ultraviolet9a: (impala)
[personal profile] ultraviolet9a
>> They are not all saints

TITLE: They are not all saints
AUTHOR: [livejournal.com profile] ultraviolet9a
SPOILER: Vaguely for all season 4 and for The Graveyard Book.
GENRE: Gen. Supernatural/The Graveyard Book.
CHARACTERS: Sam, Dean, Silas
SUMMARY: “If you drop that match, I will have to harm you.”
RATING: PG13.
FEEDBACK: Dude… duh.
DISCLAIMER: Don’t own, no profit, don’t sue.
NOTES: Dear Mr Gaiman. Please please please don’t sue me. I meant no offence, it’s just that Silas haunted me. Dear Mr Kripke… well, you know how that one goes now, don’t you?
BETA: by lovely [livejournal.com profile] kattahj



Lisa, vampires are make-believe, like elves, gremlins and Eskimos.
-Homer Simpson




Like another story, years ago, this too starts in a cemetery. It’s not an ornate or overtly large one, just a cemetery this side of a small no-name town with an increasing rate in mysterious deaths the last weeks.

There is nothing unusual in the night breeze and the rustling leaves of the trees, nothing unusual about the silhouette of the town in the darkness. What’s unusual is that this tiny cemetery seems to have forgotten that graves are supposed to be covered up and the mausoleums locked, and it is strewn with salt and doused with gasoline from one end to the other. It makes one wonder who would have so much time and stamina, gasoline and salt to do all this, but the answer is probably easy: this is a hunter’s job. A Winchester one, to be more specific.

“If you drop that match, I will have to harm you.”

It isn’t a threat. It’s a statement, an undisputable fact like the Earth is round or This is the middle of nowhere (sort of) in the middle of the night and this guy has appeared out of the dark shadows around us and most importantly, we didn’t hear him.

Sam’s hand wavers uncertainly in the air. Even in the Impala’s lights the stranger seems to be cut out of some outdated cardboard darkness: tall, lean, pale. He’s dressed in velvety black and he’s holding no weapons.

“Christo,” Dean says.

“The conjugation is wrong,” the stranger sighs, lacing long-nailed fingers in front of him. “I never understood why that is working in the New Land. Back home demons would throw a fit.”

Sam flicks the match and the flame perishes. He licks his fingers where it momentarily burned him.

“I am no demon,” the stranger continues. He holds his palms open. “I am your ally.”

“Well, then you won’t stand in our way,” Sam says, carefully placing himself in a position ready to jump between Dean and the stranger.

Dean rubs the back of his head. “If you know your stuff, you’ll know that we have to burn down the cemetery before the ghosts trap someone else. They are dangerous.”

“Some ghosts don’t need to be set free,” the man, if a man he is, says. “Some ghosts happily linger on in their afterlife and move on when they choose to.”

“These ghosts are sadistic little bi…”

“Someone else was controlling them. Do not destroy the cemetery, other ghosts will be left homeless without the necessary time to move on.”

“That’s why we want to burn the place down.”

“I cannot allow that. There are innocent spirits here.”

“Sonofabitch!” Dean says, not for a moment questioning the statement-like voice. There’s something too familiar there, something Dean has learnt not to doubt.

“Indeed,” the man says. “There is no need for this. The real culprit has been… taken care of.”

“What do you mean taken care of?” Sam carefully asks.

“I mean that if you wish to put his bones on fire, by all means do so, Samuel Winchester. Why do you think it was so easy to strew the salt without any ghostly interference? It’s been taken care of.”

The logic is too solid, and sinks in the Winchester mind as fast as a stone in water, till something else strikes them, and makes them reach out for any weapon at hand.

“How do you know my name?” Sam says, eyes slivered in suspicion.

The stranger seems unimpressed. “Like I said, I’m an ally.”

“Who are you?”

“I am here to protect you,” he says.

“You threatened to hurt us,” Sam points out.

“Only if you dropped the match,” he says. And that is a statement, too.

And then Dean knows what the tone and reason remind him of. “You’re not an angel of the Lord by any chance, are you?” he asks.

“Hardly,” the man scoffs. “I’m Silas. Now help me close those graves up.”

.:::.

“So you are really a…” Dean starts, looking uncertainly at him.

“Indeed,” Silas says. The bottle remains unsipped in his hand.

“You are different than the ones we’ve come across before.”

“Our species vary. Like ghosts. Not all are raving maniacs.”

“Most are, where we come from,” Sam says, rolling the bottle within his palms.

Silas’ gaze is old. His words feel old, too. Older than the cemetery. Almost as old as night itself. “Death,” he says, “like life, rarely is white and black.”

Dean smirks. “Yeah, no kidding.”

The gaze Silas locks on him could splinter granite. “I rarely am.”

Dean pushes himself forward, leaning closer. He doesn’t give a shit about granite. He was raised by John Winchester. Though, he has to admit, Silas’ gaze is not bad at all.

“What’s going on, Silas? Really?”

“Your name travels fast,” Silas says. “It has travelled all over the world to those who have ears. You’re in the middle of a chessboard.”

It is perhaps ironic that a chessboard, unlike life or death, consists only of white and black, and the irony isn’t lost on the two men and Silas standing alone under the stars.

“And you?”

“I will try to be the objective observer who’ll help you become a player instead of a pawn.”

“Why?” Dean asks.

“I fought long and hard in this world.”

“Why?” Dean persists.

“Because I had to.”

“No, that doesn’t convince me,” Dean says shaking his head. “Why would a creature of the night do that?”

There’s the barest hint of a smile on Silas, as if something he is fond of has crossed his mind. Almost as if he’s reminded of someone dear. Then his brow darkens.

“I have a lot to redeem myself for.”

“Dude,” Dean says. “That’s not a reason, that’s a Whedon show.”

“You know,” Silas says. His eyes have a faraway look. “You know what it’s like. To feel like sole survivors of a fate that is dark. That the end of the world rests on your shoulders only. But the end of the world is everyone’s responsibility.”

Dean looks at Sam. Sam looks at Dean. He wants to say something, but Dean’s eyes shush him, so he lets the silence draw out a bit longer. It’s a Winchester thing, the silence. It makes people fill it up.

“I know you have been offered assistance from angels and demons alike,” Silas quietly says. His long-nailed fingers are splayed out as he leans against a wall. “And you think you are caught in between and I only confound you. But I have been the guardian of one who travelled different ways. I can be your guardian as well. What’s another stripe on a tiger?”

And the Winchesters don’t know if the proverbial tiger Silas is referring to is them, or himself.

“You’ve done your homework, I’ll grant you that,” Dean finally says.

Silas closes his eyes as if reaching a decision. “I am here to save the world for a boy who still hasn’t seen it all.”

“What boy?”

“My boy,” Silas says. And then he’s the one standing as still as the statues in the cemetery, looking at them. Waiting.

Dean looks at Sam. Sam looks at Dean.

“Guess there’s a backseat if you want to,” Dean finally says.

“I travel… faster,” Silas replies, faint smile just there. “We’ll be seeing each other, Winchesters. You can rely on that. Godspeed.”

And then he’s gone.

Soon, the Winchesters leave, too.

Soon, not even the night remains.

Around dawn it’s starts to snow. The snowflakes are fluffy and persistent, and won’t be daunted. They cover the salt, drown out the stench of gasoline in the crisp cold scent of winter, till there is no trace of the night before, till there is nothing more to add to this small cemetery story.

-The End.



I would have thought the end of the world is everyone's responsibility, wouldn't you?
-Death in Thief of Time


They are not all saints who use holy water.
-English Proverb



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