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hoodie_time remix challenge

Posted on 2010.11.21 at 23:32
Underfoot:: yada yada
In the soul:: sleepysleepy
In the blood:: purring
Tags: , , ,
Okay, so this was... really not what I had in mind for this remix. Not Dean-centric enough by half, for one thing, and yet... I find I kinda like it.
Hope you do!
Oh, and *shoo* - go read the original first! This will make waaaay more sense if you do! (link under the cut)

Title: Fallow (Wish You Were Here remix)
Author: calUK
Characters: Dean, Muriel(angel)
Genre/pairing: Gen/none
Rating: T
Word-count: 2,066 words.
Spoilers: Seasons 4 + 5, loosely and very vague.
Warnings: References to self-harm.
Original story: Wish You Were Here by rainylemons rainylemons.livejournal.com/1992.html

Summary: Even the Fallen can find their way home. 

Disclaimer: Not mine, generating no profit. Or shame.

:: ::

It is... confusing.

This man, this mud-monkey, this mortal, hairless ape who huddles at the bottom of the well-shaft, pitiful and vulnerable, mired in his own waste and filth; this is Michael's vessel? She stands at the crumbling wall, feels the bricks and mortar shift and fall to dust under the scant weight of the body she inhabits and stares down, the dark parting for her eyes as the Red Sea did for the prophet. She watches him as he sleeps, fitful and broken dreams that flutter at the edges of her awareness, and wonders how something so utterly repugnant and pathetic could be the destined vessel for the vastness and purity of the Archangel.

Chill wind tugs at her hair, the goggles around her neck and she shivers, lets her mind slip away into a scene more vivid, more complete than memories alone could construct. She can feel the sun on her face, the breeze warm as it dances through her hair, grass prickling the bare soles of her feet as she wanders through valleys and fields and listens to the world growing around her, young and vibrant and new.

It fades too soon, faster than ever before and her throat tightens with grief and the aching loneliness, the quiet inside her soul where the voices of her brethren once roared with song.

“Watch him.”

She doesn't start at the voice – not quite, the demon still pressing against her awareness like a thorn, her senses not yet diminished enough to let the utter wrongness of the thing fade into the blankness of the world. But she doesn't turn, refuses to acknowledge the order and feels the demon edge closer.

“Watch the little shit, or I'll tell Him that you've been 'having doubts' about switching to the winning side. You know what he'll do, right? If he thinks, even for a second, that you might go running back to big brother?”

Heat along her side, pressing close and she crushes down a flinch, can't hide the shudder as the demon's breath gusts hot as the June sun across the back of her neck.

“He'll rip your wings off, little bird, tear them away over a century or more and then he'll feed them to his hounds.”

She clenches her jaw, nods once, every muscle taut, and waits for the demon's satisfied laugh to fade away into the empty field.

“Bitch,” she murmurs, feels a thrill of rebellion shiver down her spine and grins mirthlessly, even as she begs forgiveness in the back of her mind.

There's a flutter of hellfire across the corner of her eye, a shade that doesn't belong in this, or any world and she twitches, half-starts towards it, hand already lifting on instinct to cleanse, to expel, to purify, power simmering under her skin before she remembers.

It's from his mind, from his dreams, this whimpering, feeble man for whom so many of her brothers and sisters have died, this monkey, this shattered, futile thing for whom she's committed treason.

He doesn't even know it's all for him, for his agreement and his acceptance and that, that's... infuriating.

But the flash-flicker-slide of redbloodblackcharredskinbrightbrightbrightedgeoftheblade in his dreams holds her still, trapped like a fly in amber.

A lifetime, she hears him think, half-fever dream, half-refusal to give in. I said no for a lifetime, and she wishes with all her heart, with all the centuries and millennia that she's been extant, that he would just stop.

“Enough,” she breathes. “Please, enough.”

She sighs, weary in a way she never was before the demon came to her and whispered promises of a world reborn but this fight has raged forever and she'd had enough long before now.

She reaches out in one direction, feels the plastic cup fill her hand and steps into the well, finds herself crouched by his knees as he shivers and shakes, every breath rattling in his lungs, slumped awkwardly against the wall, arms wrapped tight around his chest for warmth. His face is drawn, etched with hurt and thirst but he looks like Michael, she suddenly realizes. It makes her hand shake, a new sensation, and she stares down at the cup clasped in trembling fingers in something approaching shock.

'Your brother,' Margie whimpers in her head. 'Your own brother,' but he's not. Not yet, at least, and not ever if he's left down here without water for much longer. She knows the Morning Star can bring him back easily enough, but she finds she doesn't want to see his soul twisted through the devil's fingers and she spreads her palm across his brow without another seconds thought, lets the summer sun and the gentle breeze filter through her fingers into his soul and closes her eyes, feels him wake into the dream. She watches as he stands, wary grace as he stalks through the grass. He tilts his head back, lips curling into a smile and with none of the pain tightening his features, he looks more like Michael than ever.

It's not physical, she realizes, watching him make his way to the creek. Just something in the way he moves, the way he smiles when he kneels on the bank and she presses the cup to his lips. He drinks greedily, water trickling down his chin, blood dried black down one side of his head, flaking away under her fingers. She lets the dream slip away and his eyelids flutter as he pushes into her hand.

“Muriel, let me out. I'm dying,” he rasps and she shifts closer, pulls him against her as she tips the cup against his lips again. His thirst resonates with the low buzz of craving humming along her vessel's nerves.

Since she'd bowed her head to the Morning Stars' lieutenant, the hunger has only grown stronger, fear fueling it, grief and loneliness battering at her will. She's given in once, when the hunter climbed to the top of the well, the taste of smoldering paper and tobacco on her tongue intrinsically wound with the thin snap of something shattering inside her as she dropped him back into the dark.

“I can't let you go. I can't. I'm afraid.”

He twitches, writhes against her with a wince as his leg twists and she almost reaches down, healing warm under the tips of Margie's functionally-unpainted nails. But she stops, knows, somehow, she's being watched even now, the small kindness of the water permitted when the greater would not be and she snaps her hand into a fist. Anger surges through her, burns bright in the shell of her vessel, that this man could confuse her so, could make her doubt the choices she's made when she knows, knows that in the end they'll bring about the new world that both her brethren and the Morning Star promised her.

“Castiel,” he croaks out, grips her wrist weakly and she holds herself carefully motionless in her vessel, too aware of the fury boiling over in Margie's veins. If she moves now, she thinks she might crush him, choke him, unmake him and for all that they've promised they'll just bring him back, she knows she'll be just so much dust drifting on the quiet breeze before he draws breath again. “If you’re afraid to let me go then find Cas. Please, Muriel. They’re doing this because of Sam and I don’t … I can’t have it be my fault. I can’t lose him like that.”

Just like that, the anger's gone.

She's ached with it for so long, felt bloated and smothered by the rage at the world and the careless mortals into whose care it was given. She's watched them destroy each other, killing and maiming until every last shred of compassion she could dimly feel was gone and she turned at last to the Lightbringer and his promises of a world remade in the image of the Father they both remembered.

It flickers away and leaves her hollowed out, empty, devoid of everything except the sudden, overwhelming guilt and she wants it back, the drive, the fire that gave her strength when she had nothing left to draw on. She hates him, suddenly, this filthy, stinking child who can find the will to deny all the angels in heaven and hell when all she can do is Fall, envies him the love that shivers through his voice when he speaks of his brother, even though doubt and distrust still echo in his memory. And she knows he will be her undoing, fears him for it, that something so weak and broken and lowly could bring about her end.

“I'm afraid,” she manages, steps away through space, flees until she's high above the cold, fallow field, until she can see the shape of the world, the curve of the horizon beckoning her. It's summer, somewhere, sun-warmed dust and golden skies and she yearns for it, recognizes, at last, the the heat of her anger was just a pale shadow of what she lost when she crossed the battleground.

Oh Father,
she mourns, repents, and she weeps tears that smoke on the thin, brittle air, stirred faintly by the pressure of her wings. This high, her brothers are just dots against the snow, insects scurrying across the earth as they patrol on the demons bidding. She waits, watches as the world turns, removed from it as she reaches for something to fill the void inside, anger, faith, anything but the thin edge of pity for the dying man trapped in the well.

She can feel it when delirium steals his reason away, drops lower so she can hear him bargain with the shades of his family. Crouching on the wall of the well, she listens to him as he rambles, voice worn away, barely carrying enough for even her ears to hear.

“I’ve tried to go back,”
she hears, with a wince for the grating catch in his voice. “Tried to get back to where we were, but I don’t know how, Dad. I just don’t and now some bitch angel tells me that he’s tried offing himself to get away from the devil and I didn’t even know. I don’t know how to protect him. How to help him.”

The grief in his voice staggers her, loss so profound, she hadn't thought mortals capable of feeling. His guilt jars against her own, as his thirst did her craving and just the thought of that has her vessel's fingers fumbling at a pocket. She lets instinct rule, pulling out a cigarette and lighting it with a match that flares and dies in the gathering dusk. The first pull hits her lungs as she hears him choke back a sob below.

“You think I should forgive him?”
Dean asked. “For what? For the apocalypse? He had help. For the death of our friends? It wasn’t his fault. He should know that.”

He had help.

She'd known that the opening of the cage had been directed, considered but to hear it spoken of so openly, so starkly... she drags in another breath of smoke, so deep it makes even her vessel's hardened lungs spasm. She coughs, spits out flakes of tobacco, dark on the snow and watches it melt around them.

“What do you want from me? You want to know that I feel badly about Sam? You want to know that it’s killing me that this is happening to him? Well, it is and I don’t know what to do anymore.”

“Me either,” she whispers, turns her gaze inward to the hollowness left behind, searches the emptiness for direction, for peace, for forgiveness until the ember of her cigarette burns her fingers.

“Help me,”
he rasps, voice shaking and thin and she looks up at last, sees the moon fat and heavy in the sky, sees, too, the way he clings to the wall, torn nails weeping, his legs trembling as he stands, defiant still. Feels the world shift and tear, hears them stumble in the snow, voices loud in the empty vastness of the fallow field, waiting for the new season and the next harvest to be planted.

Waiting for summer.

“Is anyone here? Do you get anything?”

“Dean calls it my Spidey-sense.”

She nods.



primrose_1 at 2010-11-22 19:07 (UTC) (Link)
*applauds* Good job, lady!
caluk at 2010-11-23 01:00 (UTC) (Link)
ta missus! *hugs*
(Deleted comment)
caluk at 2010-11-24 20:01 (UTC) (Link)
Like I said, this really wasn't what I was expecting to write with this remix - I was going for 'Dean stuck in a well', but then... Muriel's a fascinating character, and it was great to try and see what may have made her change her mind.
Thank you for the comment! SO glad you liked it...!
(Oh, and what other fic is she in? I thought I'd read most of yours, but I'm not brilliant at navigating LJ, so I may have missed tons!)
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