Title: A Friend in Need
Characters: Dean Winchester/Elle Bishop
15_song_titles Prompt: You Don’t Know Me
tamingthemuse Prompt: Chattel
Content Warning: Spoilers through 522: Swan Song (SPN).
Summary: Elle tries to figure Dean out, and more to the point wonders if she should.
Author’s Note: Part of my Alone in the Universe series. Follows “A Moment of Well Thought Out Stupidity.”
Disclaimer: I do not own. They belong to Kripke and Kring. I’m just borrowing and will put everything back where I found it.
“I thought you said we were going to a motel.”
Elle wouldn’t necessarily say she was looking forward to a motel—she was used to a bit higher standards—but a motel was at least more than this. The chattel was empty, and if the cobwebs were any indication had been for some time. In fact, the only signs of life on the old dusty furniture were the bags of clothes that looked to only be a few days old—bags that Dean went right to and started sorting through.
“We are,” he replied, crouching down, as he started sorting through the bag. “But I can’t show up at a motel with you dressed like that and not get arrested for solicitation. And I don’t feel like getting arrested today.” He glanced back at her as he handed her a pair of shorts that were way too big, but had a drawstring and would at least keep her covered until they found something more suitable to wear. “Especially when I’m not actually doin’ anything wrong.”
She sighed, before nodding and slipping the shorts on under the tails of Sylar’s shirt, tying off the drawstring as she did. Dean was moving again, zipping up bags and gathering things together, but continuing to talk to her as he did.
“You have an actual house or something, right? With clothes of your own?”
Elle hesitated. She did, probably, somewhere, but did she want to go back there and find them? Not necessarily. Sylar wasn’t going to stop just because some guy had the ability to put him to sleep. He wanted her dead, and now he was just going to be pissed off. She wasn’t even sure why Dean had saved her in the first place. “Might not be the best idea to go back there,” she replied after a while. “It’ll be pretty easy for him to find where I lived.”
“Hey, I’m not sayin’ I’d take you back there to stay,” Dean stated. “But I figure you might want some of your old stuff as oppose to having to buy new—everything. Maybe some heirlooms, personal stuff?”
Elle was quiet again, because she knew that those were things she didn’t have. The way she had grown up, there weren’t a lot of family pictures or personal items. There were just things that she had owned, and for right now, it was more than okay for her to leave them behind. She shook her head, just crossing her arms in front of her chest. “It’s complicated, but … no.”
Dean watched her, and she wasn’t sure what he was looking at, but it wasn’t something that made her feel all that comfortable. But after a minute he just nodded. “Okay. So after we get checked in I’ll take you shopping in town.” He looked her over. “We’re gonna have to get you some shoes—I don’t think anything Sammy and I have ever wore are going to fit those feet, cute as they are.”
There was something friendlier about his tone there, and she stared to relax a bit. She wasn’t sure why—he was still an unknown at this point, and she wasn’t sure if she wanted to be in the company of someone who was crazy enough to go up against Sylar without an ability, but he had saved her. That was worth something. “Sammy—is that the guy who put Sylar to sleep?” She knew the minute she said it that she had asked the wrong question. His entire body tensed and he turned away from her again.
“No. That was Cas. Sam is—was, I mean—my brother.” He swallowed again, before moving back towards the car, bags in tow. “He died.”
“Oh.” She wasn’t sure what to say to him after that. ‘I’m sorry’ always seemed hollow, and there was something so lonely about the way he said it, that she couldn’t help but throw in a bit of her own experience into the mix. “I don’t really have anybody either. I mean, I had him, but—”
“Him who? That Sylar guy?” Dean asked, raising an eyebrow curiously at her, before smirking a bit. “I don’t think that one’s quite gonna work out.”
She huffed a laugh. “Yeah. But the rest of my family’s dead, so—just me.”
“I’m sorry.” He said it, and he had a way of making it sound like he really understood what it meant to be alone. “How’d they die?”
She shook her head. “Plan on reciprocating?” That was mostly because she didn’t want to indicate that she considered the guy who not only tried to kill her, but also was the one who murdered her father. Elle—she had a way of compartmentalizing. Most people wouldn’t get it.
The question has the intended effect, though, and he smirked before nodding. “Fair enough. C’mon—let’s you get back to the motel.”
She nodded, before following his lead out to the car. “So who’s Cas?”
“Cas is my guardian angel,” he sighed. “Who’s probably starting to get a little pissed with me?”
“That why he said you had to talk. Because you’re running around almost getting yourself killed?” She was brushing over the guardian angel part for now—she figured it was a metaphor. Angels don’t exist.
“Something like that. I’m also not where I promised I’d be, but that’s really none of his business.” He walked around to the driver’s side of the car, and Elle carefully picked her way over to the passenger’s side, trying to make sure she didn’t step on anything too sharp.
“He has a pretty impressive ability,” she commented, just testing the waters to see what kind of response she would get. Dean glanced over at her for a moment, but didn’t respond until he had opened the door for her from the inside of the car.
“He isn’t the only one. You’re a walking talking light show.”
She slid into the seat and ducked her head a bit at that. “Had it since I was a kid. Part of my genetics.”
“Huh,” he nodded. “That’s not one I’ve heard before.”
He turned to back the car out of the driveway and she turned to face him with a frown. “It doesn’t weird you out?”
“Sweetheart, I’ve seen a hell of a lot weirder,” he replied, and for some reason she honestly believed him on that one. “Just don’t use it to try and kill me, and we’re good.”
“Okay,” she nodded, leaning back in the seat as they started to drive away. “I can do that.” She let the silence grow between them for a moment, before turning back to him again. She needed to know what to expect from him. Was he just going to take her somewhere else, or was he going to let her stay for a while. That was the question. “So—buying me shoes, buying me clothes—I take it this is more than just a quick ride to wherever I want to go?”
Dean was quiet for a moment before glancing back over at her. “If that’s what you want.” He shrugged. “Might be nice not to be by myself for a while.”
She considered this for a moment, and she knew that it was a risk, but everything she seemed to do was a risk. Two people alone like they were shouldn’t leave each other to continue to be alone. She knew that there was something he wasn’t telling her, but that could come later. For right now, though, she was safe. And that was good enough for her.