Saved in a Flash – Part 5
Chapter Title: Something Wicked (rewrite of S01E19)
Chapter Summary: While hunting a new case in Upstate New York, Dean begins to train Hayley while Sam starts to finally open his heart a little more.
Universe: Superhero AU (Supernatural x Flash)
Characters: Hayley Allen (OFC), Dean Winchester, Sam Winchester, Sarah
Pairings: Dean Winchester x OFC, Sam Winchester x Caitlin Snow (overall series)
Rating: +18, NFSW (canon typical violence, swearing, eventual smut)
Series Warnings: Slooooooow burn (you will hate me, I’m talking no kiss before 300k), slight enemies to bffs to stupidly in love, canon rewrite with divergence, superheros & powers, dating other people, canon typical violence/angst/hurt, pining & heartfelt friendships, girl power. I’m sure there’s more…
Word Count: 11.8k
A/N: They’re all so cute in this one, eeek!
Settle in, get your favorite drink, because this is gonna be a very long ride. Hope you enjoy & Goodspeed! ⚡️😈
Feedback always makes my day, so make sure to leave some love!
Wanna be a superhero? Tags are open. Just dm me or send me an ask!
The Road So Far Series Masterlist
New Paltz, New York
Dean had spent the last six weeks training Hayley. He had started with simple combat moves, some wrestling, some MMA. She was fast but lacked coordination, and Dean knew he had a lot of work ahead of him before he would start her on weaponry. The two would still bicker a lot, but at least they didn't hate each other anymore – much to Sam's relief. It had gotten exhausting.
Hayley had helped the boys with their cases. She was most comfortable with crime scenes and research but still hoped Dean would at least let her shoot a ghost soon. The oldest Winchester had also discovered her perks: any food from any place and at any time (Big Belly Burger from her hometown was his favorite so far), digging up graves at super-speed, and reading thousands of pages of research in a few seconds.
When she wasn't hunting with the Winchesters or training with Dean, she worked in her lab at CCPD, did more training with Dr. Wells and Cisco for her speed, and had family dinners with the Wests or hung out with Mike, Caitlin, and Iris at the Blue River Bar in Central City.
Sam, on the other hand, had spent the last few weeks teaching Hayley about the lore and everything monsters while also dragging his companions across the country for hunts. He had found them a new case in upstate New York this time, where Dean had immediately located the nearest pub. Dean and Hayley had made themselves comfortable at the bar counter while the youngest Winchester had retreated to a booth with his research.
"What else did you find out?" Dean asked Hayley as they enjoyed a couple of beers. He had tried to help her figure out what happened to her mother. So far, he was still entirely clueless.
"Nothing, really. I just tried to remember everything I could from that night. There was definitely red and yellow lightning, it looked sorta like a person, and...oh, uh, the water in my aquarium was flowing in the air when I woke up that night."
"Definitely hadn't heard that one before," Dean sighed, shaking his head. Initially, he had hoped, he could help her figure it out in a week or so and send her on her way again. But she was still here, and so was he.
"Well, scientifically speaking, it could mean-," she started to muse but was quickly interrupted by Dean.
"Whoa, whoa, Speedy. We've talked about this. No science talk," Dean reprimanded her, cocking a brow.
"Fine," Hayley frowned. "Is he always like this?" she asked, gesturing at poor Sam, who was too focused on his laptop screen to have any fun. She had tried to get him out of his shell a little, and they had at least managed to have a movie night once a week. They had just finished all six parts of Star Wars yesterday. But drinking, meeting new people? Out of the question.
"Well, he was always a weirdo, but since Jessica...he definitely closed off more," Dean admitted, taking a sip from his beer. He had tried to get his little brother's mind off his girlfriend's death but to no avail. Granted, Hayley was a lot better at it than he was – his methods had always been a little questionable.
"He's not a weirdo. Stop calling him that," Hayley scolded with a chuckle, shaking her head at him.
"Fine," Dean mumbled with an eye-roll. "Ready for training tomorrow?" He wiggled his eyebrows at her, and she laughed.
"Depends on what your plan is and how much we drink tonight," Hayley replied and drank more of her beer, which she had spiked a little with her own speedster-booze formula.
"Huh, well, I'm gonna try my luck with either one of those two ladies," Dean stated, nodding his head slightly behind him.
"Brunette with a low-cut and a blonde with a little black dress. Very cliché, Dean," she teased him.
"Says you. I know you've been checking out surfer boy by the pool table since we walked in here," Dean countered with a smirk.
"Yeah, he's got big hands," she grinned dreamily.
"Oh God," Dean huffed and banged his head against the wooden counter. Having girl talks with an actual girl was entirely new territory for him. He didn't even know how he got here; Hayley somehow had just inserted herself into his life.
"And full confession, I saw a glimpse of a tattoo."
"Welp, that's it. Full-on douchebag. Definitely your type," Dean said teasingly, and she narrowed her eyes at him playfully.
"What can I say? I like 'em stupid," she said and tilted her head at him with a devilish smile.
"Why are you looking at me when you say that?" Dean protested but didn't take her teasing seriously, chuckling all the way, and she stuck her tongue out at him. While he could live without the girl talk, Hayley was a pretty fun road companion. She'd drink with him, she'd sing with him in the Impala, she'd always get enough food, and she was a good conversationalist.
"We should check in with Sam before we continue our evening," Hayley suggested.
Dean rolled his eyes. "Oh, c'mon, Speedy. He's fine," he argued, and Hayley threw him a look.
"C'mon, Winchester. Only takes five minutes," she said and grabbed him by his wrist, dragging him over to Sam's table.
"Hey Sam," she said softly, giving him a big comforting smile.
Sam glanced up at them, slightly annoyed. "Guys, you don't need to check up on me."
"See? Told you he's fine," Dean mumbled, earning him a jab in his rips from Hayley.
"What did you find about the case?" Hayley asked Sam, ignoring the oldest Winchester.
"Mark and Ann Telesca of New Paltz, New York were both found dead in their own home a few days ago. Throats were slit. There were no prints, no murder weapons, all doors and windows locked from the inside," Sam informed them.
"Could just be a garden variety murder, you know – not our department," Dean replied, taking a sip from his beer bottle.
"No. Dad says different," Sam stated.
"What do you mean?" Dean asked as Sam took out a map and started pointing at it.
"Dad noted three murders in the same area of upstate New York. First one here in 1912, second one right here in 1945, and the third in 1970, the same M.O. as the Telescas. Their throats were slit, doors were locked from the inside. Now, so much time had passed between murders that nobody checked the pattern except Dad. He kept his eyes peeled for another one," Sam explained.
"And now we got one. All right, I'm with ya. It's worth checking out. We can't pick this up 'til first thing though, right?" Dean asked and looked expectantly at Sam. "I got two girls over there, could possibly hook you up. What do you think?"
"Dean, no thanks, I can get my own dates," Sam responded grumpily.
"Yeah, you can, but you don't," Dean muttered under his breath. Hayley kicked his leg and shot him a warning look. By now, the whole world knew Sam needed to get out of his cocoon, but she wasn't sure pushing him into a bar hook-up was the right thing for him.
"What is that supposed to mean?" Sam asked his brother.
"Nothing," Dean shrugged and shared a look with Hayley. "See you tomorrow, Sammy."
Sam was up early, filled three plastic cups with disgusting motel coffee, and woke up the two dead-asleep party animals. At this point, Sam didn't know which one was worse – Dean and Hayley constantly fighting or actually getting along. He dragged them into the Impala but was unsuccessful in convincing them to come with him into the Telesca's home. The house was already emptied by moving companies, and after a furrow EMF sweep, he determined nothing was wrong with the building.
He returned to Dean and Hayley and informed them of his findings. The family's history was clean, so the three's theory fell on a cursed object. They located the Telesca's furniture to an auction house near the country club in town. As they walked across the parking lot, Hayley glanced at the expensive cars and some folks of the upper-class mingling in fancy clothes. She knew immediately the three of them were out of place. She was wearing a plaid skirt and her scarlet leather jacket, Dean was wearing the usual flannel under his indigo jacket, and Sam was pretty much his twin in olive.
The floors and walls inside the building were shining white marble with hints of gold, classical violin music was playing in the background, and antique furniture and paintings were neatly displayed. Dean swiftly grabbed a handful of finger food as a waiter passed him with a tray.
"Consignment auctions, estate sales. Looks like a garage sale for wasps if you ask me," Dean whispered to them, taking even more food from a buffet table behind him.
"Can I help you, gentlemen?" An older man approached them, dressed in a black suit and tie. He looked displeased at the sight of the three, and it reminded Hayley a lot of her ex-boyfriend's mother. That woman had also been quite the snobby treat.
Dean just looked the guy up and down before he stuffed his mouth with more food, not giving a damn about the fanciness around him. He didn't care to fit in with these people.
"I'd like some champagne, please," Dean retorted, mimicking a posh voice, and Hayley chortled next to him.
"He's not a waiter," Sam hissed and looked at his brother sharply. Dean was like a wild animal sometimes that hadn't been housebroken yet. Sam held out his hand to the fancy man, introducing himself, "I'm Sam Connors."
The man just kept staring at him, not taking the youngest Winchester up on his invitation for a handshake.
"That's my brother Dean and his fiancée, Hayley. We're art dealers, with Connors Limited," Sam continued, unhindered by the man's death-stare.
Dean grinned at Hayley at his little brother's introduction and planned to exploit the situation. She narrowed her ocean eyes at him before he grabbed her waist and pulled her closer to him. She eventually obliged to his scheme and stole some food from his hand. Her stomach had been growling the whole damn morning because Sam had forgotten to feed her.
"You are art dealers?" The man raised an eyebrow at them doubtingly.
"That's right," Sam asserted with a confident nod.
"I'm Daniel Blake. This is my auction house. Now, this is a private showing, and I don't remember seeing you on the guest list," the man replied.
"We're there, chuckles. You just need to take another look," Dean replied cockily with a full mouth. Another waiter passed him with a tray of drinks, and he swiped a glass.
"Oh, finally." Dean turned back to Mr. Blake and sniffed the flute of champagne, raising his brows before he walked away, pulling Hayley by her arm with him. Sam hastily followed them.
The brothers and Hayley then looked around the auction house and wondered about all the weird crap rich people were interested in buying. They stopped by a painting of a family, and Sam curiously took a closer look at it. The portrait showed a husband and wife and their three children – two sons and a daughter holding a doll.
"A fine example of American Primitive, wouldn't you say?"
The three turned around, surprised. The voice belonged to a beautiful young woman with dark hair tied up in a loose bun. She wore a long, elegant midnight-black dress and threw them the kindest smile as she flowed down the big spiral staircase.
What an entrance, Hayley thought. Even Dean seemed to think so as he slapped Sam's arm, starry-eyed.
"Well, I'd say it's more Grant Wood than Grandma Moses," Sam replied as he glanced back at the painting. "But you knew that. You just wanted to see if I did," he smiled at her. Both Dean and Hayley stared perplexed at him.
"Guilty. And clumsy. I apologize." She curtseyed jokingly. "I'm Sarah Blake."
"I'm Sam. This is my brother Dean and his fiancée, Hayley."
"If he says that one more time, I'm gonna kick him in the groin," Hayley muttered to Dean, who was still busy stuffing food into his mouth.
"Dean, can we get you some more mini-quiche?" Sarah asked him politely with a chuckle.
"I'm good, thanks," he stated, still chewing and swallowing his last bite.
"So, can I help you with something?" Sarah asked, glancing at Sam.
"Yeah, actually. What can you tell us about the Telesca estate?"
"The whole thing's pretty grisly if you ask me, selling your things this soon. But Dad's right about one thing, sensationalism brings out the crowds. Even the rich ones," she replied.
"Is it possible to see the provenances?" Sam asked, and Hayley was now really baffled with Sam. She hadn't taken him for an art enthusiast.
"I'm afraid there isn't any chance of that," Mr. Blake replied for Sarah as he appeared behind his daughter like a looming shadow.
"You're not on the guest list. And I think it's time to leave," he stated, irritated but too polite to show any real emotion.
"Well, we don't have to be told twice," Dean replied in his posh voice again.
"Apparently, you do," Mr. Blake emphasized and threw Dean a stern look.
"Okay. It's all right. We don't want any trouble. We'll go," Sam threw in, trying to calm the situation.
Dean cocked his eyebrows at the man before he wrapped his arm around Hayley's waist again. She groaned in annoyance as he gestured her out. Sam glanced back at Sarah as he followed the two outside, and she looked at him apologetically.
"Grant Wood, Grandma Moses?" Dean asked his little brother with a raised eyebrow as he unlocked the door to their motel room.
"Art history course. It's good for meeting girls," Sam responded, and Hayley giggled.
"It's like I don't even know you," Dean stated and shot his little brother a surprised look, shaking his head.
Hayley and Dean stopped for a moment and looked around the room, baffled. The decoration looked like it came straight from a 70s disco as a lot of silver and mirrors lined the walls, matching the mid-century modern white furniture.
"I hate to say it, but I'm pretty sure someone already shot porn in here," Hayley pointed out. She felt blinded by all the shimmering silver surfaces.
"You guys were probably too drunk to notice yesterday," Sam chuckled.
Hayley and Dean shared a look before nodding, "Yeah."
Dean threw himself on one of the beds before he turned to Sam. "What was…providence?"
"Prov-e-nance," Sam corrected him. "It's a certificate of origin, like a biography."
"We can use them to check the history of the pieces. See if any of them have a freaky past," Hayley chimed in as she walked into the bathroom, unpacking some of her stuff.
"Huh. Well, we're not getting anything out of chuckles, but Sarah," Dean said and snapped his fingers at Sam with a smirk.
"Yeah, maybe you can get her to write it all down on a cocktail napkin," Sam replied with a snigger.
"Not me," Dean responded, laughing.
"No, no, no. Pick-ups are your thing, Dean," Sam said defiantly.
"It wasn't his butt she was checking out," Hayley yelled from the bathroom.
"You hear that, Sammy?" Dean said, and the brothers exchanged a look.
"In other words, you want me to use her to get information," Sam frowned.
"Sometimes you gotta take one for the team," Dean replied simply, grinning all the way.
"Call her," Hayley agreed.
Sam had reluctantly called Sarah, and they met up in a high-class restaurant. Meanwhile, Hayley had decided to finally take a long shower after Sam had them woken up so uncomfortably in the morning and dragged them into the car without much discussion. In contrast, Dean had decided to grab some food for them, and she enjoyed being alone for once and make good use of her bathroom time. Sometimes living with the Winchesters in tight quarters felt like her mixed college dorm all over again.
When Dean came back, the water was still running, so he plopped down on the bed again, eating his burger with relish while he went through more of Sam's research. Maybe Hayley had been right all along, and pushing Sam into some bar one-night-stand was the wrong move. His little brother had been much easier to convince when it came to taking out Sarah.
He heard the water stopped running and glanced up from his books as Hayley walked out of the bathroom, only a towel wrapped around her. She looked at him like a deer in headlights, clearly not expecting him back so soon. The corners of his mouth rose to form a big smirk before an idea popped into his head.
"Hey, I thought since Sam was on a date, you and I could have some fun," Dean stated, trying to be mysterious and ambiguous on purpose. And it seemed to work – Hayley narrowed her baby-blue eyes warily at him.
"And what exactly would that be?" she asked carefully, and he chuckled.
"Get dressed. I'll tell you on the way," Dean replied, still not giving her a full answer.
She tilted her head at him suspiciously but complied either way and grabbed her oversized S.T.A.R. Labs sweatshirt and some black leggings from her weekend bag while Dean was already waiting in the Impala for her.
He drove them out of town until they reached the woods. He took a dirt road leading them deeper inside the forest. As Hayley watched the sea of oaks, maples, and beeches pass her by, she sincerely hoped Dean hadn't decided to kill her. In the short amount of time she had spent with the brothers, she had actually gotten quite used to her part-time life on the road. She even loved the smell of the leather in her nose when she fell asleep on the backseat of Dean's car and the soft classic rock that woke her back up from her slumber. Although she loved being alone in her apartment, sometimes it was nice having people around – especially people that understood.
Dean parked the car near a little abandoned hunter's cabin, surrounded by tall trees reaching to the clouds. He got a case of six-packs out of the trunk he had bought earlier, opened two of them, and handed one to Hayley before he grabbed a brown paper bag with empty beer bottles, which he had collected over the last week.
It was the first day of May, and the warm spring temperatures slowly changed to a familiar summer heat. Dean strolled over to a little fence post and placed several empty bottles on top of it before he joined Hayley again, who leaned casually against his Baby's trunk, sipping on her beer. He pulled his gun from behind his jeans and held it out to her. She looked up at him, confused.
"That's your idea of fun? Shooting bullets and drinking beer?" She cocked one of her eyebrows before she glanced hesitantly down at the gun in his hand. "What are we, rednecks?"
Dean smiled at her but was still patiently holding out the firearm to her, not answering.
"Dean, I was raised by a cop, and I'm a certified RSO at CCPD. I know how to shoot a gun," Hayley stated.
"You're a range master?" Dean furrowed his brow in disbelief. He knew Hayley was talented in many areas (mostly real geeky stuff) and smart as hell, but he hadn't taken her for quite the gun fanatic.
"Uh, yes. And it's not like I wanted to do it. The old one retired, and Captain Singh needed someone who he could trust and would respect the rules, keep in accordance with all the safety guidelines...I believe his exact words were 'Let the nerd do it,'" Hayley imitated the Captain's bossy tone with a laugh.
"That makes a lot more sense," Dean chuckled. "So you know how to shoot?" She nodded confidently. "Great, then prove it," he challenged her with a grin and placed his gun in her hand.
She threw him an annoyed look but handed him her beer bottle before she removed the safety, took aim, and shot three times in a matter of seconds, shattering each bottle completely.
Dean whistled lowly, nodding impressed. "Not bad," he admitted.
"Not bad?" She glanced up at him with a cocky grin, putting the safety back on and handing the weapon back to him. "I have an accuracy range of 0.2 mm. You want me to calculate that for you?"
He grimaced at her. "No, thanks. But kinda surprised a mathlete is such a good shot," he huffed.
She giggled. "Are you kidding me? Dean, I can calculate wind flags, airflow, acceleration speed, distance..." He stared, perplexed. "But I do have to say, I wasn't always this good. Having superpowers definitely made a difference."
"What do you mean? You weren't using them now."
"Uhm, I'm kinda always using them...at least in some way, shape, or form. I don't know how to explain it. I can't really control it," she stated with a shrug.
"Try," he smiled. While he wouldn't want to switch with Hayley and have any abilities ever himself, he was quite curious how her powers worked. First of all, he needed to know how they worked, so he could use it to train her properly. And secondly, he liked the way she talked about her ability – like a gift. Unlike Sam, whose powers were a curse so far, not to mention utterly useless on a daily basis.
"Well, when something's moving, especially if it's fast, my eyes kinda adjust to it. Time slows, even completely stands still sometimes, frozen. And there's this calm that washes over you. It just feels peaceful and...quiet," she smiled as her ocean eyes twinkled up at him.
"Sounds nice," he agreed softly, matching her facial expression. He could use a little peace and quiet sometimes too. "But also feels kinda lonely, right?"
She chuckled. "Well, I do spend a lot of time with you and Sam, or my family, S.T.A.R. Labs, work, friends," she listed off elements of her busy everyday life. "Sometimes quiet is good."
"Right," he nodded understandingly, knowing she had a lot on her plate. Her life had completely turned upside down when she was struck by that lightning bolt and thrown into this weird new reality. Hayley had always had something in her life, whereas he had just his father and brother. And when both of them left him, he had been completely alone, and no one cared if he lived or died. Hell, they wouldn't even have noticed until it would have been too late and he was dead in a ditch somewhere, half-eaten by a monster before Sam and his father would've gotten there. Dean never wanted to be alone, much less with his own dark thoughts. Which is why he got Sam from Stanford in the first place.
"You okay?" She tilted her head sideways, and a comforting smile appeared on her face.
"Yeah, I'm fine." He cleared his throat and took a big gulp of his beer, hoping she wouldn't notice his uncomfortableness. "So, uh, if you're such a good shot, how come you're acting all skittish out on the field?"
She bit her lip, staring down silently at green spring grass underneath her sneakers. "Well, some might argue there's still a difference between shooting an inanimate object and a living, breathing person."
"Some might agree with you," he noted, a smile appearing on his lips as he took another sip from his bottle.
"I know you don't," she sighed, glancing up at him as they leaned against the Impala, enjoying the last sun rays of the day.
"It's not that I don't. The point is, those things we hunt...they aren't people," he argued but did so in a gentle tone. If he had learned one thing about Hayley the past few weeks – that girl had a heart of gold, who couldn't even kill a spider.
"But they used to be, right? I mean, most of the lore says they are turned, so it's like a disease. And if it's a disease, there must be a cure. There's always a cure," Hayley countered in the logical manner she always did.
"Well, lore's crap. No one knows where they came from, and no one's ever found a cure. So the only way to get rid of them and protect people is to kill them."
"Look, it's not like I don't see all of that. I have no problem sending spirits to the underworld or shooting a criminal in the knee so he can't escape. But decapitating a vampire, stabbing someone in the heart, God knows what else...? It's a lot to take in," she admitted, folding her arms across her chest. She didn't want to seem weak in front of him. While they had been sort of friendly recently, Dean had given her a hard time in the beginning, and she didn't want to get kicked out again.
He was silent for a minute, thinking about his own dark memories again from past hunts. He knew it was never fun to see, especially for a civilian. He almost felt guilty he had grown so accustomed to killing monsters, he couldn't relate to normal people anymore. And Hayley had just proven once more to him that she might be even more human than him and Sam combined. Her humanity and innocence in all of this might be annoying to him most of the time, but deep inside, he knew it was also the thing that had made life a little more bearable the past few weeks. He wouldn't want to take that away from her.
"It's okay," Dean stated as the sun disappeared behind the horizon. Through the lingering darkness, he could still see the surprised look on her face, and it made him chuckle.
"Really?" Hayley wrinkled her brow suspiciously.
"Really," he affirmed. "Honestly, when we started this, I figured it was more of a, uh, muscle-brain type of deal anyway."
She giggled, "I like that arrangement, Winchester."
"I mean, you're helluva good at crime scenes," he complimented her but cleared his throat quickly. "And I don't mind killing things." In fact, he had never given it much thought, even before.
"Oh, I know." She threw him a sideways glance with a chuckle. "You tried to kill me, remember?"
"Yeah, well, for what it's worth...would've been a mistake," he replied and bit his lip, taking another sip of beer a little flustered as she observed him curiously.
Sometimes their interactions confused him as the lines between bickering, bantering, bonding and straight-up flirting blurred more and more. He blamed both Hayley and Sam equally for it. Hayley, because she had allowed him to flirt with her the night they met and opened that door in the first place. And Sam, because he had basically threatened Dean not to hit on their new friend, which was idiotic as that only made it more appealing. Had his brother never heard about forbidden fruits?
And maybe it was just awkward for him because he had never hung out with a woman this much without trying to sleep with her. Hayley certainly didn't seem to feel uncomfortable at the slightest, and she was more of an expert than him when it came to collecting friends. So he mostly swallowed those tiny thoughts of naughtiness that crossed his mind every once in a while and moved on.
"So, what do you think? Wanna try bow hunting next?" Dean grinned at her.
"Uh-huh. Not gonna happen," she shook her head, laughing, and he joined in.
When Dean and Hayley made it back to the motel room, it was already past midnight. They'd figured Sam might stay out later and had occupied themselves with some poker and beers while Dean had turned on the radio of the Impala, playing soft music as they had some fun and chatted. Dean was surprised to find out she was even an excellent poker player but didn't know she could actually count cards. She planned on never telling him that, though, fearing a trip to Vegas. Dean couldn't be trusted with this sort of valuable knowledge. Besides, he had made fun one too many times of her math skills – and no one messes with her math.
They were more than baffled to find Sam already at home, studying more research at the dining table.
"Hey, where have you guys been?" He glanced up from his research at them suspiciously. He guessed they might have sought out the bar again, but frankly, he didn't fully trust his older brother alone with Hayley.
"Training. Went to the woods to shoot some bottles," Dean replied, partially truthful. He left out the other stuff on purpose, reckoning another one of Sam's lectures.
"How was your date with Sarah?" Hayley asked and smiled at the youngest Winchester.
"Uh, good. She gave me the provenances," Sam replied, and Hayley sighed, throwing him a look.
"So she just handed the providences over to you?" Dean questioned, furrowing his brow at his little brother.
"Provenances," Sam corrected him.
"Pro-ve-nan-ces?" Dean spelled out with a raised brow, and Hayley giggled.
"Yes. We went back to her place. I got a copy of the papers," Sam said casually without looking up. His date with Sarah went well even after some initial awkwardness. But all he could think about was Jessica and how he could never go back to that life again.
"Oh, so you did go to her place. And?" Hayley grinned, leaning forward curiously as she sat cross-legged on the bed.
Sam threw her a glare. Not her too, he thought.
"And nothing. That's it. I left," Sam replied swiftly.
"You didn't have to con her or do any…special favors or anything like that?" Dean wiggled his brows with a cheeky grin as he plopped down on his bed next to Hayley.
"Guys, would you get your mind out of the gutter, please?" Sam said to them, annoyed, but the oldest Winchester just laughed at him.
"You know when this whole thing's done, we could stick around for a little bit," he suggested.
"Why?" Sam cocked an eyebrow.
"So you could take her out again," Hayley gave him a leg up. She didn't know whether Sam was purposely playing dumb or if he really was that oblivious.
"It's obvious you're into her. Even I could see that," Dean pointed out.
But Sam ignored them and stared at the papers in front of him. "Hey, I think I've got something here," he said, handing Hayley a bunch of papers.
"Portrait of Isaiah Merchant's family painted 1910," she read. It looked awfully similar to that painting of the family in the auction house.
"Now compare the names of the owners with Dad's journal," Sam said, and Dean grabbed the journal to look at his father's notes.
"First purchased in 1912, Peter Simms. Peter Simms murdered 1912. Same thing in 1945. Oh, same thing in 1970," Dean confirmed Sam's hypothesis.
"Then stored, until it was donated to a charity auction last month, where the Telescas bought it," the youngest Winchester finished. "So what do you think? It's haunted or cursed?"
"Either way, it's toast," Dean concluded simply.
Breaking and entering was a felony and a part of the job, Hayley probably felt the most uncomfortable with. Aside from the killing and the constant identity theft and lying. But what other choice was there when lives were at stake?
Dean parked Baby close to the auction house but far enough out of sight. The three walked the remaining distance, avoiding any unwanted attention. They managed to cross the big metal gate gracefully; Sam jumped down first, followed by Dean, who helped Hayley along like the gentleman he was. But the building itself was guarded by a heavy security system, only accessible through an entrance code.
However, Hayley cleverly figured out the security code didn't have a trial limit, so she tried all the different combinations until one worked. With a disarmed security system, the three were unhindered to roam the auction house and found the creepy painting quite fast, even without superpowers. Dean cut the image out of its frame, rolled it up before the three snuck back out of the auction house, and burned it in a field nearby.
After their successful hunt, they decided to sleep in for once before the brothers would hit the road again, and Hayley was long overdue for another work shift. In the morning, she quickly got the boys their favorite breakfast – something healthy for Sam and the opposite for Dean. But the oldest Winchester suddenly rushed out in a hurry.
"We got a problem – I can't find my wallet," Dean announced, searching the entire motel room in a panic.
"How is that my problem?" Sam asked, still calmly packing his bag.
"'Cause I think I dropped it in the warehouse last night," Dean said, and Hayley narrowed her eyes at him skeptically, smelling another Winchester prank. Was she supposed to buy into his whole 'panicked' thing? She would have noticed if someone had left any evidence behind at that warehouse last night. It was her job to notice these things.
"You're kidding, right?" Sam asked and looked at his brother wide-eyed.
"No," Dean confirmed with a shake of his head. "It's got my prints, my ID, well, my fake ID anyway. We gotta get it before someone else finds it. Come on," he said as he grabbed the car keys.
As suspected, Dean had only feigned his panic attack and had his wallet all along. Coincidentally, the three ran into Sarah in the auction house again, giving Sam another chance to talk to her. Hayley couldn't help but smile at Dean's ridiculously elaborate plan to get his little brother laid. After his Oscar-worthy performance and the subsequent reveal of his wallet, Dean invented a silly excuse and snuck out with Hayley, leaving Sam to his own devices with Sarah.
Sam hated his older brother at that moment. He actually liked Sarah and didn't like lying to her. But what was he supposed to say? He wasn't an art dealer but a hunter, and they had absolutely no future together?
A few minutes later, Sam stormed out of the building and joined Hayley and Dean in the parking lot. However, something else besides Sarah had caught Sam's brown eyes inside – the creepy painting was back and seemed unharmed, considering they had ripped and burned it hours before.
"I don't understand, Dean, we burned the damn thing," Sam stated, perplexed as Dean drove them back to the motel.
"Yeah, thank you, Captain Obvious," Dean grunted. "All right, we just need to figure out another way to get rid of it. Any ideas?" He glanced at Hayley in the backseat, who only rolled her shoulders with a shake of her head.
"Okay, all right. Well, uhm, in almost all the lore about haunted paintings, it's always the painting's subject that haunts 'em," Sam mused.
"Yeah. So we just need to figure out everything there is to know about that creepy-ass family and that creepy-ass painting," Dean agreed, nodding.
The only thing in this town they could find that came close to a library was a second-hand bookstore with an easily-excitable proprietor. He was nice enough to hand the three all the books and old newspapers he could find on the Merchant family. Isaiah Merchant had slaughtered his entire family in 1912 over an alleged marital dispute before he committed suicide. He had not only slit his own throat, but those of his two sons, adopted daughter, and wife. At least, it explained the spirit's method of murder. Although the bodies had been cremated, the three were happy with their findings for now, and Hayley got a copy of the family portrait from one of the history books before they left again.
Sam was sprawled out on the bed in their motel room while Dean and Hayley were crouched over the little dining table. The boys were listening intently to her theory as she placed both pictures of the painting in front of her.
"I'm telling you guys, I'm sure of it. In the painting at the auction house, Sweeney Todd is looking down. Painting here, demonic barber's looking out. The painting has changed," Hayley stated and pointed her index finger at the father in her copy from the bookstore.
"All right, so you think that daddy dearest is trapped in the painting and is handing out Columbian neckties like he did with his family?" Dean questioned.
"Well yeah, it seems like it," Hayley replied with a shrug. She had no clue about ghosts or lore, but crime scenes and evidence she could do. Cases were just giant puzzles, after all.
"But if his bones are already dusted, then how are we gonna stop him?" Sam asked, and they looked over to him on the bed.
"All right, well, if Isaiah's position changed, then maybe some other things in the painting changed as well. You know it could give us some clues," Dean suggested, and Hayley looked at him, nodding impressed.
"What, like a DaVinci Code deal?" She chuckled. He gave her a dumbfounded stare.
"I don't know. Uh…I'm still waiting for the movie on that one. Anyway, we gotta get back in and see that painting," he replied, and Sam and Hayley laughed. Dean got up from his chair and strolled to his bed, throwing himself onto the mattress, and crossed his arms coolly. "Which is a good thing 'cause you can get some more time to crush on your girlfriend," he chuckled, looking at Sam.
"Dude. Enough already." Sam frowned furiously.
"What?" Dean shrugged innocently.
Hayley banged her head against the table with a frustrated sigh. The brothers shot her a quick look before returning to their oncoming fight.
"What? Ever since we got here, you've been trying to pimp me out to Sarah. Just back off, all right?" Sam scowled at his older brother.
"Well, you like her, don't you?" Dean asked, and Sam just raised his arms and eyes to the ceiling. "All right, you like her, she likes you, you're both consenting adults…," he trailed off with a smirk.
"What's the point, Dean? We'll just leave. We always leave," Sam said, frustrated, the volume of his voice rising.
"Well, I'm not talking about marriage, Sam," Dean replied, laughing. He looked at Hayley as she slammed her head on the table once more and furrowed her brow at him.
"You know, I don't get it. What do you care if I hook up?" Sam was agitated now.
"'Cause then maybe you wouldn't be so cranky all the time," Hayley mumbled and bit down on her lip.
Sam spun around and stared at her in disbelief while Dean chortled on his bed. "You know, seriously Sam, this isn't about just hooking up, okay? I mean, I, I think that this Sarah girl could be good for you," he argued calmly as he sat up on his bed.
Sam sighed, scratching his head. He knew Dean was right. Even Hayley agreed with his brother, and that was rare.
"And…I don't mean any disrespect, but I'm sure this is about Jessica, right? Now I don't know what it's like to lose somebody like that…but I would think that she would want you to be happy," Dean added softly, watching his little brother closely. Sam said there quietly, taking everything in as tears came to his eyes at the memory of Jess. "God forbid, have fun once in a while. Wouldn't she?"
"Yeah, I know she would," Sam replied, giving him a half-smile before he sighed heavily, "Yeah, you're right. Part of this is about Jessica. But...not the main part."
"What's it about?" Dean asked, but Sam looked away instead, refusing to answer. "Yeah, all right," the oldest Winchester said, knowing he had pushed too far. He laid back down on his bed with folded arms.
"Well, we still gotta see that painting, which means you still gotta call Sarah, soooo," Hayley chimed in, glancing at Sam.
He cleared his throat before picking up his phone, and Dean shook his head with a content smile, closing his eyes.
"Sarah, hey, it's Sam. Hey, hi. Good. Good, yeah. Uhm. What about you?" Sam stammered into the phone.
Dean opened one eye again, watching his little brother with a smirk.
"Yeah, good, good, really good," Sam repeated nervously into the speaker.
"Smooth," Dean whispered teasingly, and Sam glared at him.
To his dismay, Sarah informed Sam the auction house had sold the painting, and the three moved quickly before Isaiah's spirit could claim another victim. Luckily, Sarah had been nice enough to provide Sam with an address. However, they hadn't expected her to show up at the house as well.
"Sam, what's happening?" She asked Sam as she waited in the driveway.
"I told you, you shouldn't have come," he replied as he rushed past her to the front porch, followed by both Dean and Hayley.
"Hello, anyone home?" Dean shouted as he banged against the door.
"You said Evelyn might be in danger. What sort of danger?" Sarah questioned, not leaving their heels.
"I can't knock this fucker down. I gotta pick it," Dean declared and pulled out his picking tools from his jacket pocket while Sam continued to bang against the windows.
Hayley, on the other hand, snuck away and tried to find another way inside. Hunting seemed especially hard when there were people around who didn't know she had superpowers. And she wasn't too fond of the idea of blasting it to just anyone.
"What are you guys, burglars?" Sarah asked in shock as she watched Dean pick open the front door with ease.
"I wish it was that simple. Look, you really should wait in the car. It's for your own good," Sam told her worriedly as Dean opened the door, and the brothers rushed inside.
"The hell I will. Evelyn's a friend," Sarah stated stubbornly and strolled straight inside the house.
"Evelyn?" Sarah shouted as she walked carefully through the foyer.
"Evelyn!" Dean called out as he entered the living room before he noticed Hayley at the center, frozen in place. "How did you get in?" He asked as he approached her.
"Back door was open," she replied without glancing at him.
She stared straight ahead, and he followed her eyes to the fireplace, the painting hanging eerily above it. An older woman sat in a lounging chair in front of it, but her face was turned away from the four.
"Evelyn? It's Sarah Blake. Are you all right?" Sarah asked as she slowly proceeded toward the chair, passing Dean and Hayley.
"Sarah, don't. Sarah!" Sam shouted, trying to grab her wrist as she reached out her arm to touch Evelyn's shoulder.
As the three hunters had already suspected, the woman's head tipped back and exposed her slashed throat, leaving them with Sarah's scream ringing in their ears.
Sarah had called the police after her initial shock had passed while Sam, Dean, and Hayley fled back to the motel before the cops arrived. However, as the sun rose, Sarah stormed into their room, pretty upset. The poor girl still had no idea who they were or what was going on, and Sam had a rough time explaining the family business of hunting monsters to her. But even she couldn't deny the man in the painting had moved and all the deadly coincidences surrounding it.
However, Sarah was more than adamant about joining them now. "Look, you guys are probably crazy, but if you're right about this? Well, me and my dad sold that painting that might've got these people killed. Look, I'm not saying I'm not scared because I am scared as hell, but…I'm not going to run and hide either," she declared, striding to the door. "So are we going or what?" She glanced back briefly at them before walking out.
"Sam?" Dean said, and Sam looked over to him. "Marry that girl."
Hayley chuckled and nodded in agreement before they followed Sarah outside and drove back to Evelyn's home. It had been sealed off with police tape, but no cops were around anymore. They gracefully ducked underneath it and headed back inside, comparing the original painting to the copy again.
"Guys, look, the razor – it's closed in this one, but it's open in that one," Hayley stated as she held up the copy in front of her.
"What are you guys looking for?" Sarah asked curiously, looking over Hayley's shoulder at the copied version.
"Well, if the spirit's changing aspects of the painting, then it's doing so for a reason," Dean replied.
"Hey, hey, look at this. The painting in the painting," Sam noted and pointed to the painting in the background behind the family. The original showed a normal countryside, whereas the painting in front of them offered something different.
"Looks like a crypt, or a mausoleum or something," Dean mused and walked a few careful steps closer to it.
Hayley came up behind him and took out a small black and transparent device from her bag. She held the portable magnifier over the little painting in the painting. "Merchant," she read from the inscription on the crypt and glanced back at the boys.
New Paltz was a comparatively small town, but it still somehow had four cemeteries, so they decided it was best to split, and while Sam and Dean entertained Sarah on one graveyard, Hayley neatly checked out all the other three.
"So, this is what you guys do for a living?" Sarah raised one of her brows as she strolled alongside Sam.
"Not exactly. We don't get paid," Sam joked.
"Well, Mazel tov," Sarah mumbled.
"Guys!" Hayley came running up to them – at average human speed. "I checked out the other three cemeteries. No crypt," she announced.
"Wow, you checked out all three in half an hour?" Sarah asked, and Dean rolled his eyes at Hayley.
"Yeah, I'm kinda fast like that," Hayley chuckled, earning her a glare from Dean.
"Couldn't have stopped for ice cream, huh Speedy?" He whispered to her, raising an eyebrow before his forest green eyes caught something in the distance. "Over there." He tapped Hayley on her arm to get her attention and walked ahead to the little mausoleum.
The others followed Dean as he broke open the lock of the door. The crypt was full of dust and cobwebs, and Dean pushed them aside to make way for the girls. The walls were full of various signs of different names, and the brothers walked over to four urns with glass boxes behind them.
"Okay, that right there – is the creepiest thing I've ever seen," Sarah pointed out as she stood in front of one of the glass containers, looking at a little girl's doll.
"It was a sort of tradition at the time. Whenever a child died, sometimes they'd preserve the kid's favorite toy in a glass case, put it next to the headstone or crypt," Hayley said as she glanced at the doll.
"Notice anything strange here?" Dean asked as a gust of cold wind blew through the door and rustled some leaves around.
"Uh, where do I start?" Sarah stated sarcastically, looking around the creepy mausoleum.
Sam chuckled as he watched her. He admired her bravery – a couple of hours ago, she hadn't even known all this existed, and now she was here with them, hunting a ghost.
"No, that's not what I mean. Look at the urns," Dean hinted.
"Oh, yeah! There are only four," Hayley finally realized.
"Yeah, mom and the three kids. Daddy dearest isn't here," Dean said, looking back at Sam.
"So where is he?" Sam asked, frustrated with this hunt already.
The four drove to the county office buildings next. Dean and Hayley went inside, leaving Sam and Sarah behind to give them some alone time, and the two sat down on a small concrete wall outside the building.
"So what exactly are they doing in there?" Sarah asked Sam after they had been sitting and waiting there quietly.
"Searching county death certificates, trying to find out what happened to Isaiah's body," Sam explained.
"How'd they even get in the door?" Sarah asked.
"Lying and subterfuge mostly. Although Hayley works for the police, so she might have more luck legally," Sam said with a chuckle. "You have a, uh, you have an eyelash on your right…no, uh, you know what," Sam stammered as he watched Sarah reach for the loose eyelash, searching her face with her fingertips and, he laughed. "Do you mind if I get it?"
"No," she smiled at him, her cheeks blushing a rosy-red as he reached out his hand and gently grabbed the eyelash between his fingers.
"Okay, I got it. Make a wish," he said with a smile, and she laughed before she softly blew it away.
"Sam, can I ask you something?"
When she glanced up at him, he thought she was beautiful as her dark brown hair shimmered in the golden afternoon sun, and her green eyes stared mesmerizingly at him.
"Yeah, sure," he replied but already regretted the answer.
"I don't mean to be forward, but a girl could wait here forever. Is there something here between us? Or am I delusional?" She bit her lower lip with a small smile.
"You're not delusional," Sam said but fell quiet again.
"But there's a but coming," Sarah stated, disappointedly looking away.
"But…I don't think this would be a good idea," he sighed.
"Can I ask why?" She wouldn't be told off that easy.
"'Cause I like you," Sam replied with a shrug.
She laughed, shaking her head confused. "Wait. You lost me."
They both started to laugh before Sam became serious again. "Look, it's hard to explain. Uh, it's just when people are around me – I don't know, they get hurt," he said, staring down at his hands in his lap before he dared to look at her again.
"What do you mean?"
"I mean like physically hurt. With what me and my brother do, it's…," he trailed off, taking a deep breath. "Sarah, I had a girlfriend. And she died. And my mom died too. I don't know, it's like, it's like I'm cursed or something. Like death just follows me around. Look, I'm not scared of much, but if I let myself have feelings for anybody…"
"You're scared they'd get hurt too," she finished for him. "That's very sweet. And very archaic."
He looked back up at her, surprised. "Sorry?"
"Look, I'm a big girl Sam, it's not your job to make decisions for me. There's always a chance of getting hurt," she told him.
"I'm not talking about a broken heart and a tub of Häagen Dazs. I'm talking about life and death," Sam argued. He didn't really expect her to be this stubborn.
"And tomorrow, I could get hit by a bus. That's what life is. Look, I know losing somebody you love – it's terrible. You shut yourself off. Believe me, I know. But when you shut out pain, you shut out everything else too," Sarah stated as her crystal green eyes pierced through him.
"Sarah, you don't understand. The pain that I went through…I can't go through it again. I can't," he said, shaking his head before their conversation abruptly ended when Hayley and Dean strolled out of the building again.
"Am I interrupting something?" Dean asked, and Hayley sighed. She had tried to keep him in longer when she saw the looks on Sarah and Sam's faces.
"No," Sam replied, a little annoyed.
"Not at all," Sarah said with an uncomfortable smile.
"Huh. Apparently," Dean commented, looking between the two of them.
"Told you," Hayley mumbled, and Dean rolled his shoulders back.
"So, what'd you get?" Sam asked, interrupting their not-so-silent conversation.
"Nothing. The surviving relatives of the Merchant family were so ashamed of Isaiah that they didn't want him interred with the rest of the family," Hayley replied.
"So, they handed him over to the county; the county gave him a pauper's funeral. Economy style. Turns out he wasn't cremated – he was buried in a pine box," Dean added.
"So there are bones to burn," Sam noted, glancing at them as they both smiled widely and nodded heavily.
"There are bones to burn," Dean confirmed.
"Tell me you know where," Sam said, and Dean shot him a grin.
The four waited past midnight before they returned to the cemetery. Sam and Dean were already knee-deep in a grave, shoveling dirt, while Hayley sat on the edge with a beer as Sarah stood behind her and shone a flashlight down at the boys. Sam crawled out of the grave with a gasp and positioned himself next to Sarah.
"You guys seem to be uncomfortably comfortable with this," Sarah stated with a glance down at Dean, who was sweating and dirty as he leaned on his shovel for support, heavily breathing.
Hayley held out a bottle of beer to him with a smile, and he took a sip thankfully before he continued digging.
"Well, uh, this isn't exactly the first grave we've dug. Still think I'm a catch?" Sam chuckled, and Sarah joined in.
"You know this would be a lot faster if you would do some digging," Dean complained, giving a sideways look to Hayley.
"You want me to get dirty, Winchester?" She raised an eyebrow playfully, biting down on her tongue with a grin before she hopped down into the grave. She switched her beer bottle for his shovel and took a quick look back up at Sarah.
Dean followed her gaze and winked at Hayley knowingly. He jumped up to join Sarah and Sam before he turned Sarah away from the grave. "Hey, Sarah, have you ever seen a moon this beautiful? I mean, Sammy here knows lots of romantic crap about it, don't you?" Dean successfully distracted the civilian, and Hayley shook her head with a giggle before she used her speed to dig.
"Think I've got something," she declared as she tapped her shovel against something hard.
Dean jumped back into the grave, taking the shovel back, and cracked open the pine coffin lid before the two looked down at a dusty old skeleton. Sam poured salt over the body while Hayley doused it in kerosene before Dean stroke a match – teamwork at its finest.
The last thing they needed to do was checking if their trick had worked this time, and the Impala pulled up in front of Evelyn's house again. Sam jumped out of the car first, closely followed by Sarah, who had shared the backseat with him as Dean had forced Hayley to give up her usual spot to give the two lovebirds some space.
"Keep the motor running," Sam told Dean as the youngest Winchester ran for the door.
"I thought the painting was harmless now?" Sarah asked as she trailed behind him.
"Better safe than sorry. We're gonna bury the sucker," Sam declared.
"I'm going with you," she stated stubbornly.
"You sure?" He looked at her, but by now, he knew he couldn't keep this girl from anything even if he wanted to.
She nodded decisively at him.
"Hey! Hey, hey," Dean called after Sam through the opened car window. "We'll stay here. You go make your move," he yelled in a whisper tone at his little brother.
Sam scoffed at him before turning back to Sarah, but Dean didn't give up that easy, adding, "Sam. I'm serious!"
Dean then proceeded to turn on the radio with a cheesy indie love song just as the couple reached the porch. They spun around to look at Dean in the car. Sam grimaced, and Dean turned the music off again with a sigh, shrugging his shoulders innocently before Sam and Sarah went inside.
"Stop pushing so hard, zookeeper. They're not pandas. You can't make them mate," Hayley chuckled.
"Yeah, I know. I don't get why that kid can't just let loose sometimes," Dean sighed.
"Sam's different. I mean, as soon as he went off to college, he ended up in a long-term relationship," she pointed out. Sam had told her a lot about Jessica, more than he had probably told Dean. She knew Jess was an English major and wanted to be a teacher. She was kind, smart, and funny. And if anyone could ever get Sam out of his shell, it was her. She even knew Sam had planned to propose to her because he was sure she was the one.
"I wouldn't know," Dean admitted. He wasn't embarrassed by the fact that his longest relationship lasted only three weeks and everything else was just a string of one-night-stands and brief weekend affairs.
"Well, I don't think you've really ever tried, Dean," she commented with a smile.
"Maybe. But what's the point? People just leave eventually," he shrugged, and she threw him a look.
"So? Maybe they do, maybe they don't. Point is, you don't know until you try," Hayley stated.
He glanced at her. "What about you?"
"What about me?" She cocked at an eyebrow.
"Whatever happened to surfer boy? You're gonna try with him?" Dean chuckled.
"Ha, no! Turns out he's a full-on flat-earther," she laughed. "So it ended at third base for him."
"You still let the guy go until third?"
She shrugged, speechless. "He was good at human anatomy. I don't know what to tell you, man," she giggled, trying to defend her actions, and he laughed. "And it's not like one of your ladies is gonna win the Nobel anytime soon."
"Hey, they don't have to," Dean grinned cheekily. "And I dated smart women before. I'm sure you've been around for Cassie," he countered.
"Oh yeah, I liked her. She had sass and spunk and was smart. I honestly don't know what you're doing with your life. She was great," Hayley added.
"Yeah, she was," Dean chuckled, agreeing. "But you've mentioned an ex-boyfriend before. Bartender, right?"
"Yeah, Mike," she nodded. "We dated in college for almost two years."
"Why did you guys break up?" Dean could feel himself doing it again – being too curious for his own good.
"Nothing major, really. I only ever went to college to get my degrees and see if I can find out more about my mom's murder. So when I was done, I moved back to Central City, and his family lived in Boston, so..."
"So you just broke up with him? Poor guy," Dean sighed sympathetically. "But what's he doing bartending in Central City then?"
"Well, six months later, he moved there. And I guess we would've gotten back together...," she trailed off.
"I got struck by lightning, was in a coma for nine months, and got superpowers," Hayley stated nonchalantly, and he nodded understandingly.
"Right. But he still stayed? Even when you were basically hopelessly dying?"
"Probably? What's your point, Winchester?" She narrowed her ocean eyes at him suspiciously.
"Huh. Look at you, Speedy. Leaving a trail of broken hearts behind you," Dean noted with a smirk. "Makes sense too. I mean, your dad's in prison. Most girls would end up on the pole."
She slapped his arm playfully when he laughed while her jaw dropped to the floor. "Dean!"
Their bantering stopped suddenly when the front door of Evelyn's house slammed shut with one loud bang. Hayley raced out of the Impala before Dean could even glance back at her. He jumped out of the car and caught up with Hayley by the closed door. She was trying hard to get it open again before he pushed her out of the way and tried to break it open himself, but also turned up unlucky.
"Dean! Hayley! Is that you?" They heard Sam shout on the other side of the door.
"Sammy, you all right?" Dean asked, concerned before he received a phone call from the youngest Winchester. "Tell me you slammed the front door," he answered his phone while he put Sam on speaker.
"Nope, it wasn't me. I think it was the little girl," Sam stated.
"Girl? What girl?" Dean questioned with a furrowed brow as Hayley suddenly sighed next to him.
"Ooooh, that's why Isaiah was looking down at her earlier!" She exclaimed, throwing her hands high up in the air before she grabbed her head as if mindblown.
"Yeah, she's out of the painting. I think it might've been her all along," Sam agreed.
"Maybe he was trying to warn us," Dean joined in on their theory.
"Hey, hey, hey, let's recap later, all right? Just get us out of here," Sam urged them.
"Well, I'm trying to pick the lock. The door won't budge," Dean said, frustrated as he fumbled with the picks in his hands.
"Well, knock it down," Sam ordered him.
"Okay, genius, let me just grab my battering ram," Dean scoffed.
"Get out of the way," Hayley said and pushed Dean gently to the side. Then she disappeared, and soon, a bolt of lightning struck the door.
Dean watched as she was thrown backward several feet and landed on her back on the hard concrete. But the door was still closed as he ran over to her and helped her to her feet.
"I think I broke something," she muttered, grimacing in pain.
He raised his brows at her, mumbling, "Yeah, you bet you broke something, just not the door, Speedy."
"Dean, the damn thing is coming," Sam yelled through the phone.
"Well, you're just gonna have to hold it off until we figure something out. Get some salt or iron," he ordered his little brother.
Dean and Hayley listened intently to the noises coming from the speakers and the house inside itself. "Sammy, you okay?" Dean checked in after he heard a louder crash.
"Yeah, for now," Sam replied, and his older brother sighed, relieved he was still alive.
"How we gonna waste her?" Dean wrinkled his forehead in frustration.
"I don't know. She was already cremated. There's nothing left to burn," Sam pointed out.
"Then how's she still around?"
"There must be something else," Sam mused.
"Sam, wait. We used to handle antique dolls at the auction," they heard Sarah chime in. "Back then, they used to make the dolls in the kids' image. I mean everything; they would use the kid's real hair," she explained.
"Guys, Sarah said the doll might have the kid's real hair. Human remains, same as bones," Sam repeated to them.
Hayley and Dean shared a wide-eyed look before they both exclaimed the same thought, "The mausoleum!"
Dean let the Impala come to a screeching halt directly in front of the Merchant crypt, breaking for sure several laws. However, he didn't care that he had just raced across a graveyard and drove straight through closed gates.
Hayley head-started into the mausoleum, banging frantically against the glass box before she paced the little crypt, trying to think of something to open it with when Dean came running in. She quickly grabbed his gun from behind his back without thinking twice and shot right through the glass of the container, shattering it around them. She snatched the doll and threw it to Dean, who caught it expectantly.
Dean quickly pulled a lighter from his jacket pocket and flicked it open as he held the flame under the doll's hair. It slowly started to burn before he dropped the ignited doll to the ground.
"Nice shot, by the way." He glanced at Hayley with a grin.
"Thank you," she replied happily as she returned the weapon to its rightful owner.
Sam and Sarah had survived the little girl's attack, even though it was a pretty close call briefly. Luckily, Dean and Hayley had managed to save the two just in time. But now Sam felt even more bonded to Sarah, and their case was over – he would leave again with no promise of return.
Dean, Hayley, and Sam got a few decent hours of sleep before they returned to the auction house to say their goodbyes to Sarah. On the ride there, Sam's companions had reiterated profusely how he had to make his move, but he decided to ignore them.
They found Sarah in the middle of the room, observing two men as they packed up the freaky Merchant family portrait and carried it outside.
"Uh, this was archived in the county records," Hayley stated as she handed Sarah some papers.
"The Merchant's adopted daughter, Melanie. Know why she was up for adoption? 'Cause her real family was murdered in their beds," Dean added.
"She killed them?" Sarah raised one of her brows in disbelief.
"Yeah. Who'd suspect her? Sweet little girl," Dean chuckled bitterly. "So, then she kills Isaiah and his family. The old man takes the blame. His spirit's been trying to warn people ever since."
"So why'd the girl do it?" Sarah asked.
"Killing others? Killing herself? Some people are just born tortured. So when they die, their spirits are just as dark," Sam explained.
"Maybe. I don't really care. It's over; we move on," Dean said with a shrug, and Hayley giggled. Sometimes life really was that simple.
"Uh, I guess this means you're leaving," Sarah mused with a sad look at Sam.
Sam turned around and witnessed a widely grinning Dean and Hayley, waiting expectantly for him to make a move as they wiggled their eyebrows.
"We'll go wait in the car," Hayley said and kicked Dean lightly. "See you, Sarah."
She hooked her arm through Dean's, trying to guide him to the door. But the older Winchester didn't budge an inch, waiting there awkwardly for a second before he finally conceded and followed Hayley's lead.
"I'm the one that burned the doll and destroyed the spirit, but don't thank me or anything," he grumbled, and Hayley chuckled and patted his arm sympathetically.
"Yes, you're the hero, Dean," she asserted him, and he smiled, satisfied at least one person recognized his heroism.
The two waited patiently outside for Sam, leaning against the hood of the Impala as they enjoyed some sun. When Sam finally emerged from the auction house, they watched the couple curiously. However, Sarah closed the door without giving the youngest Winchester a goodbye kiss, and Dean turned around disappointed.
But he suddenly felt Hayley's hand on his bicep, pulling him back around before he had reached the metal door handle and glanced back up to the entrance of the building. It opened again, revealing a smiling Sarah, and Sam took a step closer to her and ultimately went in for the kiss.
"That's my boy," Dean grinned proudly, and Hayley shook her head at him with a laugh before her phone suddenly vibrated in her pocket.
"Joe?" She answered it, and Dean's green eyes darted to her, burning with curiosity. "Yeah, I'll be right there," she said as she hung up again.
"Something's up?" Dean asked while Sam approached the two with the broadest smile they had seen on him in a long time.
"Yeah, Joe thinks there's likely a meta-human on the loose. He wants me to check it out," she replied.
"Okay, let's go," Dean announced as he opened the driver's door.
"Dean, I'm way faster on foot than by car," she stated patiently with a small smile.
He sighed but knew she was right. "Fine, but we'll meet you there." He gave her a stern look that told her there was no way from keeping the brothers out of this, and she nodded.
"Okay, I'll meet you guys at S.T.A.R. Labs in a few hours," she said but didn't even wait for their response before she vanished.
The boys shared a look before Dean gestured to the Impala. "Let's go."
Please reblog, like, comment, send me an ask or dm & let’s chat! And let me know if you want to be tagged in this series :)
4 notes · View notes