THEN: If you're new to the Sockchester Supernatural fan fiction series, this is Episode 5 in the epic saga of Sam and Dean Sockchester, hunters in one of Chuck's universes that exists parallel to the Sam and Dean Winchester we all know and love. The Sockchesters' are also in the 'family business' of saving socks, hunting things!
Each episode can be enjoyed on its own, or you can start at the beginning with Episode 1, which takes place in Kenmore, Washington! From there, you can continue with the Sockchesters' adventures through links at the end of each hunt.
NOW: Join the brothers on their latest hunt, "Truth or Consequences"!
The Sockchester Brothers' Supernatural
Episode 5 - Part 1
Truth or Consequences, New Mexico
A quiet cardboard Gas N Sip vibrates as five thunderous motorcycles slide to spots beside each pump. The riders disperse, joking with each other as the motors shut off one by one.
A bored employee inside the store stops mid-yawn. He freezes and then jumps the counter to turn his key at the door. He backs away as all nine riders saunter their way over to the store. One attempts to open the door, then, once that fails, he takes to tapping at the glass.
The employee darts behind the counter and huddles under the register while faint jeers and wolf whistles permeate through the glass. And that tapping…
The Gas N Sip employee chances a peek at the door. Spidery lines move out from the point of impact, getting larger with each tap.
The taps stop.
The employee frowns: What the --?
A large bald man with glasses and a lined dress shirt appears, standing beside him, facing the door.
The employee double-takes: Darren? What are you doing?
The man glances down: I am not this ‘Darren’. I am called Raguel. Don’t fear. We will destroy these demons.
The employee gapes: But--
The front door shatters.
Raguel slides a thin blade out of the arm of his dress shirt and holds it at ready.
A man decked in black biker gear and a cut off jean vest materializes beside him. He’s got big muscles, and a red tattoo of a snake curled around a stick as big as his face on his bicep: Raguel! My friend! What a surprise!
Raguel growls: N’ushtan!
Then he slams his angel blade against the demon’s arm. The slice heals almost as quickly as it appears.
The Gas N Sip employee uses the spare moment to press the panic button under the counter. It blinks red against his face.
The other eight bikers strut over the broken glass. The women toss snacks off their hooks and into their saddlebags. Another biker messes with the flavored ice machine. Brightly colored sludge pours out onto the floor. None seem too interested in Raguel grappling with N’ushtan behind the counter.
One smashes the case for spray paint with his hand. He reaches in and tosses a few cans to the girls.
Finally N’ushtan presses Raguel against the counter, the angel’s back bends as if it would break, but the demon breaks Raguel’s fingers with his fist to pull the blade out of his hand.
N’ushtan: I have to hand it to you. It is hard to get one of you guys alone. But you, coming in against all nine of us? That was just suicide.
N’ushtan slices Raguel’s neck and blue-white grace leaks out. A woman with a flirty smile dumps a bottle of beer on the floor and catches the grace inside it, then rescrews the cap on the bottle.
Raguel moans: The captain of the host will find you and you won’t--
N’ushtan pulls him off the counter and kicks the angel’s face. Raguel doesn’t move again.
N’ushtan: Ah, that’s better.
The biker lays a hand against the smokes case above and turns to the Gas N Sip employee.
N’ushtan: Hey Bert, why’d you try to lock us out this time? It’s like you don’t even know us. C’mon. You know us, Ash, Makah, Bull, and the rest.
He points to himself as he grabs a pack of cigarettes: N’ushtan. But you knew that.
Bert: Well, I--I just, uh.
N’ushtan: What’s wrong, Bert? Tongue-tied? You know, I’ve got just the solution for that.
A couple of the others pause in their pillaging to chuckle.
N’ushtan pauses as he sees the blinking light reflected in Bert’s pupils.
He tsks with his tongue: Hmm. A silent alarm? Aww, Bert, Bert, Bert...You really shouldn’t have.
N’ustan raises a bent angel blade he seems to pull from mid-air.
Bert’s eyes widen and he screams.
Five minutes later, N’ushtan finishes filling his tank with gas. He slings the limp angel across the back of the cycle. The rest of the gang rumbles on, but N’ushtan lights a cigarette. He takes a long draw on it and then tosses it at an intentional puddle of gasoline he left.
The gasoline ignites, and creeps its fire toward the tanks.
N’ushtan kicks his motorcycle into gear and roars toward the town square. A hot explosion warms his back and the clatter of torn sheet metal landing across concrete shivers his back in ecstasy.
The other bikers already circle the courthouse square. The woman named Ash holds a large wooden railway gate pole over her shoulder like a lance. Bull pulls the motorcycle up an embankment near the courthouse’s flagpole, and Ash hops off in her nimble way. She chants a few ancient words and a hole opens in the grassy spot in front of the flagpole.
N’ushtan rides his cycle up the embankment to meet her. He parks his motorcycle and tosses Raguel down into the darkened hole. He stares into the pitch black for a moment before stepping back and eyeing Ash’s sleek form.
Ash plants her pole deep into the formed hole, piercing the angel. A blast of light shines up from below and all the demons lift a hand to shield their eyes. The ground returns together around the planted railway gate pole. Ash jumps onto the back of Bull’s motorcycle. They share a sloppy kiss, and the other members circle around the pole, tearing ruts into the manicured courtyard lawn of the town square. The women shake their cans of red spray paint and coat the pole. N’ushtan joins them.
Makah tosses a black can into his hand as he steps toward the pole. N’ushtan begins drawing a nude woman and seven sigils above and below her. He steps back to admire the dripping art.
Ash winks and runs a hand through her red yarn hair as Bull wheels by: Looks just like me, N’ush!
Bull cuts his eyes at N’ushtan, but his relaxed demeanor shows indifference.
Makah raises her capped beer bottle. The blue grace glows fiercely against the dark. She draws a knife from her belt and slices her palm. Then she twists off the cap to the bottle and drips her blood into it. Her wound closes and heals fast as she passes the knife to another one of the company.
One by one, each demon drips their blood into the bottle, Makah swirls it around. The grace’s clear blue shows up now as a dim murky purple.
She turns to N’ushtan who shakes his spray can again.
N’ushtan sprays four sigils at the base of the pole, one in each direction: Death.
The other eight chant: Death!
Makah sprinkles the grace and blood mixture on the pole.
N’ushtan: Death to any who touch this shrine to Ashtoreth!
The other demons chant: Death!
Makah splashes the base of the pole again.
N’ushtan grabs a length of rope from the side of his motorcycle and winds a lasso in his right hand. He tosses it around the top of the pole, then cinches it. The bottom section he knots into a noose to hang just above head level.
Makah sprinkles the remainder of the grace and blood over the rope
N’ushtan: Asherah claims all souls here bound.
Ash’s face twists into a grin and she leaps to her feet, balancing against Bull’s shoulders while he wheels around: Aww, thanks guys. You shouldn’t have!
N’ushtan climbs back onto his bike: It’s your lucky day, baby.
They hoot and holler and shake their fists at the skies. All nine ride the main road through town back and forth innumerable times, then finally head out to their cave just outside of town.
Title Credit: The Sockchester Brothers’ Socknatural
Sock Sam: Cass? You seem pretty quiet back there. You want to fill us in on where we’ll find these original demons in Truth or Consequences?
Sock Dean raises a finger from the steering wheel: Weirdest name for a town I’ve ever heard.
Sock Cass: I’m not able to know ex --
Sock Cass pauses when he sees a glimmer shining off the edge of one of the distant gray hills. It looks like some tumbleweeds or scrub is burning, but there is no smoke rising.
Sock Sam squints: Is that bush on fire?
Sock Cass sits forward: That’s for me. I will meet you at the Big Foot in Elephant Butte.
Sock Dean: The what?
Sock Cass disappears from the backseat of The Cardboard Impala ™.
Sock Dean: I think we need to handle this problem and get out of here fast. I don’t feel good about this place, Sammy.
Sock Sam: Well, it’s the kind of demons who have to be stabbed a lot before they die. Not likely a milk run.
Sock Dean: Yeah, and did you notice how Cass has been sort of vague on the details here. All we know is it’s an original demon problem. No clue on how many, or what they’ve been up to.
Sock Sam lifts his iPad: Well, that’s why I’ve been doing research. So get this. There’s a sort of hanging tree set up in the center of town that has residents scared out of their wits. The town mayor claims she’s seen the noose grab people going by it and hang them until they’re dead. There’s been three deaths already. The courthouse custodian, the mayor’s husband, and a police deputy. They’ve blocked it off, but people are scared, man. It seems like anybody who gets close to it gets strung up.
Sock Dean: So what do you think? That sounds like a ghost rather than demons.
Sock Sam: If this was a usual case I’d say the same, but Cass said demons and here we are.
Sock Dean turns The Cardboard Impala ™ toward the town square and parks in front of the tan adobe-style courthouse. Few people pass on the streets. Those that do, keep one eye on the area before the flagpole and hurry on to their business.
Sock Dean: This place seem a little dead to you?
Sock Sam makes sure his gun is tucked in his jeans under his shirt and climbs out of the car. He surveys the area and finally spots the yellow crime scene tape fluttering like wounded butterfly wings.
Sock Sam: Yeah. Hey, do you smell that?
Sock Dean frowns at his brother: What?
Sock Sam swallows hard to keep his mouth from watering: Uh, nothing, must be sulphur, right?
Sock Dean dips his chin and rolls his eyes: That would make sense if it’s demons, genius.
As Sock Sam and Sock Dean approach, the black sigils marked into the grass like a brand become clearer. Then they see the entire pole and noose hanging from it.
Sock Sam points over the crime scene tape: Woah. Are those burnt angel wings?
Sock Dean follows Sock Sam’s felt finger to the base of the red pole. The scorched shape of dark feathered wings encircle and rise, twisting around the base until the final wingtips reach in a futile gesture toward Heaven.
Sock Dean gestures to the body of the pole: I was distracted by the uh, busty beauty there. Who knew demons know how to draw, huh?
Sock Sam nods at the purple-black speckles all over the base of the pole, noose and surrounding area.
Sock Sam: Looks like some heavy duty spells were done here. Check out those sigils on the pole too.
Sock Dean shakes his head and backs away: I don’t like it. A possessed pole with a freaking angel pinned under it gives me the creeps.
Sock Sam balls up his fists and glances around the square: Look, I need a drink, I don’t feel very well this close to all...that, right now.
Sock Sam’s eyes dart at the purple splotches and then to Sock Dean for an appeal.
Sock Dean slaps Sock Sam’s arm: Sure, maybe we can find some people in town or Cass can clue us in.
They hustle toward a weathered sign that says Hanes Bar & Grill. Neon beer logos hang lit in the windows, despite the early evening sun still illuminating the storefront. Sock Dean pushes the squealing saloon doors open and holds them a moment more for Sock Sam to duck in.
Sock Dean: Well, here they are.
The bar is bustling with after work activity. Two men wearing dress shirts with their ties tossed over the side of a chair discussed the damage done to a railroad crossing gate while sipping from foam-speckled glass mugs and shooting pool. Behind them sits an old jukebox cranking out a few hit songs from the 60’s.
Three people sit at the barstools. An old man stares at them under the brim of his hat from the bar, the other two are engrossed in their phones. In the center of the bar is a gigantic floor to ceiling fish tank.
Sock Sam cannot resist the pull and presses his face against the glass. His eyes dart from fish to fish.
Sock Sam: Look Dean! It’s full of sea monkeys!
Sock Dean: All I see is the need for extra tartar sauce.
Sock Sam chuckles and slaps his brother’s leather jacket: Looks like there’s a spot at the bar.
They settle onto wobbly stools. The bartender sets a round in front of them and nods with his broken nose.
Bartender: First one is on the house. You two look new to these parts. My name’s Harry Hanes, I own this place.
Sock Dean tosses back his drink: Just admiring your sock monkeys over there.
Sock Sam: Sea monkeys.
Sock Dean: Yeah, whatever. They don’t look like a sea monkey family to me. Where’s the sea monkey wife and the pot roast and the sea monkey kids and dog and sea monkey castle?
Sock Sam: Dean!
Harry: Ha, yeah. The tank usually gets a good look. Only place around for a hundred miles with a thousand gallon fish tank, though. I should probably get some more exotic fish, or sockeye salmon or something, but they’ll eat all the sea monkeys.
Sock Dean: Right, well. I’ll take whiskey. You can go ahead and leave the bottle.
Harry raises his eyebrows, but Sock Dean produces a bill with a large enough number on the corner to put the easy smile back on the bartender’s rough face.
The older man beside Sock Sam turns to them and sets his sharp western hat on the bar beside him: So I take it you boys ain’t from around here.
Sock Sam: Nope.
The man nods: Well, before you get too comfortable, you ought to know our town law.
Sock Dean: Law?
The man sighs: Yep. Just started a few weeks ago. Truth or Consequences.
Sock Dean: That’s the name of this town.
Old man: Yep, that’s right. Now it’s the name of the game too and honesty is the best policy.
Sock Sam scratches his head: So, what? You tell the truth, or there’s consequences?
Old man: There’s a hanging is what there is. You’ve seen our new flagpole?
Sock Dean: The one with the naked chick on it?
The old man laughs: That’s the one. It just showed up one night when that gang came to town just riding their motorbikes and scaring everybody. Didn’t do nothing but the moment Paul the custodian tried to pull it out, the noose came alive and right killed him.
Sock Sam: Because he touched it?
Old man: Because he’s a two-bit liar is more like.
Sock Dean: Do the streetlights flicker around it?
Old man: More like combust. But that’s not the end of it. Couple of days back, Mayor Thompson says from now on, we better speak the truth, because the pole will know. Next day her husband walks out of the general store, two doors over, and somehow that noose grabbed him, dragged him all the way to the pole and hung him dead. Day after that Janice Heeler, she’s one of the police deputies, was cutting him down to bury him and next thing you know she was grabbed. Now nobody knows who’s gonna be next.
Sock Sam and Sock Dean exchange glances.
Old man: Long story short, watch what you say. And get out of town just as soon as you can.
Sock Sam: Thanks for the heads up.
Old man: I just don’t wanna see no more boys strung up on it. Ain’t fair if you don’t know the rules. By the way, the name’s Silas Woolsey.
Sock Dean shakes Silas’s hand: I like your hat, Silas. I’m Dean, that’s my brother Sam. You got any info on that gang of bikers?
Silas: Well, I reckon they reek of sweat, sex, and sulphur, if you’re asking. Come in from the west every couple days and loiter around the pole for a while, then they take off, probably to one of the old tapping caves. It was carved out back in the gold rush days.
Sock Sam: Really? What are they doing there?
Silas: Don’t right know. Sometimes they take a local boy or girl with ‘em. Don’t ever see them again either.
Sock Dean: Wait, you think they’re killing them too?
Silas shakes his head and sips on his scotch: I hope to God not. We’re terrified of that rope as it is. I reckon that’d be the last straw. I have half a mind to take my horses and get out of town anyway.
A low rumble shakes the walls and vibrates the glass bottles behind the bar as motorcycles draw closer to the town square.
Silas grabs his hat and sets it on his head, then buries his neck into his coat.
Sock Dean: I take it that’s them now.
Sock Sam stands and peers through the dusty paned window, resting his arm on the edge of the sill. The men at the pool table let the backdoor slam shut as they leave, the rest of the bar patrons hunker down in their seats like Silas and dart their eyes everywhere.
The jukebox turns its disk to the opening bars of its next hit; "Born to be Piled".
The swinging doors are still for six long moments then they slam apart. Two splinters from the latch hang loose beside the frame as the nine bikers enter the bar. Most of them wear cutoff jean vests emblazoned with skull faced cards. A few women in the group hang off of one or two of the guys, but their hungry eyes spot each available victim in the bar.
The one with the snake entwined around his right arm takes a deep breath and fans himself.
He says: Mmm... That juicy fear is succulent in here. Can you taste it Ash?
Ash peels herself from her man and licks her lips: Absolutely. Oh! Check it out, look! It’s our lucky day! Isn’t that Azazel’s champion?
Sock Sam backs up against the window: Look, we don’t want any trouble.
Ash grins as she steps up and into Sam’s space, toying with the top edge of Sock Sam’s shirt.
She says: Oh, but we do. What do you think, Bull?
She scans Sock Sam from toes to head: You wanna trade...up?
The largest guy, built like an animal, takes a menacing step towards Sam.
Sock Sam swats her hands away but reveals his tattoo: Get away from me. You can’t take me.
Ash cackles touching her finger to her lips as she bends over in laughter: Ah, he’s cute. Thinks some tattoo can keep us from messing with him.
Ash lifts her head and rubs her thumb against the edge of her fingers. There is no noticeable difference, but when she swipes at his chest, the ink smears right off into her fingers.
Sock Dean stands up: Hey! Pull your paws away from him!
Silas cowers deeper into his beaten leather coat.
Ash twists around and taps an inky finger to her bottom lip: Aww! Look N’ush! Your favorite Sockchester! Two for one deal today!
N’ushtan squints and gives a mock bow to Sock Dean. He flexes his arm and his snake tattoo writhes around.
N’ushtan: It is my utter pleasure to meet such a legendary human, uh, as it is said, toe to toe.
Sock Dean slides his hand into his jacket to rest on the angel blade inside: Well, I really can’t say the same about you, snake eyes.
N’ushtan winks at Dean and flicks his wrist. An amber jar rises from behind the bar and whisks into the demon’s hand: I love it when you get all sassy.
He pours Dean a drink and chugs the rest like cool water on a hot day.
N’ushtan spins his hand: You may, of course, bow and adore me. I wouldn’t pass up allowing you the chance to be a vessel of adoration.
Sock Dean’s eyebrows knit as he glares into his glass: I think I’d rather eat a cow pie.
N’ushtan: That can be arranged, you know, puppet.
Sock Dean tightens his grip around the glass. Sammy and him are in deep detergent this time.
Ash pulls off a glove: You know, there’s something I’ve always wondered about you, Sam. Let’s see if the rumors are true.
She scratches her hand and red fuzz beads at the surface of her skin.
Ash moves her bloody, inky hand around, her eyes never leaving Sock Sam’s face. Her lips curl with amusement: Look! This is great! Like a moth to flame…. He can’t help it.
Sock Dean hurls his glass at Ash’s head: Leave him alone!
N’ushtan cuts his eyes back to Dean: Bad dog!
With a single motion, the demon sweeps Sock Dean over the bar and against a wall of glass bottles. Like icicles in winter, the bottles shatter into deadly shards and specks. A glass mosaic wrought of drowned dreams.
Sock Sam: Dean!
Sock Dean drops to his hands and knees. Glass slivers stick to his felt palms.
Sock Sam brushes Ash away from him and moves toward his brother. He socks the one she called Bull, but shakes his hand as all feeling is lost in his fingers from the blow.
Bull responds by slamming him into the fish tank. It shatters.
Sock Sam sits stunned in the center of the aquarium frame, hands settling behind him, the only thing holding him upright. A few sea sock monkeys wriggle around against the jagged shards and bloody red fuzz is dripping from somewhere on him.
Ash sashays back to Sock Sam: Ah! Ah! Ah! We’re only getting started on you, handsome.
Sock Dean leaps from behind the bar, using his momentum to kick at N’ushtan’s face. The startled demon simply turns his face, but Dean is already on the warpath to get to his brother.
Sock Dean draws the angel blade and slices at the throats of two demons and finally plants the blade through Ash’s back into her heart.
Ash turns toward Sock Dean and gives him a once over: Oh, I do love when you’re angry.
Sock Dean makes a motion toward grabbing the angel blade, but pulls his fingers back at Ash’s placid face.
Sock Dean: Well, uh…
Ash winks: Dean, sweetie, do a favor for me, and eat some dirt.
A force slams Sock Dean through the side of the bar window, a neon SOL beer sign and the fragments of the glass window sail with him until he slides onto the gravel parking lot outside. He peels his face from the ground and watches them pile out of the bar and saunter back toward the town square. They drag a large limp figure behind them.
Sock Dean: Sam!
He attempts to rise on his elbows, but the lacerations hurt like nothing else. He winces and grits his teeth through a curse.
The demons sling Sam across the back of one of the motorcycles behind them. It was too hard for Sock Dean to see which one. The rumbles awoke the town again, and Sock Dean staggers to his feet, holding his side.
Two younger-looking demons of the bunch, flip open switchblades and start toward The Cardboard Impala ™.
Sock Dean: Uh uh. No! No! No way!
The sound of hissing air confirms his fears.
He attempts to put one foot in front of the other, but just about kisses the gravel again. The old grizzled hand of Silas holds him upright.
The biker gang thunders off to the west, bearing his brother with them.
Sock Dean: I’m gonna murder them! They’ve got Sam!
Silas: Not in your shape, you ain’t! You need a doctor, boy.
Sock Dean glares at his flat tires: I just need to get to Cass. In the Big Foot. In Jumbo’s Caboose.
Silas: Uh, oh, Elephant Butte?
Sock Dean: Yeah, whatever, do you have some wheels I can borrow?
Silas: Well, not wheels, exactly…
Sock Dean and Silas trot down the main street in Elephant Butte on a pair of chestnut horses. Dean’s lacerated body barely holds on except for vengeance for Sam and Baby, and the pommel he grips between his hands. Sweat sticks to him as the New Mexican sun beats the back of his neck.
Newspapers cover the windows of a downtown two-story building. A portico stretches above the sidewalk to give some shade in the early afternoon hours. An ape cobbled together with paper-mache and bear-fur rises from the top of the portico and bares its hairy chest and arms in a silent scream at the sky.
Sock Dean tries not to imagine the figure looking like his brother, so he points at the statue and chuckles: This it? The Big Foot?
Silas swings down and starts to tie the reins to the closest pillar: Yep. Don’t quite see why you want to go here, there’s a care center just down the block, they could fix you right up.
Sock Dean: Yeah, well, Cass is an angel, so he’ll do all that, and actually be able to help us out with Sammy.
Silas: Uh huh. I think that fall shook a couple lint balls loose up in your noggin. You sure you ain’t a little touched in the head?
Sock Dean: Just… come on.
Sock Dean and Silas step into a restaurant that never left the 70’s. There’s the newspapers covering the windows, plaster molding around the squares in the ceiling, beaten red leather booths, and business cards are slipped under the clear Plexiglas tabletops. Picture frames with Sasquatch sightings cover the walls. An uncomfortably humanoid-looking bust of an ape is mounted over the row of booths. Unfortunately, the creature looms directly above the angel wearing a beige trenchcoat.
The gaze of Sock Cass is focused entirely on the business cards just under the Plexiglas surface.
As Sock Dean nears, the angel straightens and looks around as if remembering where he was.
Sock Dean: You know you can’t actually touch them.
Sock Cass attempts to stand but knocks his head on an overhanging light: Hello, Dean. What happened? Where’s Sam?
The angel glances at Silas, but slides past, as if expecting the second Winchester to be somehow hiding his large frame behind the old man and the triangular beer banners spanning the front doors.
Sock Dean: Hey, we ran into a few demons, they got Sammy. Silas thinks he knows where they might be hanging out.
Silas: Well, it ain't a sure thing. It still might not pan out.
Sock Dean glances at the Sasquatch monstrosity above Castiel’s head and edges to the open side of the booth: Right, so just patch me up and take us over there. I’ve got angel blades.
Silas scratches his head and whistles a cuckoo tone.
Sock Cass’ eyes pierce Sock Dean: I can’t. There’s too much at stake here.
Sock Dean: What? What do you mean?
Sock Cass: I can’t explain it to you, Dean. The demons, they’ve blinded the minds of everyone here so they cannot see the truth. There’s an area of ensorcellment spanning all of Truth or Consequences and most of Elephant Butte. Dean, you’re asking me to walk with you into a lion’s den. Even if I heal you, they’re going to know I’m here. They’ll find us and they outnumber us right now.
Silas glances back and forth: I think both of you are missing a few socks from your laundry load...
Sock Dean: Okay, a straight fight. Bring them on. I feel better about our odds already.
Sock Cass shakes his head and stares at the newsprint: I know it’s difficult to understand, but handling one Original Demon was beyond our ability and you want to invite all nine here, where they already have an advantage. Original Demons, being once angels rather than created by Lucifer out of souls, are stronger and more resilient than even other angels because they feed on human souls. We can’t. It’s suicide.
Sock Dean: Cass, you know I’m not going to walk away. They took Sam and they messed with Baby. If you can’t help, I’ll go get him by myself.
He rises from the table, but Sock Cass puts his hand on Dean’s shoulder: I won’t let you do that alone, Dean. We can’t take them all, but perhaps we can tempt them out one by one.
Sock Dean narrows his button eyes: With what?
Sock Cass gazes at Silas: Bait.
Sock Sam wakes slowly, his lips feel sticky, like when he was young and fell asleep while eating mac and cheese, trying to keep awake and hear the familiar growl of Dad’s Cardboard Impala returning to the motel room. He tries to lick them. Pie filling? Some kind of rusty water? No. Sock Sam realizes it tastes like blood and freezes. Sam wipes his face against his sleeve. Red fuzz coats the lower half of his sleeve.
Sock Sam stumbles to his feet and presses his hand against his head. The cuts from the aquarium glass are slowly scabbing together on his cotton fibers. His feet wobble over the darkened broken stones of the cave. Sock Sam reaches before him, as he tries to see obstacles in the dim light. He finally reaches a larger cave with a bright opening to the world just beyond. Blinded by his focus, Sock Sam misses the company of demons whispering, mocking, and cajoling a youth; their latest victim.
Sock Sam froze, his eyes caught the boy’s, whose flick to the door.
N’ushtan: Okay Jordan, tell us when it hurts.
The demon slides an angel blade with a bent edge into the teen’s side. The boy grunts, but nothing more escapes his lips.
Sock Sam: Hey! Get away from him!
The demons turn as one.
Ash: He awakens! How are you feeling, Sam? Hungry?
Sock Sam backs toward the door, but the demons only watch.
N’ushtan turns the blade in the teen’s side.
The boy stares at Sam. His eyes are intense and resolute. He still makes no sound.
Sock Sam clenches his fists. He couldn’t just leave this kid to these demons, but drawing them away isn’t seeming to work either. None of them seem concerned that he can walk out. As if they knew he’ll always come crawling back.
Ash raises her eyebrow and leans down to a pitcher. In the dim light, the liquid inside looked thick.
She shakes it a little: Time for your next dosage, Sammy, Doctor’s orders.
Sock Sam backs up some more: What did you give me?
Ash sticks her pinky finger in the pitcher and sucks it: One hundred percent grade A demon blood. The real stuff, none of that concentrated crap that’s all watered down with Lucy’s monkey soul business.
Sock Sam: Demon blood? You gave me demon blood?
Ash shrugs: I mean, you sucked down a gallon of it, no problem. I think your body kinda craves it. Not that I care. The nine of us don’t mind sharing a pint with you every couple hours.
Sock Sam sneaks a glance at the boy. He flicks his eyes to the mouth of the cave again. His eyes still shone clear, not even a hint of pity or disgust settle into them.
Ash follows Sam’s eyes: Ah. I see. He’s got feelings for the kiddo. Can’t leave with ‘em, Can’t leave without ‘em. Am I right?
N’ushtan yanks the crooked angel blade out and ran the tip of the blade up the kid’s arm drawing a thin line of blood from armpit to palm.
N’ushtan chuckles: Tell us again, Jordan. How long am I going to take to kill you? Your choice. Get yapping.
Sock Sam starts back to the demons. He heads for the boy, but the demons just part and let him walk through.
Jordan wears a red tracksuit with white lines down the sides. His white-blonde hair sticks to his thin body. A thin sheen of sweat betrays his body’s distress. His lips are still silent, but his eyebrows furrow at Sam.
Sock Sam: Why doesn’t he speak?
N’ushtan turns the crooked angel blade to Sam: Not sure. Why don’t you see if you can get him to spill?
Sock Sam: No!
N’ushtan: Ah, pity. Oh well.
Sock Sam: Wait! Let him go!
The nine demons cackle at this statement.
Jordan’s lips quirk as if he forgot himself momentarily.
Ash sashays back to Sam: How about a deal, then, Sammy-boy?
Sock Sam turns and sets his hand on Jordan’s arm: No. I don’t do demon deals.
Ash dismisses his words with a wave of her hand: Oh no, just a simple act, not your soul. You drink the rest of this pitcher, and we’ll let Jordan and you walk out of here, no questions asked.
Sock Sam shakes his head: No way. I am -never- drinking that stuff again.
Ash shrugs her shoulders: I mean… you already have… so? You’re damaged goods, Sam, why not embrace it? You’ve got some real power flowing through your veins again. You could take your buddy Crowley’s job. King of Hell Sam Winchester. You’d like that, wouldn’t you?
Sock Sam: Yeah, is that so? So what’s to keep me from toasting all of you?
Ash pasted a smile on her face: Ah, well, our kind of demon blood is, uh, more explosive, I suppose. You use it, you lose it all in one shot. So you might get one of us. But…if you drink some more you might get a double kill. So there’s that.
Sock Sam glances at the teen: Fine.
Jordan grasps his arm, his voice was thin like his vocal chords were still in the midst of changing: Don’t. Just go.
Sock Sam tries not to look at the pitcher, nor the eager faces around him. Especially not at Jordan who would probably look disappointed if not disgusted.
As the slick red fuzz slides down his throat he tries not to relish the taste, the blast of euphoric power that buzzes up and down his fingers and toes. As he finishes he fails to keep his tongue from licking his lips, but throws the plastic pitcher at Ash’s feet.
Sock Sam: There.
N’ushtan slivers his eyes, but releases the boy as promised, and pushes him at Sock Sam.
Sam gathers Jordan over his shoulder and stomps out the mouth of the cave.
Ash’s voice echoes in sing-song behind him: See you later.
Outside the cave, five motorcycles are parked under the cliff face. Sage bush and tumbleweeds are tangled beside and the only path Sock Sam can see is the impression of the tires between brush, boulders, and joshua trees. He sets Jordan on the back of a motorcycle, turns the key and nearly kills the engine. He starts it again and manages to keep it going. Jordan loosely holds on around Sam’s middle. Then Sock Sam sets off under the midday sun, wobbling a bit, and then finally clinging to the handlebars in a death grip.
Sock Dean glares across the town square at the angel perching in the bell tower of the courthouse. He straightens the new hat he bought from a souvenir store down the block on his head. He likes the way the brim shades his eyes. A regular Wyatt Earp in an outlaw-run town.
The cuts on his hands and legs hurt, and his body still feels pretty beat, but he pushes past the pain to get through. For Sammy.
He turns back to wave Silas on toward the courthouse as he steps off the boardwalk and hurries to the trunk of The Cardboard Impala ™.
Sock Dean mutters: I have a bad feeling about this.
Sock Dean opens the trunk and props up the weapons box with his shotgun. He replaces his spare angel blade inside his jacket, tucks his gun with a clip of angel-killing bullets into the back of his jeans, and hooks a jug of holy oil to his belt. Sock Dean steps back, mulling over the rest of the items he and Sam picked up throughout the years.
He pulls the never-used crucifix from the lid of the box, and, after hefting it in his hand for a moment, stuffs it in his jeans pocket. Then he grabs a machete and closes the lid.
After closing the trunk and pocketing his keys, Sock Dean returns to the boardwalk. Each step on a board results in a thump three times as loud as his normal step. He lowers his hat over his eyes and slows to a stop near the sheriff's office. Then he rests his back against the shaded wooden wall.
Sock Dean glances again between Sock Cass and Silas who is now well into his first silent circuit around the pole, passing a ram’s horn that Cass brought him from somewhere in the middle east between his hands.
Sock Cass stands at the railing, squinting at the horizon.
By Silas’s sixth circuit, Sock Dean flinches at any sound. The bang of the saloon door. The whip of the flagpoles in the breeze above. Even Castiel’s silent vigil makes him want to tap his foot and pace the boardwalk again, no matter who heard him.
Dean is about to start just that, when Silas starts blowing the horn. At the same time Castiel points to the west. Sock Dean can just see a plume of dust rising behind a throaty motorcycle. Dean slides his machete-wielding hand behind his leg and lowers his hat again.
The motorcycle shakes the town’s window panes, making the beams and frames buzz with its power. It finally rumbles to a jerky stop behind The Cardboard Impala ™.
Sock Dean swipes the brim of his hat up and starts back the way he came, plans swept aside, and firmly in their place lay vengeance.
Silas himself startles and freezes in his cycle around the pole when he sees the figure swing off the seat of the motorcycle.
The sound of wings arrive first
Sock Cass: Sam! How are you free?
Sock Dean gapes at his brother before blinking and slapping his back with a hug: I thought I’d lost you, man.
Sock Sam shakes his head: I really don’t know. They just let me and the kid go.
The teen turns his head at Sam as if to speak up but Cass interrupts.
Sock Cass tilts his head and gives a puzzled look to Sam: That’s highly irregular for them.
Sock Dean turns to the teen who slid off the back of the motorcycle: Kid? Is this your home? Where are your parents?
Jordan clears his throat: This is not my home.
Then he walks with measured steps to the angel: Castiel. Why is that man still circling the Asherah pole?
Sock Dean and Sock Sam trade looks.
Sock Dean: Wait. He knows you?
Sock Sam: Is he an angel?
Sock Cass flies to Silas and leads him back to the group. The old man is shaking. Sock Cass takes the horn from his hand.
Silas: It hasn’t gotten me? It didn’t get me?
Jordan lays a hand on Silas’s shoulder: Don’t be afraid. Courage. Strength.
Silas seems to visibly settle and find some measure of peace.
Sock Cass nods at the boy: Jordan is the captain of the Lord’s army.
Sock Dean starts. He raises his eyebrows, and takes a step back: I thought that was Michael?
Sock Cass shakes his head: Greater.
Sock Dean grips his machete and steps toward Jordan: Okay. So whose side are you on? Free will or angelic hijacking and apocalypse now?
Sock Sam: Dude, I saved him from those demons. I’m just saying, maybe don’t give him the third degree, yet. He could help us.
The boy pierces Sock Dean with his clear, intent eyes as if daring him to come closer. Before Sock Dean can blink the hilt of a golden angel blade as long as a sword rests in Jordan’s fingers.
Jordan: I am on neither side. But I have now come and am willing to help.
Dean shrugs: Okay. Ready to kill demons. Good enough for me. Could’ve picked a better vessel though. Who are you, the karate kid?
A smile touches Jordan’s face, then he turns to Castiel: We have a problem. Sam willingly drank unclean blood again, and lied about it just now. The Asherah pole will come for him next.
Sock Dean turns: Sammy, you didn’t!
Sock Sam peeks at Sock Dean and spreads his hands: Hey, wait a minute. I was saving your life and they’d already given it to me. What was I supposed to do?
Jordan frowns: Perhaps listened to me. I was there to rescue you.
Sock Sam turns his eyes to the ground: I couldn’t just leave a kid there to be tortured.
Jordan squares his shoulders: The ends do not justify the means. A blood sacrifice will need to be made in time.
Sock Dean: I think we ought to worry about demons right now.
Silas nods and tips his hat: I reckon you’re right about that.
Jordan lifts his head as his white-blonde hair glows in the afternoon light and faces Sock Cass: Stay in the city. Keep watch over Sam. I will return when I can.
The boy disappears and Silas jumps.
Silas: Where’d he go? Where’d he go?
Sock Sam turns Silas back toward the town: He flew away. Now, where can we find a place to hole up until the demons come back for us.
Silas points toward his home.
Sock Dean: Lead the way.
* Stay tuned for the thrilling conclusion of "Truth or Consequences"! *
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Sammy and Dean Sockchester created, staged and photographed by Marion.
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