It’s been awhile, but I finally finished this bit of fluff!! Link to Part 10 is here: https://atomicfeminist.com/2018/07/20/supernatural-manic-pixie-god-girl-part-10-with-friends-like-these/ and if you want to start at the first one, it’s here: https://atomicfeminist.com/2017/10/31/supernatural-manic-pixie-god-girl-part-1-dean-does-dead/
Dean and Sam and the angels rushed around preparing for World War Three (probably literally) and he frantically called to an unanswering Jovi every second or two but then nothing happened. An hour passed, and then two, and then three. Dean was thinking about maybe ordering some pizzas when someone pounded on the door of the bunker. It was Jovi and she had Chronos with her. The guy looked pretty rough; Lucifer had worked him over good and he even had a couple bites taken out of him by the looks of it. But he was alive, which was good, Dean supposed. “Why did you knock?”
“The door was locked!”
“Well. Ok. But why didn’t, you know, you just show yourself in?”
“It’s warded, you idiot!”
“Oh, I didn’t know that. Sorry.”
“Who cares, would you help me?” Dean realized suddenly that Chronos was leaning pretty heavily on Jovi and he leaned in and took the weight off. He realized with a start that Chronos had only one foot.
His other leg ended at a bloody stump with a bone sticking out from it. “Yeah, he ate my foot!! Can you believe that? What kind of a fricking freak eats a guy’s foot!?”
“A fricking freak that’s gonna be defeated very soon.”
“That is only one out of many possible futures, Winchester, virtually all of which end with us facing horrible defeat, death if we’re lucky, but most of the time an eternity of torment and servitude groveling at Lucifer’s feet. Both of them.”
“Welcome to my world.”
Dean managed to get Chronos over to a couch where he could lay down. Jovi glared at Sam, who had wandered in when he heard the ruckus. “Get these wards down now, Sam. We need Oriphiel!”
“Well, actually, Jovi, uh.” Sam apparently had something he didn’t particularly want for Jovi to know. “Um. Crowley can come in whenever he wants. Already.”
“Oh, so they’re me wards, and not him wards. Got it.” She looked up and to the side as if thinking about something very far away and a moment later Crowley heeded the call and appeared. He was wearing khakis and a weathered t-shirt advertising a band Dean had never heard of, the Stone Roses. He was wearing black Converse high top sneakers and the shoelaces had smiley faces wearing sunglasses on them. Dean was stunned because it was the first time he ever saw the guy not wearing either a suit or those horrible silk pajamas. “We need some old people, Ori. Like, super old, doddering if you can find anyone that’s doddering, and sick…”
“Old people taste like cough drops!”
“Shut up, Chronos. It’s the best we can do. Oriphiel, seriously, I mean like, practically dying. And make them kind of bad, maybe, mean people, could you? That no one likes?”
Crowley nodded. “The naughty list, eh? I’ll see what I can do.” He vanished.
“He’s not gonna eat any people here, Jovi.”
“He has to, Dean. He needs food and that’s all there is for him to eat! The apples are gone now and no one worships him any more. Ok? I know it’s messed up, I get it that it offends your delicate sensibilities, but it’s just like one of those nature shows with the coyote chasing the baby wildebeest, and maybe you’re rooting for the baby wildebeest to get away the whole time but you know in the back of your mind that the coyote has to eat too!”
“People shoot coyotes.”
“That’s gratitude for you. I saved your life!” Everyone ignored Chronos.
“Dean, um, I hate to tell you, but for all you and I know, if people stopped worshipping us, and the way things are going nowadays who even knows, we’d be right there with him. Think about THAT.” Huh. He hadn’t ever stopped to consider that could be the case. “If you can’t handle it, leave the room. I’ll tell you when it’s over.”
Dean and Sam went to mull about in the hall, which was fine since Dean had a question or two for his little brother. “Did you or Cas make a ward to keep her out?”
“Yeah, like, a while ago.” Sam said it in a defensive way that made Dean mighty suspicious that he’d been left out of the loop on that decision on purpose. “I mean, it wasn’t a secret or anything.”
“Just a teeny tiny little old non-secret that nobody thought to mention to me, I see.”
“We would have told you if you would have asked.”
“How would I have known to ask about something I didn’t even know existed?”
“Dean, it wasn’t a secret?”
“What if I wanted her here? Did you ever think of that?”
“She could come in if she was invited. Just not…randomly.”
“Well I want her off the list, Sam. No more wards. Lucifer, of course. Duh. Demons, sure, you bet. But not Jovi, for cripes’ sake.”
“What if we don’t? Want her here, I mean. Uninvited.”
“Do it anyway.”
“Oookay.” Dean could tell Sam was pissed, but what ya gonna do, can’t please everyone.
Sam sniffed and sucked in his cheeks and rolled his eyes all around and stormed off with his hair fully aflop. Dean snorted a laugh and leaned against the wall to wait, his mind buzzing with prayers he didn’t have the strength to answer. He blocked them out the best he could and thought about dodos. Maybe he couldn’t make the exact same dodos that Jovi had done but maybe he could mix up penguins and ostriches and a hint of pelican together and see what came out. He filed that concept away for further investigation at a later point in time.
Faster than one might have thought – Dean shook off the image of a frat boy chugging his way through a case of beer – Jovi poked her head out into the hall. “It’s done.”
There seemed to be no remnants, no remains of whatever had transpired. Chronos appeared to be back to his usual self again, healed and perky, the proud bearer of two feet, upon which he stood. He was complaining. “Horrible, that was absolutely HORRIBLE! Ugh!!” He groaned as if he felt nauseous. “Gawd that was like eating Butter Flavored Crisco!!” Crowley was gone; Dean assumed he was dutifully getting rid of the evidence. Jeez, might be nice to have an obedient minion for a freaking change. But who in their right mind would’ve ever have bet on Crowley to be the desirable choice? “Please, Mr. God, Sir, may I have some more?”
“Don’t press your luck, Chronos.”
Chronos extended his regrown foot to the side to peer at it appraisingly. “I can’t even believe he could catch me in the time stream. He came up behind me, ME?? In TIME, and chomp! That’s…that’s…you guys, he’s really getting stronger.”
“Yeah, tell it to my face.”
The offhand remark reminded Jovi about the boxing match. “What were you even thinking, Dean, that was so stupid of you!”
“If something had happened to poor Chronos because of you I would have totally gone medieval on your ass and believe me when I say, I know how!”
“I KNOW.” Poor Chronos. Waaahh.
“You weren’t strong enough to face him yet! And now he KNOWS that!!??”
“Jovi, I know, ok?”
“Is that all you have to say for yourself?”
“Look, I didn’t come after him, he came after me.”
“Oh sure. Just like you didn’t deliberately answer prayers after I told you not to.”
“All right, I cop to that one, but the Lucifer thing just kinda…happened.”
“Well, it shouldn’t have. What are we gonna do?” Jovi’s face crumpled; he hadn’t even realized she was that upset about it but apparently she was. Before he could, you know, offer her a shoulder, Chronos was already there. Geez. Dean couldn’t even get a half a chance it didn’t seem like. Somebody was always right there every time.
“Hey, it’s ok, come on. I’m gonna help you guys, I promise. I was being an ass before, but he ate my foot. Some things are just unforgivable.”
“But how can you, Kiki?” Had she just called him Kiki? That seemed awfully affectionate-nickname-y. “You’re not strong enough to take on Lucifer.”
“I don’t need brute strength, Mom, I have cunning. Personally I think only nincompoops want to stand around whailing on each other to see whichever one of them falls down first…No offense, man. I just prefer to defeat from afar.”
“You’re gonna get yourself killed again.”
“Nah. I don’t have to take him on, directly, Jovi, don’t you see? I just have to beat him to the punch and exit stage left before he catches me. I’ll buy you guys enough time to…do whatever it is you do…to recover, or whatever. Recuperate. Regenerate. Go to the spa. On the seventh day, He Rested? And/or she. That kind of thing?”
“What do you mean?”
“Play keep away. Keep away from Lucifer.”
“Yeah, I just keep the gods on the move. He’ll show up whenever, but I’ll already know that, of course, because the timeline will be all effed up, and I’ll go back and get there just before he does, and evacuate everybody. So then he’ll waste a bunch of time looking around for a god that’s supposed to be there, but isn’t. And then when the coast is clear I just drop everybody right back where they’re supposed to be. Lucifer stays hungry, the timeline is safe.”
“That’s…that’s a really good idea.”
“Resurrecting me was a brilliant one.” Dean believed that that remained to be seen. “I can’t guarantee that it’ll work, but all we can do is try, right? I’ll keep you posted.” He pressed a noisy kiss onto Jovi’s hair (grr) and disappeared.
Dean blinked, considering how nicely things seemed to be working out. “He seems, uh, nicer than I remember.”
Jovi’s eyes widened and she shook her head quickly. “No, he’s totally up to something.”
“Oh yeah. Big time.”
“Like teaming up with Lucifer?”
“Uh, no, not quite that big time, I guess. Small time. But something. He never helped me voluntarily before unless he needed something or had an angle. Like, in all of history I don’t think. Ever. It’s always been tit for tat with us.” Dean did not love that choice of words. “Just…don’t trust him, that’s all. He’s very charming when he wants to be and a lot of fun, I honestly think the two of you could be great friends if you take him as he is and don’t expect anything…oh, I don’t know, human…but don’t trust him. Not even to like, turn your back to pee.”
“Can I trust you?”
“Of course. But don’t pee in front of me though.”
He laughed and waited for her to continue but she didn’t. She smiled and swallowed a gulp of air and tilted her head which was her tell, the signal that she was about to disappear. To stop her Dean felt himself blurting words, a word, actually, before he thought it through. “Pizza!”
“Do you wanna, I was thinking about, getting pizza?”
“Oh, sure, I guess.” But what he had thought would be pizza for two ended up as a three-way when Crowley showed back up. Then everyone invited themselves and somebody told Gabriel and he swung by for a while bringing a couple of cases of beer along with him, and pork rinds, and cigars. Dean made a God-size dent in the beer and found himself staring at Jovi delicately crunching salty fried pigskin across a smoky room full of people and entities and pizza boxes and half-drunk 2-liter bottles of Coke products and wondering if she still liked him and how he was gonna make it the next several months without using any of his powers because he really kind of enjoyed using them, a lot.
Jovi ate only vegetarian pizza and Crowley teased her mercilessly for it, considering that she had just fed several elderly human beings to a hungry god, and she laughed and laughed. He wasn’t funny at all either by the way. One time he saw them entwine fingers just for a second but it could have been just a friendship thing, maybe. Friends did that, right? He didn’t have any female friends to compare with since the women unlucky enough to pass his way never seemed to survive long enough to befriend. She flirted with Bobby, sitting on his lap once and stealing his hat and putting it on her own head; Dean figured she probably could’ve had the old coot eating right out of her hand by the end of the performance. Even Castiel seemed to be warming up to her although he still gave Crowley the ol’ stinkeye. Sam wasn’t, preferring to sit alone in a corner and scowl, but screw him.
Dean felt happy and sad at the same time and wished everything could be just like it was only with a couple of the places switched around maybe. There was this beautiful normalcy to it and in his life, Dean had had precious little of that. It was mindblowing to think that there was a whole planet of people out there who did stuff like this all the time, every weekend, just got together with friends for impromptu pizza parties. Even more mindblowing, the only reason they could do that and have that life was because of him, because he was looking out for them, keeping the world spinning and the laws of physics in place and the forces of evil at bay. The latter had always been true to some extent, but the God angle really took the weight resting uneasily on his shoulders to a whole nother level. And he couldn’t even help them, the humans; here they were crying out to him for protection and he could do nothing. A God who couldn’t use his glory, what was even the point? He was useless. Just like Crowley had said, he was impotent.
On that cheery note he decided to go out for some air. Nobody noticed, and he was glad. He slipped outside and walked down the road a ways into the darkness, looked up at the stars and even when he reached out for a moment and connected with every particle in the universe, he felt very alone. Most of it really was just empty space; he had heard it said before but now he could reach out and touch it and prove to himself that it was true.
It must have been hell for Jovi, outgoing as she was, alone for so long in the endless nothing. Alone in a way that he couldn’t even fathom, alone for eternity practically, most of the time weak like he was weak now, waiting impatiently for her powers to regenerate so she could cut another piece of them loose to take the next step, set into place the next building block of her creation so that eventually she wouldn’t have to be alone anymore. He remembered how scared she had been that night she cleavered her arm; how bad it hurt and he’d only done it just on his pinky. And how embarrassing she seemed to find it for people to know, as if she was ashamed of it all. The courage, or desperation it must have required for her to make that sacrifice again and again, innumerable times, to have created everything in the universe that way including his own worthless impotent ass was humbling and heartbreaking and he felt tears sting his eyes just from trying to imagine it.
Dean heard the door open and shut and figured it was Sam coming to demand that he get everyone out of the bunker because he wanted to go to bed or some stupid thing like that since Sam was incapable of having fun, ever, but it wasn’t. It was Jovi, he could feel her. He said nothing, didn’t move, didn’t even breathe. Part of him wanted her to go away and part of him didn’t. Despite the pitch dark and his silence she approached him so easily it confirmed for certain that she really could sense him just the way he could sense her and he felt all kinds of ways about that. “Are you ok?” Again it was like she had read his mind and again he wished for the ability to do the same. “Things are gonna work out, Dean, they always do…”
He kissed her. It wasn’t something he thought through, the urge just took him and he did it.
There weren’t words in any language anywhere for the sensation. The nearest thing he could come up with was one of those compilation videos where a whole bunch of nuclear bombs went off one right after the other to Rob Zombie music only he was standing at ground zero for every one of them getting the flesh blasted right off his skeleton. In a very, very, very good way. Very.
Don’t let it go, don’t let it go, don’t let it go…but she let go. She took a step back and blinked real slow as if in a daze and he thought for a moment that was it, he had her, he won and it could last forever. But then she stepped forward instead and slapped him right in the face and it was like being hit by Lucifer all over again. He hadn’t been expecting it though, didn’t brace himself, and she laid him out flat, he fell over hard to the side and couldn’t even get his hand up to break his fall. He actually said oof. His ear where she’d smacked him rang and hissed and throbbed and he saw stars. He worked his jaw to try to shake the feeling.
She stood over him with her tiny fists clenched. “You had your chance!”
Gee, what a surprise, it all blew up in Dean’s face.
Sam would have loved, seriously, loved, to possibly get a word in edgewise with his big brother at some point during that day but Dean was too busy getting in fistfights with the Devil and sacrificing old people to immortals and inviting God over for pizza. And after dinner he had disappeared, off somewhere with The Flying Spaghetti Monster apparently, since she was missing too.
Looking over at Castiel and Crowley playing XBox and laughing together – he didn’t think he’d ever seen Cas laugh that much in like a whole entire year, let alone a few hours and it sure looked like he was getting over his whole angel-demon hybrid issue – and Bobby who hadn’t stopped grinning since she had buttered him all up and given him a lap dance practically, Sam felt like he was the only being in the universe who hadn’t completely lost their minds over their new addition. It just added insult to injury when Jovi suddenly reappeared in the bunker, making Sam long for his dearly departed wards. By the look on her face he knew right away something had happened, they had argued, maybe. Good. She tugged at Crowley’s arm. “We’re leaving.”
Before they could disapparate Dean was back. He had a rapidly blackening black eye but he didn’t look angry, he looked humiliated and maybe…hurt? Not physically, either. Emotionally, and Sam had never been too awfully sure that Dean even had emotions in the way that most people tended to define them. “Leaving? How does it feel to be that whipped, Crowley?”
“Glorious.” Crowley smirked and he and Jovi vanished.
Dean kicked the nearest chair and it flew across the room and into the wall. It shattered into a million pieces and he called it back and repaired it inside a second but as soon as it dropped back into place he kicked it into the wall again. “Dean!”
Much to Sam’s surprise Dean pointed a finger at him. “This is all your fault!”
“If you would have just given her a break then none of this would have happened!”
“It’s none of your business what happened!”
“Dean, calm down!”
“I could have had everything, everything, Sammy, and you had to ruin it for me!”
“How did I…what did I…what…”
“How many times are you going to completely eff up my life, Sam? Were you born to do it, or is it like, just the most random string of coincidences ever?”
Sam hadn’t noticed at first, but Castiel had risen and approached Dean. Sam had always found it interesting how Castiel could calm Dean down when no one else could. He figured it was because Cas and Dean didn’t have all the brother baggage between them, but it grated on Sam’s nerves when Dean seemed to respond more to Castiel and even Crowley in some ways than he did Sam. And in the meantime, Sam had no such luxury; no release valve, no wing men, no real friends to turn to when Dean was pissing him off. All his friends were Dean’s friends first. Didn’t seem exactly fair sometimes. “Dean, come on, let’s, let’s not say anything we might regret here.”
“Tell that to him, Cas, he’s the one that can’t keep his damn mouth shut!”
“Just, just, just…cool off first, all right, kid?” Bobby. “Sober up. You can sort it out in the morning.” Something about the way Bobby said it made Sam realize with a start that both Castiel and Bobby blamed him at least in part for whatever was going on too, and that was, just like, so totally ridiculous since he didn’t even know what he’d done to start out with.
“What did I even DO?” He really literally had no idea, because it was obviously about Jovi, and what had he even done to Jovi, ever, except simply remind people, on occasion, of all the things that she had done in the first place. A pretty bizarre state of affairs when somehow the person who wrongs everyone again and again gets off scot free with no repercussions because they’re little and cute and look sad and say they’re, like, so totally sorry and everything, while the person who simply, on occasion, brings up those wrongs and says hey maybe we should, you know, keep these things in the back of our minds, here, guys, even if she has boobs somehow gets morphed into the bad guy. That’s really, pret-ty bizarre when you stop to think about it. He hadn’t. even. done. anything!
“Aw, Sam, shut up for a change.” Bobby really did seem to think that he, Sam, innocent bystander, had some part in all this when he was just sitting there like a good little scapegoat.
Regardless of what Sam had or hadn’t done, Cas was able to work his magic on Dean despite that because Dean ground his teeth and swallowed the rest of whatever it was he’d been about to say. “I’m going to the bar.” Which seemed like the worst idea ever but no one wanted to say that and risk getting Dean all riled up again.
“I’ll go with you.” Castiel inspected Dean’s eye which was nearly swollen shut and was turning shades of violet that Sam wouldn’tve thought the human body could produce and well, maybe it couldn’t. “Let me…”
“Leave it!” Dean turned and stormed towards the door. About halfway there he disappeared. Castiel sighed and looked at Sam, and then Bobby, and Sam again, and followed suit.
Sam turned to Bobby and rolled his eyes. Bobby raised his eyebrows. “What? You too?”
“I, just…I don’t think you’re that dumb, is all, Sam.”
“Well, apparently, I am, Bobby.”
“He loves her, ya idjit.”
“If he does, it’s only because she forced him to.”
“I don’t know about that. I ain’t so sure.”
“Well, I am sure, Bobby, and it’s kind of my job, as Dean’s brother, to, you know, point that out? Even when people don’t particularly like hearing it.”
“I don’t get the two of you, sometimes, Sam, I really don’t. It’s like each of you exists to screw up the other one’s life. I mean, dysfunctional don’t even really start to cover it.”
“I want you to take a second and think, if the roles were reversed here, and you were sitting where Dean was…”
“He’d be doing exactly what I’m doing, Bobby!”
“You bet your ass he would, and that’s my point. Just when things start to get good, just when either one of you have a chance at some scrap of a normal on life on your own terms…”
“How is being turned into GOD in any way normal?”
Bobby ignored him. “…in pops the other one to pull it all down, and drag ya back down into the mud. He’s done it to you, Sam, you know he has, with Jess, hell, even you and Ruby seemed kind of happy for a while there…”
“Ruby was evil! And I was miserable!”
“That’s neither here nor there, it’s the same thing is what I’m saying. Even with that veterinarian lady you were telling me about…”
“Dean had nothing to do with me and Amelia.”
“…just the idea of each other, it keeps you from letting other people into your inner sanctum, you know, your heart, or whatever, and I’m gonna kick your ass later for making me say that. You can’t tell me that you weren’t holding back some with her, with Amelia, because of Dean. Because you figured he’d come back someday and you knew you’d choose him so you let her go back to her husband because eventually you knew you’d be gone. It’s not normal, Sam! What you guys got between you, it’s beautiful, it’s amazing, but it ain’t normal. Don’t you think it’s long past time you just, one or the other of you, I don’t know…disengage?”
“Bobby, you don’t understand.”
“I understand that the love of a man’s life ain’t supposed to be his brother. That much I understand. You’re missing out, boys. You got so focused on each other and on this goddamn war you’re fighting that you’re missing out on the one thing that makes it all worthwhile.”
“What do you know about it? You’re just as bad as us.”
“That’s cause the love of my life died. I had her and I lost her and so for me, all that was left was the war. But you knuckleheads, you never took the chance. Maybe you, for a minute or two, with Jess, had that kind of happiness, I don’t know, but I know that for sure Dean never has. He maybe thought he tried it with Lisa but I don’t think he ever really did, because if he had, if he jumped in with both feet ‘stead of just dipping a toe into the pool, he never would have let go.”
“That was for her protection, Bobby, he had no choice!”
“There’s always a choice, Sam. You make the choice and you make it work. No matter how much it costs you. But you and Dean, you two keep choosing each other. You boys are like goddamn Siamese twins, stuck together. Someone needs to come along with a hatchet and give you a good chop down the middle and force you to live on your own. Whether you want to or not. Cause this…this ain’t healthy.”
Bobby got up and left and Sam just sat there thinking for a while.
Later that night Sam went into the closet and took a long look at Jess. He tried to remember what it had felt like, being with her. He tried to remember what it had felt like to be in love, not cautiously, not like it had been with Amelia with both of them guarded and scarred and looking over their shoulders every moment waiting for ancient history to rise up and clobber them over the heads, but new and fresh and exciting, like everything in the whole wide universe, like their love was the only thing that mattered. He couldn’t remember any more. He could remember experiencing an emotion and academically he comprehended that emotion was what people called love. But he couldn’t remember what that emotion felt like and he wondered if love was another thing he had sacrificed on the altar along with his parents and his life and his soul.
For what, for what? Who even knew. So Dean could have, as he said himself, everything. Magic powers, an eternal lifespan, supernatural creatures fighting over who got to be BFFs with him, and a hot chick to bang. And love like a big fat cherry on top of the “Dean gets everything” sundae. Sam couldn’t even remember what love felt like and yet Dean had it handed to him on a silver platter.
Ok. That seemed totally fair.
Dean came rolling in around 5 am. Castiel had come in hours before looking worried and defeated. Sam knew all this because he hadn’t slept. He was waiting for Dean to come home and the sheet covered lump that had once housed Jess stood nearby. They looked at each other carefully, cautiously. “Where have you been all this time?” There was no reproach in his voice, only curiosity. He was over the worst of it by that point.
“Waitress.” He made it look so easy, to forget that way, but Sam had tried that path a time or two himself and he found that it didn’t work. By the look on Dean’s bruised face it hadn’t worked for him, either. He seemed embarrassed and Sam had the distinct feeling Dean would have much rather no one witnessed his walk of shame. Even though he didn’t particularly want to, Sam felt a rush of pity for his brother.
“Get rid of her.”
Sam gestured at Jess. “I don’t…the person who was with Jess…is dead. Or gone. Or something. That part of me is…broken, I think, Dean. And…I don’t think it would be fair…to Jess…to bring her back for the sake of somebody that doesn’t exist any more.”
Dean said nothing, but he understood. He nodded slowly and on the 5th time he nodded Jess was gone and the sheet fell to the floor, empty.