We got brought up in this life, believe us, we can help you,” Dean says.

Her stomach grumbles with blatant hunger pangs, making her forget whatever she was going to answer.

Dean stands up and grabs his keys off the table. “I’m gonna go get us some grub. Burger okay with you, Tara?”

“Yeah, uh, that’d be great,” she answers, pulling her hoodie sleeves down to cover her hands.

Sam crosses over the small room to join Dean at the doorway. “She hasn’t eaten in a while, get some extra stuff, maybe some milk too,” he says, in a low voice she hopefully can’t hear.

“Just like you always are with stray cats and dogs, Sammy, you know you can’t keep this one,” Dean says with a smile as he exits their room.

“Tara, have you been here in Bremerton long?” Sam asks after he’s closed and locked the door behind Dean.

Tara shifts around on the bed until she’s in a more comfortable seated position, back against the headboard. “No, I, uh, was last in Wyoming, that’s where my friend Allie lives. I was trying to get enough money together to go see her. And I ended up here because of the military bases, lots of customers, you know?”

“Ah, yeah, makes sense. So, did your mom bring you up in the Hindu religion at all?” Sam asks, sitting down on the other bed, and folding his legs up underneath himself.

“She tried, but it didn’t take. I was too American, she always said. Her and my dad, they came here so I could have a better life. But they both got cancer, from workin’ the oil fields. So many people in our town died from it. I had to get out of there. I had some money at first that they’d saved up, but it ran out. It’s more expensive to live here, and there weren’t a lot of jobs.”

“Sounds like it’s been a rough time for you. And I’m sorry about your folks. Ours are gone too.”

“You’re really brothers?” Tara asks.

“Yeah, we are, why?” Sam asks in return, dreading the question he knows that’s likely coming next.

“No reason, I just thought you were a couple when I first saw you together, that’s all. One of the skills someone in my line of work needs, gotta weed out the guys who won’t be interested. Thought it might be why I felt safe with you.”

Sam just laughs instead of trying to answer with what would have to be a lie. He doesn’t want to lie to this girl. Or admit to himself what used to be true about him and Dean maybe isn’t any longer. They aren’t much of a couple now, even if they still are brothers. Better to leave it as it is, at least for now.

Tara stares at him while he laughs, and she finally says, “Well, I wouldn’t care if you were a couple.”

I wonder if she’d care if she knew we were a couple at one point, as well as brothers. Sam thinks to himself as he smiles at her, guessing she’d probably be surprised, but who knows what someone’s going to think. That’s one thing he’s learned, he can never predict the unexpected and different reactions people have to finding out about the strange relationship he and his brother used to have.

Chapter Two

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