Author's Notes: Thanks to everyone who emailed me feedback for the first chapter. It was much appreciated and I look forward to hearing from you guys again. :)
On another note, I just wanted to make an announcement. I've decided that in addition to Nifty, I will post my work both on my new Blog and the Archive Of Our Own (AO3). For a couple reasons.
Firstly, the stories will be out as soon as I post them with no waiting period. I understand the Nifty archivist must be a busy guy and there is inevitably a wait period while the stories are checked before posting. On my blog and AO3 the chapters will be out at least a couple days sooner than Nifty.
Secondly, it will allow readers to not only comment but see what others think about the story so far. As well as allow me to make announcements, send readers notifications as to when a new chapter's out and post of fanfic related material like art :P and character tidbits and bios. I'd prefer comments on my blog but whichever you prefer. AO3 allows you to download the entire story as PDF of in various eBook formats or a single HTML if you'd like. So here are the links.
My Blog: My Blog - The Fanfic Addict
AO3: My Archive Of Our Own Page
As always you can send me an email by clicking HERE!
When She Comes...
"Will you please stop that?" Castiel asked without taking his eyes off the roadway. "It's incredibly distracting."
Jesse was trying his best to levitate the air conditioning unit's remote control across the room. Try as he might every time he succeeded in getting it airborne...it fell with a clatter back onto the nightstand. Ever since he'd cast the divine light spell from the Sefer it had been like that. Next to no power. It had been so draining that when the vampire behind him grabbed hold he could do nothing to break free.
"Sorry," Jesse mumbled, finally giving it up. "You'd think Raziel would put a big warning on the page and not scribble it in a corner in fine print."
Castiel withdrew from the window and took a seat on the plush armchair. "You'll be fine in a few hours. The spells from the Sefer are incredibly potent. But many are spiritually taxing and were meant to be cast by a group. I'm surprised you had it in you. Especially given your age."
In a corner Bobby, Missouri, Sam and Dean were engaged in a discussion about possible allies. They were currently arguing back and forth over the merits of calling Jo and Ellen Harvelle. As animated as the argument was (thanks in most part to Dean's gesticulations) it was monotonous, and so Jesse withdrew his attention from it.
"I've been going through the book and I can't find anything about demons possessing a vampire," Jesse said to Castiel, by way of conversation. "Though there are a few references about the possibility of animal possession. Animal bodies can't sustain a demon for long. It's extremely short lasting but we might wanna do something about the dogs. Inscribe anti-possession sigils on their medals maybe."
"I think it would be wise." Cass, who had been fiddling with a frayed bit of his coat (and wishing he still had the power to magically repair it) looked up. "It would appear the demons have gotten innovative. No doubt Lucifer has been teaching them a few things. It allowed them to circumvent Bobby's wards. Something that should not have been possible. But then those wards were designed to repel demons lurking within human hosts."
"Just great," Jesse grumbled. "Now we might not be able to rely on the good old classics."
"Before this is over," Castiel went on, "I expect we shall bear witness to magic and wonders that have not been seen for millennia."
Jesse scoffed. "Yes and hopefully we'll live to tell our grandkids about it someday." Jesse turned to the others. The argument seemed to be winding down. "So what's the good word?"
"I think it's a bad idea," Dean said flatly. "They'd only be a liability."
Bobby rubbed his chin thoughtfully. "Well, a couple months ago Jo did take down a werewolf over in Tuscany."
"Bobby, please." Dean rolled his eyes. "Werewolf? Knowing Jo it was probably nothing but a rabid dog."
"Dean, stop it!" Sam said angrily. "You're letting your history with Jo cloud your better judgment."
Bobby had to make the pill more jagged. "Besides, Ellen is as good a shot as either of you two. And didn't she and Jo get the drop on you two one time. Held you up at gunpoint?"
"I...we..." Dean trailed off incoherently as he shook his head, unable to find the words to explain just how bad an idea having Jo and Ellen around would be.
Jesse, a great lover of soap operas and drama in general, gravitated towards the table. "Who is Jo?"
Dean opened his mouth but Sam cut him short.
"She's a hunter," Sam answered, eying Dean and waiting for his rebuttal.
Dean stared his brother down in return and added. "Who almost got us killed."
"Ooh," Jesse said, interest piqued. "It's a she."
"She's just a kid," Dean exasperated.
Bobby wasn't having it. "She's older than Jesse. He probably can't even legally drink yet and you haven't said anything about his age."
Jesse frowned. "Hey!" He reddened a little. "I turn twenty one in two months. I'm practically there."
Missouri put her hand forcefully down on the table. "I say call `em. I got a good feelin' about this. We can't be everywhere at once. We need allies. And after tonight it's safe to assume, so does Lucifer. I vote yes."
"Outvoted, Dean. I'll give `em a call now," Bobby said triumphantly as he reached for his cell phone.
Dean raised his hands in equal parts resignation and frustration. "I'm gonna go get a drink," he announced and grabbed his wallet. "I'll be at the bar across the street."
Castiel rose and followed him to the door. "I could do with a drink myself. Besides, we shouldn't wander off alone."
Since when do angels drink booze? Jesse thought to himself, but said nothing of it. "Hey, can I come with?"
"No," they both said in unison and headed out the door.
Jesse turned to Sam. "Your brother's a real jerk."
"Don't I know it," Sam said with a smirk.
The following morning Jesse awoke to the aromatic scent of high quality coffee. Sure enough, after rubbing his eyes and looking across the room, he saw that Missouri was seated at the table with a steaming cup in her hands. There was another cup standing on the table together with a rather large white box.
"Courtesy of Castiel," Missouri said, answering his unvocalized question. "He doesn't need to sleep and saw to our breakfast first this morning after he walked the dogs. Along with keeping watch all of last night. Useful fella to have around."
Jesse jumped out of bed and stretched. "What did he get?"
"Jelly donuts," Missouri said in a mildly disapproving tone. "I think Dean has corrupted him."
"Can you blame him?" Jesse asked, smirking crudely as he headed into the bathroom. "Dean can corrupt me anytime."
Missouri rolled her eyes as she raised her psychic shields to avoid the suggestive images Jesse was maliciously sending her way. "Boy, when will you grow up?"
"Never! I'm gonna die young and beautiful!" Jesse's voice echoed from the bathroom.
"Careful," Missouri warned, "or you just might get your wish."
While Jesse took care of morning business Missouri had a read of the paper. It read more like a tabloid than a legitimate newspaper what with the mysterious goings on across the country. Like the sudden surge of crop circles in Nebraska (which were really old Enochian sigils). The plague of rats that swarmed the streets of a small town in Maine (eyewitnesses swore they devoured several dogs right down to the bone). "Oh my..." Missouri trailed off as she read one headline. "Ann Coulter Dies Of Aneurysm In The Midst Of Homophobic Rant."
"Why are you smiling?"
It was Jesse, fresh from his morning duties. She flashed him the page and they shared a brief but much needed laugh.
"Alright, comic relief's over," Missouri announced, dropping the paper. "Are you back up to scratch?"
Jesse gestured to his unkempt bed. The sheets promptly straightened themselves into a semblance of order. "Good as new. What's on the schedule for today?"
"Well let's see here..." Missouri trailed off.
The first thing they needed was a change of clothing. So they'd hit the stores as soon as they opened. In addition to regular wear they needed to get attire more appropriate to hunting.
"Maybe there's an army surplus store in town," Jesse offered.
Missouri smiled. "Good idea."
They discussed at length for a few more minutes until their conversation was interrupted by a heavy handed knocking on the door. Jesse grumbled incoherently and put down his half eaten donut and went to see to whoever was knocking so insistently.
"Sam," Jesse said, snapping to alertness upon seeing the dour look on Sam's face. "Is something wrong?"
Sam looked uncomfortable and was shifting around awkwardly in his (a little too loose) jacket. "We...have company."
Jesse's face twisted in surprise. "I thought your friends weren't meeting us here but next town over?"
Sam shook his head. "No it's not Jo and Ellen. It's..." Sam sighed, "it's someone else. Could you meet us in our room?"
"Um, sure," Jesse said, turning to call Missouri.
"What...what is it?" Jesse asked, grabbing hold of Missouri's arm. The psychic had pulled back her hand from the doorknob as if she'd been burnt. "Are you okay?"
Missouri slowly turned to face him and Sam. "I...yes. I just felt something flow through me. Like a psychic version of a small electric shock. I get the feeling that your friend is someone special, Sam."
"Yeah, she's special, alright," Sam said under his breath then opened the door himself and led them inside.
They had barely made it inside before their ears were assaulted by a high pitched SQUEE! and an
"OH MY GOD!"
"What the hell?!" Jesse asked immediately assuming a defensive stance. Sam rested a calming hand on his shoulder.
Dean and Castiel were sitting on one of the beds with annoyed looks on their faces. Bobby was in his chair, arms folded and rolling his eyes. Standing before them was a young blond woman with a huge grin on her face. She slowly approached Missouri.
"Oh my God," she said in a softer (though equally excited voice), "Missouri? Missouri Moseley...is that you?"
Missouri glanced at Sam then turned once more to the awestruck girl. "Yes...have we met?"
"No," the girl said, closely her eyes tightly and pumping her fist in the air as if to say `yes!'. She opened her eyes once more and said "My name is Becky. I am such a...well, I always been such a huge fan of yours. Ever since Home. You're one of the few female characters I like!"
Missouri took a couple shaky steps back. "I beg your pardon."
"Oh you know," Becky said hurriedly. "When Sam and Dean went back to Lawrence because of the poltergeist and you helped them get rid of it. It's such a shame it took four full books before he wrote you back into the series again...but you're here...now...um...can I have your autograph?" Becky paused and withdrew a camera from the small satchel that hung on her shoulder. "And a photograph?"
"Uh, what is she talking about?" Missouri asked, nervously wondering who the crazy in the room was.
Dean looked flabbergasted. "You mean you don't know?"
Missouri eyed him cuttingly. "How many times do I have to tell you I'm a humble psychic...not God? Can nothing get through that thick skull of yours?"
Becky burst into a cackle. "You're just like in the book."
"Okay, what's going on? Someone spill," Jesse interjected, subtly positioning himself between Missouri and the crazy girl. Becky's gaze shifted to him.
Becky skipped forward a bit. "Ah, and you must be the mysterious new stranger - Josh!"
"Hmm, Mr. Edlund must have made a few revisions," Becky mumbled to herself. "The draft I photocopied had you down as a Josh. I wonder how long you'll last. Mr. Edlund has a real high turnover rate with his supporting characters. Most are in for a couple chapters and then *poof* - gone forever. I think it's the number one sore spot with the critics actually, that and the lack of strong female leads...or any women who -"
Sam had had enough. "Becky, sit down and be quiet. Missouri, Jesse, we need to talk..."
Missouri put down the paperback (that Becky had so kindly provided) with a resounding thump. "Well I'll be damned," she said, staring at the girl. "It's all in here. Everything that's happened so far."
Jesse was flipping through pages and alternated his gazes among Sam, Dean and Bobby who all felt completely naked as their lives were laid bare. "The hell..." Jesse trailed off. "Any resemblance to actual persons living or dead is purely coincidental my ass."
"Becky, why are you here?" Dean asked, his impatience finally getting the best of him.
She glanced towards Sam and blushed.
"Besides that," Bobby snapped.
Becky's lovestruck gaze turned solemn in a flash. "I want in."
Bobby laughed incredulously. "Excuse me?"
"You heard me," Becky continued. " I want piece of the action."
Castiel, who had been silent throughout, finally spoke. "Do you think this is some kind of game? For your entertainment like those books are? It may just be a matter of time before you and everything you know is erased from existence in the worst way possible."
"Well, duh." Becky yawned theatrically. "Hard to take college art classes seriously when I know all about this stuff that's going down. Besides, every effort I put in on finally graduating might be wasted anyway. I rather work hard at something that might help save the planet."
"So go out there and recycle," Dean responded irately then grabbed the books and shoved them into her hands. "Here start with these!" With that he began to forcefully `escort' her out of the room.
Jesse watched on and asked Missouri in a whisper, "You getting anything?"
"No, there's some kind of psychic static around her. There's very few things that could cause something like that," Missouri said, her eyes narrowing. "Lord knows what this girl has gotten herself mixed up in. Those books have all kinds of dangerous information in detail. Look, here it says how to summon a crossroads demon."
Becky shrieked, commandeering all attention, as Dean yanked at her arm. She dropped her precious books and clutched onto Sam's pants leg with a vise-grip and began to plead and beg. "Please just hear me out! I can be really useful to you guys! Haven't I helped you out before?!"
"You led us into a trap before," Dean said and looked at her darkly as he remembered the whole `hill made of forty two dogs' incident.
"That wasn't my fault!" Becky said in her defense.
Bobby held up his hands for silence and Dean loosened his grip on Becky (though he didn't relinquish it). "Just what kind of information do you have to offer? And just how did you come by this information?"
Seeing an opening, Becky was quick to answer. "I...er...snuck into Mr. Edlund's hotel room and copied a few drafts of his newest book. That and the script."
Missouri looked at her in amazement and asked, "Script?"
"Oh yeah. Mr. Edlund is trying to pitch the series as a TV show," Becky announced with glee. "I heard on the Supernatural grapevine that he was headed to some interviews...and I...um..."
The shock of this newest revelation was enough to allow the rabid fan girl the opportunity to break out of Dean's hold.
A question had been bugging Sam ever since Becky showed up at his motel room door. "Becky, how did you find us? Is our location in the books?"
Becky shook her head. "No. Not by name. The town's name isn't specifically mentioned." Here she hesitated.
"Spit it out," Sam commanded.
"Well..." Becky said, dragging it out slowly. "I had a witch track you down. She charged a ton of money but it was worth it." She smiled lovingly at Sam. "Obviously. I had to use the classifieds and trial and error until I found the real McCoy but -"
"That is impossible," Castiel said with complete confidence. "The sigils I engraved onto their ribs blocks any and all tracking spells. There's simple no way -"
Jesse slowly raised his hand. "Not exactly true. There is one way you can be tracked. But it wasn't by using a spell."
Dean and Sam glanced at Castiel, who shrugged awkwardly.
"Psychometry," Jesse said with conviction. "My guess is that witch wasn't just into magic but was a psychic as well. The Enochian cloak protecting you was circumvented not pierced. It requires a very personal object though. Preferably of the target's own body. And the seeker must be someone with a really vested interest in finding the target. The stronger the emotional tie the better."
Becky glared at Jesse and pouted. "Spoilsport. I don't think I'm going to like you much."
"I think Becky qualifies as having a really vested interest," Missouri said with raised eyebrow. "And that's putting it kindly."
Bobby scratched his head absently. "Are you sure kid?"
Jesse nodded. "Oh yes. Enochian is OLD magic. Like the dawn of time. Back then psychic powers were unknown - they didn't exist. Humanity hadn't evolved to the point where we could access that kind of brain function. That's why Enochian sigils can't be used to shield against certain types of psychic detection - they weren't designed for the purpose."
It might also explain why Lucifer needed Azazel to breed special psychic children to free him, Sam surmised. To get around the Enochian based bindings that kept him trapped. The seals themselves must have an Enochian basis...
"I told you we were special," Missouri said lightly before turning to Becky. "Now, Miss Rosen...just what personal object of the boys do you have?"
Dean eyes glazed over as his one track mind took him to the only place it could. "Sam, are you missing any underwear?"
Sam gasped audibly and vehemently said, "No!"
"Kleenex?" Dean went on, twisting his face in mild revulsion.
His brother did not even bother to gratify him with an answer.
Missouri smacked Dean's head with a resounding crack. "Boy one more word and I'll make you rinse your mouth out with bleach!"
Becky shifted a bit uncomfortably. "Well, last time we met...when I was hugging Sam goodbye...I kinda had a small razor blade hidden between my fingers and cut a lock of hair. As a keepsake. To remember him by."
Jesse's jaw dropped. "You sure you weren't planning on cloning him?" He went on, "You could really use some CBT lady."
Becky's face twisted in confusion. "Cock and ball torture?" she asked in an almost inaudible voice.
"Heavens!" Missouri swore and shut her eyes tight, trying to ignore what she'd just heard.
Jesse shook his head and let out an exasperated breath. "No! Cognitive Behavioral Therapy!"
Becky reddened. "Oh."
"You are one sick chick. A woman like you should be locked up. Preferably in a padded cell," Dean said, his eyes flashing angrily. "Hand it over."
Becky took a few shaky steps back. "I don't have it on me at the moment. It's in a safe place. I need to be sure I can find you if I have to. Which brings me back to my point - I know things. I could be real useful to you guys."
"Missouri, read her mind," Dean said in a commanding voice.
The woman looked at him and said icily, "I can't seem to. And you better mind your P's and Q's with me, boy."
"You can't?" Dean fumed. "First the vamps, now this? Well you've been a whole lotta help!"
Becky plopped down on the armchair and made herself comfortable. "Well, I think it's time we worked out a little deal. Shall we begin with the sleeping arrangements, hmm?" Her lips curled deviously (which disturbed everyone in a very profound manner)...
"Where are you guys going?" Becky asked in her chirpy voice.
Later that morning Dean and Sam had left to go see to what other odds and ends were needed before they left town. Castiel was busy walking Alvin, Simon and Theodore (he had taken quite a liking to them) and Bobby was busy making calls to various hunters, trying to spread the word and request any help he could. That left Becky alone and bored.
Missouri ignored Jesse (who was signaling `NO' behind Becky's back) and said, "We're going to see to some shopping. Just a few pieces of clothing really. We need some...work clothes."
Becky's smile was back. "Ooh, can I come? If I'm going to be hunting evil I'm gonna need me some work clothes too."
"Sure," Missouri said to Jesse's dismay. Her curiosity about the girl was getting the better of her and she thought perhaps Becky might let a few things slip if treated different. You can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar, she mentally sent to Jesse.
The boy shook his head and replied, I don't catch flies. I swat `em!
"We can take my car," Becky said, jumping to her feet and grabbing her keys from off the small end table. "I need to buy gas anyway. I drove for three days to get here."
Missouri thanked her. As they walk across the small car park Becky went on and on about how much she loved Missouri's `character' in the books and wished she was around longer than two and a half chapters. Hearing of herself talked about in that way was a bit disturbing but Missouri did her best to ignore it. She now had an inkling of what it felt like to be stalked.
"I remember the last words you told Sam and Dean were don't be strangers," Becky said, rolling her eyes exasperatedly. "But would they pick up the phone and call? Noooo. Okay, hop in!"
"This is your ride?" Jesse asked, removing his sunglasses to make sure his eyes weren't deceiving him.
Becky nodded and lovingly stroked the hood. They were standing before a hot pink Mercedes Benz whose license plate read SAMLKR81.
Jesse knelt and inspected the custom rims shaped in the form of pentacles - Devil's Traps to be precise. "How can you afford this? I thought you were a college student?"
"I am. But I got a trust fund from my granddad," was Becky's easy answer. "I doubt I'll ever need to work for a living."
"Then why do you even bother to go to school?" Jesse asked. "If it was me I'd be living the good life!"
Missouri rolled her eyes. "To improve herself of course. Because a fool and their money are soon parted."
Becky surprised them both. "No. I just wanted my Wincest and Destiel fan art to look like they weren't dirty pictures drawn by a six year old."
"What's Wincest?" Missouri had to ask. "And Destiel? Sounds like...is he an angel?"
"You do not wanna know!" Jesse said (having been informed by a dismayed Sam just what Becky was into). He covered her ears as he would a child. "Can we go now?"
They wasted no more time, got in and were soon driving through the nearly empty streets of the small town's shopping district. The shops were only just opening and it seemed they had arrived early enough to beat any possible rush. As Becky looked for a legal parking zone (only to come upon sign after sign saying NO PARKING) Jesse could make out the pronounced brow lines on Missouri's face.
Still nothing from her? Jesse projected to Missouri.
She glanced at him via the rear view mirror. Not a thing.
All morning Jesse had been wracking his brains trying to figure out why Becky seemed to be immune to Missouri's mind reading skills. She was not a demon. Or an angel. Or a monster. As far as he could tell she was just a desperate human female in serious need of some psycho-emotional help.
There were a few spells to shield one's thoughts and aura he knew of. But they required not only the appropriate knowledge but massive amounts of spell power. So even if she did learn of such a ritual reading Supernatural (God what a stupid, uncreative name, he thought) it was highly unlikely she could have cast it. Could it have something to do with her messing about with a psychometrist?
"Ooh, here's a nice spot in the shade," Becky said, pulling into a public car park and parking under a shady tree. She made sure to check for bird nests in the branches above when she got out. Bird poop was the last thing she needed to deal with. "So what do we get first?" Becky asked.
"Regular clothing," Missouri said. "Jesse, why don't you go see to yourself and me and Becky here will make a girl's morning of it."
A girl's morning of it? Getting reliable info out of her will probably be like getting water from out of a rock.
"Sure," Jesse said, mentally kicking himself for his duplicitous behavior. "Call if anything comes up. We can meet back here and ask around for that army surplus place when we're done."
At that they crossed the road to the shops proper and parted. None of them noticed the male figure standing across the car park staring at them...
"Can I help you, sir?" the perky young blond asked Jesse in a saccharine voice. It was the seventh time since he entered the store.
Jesse did his best to reign in his temper towards the ex-high school pep squad skank (as he thought of her). "No, I'm just looking. Haven't seen anything I like yet."
"Might I make a suggestion?" she asked, fingering a ridiculously overpriced orange T-shirt.
Fighting back puke Jesse had to ask, "Are you color blind?"
"Orange is making a comeback," the girl insisted, looking thoroughly offended.
Images of Wentworth Miller in his orange prison jumpsuit filled Jesse's mind. "I don't even believe prisoners should be forced to wear orange. There's laws against cruel and unusual punishment."
The salesgirl (Julie by her name tag), obviously seeking her commission, was undaunted. "Okay, what about this outfit?"
"Brown jeans and a green tee..." he said, pretending to mull it over. "Okay, sure so instead of a carrot I'd look like a tree. Least I'd be moving on up the evolutionary ladder."
Julie bit back a few choice words and pasted on a smile. "This?"
"That actually might come in handy..."
She smiled and reached to take the bright red shirt off the rack.
"If I were about to fight a bull," Jesse finished, dashing her hopes yet again.
This was too much for Julie who looked to be on the verge of tears. "Well...call...if you need anything," she said and quickly turned tail and went after some other customers who'd just walked in.
"Yeah, sure, you bet," Jesse replied and picked up a black leather jacket that appeared to hold some promise.
It was then he felt the slap to the back of his head. He quickly spun around to find an upset looking Becky staring at him with cocked eyebrow.
"You're so mean!" she said in one of the most whiny voices he'd ever heard. "That poor girl."
Jesse sighed. "I thought you were shopping with Missouri."
"Oh she went to buy some underwire and a corset and well..." Becky trailed off before continuing in a whisper, "I really didn't want to be around for that."
Jesse blinked stupidly. "I don't blame you. Sometimes I think her corsets are the reason she gets mad so fast."
To both their surprise they shared a laugh.
"That looks nice," Becky said, indicating the leather jacket Jesse had been admiring.
Jesse nodded and put it back. His fingers lingered on it a tad too long. "Yeah, it sure does."
Becky looked at him, her face a mask of confusion. "Then why are you putting it back?"
Ah, the trust fund baby, Jesse thought. Must be unthinkable to her. "It's a little out of my price range," Jesse said simply.
Becky promptly grabbed the jacket and smiled.
"What are you..." Jesse trailed off before it hit him a moment later. "No. I couldn't."
Becky flapped her hands dismissively. "Pshaw! If you're gonna be risking your life to save the world you should at least look good doing it."
"I actually had come in to buy a couple things for the guys anyway," Becky said, leading the way down the aisle of clothing and grabbing various items as they went by. "Sam, love him to pieces, but he always wears those gosh darn flannel shirts. Considering the amount of disguises they use in their line of work you'd think they'd buy some more clothes for themselves. Like, take Dean with that one jacket of his."
Jesse smirked as the visual of Dean's weathered jacket came to mind. "I know. There's broken in and then there's just broken."
"Exactly!" Becky exclaimed, suddenly deciding that maybe she liked Jesse after all. "And don't get me started on Bobby! Somewhere deep down there's a DILF but you'd never see it under the beard, cap and those god awful rags he wears."
To this last sentence Jesse said nothing and instead shrugged and struggled to get unbidden images out of his head. Becky seemed to know the Winchesters and their mentor to a tee. No doubt she read her Supernatural books religiously. He made a mental note to have a deeper read of them himself...
"Castiel would like this I think," Becky said, fingering a fine new trench coat. "His is all torn up. I'd better get him a few more shirts while I'm at it."
"Vampire fight last night," Jesse said. "Demon possessed vampires."
Becky eyes lit up. "Really? That's new. I like it."
Jesse frowned. "Well I don't. They walked right over sigils and salt lines."
"Mr. Edlund is really upping the stakes and suspense," Becky said softly, wary of several fellow shoppers passing by.
Jesse had to remind her that Edlund was (as Castiel had explained) merely gifted with prophecy. He didn't determine what would happen. He merely foresaw the future and used it as inspiration for his books.
"Of course it seems he is a pretty sucky writer," Jesse said not so carefully. "Since he seems to be using the visions and dreams wholesale with hardly any input of his own. Because everything happens exactly as he writes it. I don't get why we can't just track this guy down and make him-"
Becky turned and said in a low voice. "Three reasons. First, sometimes he sees things AFTER they happened. Second, he already told them the ending - where Armageddon happens and we all die - and the boys said screw him and his writing. They're both worthless. And third, he's got an archangel protecting him. They use his information to try and make sure Armageddon goes down...and won't let us near him. I'm sure they probably edit his work - censor more like - and don't let him publish the juiciest bits." She pouted. "Fascists!"
"Okay, I'm done!" she continued in her normal perky voice. "Ch-ch-charge it!" she hollered, walking briskly towards the cashier with Jesse in tow.
It was by then time to check in with Missouri and kick off their hunting apparel shopping spree proper.
"Excuse me, ma'am, but do you know where my friend went?" Becky asked the Bootylicious store clerk.
The heavily made up woman (far out of her natural ghetto environment) squinted. "You was with the fat, screaming lady who couldn't fit into the corset, right honey?"
Jesse frowned at the rude (but apt) description of Missouri. Becky merely said, "Um, yeah."
"Oh she left about half an hour ago," the store clerk replied, then turned her attention back to her trashy magazine.
Missouri Moseley was indeed missing in action. They had agreed to meet back at Becky's car and she was nowhere to be found. So Jesse had called her cell phone. It kept ringing and then went to voice mail. Missouri almost always answered her phone before the first ring finished properly (owing to her precognitive abilities).
"I'll call Sam," Becky said, whipping out her phone and punching numbers in rapid succession. "He'll know what to do."
Jesse didn't bother to ask her how she knew Sam's cell phone number. Instead he shut his eyes and tried to think only of Missouri. Missouri? Can you hear me? There was no response. Of course it could mean she was just too far away.
"Sam says they're on the way," Becky informed Jesse. "He said we should wait here for them and don't do anything."
"Yeah, right," Jesse said dismissively. "I need a magnet. Lodestone would be better but... Do you have a pair of headphones?"
Becky looked hesitant. "Um, yeah."
"Can I borrow them?"
She opened the car door and fetched them. "What are you going to do?"
"Try and track her," was Jesse's response. "If the guys are here by the time I'm done then we'll at least have a lead to follow up on." So saying, Jesse suspended the headphones as one would a pendulum and diverted his thoughts to Missouri.
"Nothing's happening," Becky said disappointedly.
Jesse ignored her and did his best to focus harder. He didn't have a personal item of Missouri's to bolster the spell's power. But he had been in close contact with her just that morning. Hopefully it would be enough to at least get a general direction.
"It's moving!" Becky said with an excited smile.
Jesse opened his eyes. Indeed it was moving. Swaying from left to right, front to back. Presently it began to swing in ever expanding circles, wrapped itself tightly around his arm and snapped.
"Damn it!" he exasperated.
"What just happened?" Becky asked worriedly.
Jesse's expression darkened. "I think she's being cloaked."
It was by then apparent beyond reasonable doubt that Missouri was in genuine trouble...
"One lump or two?" the handsome young `man' asked Missouri, his sugar spoon hesitating above a steaming cup of herbal tea.
Missouri eyed him cuttingly. She was scared to pieces, true. But she was also an expert at hiding her real feelings. "Two please. Let's live dangerously."
They were seated in a little upscale coffee house on the other side of town. The place was bustling with people and if she didn't know better, Missouri would have long since got up and tried to make a run for it. But this was a powerful being. As evidenced by the ease with which it sneaked up on her (without her sensing it) and grabbed in the car park, then coerced her into the town center. She very much doubted she could get away easily and there was no telling who could get hurt if they got in the way of her and the stranger.
She took a sip of the hot tea. "I'm sorry. But I didn't catch your name as you were manhandling me through town."
"It's unpronounceable by human tongues," the man said a little patronizingly. "But you can call me Aaron. And I apologize for any...discomfort I may have unintentionally caused."
The front of civility the `man' seated before her annoyed Missouri to no end.
"Rest assured," Aaron continued, "I don't mean you any harm."
"Well that's comforting to know," Missouri replied, her eyes narrowing. Not knowing what manner of being she was dealing with she thought it best not to try and read its thoughts. Just in case the creature picked up on it. No point in giving away information needlessly.
Missouri eyed her cell phone which was sitting on the table next to Aaron. It had been flashing (on silent mode) continuously in the past half an hour. After warning her to be silent or else (complete with a `please' and `thank you') it was the first thing he saw to.
"Not that you haven't been a complete gentleman," Missouri said carefully, "but do you mind telling me the reason for this...meeting?"
Aaron put down his cup and his demeanor swiftly changed to stark seriousness. "Your friend. She has something that belongs to me and I intend to get it back."
"Friend?" Missouri asked, feigning ignorance.
"Yes. Your shopping buddy," Aaron answered impatiently.
Sam and Dean were right, Missouri thought to herself. That girl is trouble. This must have something to do with the drafts and scripts she stole.
Aaron's logic was simplicity in itself, as he explained. Since he couldn't have easily grabbed Becky without causing major commotion (due to the then bustling streets), he took Missouri when he caught her alone. A trade was in order.
"Friend is such a strong word," Missouri replied. "We've only just met this morning. I seriously doubt she -"
Aaron frowned. "She had better."
"Or what?" Missouri asked unable to hide the slight falter in her voice.
"Or I'll have to forgo the niceties and simply take what's mine from her by force," Aaron said. "I'm trying to be a nice guy and have her come forward."
Missouri grew puzzled. "Then why not answer the phone and-"
"Because," Aaron said, with an unnerving smile, "the longer you are missing, the more concern for your safety will grow...and the more compliant she will be to my proposal."
Missouri said nothing to that. Aaron seemed to know exactly what he was doing. He certainly appeared to have a firm grasp on human motivation and behavior.
"Your tea is getting cold," Aaron said crossly, then waved his hand over it. It promptly began to steam again. "Much better. Drink up."
With mildly shaking hands Missouri figured she had better do what he said and not anger him. She took up the cup, blew on it, and sipped...
To Be Continued...