Welcome Back to my vision of the end of Sam and Dean’s fight to save the world! “With or Without You” is a multi-part, complex tale that brings the Supernatural saga to a close in a way that’s quite different than the “Unity”/”Despair”/”Inherit the Earth” finale that was presented in season 15. Yes, there’s mystery, danger, old friends and familiar enemies, but the ending – well, that just might surprise you. Begin with part 1, or drop into the story in whatever chapter you may have missed by using the links on our Fan Fiction tag. Then over the next several weeks, return with us to the Supernatural universe to again immerse yourselves in the lives of Sam and Dean Winchester!
“With or Without You”
“Thanks, Asa, that’s a big help. I recommend laying low and keeping your ears open unless you want to hunker down here with us,” Dean said into his cell phone. “A Canadian branch? I like the sound of that. Good luck and stay safe.” He hung up the call and turned to Anna who was hunched over the world map in the bunker’s war room.
“I heard,” she said as she moved a disc into position. “So the Stynes are now operating in Canada too.”
“Dean, I gotta be honest here, man. I don’t know how many more we can squeeze into the bunker here,” said Garth who was standing beside Dean across from Anna.
“The priority right now is to get everyone safe. Then we hit the Stynes back.” Glancing across the table, Dean saw his wife’s expression. “What?”
Anna sighed. “The Stynes have the advantage here. The longer we wait, the more resources they gather.”
“We’re gathering resources too,” said Dean.
“Not as fast as them. They have the funds and infrastructure to outspend us. On top of every monster at Eve’s disposal, the ones she can create, and whatever the Thule are up to…”
“What are you saying?” asked Garth.
“The longer we wait, the faster we lose the war.”
The three of them stood there in silence until there was a tug on Dean’s jeans.
“Daddy, I’m bored,” said John.
Before Dean could respond, Garth knelt down and said, “Hey! Did you know Uncle Garth is a teddy bear dentist?”
John looked at him incredulously.
“Why don’t we find your stuffed friends and check out their teeth?”
The kid shrugged then grabbed Garth’s hand and started leading him away.
“He’s really good with the kids,” said Anna while Dean moved to her side of the table. “He should have some of his own.”
“Yeah. A little girl and pair of twin boys. With a home dental office set up in the basement,” Dean said as he absent-mindedly rubbed his jaw.
“That’s… oddly specific.”
Dean shook his head. The strange visions seemed to be happening more and more often. “Sorry. My mind’s been wandering since being shot.”
Anna turned back to the map and sighed. “I’m not looking forward to this any more than you.”
“It’s your call, General,” said Dean. “What’s our move?”
“Draw them out into a battle on a field of our choosing,” she answered. “Any enemy would be a fool to accept.”
“But Eve and Monroe both are highly arrogant enough to accept the challenge,” said Dean. “Where do you have in mind?”
Anna pointed at the map. “Kansas City, Missouri.”
***** Sam *****
The warehouse had been empty and abandoned on the edge of a dying town for decades. Outside, it still seemed quiet and undisturbed with only a parked, black Chevy Impala interrupting the void. Inside, a point of light was zooming so fast towards Sam he was barely able to bring up his tennis racket in time to send it careening into a concrete wall. A couple of shotgun blasts behind him set his ear to ringing. “Did you get it?” he shouted.
“No!” Jody replied as she ejected an empty shell. “Those gnomes are a pain in the ass to hit.”
“Have we ever found this many fairies anywhere?” he asked.
Eileen entered the main room shouting, “All clear!”
Same here, Sam signed back at her. “They must be holding something important here for this many guards. How’s it look?”
Alex, who the question was directed to, was pressing her palms and cheek against a large set of double doors. “Clear?” she said more as a guess than an answer.
“That doesn’t sound very confident,” said Jody.
Alex sighed and spun around. “There’s something mystical on the door. And the walls. But I can’t tell if it’s like… any kind of trap. Or much of anything about it.”
“Maybe it’s not to keep us out,” said Sam as he guided her away. “Maybe it’s to keep something in.” Raising his leg, Sam kicked the doors as hard as he could.
Beyond them was a bare room, completely empty save for a single chair sitting in the middle of it with a man chained to it. On the floor around the chair was a red circle with strange symbols drawn on the circle’s cardinal points. A single lightbulb dangled over the man’s head. He looked up as the four of them entered.
“Who are you?” asked Sam.
“My name is Gadreel,” replied the man in a rough voice.
“What are you?” asked Jody. “Demon or fairy?”
“He’s an angel,” Sam answered.
Everyone looked at him. “How do you know?” asked Jody.
Sam shook his head. How could he explain the strange visions and sights he had been seeing more and more of lately. “I… don’t know.”
“He speaks the truth,” Gadreel replied. “I am an angel.”
“Prove it,” said Alex.
The man’s eyes turned blue as the light in the room began flickering. On the wall behind him, they watched the shadowy outlines of wings rise as if from his shoulders.
Sam signaled to the others to check the room while he checked the prisoner’s shackles. “How did a bunch of fairies get a hold of an angel?”
“Many eons ago I made a mistake and was imprisoned,” Gadreel said with great sadness. “They found my cage and dragged me from it for interrogation.”
Sam realized that he could easily pick the locks holding Gadreel in place but held off on it. “What did they want to know.”
“Where is the door for Heaven.”
Sam pulled out his lock picks and began working on the shackles. “Gadreel, you want a chance at redemption?”
“More than anything.”
***** Jack *****
The right hook caught Jack on the chin and sent him sprawling onto the mat. He took a moment to rub his jaw and blink the stars out of his eyes. They were in the bunker’s gym where Dean had set up a crude boxing ring in the form of a large square floor mat.
“Come on, Jack. Get back up,” said Dean, hitting his boxing gloves together.
Jack pushed himself back to his feet, adjusting his padded headgear. “I don’t understand the point of this exercise.”
“It’s practice for when a real fight comes,” Dean said as he tossed a jab that Jack dodged. “You need to know your limits,” he said as he threw a flurry of hooks that Jack had to use his own gloves to block. “How to think fast.” Jack hopped away from another attack. “And most importantly—” Dean lunged and drove an uppercut into Jack’s gut. The kid doubled over and dropped to one knee. “You got to learn how to push past the pain. To not give up. Got that, Jack? Keep fighting. Until your very last breath, you always keep fighting.”
Jack’s eyes flashed gold and he straightened, grabbing the underside edge of the table to steady himself. “If you want to hurt me, you’ll have to get your hands dirty.”
Chuck cracked his knuckles. “Been a long time since I’ve done that. But if you insist.”
He strode towards Jack and raised his fist. Before Chuck could strike, Jack grabbed the black scythe that had been taped to the underside of the table and lunged forward, swinging the blade towards his enemy’s heart.
Chuck looked down. He had teleported a foot away as Jack attacked, but there was a diagonal cut across his chest. Light and shadow seeped out of the wound, until Chuck placed his hand over it and healed himself. “Really?” he asked as he did this. “You tried to lure me into a trap of my own overconfidence to hit me with a killing blow when I least expected it?”
Jack stood up, tightening his grip on Death’s mortiferous black scythe.
Chuck began clapping. “Honest applause for you, Jack. That was always my favorite trope the Winchesters used to achieve victory. Looks like you learned well from them after all. But this is the final showdown. That solution is a little… too anticlimactic.” He held out his right hand and a golden dagger with a twisting blade appeared in it. “What do you say? An old-fashioned duel where I kill you with your father’s sword?” The weapon in his hand vanished and was replaced with a dark, twisted weapon carved from an animal’s bones. “Or the weapon of your adopted father, the First Blade? Is that enough poetic irony? Oh, who am I kidding?” The First Blade vanished from his hand and a silver cylinder replaced it. Chuck pressed a button on the side of it, and a red beam of light grew forth. “I’ve always wanted a fight with lightsabers. Though this is the wrong color…” Chuck turned his other hand as if he was adjusting an invisible dial, and the color of the light changed through all the colors of the rainbow, until it was a pale teal. “There. Just like the original title.”
Chuck lunged, bringing the lightsaber down with such speed that Jack was barely able to raise the scythe in time to block. Jack turned the attack aside and countered, forcing Chuck to parry. His riposte was flawless, and Jack had to turn his weapon, locking the lightsaber into the scythe’s crook.
Both fighters struggled to pull their weapon away, but neither would give. Chuck switched off his weapon’s blade and took a step back. “Go on,” he said. “Scythes make for poor dramatic clashes.”
Without taking his eyes off Chuck, Jack straightened up. With his other hand, he slowly passed it over the blade, grunting periodically as he reshaped the scythe into a black, curved, katana.
Chuck laughed. “I see Sam shared with you his appreciation of Kurisawa films,” he said before lunging forward with an overhead strike, the lightsaber igniting.
Jack brought his own blade up and blocked the attack. He pushed Chuck back and lunged with a cross body strike. Chuck spun out of the way of the blow and countered towards Jack’s left shoulder, which he parried just in time. The two traded attacks a couple more times.
“The Force is strong with you, young Skywalker – but you are not a Jedi yet,” said Chuck with an unnaturally deep voice.
“You’re not my father,” said Jack, swinging wide.
“No, I’m technically your grandfather,” Chuck replied as the blades hit each other again. “And if you tell me where Sam and Dean are, we can do all sort of family bonding activities afterwards.”
“They’re safe – from you,” Jack answered as he charged forward.
***** Dean *****
A soft ding announced the arrival of the elevator. Robert Styne, who was heading towards his office, stopped to see who was arriving. The gold-colored doors parted to reveal a woman with blood-red hair dressed in army-colored pants and jacket.
“Can I help you, miss?”
Her eyes narrowed. Before he realized it, Anna Winchester withdrew her gun and shot him between the eyes. “Secure the building!” she shouted to the people who began pouring out of the elevator behind her. “Bring everyone you find to me – alive.”
“Why did you shoot him?” asked a nervous voice.
“I can sense when someone is lying,” said Anna. “And there was nothing human left inside that man. Now how about we find a place to work, Charlie?” she said, putting her hand on the other woman’s shoulder. “I’m glad you came along. It’s going to make things a lot easier.”
They found a conference room with a wall of windows overlooking Kansas City. TVs hung on the 3 remaining walls. Charlie went to work giving orders to the hunters who were able to follow her technical instructions, while Anna oversaw the securing of the building, judging who inside was a truly innocent civilian, versus who had been a party to the Stynes’ machinations.
The last janitor in the building was being let outside with instructions to go home when she heard Charlie’s voice in her ear bud. Anna gave some final instructions to the ground level crew and headed back to the top floor.
“I’m impressed, Charlie,” the former angel said as she entered the conference room. Three more tech-savvy hunters were seated around the table, manning the impromptu rig they had constructed.
“All channels ready to go. We’re also tapped into the police feed, emergency channels, local news channels, and regional social media,” Charlie explained, pointing at the TVs which were all filled with multiple boxes of streaming information.
Anna sent out a mass text, letting everyone know it was time to get online. She waited until Charlie nodded then began to speak, “This is General Anna to all troops. Team leaders, please give me a report and confirm signals.”
“Alpha team, in position.” Anna couldn’t help but notice Charlie’s face brighten as she heard Jo’s voice.
“Beta team, moving into position,” said Aaron Bass, the sound of his golem grumbling in the background.
“Gamma team, ready in position,” said Garth.
“Delta team, bored but in position.” This time, Anna couldn’t help but smile as she heard Dean’s voice.
She waited until the remaining four teams reported in, then continued her speech. “We have successfully taken over Styne tower and converted it into our base of operations. That should get Monroe’s attention so they’ll make a move on our position soon. All teams stay alert and report anything suspicious. We’re still not sure what role Eve is going to play.”
“Delta here. We’ve got a sizeable group moving in tandem towards your building. Could be workers – could be worse. Checking it out.”
To Anna’s right, the TV on the opposite side of the room from where Charlie was sitting had displayed a street map of this area of Kansas City. Red dots with a Greek letter next to them had been placed on the map indicating where Anna had instructed the teams to take up position. While the channel was quiet, she moved closer to the screen, her eyes focusing on the dot marked with a little triangle.
The sound of gunfire, screams, and falling bodies rang out over the radio. After too many long, tense seconds, Dean’s voice came through saying, “We have a bunch of undead monsters here. Repeat – undead monsters.”
“What was that?” Garth asked, giving voice to the confusion rippling over the communications.
“The Thule! They’re apparently using their necromancy to bring back vampires and werewolves and worse. They have an army of monster-zombies!”
“Can they be stopped?” asked Anna.
Everyone waited with bated breath.
“Head trauma and damage to the limbs slow them down!” reported Dean. “They seem to be flammable too. Set them on fire.”
“I think we have some,” reported Jo.
“Got a few over here,” said Garth.
“No sign of an actual Thule, yet,” replied Aaron.
Anna looked again at the map which Charlie was filling in with the reports from the teams. Anna had spread her forces in concentric circular patterns around the building. She hoped their coverage of the city blocks would catch the direction of the Styne attack. But if every team was reporting contact, that meant they were surrounded.
*****To Be Continued*****
Find out what happens next Sam, Dean, Castiel, Jack and friends in Part 13 of “With or Without You”! Until then, enjoy WFB’s other Supernatural fan fiction, found at the Fan Fiction tag on the bottom of every page!
Story and Illustration by Nate Winchester
Edited by Nightsky