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This entry is part 2 of 2 in the series Finders Keepers

Sam held Arba pinned in the Devil’s Trap, grimacing only a little, while Dean busted out the propane torch to heat the iron. “What the fuck?” she spat at him, then screamed fullthroated as the brand ate its way into her host’s skin. Dean was grateful the motel they’d chosen was nearly deserted; no human would be coming to answer her cries. As for the nonhuman, the wards would prevent her getting some signal out to her daevas or to Azazel.

Dean made sure she was strapped down tight, then turned to scrape a hole in one of the lines so that Sam could get in with them. He didn’t like to think about that part much, so mostly he didn’t.

“That’s what he uses?” Sam asked, staring hard at the burn, as if Dean hadn’t explained it all ten times already. That was just Sam, always challenging, always looking for a new way of seeing things.

“Far as I know, that’s the only sigil keeping him in.” Not that Dean had conducted a thorough examination of his father’s body, but he was pretty confident. His research had said that the sigil on Dad’s arm was powerful enough to lock a demon in a human body hard enough to defeat exorcism, and Azazel wasn’t exactly a belt-and-suspenders sort of demon, unless he was whipping you with the belt and strangling you with the suspenders.

Arba had watched their exchange while struggling with her bonds, panting a little. “You little shit,” she said to Dean, nearly with admiration.

“Yeah,” he told her. “We need a crash test dummy, and you’re the lucky volunteer.”

She bit her lip and hissed, tossing her head. “What are you going to do, moron? All you’re doing is making sure this poor girl suffers more.”

Dean spared a moment to wonder just how conscious the host was. But that was another thing he really didn’t like to think much about.

“Sam,” he said, and Sam nodded and raised his hand.

Arba screamed, just like a human. Black smoke dripped from her nostrils like snot, and a trickle of blood started its way down from her left eye. But after a minute Sam was shaking, his nose starting to bleed too, his eyes flickering black-hazel-black, and he dropped his arm in frustration. Arba slumped down, doing a really good impression of someone nearly unconscious from pain.

“’sokay, Sammy,” Dean said immediately. “I’ve got another idea.”

Sam snuffled, pulling out one of those ridiculous handkerchiefs he’d started to carry around. “Yeah?”

He raised the iron, still clenched in his hand. “No reason we can’t use this to get rid of the mark.”

Sam grimaced, eyes narrowed. “We couldn’t have tried that first, before practically exploding my head?”

“Needed to know it took on her first,” Dean pointed out. Yeah, they could have tried an exorcism to be sure of that, but given Sam’s developing problem with Devil’s Traps and salt, Dean had decided that he didn’t want Sam within three states of a recitation of the Rituale Romanum. It was one thing to rip out an unwanted occupant when the original host was still there. If an exorcism did something to Sam, then his body would just be … empty, and even the thought of that was enough to freak the fuck out of Dean, so, no.

Sam shrugged, not quite agreeing. Dean wasn’t sure whether he’d followed Dean’s logic and there was no way Dean was going to talk it out with him. “I’m wiped,” he complained, pushing his hair out of his eyes.

“Might as well recharge now,” Dean suggested. “Arba’s tricky. She’s probably already plotting her way out of this one.”

Sam pulled out his knife and started towards her. “How do you know her, anyway?”

“She was my prom date. What do you think?” He should’ve known better than to mouth off like that—Sam was going to make him pay for it, later, once Arba was out of the way. But Azazel hadn’t been able to beat the smart mouth off of him, and even though Dean cared a hell of a lot more about what Sam thought about him, Sam wasn’t exactly as intimidating as a Prince of Hell. Not to the guy who’d changed his diapers, anyway, though the demons they’d been working their way through seemed to think different.

To distract himself, Dean turned to the wall and continued: “She’s his main lieutenant. Been through at least a dozen bodies since I’ve known her—likes ‘em young, but they don’t stay young long with her.” He heard Sam straddle the body—with Arba tied down, her arm wasn’t exactly available, so Dean guessed he was going full vampire. The soft sound of flesh parting still made Dean wince. He hoped Sam didn’t open an artery by accident. The host was probably already dead, given Arba’s habits, but there was still a little bit of hope.

Sam’s little involuntary sigh of pleasure nearly made Dean shudder, but he had better control than that. They were doing this because they needed to, because it took power to beat power, and they weren’t ever going to be safe until Azazel was nothing but a myth.

It was really fucking convenient that demons brought their own supply of juice with them. Now that they’d pieced that little trick together out of Dean’s experience and Sam’s dreams, they were much closer to defeating Azazel.

As soon as he’d pulled off Arba, Sam started over to where Dean was sitting on the bed, unbuckling his belt as he approached. Dean had to dodge to get past him long enough to reset the Devil’s Trap, ignoring Sam’s growl; by the time Dean returned to the bed, Sam was stretched out naked, stroking himself impatiently.

Dean crawled over Sam, letting Sam rub up against his clothes and grab his ass. They were in this together, saving Dad, maybe saving the world.

And no matter what color his eyes were, Sam was still his brother.

Series Navigation«Finders Keepers (Sin Crouching at the Door Extended Remix)
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