Title: Research time
Characters: Dean, Sam, Andrew, Buffy, Faith, Dawn, Willow, Xander
Disclaimer: Supernatural belongs to Eric Kripke. The Buffyverse is the creation of Joss Whedon. Siobhan and Aimee are my characters and were created specifically for this fic. Do not use them without talking to me first.
Word count: 2834
Prompt: 010 - Years
Claim: Dean Winchester
Archive: Anywhere, just give credit where credit is due
Feedback: Yes, please! Send all comments to firstname.lastname@example.org
Summary: In order to find Jo, the boys team up with the resident group of Vampire Slayers. Insanity ensues.
“Well, that’s just wonderful,” Dean grumped as the smoke cleared.
Siobhan shrugged. “That’s just life, Dean. Now that he’s gone, we’re free to poke around his place to see if he left us anything.”
“This is where Willow’s spell said Jo was,” Sam said. “So she should be here somewhere.”
“Not necessarily, Sam,” Aimee corrected him. “That spell of hers is so sensitive that it’ll latch on to anything. A stray hair, a fingernail, hell, even a piece of her clothing that she’s worn very recently will do the trick.”
“Speaking of stray hairs, Jo’s blond, isn’t she?” Siobhan asked from over by the bed. In her fingers, she held a long, pale strand of hair.
Dean nodded. “So she was here at some point.”
“I’d say very recently. Ethan must have moved her just before we got here.”
“I can’t say that I’m happy to see him, but it’s nice to be facing off against someone that isn’t massively overpowered,” Xander said.
“Says you,” Siobhan grumped. “He’s human, which means that we can’t kill him.”
“You’re not allowed to kill people?” Dean asked her.
“Nope. I mean, it’s happened on occasion by accident, but it’s not a good thing. We let humans deal with other humans. We were designed to deal with the other stuff.”
“How well do you guys know this Ethan character anyways?” Sam asked.
“Aimee and Siobhan don’t know him at all outside of in the historical sense,” replied Xander. “Me, on the other hand… The first time we ran into him was nine years ago, just before Halloween in 1997. He enchanted a bunch of costumes so that the people wearing them would assume identities and abilities of that costume. I got turned into a military guy, Willow became a ghost and Buffy was an 18th century English noblewoman. He showed up again later trying to escape this demon called Eyghon that he, Giles, and a bunch of other people summoned when they were younger. It was trying to kill off the people in that group, locating them by this tattoo that they all had. Angel wound up killing the demon in the end. We didn’t see him again until the fall of 98 when he was distributing this enchanted candy through our school’s band fundraiser. The stuff made the adults act like teenagers. It was really strange. The last time he showed up was when he turned Giles into a Fyarl demon through what Willow calls a transmogrification spell. After he turned Giles back into his proper form, Buffy’s boyfriend Riley arrested him like I said earlier.”
“So now he’s back.” Aimee shook her head. “Great. He’s definitely the guy who took Jo.” She held up a white wig and a trench coat. “Do these look familiar to you at all?”
“That’s what the guy in the corner was wearing last night,” Dean confirmed. “This begs the question. Why Jo?”
“Why not?” Siobhan countered. “It can’t be good, whatever his reason is, but I think he picked Jo because she was an easier target than the other women that have been hanging out at the Roadhouse these days.”
“Namely you Slayers,” Sam said.
Aimee nodded. “There are ways of incapacitating a Slayer, but they’re not easy to get your hands on, never mind getting your hands on one of us in the first place.”
Dean picked up a book from the small table beside the bed and started flipping through it. “Does anyone here know what language this is? I don’t recognize it.”
“’Bhan’s the resident language expert,” Xander said, looking at the redhead expectantly.
“I’m no expert, Xander.”
Xander shrugged. “You can read more of them than Giles can.”
Siobhan walked over and looked at the book over Dean’s shoulder. “Ancient Sumerian, perhaps. It looks like it, but I can’t be sure until I’ve translated some of the text.”
“You can do that?” he asked, impressed.
“Not here, though. I don’t have any of my reference books.”
“You can always use the books that Giles keeps at Oz’s place,” Xander suggested. “His place is closer to here than yours is.”
She nodded. “I’ll meet you guys there, then. Aimee? Did you drive here or walk? I didn’t see your car anywhere.”
“I walked, actually. I’ve been wandering around all day.”
“Ok. We’ll head to Oz’s. I’ll sit down with the books and figure out what this book Dean found is. In the meantime, I strongly suggest that someone either pick up food or order out. I haven’t eaten since lunch and Aimee probably hasn’t eaten for longer than that. I don’t know about you guys, but I think better on a full stomach.”
“Slayers do everything better on a full stomach,” Xander quipped, earning himself a pair of dirty looks from the two Slayers.
When Siobhan and Aimee got back to Oz’s place, they found Dean, Sam, Giles, and Ellen sitting around a table, looking at the book in question. “Any luck, Giles?” Siobhan asked, coming over after taking her shoes off.
He glanced up at her briefly. “Yes, actually. You were right, incidentally. This book is written in Ancient Sumerian. The problem is that I don’t believe that this text is of ancient origins. None of what I’ve translated so far makes any sense. It’s not a prophecy; the Ancient Sumerians wrote their prophecies in a very specific format and this feels like reading a modern novel.”
“Mind if I take a look at what you’ve translated so far?” she offered, sitting down in a chair beside Dean.
Giles slid the notepad towards her. “Be my guest,” he said tiredly.
She scanned the few paragraphs that Giles had written down. “This doesn’t make any sense.”
Dean looked over at it. “Looks like nonsense to me.”
She shook her head. “Nonsense I can deal with. Most prophecies read like nursery rhymes, but this looks completely random, like the ramblings of a madman.”
“Giles, can I borrow your pen?” Dean asked him. Giles handed him the black ball point he’d been using. “Thanks. You see, our dad was in the Marine core back in the day and he taught Sam and me a think or two about codes,” he explained as he circled parts of the text and rewrote them below. “This is one of the codes he taught us; it’s not a hard one once you know how to use it, but it’s not easy to pick it out if you don’t know what to look for.”
Siobhan watched him write. “Huh. Now the question is why would someone write a book in code and then translate it into Ancient Sumerian?”
Dean smiled at her. “Probably just to confuse you people.”
“Dean, if Siobhan translates the text for you, could you decode it?” Ellen asked hopefully.
“I could do that.” He nodded.
“Whoa, wait a minute here,” Siobhan protested. “What do I look like here? I’m a Slayer, not a living, breathing version of Bablefish!”
Ellen looked at her. “’Bhan, please. This is my daughter we’re talking about.”
“You know as well as I do that Giles, Dawn, and even Andrew could translate thing book just as well as I can.”
“Be that as it may, Andrew has other responsibilities as do I,” Gild told her tiredly. “In a toss up between you and Dawn, I would prefer that you do this.”
“Please, Siobhan,” Ellen pleaded.
Siobhan looked from Giles and Ellen to Dean and back again, finally shaking her head. “Fine, but only because Ellen asked nicely.”
“Thank you,” Ellen got up and clasped Siobhan on the shoulder. “If you find anything, I’ll be back at the Roadhouse.”
“I’m surprised that you’re even opening it.”
“I have to do something to keep myself busy,” she said as she left. The others left the room to let Siobhan concentrate on translating the text in the book.
“So how do you want to do this?” Dena asked her.
“I’ll translate a page of text and give it to you to decode.”
“I could just decode as you translate.”
“It makes me crazy when people read over my shoulder. Besides, it could take me a little while to get anything done.”
“So what am I supposed to do in the meantime?” he grumped.
“What do I look like, the entertainment committee?” she snapped back at him. “That’s not exactly my problem.”
“I’m not just going to sit here doing nothing.”
She narrowed her eyes in annoyance. “So find something to keep you busy. In the meantime, just keep quiet. I need to concentrate.” She turned her attention back to the book and scanned the page for a brief moment before slowly writing a few words down on the blank sheet of paper.
“Oh, if you could write that in double space, that would be helpful,” Dean interrupted. She simply gave him a look before turning back to her translating.
Dean leaned back in his chair, lapsing into silence for a bit before utter boredom kicked in. He started making faces, but that got old fast as the only person around was Siobhan and she was too busy translating to notice what he was doing. Then he started drumming his fingers on the table in time to a Metallica song he had running through his head, humming the melody with the drumming.
“You mind?” she asked. “I’m trying to concentrate here.”
He sighed and stopped, leaning on the table. He turned his head and watched her for a bit, figuring that, if he had nothing else to do, he may as well enjoy the scenery.
She looks kin d of cute when she’s concentrating like that, he observed. I’m really starting to agree with Andrew on this. She’s seriously hot. It’s really too bad that she’s so difficult to talk to. She’s the first natural redhead I’ve seen in a few years, and the last one was that frigid bitch in Texas. Siobhan doesn’t strike me as being frigid, though. Fiery is a better word. At the opposite end of the spectrum, but still. Thing is, it’s not the stereotypical fiery that one naturally associates with redheads. I’m not really sure what word to apply to it. It makes me wonder, though, if this is her normal personality or if there’s something else going on there. I stand by my first impression though. She’s a firecracker.
It occurred to him just how little he knew about the Slayers and their friends in general and her specifically. Not that it had stopped him, as he’d gone off with women he knew less about, but he was still curious.
I know a fair amount more about her than I do about her than I usually bother to find out about any of the women I pick up in bars or on jobs, but I feel like I need to know more. It’s really starting to bug me.
Siobhan finished writing a page and slid it over to him without looking up. Dean stared at it in bewilderment for a minute as it had derailed his train of thought. She looked up at him. “You ok there, Dean?”
“Huh? Oh, yeah, fine. I was just…lost in thought there.”
“You don’t really strike me as the type of person who spends a great deal of time thinking deep thoughts or getting lost in thought.”
“Not normally, no,” he admitted, then gave himself a swift mental kick in the ass for saying it. It had just slipped out. “Then again, I seem to be doing a lot of things I wouldn’t normally do.”
“Such as?” she prompted. “If you don’t mind my asking, that is.”
“Having an actual conversation with a pretty girl, for one. Working with said girl for another.”
“Pretty girl?” she asked, confused. “Anyone I know?”
Dean looked slightly amused. “You could say that,” he said slowly, not sure what she was trying to get at. He studied her face carefully. “In fact, I’m very sure that you know exactly who I’m talking about.”
“Let me guess. Faith? Or maybe Buffy? If it’s Buffy, you’re out of luck hitting on her. She’s seeing some guy called The Immortal and he’s supposed to be some kind of legendary lover.”
“And they say I’m a little dense,” he muttered. “At least I know when I’m being talked about in a good way.”
That got through. “Wait…You can’t be talking about me. Are you?”
He poked her in the forehead with one finger. “Who else?”
She gave him an odd look. “You have strange taste.”
“What makes you say that?”
“I’m not pretty, not like the other Slayers. Really, I’m the plain one. Even compared to my family members, I’m the ugly duckling of the bunch.”
“You have a strange definition of the word plain.” He leaned closer to her. “If you’re the plain one, I’ll take plain.”
“This is some clever ploy to get into my pants, isn’t it?”
“The thought had occurred to me and, frankly, I wouldn’t say no if the opportunity came up, but really, there’s something else that’s a little more important right now than a romp through the sheets.”
“Maybe when this is all over I’ll make a real try at that. Unless you really want o have a go at it.”
Siobhan’s eyebrows twitched. “You’re so sure of yourself. Does that ploy actually work?”
“Sometimes, but it depends on the situation. Honestly, though, I’m not really trying right now.”
She leaned in to the point where their noses were only a couple inches apart. “A piece of advice, Dean? Don’t. Just don’t try. I’m not interested.”
“Was it something I said?” he asked, jerking backwards as if she’s burned him.
“No, I’m just not interested that’s all. Nothing personal. Now, could you work on decoding that piece of paper while I get more of it translated? I’d like to get this over with as soon as possible.”
Dean just looked at her. “Uh…sure. Do you have a pen or pencil or something I can use to write with? I’m not overly fond of using my own blood to write with.”
Wordlessly, she handed him a blue ball point pen and went back to her translations. He sighed and looked at the page in front of him. Slowly, he circled the relevant sections of the text and rewrote them in the spaces that Siobhan had left on the page.
What is wrong with her? She has the self-image of an unpopular junior high girl. He peeked at her out of the corner of his eye. I wonder…what kind of family she comes from if she considers herself to be plain?
A thought occurred to him. Aimee seems to know her pretty well. I’ll see if she’ll tell me anything about this.
A few hours later, Siobhan handed him a sheet of paper and leaned her head down on the table for a rest. By the time Dean had finished decoding it, she’d passed out. Sam walked in then with Andrew and Aimee in tow. “I take it that you’re taking a break from the translating?” Sam asked, seeing Siobhan.
“She’s only been gone for a couple of minutes,” Dean told him.
“She’ll be out for an hour or two then,” Aimee said. “Once she’s out, she’s out and it’s not easy to wake her up, especially when she’s as exhausted as she’s been lately. Says she hasn’t been sleeping well. Something about bad dreams.”
“Should we wake her up?”
“We should go somewhere and leave her in peace to get whatever sleep she can get.
“So we have to?” Andrew pouted. It’s nice to be able to look at her without getting yelled at or smacked.”
“That happens to you often?” Sam asked.
Andrew shrugged. “Only when she’s in a bad mood when she notices.” He thought about that. “Yeah, fairly often.”
“She’s in a bad mood a lot?”
“Lately, yes. She won’t say why.”
“To you, anyways,” Aimee corrected. “I know why as she talks to me. Trust me; her mood swings are very justifiable.”
“And that would be…why, exactly?” Dean asked. All eyes were on Aimee.
“I promised I wouldn’t tell. If you want to know about that, you have to ask her yourself. Dean? If you’re taking a break, we’re heading off to eat and you’re welcome to join us.”
“Food sounds really good. I’ll meet you guys outside in a few minutes. I just want to finish this up.” They nodded and went outside. Alone with her again, he looked down at Siobhan. She looked almost peaceful in her sleep.
So it seems that not all women look angelic in their sleep. I always thought that was bullshit and now I have proof.
He smiled and took off his jacket, draping it over her slim shoulders like a blanket. His hand briefly touched one pale cheek as he did. “Sleep well, Siobhan,” he said as he left the room.
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