chase surgeon

duckondebut


the figure is svelte

and the hair is adorable - i don't deny that


Previous Entry Share Next Entry
Choices
chase surgeon
duckondebut
I keep neglecting cross-posting here. >.<

Summary: Sam/Amelia, eventual Sam/Amelia/Castiel. The story's over. No, it really is. Now, they can finally start living their lives.

A future!fic set some indefinite time after the s10 finale. However it’s from Amelia’s PoV and there are no s10-specific spoilers. Warnings for some mild cursing.

Choices

When Amelia sees Sam again, he’s standing outside her door in the pouring rain, soaked to the bone.

She cranes her neck outside and peers at the road past his shoulder. “So,” she says. “Where is it?”

He blinks at her; she’s briefly distracted by the curl of wet hair clinging to his face next to his ear and her own urge to tuck it back. He looks like a drowned rat, she decides to herself before she is further distracted. An overgrown version of something that Riot would chase around the garden, except with a lot more hair and a hideous jacket.

“What?” he says.

“I thought maybe you hit another dog,” she says. “Maybe a rabbit. A moose, a guinea pig! I don’t know, Sam.”

“I didn’t—” He closes his eyes and takes a deep breath. “I was passing by,” he says. “I just thought—it’s been so long, and—”

She sighs. “Come in first,” she says. “I’ll get you some towels to dry yourself off. Y’know,” she adds with a smile as he steps in, dripping rainwater everywhere, “umbrellas are a good idea, regardless of whatever lumberjack macho bullshit you’ve clearly been fed at some point in your life.”

He smiles back at her. “Maybe I’ve just lost mine,” he says, and there are new lines around his eyes that somehow soften his face even more, and—and it’s exactly the kind of pseudo-cryptic, sentimental bullshit that had her shack up with some big, beautiful stranger with dewy eyes who couldn’t even use his legal name for reasons unknown. He’d felt like the one good choice in a year full of crappy ones, coming into her life like some sort of plaid-clad erector-set prince charming from a fairy tale—and leaving like a self-sacrificing lover from a cheap drugstore paperback. And god help her, every time she sees his face, all she can think of is taking one of his big hands in hers and leaving.

She’s been leaving for far too long.

Sam’s standing discreetly in one corner of the living room so as to minimise the water soaking into her carpet when she comes back with a stack of towels. She takes the jacket that he gingerly offers her and watches him bury his face into a towel and scrub it over his scalp. His hair ends up sticking every which way—it’s thinner, somehow, shorter than she remembers it, and she wants to bite her fingers at the very thought of dragging her hands through the strands, like she’d done a hundred times before. She can’t—

“So why are you here, Sam?” she asks, before she loses her nerve. “Heard that I’m a widow for real this time? Got another long vacation from that mysterious job that you can’t tell me about, so you’ll pass some time here before you up and leave in the middle of the night?”

Sam looks pained. “I never wanted to leave—” He shakes his head, letting out a breath through pursed lips. “I’m sorry to hear about Don.”

“Watched him die this time,” she says, bleakly. “Car accident. Do you have any idea what it’s like to sit through two funerals of the man you loved?”

He swallows roughly. “No,” he says.

“He forgave me for you, you know.” She crosses her arms and glares at him as he sits on the couch. His hair is mussed, there’s a towel around his shoulders, his eyes are red, and he looks a little pathetic as he stares up at her. “Said that he totally understood. That he was grateful that I’d chosen him, and that he would’ve understood if I’d chosen you, too.”

“Amelia—”

“Except that’s not what happened, is it? You walked away, Sam; you tookthat choice away from me. And then you came back. You gave me some kind of—” she waves her hands, “—false hope. And you took that away, too. So if you’ve come back now, trying to dangle yourself in front of me again like a particularly opportunistic, lanky piece of bait—”

Amelia,” Sam says, a little desperately. “Can you please—please stop.”

She blinks at him.

“I just came to talk to you,” he says quickly. “To apologise; square things off. And to, uh.” He drops his eyes. “To explain.”

“About?”

“What I really do.” He takes a deep breath and finally meets her eyes. “I’m a hunter, Amelia. I hunted—with my brother. We tackled the supernatural—ghosts, werewolves, vampires, monsters, demigods, and, uh, uh.” He falters, maybe at the expression on her face, she’s not sure; she has very little idea, leave alone control, about what she looks like right now. “Demons and angels and uh, there was an Apocalypse. That nearly happened, but we stopped it, my brother and my friends and I. Then—things happened, my brother died, and when I met you, I—I don’t know what I was, but I was ready to be done with that life.”

Amelia sinks into the nearest chair; the jacket that’s hanging from her hands is still dripping onto the carpet. “Ghosts,” she says faintly. “The Apocalypse.”

“I didn’t want to scare you,” he ploughs on, with the air of somebody filling the silence before an inevitable reprimand. “But I wasn’t being honest, and, well. I’ve spent a lifetime deceiving people. And I want to unlearn, I really do.”

There’s a long, long silence where he fidgets, his eyes darting everywhere and fingers picking restlessly at his frayed sleeves. Finally, Amelia says, “You know, I’ve always wondered.”

He looks up sharply. “What?”

“I mean—you hear crazy stories all the time, stuff that can go from, y’know, ‘somehow the barn door gets mysteriously unlocked every night’ to ‘mega corporations that pop up overnight and go bust just as quickly, with hundreds of corpses everywhere’, and some part of your mind starts agreeing with the hacks and their conspiracy theories. So—I don’t know. I don’t know, Sam, maybe I believe you.” She pauses. “Our Governor isn’t really a changeling, is he?”

Sam blinks at her. “… Not as far as I know?”

“Okay.” She takes a deep breath. “Okay—okay, then. Is that why you—was all of this part of the reason you didn’t show up at the motel that night?”

Sam nods.

“You’re going to have to do a lot more explaining. Tell me everything.”

He laughs bleakly. “It’s a really fucking long story.”

Amelia sighs. Oh, what the hell. “Maybe you can tell it to me over dinner.”

-

He ends up staying for a day, then another day, then another week, because there’s always one more story, one more question, one more truth. He tells her about restless spirits and rock salt, of all things, being the first line of defence against everything from death echoes to hellspawn over dinner (with a digression over the monster-hunting properties of iodised salt as opposed to uniodised salt over dessert); about heaven and hell over fixing the sink; about starting and stopping the Apocalypse over hauling the last box of Sam’s books from his car into the house.

“That’s some pretty heavy stuff,” Amelia remarks, picking up the oldest, mustiest looking book in her pile and flipping through it. There’s a coffee stain on the page where there’s an illustration of a terrible thing with endless teeth feasting on the guts of some poor man, and a faded little notation in the corner which says ‘OVERKILL’. There’s another, fresher notation in red ink underneath, which just says, ‘DOESN’T EVEN COMPARE’.

“I’m sorry,” Sam says. “That’s the last of it, I promise.”

Amelia snaps the book shut. “That’s not what I meant.” The image of that horrible thing appears behind her eyelids every time she blinks; she wants to vomit. “The whole, uh, Team Free Will thing, the whole… cosmic family feud.” She laughs, and hopes it doesn’t sound too forced. “It’s kind of fucked up if you think about it, right?”

He gives a short, surprised laugh. “Fucked up is a bit of an understatement.”

“Yeah, yeah, no, I mean—free will is great and everything, and you can definitely choose family, but you can’t choose family, you know?”

He shrugs and looks away. “Can’t choose what you’re born with, but you can choose what you do with it. That was the point of the whole thing, I think.”

She rigorously examines an old magazine that was stuffed between two books. “Even when those choices are impulsive, ill-advised, and desperate? Like, say… moving in with an ex for the third time?”

To her surprise, he laughs out loud. “Impulsive, ill-advised and desperateis pretty much how we saved the world, so… yeah.” There’s a quick flash of dimples. “Definitely.”

She smiles and throws the magazine at him; he catches it deftly. “Well then, superman, best get to organising this stuff.” She drags the last box that he’d carried up with him towards her, cuts it open, and gapes. “Um, Sam?”

“Yeah?”

“Why is this box practically overflowing with handcuffs?”

“… I can explain.”

-

Amelia comes back home from work one day to see Sam sitting slump-shouldered in front of his laptop, staring at the screen almost vacantly. She drops her bag on the chair next to him, says, “Sam?”, then says it twice, then thrice, but he barely flinches.

Finally she comes up behind him to look at the screen over his shoulder. “College applications?”

“I don’t remember,” he says, his voice slow, so faint. “I don’t remember, Amelia.”

She looks at him sharply. “Don’t remember what? How I got here? Howyou got here?” Maybe he was having an absent seizure; maybe he was blacking out often; maybe—god. Who knows what kind of organic damage all that… crap he went through did to him? “Do you know what time it is right now? Can you tell me the date?”

He swallows. “Not like that.” He waves a hand at the screen. “I don’t know how to answer these questions. And, I mean, I was a great student. Before. I’d pretty much—I used to have these kinds of things in the bag. But now it’s like there’s this… huge gulf between what I used to be and what I am, and I just, I just don’t know how to do this anymore.” He leans forward, drops his head in his hands. “It’s like I’ve forgotten how to think. Forgotten how to be. And that frightens me more than anything.”

She places a hand on his back, feels his breath shuddering in and out of him. Some absurd part of her is relieved, almost, that he’s still the Sam that she recognises. “We just have to work with what we have,” she says softly.

She closes the laptop. Sam flinches and blinks at the sound, like he’s just woken up from a dream.

-

“I’m an old friend of Sam’s,” the man at the door tells her brightly, his smile stretched thin. “I was passing by and I was hoping I could have a word with him?”

Amelia squints at the man, at his messy hair and his rumpled trenchcoat that’s hiding at least one weapon, as far she can tell. Riot, at her feet, barks half-heartedly at him.

“Sam’s gone to work,” she says shortly. “If you’re interested in talking to him, you can call him.”

His smile stretches into a grimace. “He’s changed his number.”

“Then I’d suggest you take the hint.” She steps back behind the threshold, hopes that whatever it is that Sam spent three whole afternoons carving into every door and every windowsill is enough to keep whatever this guy is out.

“No, please, you have to understand—”

“Cas?”

Both of them jump at Sam’s voice. He’s halfway down the driveway, two bulging bags of groceries in his hands, staring at the new arrival. They were going to make spaghetti for dinner and marathon the final season ofGame of Thrones that night; now she thinks that that’s not going to happen, and somehow, a part of her is already preparing for him to leave. She’s spent a lot of time standing on thresholds, watching people come and go, has Amelia.

“Sam!” ‘Cas’ breaks into a huge smile and practically throws himself onto Sam; he laughs, a little strained, but his face relaxes into the largest grin she’s seen on him since… well, ever.

“Let me just put these away,” Sam says, walking towards the house. “Come on in!”

“Wait, so—just wait,” Amelia says, following Sam into the kitchen, “you’re telling me that you haven’t proofed this house against angels? After everything you said they’d done to your life? To the world? I mean, on the basis of the Apocalypse alone—”

“You told her?” Castiel says from behind her, making her jump. “Of course, well, I mean, obviously,” he adds, giving her a furtive glance, “it’s the right thing to do; you know from past experience that lies have never been the best recourse.”

Sam blinks at both of them, a bottle of soda in one hand. Suddenly he looks very, very big and very, very alone in the tiny kitchen. “No, they haven’t,” he says finally, a little faintly.

“Who were you answering?” Amelia asks before she can help herself; she bites her tongue.

Sam turns to put the soda away, so deliberately it looks like he’s trying to crawl into the fridge. “Do you have any news, Cas? How’s, uh. How’s Dean?”

“He misses you,” Castiel says, looking relieved. “You have left behind an entire legacy, Sam; this is centuries’ worth of invaluable information and experience that you’ve—”

“I’ve had this conversation with Dean,” Sam says, but he’s still not meeting Castiel’s eyes. “There’s a hunters’ network that he can contact—tell him to start with Carlos, I’ve mostly explained the Men of Letters situation to him, and he’s even better with ancient languages than I am. Don’t, uh,” he laughs softly, “don’t tell him I said that, though.”

“Sam—” Castiel starts, glances quickly at Amelia again before ploughing on, “I know that things did not—end well between you and Dean, but you know from experience that running away has never helped. We’ve all made terrible choices, and they have resulted in catastrophe. I know I have. So have you. So has Dean. But through it all you two have been better together than apart—”

“I’m sorry, Cas, I really, really am. And—I know what I’ve left behind. I’m acutely aware of it. It’s why I’m here.” Sam’s eyes suddenly widen. “You haven’t told Dean where I am, have you?”

There’s a long, long moment of silence before Castiel says, slowly, sadly, “No, I haven’t, Sam.”

“Okay, I’ve heard enough,” Amelia says, slapping her hands together, making both men jump. “Thank you, Castiel, for coming; now please leave.”

“But Sam—”

“—has made it perfectly clear that he’s not going anywhere,” she says. “Now, either you can join us for cheese and wine and a two hour long rant on Tyrion Lannister, or you can leave. It’s a simple enough choice, I think.”

Castiel is backing away towards the door but he peers over her shoulder, says, “Think about it, Sam, please!”

“Yeah, goodbye to you too,” she says, holding the door open.

When he finally leaves, she turns back to the kitchen to see Sam gaping at her. “You didn’t have to do that,” he says, without any real heat.

“Well, I didn’t have to shame you into adopting Riot four years ago, Sam, but I did and here we are.” She blows out a breath. “I don’t regret it for where it’s led us, not for one second.”

“Even though it got you into trouble.”

So much trouble.”

He laughs out loud, and she thinks the day may be salvageable, after all.

-

“You know,” Sam says, twining a strand of her hair around his fingers, “the first girl I ever kissed was named Amelia.”

She wants to roll her eyes at him, but she’s much too comfortable with her head on his chest, so she settles for snorting. “So you’re really going to make post-coital heart-to-hearts a thing for us.”

A laugh rumbles through his chest. “It’s a thing now?”

“Yeah.” She traces a knotted scar that snakes across his ribs with her nails; he shivers. “What happened to her?”

“Dean—she, uh. She died.”

“Oh. I’m sorry.” She follows the scar to the anti-possession tattoo high on his chest; the same tattoo that Sam had insisted she get earlier that week. He’s mixed something in the ink, he’d said, to make indelible; the tattoo tingles under her fingertips, like static. “Okay,” she says, still not looking at him, “what about the first boy you kissed?”

“My roommate in my first year at Stanford,” he says without hesitation. “’Course, he got possessed by a demon later, killed my girlfriend, and then I tortured and killed him five years later.” He laughs. It’s a grating sort of laugh, like rusted iron over taut, fragile nerves. “I guess tragedy’s been sort of a theme in my love-life. Or so I’ve been told.” He’s trembling now, and she’s desperate to stop the conversation.

And yet.

“You sure there wasn’t at least one happy ending?”

“I—” he starts, then pauses. He’s quiet for much too long, and, absurdly, Amelia feels her heart sinking.

“I met you,” he says finally.

She smiles against his skin. “We’re a happy ending, are we?”

“We’re an ending,” Sam says. “For now, that’s enough.”

-

Amelia’s just started digging into her sundae when Castiel drops into the seat opposite her and says, “Cholestrol.”

She blinks at him. “Excuse me?”

“Lipids, in his bloodstream—I believe an excess of that can lead to formation of plaques in his arteries, which in turn can block blood flow to the cardiac muscle and the brain, which can lead to—”

She stops him with a wave of her hand. “I know what hyperlipidemia means. As entertaining as it is to have an honest to god angel talk science, if all you’re here to do is to vomit a textbook at me, I’m afraid I’ll have to pass.”

Castiel shakes his head. “I’m talking about Sam,” he says. “Not only are his lipid levels higher than normal, but he faces an impending failure to regulate his blood sugar levels, his joints are showing signs of chronic inflammation, and there are signs that he will suffer from degenerative brain disease within the next three decades.”

Amelia’s eyebrows climb into her hairline. “Is that all?”

“Well.” He scratches the back of his neck. “He also needs reading glasses.”

She thrusts her spoon into her half-melted sundae. “We’ll get a proper medical checkup soon. Right now, we’ve got problems like the fact that in half the states, including this one, he doesn’t even exist, and in the other half, he’s a wanted serial killer and terrorist.”

“I’m saying that’s not necessary,” Castiel says, leaning forward. “I can heal him from all of these afflictions with one touch.”

“Oh really?” Amelia snorts. “You could be saving thousands of lives out there—not to mention billions of dollars—by doing your all-in-one diagnostic and healer thing. A rather more effective use of your time, I think.”

His face twists in anger for a second; it is an ugly, startling sight, and she almost gets up. However when he says, “do you have any idea of what he has done? Of what has been done to him? Of what he has sacrificed?”, his voice is low, calm, and grim.

“I have an idea,” she says, picking the cherry that’s now floating on top of her ice-cream and popping it into her mouth. “I mean, I know the basics; he hasn’t told me the details.”

“He has suffered enough,” Castiel says, glaring. “But as is his norm, he continues to place little value over his own life, to run away from home and his brother and his legacy—”

“He’s a grown fucking man, Castiel,” Amelia says. “And as far as I know, so is Dean. Honestly, ‘running away’…”

“The Winchesters can hardly be judged by the same standards as most of the rest of society—”

“Why the fuck not?” Amelia sighs. “Look. I’m a widow twice-over—to the same man. I’ve moved in for the second time with a guy I still know very little about. I’ve already been let go from one clinic because of ‘poor people management skills’ and ‘grief reaction’, I’m struggling to hold on to my present job, and I see a counsellor three days a week and I hate her guts. I’ve just learned of a world I had no idea existed under my nose—guess what, I’m chatting to a fucking angel and I have a squiggle on my back that’s supposed to stop demons from entering my body.”

“Well, it’s not so much a squiggle as it is—”

“I haven’t been to my family home in years,” she barrels on. “And my father and I have had a million fights. But I come here every Saturday afternoon for an ice cream sundae because that’s what my Dad and I used to do when I was a girl. Sometimes I Skype him when I’m here, and we shoot the shit and we talk about each other, because being family and being yourself are not mutually exclusive.” She takes a shaky breath. “I’m just—asking you to give Sam some space.”

“I haven’t—”

“He adores you, that much is obvious,” Amelia says. “I’m not asking you to stay away. I’m just—a little less angel mojo, a little more friendly chats over coffee?”

Castiel’s face is impassive as he stares at her. “Perhaps,” he says.

“Awesome.” She turns her attention back to her icecream, which at this stage has turned into a kind of multi-coloured slushie.

“Maybe I could, uh, order another one of those for you.”

“Yes, please.”

“Okay.”

-

The next night, Castiel is standing outside their door, a game ofMonopoly tucked under one arm and a box of teabags in the other hand.

Sam laughs delightedly. “You’re shitting me,” he says.

“No, Sam,” Castiel says. “I believe the correct expression involves shooting said shit.”

This sets Sam laughing again. “Well, come on in,” he says, opening the door wider.

Castiel catches Amelia’s eyes over Sam’s shoulder as he enters; he smiles. Amelia smiles back.

Finis


  • 1
Oh my. This is a strange and beautiful fic. Lovely dialogue, perfect pairing, and just the hints of things gone wrong and unfixable. I adore Amelia in this (and always have). And I feel, honestly, relieved for Sam somehow. (And afraid for him, but that's a Sam-theme) Lovely work.

Thank you for reading! <3

You're making me like Amelia! How is that even possible?

I've always adored Amelia, and I'm so glad I've got you interested in her! <3

Thanks for reading!

Thank you thank you thank you for giving Sam a believable, vaguely happy ending with someone who will go to bat for him!

Aw, this was oddly sweet! I love surly Amelia and how she reads Cas.

  • 1
?

Log in