Mandi is up the next morning, the smell of coffee lures her into the kitchen. Rubbing a hand at her crusted eye, she blinks both eyes up and looks around. Bobby is at the sink. “Sam and Dean up?”
“Yeah. Dean's out in the yard working on a car for me and Sam is perched on the porch like a macaw.” She nods, and Bobby gestures toward the coffee. “Do me a favor. Take a cup out of Sam. He likes it three sugars, enough creamer to color it.”
“Alright. No problem.” She goes about making two ups of coffee, about the same as Sam's is. Except five sugars because she can't stand coffee unless it's syrupy sweet. She walks outside with the cup, leaving hers behind. When she gets on the porch, Sam is sitting on the top step, staring out into the yard and Dean isn't that far off. “Sam?” He looks up and over, his eyes squinted because of the sun. “Coffee for you.”
“Thanks,” Sam says, as he takes it. It's quiet for a moment before he speaks again. “Why don't you sit down?”
“Um...sure?,” She asks, blinking. “Let me go get my coffee.”
Thirty seconds later, she's back outside and sits beside Sam. It's almost an awkward silence that pervades, but then it becomes comfortable. She can feel his body heat, and their thighs are almost touching. She's no small girl and Sam is no small guy, so it's understandable. After they listen to Dean pissing around with the car he's working on, cursing every once in awhile, she can't help asking. “What's with the scar on your face?”
Sam looks at her slightly, face unreadable, then shrugs. “It's nothing I really feel like talking about.”
She nods. “Okay.”
“You really remember nothing?,” Sam asks conversationally.
She hates lying. Yes, she can lie quite a lot. Sometimes it's by accident, other times it's on purpose but she hates it. This time she doesn't hate it any less. 'Nothing.” Her hands wrap around her almost too hot cup and she continues watching Dean who seems in rhythm while working on the car.
“I'm sorry,” Sam says softly. “but I'm sure you'll remember in time.”
“Yeah, I'm sure I will,” she says, nodding.
“I'll look around online for missing persons reports. See if anything comes up,” Sam offers, kindly.
“Aww, thanks. You really are precious,” she says, smiling into her cup.
Sam rolls his eyes. “Just trying to help a fellow human.”
“Well, thank you,” she answers, itching to reach over and pat him on the arm but she doesn't.
“Did you wake up here first? Or somewhere else?,” Sam questions.
“Mm, here. I vaguely recall something else, but it's dark,” Mandi says with a shrug.
“Yeah?,” Sam shoots back.
“Yeah,” she says softly. She's starting to feel like a serious ass at this point. “Have you and your brother always been close?”
“Yeah...,” Sam trails off, taking a deep drink from his cup. “It's always just been us, our dad was gone all the time. So, Dean took care of me.”
“Must have been rough,” Mandi says quietly.
“It had it's moments,” Sam admits.
“I know it must have been rough for him but I bet he turned you into a good man,” Mandi says, taking a long pull from her cup.
Sam huffs. “Yeah, you're probably right.”
And five minutes later, into the silence, Dean is calling for Sam to come over to him. “I'm gonna go see what he wants.”
“Okay,” she says, eyes squinting as the sun moves beyond the clouds and Sam puts down his coffee cup to jog over to Dean. Sam smacks his ass as he comes upon him and Dean jumps, cussing Sam out. Which only makes the younger brother laugh. “They're so adorable,” she says to herself, getting up and heading inside.
Just as everyone settles down for the evening, Dean watching television, Bobby and Sam in the study pouring over books and she's in the kitchen, doing dishes and preparing to get out dessert so she can cut everyone a slice of cheesecake. Someone walks in the kitchen behind her, she expects one of the men and someone pokes her side playfully, so she doubly expects Dean for some reason but when she turn she yelps as she sees it's Tifa with a dish in her hand. “Dude! Announce yourself!”
Tifa snickers, which falls into a chuckle. “I'm sorry, darling. I couldn't help myself. Bobby told me put this in the kitchen and when I saw your cute butt, I couldn't help but annoy you.”
Her face heats up but she doesn't blush. “Ha ha. You're so funny.”
“I know I am,” Tifa says, smirking.
Mandi rolls her eyes, suddenly reminded of Dean. “You're lucky you're cute.”
Tifa does blush however. “Flatterer.”
Mandi smirks in return. “Only sometimes.”
“I'm gonna go put this away and go bother Bobby for a little bit, you're more than welcome to come,” Tifa says as she walks over to the fridge and slides it inside next to last night's leftovers.
“What is it?,” Mandi asks, peering inside.
“Lasagna,' Tifa says. “I promise, it's as good as my mama's.”
Just as Mandi is about to make a smart retort, Dean walks in, stopping in his tracks. “Well if it ain't South Dakota's sweetheart.”
“Hey beautiful,” Tifa purrs, walking over to him, taking her fingers and twiddling them in a walk like dance up his chest. “Long time no see.”
“Been too long,” Dean says lowly. “Missed being around you.”
“Missed having you around,” she answers, smiling cheekily.
“So, when are you and me gonna make the bed rock?,” Dean asks, giving a flirtatious smirk.
“What do I always say Dean?,” Tifa says, dropping her hand and putting her hands on her thick but shapely waist.
“Maybe, someday?,” Dean asks with a put.
“Exactly and that day is not today or tomorrow or ever,” Tifa says, rolling her eyes.
Mandi is more than surprised, but also amused by the confrontation. Given she isn't sure if Dean is joking or doesn't mind chubby chasing.
“You wound me, Tif,” Dean says with a sigh.
“You'll get over it,” she says, shrugging her shoulders, then announcing. “Going to find Bobby now.” Then she leaves the room.
“Someones got a serious crush,” Mandi comments, leaning against the sink.
Dean sighs again. “Not gonna lie but I've been carrying a torch for her for awhile.”
“Didn't peg you for someone who likes girls with a little extra,” Mandi says gently, as not to spook him.
“You've seen her, right?,” Dean asks, incredulous, eyebrow quirked.
“Yeah, she's gorgeous. I might have a crush on her too, to be honest,” Mandi says. “Just don't say anything. Most people don't care for the whole homosexuality thing.”
“You're gay?,” Dean asks, hands leaning against the kitchen table.
“i think I'm bi or at least demisexual, I'm voting demisexual,” She answers him as she gets out the cheese cake and sets it on the table.
“What the hell is that?,” Dean questions, looking confused.
“Demisexual is kinda like, before you feel an attraction you have to develop feelings or form a connection,” She explains, getting out plates, forks and a knife.
“So... you don't find me attractive? Because a lot of people do,” Dean says, sounding so sure of himself.
Mandi laughs. “Dean, I admit. You are attractive, like, hella hot but I don't feel like sexually attracted to you.”
'You're weird,” Dean says.
“You wouldn't be the first one to say that,” She murmurs. “Now, I'm guessing your black hole of a stomach brought you in here, so two big pieces of cheesecake for you.” She slides the plate across the table.
“I could totally fall in love with you if you keep spoiling me,” Dean says as he picks up his plate and fork.
“Please don't. My cold, black heart couldn't take the pressure,” She retorts, shaking her head.
“Okay, if you say so, man,” Dean says as he walk out of the room.
“He's weirder than me,” She mutters as she cuts more pieces for everyone else.
She hasn't been on the internet here since she arrived. Bobby let's her use his laptop and she dicks around for a little while in his study chair, going through youtube videos. She wonders if a lot of things are the same, so, she looks up Pewdiepie, Seananners and a bunch of other people she watches on the regular. They're in this universe too but Pewdie is a German guy and Seananners is a chick, who is somehow more wildly popular than the other Seananners. She gets bored at some point after going on three hours, half listening to the men in the other room watching some sport on television and yelling at intervals of disdain or joy.
Then she decides to look up Slenderman. One of her favorite creepypastas. Marble Hornets exists, which isn't all that surprising but the videos that pop up are somehow incredibly different. They're not gamers playing games, but people on news vlogs and missing people's reports. She clicks on the first one, and it's a young woman named Kara, biracial and there's tears in her eyes that she keeps wiping. Mandi turns up the volume to drown out the noises in the other room and listens.
“Okay, so... wow, this is so hard to explain. I doubt anyone will believe me because no one does. They all think I have PTSD and I blocked out what really happened. Andrea and I were in the woods, not far from our camp in the Aeria Woodland Campgrounds. We were just walking, you know? It was late, she had to take a piss and I went with her. Then we decided to walk a little because the moon was full, the stars were bright and the sky was filled with stars. The air was so fresh, I remember it vividly. Anyway... I had my camera and I was filming her, as she talked, my screen started fuzzing a lot. Stsatic. The air shifted, I smelled... I smelled something acrid, sour. I turned my camera and in the static, there's this … this thing. It's in black, with a white face. You have to really look to make it out. Here, I'll show you the video.
the video changes, there's blonde, fair skinned girl walking out in front, laughing as she talks about random things. Why she thinks her crush is afraid of balloons, why she likes melted ice cream and all this other stuff. Mandi can't help thinking they must have been high on something but just as the camera pans suddenly, it becomes staticy and it suddenly stops on a figure in the distance, just standing there. There's definitely a white face, but she can't make out much more than that. After the video pauses, it buzzes out for a moment and when the camera pans back the blonde is gone. “Andrea?,” Kara calls out. As she continues to call, her calls get more frantic, until someone from their camp comes running and she's blubbering mess. The camera ends.
We looked everywhere for her. Everywhere, we couldn't find her. Someone, anyone out there, help me. No one believes me, not a single person. I know whatever that was, took my bestfriend. I want her back. Contact me if you know anything. Anything at all.
The video ends, the girl has tears in her eyes and Mandi suddenly feels a heavy pit in her stomach.
She moves through a few more videos. More missing people, some videos with footage, others without. All campers or people who went into the woods to play around. The comment sections are unforgiving, calling them frauds and attention seekers but she believes them, especially in this world. She isn't sure if she should bring this to the guys' attention just yet because A) it's not in one place, it's all over the United States. B) She needs to... well, research first. Then present evidence of possible hunts.
Can she do it? Is the question.
She gets up, walks over to the archway. “hey! Bobby?”
“Yeah?,' he yells from the other room.
“Do you have a notebook and pen?,” she yells back
“Yeah, plenty. Look inside my desk drawers, there's a bunch of new pens too, got em all on sale,”. He tells her.
“Okay! Thanks!,” she calls back as she walks back into the room.
She finds what she's looking for. A fresh new notebook, a fresh pen and gets to work.
When she's done, she clears her history and goes into the kitchen to read her findings.
She thinks, she'll ask Bobby to train her in becoming a hunter and teach her how to drive.
It'll be something different but she likes different.
It's been two months since Sam and Dean left, since then Bobby has done her the favor of forging birth certificate documents since Sam turned up nothing on missing person's reports. Now she's Mandi Singer, 27, born May 11th and biracial as it should be. He also hooks her up with getting a job at an amazon shipping warehouse in town, restocking shelves but never packaging up items. She'd likely get lost doing it and losing items, which would suck and get her fired asap.
Bobby has also been teaching her how to drive when he's not cooped up in his study and in her free time she researches the missing person's reports involving the Slenderman. She got her own laptop, so she didn't have to keep deleting histogiry and Bobby doesn't suspect a thing...though, however, she feels more and more guilty by the day that she isn't speaking up about who she is. Bobby has been good to her, he's started introducing her as his daughter instead of friend even though people look at him funny. He just goes on to explain he had a one night stand a couple decades ago and leaves it at that.
She gets close plenty of times to spilling the beans, the truth of her existence. She misses her mom like two missing limbs instead of one. She isn't sure how any of this works, but she must be going crazy in her own world, trying to find her. Or another scenario, that makes her scratch her head: she's in a coma and apparently a world full of monsters, with two average joe heroes is her happy place.
Plenty of people are like her in the respect, but all of the, including herself would be crazy to want to be here.
She gets out the ingredients for chili, it's her turn to make dinner. Bobby has his hands full with manning phones, researching for people and taking naps in between. She always wondered how it worked, and apparently it's more difficult and tiring than it looks. She knows Sam and Dean have called a couple times, even throwing a hello her way. She actually misses the guys, they were really nice to her. She's awkard around Sam, probably because of her stupid crush on him even though she reminds herself she really doesn't know him all that well. Fan of a show or not.
Her laptop is on the table, the charger cord across the kitchen plugged in. There's been two new crop ups of Slenderman sightings. She thinks maybe they steal souls or something but they're whisking away people entirely, so that can't be good. She feels like there's something more to it and when she gets a good grasp on what that is, she'll present her findings to Bobby. She gets up to look in the fridge and sees that it's nearly bare. Dean and Sam will be swinging around in a week to stay and lord knows Dean eats Bobby out of house and home. They need restocked, and Sam needs health crap. Not that she minds it as she enjoys healthy food but Sam is finicky sometimes. “Bobby!”
“Yeah?,” he calls from the other room.
“We're pretty much running on empty in the cupboards and fridge. We need a refill, dude,” She yells back.
“We'll go to the store after dinner and get some shopping done. Don't worry about it until then, kiddo,” He says, dismissing her.
“Alright,” she says under her breath as she listens to the hamburger sizzle in the pan and returns to her laptop. She pulls up the youtube window, having messaged a teenage girl named Virginia. She's been waiting for her reply all day, anything to piece together this mystery. Just as she gets a pop up window, there's a knock on the door. She waits a beat, about to open the message when there's yet another knock.
“Mandi. Get that! I'm kinda tied up at the moment,” Bobby says from the other room.
“Gotcha!,” She says, getting up and a little irritated by the interruption.
She makes her way to the door, peering out through the hole to see what looks to be maybe two people. Two women to be exact. She raises her eyebrow because in her two months of being here, she's never really met any of Bobby's neighbors. They seem to keep to themselves, and as Bobby explains it, it's because of his previous reputation as the town drunk. The people that come here are: hunters, his adopted sons and people who need parts and their cars fixed.
When she swings open the door, she squints her dark brown eyes critically, looking for baked goods of casserole dishes, only to find none. So, not neighbors. Maybe people in trouble? She gives a warm smile after a moment. “Um, hey, Bobby is kind of busy. Anything I can help you with?”
The short haired blonde, has vibrant light brown eyes, almost amber in color. She's wearing a cute blue nightgown with yellow ducks all over it and Mandi notes the duck tattoo on her arm. On her rather pretty face is a lost look, that mirrors the pretty long haired brunette beside her. She's in a pair of pajamas, a pair of pretty violet shorts and top, with a big yellow sunflower on the shirt front and little yellow flowers over the shorts.
Both look at each other dumbfounded. The blonde is the first to speak. “Okay, this is gonna sound crazy but hear me out. God, this is so weird...,” she says, trailing off a deep red color to her flushed cheeks.
The brunette takes over. “We don't actually know each other. We both woke up here. We don't know how we got here. We went to sleep and we just... we woke up here,” she stresses, looking panicked.
Mandi blinks, frowning. Sounds exactly like her situation. She looks behind her to make sure Bobby isn't anywhere near by, then looks back at them. “By chance. Are you two fans of Supernatural?”
Both blink. “I am...,” the blonde says a little reluctantly, looking confused.
“Yeah. Me too,” the brunette says, skepticism in her voice.
“Yeah, same here,” Mandi says quietly, the wheels in her head turning.
“What doe that have to do with anything?,” the brunette asks, frowning.
“Well see... I was in your situation about two months and some days ago. I woke up here, in Singer Salvage yard and have been living here since. I haven't exactly told Bobby that I'm from our world. Which I assume your world is my world too,” Mandi tells them seriously. “Anyway, come in. You don't have anywhere to go and looks like I gotta finally tell Bobby I'm not an amnesic.”
“What?,” the brunette asks as she steps over the threshold.
“You're in the world of Supernatural. You know, Sam and Dean. Saving people, hunting things. I know it's a lot to take in but it's the truth. I didn't really believe it at first either,” Mandi goes on to explain as she looks back at the blonde, who is standing in the doorway unsure and with a little red still staining her cheeks. “Come on. Bobby and I don't bite. Promise.”
Mandi leads them into the kitchen, where she gets out the tea pot and finds a half full carton of tea bags. She checks to be sure there's sugar. “Take a seat.”
“So, if you're telling the truth... Where is Bobby?,” the brunette asks.
“In the study. Doing grunt work,” Mandi says with a shrug.
The blonde peers into the hallway, still quiet and reserved. Mandi has always found shy people cute really. It's endearing.
She feels nervous though, she has to confront Bobby at some point. There's no way around it. “Bobby! Could you come here a moment?” She puts the water on the stove.
“Give me a moment!,” Bobby yells.
The brunette purses her lips, looking uncertain. “I feel like I'm in some kind of haze. I had just fallen asleep. Maybe I'm in some kind of strange dream? Or a good dream if Sam and Dean show up.”
Mandi laughs. “They're pretty awesome in person. So yeah, definite good dreams.”
The blonde laughs too. “Though if it were a dream um... why would some random girls we never seen be in it?”
Mandi shrugs. “The mind does weird things, ya know.”
Footsteps come down the hall and both of the new girls faces peer into the hallway. Bobby appears, adjusting his hat, his mouth opens to speak and then closes as he furrows his eyebrow. “... Mind telling me who these young ladies are? Friends of yours?”
Mandi bites down on her bottom lip and sighs. “I've been kind of lying this whole time but hear me... hear us out.”
Bobby doesn't look pissed, just disappointed. Which somehow makes her feel worse. “Alright. Lay it on me.”
“I don't have amnesia. I'm actually from... well an entirely different world than this and so are they,” She explains quietly, hands wanting to grasp something to fiddle and foddle.
“So what? You're a damn alien?,” Bobby asks, eyebrow raising.
“Well, to this world, yes but we're not from outer space if that's what you're thinking,” Mandi says, not meeting his eyes. She kinda feels like she's been bullshiting her own father. Not that she ever cared for her actual one.
The girls have been quiet this whole time, but both of them have deer caught in the headlight looks about them. The blonde speaks. “uh.. Mr. Singer. It's true. I don't know Leigh at all but before we came to your door, we figured out we both went to sleep and woke up here.”
“The same as me, hence the night clothes. I just wasn't sure how to tell you,” Mandi says, still gnawing on her bottom lip.
“We're fans of a show called Supernatural...,” Leigh, the brunette trails off. “It has Dean and Sam Winchester, a few other people like Castiel for example and then there's you.”
Bobby looks thoughtful, the room feels tense and Mandi watches the blonde, whose name she doesn't know yet, looks down at the table, her shoulders a little slumped.
“If you want to kick us out...,” Mandi hedges.
“No, none of that,” Bobby finally says. “I was thinking this is possible because Sam and Dean experienced going to an alternate reality not long ago, where their alternates were actors.”
“The French Mistake,” The brunette says, nodding.
Bobby looks quizzical.
“Name of the episode,” the blonde says when she catches the look.
“It's not exactly the same as the show, guys,” Mandi explains to them. “Think things are happening differently though.”
“Oh,” The blonde says. “That's interesting.”
“Well, you two got names?,” Bobby asks after a few seconds of silence.
“My name is Leigh, Mr. Singer,” the brunette says, giving a bright and bubbly smile.
“Kelsey,” the blonde says, giving a shy, timid smile.
“I'll have to get you beds, but you can stay here until we figure this mess out,” Bobby goes on. “I can only think there's a reason you're here. We need to get to the bottom of it. Now, I gotta get back in there. Mandi is making chili for dinner since it's her turn to cook, and you'll be fed.”
He gives an awkward nod, like he's not sure what to do with suddenly having two more strange women in his home. Mandi can't help thinking he'll get used to them like he got used to her, it'll only take a little time.
Before she can talk to the girls again. He calls from his study. “Call me Bobby! None of that Mr. Singer crap!”
Mandi snorts. “Don't call him Bobberino either. He gave me .. well, he didn't like it.”
“He's... well, he's what I expected but he took the whole other reality thing better than I would have thought,” Leigh says, tilting her head thoughtfully.
“Can you blame him? He's seen a lot of crazy crap, he expects weird stuff like this,” Mandi says, shrugging as the tea kettle goes off. She puts the sugar in the middle of the table, then three coffee cups with spoons in them and the tea bags. She sets the kettle down on a light blue stove topper. “Feel free to use as much sugar as you want, and drink as much tea as you can handle.”
Kelsey nods, then speak as she starts helping herself. “I don't... yeah, I don't blame him at all. Guess we better just be grateful he's okay with all this. The alternative isn't something I'd like to think about.”
“He'll forge you documents and you'll take on the last name Singer. Looks like he's gained two more daughters out of the scenario,” Mandi says, smiling.
“Why … daughters?,” Leigh asks, eyebrow animatedly raised.
“Because well, that's what he tells people I am. He didn't want anyone thinking he was suddenly getting laid by someone much younger than him and he figured it'd just be easier. It is. People don't question it, they just think he had a one night stand or a fling and I was the result,” Mandi explains.
“I'll take it,” Leigh says, smiling into her steaming hot cup. “Suppose I'll need to get a job or something to help out.”
“Same. I can do grunt work and chores around the house?,” Kelsey asks, another stain on her cheeks as she seems uncertain.
Mandi smiles. “I work at an amazon packaging place. Works out pretty well.”
“Do they have Etsy here?,” Leigh asks.
“Yeah, looked on there the other day. It's pretty much the same as it is in our world,” Mandi says, blowing at her tea then taking a drink.
“Then I think I know what I'll do then,” Leigh says, looking thoughtful. “It'll just take some money to get me started.”
“I could help with that. Sure, Bobby would too,” Mandi says adamantly.
“Could you get me a job at the Amazon shipping place?,” Kelsey asks, biting down on her lip.
“I'll see what I can do,” Mandi says, smiling as she wants to reach out and pinch the girl's cute little cheeks.
There's a lapse of silence, that doesn't seem all that awkward as they sip at their tea. Leigh looks around for a moment. “The house is a lot bigger than I expected.”
“I was surprised too. Five bedrooms, Bobby's room. The made up guest room and three unused bedrooms. One's in the attic and it's pretty darn huge. There's a dining room he doesn't use at all except to let a bunch of old dusty tomes take up space since the study is filled with them already. Maybe you could use that for your Etsy projects, Leigh?,” Mandi suggests.
“Think Bobby would care?,” She asks, grinning.
“Probably not. He's pretty chill like that,” Mandi says, winking.
Kelsey sighs. “Wonder what Cas is like.”
“I haven't met him yet. Guess the boys haven't had a reason to have him around,” Mandi says, sipping her tea. “Oh! They'll be here in a week or so. Bobby and I are going shopping tonight so we're stocked on food. Would you guys want to come with?”
“I think... I'll stay here and rifle through all his lore books if he doesn't care too much. I'd like to know what's out there, much as it scares me to look, I want to be prepared,” Leigh admits, nodding her head determinedly.
“Haven't run into anything supernatural yet .. but...,” she trails off, deciding to keep that to herself until shes' sure. “Anyway. What about you Kelsey?”
“I wouldn't mind at all,” Kelsey says quietly. “But what about clothes? Or shoes for that matter?”
“Oh god, good point. Let me see your feetsies,” Mandi says looking down.
Kelsey sticks out her feet, they're small but doable. “have anything in my size?”
“You can wear a pair of mine, and we'll go get you some clothes at the K-Mart. I have enough saved up for that. We'll get you some stuff too , Leigh,” Mandi tells her. “Just gotta tell me your size and your style.”
“I'll write it down,” Leigh says, bouncing in her seat. “Is it weird that I'm excited and scared to be here?”
“Won't you miss your friends and family?,” Kelsey asks quietly. “I know I will, especially my bestie.”
“Of course, but this is a new experience and an adventure waiting to happen. There's gotta be a reason we're here,” Leigh says, shrugging her shoulders, face bright. “I'm sure Bobby will find us a way back eventually.”
Mandi wants to go back, she misses her mom so much, but she's grown to like life here. It's simple, she actually loves it and it really isn't so bad. She doesn't know what she'll do when presented with going home. “Shit! The hamburger!” She runs to the stove and starts stirring it around and making sure it hasn't become charred in the process.
“I'll cook tomorrow. Do you think....?,” Leigh trails off.
“He won't mind. Honest. He's chill and would appreciate it,” Mandi says, knowing she'd appreciate too. Much as cooking can be nice, she doesn't like doing it all that much unless she's trying out a new recipe.
Before dinner, they talk about the show, parts they like about it and what will interest them here. Bobby comes in once the Chili is finished and they all sit around eating while he regales them with tales of his hunting experiences. He shows them scars, talks about Rufus but everyone avoids talk about his late wife. They know better than that.
They go to the grocery store, end up with two buggies filled with everything imaginable. Bobby gets a lot of work done in the salvage yard, meaning he can afford a whole hell of a lot, he also has inheritance money from a late Uncle out of state. Mandi pitches in despite that or she'd feel wrong about living under his roof. Soon as they finish, they head home and put everything away. Kelsey and her check in on Leigh before walking out again. The young woman was in the middle of a book, laying back on the study couch, humming to herself. They told her they were heading out again and would be back in a little while.
When they get into K-Mart. Bobby hands over five hundred dollars in cash and Mandi puts up five hundred as well. She gives Kelsey five hundred and uses the other half for Leigh. As they walk, Kelsey is quiet, and Mandi tries to get her to talk. She answers, quietly telling her about her life back home in Canada. She doesn't mind at all, she likes getting to know people. They move from rack to rack with both their buggies, as she reminds Kelsey to grab shoes definitely and Pajamas if she wants. Whatever else she may need. They agree to meet at register nine where one of the registers are open and part ways.
She grabs some feminine, cute clothes for Leigh. A imitation red leather jacket, flared jeans, the whole nine. Dresses and skirts. She sees a few things she likes herself, and dips into her own funds to grab them. She plans on losing the pudge since she plans to learn how to hunt and make herself useful that way. She can't be out of shape and do it, there's no possible way. Basically she doesn't want to buy a ton of clothes for herself when she'll be buying new ones not long from now.
She picks up make up, hair products and shoes for Leigh. She promised her at least four hundred dollars for craft supplies, which Bobby promised he take her to get tomorrow, along with getting them beds. By the time shopping is done, she's bug out tired and ready to collape when she sees Tifa heading her way. She instantly feels a flutter in her stomach and smiles, waving. “Hey!”
“Hey, sugar,” Tifa says, sultry. “Nice seeing you again.”
“You too,” Mandi says, nodding.
“What are you doing here? With Uncle Bobby?,” She questions, pushing a blonde wavy curl behind her delicate ear.
“Yeah, and getting some stuff,” Mandi says, blushing a little. Her crush might have gotten a little out of hand.
Tifa just smiles. “Well, okay. You tell him I said hi and I'll be over for Sunday dinner when the boys are there.”
“Yeah, no problem,” Mandi says quietly, swallowing as Tifa walks away. “I am so screwed. She's probably straight as an arrow.”
Two minutes later she meets up with Kelsey and they pay for their purchases, going out to the truck.
She begins to wonder why they're all here and for what purpose. There's no way some random mystical force decided ”Hey, we'll take these women and place them somewhere …” her thoughts trail off, but it's true at any rate. Why are they here?
Reading books is something she loves to do, she'll read practically anything if you put it in front of her and reading books that are supernatural in nature? True to form instead of being non-reality? She can't help thinking how incredibly cool that really is. She lays back on the couch, reading about Flaming Teeth. How is that even a thing? The supernatural world has really strange monsters and she wonders if it's possible, that not all of it's true. Then again, who in their right mind would believe werewolves or vampires are real? Let alone some kind of diseases. No one would even imagine they'd be anything but the classic versions.
Eitherway, it's interesting so far.
The house is silent and she doesn't mind it, but she's in a strange new place even if she has seen it on the tv before. This isn't her world, this isn't her house. She's a stranger here, and she's going to be living on the generosity of an older man, who is lovable if the show gave any indication to that. It's certainly exciting, but she's actually really scared. As she reads this book in her hand, the Book of Sprites and Monsters, it's creeping along her spine how much she knows what's out there, lurking in the shadows. Her mind drifts to the fact that she'd like Bobby to teach her how to use a gun and all the hunter tricks. She doesn't want to actively hunt, she doesn't think she'd be any good at that but she can at least protect herself and maybe others if it comes down to it.
She looks at the clock above the desk and sees that it's a little past ten o'clock, and wonders where everyone is. She knows shopping takes more than just picking out clothes, there's the matching, comparing sizes and checking prices. Most people that don't shop either know that and don't want to shop or don't know and don't care. She's the type who loves it and does care. Part of her wanted to go tonight but the fact that she has access to some truths of this world, she couldn't pass up.
Just as she gets to a page about Parras, whatever those are, a phone rings in the house. She sits up slowly. Looking around. “... Doesn't he have six phones?,” she questions to herself out loud. There's phones for different divisions, and then he should have a house phone. She swings her legs over the couch and stands up. She follows the noise of the phone into the living room and sees a cordless phone sitting on the end table, the source of her interruption.
Should she answer? She stares at the phone a moment longer, it's on the fifth ring and she quickly snatches it up, pressing talk. “Hello?”
“Yeah, hello?,” Dean's voice comes across the line.
Holyshit! Dean. She blinks. “Can I ask who's calling?,” She asks, despite knowing exactly who it is. She feels kind of stupid really.
There's a moment of silence, before he speaks. “Do I have the right number?”
“Depends. Are you calling for Bobby Singer?,” She asks, trying to remain cool.
“Yeah, I am but who the hell am I talking to?,” Dean asks, voice suspicious.
“Um...,” Leigh trails off, thinking of how to respond. “Do you have a message for him?”
“Is this Mandi? You sound different, kid,” Dean continues.
“No, not Mandi,” Leigh says, nervousness seeping into her system.
“Okay. Don't want to tell me who you are, that's alright then,” Dean says, still sounding suspicious. “But yeah, got a message for Bobby. Tell him Dean Called. It's important that he call me ASAP.”
She suddenly wants to keep him on the line. “Are you calling about a hunt? Maybe I could help you?”
It's quiet for a few seconds, there's someone in the background talking and she can only assume it's Sam. “Well, I'm guessing you're a hunter too?”
“No, not a hunter,” she admits, shrugging her shoulders even though he can't see.
“Do you know anything about the supernatural world?,” He hedges.
“I'm learning,” She says.
“Alright. My brother and I are hunting something called a Parra, we're not sure what it is and we don't know how to kill it. Think you could get that information to us?,” Dean asks.
“Sure. I was actually about to read about them. I'll read and you can call back in about twenty minutes? That sound good?,” Leigh asks, biting down on her lower lip a little.
“Sure thing, man,” Dean says and hangs up.
“Rude,” Leigh says at the dial tone, but she's smiling.
She takes the phone with her and walks into the study, laying the phone beside her and picking up the book again. As she reads she learns that Parras are indigenous to Spain and Mexico, they're vine monsters who's vines are extremely strong, they can gut people or slice them up rather well and they're very dangerous. Getting in it's hold means death as it has the grip of an Anaconda, only twice that strength. It has the face of a beautiful woman, surrounded by many vines. If you manage to kill it, it'll give you a vision of the future. Killing it comes in only one way, it is susceptible to fire, but they must be drenched in Holy oil. A Tip comes from the fact if you place the holy oil in old bottles to make a cocktail, it should work pretty well.
It's actually a much longer read, with details dating back to the tenth century about their origins but that's not what the boys need to know., She waits quietly for the call, she thinks of his voice. How rough, low and deep it sounded. She's a fangirl at heart but hearing something like that in person, up close is a whole different scenario. The phone finally rings two minutes later. “Dean?”
“Yeah, it's me. Did you find anything?,” He asks as the television drones in the background.
“Yeah, I did actually,” She says, then runs down the line about what she found out.
“Thanks and tell Bobby I called anyway,” Dean tells her.
“No problem!,” She says, voice chipper.
“Am I gonna get a name out of you?,” Dean asks, smile in his voice.
“Uh... Leigh,” She says after a beat. “My name is Leigh.”
“Pleasure meeting you, Leigh,” he purrs in a low timbre.
She feels a shiver up her spine. “You too.”
“Alright, better go. Need some zzz's,” Dean explains away.
“You sleep well,” She says, smiling.
“I will,” Dean says. “Bye.”
“Bye,” She hangs up the phone, and sits there for a few moments. She can hardly wait to meet him. She bets he's even more handsome in person, but what's more important is she wants to see who he is.
As she returns to the book, she hears the door open and the sound of bags being carried in. She shuts the book and places it on the study end table. She gets up and walks into the hallway where she sees Kelsey and Mandi. “How'd it go?”
“Good. Hoping I got what your style entails! If not, we can always go to the store, return things and you can come with,” Mandi says, smiling as she carries the bags into the living room.
“That sounds like a good idea,” Leigh says as she follows.
Kelsey follows in, placing her bags down on one end of the couch. Bobby follows in a few seconds later, placing bags on the floor. “Leigh. Me and the girls were talking. I'm gonna get some documents going in the next couple of days, meaning you'll have identities in my world. You can choose whatever last name you want, but I'd prefer if you choose Singer so I can claim you as my kids and no one thinks I'm gathering a harem for myself. Usually I don't give a flying crap about those things but I don't want to lose respect or business.”
Leigh nods. “I have no problem with that, Mr... I mean, Bobby.”
“Good. Let's get you all settled and then you can go to bed whenever you want in the room upstairs. I promise tomorrow we'll go get your craft supplies and I'll get you beds and a few odds and ends for the rooms,” Bobby continues. “Includes you too, Mandi. Bout time we got you a bed. But it'll mean one of you has to share.”
Kelsey smiles shyly. “I don't mind sharing.”
“I don't mind either but what about the attic room?,” Mandi asks.
“Ah, crap. Completely forgot about that but sure, a lot of space, which all the rooms have but you can do whatever you want with it,” Bobby goes on to say. “You can do whatever you want with any of the rooms. Just don't paint them dark or weird colors. All I ask.”
“Thank you,” Kelsey says quietly as she moves forward, like she might hug Bobby but stops short, blushing.
“You're welcome, kid,” Bobby says, nodding as he leaves the room.
“Dessert is ice cream and pie if you guys are interested, but I imagine before that you want to look through your bags,” Mandi says as she looks through the bags, gathering up Leigh's things and handing them to her.
“Thanks,” Leigh says with a nod, taking the bags. Grateful. She already feels at home here, she never figured Bobby would be so nice about things. He seems lovable but grouchy too. “And I'd love some cream and pie.”
“Alright, whenever you guys are finished,” Mandi says as she leaves the room.
Leigh turns to look at Kelsey. “You holding up okay?”
Kelsey nods. “I'm fine. Just... it's hard to take in. Much as I'd enjoy meeting everyone in person, I kinda really want to be home too.”
Leigh nods. “Of course, sweetie. I feel the same, sorta,” she says. “I”m going to head upstairs and look through this stuff. I'll see you soon.”
“Okay,” Kelsey says as she sits on the couch and starts pulling bags to her.
Leigh heads up the stairs, the bags heavy in her hands as she looks from room to room. Finding two empty ones, one with a queen size bed which must be Bobby's and another with two full beds. It's a big room, but the beds are taking up a hell of a lot of space. She sits on the one by the window and wonders if this is where Dean sleeps. “Oh god, snap out of it Leigh and stop being such a fangirl. These are real people now. Treat them as such and enjoy that fact that you have a bed to sleep in.” She shakes her head, not disgusted with herself or anything, just feeling a little dumb.
Just as she's about to lay back, she sits up and walks to the top of the stairs. “Bobby!”
“Yeah?,” he calls up.
“Dean called!,” Leigh yells back.
“Alright! Thanks!,” He yells.
She goes back to the room and lays back on the bed, staring up at the ceiling, wondering what the future holds.
Dean doesn't feel like he got enough sleep last night. He woke up on the wrong side of the bed and feels like hell. He knows he's being grumpy and Sam doesn't deserve that but he just doesn't want to talk right now. Just wants to get on with the hunt and get it over with. They've been researching this thing for three days, with no possible outcome in sight until they called Bobby last night. Well, called Bobby and got some random woman on the phone. She had been helpful, and confirmed what one lore site had said about the creature they were hunting. Now it came down to crossing fingers and hoping for it to work. If it didn't? He'd shoot the damn thing until it got tired of it and strangled itself. Whatever got the job done.
But the woman... he couldn't quite put his finger on it, but he felt like... yeah, that was stupid wasn't it? He couldn't really explain it, the best term he had for it was a sense of familiarity. He knew she wasn't some crazy demon because Bobby called back to see what he wanted and he'd been perfectly fine. He felt like she had been playing some sort of game too, but that wasn't right either. He had shaken off the feeling and went to bed, having cleared his mind and fell asleep no more than ten minutes later. But today, three hours into being up, taken a shower, having breakfast and watching some Saturday morning cartoons? He thought of her again. He never really paid much attention to a woman, unless they were memorable chicks in eating and drinking establishments or one night stands he couldn't forget. Sure, the woman he spoke to last night had a sexy ass voice but he never really thought about it beyond... nothing.
“Earth to Dean,” Sam said from the driver's seat, hands on the wheel. Dean didn't feel like driving today, neither had Sam but they did rock, paper, scissors and by some miraculous fate, he actually won it fair and square. Long as Sam didn't scratch the paint on Baby, or get them tossed and turned on the highway into a ditch, he trusted his brother to keep them self.
He turned his head a little. “Sorry, Sam. Kind of zoned out.”
“So, I noted,” Sam says as they draw closer to the forest. “Any idea what we do if we get there and the Parra has moved locations?”
Dean's brows turned down thoughtfully. “We'll figure something out but I doubt it's moved. We just might have to split up and cover a hell of a lot more ground than we anticipated. Meaning we'll both have to take a few cocktails a piece and have at it.”
“I really don't want us to split up, if the lore is right we need to stick together,” Sam says turning into the trail and continuing up a one way path into the forest.
“I trust we'll be fine, Sam. If you find it,just call for me and I'll come running. I'll do the same if I find it,” Dean says as they stop by a cluster of trees and Sam shuts the car off.
Sam sighs. “Usually I'd argue with you but....”
“This place is huge and we have no choice?,” Dean says as he gets out and grabs the backpack from floor.
“Yeah, pretty much,” Sam says in a slight huff as he reaches behind him and grabs his own.
They come to stand beside the Impala. “I'll take north.”
“Got west. Meet back here an a hour,” Sam says as he walks off.
“Remember! Yell for me,” Dean says with as he ventures in between the trees.
“I know, Dean,” Sam says, almost like an annoyed teenager, his voice far off.
Moving deep into the land, the forest is eerie and quiet. He listens to every snap of twig underneath his feet, every call in the distance from a bird or squirrel. There are no grunting bears so far, but he doesn't suspect he'll come across any in his path.
Eitherway, as he moves deeper and deeper inside, looking back to see the Impala has disappeared beyond the trees and bushes, he doesn't like the feeling. He should be used to this kind of stuff by now, but still, even in his prime and all the times he's faced down the enemy, there's still that feeling of uncomfortable in the face of the mystical and supernatural. Never scared, no, he learned to stop being scared when he was twelve and faced down his first ghost and grave digging.
'You've come for me.'
He stops dead in his tracks, in a clearing, dead stare of a gaze looking around slowly. He doesn't speak, just waits.
'I should fight you but what's to come is greater than I am.'
“Are you the Parra?,” He asks, voice loud and gravel clear.
'I have many names, but yes, that I am.'
“So, you won't fight. That's good,” Dean says, voice steady. He lives for the fight, but there's another hunt near the Dakotas before they head to Bobby's and he wants to be on his way to that.
'I am not the cause of the disappearances and deaths but you need to kill me.'
Dean blinked. “What is then?”
'They would destroy you and I both if I were to speak of it to you. You must instead see.'
“Oh, great. Plant monsters that like speaking in riddles,” Dean says sarcastically. “You going to tell me or keep talking?”
'I am no monster.'
He rolled his eyes. “Sorry for hurting your delicate feelings.” His stance stood.
Dean turned his head and saw something out of the corner of his eye. He moved quickly, cocktail prepared, just incase it was lying about fighting. He should call out for Sam, but he figured he coul handle this on his own. He's fought worse and gone down for worse. His eyes caught sight of thick ash green vines trickling down from two trees in the clearing. They slithered together like snakes, tangling and building like an empire, it reminded Dean briefly of dry leeches. Then the Parra formed it's body, feminine in appearance, hour glass figure, and the face that came about was timeless, ageless beauty but the eyes were closed. He would definitely do it, if you know, it were human.
'Destroy me and see.'
Dean was getting ready to light the cocktail on fire and throw but stopped himself, hesitant. “Why do you want to die so badly?” Sure, it wasn't a woman, but something that actually wanted to die? There had to be a catch.
'I told you, Dean Winchester. What is to come is greater than me. I have lived centuries. I have seen so much. I have seen enough. I do not mind dying for a greater purpose.'
Dean frowned. He didn't know why, but he felt sympathy for the monster and her dying would only serve to protect others from her. Though if she wasn't a monster like she was saying...
'Do not hesitate, Dean Winchester. If you come across my kind again, know we do not harm, we protect the forest and all of nature's creatures. We only attack if given a reason to. Now, destroy me and see.'
Dean stared at the creature for a tick, then took the zippo out of his pocket and lit the cloth on the cocktail. It flared and then without another moment to go on, he threw it as hard as he could at the Parra and it ignited her middle into flames.
She cried out in anguish, but spoke again. 'Keep going.'
He kneeled down and took out the other two bottles, lighting one on fire and throwing it at her legs, she cried out once again. Her anguish deafening in the forest. Where she had only been speaking what appeared to be mentally before, now it was vocal.
Dean took the second bottle and threw it at her face.
'See!' This one was less calm, it sounded like a a hundred voices in one and was filled wth agony.
Dean stared as she went up in flames, watching as she burned, crackling, turning charcoal. He was confused on what she wanted him to see, until it hit him like a ton of bricks. His vision blurred and he fell on his knees hard, it felt like something almost cracked in the left and his head suddenly ached beyond measure. His hands went to head and he cried out, both their cries mixing together now.
Then he saw.
White faces surrounded him, their black bodies like inky vines curling around him. He wanted to cry out but he couldn't, they wouldn't allow it. They wouldn't falter. Their tendrils are cold, shockingly cold and his teeth chatter. Then he feels it, it's ripping from inside him, something is tearing him apart. It feels like the hooks and chains of hell all over again, only a thousand times worse.
There is nothing now. Only black and darkness he becomes.
He's laying on his side, curled into a fetal position but the vision doesn't stop.
There's screaming, so much screaming. The fear of the darkness is great, he can feel it creeping up his spine, attaching itself and he's changed. He's no longer him. He is nothing but a puppet. He kills his brother, his sister, his mother, his father and the one that gets him the most, when he's trapped inside his head, when he can't stop: he strangles his two month old baby sister in her crib. All he wants is to die then but he can't. It's not done.
Dean chokes on his own spit, keening in pain. The Parra's anguished cries are distant, trivial suddenly in comparison to his own pain. The vision doesn't stop.
'He's so fucking scared. He can't do this. What was he thinking? This was a mistake.
“Dean. Come on, put your hand, right here,” She says, taking his calloused hand in her soft, smaller one and placing it just a little underneath her stomach.
God, he loves her, he almost loves it but he can't do this. He'll screw it up.
You raised Sam up alright, his mind whispers.
Yeah, and look how that turned out.
“See, he's kicking,” She says, and her smile is bright.
And she is. Her little foot is moving underneath his hand, responding to his touch. It gives him a strange feeling, something between pride and fear. He knows it's a she, but he can't say it out loud. Not yet. “Why are you so sure it's a he?”
“Maternal Instinct?,” She says with a light laugh.
He almost smiles.
He can't do this.
“Dean! Dean!,” Sam's voice comes through the fog, it's alarmed, filled with fear and stress.
He coughs, feels like he's hacking up a lung as he tries to get his breathing under control. The headache ebbs away, he almost feels normal besides the punch drunk feeling he has in his stomach. “Shit,” he says, voice full of gravel and glass.
“What happened?,” Sam asks, helping him sit up. Dean is suddenly aware of how much bigger his little brother is compared to him, sometimes he always is. He remembers raising him from infancy, to the young man that left for college and decided to never look back. Leaving him behind. He doesn't know if he can do that again.
What the hell is he thinking? It was just...
“I killed the Parra. Bitch talked in circles,” Dean huffs out, closing and opening his eyes as he blinks away his blurry vision.
“And?,” Sam asks, eyebrow raised. “Did she hurt you? You okay?”
“I don't know, man. I had... I had a bunch of visions. Like that chick said one of us would,” Dean says, pushing to stand up and swaying on his feet.
“You were nearly foaming at the mouth,” Sam says, voice laced with worry.
“I'm fine, man. No damage done. It just hurt like a bitch, that's all,” Dean admits, rolling his shoulders. He picked up his backpack and swung it over his shoulder. “Come on. Let's head out.”
“Mind telling me about the visions?,” Sam says, as his gaze lingered on the pile of ashes in between the two oak trees.
“Not sure... The first two were really disturbing. In the first one I felt like I lost something, and then I became something. The second one, something hijacked me and made me kill my family. Though it wasn't my family at all. In the third one...,” Dean trails off, eyes ahead.
“Yeah?,” Sam asks, curiosity piquing.
“Not important,” Dean says, deciding to keep it to himself. Sure, some hot plant creature bestows him with some visions but it's not like they'll come true or anything.
Sam stays quiet for a moment then speaks. “We should probably research and look around for an answer to them. You might have to tell me in full detail, so we get our facts straight.”
“Yeah, I'll do that,” Dean says shortly, nodding as he walks ahead.
Sam sighs, Dean knows he knows something is bothering him but Sam knows better than to say anything. Or to push him to speak any more than necessary.
Dean is grateful for that.