Sam couldn’t bring himself to sleep at all last night, it was hard enough just sneaking back into the room without being confronted by a sleep-deprived Dean. As much as it bothered him to avoid the issue at hand, his determination was completely focused on Kay Forster. There was something about her condition that just didn’t sit well with him. In his years of hunting with his brother, he’d never come across a case as puzzling as this woman’s. But a challenge was always good for the brain.
Browsing quietly on his laptop, occasionally glancing back at Dean whenever he made a snoring sound, Sam suddenly found an article that immediately struck his interest. Clicking into the file, the silence in the room broke as the mattress of the bed where the older Winchester was resting creaked nosily. Lifting his eyes up he’d realized the groggily irritable expression staring back at him, eyes partially open.
“When did you get in?” Dean mumbled, rubbing the sleep from his face.
Sam lowered his eyes back to the computer screen. “A few hours ago… needed some air.” He started punching the keys on his laptop, voice stale. “Sorry, I didn’t mean to wake you.”
“Ah don’t worry about it,” he shrugged, scooting over to the edge of the bed, “I was right in the middle of making out with that chic from Transformers, so why would I mind?”
“Well since you’re up there’s something here I think you should see. I don’t know what it means yet but…something about it feels like it might be connected to Kay’s condition.”
Dean could barely escape a yawn, stretching out his limbs. “Yah I think you better read it out to me. I’m kinda still caught between reality and Megan Fox’s lips.”
Sam gave his brother scrutinized look, and then went back to his computer. “It says here two nights ago over in Kings County, NY, seventeen-yr old Susie Campbell committed suicide by jumping off the roof of her house. She was being treated for Social Anxiety Disorder.”
“What a surprise.” Dean stressed, “An adolescent head-case takes the swan dive and how is this related to our hunt again?”
“Well don’t you think it’s strange that this girl killed herself the same night Sarah found Kay on the roof, hysterical?” Sam sharply informed his brother. “I don’t know if she was being pushed the same way Kay was but…we definitely can’t overlook this. I mean look here, there’ve been several other cases of suicide occurring in different parts of the city for the last two years. All the victims were people suffering from certain aspects of depression.”
“Okay so they’re all severely depressed,” Dean critically rolled his green eyes. “That’s not supernatural that’s just a bunch a pathetic pansies feeling sorry for themselves. Sammy you gotta do better than this to impress me.”
“Dean, all these people died during the last two years.” He glared vaguely at his brother, “Kay Forster moved here two years ago, that’s when all this started.”
“So… what, maybe there’s some kind of demon in this city screwing with these people’s heads, making them take the big leap of faith?”
“But if it’s a demon doing all this then…why is it just tormenting Kay?” Sam pondered.
Sam’s cell phone vibrated annoyingly in his jacket pocket, interrupting the brotherly brainstorming. For some reason the first thing that popped in his mind before he flipped it open was… something happened…. Usually when you get a call before the sun hits the sky; it implies some form of bad news.
“Hello?” he answered.
“Sam! Sam, oh my god!” Sarah was practically hyperventilating into his ear. Sam could almost feel her shaking against the receiver.
“Sarah, what’s wrong?”
“Sam its Kay!” she sobbed, voice barely stable. “She’s…we’re at the hospital! Can you come down?”
Sam struggled to contain his rational thoughts, the last thing Sarah needed was someone else falling apart on her. Dean’s eyes widened, almost about to lunge off the bed for his car keys, but his brother glared at him to stay where he was.
“Okay, take it easy, calm down,” he said gently, “Sarah…just tell me what happened?”
“I don’t know Kay just…there’s cuts all over arms! It’s really bad Sam! Please, I’m really scared for her! Can you come down here?”
The determination collected in his voice as he gripped the phone tighter against his cheek. “Hold on we’re coming, what hospital are you guys at?”
Sam and Dean frantically pushed their way through the doors of Little Falls Hospital, not a far drive from the place they were staying at. Dean was anxious to know about Kay’s condition since he’d heard she’d been omitted. Although he had no control over what happened, failing to win over her trust seemed to eat at him. Kay was just an innocent girl being horribly tormented something and there was nothing he could do to prevent it. It was like all those times Dean promised to protect Sam from the monsters lurking in the dark, but the reality was his brother was an adult who couldn’t be saved from everything…not even from the devil himself.
Their eyes lifted with optimistic expressions as they saw Sarah rushing down the hall to meet them. Sam caught her in his long arms just as she jumped into them.
“I’m so glad you’re here.” She sobbed against his coat. “Thanks for coming down here so quickly.”
“How is she?” Dean asked impatiently, jingling his keys in his jacket-pocket.
Sarah disengaged herself from Sam’s embrace, gravely looking back at the other handsome but slightly shorter Winchester. Her eyes were as red as her face; it was obvious to Dean that she’d been crying for a while.
“The doctors finally got her stabilized but…they’re confused as to what exactly pushed her to cut herself the way she did. This is not like her!” Sarah was getting defensive. “Kay’s not a suicidal person I swear!”
“Did you see anything or hear anything else in the room with Kay before you found her?” Sam asked scratching above his eyebrow.
Sarah shook her head. “No, I walked in the room and found her on the bathroom floor covered in glass…bleeding to death… Sam what’s doing this to her?”
“I don’t know.” He answered gruffly, following her and his brother to the hospital room where Kay was lying down. “But Dean and I think it might be a…some sort of demon, we’re not sure.”
The expression on her face when Sam glanced at her reaction was almost skeptical. “A demon?”
“Yah don’t get all excited just yet.” Dean threw in sarcastically as they approached Kay’s bedside.
Her arms were wrapped in thick white bandages, still at her sides almost lifeless. Above Kay’s eyebrow where it was bluish black, Dean could see blood seeping through a small gash underneath the cotton of her band aid. For an instant he pictured Lisa or Ben lying there…broken…torn up and it gave him a sickening feeling. Out all the places he never wanted to see them at…it was always going to be the hospital.
“How long has she been asleep?” Dean asked inquisitively, gently touching her bandaged arm.
“About three hours,” Sarah answered swiftly, wiping her eyes with her sleeves. She felt comforted having Sam Winchester’s arm slung protectively around her shoulders. “I haven’t been able to sleep since she’s been here. I’m afraid if I do…she won’t wake up.”
Sam felt like Sarah earned a break from watching over Kay all night. She was so sore and distressed from all the worrying and panicking, the Winchesters offered to keep an eye on her friend while she went to get a coffee from the cafeteria.
“So what kind of demon are we looking at here?” Dean referred at his brother for an explanation. He wasn’t in the mood to be pleasant. “Common Sammy, find me some ugly son of a bitch right now cause I want a piece of it!”
“Dean, I have no clue where to start,” Sam discouraged, crossing his strong arms. “I wouldn't even know where to look, this girl looks like she’s been tortured to death… But if a demon didn’t do this to Kay and those other victims…then what possesses any of them to do it?”
“It’s not a demon possessing this young girl,” informed a raspier but gentle voice behind the Winchester brothers.
Sam and Dean were relieved though resentful to see their trench coat-wearing, blue-eyed nerd angel of the lord standing in the corner of the room, almost as lifeless as a statue.
“Cas? You sure picked a hell of a time to blink your ass on down here”, Dean snorted. “What, got tired of being God’s sheriff bitch yet?”
Castiel ignored his human friend’s remark, approaching the boys with sincerity in his voice. “I know you’ve been angry with me Dean. And I know you must feel like I’ve abandoned you in some way, I wish there was something I could say to make it right. But I’m here to help you now as it is…very important.”
“Where did Cas go Dean?” Sam suddenly asked, baffled to what the reason would be considering how little his brother talked about it.
“Oh where else, up to Never Neverland,” retorted Dean cynically, folding his leather-jacket arms over his chest. Over a year of hearing nothing from his favorite guardian angel was enough to piss anyone off, especially when he left shortly after Sam took a plunge into the pit. Sam was gone and he needed Cas to be there…but he wasn’t. “So… what brings you back down to the land of the little people?”
“Just here on another mission I’m afraid,” Cas replied softly. Then he glared suspiciously at Sam, “Although as much as I’m thrilled to see your brother alive and well…how did he manage to escape Lucifer?”
The brother’s exchanged confused looks. “What, you mean you had nothing to do with Sammy’s resurrection?” asked Dean.
“No, which means something else wanted you alive Sam.” Replied the angel; observing the taller Winchester brother. “What do you remember from when you first arrived back on earth?”
He shook his shaggy head of hair. “Not much…still kind of a blur to me…” quickly avoiding anymore tension from Dean, Sam switched their attention back to the injured Kay Forster asleep in the bed, “Now…Cas you said a demon wasn’t possessing this girl to hurt herself… do you know what’s wrong with her then?”
The angel sighed, pacing towards the girl’s bed. His eyes were severe with a hint of sadness as he carefully brushed some of her dark hair away from her face. “Yes… I do” he said hastily, and then his gaze pierced the boys like a knife.
“She’s an Empath…”