Author's Note: Well? What did you think of Meet the New Boss? Did anyone else think Death was at his very awesomest?
I was in two minds about a tag to Meet the New Boss – but it was the first episode of the season, I couldn't let it go without one! So… here it is. Enjoy!
This series is going to work like Never the End… I'll put all S7 tags in here. There'll be one for most episodes (I hope!) but not necessarily for every episode. And I really hope you have fun with all the tags!
Thanks, as always, to Cheryl, without whom there would be a lot less fanfic from me. ;-)
Disclaimer: Sure, I own the boys. I also have a spaceship parked in my backyard and I own a small planetoid orbiting just beyond Pluto.
Summary: Dean went to the supply closet to find a jar of blood and no little brother. Where did Sam go?
The Devil's Workshop
Dean's going to be mad.
Is he? I don't know. I don't know. I thought I had a handle on this – enough of one to tell the hallucinations from the reality, at least – but it turns out I don't. I don't know if this is real, I don't know anything.
Dean was mad. That was how I was so sure it was Dean. If Dean had found out I lied about having hallucinations and hadn't had something to say about that –
Dean was mad, and I'm sorry, but, really, what was I supposed to do? I heard him talking to Bobby. I heard what he said about needing to believe I was all right. Was I really supposed to walk into that shed and destroy the last bit of hope my brother had?
It's not like Dean can do anything to help me. This is beyond whiskey-and-Impala therapy and we both know it. Dean might think I'm stupidly optimistic about everything, but I'm not. I'm enough of a realist to admit that what's wrong with my head can probably never be fixed.
It's not a big deal, considering the alternative.
It is hard, though. There's a part of my mind – the logical part, the part that's trying to stay in control – that knows this is real – this, the world, the stars, the Impala, Dean. But logic can't get you very far when your own brain is playing tricks on you.
Because – what if I'm wrong? What if that logical part of my mind is just trying to delude me? What if Lucifer was telling the truth and this is all just something he made up to torture me more? It would be right up there with some of the other things he's done, with all the times he made me believe Dean had come for me and –
Not thinking about that. Not thinking about that.
It was more agonizing than anything else he did. Dean would come in and help me off the rack, as gentle as he used to be when I was four, as gentle as he still is whenever I'm hurt. I would sink into his arms, feeling as warm and protected as only my big brother could make me feel.
And then Dean would turn into Lucifer – or if Lucifer was feeling particularly vindictive, he'd just stay Dean – and start carving me up.
Right. Brilliant job not thinking about that, moron.
I wanted to tell Dean about the hallucinations. That was the problem. From the second the wall broke, I wanted to go to Dean the way I used to with my scraped knees, go to him and tell him everything and let him fix it. I still want to go to Dean –
But Dean can't fix this.
And Dean has more important things to do right now. He's in the lab with Bobby, and I hope they found the jar of blood I left on the floor – thankfully I managed to put it down before it could fall and smash.
It's the least I can do, get out of the way so Dean can deal with the pressing problems instead of worrying about me.
Not that… Not that, not here, not now, not when it's supposed to be over!
Why are you running, Sammy? Don't you know you can't run in the Cage?
I'm stumbling through empty corridors trying to get away from Lucifer – from his face, from his voice, from his hateful words. It's all I can do.
I can't go back and help Dean and Bobby. I'm too much of a wreck; I'd be more of a hindrance than anything. If it doesn't work, if Cas doesn't pull himself together and put the souls back, then nothing's going to matter anyway. It won't matter if this is real or not, if I'm still in the Cage or not – either way, I'm screwed.
And if – if, I can't, I daren't let myself hope – if this is real, if I'm not in the Cage, and if Cas does manage to put the souls and the Leviathans back in Purgatory, Dean will find me.
Please let this be real.
Real, Sammy? The voice is in my head, echoing off the walls, around me, in me, and I must be going crazy. I told you. The only thing that's real is Hell. You're there.
"You're lying!" I say. Even to my own ears, my voice sounds unconvincing. "I'm not in the Cage."
Yes, you are.
"Dean got me out."
Please. Why would Dean waste his time trying to get you out of Hell? He's happy with the way things are. He doesn't need you back messing things up.
Don't believe me? Ask Michael. He's a big brother too.
I want Dean. I know it makes me sound like a child but I want Dean, I want him now. I want him to tell me it's OK and he's got my back and –
Whiny today, aren't we, Sammy?
I don't even know where I am anymore. It's probably still the lab – I don't remember having left it – but I'm in a different part of it now, what looks like some kind of underground tunnel.
Great. With my luck, this is probably going to be the place they dump their hazardous waste. I'll probably leave here with a glowing green tail.
You're never leaving here, Sammy. That's the point.
"Go away," I mutter, turning around, trying to remember which way I came.
Fine. Your funeral.
I pause. It's dangerous to listen to Lucifer… But one thing I've learnt over the many, many years I spent being tortured by him is that it can be even more dangerous not to listen to Lucifer.
"What are you talking about?"
That's the nature of the illusion, little Sammy. If you leave this building, it ends.
"You mean if I leave this building you'll go away?"
How adorable. The child still wants to believe that he's with his big brother. Don't be stupid, Sam. If you leave this building, I'll still be here. Everything else will go away. The world, your midget brother, that beaver in the baseball hat, everything. You step out of this building and it's midnight for Cinderella.
Like I said, Sammy, your funeral.
I feel something – rushing, movement – it makes the building shake, makes the ground shake, and I know Dean and Bobby have managed to get the door open and put the souls back.
Good. It's done. Dean's going to come for me.
Even if this were real, Sammy, why would Dean come for you? Do you really think he needs to take care of you on top of everything else?
"Get out of my head."
I'm not in your head, you ridiculous monkey. I'm right in front of you.
And, oh God, he is right in front of me. This isn't real – can't be real.
It's not in my head anymore. He's here and he's talking.
Please no. Please –
There's another shake, something that makes the ground vibrate under my feet and bits of plaster fall from the ceiling. Something's wrong.
Something's very wrong.
We might all be dead for real this time. One way or another.
The next one will probably be a continuation of this, with our favourite big brother making his series debut.
What did you think? Good? Bad? Please review!
Also, good luck for the second episode! I have to say, the promo looks good.