The Winchesters got Sharon set up in the girls’ hotel room and completely safeguarded her inside. Sam poured salt along every windowsill and in front of the hotel room door. He even made a circle of salt around the bathtub drain, just in case. Samantha sat beside Sharon, talking soothingly to her. “It’s okay. Just don’t go past the salt and you’ll be fine.”

“What if it comes through the wall?” asked Sharon fearfully.

Sam cocked the shotgun and handed it to her. “That’s what this is for. It’s full of rock salt. Just aim and fire.”

Samantha snapped a set of cartridges into her handgun. “And this one’s got iron rounds. Here’s the safety. Remember to turn it off before you try to shoot.” She handed the gun to Sharon. “Don’t worry, we’ll just be in the next room. We’ll hear if anything happens.”

“Don’t’ break the salt lines,” Sam reminded her. “And don’t let anyone I if they don’t knock first.”

Sharon nodded obediently and sat on D’s bed. “Thanks, Sam,” she said sincerely.

Sam smiled tightly at her as he and Samantha left, closing and locking the door behind them.

Dean and D were standing out by Dean’s impala. D’s face was dark and furious, glaring at Dean. The sky was dark from the thick cloud cover, even though it was already eight in the morning. A few drops of rain began to fall, completing the depressing mood created by the atmosphere. “It ate it!” D shouted at Dean. “Your freaking car ate my tape!” She waved her Kansas cassette under Dean’s nose, the unwound, broken tape flying in his face.

“It’s not my fault!” he growled defensively.

“It was your crap car that ruined it,” D snarled, getting in his face by standing on tiptoe.

“What did you call it?” said Dean, ticked off and highly offended.

“Crap car, crap car, crap car!”

Dean clenched his jaws and glared at her. Then he hollered, “That does it! Sam, we’re getting the hell out of here.”

Sam, who, along with Samantha, had been highly amused by the argument, asked sensibly, “How? We don’t even know how we got here.”

Dean yanked the driver’s door open and shouted, “That’s your job to figure it out.”

Sam folded his arms and stayed where he was, next to Samantha. Dean glared at him. “Well?”

Sam shook his head. “No. We’re in the middle of a job right now, Dean.”

Dean gave him a “what-the-hell-are-you-talking-about?” look. “What case? This is their case, not ours. We’ve probably got something like this waiting for us back home.”

“I’m not sure about that,” Sam said thoughtfully.

Dean’s look changed from incredulity to curiosity. “You know something you’re not telling us?” He looked over at Samantha. “What’s he thinking?”

Sam and Samantha glanced at each other. Sam tilted his head slightly, giving Samantha permission to continue. Samantha shivered as an unseasonably cold wind blew. “Can we talk about this inside? It’s getting pretty nasty out here.”

And indeed it was. The sky was black as night, the wind was howling, and the four of them barely got inside before the rain began pouring in sheets. Thunder shook the hotel room.

D grudgingly chucked her ruined cassette tape into the boys’ trash can and sat at the table, brooding. She glared at Dean, standing by the door. “Twenty years my dad had that,” she growled, “and then I had it for the last five, and it was in perfect condition. Two minutes in your car and it’s crap.”

“That’s enough,” Samantha said sternly.

D sat back in her chair and folded her arms, staring mutely out the rain-slashed window.

“So what’s this theory you’ve got?” asked Dean. He strode across the room to snatch up a complimentary bag of potato chips that the maid had left on the dresser. He looked up at Sam and Samantha, both sitting on Sam’s bed.

“All I can think of,” D said, still staring out the window, “is a shapeshifting ghost.”

“Yeah, but spirits that change form are the stuff of legends,” Dean pointed out, “just like vampires that are scared of crosses.”

D nodded in agreement. “Besides,” she said, looking up at him, “the silver bullets had no effect on her. Now, if she was a shapeshifter, dead or not, silver should do something to her.”

“But if she’s not a shapeshifter, how can she look like a living person?” wondered Dean.

While they were talking, Sam had opened his laptop and was typing hurriedly. He asked D gingerly, “You know a Castiel, too, don’t you?”

D smiled slightly. “Yeah, I know Cas.”

“What does he look like?”

D had a somewhat dreamy look. “Very handsome, incredibly sexy- ooh, and when he takes his shirt off, mmm…”

Dean cleared his throat and Sam squirmed uncomfortably. Samantha rolled her eyes. “He just wants the facts, Juliet.”

D frowned at her. “Bitch.”


Dean’s laugh came out as a muffled snort. Sam did his best to hide a smile and failed miserably in the attempt.

D, still frowning, answered Sam, “Bright blue eyes, not quite six feet tall, almost black hair, squarish face…”

Dean shrugged and looked back at Sam. “So her Cas looks like ours. So what? If we’re in a parallel worlds, it only seems to make sense. What does it have to do with this freaky Parent Trap spoof?”

Sam looked at Samantha anxiously, knowing how incredible his theory was. “Well, I had to make sure of something first, before I told you what I’m thinking.”

“So what is it?” D asked impatiently.

“Okay, so I was thinking… you know, it doesn’t seem like a coincidence that we met versions of ourselves here, and this girl is being haunted by a version of herself.”

Dean was worried by Sam’s words. “Sam, what are you saying?”

Samantha licked her lips and answered for him, “What we’re saying is, if people can travel between parallel worlds, maybe ghosts can, too.”