Title: the best of the best of the best, sir
Fandom: “Leverage”/High School Musical crossover
Disclaimer: not my characters; title from Men In Black
Warnings: pre-pilot; pre-movies
Point of view: third
The couple is frightened and angry, both pale and trembling. They are as all-American as a stereotype can come. Their young daughter sits between them, tears pouring down her face. Her long blonde hair is greasy and unbrushed. Both parents look just as unbathed.
“How long has your son been missing?” Eliot asks, directing the question to the father.
The mother answers, “A week.” Her voice is strong and he reassesses her.
“Why have you come to me?” He is honestly curious; kidnappings are not his forte. He prefers cut and dry inanimate objects.
It is the father’s turn to speak. “The police had no leads and no ideas. All my contacts in the FBI have more important things to do.” The words are bitter. “I’m not a congressman or in the Senate; I just own a resort.”
Eliot nods sympathetically. “How did you get my name?”
The mother shrugs, pulling her daughter closer. “You’re an open secret, Mr. Spencer. We don’t talk about it, but everyone knows.” She names a man he did business with well over a year ago. He remembers that case: it was fun, and only a few people died.
“When was the last time any of you saw the boy?” he asks.
“He asked me for a ride home.” The daughter finally speaks, her voice almost lost in a sob. “But I…” She buries her face in her hands, crying. “I was angry so I said no.”
The mother wraps her arms around the girl and the father meets Eliot’s gaze. “Money is no problem, Mr. Spencer. Just, please… bring Ryan home.”
“I can’t promise anything, Mr. Evans,” he says. “But I’ll do my best.”
Not his usual case at all, but it’s been awhile since one has been this challenging. He welcomes it.
He leaves the family crying together; no one vanishes with no trail to mark their passage, and he is the best. If this kid can be found, Eliot will be the one to find him.
Fandom: “Stargate: Atlantis”
Disclaimer: not my characters; just for fun.
Warnings: spoilers for season four; AU; character death
Point of view: third
Notes: more of the elemental AU
Atlantis stops talking in what, on Earth, would be December. Rodney understands; he hasn’t felt much like talking in a while, either.
It’ll be alright, he tells her, trying to be soothing like a soft summer rain, even though the sea outside is raging with his emotions, with his grief and fear and anger and hatred. It’ll get easier. I swear.
It’s not his first lie to the city, to home, to himself. And it won’t be the last.
Carter is a good leader. She’s smart and funny and sharp, biting where Elizabeth was calm. That’s the difference between earth and fire, Rodney thinks. Teyla and Ronon have that balance, too.
Something’s missing, with John gone. Their group is uneven, now. Fire and earth and water, with no air—it’s not right.
Atlantis is empty, barren, desolate. And so is Rodney.
He goes swimming in the ocean every week, trying to release all his feelings into the water. It roils and roars, swelling with tidal waves that smash into beaches on the other side of the planet.
On Earth, he really had been the strongest of all waters. Here, that might is still unquestioned. So when he dives into the water from the east pier—their pier—no one thinks about it. And no one ever brings it up, even when the city shakes from the force of his ocean.
Rodney had stayed behind to work on some project, something he can’t even remember now. Ronon had a broken arm from sparring with a dozen marines at the same time. Teyla was too far along in her pregnancy to risk a mission.
It was supposed to be easy, just some recon. John, Lorne, and some marines. Easy.
John never came home.
After, no one could near Ronon without being scorched for days. Teyla was slightly more approachable, but even the least of all elements could feel her rage as the ground trembled deep beneath the ocean.
And, of course, no one missed the sea’s wrath.
Rodney hasn’t cried. He won’t. Teyla names her son John, and Ronon forces him to run every day, and Carter tries to assign them another member, another air to balance them out.
The girl does her best, but none of them can stand her.
Rodney hasn’t cried and Atlantis still won’t talk, not like she did for John. At night, as he sleeps, the sea still screams.
He is the most powerful water in living memory, maybe in all history, and Carter tells him he has to get ahold of himself before he sinks Atlantis back beneath the waves.
It will get better, he whispers to Atlantis, every morning and every evening, watching the sunset, Teyla and Ronon flanking him.
Teyla holds her infant son and Ronon stands tall. They stay silent; words are unnecessary.
Every time, as they turn to go to their rooms, Teyla whispers, He could yet come back.
Rodney never responds.
He feels it, deep in his marrow, in his heart and his soul and his most primal self—John Sheppard is dead. The ocean cries it for him, every night, but if Teyla must delude herself, so be it.
A year passes, and two, and the ocean finally stops crying for John.
Title: intricate spun web
Fandom: “Supernatural” with a dash of various mythologies
Disclaimer: not my characters; just for fun.
Warnings: spoilers for season three
Point of view: third
“Ah, little trickster, tired of playing with those boys yet?” She raises a dark eyebrow at him.
He ducks his head. “I went a bit far, I admit. But my reasoning was sound!”
She scoffs. “Well, come on in out of the cold.” She steps back from the door and he shuffles in, shaking off snow. “You should’ve known better, Coyote’s son. Those boys weren’t meant for the likes of you.”
He glares at her for a moment before the scent of cocoa catches his attention. “Ooh,” he says. “For me?”
She laughs. “I made enough for two, boyo.”
He grins, loping past her to the kitchen. “Chocolate is one of my very favorite things, Mama.”
She smacks his shoulder with her wooden spoon. “Respect me, boy. Your daddy is comin’ to supper next week.”
He blanches. “Aww, man. What for?”
She hands him a mug of cocoa. “Just a couple of old friends catching up.” She smirks. “I think we’ll talk about Azazel’s kids a bit.”
He sighs. “I was just trying to teach Sam a lesson, is all. He needs to learn to live without Dean.”
Her smile is knowing. “But that time will pass swiftly, little trickster. Dean won’t be gone for long.”
He stares at her, sipping his cocoa. It burns his tongue. “What do you know, Perkune Tete?” he asks softly.
She chuckles and tosses him a bag of marshmallows. “I know that Morrigo has her favorites and Aniketos can never die.”
“Oh,” he breathes. “Mama, you weave quite the web.”
Her laughter booms out, shaking the house like thunder.
Title: with mighty wings outspread
Disclaimer: not my characters; just for fun. Title from Milton.
Warnings: spoilers for 4.10; some reimaginings of Biblical lore
Pairings: mentions of Dean/Anna and Castiel/Dean
Point of view: third
Ananchel, he calls. Ananchel, I know you are there.
She appears before him, glorious as the day she Fell. Her moments of impurity are erased by Father’s grace. She would be breathtaking, had he breath.
Castiel, she replies. What do you want?
He inclines his head, unable to meet her eyes. I ask your forgiveness. I… I regret my actions, and the inaction on my part that led to your Fall.
She smiles gently, like he’s an errant child. You had nothing to do with my Fall, Castiel. I tired of never knowing my Creator. I tired of His arbitrary rules and expectations. You could have done nothing, brother.
Relief sweeps him, and a deep sorrow. After… I wondered if I should have Fallen with you. We had been together in all things.
She reaches out to caress his jaw. I felt truly alone. I felt terror and despair. I would not wish those on anyone, Castiel, even Sammael or his lover. But I felt… Her eyes close. I felt love, Castiel. Not the barren feeling that Our Creator gave us, no… I felt pleasure. And that… She takes a deep, unnecessary breath, opening her eyes. The expression there is one he does not know. Castiel, I cannot explain it. But being human—I have existed for eons, but until I was human I was not alive.
But cut off from Father, he asks. How could you bear it?
She shrugs, feathers jostling musically in place. The better parts of humanity were worth it. But you must understand—I was unaware I had not always been human.
Why… He cannot think of how to frame the question. You took pleasure in Dean Winchester?
Her laughter is beautiful. I knew there was lust in your heart, that night in the cabin.
He blushes, but she—the favorite of all his siblings—lightly touches his shoulder. Do not be ashamed, Castiel. In all my life, I have never met his equal. I knew that I would have one chance, one last night of humanity—so I took it. I enjoyed his body, yes. I have no regrets.
Lust is a sin, he says. But I have yet to repent, Ananchel.
She smiles sadly, leaning in to rest her forehead against his. Sweet Castiel, she whispers. You have nothing to repent. Until you act there is no sin… and if ever there were a reason to Fall, Dean is it. She lightly presses her lips to his. You will be offered a choice: follow God’s word or follow Dean.
Castiel’s flinch is instinctual, ingrained since the beginning. Blasphemy—
She places a finger to his mouth. No, Castiel. Fact. The final battle is coming, and there are more than two sides: God with His angels, Lucifer with his demons, and Sam. Many demons will flock to Sam’s banner, but nowhere near all.
She pulls away, stepping back. I will be with Dean. I will not ask you to join us; I know how hard a decision it will be. Her wings flare as she prepares to leave. Her last piece of advice is simply, Talk to Dean.
Castiel watches her go, more confused than he has ever been. He has always been loyal to Father, never even considered straying. He rejected Sammael. He has held himself aloof from Man—but now… He pulled Dean from Hell, cradled that soul in Heaven’s Light, healed the rotting, torn flesh and returned Dean to life. He is Dean’s guardian, Dean’s guide.
Castiel knows that Dean will never leave Sam, even if Father commands they part. He also knows that Sam is beyond death—only his brother could kill Sam now that he’s come into his abilities. That is why Dean had to be saved: he is the last-ditch effort of a war already lost.
Looking out over Creation, Castiel wonders what to do. The final battle is swiftly approaching, Lucifer about to walk free, God marshalling his forces—
And Sam is eating a hamburger, laughing with Dean.
If ever there were a reason to Fall…
And down Castiel plummets.
Title: There is nothing between us
Fandom: High School Musical
Disclaimer: not my characters; title from Sylvia Plath
Warnings: spoilers for High School Musical 2
Pairings: none stated
Point of view: third
The night after the Star Dazzle Talent Show, Sharpay crawled into Ryan’s bed like she hadn’t since they were small.
“That was really mean,” she whispered, snuggling in close. “What you did.”
“Yeah, well,” he whispered back, wrapping his arms around her. “It really hurt when you cut me out.”
“I know.” She buried her face in his neck, fingers fisted in his shirt. “I’m sorry, Ry. I just… I get so caught up sometimes.”
He gently kissed the crown of her head. “Me, too, Shar.”
They sigh in tandem. “So, we’re better now?” Sharpay asked after a moment of quiet.
Ryan nodded. “Yeah, we are.”
“Good.” Sharpay pulled the sheet up and tucked it around them. “I hate it when we fight.”
He chuckled, turning his body in to face her. “I’m not too fond of it myself, you know.”
They rested their foreheads together, breathing each other’s breath.
“Love you,” she murmured.
“Love you, too,” he murmured back. “Even when you’re a bitch.”
Title: I find no peace, and all my war is done
Fandom: Dead and Breakfast/“Smallville” crossover
Disclaimer: not my characters; title from Sir Thomas Wyatt the Elder
Warnings: AU for Dead and Breakfast; AU for “Smallville”
Point of view: third
After surviving the zombies in Lovelock and making sure the kids were safe, the Sheriff and Drifter stayed together for a few months before going their separate ways. The Sheriff was tired of dark magic and curses—he’d had his fill in Lovelock—and that’s all the Drifter did: drift from place to place breaking them.
About a week after leaving the Drifter in a speck of a town called Smallville, the Sheriff found a kid covered in dust and stumbling down the road. He was bloody and bruised, muttering about how he couldn’t find his mom.
The Sheriff planted himself in the kid’s way and tried to catch his attention, but the boy—no more than twenty-five, if that—just went around him.
So he wasn’t completely out of it, then.
“Hey, boy,” the Sheriff said in his most commanding tone, grabbing the kid’s shoulder.
The kid flinched from his touch, bringing a hand up to punch blindly. The Sheriff restrained him easily.
The kid’s litany about his mother changed to “Let me go, let me go, let me go!” He bucked and kicked, repeating the same three words over and over.
The Sheriff backed away, holding his hands up. “Hey, now, calm on down there, friend,” he said. “I just wanna look you over, get you some medical attention. You look mighty hurt.”
The kid trembled in place, eyes hazel and huge. “I don’t,” he mumbled. “I have to find Mom.”
“Well, how about this,” the Sheriff said. “You come with me. There’s a town about an hour’s drive north. We’ll get a doc to look you over, get you cleaned up some. You can sleep, eat somethin’, and then we’ll ask the police about your mama.” He paused, waiting for the kid to say something. After a moment, he asked, “How’s that sound?”
The kid said, “I have to find Mom.”
Sighing, the Sheriff muttered, “Okey-dokey, then.” He slowly stepped forward, keeping his hands in the kid’s sight. “If you come with me, I promise to look for her.”
Skittishly, the kid backed away, but he looked at the Sheriff. “You’ll help me?”
The Sheriff nodded. “But first, we have to get you checked out. You’re walkin’ wounded, friend. I ain’t even sure how you’re still on your feet.” The kid looked like he’d survived Lovelock’s zombie massacre.
The Sheriff held out a hand. “Let me help you into my truck, friend. You won’t find your mama if you collapse out here in the corn.”
He stood still, waiting for the kid to make the first move. The kid shuffled closer, eyes shooting warily from the Sheriff’s hand to his face and back. Finally, he stopped, barely in reach. “You’ll help?” he asked again, clearly fighting unconsciousness.
“Sure as a cow gives milk,” the Sheriff said. “I give you my word, boy.”
“Jason,” the kid said, wilting. As the Sheriff caught him, he added, “My name’s Jason,” and passed out.
“Well, alright,” the Sheriff said. “Nice to meet you, Jason.”
Jason was thin but strong; he’d been well take care of till recently. The Sheriff gave him a quick look over, but no wounds stood out. He was just bruised with lots of cuts. The Sheriff swung him up into a fireman’s carry and brought him to the truck. Jason whimpered as the Sheriff buckled him in. “Sorry, friend,” he murmured. “But I can’t go lettin’ you get even more beat up, can I? For now, you’re my responsibility, ain’t ya?”
The kid didn’t answer, being unconscious and all, but the Sheriff said, “That’s right, you sure are.”
He closed the door and hurried around the truck, sliding in and gunning her. “Don’t know how long you been wanderin’, friend,” he told Jason, “but you really should’a seen a doctor a while ago. It’s time to be rectifying that.”
He drove north, playing country music and singing along, occasionally reaching over to pat Jason’s shoulder and saying, “It’ll be alright now.”
Title: history repeated
Fandom: “Supernatural”/His Dark Materials crossover
Disclaimer: the Winchesters aren’t mine
Warnings: takes place during “Home”
Point of view: third
Notes: more in the “choosing to change” ‘verse
As they drove into Lawrence, Sam asked, “What was Mom’s daemon?” Gariel was stretched along his shoulders beneath his shirt and Rhiannon was sprawled on the backseat.
Dean took his time answering, and Sam didn’t rush him. Rhiannon said, “He was like me, I think.”
“An ocelot,” Dean finally murmured. “He was an ocelot named Katiel.”
Sam reached up to lay a finger on Gariel’s petite head. “If there were any other way, Dean,” he said.
Dean nodded sharply. “I know, Sam. It’s alright.”
Rhiannon purred loudly, trying to comfort her other half, and Gariel flicked her tongue against the back of Sam’s neck.
“I’ll tell you about Mom,” Rhiannon said. “And Dad, and Astren and Katiel. If you want.”
Sam looked at Dean, who kept staring straight ahead. Finally, Dean gave the briefest of nods.
“That would be wonderful,” Sam said.