Dawning Power by kirallie
Summary: AU for both. SamDawn. What if Sam's college girlfriend was a certain ex-Key? Dawn left Sunnydale for Stanford wanting a fresh start. Will she be dragged back into her old life?
Categories: Buffy/Angel Crossovers > Supernatural, Buffy/Angel Crossovers Characters: None
Genres: Action/Adventure, AU, Romance
Warnings: Het
Challenges: None
Series: None
Chapters: 6 Completed: No Word count: 13606 Read: 71852 Published: 2010.03.11 Updated: 2010.06.10
Story Notes:
Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.

1. Chapter 1 by kirallie

2. Chapter 2 by kirallie

3. Chapter 3 by kirallie

4. Chapter 4 by kirallie

5. Chapter 5 by kirallie

6. Chapter 6 by kirallie

Chapter 1 by kirallie
Author's Notes:
Looks like this is one of my few non slash fics. Wow. Main pairing SamDawn. Au. Mentions of main character death
Sam went bright red as the young girl stared at him in shock. How could he have been so clumsy?

“I am so sorry. Please let me help you with that. Um, would you like a new drink? I can pay for it.” He rushed out, handing her a bundle of napkins and she grinned, giggling softly.

“Its okay, no real harm down. But thanks for the napkins.” She answered as she cleaned off as much of the liquid as she could and then pushed her hair behind her ears.

“I’m still really sorry about this.” Sam said again and then saw the books she was holding.
“Stanford?” He asked with a grin and she nodded.

“Me too. Haven’t seen you around here before. Oh, I’m Sam.” He extended his hand and she took it.

“Dawn. It’s my first year here but I’m guessing you’ve been here for longer?”

“Third year. You’re sure I can’t do anything to make up for this?” He asked and she smiled at him.

“Well....you could show me where the Cantor Arts Center is please? I’m kind of lost.” She admitted and Sam smiled.

“Sure, I’ve got time till my next class so I’ll walk you.” He offered and Dawn nodded, walking beside him. Sam took the time to study the teen? He figured since she was a first year she’d be eighteen, maybe nineteen. She was tall and willowy with long brown hair tied back in a ponytail and blue eyes.
“So are you from around here?” He asked and she looked at him for a moment before answering. He wanted to hit himself, he did not want to come off as the creepy older guy type, he was just curious and honestly he liked what he’d seen of her so far.

“Small town a couple of hours south of LA actually, you?”

“Kansas originally but we travelled a lot.”

“Sounds fun. Family?”

“Um. Just my Dad and older brother. You?”

“No-show Dad who I think might still be in Spain.” She shrugged and he winced, okay so that wasn’t a good topic for either of them. It was nice that he didn’t have to walk much slower than usual and she was keeping up easily.
“I haven’t seen him in something like ten years so it doesn’t bother me anymore.”

“Still sorry for asking.”

“Hey I asked first.” She pointed out with a grin and Sam smiled back.

“True, well here we are. It was nice meeting you Dawn.” He fidgeted slightly, not really knowing what to do.

“You too Sam. Here.” She passed him a piece of paper and he looked at it to see her name and a phone number.
“If you want to talk or anything.” With that she was gone. Sam stared at the paper and then slipped it into his pocket with a small smile.

--------------------------------
“At least this time I didn’t have a drink in my hand.” An amused voice said and Sam looked down to see Dawn sprawled at his feet.

“Dawn I am so sorry.” He offered her a hand and she took it, letting him help her up.

“No problem. Guess it’s hard to see us normal sized people from so high up.” She teased and Sam blushed slightly.

“You’re not that short Dawn.”

“Five foot seven and you’re what? A foot taller?”

“No.” She stared at him and he sighed.
“Fine, Six four.” He admitted and she grinned.

“See, nearly a foot taller.” She teased him and Sam grinned back at her, Dawn’s humour was a nice change from the others he usually hung out with.

“So, lost again?”

“Nope. Just finished my Latin class and am headed back to my room. You?”

“Same, except I was in calculus and not Latin.”

“Ewe, maths. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not bad at it, it’s just boring most of the time.”

“Agreed.” Sam told her and then took a deep breath.
“Have you eaten yet?” Dawn’s eyes widened in surprise but she shook her head.

“Not yet.”

“Would you like to join me for dinner then? Just to talk, get to know each other? Since we keep bumping into each other.” Sam stumbled over his words and then waited for her answer.

“Sounds nice.” She told him and Sam relaxed.
“I should dump my stuff first.”

“Okay, um....” Sam trailed off, not sure what he was meant to do.

“Walk me to my place?” She asked and he smiled.

“Sure. Where are you staying?”

“Wilbur Hall. Where do you want to eat?” She asked as they headed for her residence hall.

“I was thinking the Axe and Palm?”

Sounds good to me.” She answered with a smile.

-------------------------------
Dawn hummed softly as she sat at her desk, working on an assignment. She’d been nervous about coming to Stanford at first, leaving Sunnydale and the Scoobies behind. But it had been what she needed and she realised that now. She couldn’t heal and move on when she was constantly surrounded by reminders of her Mom and Buffy. Willow hadn’t wanted to let her go but Tara had stood up to Willow on her behalf. Xander had just hugged her and said to call if she needed anything. Giles had given her enough money to live off for the first two years and the numbers of a few ex-Council members in the area in case anything happened and she needed immediate help.

Four months later and she was finally sleeping the whole night through without nightmares of the tower or of seeing her mother dead on the couch. She didn’t even patrol, not that she was meant to alone but she couldn’t not help keep people safe. However, unlike the campus in Sunnydale there was very little supernatural activity at Stanford.

One of the high points of her time at Stanford? Sam Winchester. Sure he was nearly three years older than her but that was nothing compared to the gap between Xander and Anya or Buffy and Angel. He was a great guy, a little shy and awkward at times but a good person. Not to mention a great sparring partner. The look on his face when she’d pinned him in their first match because he was holding back had been hilarious. And he liked her for Dawn Summers, not the Key or the Slayers Sister or even trainee Wiccan but just for who she was without all that. It made a nice change. Sure she knew he had secrets but who didn’t? He liked talking about his family about the same as she did. She knew he’d had a fight before coming to school and he knew he mom and sister were dead and that was about it.

They’d also started dating three weeks ago and it was great! It was nice having a human boyfriend and yes she had checked. Sam definitely had a pulse, could touch silver, all those wonderful things that meant human. So there would be no having to stake him like her first kiss. What a date that had been, her first kiss and staking all in one night and with the same person, well vampire. She knew eventually she’d have to tell Sam everything but for no she could forget about that life and just enjoy their time together. Sam was so sweet and loving, even if he didn’t really seem to know what he was doing when it came to dates but that didn’t bother her because they always had fun.

--------------------------------------
Sam smiled as he looked down at where Dawn was resting against his chest. His life had changed so much since coming to Stanford but this biggest change had been meeting Dawn. And now they were talking about getting a place together for the summer and living as a couple during the college year, he couldn’t help grinning at that thought. Dawn was the best thing to happen to him in a long time. She was warm, caring and had a great sense of humour. She could also kick his ass if he didn’t pay attention when sparring and hadn’t that been a shock.

Dawn didn’t talk much about her life before Stanford but then neither did he. He knew the basics, how her sister and mother were dead and her dad was absent but that was pretty much it. She had suggested he at least call his Dad and Dean because she’d had a fight with her sister shortly before she’d died and had carried the guilt over it for years now. He knew she was right, for all he knew something had happened to either or both of them. But thinking about them hurt, how his Dad had told him not to come back. Sure Dean had given him a lift to the bus stop and had called to make sure he’d made it to Stanford but that had pretty much been it other than an anonymous card every birthday since he’d left. Could he risk reaching out only to be ignored or told not to call again?

-------------------------
Sam gripped the phone tightly, his insides felt like they were tied in knots as he listened to the other end ring until voicemail kicked in. He took a deep breath and then spoke.

“Hey Dad it’s me, Sam. I know you said...I just wanted to make sure you’re okay and...I’m okay. School’s good. Even have a girlfriend. You’d like Dawn, she kicks my butt in a fight about half the time and no I’m not getting rusty she’s just that good. I don’t even know if you’re going to listen to this after everything. I guess...I miss you Dad and I’m sorry for the fight but I’m not sorry for leaving. I had to do this. I just wish you could accept that. You’ve got my number if you want to call. Bye Dad, stay safe.” Sam hung up and closed his eyes. That had been hard and he didn’t even know if his Dad would bother listening once he realised it was him calling. And his next call was going to be harder; he just hoped it would go to voicemail too.

“Hello?” Sam froze as Dean picked up and opened his mouth but nothing came out.
“Hello? Someone there or not? This better not be some prank call or I swear.”

“Dean.” Sam cut in and the other side went dead.
“Are you still there?” He asked nervously and smiled as he heard Dean huff in annoyance.


“I’m here Sam. What’s wrong?” Dean asked tightly and Sam smiled, typical Dean.

“Nothing, I just....I needed to hear your voice, know you’re okay. Even left Dad a message, don’t know if he’ll listen.” Sam rushed out and he heard Dean chuckle slightly.

“You are such a girl.” Dean teased and Sam relaxed, he’d been afraid Dean would hang up on him or worse.

“Am not, it’s just I hadn’t heard from you and was worried maybe something had happened and if you were using fake insurance then no one would call me or anything.”

“Sammy calm down. We’re fine bitch. You sure you’re okay?”

“Yeah, I’m good. I’m even...well I’m moving in with someone this summer.” Sam told him and he heard Dean whistle.

“A girl someone?”

“Yeah, her name’s Dawn and she’s great Dean. Maybe...if you’re on a hunt out this way or something....you could come see us? I know she’d like to meet you, Dad too if you could convince him to come.” Sam was hesitant to ask, afraid Dean would turn him down. Talking on the phone was one thing but coming out to see him?

“She’s that special huh?” Dean asked and Sam grinned.

“Yeah. I miss you Dean. I...I could come see you during the holidays if you’re going to be in one place for a few days?” Sam offered nervously.

“Nah, looks like there could be a hunt couple hours north of you. No point you trying to track me down.” Sam’s heart soared with hope.

“So you’ll come?” He whispered.

“Yeah Sammy, I’ll come. I’ll call once the job’s done, okay?”

“That’s fine...great actually. I’ll see you soon then.”

“Yeah, I’ll work on Dad but....”

“I know. Bye Dean.”

“Bye.” Sam put his phone down and grinned. The door opened and he looked up to see Dawn walk in. He stood up and picked her up; swing her around until they were both laughing and too dizzy to stand. They collapsed back onto the couch and tried to remember how to breath.

“What was that all about?” Dawn asked and Sam kissed her.

“Dean’s coming. He’s got some work nearby and is going to come see me and meat you.” Sam explained and Dawn grinned before kissing him.

“That’s great Sam. I suppose we should finish getting this place set up then?” She arched an eyebrow and looked around at the still partially packed boxes. Sam smiled sheepishly but nodded and they got to work.

--------------------------------
Dean parked the Impala and stared up at the apartment building in front of him. It had been over three years since he’d really seen Sammy and now here he was, not to check from a distance but to see Sam and meet his girl. Was he ready to forgive Sam for running away? Sam had sounded so...young and alone on the phone that Dean hadn’t been able to say no. No matter how mad he still was at Sam for abandoning them, leaving him. The building was nice, well looked after even if it wasn’t exactly modern. And sitting in the car all day wasn’t going to help any. Signing he got out and headed for the front door, already knowing which apartment he needed. Taking a deep breath he knocked on the door.

Dean found himself grinning at the young woman who answered the door. She wasn’t much shorter than him and held herself in a way that said she was very capable of taking care of herself.

“You must be Dawn, nice to meet you.” He greeted and she smiled.

“Nice to meet you too Dean.” She stepped back and let him into the apartment.
“Sam had to run and turn a paper in but he’ll be back in a few minutes. Can I get you anything?” She asked as she showed him to the living room.

“Any beer?” He asked and she nodded, leaving the room and returning with an unopened can.
“Thanks.” He took a drink, watching as she sat on the couch. How on earth did his brother get such a hot looking girl?
“You are way out of his league.” Dean murmured and she shot him a glare. Oops.
“Sorry. Sometimes I say stuff....” He shrugged and she nodded with a small smile.

“So Sam’s not the only one that can be socially awkward?” She asked and Dean chuckled.

“Guess not. How’d you two meet?”

“He spilt my soda all over me.” She answered with a grin and Dean laughed.

“Real smooth Sammy.” He commented and she nodded.

“He knocked me over the second time. Then we had dinner.” Dean shook his head, unable to believe his brother had done that and Dawn was still willing to talk to him.
“He’s missed you.” She added quietly.
“He doesn’t talk about family much but he has a picture of your parents and one of the two of you together beside the bed. He was so happy when you agreed to come. Don’t you dare disappear after this.” She told him, a rather intimidating glare on her face and Dean nodded.

“Can’t promise visits but I’ll call.” They fell silent as a key was heard in the door, both turning to watch it open. Dean practically held his breath as the door swung open and he got his first really good look at his brother in years. Sam looked like he’d been running, a look of hope on his face and Dean realised he’d seen the Impala outside. Hazel eyes scanned over Dawn and then locked onto him. Dean mustered a hesitant smile and then Sam was striding across the room towards him. When had the kid gotten so big? Sure he’d been tall when he’d left but it had been a scrawny tall and now...he’d grown into his height. Dean gasped as Sam grabbed him in a fierce hug but then returned it.

“You’re here.” Sam murmured and Dean swallowed, closing his eyes as he realised how much Sam had been hurting as well.

“I’m here Sammy.” He told his brother, smiling as he saw Dawn slip out of the room to give them privacy. He was really liking that girl.

TBC...
Chapter 2 by kirallie
“Sam! Get a move on would ya? We were supposed to be there like 15 minutes ago. Sam! You coming or what?" Dawn called as she put the finishing touches on her makeup.

“Do I have to?” Sam asked as he poked his head around the door and Dawn smiled.

“Yes. It’ll be fun. I’m not even making us wear costumes so get over it and get a move one Mister.” She scolded and Sam finally came into the bedroom to see that Dawn wasn’t wearing a costume either. Instead she was wearing black jeans, low heeled boots and a green top. Sam scoffed softly.

“You know how I feel about Halloween.” He answered and Dawn sighed.

“It’s not my favourite holiday either you know. But we said we’d go Sam.” She answered, reaching out to wrap her arms around him and Sam returned the embrace.

“Alright.” He gave in and she smiled, reaching up to give him a quick kiss. Sam was smiling as they left for the bar where the party was being held.

“So here’s to Sam and his awesome LSAT victory.” Dawn cheered, raising her glass of Coke.

“All right, all right it’s not that big a deal.” Sam tried to argue, blushing ever so slightly.

“He acts all humble but he scored a 174.” She told their friends who grinned.

“Is that good?” Maria, a girl from Dawn’s classes asked and Dawn nodded.

“Scary good.” She answered proudly.

“See there you go, you are first-round draft pick. You can go to any law school you want.” Nick pointed out with a grin; they already knew he was leaving for medical school next year.

“Actually I got an interview here…Monday. If it goes ok I think I got a shot at a full ride next year.” Sam answered to cheers.

“Hey it’s gonna go great.” Dawn assured him softly, squeezing his hand.

“It better.” Sam mumbled and Dawn grinned at him.

“How does it feel to be the golden boy in your family?” Maria asked with a sly smile and Dawn shot her a mild glare.

“Ah, they don’t know yet.” Sam admitted, he’d meant to call Dean earlier but hadn’t had time. He still hadn’t heard anything from his Dad though Dean seemed to think his voicemails were being listened to.

“Don’t know? I would be gloating! Why not?” Marie pushed.

“Cause we’re not exactly the Brady’s.” Sam admitted and then smiled.
“I need to tell my brother later.”

“And I’m not exactly the Huxtables. More shots?” Nick and Maria headed for the bar.

“No, no.” Sam yelled after them but was ignored.

“Seriously, I’m proud of you and your gonna knock them dead on Monday and you’re gonna get that full ride. I know it.” Dawn told him softly, moving closer to lean into him.

“What would I do without you?” He asked softly and she kissed him.

“Keep tripping into people.” She answered with a laugh. Maria and Nick returned with more shots and another Coke for Dawn which she sniffed first to make sure no alcohol had been added, after Buffy’s fun time with beer and seeing Xander’s parents there was no way she was drinking. She didn’t mind Sam drinking, he never allowed himself to go as far as getting drunk so it didn’t bother her but she didn’t want to drink herself and Sam respected that.

-------------------------------
“Sam?” He rolled over and motioned for her to be quiet.

“Stay here.” He whispered and then headed out into the main part of their apartment, leaving a grouchy Dawn behind in their bedroom. Hearing the floorboards creak he froze and then saw a shadow move into the room. He grabbed the man and they started fighting. Sam finally ended up bind beneath the intruder.

“Whoa, easy, tiger.” Dean said as he pinned Sam to the floor. Sam just stared at him in shock.

“Dean?” Sam asked, surprised to see his brother who had only visited that once though they talked fairly regularly. Dean laughed at him and Sam relaxed, breathing heavily from the exertion of their fight.
“You scared the crap out of me.” Sam told him.

“That’s cause you’re out of practice.” Dean taunted and Sam moved. This time it was Dean that was pinned to the floor, making Dean laugh again.

“Or not…Get off me.” Dean urged and Sam got up, offering Dean a hand up.

“Dean, what the hell are you doing here?” Sam asked in annoyance now that the adrenaline was wearing off.

“Well I was looking for a beer.” Was the flippant answer.

“What the hell are you doing here?” Sam asked again, not in the mood for teasing since it was two in the morning.

“Okay, all right, we gotta talk.” Dean told him and Sam stared at him.

“Uh, the phone?” He suggested and then winced, he had honestly meant to call Dean before going to bed but he’d been very tired when they’d gotten back from the party.

“Face to face talk Sam.” Dean told him seriously.

“Oh, I um actually meant to call last night anyway. Got my scores back.”

“Really? You passed right?” Dean asked, letting Sam tell his good news before he had to break the bad to the kid.

“Yea, got an interview with the Law School on Monday morning, looks like I could get a free ride.” Sam told him and Dean could see his brothers smile even in the dark. He felt a swell of pride for Sam and then spun, ready to fight, as the lights turned on.

“Sam? Dean, why didn’t you call and say you were coming?” Dawn greet5ed when she saw the older man. To his surprise and pleasure she gave him a brief hug before moving to Sam’s side.

“Something sort of came up. I need to borrow Sam for a bit, family stuff.” Dean answered, smiling at the young woman who had stolen his brother’s heart. They’d talked a few times on the phone when he’d rung and Sam had been out and he really liked her.

“No. No. Whatever you wanna say you can say it in front of her.” Sam argued, wrapping an arm around Dawn’s waist.

“Okay. Um…dad hasn’t been home in a few days.” Dean tried, hoping Sam would get the hint.

“So he’s working over-time on a “Miller Time” shift; he’ll stumble back in sooner or later.” Sam answered and Dean sighed.

“Dad’s on a hunting trip and he hasn’t been home in a few days.” Dean tried again, stressing the word hunting and watched Sam’s eyes widen.

“Dawn, excuse us. We have to go outside.” Sam said, looking down at her with a smile before heading outside with Dean. Dawn huffed and then went to the window, watching as they emerged and went to Dean’s car. Something weird was going on and it had to do with their Dad and hunting. But did she have the right to push for answers when she was still keeping a rather big part of her life secret? She sighed and headed into the kitchen to make coffee; figuring Dean would need it since it seemed he’d been up all night. Hearing the door and then Sam going into their bedroom she followed him to see Sam packing a duffle bag.

“Wait you’re taking off? Is this about your dad? Is he all right?” Dawn asked, really worried now about what was going on.

“Yeah, you know, just a little family drama.” Sam tried to brush it off as nothing but Dawn knew better.

“But Dean said he was on some kind of a hunting trip.” She pushed a bit for details.

“Aw yeah, he’s just deer hunting up at the cabin and he’s probably got Jim, Jack, and Jose along with him. We’re just gonna go bring him back.” Sam answered and she swallowed, knowing he was lying.

“What about the interview?” She asked softly as Sam closed his bag and turned to her with a small smile.

“I’ll make the interview. This is only for a couple of days.” Sam told her before heading for the door.

“Sam, I mean, please, just stop for a second. You sure you’re okay?” She tried, grabbing his arm and Sam looked down at her before kissing her softly.

“I’m fine.”He assured her softly when they parted.
“Hey, everything’s gonna be okay. I will be back in time-I promise.” He gave her another kiss and then left the apartment.

“At least tell me where you’re going!” She yelled after him but there was no answer. Dawn sighed and went to turn the coffee off before heading back to bed though she doubted she’d get anymore sleep.

Sure enough she stared at the ceiling until the alarm went off and then trudged to the shower, using the cold water to shock any sleep out of her system. She dressed for the day, ate breakfast and then headed for the bookshop she’d gotten a part-time job at to help pay for their apartment since she wanted Giles’ money to last as long as possible.

---------------------------------
Dean came out of the gas station to see Sam sitting sideways in his seat, flipping through Dean’s box of cassettes. He waved some breakfast bars and juice at Sam.

“Hey, you want breakfast?” He asked and Sam looked up at him.

“No thanks. So how’d you pay for that stuff? You and dad still running credit card scams?” Sam asked and Dean shrugged.

“Yeah well…hunting ain’t exactly a pro-ball career. Besides, all we do is apply, it’s not our fault they send us the cards.” He answered with a grin as he got into the driver’s seat, watching Sam roil his eyes.

“Yeah and what names did you write on the application this time?” Sam asked, fighting an amused smile.

“Uh…Bert Aframian and his son, Hector. Scored two cards out of the deal.” Dean grinned and Sam finally broke, smiling at Dean’s answer and the odd names.

“Sounds about right. I swear man; you gotta update your cassette-tape collection.” Sam teased and Dean relaxed, happy to have Sam back beside him on a hunt. He’d missed the kid, not that he’d tell him that.

“Why?”

“ Well for one they are cassette tapes, and two—Black Sabbath? Motorhead? Metallica? It’s the greatest hits of mullet rock.” Sam answered as he pulled a few of the tapes out with a grimace.

“House rules, Sammy. Driver picks the music, shotgun shuts his cake hole.” Dean told him as he put a tape in.

“You know Sammy is a chubby 12 year old. It’s Sam, okay?” Sam argued.

“I’m sorry, I can’t hear you. The music’s too loud.” He pulled out of the gas station and grinned as he spotted a sign saying 7miles to Jericho. He saw Sam smile and relax back into the seat as well and all was well with his world, other than their Dad being missing.

-----------------------------
Dawn dumped her things and then grabbed the phone, dialling Sam’s cell from memory only to sigh as there was no answer.

“Hey Sam it’s me. Just wanted to see how things are going. Find your Dad yet? Tell Dean not to give you too much of a hard time or I’ll get him back for you. I love you Sam, hurry home. I’ll call again tomorrow, bye.” She hung up and then went to work on an assignment, turning the radio on to drown out the silence.

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“Fake 911 phone call Sammy? I don’t know, that’s pretty illegal.” Dean praised from the phone booth.

“You’re welcome.” Sam answered, phone held to one ear as he drove.

“Listen, we gotta talk.”

“Tell me about it. So the husband was unfaithful, we are dealing with a woman in white. She’s buried behind her old house. So that should have been dad’s next stop.” Sam started.

“Sammy would you shut up for a second.” Dean cut in.

“I just can’t figure out why he hasn’t destroyed the corpse yet.” Sam continued as he drove.

“Well that’s what I’m trying to tell you. He’s gone. Dad left Jericho.” Dean answered in annoyance.

“What? How do you know?” Sam asked worriedly

“I’ve got his journal.” Dean’s answer didn’t comfort either brother.

“He doesn’t go anywhere without that.” Sam pointed out hesitantly.

“Yeah, well he did this time.”

“What’s it say?” Sam asked, almost dreading the answer.

“Same old ex-marine crap when he wants to let us know where he’s going.” Dean grumbled and Sam smiled even though his brother couldn’t see it.

“Coordinates. Where to?”

“I’m not sure yet.” Dean answered.

“I don’t understand, I mean what could be so important that dad would just skip out in the middle of a job? Dean, what the hell is going on? Whoa!” Sam dropped his cell and slammed on the breaks to avoid hitting the woman in front of the Impala.

“Sam? Sam!” Dean screamed into the phone.

“Take me home.” Sam looked back to see Constance in the back seat.

-----------------------------
Dawn put the plate of cookies out with a small smile, Willow and Tara had given her that recipe and Sam loved them. She’d made two batches since she wasn’t sure if Dean or even their Dad would be with them. That done she headed for the bedroom only to freeze as the wards trembled. Hiding the warding symbols from Sam hadn’t been easy but she’d managed and now she was glad she had as something began to break them. She ran to the bedroom, pulling out an old trunk that hadn’t been opened since she’d done the warding. She pulled out a short sword and a bottle of silvery powder, scanning for the intruder. The sword was a gift from Angel after she’d spent six months in LA learning how to use one off him and Faith. She tightened her grip on the handle as a man appeared in the bedroom and her skin crawled, whatever he was he was pure evil.

“What do you want?” She demanded and he laughed.

“Feisty, I like that. Won’t do you much good little girl. I need to send dear Sammy a message and you’re the perfect way, just like his dear mommy.” The man…no demon taunted and Dawn dropped her shields, letting her own magic flow through her as she prepared to fight. She really wished Willow and Tara were there for backup. The demon’s eyes widened in surprise as it felt her power and then it chuckled.
“Interesting, but it won’t help. You’re still going to die little witch.”

“Bet me.” She snarled and flung a spell at him which was deflected. Knowing she had no choice she reached deeper past the magic and into her very core. Pure emerald energy flooded through her, turning her eyes emerald as her hair whipped up around her with the energy of the Key let loose for the first time since she had realised it was still there after the Glory fiasco.

“What?” The demon demanded and then was forced on the defensive as it faced a power as old as time.

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Dean slammed on the breaks and they stared in shock for a second before Sam was scrambling for his door, terror etched on his face. Dean rushed to follow him.

“DAWN!” Sam screamed, searching wildly for his girlfriend. Dean pushed through the crowds beside him, searching desperately for the fiery girl that had become a friend to him.

“Dawn!” He added his cries to his brothers, praying she was alive.

“Over here!” A paramedic called and they ran over to the ambulance. Sam nearly collapsed in relief as he saw Dawn sitting on the gurney, hunched over and with an oxygen mask on her face as the paramedics checked her over.

“Dawn.” Sam called softly and she looked up, face covered in ash and blood from a small wound on her head. That didn’t stop her smiling and reaching a hand out to Sam who had to be pushed into actually moving. When he made it to the gurney he clung to her, smoothing her hair down and just listening to her breath.
“I thought I’d lost you.” He murmured and her arms came up to wrap around him.

“M’okay.” She said and then coughed. Sam looked to the nearby paramedic who nodded.

“Small hit to the head, looks like she fell while trying to get out. We want to take her in for a night of observation due to the smoke, just to be safe.” The man said and Sam nodded.
“You can ride with her if you’d like.” Sam nodded and looked to Dean.

“Go with Dawn Sammy, I’ll stay here to see what happened, get a hotel room and then join you.” Dean told him and Sam nodded, clambering up into the ambulance once Dawn was inside. Sam sat beside her, clutching her hand tightly and she smiled at him, slowly drifting off to sleep as the events of the evening caught up with her.

TBC...
Chapter 3 by kirallie
Dean watched from the door as Sam hovered over Dawn who was asleep on the hospital bed. The soot had been washed from her skin though she still had an oxygen mask on and the usual monitors. He stepped into the room and Sam looked up, managing a shaky smile.

“How is she?” He whispered as he took the chair beside Sam’s.

“Doctor said she’ll be fine, all the tests were clear so she can leave in the morning.” Sam told him and Dean relaxed. He liked Dawn and the thought of her dying was not one he liked.

“I got a motel, we should go before you get kicked out.” Dean offered and Sam frowned, hesitating.
“You need sleep Sammy, I can see you’re warded the room, she’ll be safe till morning.” Dena pushed and Sam slowly stood. Dean gently steered Sam out of the hospital and towards the Impala. Poor kid was asleep on his feet by the time they reached the motel. Dean had to take a lot of his baby brother’s weight on the walk to the door and then to the bed farthest from the door. He lay Sam down, pulled his boots off and then covered him with the blankets. He smiled at the sight, Sam looked so young asleep. He slipped into the bathroom, took a shower and then got into his own bed.

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Dawn was sitting on the edge of her bed when the brothers walked into her room the next morning, a doctor giving her one last check.

“Hey Dawn.” Sam called, moving to stand next to her and taking her hand.
“Is she okay?” He asked and the doctor nodded.

“She’s fine to be released. Keep an eye out for excessive coughing or tightness of chest. If you get any of that I want you to get straight to the ER, okay?”

“Yes doctor.” She answered, leaning into Sam’s side. The doctor left and Dawn stood, Sam hovering in case she needed help.

“Sam I’m fine, you don’t need to hover.” She chided softly, leaning up to kiss him. Sam held her close, burying his head in her hair.

“I was so scared Dawn, I thought I’d lost you.” He murmured and she wrapped her arms around his waist tightly.

“It’s okay Sam, I’m right here. Summers women are tougher than that.” Her comment made him chuckle and draw back.
“Don’t suppose you brought me any clothes?”

“Here Dawn.” Dean handed over the bag and she smiled at him.

“Thanks Dean. I’ll get dressed and then you’ll get me out of here?” She asked and Sam nodded. She slipped into the attached bathroom and Sam slumped into the chair he’d spent a good part of the night in.

“You okay Sammy?” Dean asked and his little brother shrugged.

“What happens now?” Sam asked softly.

“Personally I want to know why there’s a demon after you.” They turned to see Dawn in the bathroom doorway, dressed in the Stanford tracksuit and still braiding her hair.

“What?” Sam breathed in shock and Dean tensed where he was standing.

“Demon showed up last night, that’s why the apartment is now char broiled. It underestimated me and that’s the only reason I got out alive. And I don’t think we should discuss this anymore here.” She slipped her shoes on and headed for the door.
“Coming?” She asked and they slowly followed her to the lobby where she filled out her discharge papers and then they headed back to the motel. Dean watched as she easily crossed the salt line and various wards he’d set up the night before.

“Dawn? Why did you say demon?” Sam asked as Dawn sat on one of the room’s chairs.

“Because that’s what he was. And apparently he knows you Sam, killing me was meant to get to you. I felt him break the wards I’d put around the apartment so I had time to grab some things before he actually appeared.” She explained easily.

“What did he look like?”

“Human, older male except he had yellow eyes.” Both brothers stiffened at that and Dawn sighed.
“So you do know him. Sam what’s going on?”

“I....” Sam trailed off, staring down at the floor. Dawn looked from him to Dean who sighed but decided to answer.

“A demon with yellow eyes killed our mom when Sam was a baby. We’ve been hunting it ever since. How do you know about demons?” Dean demanded and it was Dawn’s turn to look pained.

“Because my sister and her friends fought them and I had a habit of being kidnapped as bait.” She answered softly.

“Your sister’s death?” Sam asked softly.

“Wasn’t an accident. She died saving my life.” Dawn answered just as softly. Sam winced and then walked over to her chair, pulling her up into a hug.

“Sorry Dawn.” He whispered and she smiled.

“Not your fault.” She answered.

“So your sister and her friends were hunters?” Dean asked and they separated from the hug.

“Hunters?” She shrugged.
“More like protection patrol. Sunnydale had nearly a fifty percent death rate when my family moved there, Buffy and the others got it down to thirty percent. After Buffy died it went up a bit again. I left for Stanford as soon as my forms arrived, night after night combat, my Mum and then Buffy dying, I had to leave. Been back once for Christmas first year, only phone calls since then, it’s just not the same. Guess we’ve both been hiding stuff, huh Sam?”

“Yeah.”

“So what happens now, cause I get the feeling that demon’s going to be back at some point?” She asked and watched the boys exchange looks.
“And no ditching me for my own safety. That things seen me and I got away alive when it wanted me dead, what colour should I paint the target on my back? Safety in numbers and all.” She pointed out sarcastically and Dean hid a laugh.

“Dad’s still missing, though he left us coordinates, I was planning on heading that way. I want you two to come with me. Dawn’s right, the demon knows about her now so she’ll be safer with us. I know you hate hunting Sam but if the demon wants you, you have no choice.” Dean argued and to his surprise Sam nodded.

“I know. I keep thinking about what would have happened if Dawn didn’t know about this stuff and it would have been my fault. I’ve gotten complacent and that nearly got Dawn killed.” Sam looked at her sadly and Dawn went to him, whispering that it wasn’t his fault.
“Before we go there’s something...I was planning to do this after the interview....and this is in no way the way I wanted to do this...Dawn thought Sam’s stammering was cute but Dean just found it annoying.

“Spit it out Sammy.” He groaned and Sam took a deep breath, dropping to one knee and pulling a small box from his pocket. Dean stared in shocked happiness, backing away to let them have their moment.

“Dawn Summers, will you marry me?” Sam asked nervously as Dawn stared at him. A brilliant smile slowly spread across her face and Dean grinned. Dawn let out a yell o0f joy and tackled Sam much to Dean’s amusement.

“Yes! Of course I’ll marry you Sam.” She answered and Sam grinned, taking the ring out and shakily slipping it onto her left ring finger.

“Way to go Sammy!” Dean congratulated, slapping Sam on the back as his brother stood up.
“Guess this means we’ve got a stop to make before hitting Colorado.

---------------------------------
“I Samuel Winchester, take you Dawn Summers, to be my wife. To share the good times and hard times side by side. I humbly give you my hand and my heart as a sanctuary of warmth and peace, and pledge my faith and love to you. Just as this circle is without end, my love for you is eternal. Just as it is made of incorruptible substance, my commitment to you will never fail. With this ring, I thee wed." Sam slid the slender white gold band onto her finger once Dean handed it to him.

“I, Dawn Summers, take you Samuel Winchester, to be my husband, my partner in life and my one true love. I will cherish our friendship and love you today, tomorrow, and forever I will trust you and honour you I will laugh with you and cry with you. I will love you faithfully through the best and the worst, through the difficult and the easy. What may come I will always be there. As I have given you my hand to hold so I give you my life to keep so help me Goddess.” Dawn slid the matching ring onto Sam’s finger after Tara handed it to her.

“Having thus pledged yourselves each to the other, I do now, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the state of Nevada, pronounce you husband and wife.” The civil official pronounced and Sam leaned in to kiss his new wife. Cheering rang out through the small wedding chapel and they parted, both grinning.

“Congratulations Dawnie.” Xander pulled her into a quick hug. He’d been the one to stand in for her father and had walked her down the aisle with Tara and Willow as her bridesmaids. Dean had obviously been best man. Giles was in England or else Xander would have stood as groomsman. Dean had been the one to call the Sunnydale gang to secretly arrange for them to meet them in Vegas with a wedding dress and tuxes. Sam had been appropriately threatened with death by shovel if he ever hurt Dawn the night they had arrived, much to Dawn’s embarrassment. There was a small apocalypse in LA or else Faith and the gang would have been there too.

“To think Dawn’s the first of us to marry.” Willow commented only to be frowned at by Tara.
“You know what I mean sweetie. We had a nice ceremony but it’s not legal, Dawn’s the first to be legally married.”

“Our little Dawn all grown up and married.” Xander fake sobbed and got hit by both Dawn and Willow, making him laugh.

“You did good little brother.” Dean praised and Sam smiled at him.

“Thanks for arranging this and getting them here.” Sam answered and Dean shrugged.

“It’s your special day Sammy, Dawn needed her family here too.” Dean tried to ignore Sam’s gratitude and Sam just smiled at him.
“So does the brother-in-law get a kiss from the bride?” Dean asked and Dawn kissed him on the cheek.

“Thanks for everything Dean.” She whispered and Sam smiled as Dean actually blushed.

TBC...
Chapter 4 by kirallie
Author's Notes:
Link to picture of Dawn's wedding dress: http://www.bridalsecrets.com.au/weddling_collections.php?keywords=&type=&nowstage=1&nowpage=4
the three pictures at the bottom
Sam smiled as he dropped their bags; their wedding gift from Dawn’s friends was a night in a Honeymoon suite of the Bellagio hotel. Sam was used to dingy motels and the dorms, the nicest place he could remember living was their apartment. But this place was in a whole other league.

“Wow. They really went all out.” Dawn commented and Sam smiled.

“They want you to be happy Dawn.” He answered, moving to hug her tightly.

“I am Sam, happier than I’ve been in a long time.” She told him and Sam smiled, hands moving to her hips.

“Have I told you how beautiful you look today?” He whispered and she smiled.

“Maybe, then again maybe you should say it again. Though you look pretty good yourself in that monkey suit.” She teased, turning so she could wrap her arms around him. Sam grinned, looking her dress over and then reaching around to slip the sheer wrap down and off her arms before reaching for the zip to her dress. In response Dawn reached up and undid his bowtie and then started on the buttons of his shirt.

“Hope Dean’s found something to do.” Sam admitted and Dawn laughed.

“I’m hoping he doesn’t piss Willow off by hitting on Tara.” She answered and Sam chuckled. He lowered the zip and then slowly pushed the gown downwards, being careful of the layers of material and long train. He then lifted her clear of the pile of cream material before picking it up and hanging it over a chair. Dawn smiled as she watched him, dressed only in silver heels and a satin shift. He turned to her and she beckoned him over.
“You Mr. Winchester are way overdressed.” She teased, pushing his shirt and jacket off together. He left them where they fell as he leant down to kiss her softly.

“You seem well on the way to fixing that problem Mrs. Winchester.” He answered when he pulled back to breath.

“Mrs. Winchester...I like the sound of that.” She said, hands going to his belt.

“Good.” He reached up and searched out the pins holding her hair up, letting it fall in a tangled mass of curls. He kicked his pants the rest of the way off and then picked her up, carrying her into the bedroom. She laughed as he gently tossed her onto the bed, wriggling out of her slip and kicking off her heels, leaving her in a pair of matching lacy bra and panties. Sam kicked his own shoes and socks off before joining her.

---------------------------------------------
Dean sat with the man that had given Dawn away, Xander something in the bar watching the two women dance together.

“Don’t even think about it.” The younger man warned and Dean looked at him.
“Don’t blame me if you end up a rat.” He shrugged and went back to watching the crowd, ignoring Dean’s shocked stare.

“Rat? What do you mean?” He demanded and Xander sighed.

“Welcome the life of a Scooby. We’re an odd bunch, fighting nightly and saving the world over and over again can do that to you. The two you’re ogling? Two of the most powerful Wicca’s on the planet.”

“They’re witches?” He spat in fear and anger, just who had Sam married? He was suddenly pinned by an angry stare.

“Watch your tone. Those two and Dawn are about the only people on the planet I’d kill for. Those girls have fought and bled to keep this world spinning so take your prejudice somewhere else. Can’t believe Dawnie could get involved with you lot.” Xander finished, shaking his head.

“What’s that meant to mean?”

“Come on, you heard her vows to the Goddess? Dawn is Wiccan too. Could be scary powerful if she wanted to be but she’s happy with the training she has.” Xander told him and Dean paled, his brother had married a witch? But Dawn seemed so sweet and kind.

“A witch?” Dean started to stand, ready to run to Sam’s rescue when his arm was grabbed, he tensed, ready to fight but the anger was gone from Xander’s face, replaced by confusion.

“What have you got against Wiccans? Dawn only uses magic as a last resort in a life threatening situation. Well that and warding places. Relax, your brother is safe with her, I’d like to see any creature brave enough to piss Dawn Summers off on her wedding night. She definitely got her sister’s temper.”

“What does she want with Sam?” Dean demanded and Xander shook his head.

“I know neither of us is married but I don’t think you’re any stranger to what a newly wedded couple gets up to.” Xander drawled and Dean glared.

“What demon did she deal with?” Dean demanded and Xander frowned.

“Okay timeout, I think we have some crossed wires here. Why are you asking about demons?”

“So I know which one she got power from and whether it’s the one after Sam!”

“There’s a demon after your brother? Great, two demon magnets married to each other, the world trembles. As for getting power from a demon are you insane? Wicca is natural magic. Dawn’s power comes from herself and nature and stuff.... I don’t really listen all that much since magic tends to go screwing around me. But I do know there are no demons involved.” Xander explained and Dean stared at him, mind whirling. No demons?
“Dawn is....special. If you’re going to be with her than I guess you should know. Dawn better tell Sam herself though, I do not get between spouses. Okay, here’s the story.” Dean listened in shock to the story of one Dawn Summers, now Winchester.

----------------------------------
“Morning Dean.” Sam greeted as he walked into the hotels restaurant and Dean just nodded.
“Okay, what’s wrong? You didn’t hit on Tara did you?” Sam asked, worried by Dean’s reaction.

“How much do you know about Dawn, Sammy?” He asked and Sam frowned.

“Why? Dean what’s wrong?”

“I had a really interesting talk with Xander last night and you should talk to her about it if you don’t already know.” Dean told him and Sam bit his lip. What had Xander told Dean that had his brother acting so weird?
“Has to do with her wedding vows.” Dean hinted and Sam frowned.

“What? The Goddess bit? I know Dawn’s pagan but I’ve seen her pray and all, nothing wrong with it.” Sam said and Dean shifted.

“Yeah, her exact religion Sam?” Dean pushed and Sam shrugged.

“Wicca, Dean there’s nothing wrong with that. It’s not like she’s worshipping demons or something.”

“Xander said he talked to you last night.” Sam nearly jumped as Dawn spoke from behind him.

“Dawn what’s Dean going on about?” Sam asked and she kissed him.

“Let’s have breakfast first okay? Not the sort of discussion we want to have in public.” She sat down and ordered pancakes and juice, Sam following her lead.

TBC....
Chapter 5 by kirallie
Sam looked between his wife and his brother, a sinking feeling in his chest. They had returned to their suite after eating, Dean trying to stay between Sam and Dawn and frankly it was pissing him off.

“Dawn?” Sam called as he watched his wife pace nervously. She stopped and took a deep breath, sitting on the couch.

“Ever watch Bewitched?” She asked and Sam frowned, having no idea where this was going but he nodded, he’d watched a lot of daytime TV growing up and it had been on reruns.
“Well...if you were Darren that’d make me?” She hinted and Sam’s mind spun, she couldn’t mean what he thought she did, could she?

“Dawn....I” He swallowed, staring at her with wide eyes.

“You married a witch Sam.” Dean pointed out flatly and Sam saw Dawn flinch slightly before her head went up.

“Wiccan thank you very much.” She snapped back and Sam felt his world shatter.

“No...Dawn why?” Sam managed to choke out and she stood up, walking towards him. Sam fought the urge to back away and then her hand was resting against his cheek.

“I love you.” She whispered softly and then took a deep breath, moving away to stare out the window.
“Technically I’m a lot younger than I look. Do you know what a Slayer is?”

“A myth.” Dean snorted and Dawn laughed.

“Hardly. For thousands of years Slayer’s have stood against the darkness, one after another. When one died another was called until Buffy Summers.”

“You’re sister?” Sam asked and Dawn nodded but didn’t turn.

“She hated it, all she wanted was to be a normal teenager and instead she had to go out night after night to fight vampires and demons. She died in her second year, thankfully Xander knows CPR. Buffy Summers was also an only child until she was in college and I appeared. No one even realised anything was up, they all remembered me always being there and I did too. Then Glory showed up, she was a Hell Goddess and she was looking for her ‘Key’. The Key was basically a ball of power used to ‘unlock’ the barrier between dimensions and Glory wanted to go home. Unfortunately if she did all the barriers would fall and...let’s just say if she’d won we wouldn’t be having this conversation. She kept insisting Buffy had it so Giles, her Watcher found a spell that would show the Key. They searched everywhere and then....I touched the globe and it lit up like the fourth of July. It was me, I was the key. The monks charged with the Keys protection knew they would fail so they sent it to the one person who could protect it in a form she would die to protect. They took Buffy’s blood and created me. All of their memories of me up until then were false, made by the monks for my protection. Glory eventually found out and captured me, they even managed to start the ritual but Buffy...we were both Summers, both shared blood. It wouldn’t stop as long as the blood flowed so Buffy she...she jumped, I tried but she wouldn’t let me. I watched my sister jump to her death so I would live.” Dawn fought back a sob and nearly jumped as familiar arms wrapped around her, she turned and buried her face in Sam’s chest.

Sam couldn’t stay where he was as he heard the choked sob and quickly went to Dawn, wrapping his arms around her and ignoring Dean’s hissed warning to stay back. He smiled as Dawn turned to cling to him, lowering his head to drop a soft kiss on the crown of her head. She looked up at him throw tear filled eyes and he smiled at her. She managed a watery smile and then stepped back and Sam let her go, knowing she needed the distance to finish her story.

“Giles managed to get custody somehow, since he’s not an American citizen I have no clue how. But it was mainly Xander and Tara who took care of me. It wasn’t long until small things started happening when I was too emotional. Tara was the one to realise what was going on. They all thought that once the date for the ritual had passed that the Key had simply ceased to exist...we were so stupid. That much energy can’t just vanish, it was still inside me. Tara started training me in Wicca once she realised the power needed an outlet. Magic is only a small percent of the power inside of me put it’s the part I can easily access at any time. I’ve accessed the Key’s energy once since then, the night our apartment burnt down I used it to make the demon leave. It was hard...living in the house without Mom or Buffy, I applied for college and left as soon as I could. I wasn’t running from the supernatural aspects of my life, I can’t, and I even patrolled at Stanford occasionally but the campus was pretty quiet. I warded our apartment and kept the religious calendar but other than that things have been so quiet...I didn’t mean to keep it from you, I just didn’t want to drag you into this world. Guess that wasn’t necessary.” Dawn turned back to stare at them and Sam smiled at her, accepting what she’d told them. Dean appeared more sceptical but Sam knew that was just a defence.

“So no deals with any demons for power?” Dean asked and Dawn smiled, shaking her head.

“Nope. Just wacky me and the stupid Key.” She answered and Dean nodded.
“Are we...is it okay?” Sam swept her up in his arms and kissed her, Dean making gagging noises behind them. When Sam set her back on her feet Dawn was giggling breathlessly.

“Just no turning me into a rat or anything freakish like that.” Dean grumbled and Dawn threw herself at him, making him catch her. He hugged her awkwardly and she kissed his cheek.

“Promise, I’d never do anything to hurt you or Sam.” She whispered and he nodded.

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“Got everything?” Sam asked, wrapping his arms around her waist and Dawn nodded.

“I’m ready. Tara’s got my dress, didn’t think I should take it and she’ll take care of it. Dean wants to hit the road huh?” She asked and Sam nodded.

“He’s never been one to stay in one place long though he seems to like Vegas.” Sam answered and she smiled.

“Then lets not keep him waiting.” She kissed him, shouldered her bag and headed for the elevator, Sam following her. They found Dean in the lobby and they checked out before heading for the Impala.

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“You okay?” Dean asked as Sam jerked awake. A quick glance showed Dawn still sleeping peacefully in the backseat.
“Yeah I’m fine.” Sam answered absently.

“Another nightmare?” Dean asked and Sam cleared his throat. Dawn had been the one to pull Dean aside and comment on Sam’s nightmares, Dean didn’t like the fact they had started a week before the demon had attacked Dawn.
“You wanna drive for a while?” He offered and Sam laughed softly, mindful of Dawn.

“In your whole life you never once asked me that.” Sam answered in amazement.

“Just thought you might want to, never mind.” Dean shrugged as he drove.

“Look man, you and Dawn are worried about me, I get it and thank you but I’m perfectly okay.” Sam insisted.

“mmhmm.” Was Dean’s only reply.

“All right…where are we?” Sam asked, getting the map out.

“We are just outside of Grand Junction.”

“You know what? Maybe we shouldn’t have left Stanford so soon.” Sam started and Dean sighed.

“Sam we dug around there for a week, we came up with nothing. If you wanna find the demon that attacked Dawn...”

“We gotta find dad first.” Sam finished softly.

“Dad disappearing, and this thing showing up again after twenty years, it’s no coincidence. Dad will have answers; he’ll know what to do.” Dean insisted.

“It’s weird man. These coordinates he left us, this Blackwater Ridge.” Sam commented, changing the subject.

“What about it?” Dean asked.

“There’s nothing there, it’s just woods. Why is he sending us to the middle of nowhere?” Sam asked and then fell silent as Dawn murmured in her sleep. He twisted around in his seat to watch her and Dean hid a smirk.

TBC...
Chapter 6 by kirallie
“We there?” Dawn asked as she sat up and began tying her hair back.

“Just pulling in now.” Sam answered, smiling at her.

“Let’s go campers.” Dean said as he parked and got out to head for the visitors centre. Sam opened Dawn’s door for her, earning him a quick kiss before Dawn jogged after Dean, Sam following her and admiring the way her jeans clung to her as she walked.

“Sam stop staring at my ass and come on!” She called and Sam blushed but ran to catch up. Dean wandered around the room while Sam and Dawn headed straight for the map.

“So Blackwater Ridge is pretty remote It’s cut off by these canyons here, rough terrain, dense forest, abandoned silver and gold mines all over the place.” Sam said as he studied the map.

“Dude check out the size of this freakin bear.” Dean stared at the stuffed animal in awe.

“And a dozen or more grizzlies in the area. It’s no nature hike that’s for sure.” Dawn grumbled.

“You kids aren’t planning on going out near Blackwater Ridge by any chance?” A ranger asked as he came out of the other room and they turned to see him.

“Oh no sir, we’re environmental study majors from UC Boulder, just working on a paper.” Sam lied and Dawn smiled at the ranger innocently.

“Recycle, man.” Dean threw in and Dawn shared a look with Sam, there went their little lie.

“Bull. You’re friends with that Hailey girl right?” The ranger asked and they all looked at each other.

“Yes we are ranger Wilkinson; she’s my best friend actually.” Dawn said, smiling at him.

“Well I will tell you exactly what we told her. Her brother filled out a backcountry permit saying he wouldn’t be back from Blackwater till the 24th, so it’s not exactly a missing persons now is it?” Dawn shook her head sheepishly and he smiled at her.
“You tell that girl to quit worrying, I’m sure her brother’s just fine.”

“We will. Well that Hailey girl’s quit a pistol, huh?” Dean commented and the ranger snorted.

“That is putting it mildly.”

“Actually you know what would help is if I could show her a copy of that backcountry permit you know so she could see her brothers return date.” Dean said and the ranger stared at them for a bit before finally nodding.
“Recycle, man?” Dawn said once he was out of earshot and Dean shrugged.
“I could lie better at twelve!”

“Whatever.”

-----------------------------------
“So, Blackwater Ridge doesn’t get a lot of traffic, local campers mostly. But still, this past April two hikers went missing out there, they were never found.” Sam said as he dug through the papers, Dawn reading another as she played with the straw to her Coke.
“Any before that?” Dean asked as he joined them at their table, the bar’s noise keeping anyone from listening in.

“Yep. In 1982, eight different people vanished. Authorities said it was a grizzly attack. And again in 1959 and again before that in 1936. Every 23 years, just like clockwork.” Dawn told him absently as she continued to read. Sam pulled out his laptop and turned it so they could all see.

“Okay watch this. Here’s a clincher. I downloaded that guy, Tommy’s, video to the laptop. Check this out.” Sam played the video frame by frame so they could see the shadow of...something moving very fast outside the tent.

“Do it again.” Dean said and Sam played it again.

“That’s three frames. That’s a fraction of a second. Whatever that thing is, it can move.” Sam pointed out and Dawn frowned.

“Told ya something weird was goin on.”

“There a ton of things that can move that fast, how are we going to figure out which this is?” Dawn asked the obvious question.

“Yeah. I got one more thing. In ‘59 one camper survived this supposed grizzly attack. Just a kid. Barely crawled out of the woods alive.” Sam answered with a grin, eyewitness account was sure to narrow it down a bit.

“Is there a name?” Dean asked.

----------------------------------------
“You guys got room for three more?” Dean called as they walked towards the group that was gearing up for the trip.

“Wait, you want to come with us?” Hailey asked in confusion.

“Who are these guys?” the oldest male of the group asked.

“Apparently this is all the park service could muster up for search and rescue.” Hailey told him.

“You’re rangers?” the man asked in disbelief since of the three only Dawn looked ready for a hike.

“That’s right.” Dean smirked as Hailey looked them over.

“And you’re hiking out in biker boots and jeans?” She asked and Dawn smirked, she’d told them to change after all.

“Well sweetheart, I don’t do shorts.”

“What, you think this is funny? Its dangerous backcountry out there, her brother might be hurt.” The man snapped at them.

“Believe me; I know how dangerous this could get. We just wanna help her find her brother, that’s all.” Dean shot back. The man glared at Dean but they headed out into the park without anymore problems.

“So you’re a ranger?” Hailey asked and Dawn shook her head.

“Nope, I’m Sam’s wife. But I grew up in a town that had desert on one side and a small forest on the other. I used to spend time in both with my sister and her friends.” Dawn explained and Hailey nodded.

“No offence but you look a bit young to be married.”

“Maybe, I’ll be twenty soon, Sam’s about three years older than me. We met at college and we just...clicked.” Dawn answered and Hailey smiled wistfully.
“Roy, you said you did a little hunting.” Dean said.

“Yeah, more than a little.” He answered.

“Uhhuh…What kind of furry critters do you hunt?” Dean asked.

“Mostly buck sometimes bear.” Roy informed him.

“Tell me, uh…Bambi or Yogi ever hunt you back?” Dean asked only to tense as Roy grabbed him.
“Whatcha doin Roy?” In answer Roy shoved a long sick into the bear trap Dean had almost stepped in.

“You should watch where you’re stepping…ranger.” Roy stated as Dean stared at the trap.

“It’s a bear trap.” Dean sounded sort of surprised and Dawn rolled her eyes, making Sam muffle a laugh.

“You didn’t pack any provisions. You guys are carrying a duffel bag. You’re not rangers so who the hell are you?” Hailey demanded angrily.

“Sam and I are brothers, and we’re looking for our father. He might be here, we don’t know. I just figured that you and me, we’re in the same boat.” Dean admitted when it was obvious she would not back off.

“Why didn’t you just tell me that from the start?” She asked, hurt.

“I’m telling you now. Besides it’s probably the most honest I’ve ever been with a woman. Ever. So we okay?” Dean asked and Hailey sighed but nodded.

“Yeah, okay.”

“And what do you mean I didn’t pack provisions?” He pulled out a big bag of Peanut M&Ms.

“Trust me, he can live off those.” Dawn called, getting a disgruntled look from Dean. They hiked in silence for another hour before Roy turned to them.

“This is it…Blackwater Ridge.” He said.

“What coordinates do we have?” Sam asked and Roy pulled out his GPS.

“35-111.” He answered.

“You hear that?” Dawn asked quietly as she shifted her backpack, hand going for her trusty knife.

“Yeah, not even crickets.” Sam answered, moving closer to her.

“I’m gonna take a look around.” Roy stated as he checked his rifle.

“You shouldn’t go off by yourself.” Sam argued and Roy snorted.

“That’s sweet…don’t worry about me.”

“All right everybody stays together. Let’s go.” Dawn snapped to stop the coming argument. She really didn’t like the feel of the forest around them, there was something very wrong. They headed off as a group although Roy did move ahead though he stayed in sight.

“Hailey, over here.” He called and Hailey ran to him only to see a wrecked campsite. The torn tents had blood on them.

“Oh my God.” She gasped and Dawn went to her, wrapping an arm around the poor girl.

“Looks like a grizzly.” Roy stated grimly.

“Tommy?” Hailey called, dropping her pack.
“Tommy?!” She cried again.

“Shh.” Sam hushed her but she ignored him.

“Tommy!?”

“Shhhhh.” This time it was Dawn to try and quiet her as she realised they weren’t as alone as they believed.

“Why?” Hailey demanded.

“Something might still be out there.” Sam answered. Dawn made her sure her pack was secure on her back as she mentally reviewed the various creatures that could be out there and how to kill them.

“Sam! Dawn!” Dean called and they went over to him.
“The bodies were dragged from the campsite. But here the tracks just vanish. That’s weird. I’ll tell you what…that’s no skin walker or black dog.” Dean stated. Dawn studied the tracks thoughtfully, there were some demons that could fit the pattern but they weren’t usually found in Colorado.

“Hey, he could still be alive.” Dean told Hailey when he noticed her crying over a battered and bloody cell phone.

“Help!!! Help!!!” A voice suddenly called and they took off towards it only to find nothing.

“It seemed like it was coming from around here didn’t it?” Hailey asked and Sam paled.

“Everybody back to camp.” He ordered and sure enough they found their supplies missing. The only things left were in Dawn’s pack.

“Our packs.” Hailey whispered in shock.

“So much for my GPS and my satellite phone.” Roy grumbled.

“What the hell is going on?” Hailey demanded fearfully and Dawn moved closer to her.

“It’s smart. It wants to cut us off so we can’t call for help.” Sam answered.
“Please tell me you have your cell in here Dawn.” He said and Dawn pulled it out.

“No signal.” She answered after a few minutes.

“You mean someone; some nut job out there just stole all our gear.” Roy said and Sam turned to his brother and wife.

“I need to speak with you…in private.” The three walked a small distance away from the others.
“Good. Let me see dad’s journal.” Sam said and Dean handed it over, watching as Sam searched for something.
“Alright, check that out.”

“Oh come on, Wendigos are in the Minnesota woods or northern Michigan. I’ve never even heard of one this far west.” Dean complained.

“Think about it Dean, the claws, the way it can mimic a human voice.” Sam argued and Dawn frowned.

“What’s a wendigo?” She asked and from the look on Sam’s face she knew it wasn’t good.

“Great. Well then this is useless.” Dean grouched as he stared at his gun.

“We gotta get these people to safety. All right listen up, time to go. Things have gotten more…complicated.” Sam called so everyone could hear.

“Kid don’t worry, whatever’s out there, I think I can handle it.” Roy half boasted and Dawn sighed, knowing that statement was not going to help.

“It’s not me I’m worried about; if you shoot this thing you’re just gonna make it mad. We have to leave now.” Sam argued just as she had predicted.

“One you’re talking nonsense, two you’re in no position to give anybody orders.” Roy snapped at him and Dawn took a deep breath.

“Enough!”She snapped, getting everyone’s attention, well it could have been the fireball hovering over her hand that had everyone staring at her.
“Sam stop antagonising everyone or you’ll be sleeping on a couch for a month.” That made Dean snicker and she shot a glare at him.
“Let’s get this clear, we’re the ones who know what’s going on so the rest of you shut up and do as you’re told or you can go home right now.” Dawn ordered and they nodded, still shocked by her little display of power. Unfortunately Roy was the first one to shake off the shock.

“You protect me? I was hunting these woods when your mommy was still kissing you goodnight.” He sneered.

“Yeah? It’s a damn near perfect hunter. It’s smarter than you, and it’s gonna hunt you down and eat you alive unless we get your stupid sorry ass out of here.” Sam shot back in her defence.

“Oy! Sam.....” She let the warning trail off and her husband flashed her the puppy eyes but nodded, moving up to warp his arms around her.

“Stop; stop it, everybody just stop. Look, Tommy might still be alive, and I’m not leaving here without him.” Hailey finally said and the three hunters shared a look before Dawn sighed and let go of the fire ball.

“It’s getting late. This thing is a good hunter in the day, but an unbelievable hunter at night. We’ll never beat it, not in the dark. We need to settle in and protect ourselves.” Dean said before another argument could start.

---------------------------------
Despite the fear curled in his gut as they tracked the wendigo he couldn’t help the small chuckle as he heard Dawn swearing under her breath. Dawn was pissed and he really couldn’t blame her, especially since he knew he was partially at fault for his wife’s mood. Maybe he should have agreed to let her transport Haley and the others back to safety, Roy would still be alive and they wouldn’t be running after Hailey and Dean, praying they found them in time. But deep down where he didn’t want to admit it...he was wary of Dawn’s powers, he couldn’t help it, it had been ingrained since he was a kid. But he would not let it destroy their relationship. He loved Dawn so much; he would fight to keep her.

“Sam.” She whispered and then pointed. He followed and nodded, they had found the lair. Looked like an abandoned mine. Sam motioned for Dawn and Ben to stay behind him and Dawn created another fireball for light and to hopefully ward off the wendigo if it was inside. They headed inside slowly, eyes peeled for danger but none of them noticed the weak floorboards until they gave way under them.

“Dawn!” Sam called and then the room was lit by her flames.

“I’m okay. Ben?” Dawn called and then they saw the boy scramble upright.

“Hailey!” Ben cried as he spotted his sister hanging nearby.
“Hailey wake up!”

“Dean!” Sam called as he spotted his brother. He shook him gently and Dean opened his eyes.
“You okay?” Sam asked and Dean nodded. Sam looked over to see Dawn helping Ben get Hailey down as he worked on getting Dean free.
“You sure you’re okay?” He asked again and Dean grimaced.

“Yeah. Where is it?”

“Don’t know.” Sam answered.

“Tommy!” Hailey’s cry had them all turning to see him hanging limply nearby. Hailey shakily reached out to check his pulse and then screamed as he jerked, eyes slowly opening.
“Cut him down.” She asked and Sam and Dawn walked over to do it.
“We’re gonna get you home.” Hailey whispered as she took her brother’s weight.

“Check it out.” Dean called and held up a familiar object making Sam grin.

“Flare guns…those’ll work.” He answered his broher. Dean laughed, twirling the guns. The headed down a nearby tunnel, Tommy in the middle being supported by his siblings and Dawn leading the way with her handing fireball turned flashlight. They all froze as they heard the growl.

“Looks like someone’s home for supper.” Dean commented.

“We’ll never outrun it.” Hailey whispered in fear and Dawn muttered under her breath, the fireball splitting into several which hovered around the group protectively. Dean looked the group over and then at Sam.
“You thinking what I’m thinking?” He asked and Sam nodded.

“Yeah I think so.”

“All right listen to me. Stay with Sam, he’s gonna get you out of here.” Dean ordered.

“What are you gonna do?” Hailey demanded and Dean winked at her before starting to walk away. Dawn grumbled, kissed Sam and then took off her brother-in-law.

“Chow time you freaky bastard! Yeah that’s right, bring it on baby, I’m feelin good.” He yelled and then noticed Dawn behind him.

“In case you forgot you’re hurt.” She commented before he could say anything and Dean groaned but let her follow.

“All right come on. Hurry!” Sam told the three siblings and they followed him down the tunnel.

“Hey! Hey you want some white meat bitch!? I’m right here!” Dean called but there was no answer.

“Get him outta here.” Sam ordered as they heard a familiar growl nearby.

“Sam, no.” Hailey argued but he pushed them towards the exist.

“Go! Go!” he ordered and they left.
“Come on. Come on.” He muttered. A growl came from the other side of the tunnel and Sam turned to see it practically in his face. He fired but missed so he took off after the others.

“Sam!” Hailey cried in relief as he appeared but he just took her place helping Tommy.

“Come on, hurry, hurry, hurry.” When the wendigo appeared, cornering them he shoved the others back.
“Get behind me.” Sam faced the wendigo down as it moved closer.

“Hey!” Sam relaxed at his brother’s shout and then he saw Dawn, fire burning between her hands.

“Get away from my husband you creep!” She yelled as she hurled the ball. It hit the wendigo which burst into flame.
“Sam!” She ran to him and he caught her, hugging her tightly.
“Are you okay?” She asked, looking him over and Sam smiled at her.

“I’m fine.” He answered and she relaxed.

------------------------------
“And the bear came back again after you yelled at it?” The cop asked and Ben nodded.

“That’s when it circled the campsite; I mean this grizzly must have weighed 800-900 pounds.” He answered.

“All right we’ll go after it first thing.”

“So I don’t know how to thank you.” Hailey told Dean who just stared at her and she sighed.
“Must you cheapen the moment?”

“Yeah.” He answered and she shook her head.

“You riding with your brother?” A paramedic asked and hailey nodded.

“Yeah. Let’s go.” Hailey called to Ben. She kissed Dean on the cheek in farewell.
“I hope you find your father. Thanks Sam, Dawn.” She called before getting into the ambulance.

“Man I hate camping.” Dean grumbled.

“Me too.” Sam agreed and Dawn shrugged.

“It’s not that bad.” That got her twin glares.

“Sam, you know we’re gonna find dad, right?” Dean asked and Sam nodded.

“Yeah I know…but in the mean time…I’m driving.” Sam answered and Dean reluctantly tossed him the keys.

“Will I ever get to drive?” Dawn asked as they got in.

“No!”

TBC....
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