Better Off Together

by Brate

A crossover between Supernatural and the Magnificent Seven OSIR AU. Sequel to "It's the Fall That'll Kill Ya."

Summary: The brothers run into Larabee's OSIR team at a haunted house.

Who You Gonna Call?
It's the Fall that Will Kill You

Ignoring the ambient noise of the bar, Vin Tanner tossed down two cards and motioned for replacements. His tablemate and current adversary, Ezra Standish, gave a smile as he dealt fresh cards.
"You aren't stackin' the deck, are you, Ez?"
Ezra's smile widened, showing off his gold tooth. He shook his head. "There is no need, my friend. Unfortunately for you, it seems as though none of your psychic abilities manifest as poker skills."
"I'm just lullin' you into a false sense of security, then I'm gonna pounce."
"You've been waiting to 'pounce' for the past four years? You have the patience of Job."
"Got to make it noteworthy, don't I?"
Ezra's reply was cut off by Buck Wilmington's return. Their teammate slammed his beer down and dropped into a chair with a world-weary sigh. Buck was unhappy and, as such, wanted everyone to know it.
Vin exchanged a glance with Ezra. He mouthed, "Your turn."
Ezra girded his loins. "Is there a problem, Mr. Wilmington?"
"You bet there is." Buck gave a jerk of his head. "I was gettin'…friendly with a delightful gal when a young turk came up and stole her away."
A chuckle struggled to escape Vin at the "ladies' man" getting rooked.
Buck went on, either not noticing or ignoring the amusement he was creating. "There's something about this kid I don't like. Don't seem trustworthy."
"Why, 'cause he stole your gal?"
"No." At their disbelieving look, Buck amended, "Well, not entirely." He glared over Ezra's shoulder. "There's just somethin' shifty about him. Maybe you can get a readin' on 'im, Vin."
Barely refraining from rolling his eyes, Vin dutifully asked, "Which one is he?"
"Dark blond hair, leather jacket, over in the corner."
Ezra's eyes followed Buck's direction and his eyes widened minutely.
Noticing the look of surprise on Ezra’s face, Vin quickly turned to look where Buck was pointing. He startled in recognition before he grinned. Dean Winchester. Glancing around for Dean's brother, Sam, Vin saw him sitting in a dark corner, covering Dean's back. Vin and Ezra had met the Winchesters previously, but Buck had not.
Hiding his smile, Vin turned back to the table. "Buck, I get a bad feelin' from that guy."
Ezra snorted beside him; Vin kicked him under the table. Quickly he stood, chair tipping over in his haste. "I'm thinking I might take care of this one myself."
Buck looked at Ezra, probably wondering what had gotten into Vin. Ezra held up his hands in a no clue gesture.
The three headed over to the corner. Vin made sure he led the way. As the trio approached, he saw Dean instinctively put himself between the girl and a potential threat, before realizing who was coming. He started to smile a greeting, but Vin got right up in his face before Dean could say anything.
"The hell you think you're doing? We don't like your kind around here."
"My kind?" Dean asked.
Vin poked him in the chest. "Troublemakers."
Dean's confusion was fleeting, almost instantaneous. His face darkened and he turned around to the girl. "Sweetheart, it might be a good idea for you to move on over there."
Wide eyes flicked between Dean and Vin. Clutching her purse tightly, she scurried away.
Dean watched her leave, making sure she was at a safe distance before turning back to Vin and smiling predatorily. "You sure you wanna do this, man?"
Vin cricked his neck and loosened his stance. "Someone's got to." He felt Buck puff up behind him, in order to intimidate Dean.
Dean smirked as Sam came to stand behind him, inches above Wilmington's own 6'3". "Is there a problem?" Sam asked.
"Nothing I can't handle," Dean assured him. His smirk switched to Vin, telegraphing the coming punch.
Three minutes later, the five men burst through the rear door, leaving behind a full-on barroom brawl.
Dean and Vin were holding each other up, laughing, while Buck looked between them. It didn't take long for him to suss out he'd been had. "Assholes!" Buck cursed, which only made them laugh harder.
Finally, they got themselves under control. Vin pushed off Dean and wiped at his eyes. "Sorry, Bucklin, I couldn't resist."
"Goddammit, Casper. I'm gonna kick your ass. Chris ain't here to protect you."
Vin snorted. "You know he'd still have your hide if you tried anything."
Switching his gaze to the newcomers, Buck growled, "Just who the hell are you guys?"
Straightening his tie, Ezra stepped forward. "Buck Wilmington, allow me to introduce you to Sam and Dean Winchester."
"Oh, you're Buck?" Sam stuck out a hand, knuckles scraped. "Nice to finally meet you."
Dean offered his hand as well. Buck reluctantly returned the greetings.
"Well, strike another bar off our list," Sam said. "You know we're going to run out at some point."
Shrugging, Dean said, "That's half the fun."
"Let's move this someplace else before the cops show," Sam continued, as they walked around to the parking lot and stopped next to the Impala. "We're staying at Pete's Palace, off Seventh."
Ezra sniffed disdainfully. "How about you gentlemen come with us back to the Monterey? We can order room service, including some well-needed libations."
Dean smiled. "I never say no to libations." He slid effortlessly into the driver's seat and started the car.
"We'll meet you there." Sam got in the car before it could pull away.
Chewing his lip, Buck said, "Maybe we should call Chris."
"Why?" Vin asked.
"Be-because of…" He motioned at the departing car.
Vin raised his brows in confusion.
Buck sighed. "He said you tend to get hurt around them."
"What? Are you serious?"
"Oh, for God's sake," Vin said. "Chris is a worrywart, the Winchesters are not jinxes, and I'll be fine." He started to walk away then stopped and turned around. "And don't think I won't know if you call Chris on the sly."
Putting his feet up on the coffee table, Dean leaned back and took a swig of imported beer. He actually enjoyed the cheaper brands more, but since Ezra was offering, he wasn't saying no. The hotel suite the OSIR team was staying in was a hell of a lot nicer than the shitholes he and Sam were used to. But there was no jealousy on Dean's part, almost the opposite. This wasn't a place he could relax; he'd always be worried about getting gun oil on the bedspread or blood on the rug.
Ezra looked across the table with a disapproving gaze at Dean's mud-encrusted shoes, but swirled the whiskey in his glass and took a sip. "So, what brought you gentlemen to the fine town of Stone Creek? Just passing through?"
"No, we have a job," Sam answered.
Scratching the back of his head, Vin groaned. "Aw, hell. Don't tell me you're here for the Harper house."
"Okay, we won't tell you," Sam deadpanned.
Dean valiantly tried to smother his smile.
"You know," Vin said, "we were actually invited by the family."
"Invitations are for pussies," Dean declared.
Buck barked a laugh. "Okay, I could get to like you."
"Everyone likes me," Dean said. "I'm extremely likeable."
"Y'all been out to the house yet?" Vin took a sip of his beer and put his feet up next to Dean's. His lips curved in obvious amusement at the frown Ezra directed his way.
Sam shook his head. "We were actually planning on heading there later tonight." Focusing his attention on Vin, Sam asked, "You done your walkthrough yet?" Tanner always went alone into their investigation sites to gather psychic impressions without cross-contamination from his teammates.
Vin nodded. "There's something there. Not sure what though."
"Vague enough there, psychic wonder?" Dean snorted softly. "Does this power of yours ever do anything useful?" He still hadn't quite absolved Vin for the last time he'd asked for help, and Sam had nearly died as a result.
Buck's smile turned angry, and he started to rise before Vin's outstretched arm stopped him.
"Oh, he don't mean nothing," Vin soothed. "Just worried is all." Annoyingly, he shot Dean a look of understanding.
Great. So now he had to feel guilty on top of being pissed? Dean dropped his gaze and mumbled an apology.
Ezra cleared his throat and spoke a little too brightly. "We were planning to return tomorrow; you're welcome to join us."
The Winchesters exchanged a glance. Dean tried to convey hesitation in his eyes but Sam chose to ignore it, of course.
"We'd love to," his brother enthusiastically agreed. "We didn't find much information in the paper. Want to share the details?"
"Well," Buck began, gruff voice letting everyone know all was not forgiven, "for the last couple months or so, the Harper family had noticed things seemed to shift around. You know, keys not in their proper places, cups knocked over in the sink, books off the shelf. They have a seven-year-old daughter named Shelby, so they didn't think much about it. Wendy and Patrick just figured she was playing pranks or something. Then things started to move when they were there to see it."
"Sounds like a poltergeist," Sam said.
"We've got something for that." Dean added, thinking of the bags they'd made with Missouri.
"It's not a poltergeist." Vin sounded certain.
Ezra continued, "The family was nervous, of course, but they weren't afraid until last week. A glass flew across the room, hitting Shelby in the head and requiring eleven stitches. They checked into a hotel straight from the hospital, and contacted the OSIR."
Standing up, Vin went to the kitchenette to get more beer and snacks.
Dean waited until Vin's back was turned then mouthed "Poltergeist" at Sam. His brother nodded.
Vin spun around, and threw a bag of chips at Dean. "It's not a poltergeist!"
Dean's jaw dropped. No matter what he'd seen Vin do, Dean still had a healthy disrespect for paranormal abilities. Especially since his brother had developed the shining. He would never get used to the psychic bullshit, it just wasn't natural. It left Dean feeling vulnerable, exposed, something he wasn't overly fond of.
"It's not a poltergeist," Vin said again, calmer. "At least not like I've come across before. It feels different."
"Well, Shelby would be a bit young to stir up poltergeist activity," Sam conceded. "It's usually centered around teens or pre-teens."
"House have any history?" Dean asked.
Buck shook his head. "We've checked into the house and property, and nothing interesting's ever happened there before."
"Before the poltergeist," Dean commented. Sam elbowed him in the side.
Vin glared.
"Fine, okay," Dean relented, "I guess we'll find out when we go over there."
Ezra stood and clapped his hands. "Wonderful. Then I suggest we retire, since we'll be getting up at an ungodly hour to check things out." He turned to Sam and Dean. "Should we all meet at the house at ten o'clock?"
Dean was aghast. "Dude, do you normally waste half the day?"
"How 'bout eight?" Vin compromised.
Sam said, "That'll be fine," before Dean could utter a word.
It didn't stop him from scowling, though.
Sam looked out the passenger side window at the two-story house. It was pretty decent-sized, telling the family had money. The grounds were well-cared for, too. Either they paid to have it done, or one of the Harpers had a green thumb and lots of free time.
The fingers drumming on the seat back directly behind his head were getting harder for Sam to ignore. He shoved Dean's outstretched arm away. "Can you knock that off, please?"
With an overly dramatic eye roll, Dean switched the rhythmic tapping to the steering wheel. "Just how long are we gonna wait for them?"
"Dude, it's three minutes past eight; I think we can give them a little leeway."
Dean checked the time. "They got seven more minutes then I'm going in."
Luckily for Sam he didn't have to handcuff his brother to the car, because the others pulled up with twenty seconds to spare. Exiting the Impala, they met the three OSIR men on the porch. Sam snorted as Dean pointedly looked at his watch.
Sam automatically stooped to pick the lock, jumping when Ezra jingled a set of keys in his face. "I think this might work better."
"No it wouldn't," Sam said as he swung the door open. He gave an after you flourish, struggling to hide any embarrassment he felt at forgetting they'd been invited into the family's home.
"Nice," Dean said proudly patting his brother's chest as he walked inside.
Sam shook his head and followed. Leave it to Dean to be impressed by his ability to break and enter.
Everyone gathered in the foyer. Dean took out his EMF meter; Ezra followed suit. Sam smothered a laugh when he saw the two men appraise each other's equipment and give a nod of approval.
Dean moved left, Vin walked to the right, while Ezra went upstairs, and Buck down to the basement. Sam was appalled. He understood splitting resources, but when encountering violent entities it made sense to keep together, keep safe, watch each other's backs. Sam just hoped most of the OSIR jobs were for neutral hauntings and not dangerous ones. Whatever this situation, he was sticking close to Dean, and carrying his rock salt-loaded shotgun, just in case.
As Sam trailed behind his brother, he noticed he wasn't getting any "weird vibes" from the place. But he couldn't believe he was actively trying to get any kind of psychic feelings. When he was around Vin, his abilities, or whatever they were, didn't seem quite so insane. They almost felt normal. And Sam longed for normal—with quiet desperation.
Dean was exploring the living room when Buck returned to the first floor. When he saw Sam's weapon, he shot a confused look in Vin's direction. The psychic pulled Buck aside to fill him in on the "anti-ghost gun."
They'd checked the living room, back office, and kitchen, and were entering the semi-enclosed dining room when Ezra joined them, sweeping one side of the room while Dean took the other. Buck and Vin leaned against the doorway, watching, as Sam stood in the center next to the table. He was wondering if they would have to try to incite whatever spirit this was to come out and play when Dean's detector activated with shrill beeps. Dean was pointing it at a shelf holding a Geisha doll flanked by two vases.
Buck shuddered. "Dolls creep me the hell out."
"Clowns," Sam said.
"Airplanes," Dean said.
Vin added, "Closets."
Sam and Dean turned to look at Vin.
Ezra coughed to cover a smile. "Mr. Tanner has a slight problem with claustrophobia."
"Ah." The Winchesters nodded.
Instantly dismissing the vases, they were clearly from a retail chain, Sam honed in on the doll. As soon as he picked it up, all hell broke loose.
The doors of the china cabinet opened as if yanked by invisible hands, and all the dishes within started flying around the room. The previously ignored vases flew at Sam, smashing into his hand and making him drop the doll.
"Son of a bitch!"
Sam turned in time to see Dean sidestep a plate, but get hit in the back with a teapot. The others weren't fairing much better. The only one able to dodge most of the projectiles was Vin.
"I believe it's time for a strategic retreat," Ezra said as he avoided a crystal decanter.
The men ran into the living room and, as a couple dishes chased them, dropped down behind the sofa. Activity continued—concentrated in the dining room. Occasionally something flew out the door, but it seemed by chance rather than intent.
"I believe we have found the source of the problem," Ezra drawled.
"You think?" Dean snarked.
"Told you it wasn't a poltergeist." Vin smugly regarded Dean.
Dean huffed a laugh. "Certainly seems to be doing a pretty damn good Carol Anne impression."
"We've got to find out what's causing it," Buck said, "or this family ain't gonna have a pot left to piss in."
"I need to get a closer look at the doll," Sam said.
A platter flew over their heads, smashing against the wall behind them.
"Be my guest." Dean lifted a hand. "Just don't expect me to stitch you up."
"What exactly do you need?" Vin asked.
Sam shrugged and pointed to where the doll had fallen. Luckily, the bottom of it faced their direction. "I only got a quick look, but I think there was something written underneath. Might be useful."
"All right, hold on." Vin poked his head over, then made a little gimme finger waggle. "I need a pen and paper."
Sam handed over his notebook and pen; Vin drew something then passed it back. "That's what's on the bottom of the stand."
Dean craned his neck around the side. "How the hell could you see that from here?"
"Always did have good eyesight," Vin said, lifting a shoulder. "It mean anything to you?"
Sam looked at the symbol, brow wrinkling in a frown. "Doesn't look familiar, but it's a start."
Shards from a shattered crock-pot blanketed the area.
"Can we discuss this elsewhere?" Buck asked testily.
"Oh, yeah," Sam said. There was no reason to stay and agitate the entity any longer. "Let's go."
After a quick stop at the local library, the men headed to a bar—on the other side of town from the one where they had met the night before. Dean carted a stack of books, flashing a thank you smile to the young lady who'd held the door open for him. Sam, Vin, and Buck came behind, following Dean to a small table in the corner. He plunked the books down and slapped the pile. "There you go, Sam. Have at it."
The other three sat at the next table, where Dean could keep an eye on Sam while he did his geek thing. They ordered a couple pitchers of beer and a mountain of food. Once it arrived, Dean performed his older brother duties, sending a sandwich Sam's way, even though Gigantor barely noticed it, neck deep in research.
Just as Dean shoved a huge bite of nachos in his mouth, Buck asked, "What do you think we'll have to do with the doll?"
Dean chewed and swallowed quickly, washing the food down with beer—and Sam said he had no manners. Once his mouth was empty, Dean said, "Probably end up torching the sucker."
"Remember the painting," Sam called over without looking away from his laptop.
Buck looked between the brothers. "Painting? What painting?"
"There was this creepy ghost girl who lived in a painting," Dean recounted. "She'd come out and slice people's necks with a straight razor." In all honesty, he was enjoying the wide-eyed amazement on his audience's faces. He and Sam didn't socialize with many hunters, and it wasn't as though he could brag to the traumatized citizens they ordinarily encountered. "We tried burning it, but it re-formed."
"Holy shit." Buck slapped Dean on the back. "I guess they weren't exaggerating about you boys."
Dean did his best not to cough up a lung when he replied, "They never have to."
Out of the corner of his eye, Dean saw Ezra arrive and head straight to Sam. Their heads were almost touching as Ezra leaned close, talking softly. Sam nodded, scribbling a few notes. Straightening, Ezra came over and sat next to Vin.
The group ravaged their way through the food pretty quickly. When every plate was empty, Dean leaned back in his chair, patting his stomach. He looked over at Vin. "I'm bored and you look like a guy who knows his way around a pool table."
Vin shook his head. "Not tonight…sorry."
Ezra had perked up significantly. "Pool, you say? I've always fancied learning the game."
"Learning the game, huh?" Dean grinned. He knew he was being conned, but he appreciated the effort. Besides, he was fairly certain whatever Standish could dish out he could take. "I'd be happy to show you the ropes," he said, standing. "You guys coming?" Dean asked Buck and Vin who hadn't moved.
Buck nodded at Sam. "What about the kid?"
"Don't worry." Dean gave a dismissive wave. "That actually is his idea of fun."
Two games and two losses later, Dean wasn't having fun. To add insult to injury, Vin wouldn't stop watching as Sam went through book after book, webpage after webpage.
Vin forced his attention back on the game, smiling self-consciously when he caught Dean's scrutiny. "You sure we shouldn't be helping him or something?" he asked.
"Nah," Dean said, leaning on his pool cue. "Don't worry about Sammy. He loves that shit. Especially when he puts all the pieces together and finds an answer."
"I've got it!" Sam cried excitedly, voice carrying across the room.
"See?" Dean put away the stick and slid Ezra another twenty as the group returned to their seats. Dean flipped his chair around and straddled it. "What did you find?"
"Um," Sam glanced between the computer and his notes, "I think it's a mononoke."
"As in 'Princess'?"
Sam looked up at that. "Huh?"
"Anime movie, dude." Dean wept at the holes in Sam's education.
"Uh, I have no idea."
"Never mind." Dean rolled his hand. "Carry on."
"Ezra contacted the Harpers, and discovered Patrick brought the doll back from a business trip to Japan, a short time before this started. And that mark Vin saw was a Buddhist protection symbol. So I concentrated on Japanese lore, and found something that fits. Mononoke are a type of ghost comparable to the poltergeist, but lives in inanimate objects." Sam read from his notes, "According to Shinto belief, all things, even inanimate objects, have their own unique spirits, or hami, which gives them life. The mononoke, however, like to scare or even kill people." He looked up with a shine to his eyes. "If I'm right, it's an easy fix. Well, relatively easy. We're just missing one thing."
"What's that?" Buck asked.
"A Buddhist priest."
"Oh, don't worry. I'm sure I got one of those in the trunk," Dean said. "Let me go get him."
Sighing, Sam said, "I didn't say Judas Priest, Dean."
"Since we obviously don't have a priest, what are we going to do?" Ezra asked.
Sam grinned. "I have an idea about that."
"Every time you say that, the hair on the back of my neck stands up." Dean grimaced.
"I think we might be able to do this without a Buddhist priest, actually."
"This isn't something to mess around with, Sam," Buck said. "This thing is growing stronger."
"Exactly. So if we don't do something quick, it'll get a lot worse. We should know almost immediately if my plan worked or not. If it didn't, we can go track down a Buddhist temple and snatch ourselves a priest."
"Fair enough," Dean said, enjoying the stunned looks from the OSIR team.
Eyeing the house, Sam tried to suppress the rolling in his gut. He was certain his substitution would work. Well, pretty sure. Frankly, it was the best option open to them. According to the research he had done, the mononoke could be driven away by having a priest recite Buddhist sutras. Sam reasoned that Vin would be just as good as a priest. He had been physically marked by spirits the year before—a symbol meaning "rebirth" had been etched on the palm of his right hand—and with Vin's extrasensory abilities, Sam thought he had a greater connection to the spiritual plane, possibly a greater influence than a Buddhist priest.
Sam had spent quite a bit of time the previous night going over the pronunciation of the sutras, making sure Vin knew exactly what to say, when to say it, and how to say it. He was positive Vin would be able to perform the necessary ceremony. It had just taken a little convincing for everyone else to come around.
Pushing off the Impala, Sam marched to the front porch. Vin joined him, his hand nervously rubbing the Native American healing pouch around his neck.
"Game on."
His brother's voice made Sam turn. He was puzzled to see Dean was holding a baseball bat. "What's that for?" he asked.
"Anything comes flying at me," Dean said, "I'm gonna make like Barry Bonds."
"What, take steroids and lie about it?"
Rolling his eyes, Dean amended, "Okay, then I'll make like Joe DiMaggio."
Sam nodded. "Better." He turned to Vin. "All set?"
Buck growled, "I still think I should go in with you."
It'd been decided the night before—against Buck's wishes—that he and Ezra would stay outside, just in case back up was needed. It was obvious to Sam his opinion had not changed overnight.
Dean, of course, took it as a slight. "Oh, so you've had lots of experience fighting angry spirits, have you?"
"No, but I've had lots of experience watching Vin's back." Buck glared at the younger man.
Sam winced. Before it could get any uglier, he looked at Buck and promised, "We'll take care of him."
Buck looked unconvinced, but remained silent.
Taking a deep breath, Sam opened the door and walked inside. The house was quiet, nothing moved. Slowly they made their way to the dining room. All the debris was lying where it'd fallen the day before—everything except the doll. It was standing on the dining room table, and seemed to be watching them as they approached.
"I think I need to change my vote," Dean said out of the side of his mouth. "Buck was right: dolls are creepy."
"Ditto," Vin said. "But if you tell Bucklin I said so, I'll deny it."
Slowly taking up a position that put him between the doll and Vin, Sam asked, "You ready? Because once we start, we need to finish."
"Let's do it." Vin raised the index card that Sam had used to write everything out phonetically for him. He cleared his throat and started chanting.
As Vin's voice rang out, Sam felt the atmosphere in the room change, growing heavy. The doll itself didn't move, but the remaining dishes rattled ominously.
Sam heard the squeak of flesh against wood as his brother's grip on the bat tightened. He reflexively did the same with the shotgun. Nothing flew at them. However, the longer it went on with nothing happening, the tenser Sam got. By the time Vin reached the last chant, he was ready to snap.
Vin stopped talking and the room grew silent. They waited.
Sam's eyes darted from wall to wall, watching for aggressive movement.
"That it?" Dean asked, letting the bat slip.
"Looks like," Sam answered with a hesitant nod.
"That was pretty anti-climactic," Vin said, just before Dean's hand slapped over his mouth.
"Never say things like that," Dean scolded. "Are you asking for trouble?" He released Vin with a glare.
"Sorry," Vin said, biting his lip to hide an inappropriate smile.
Snatching a towel from the kitchen counter, Sam wrapped it around the doll. "We'll take care of this," he said. Most mononoke lived around shrines, temples, and graveyards. They weren't going to worry about looking for a shrine or temple, but they ended up at graveyards a lot, so he and Dean could just leave a little trinket at the next one.
Vin left the house first, smiling as he was accosted by his teammates.
"Well?" Buck asked, looking him up and down, checking for injuries.
"What happened?" Ezra demanded.
"This house is clean," Vin reported with a lilt.
Dean hid his face and groaned. "Oh, man, that was lame."
Sam punched him lightly in the arm. "You're just jealous you didn't get to say it first."
"It worked," Vin reported, "just like Sam said it would. We got the doll and nothing tried to kill us. So we can tell the Harpers they can come home."
Buck grudgingly conceded, "You guys seem to know your stuff after all."
"Don't strain yourself there, Chuckles," Dean derided.
"You should know," Ezra said smoothly, "having a decent wingman increases your chances of scoring by 32%. Not that either of you need such assistance, of course."
Dean and Buck eyed each other speculatively.
"And I'm fine." Vin held out his arms for emphasis. He turned and started down the porch steps. "Told ya there was nothing to worry about. Probably has to do with my cat-like reflexes." The last word had barely left Vin's lips when he tripped on the final step and plunged face-first toward the cement. He stuck out his hand to catch himself and was startled by a snap as his wrist broke.
"Aw, shit, not again." Vin rolled over, holding his arm to his chest. "Um…"
"Looks like we're going for a ride, Morris." Buck helped Vin up. "You boys can join us at the hospital if you'd like."
"Oh, no, that's okay," Dean quickly stammered, shaking his head. "We've kind of had our fill of hospitals for a while. Besides, Sammy-boy's got a lead on a necromancer down in Memphis and I'd hate to miss out on that."
Sam smiled indulgently at Dean. "Yeah, we'll catch up with you guys later."
"Just try not to poach our job next time."
"How else would you solve anything?" Dean shot back with a grin as he pulled the driver's side door open.
"Yes, it's amazing the OSIR got along without you for so many years," Ezra commented. "However did we do it?"
"Dumb luck," Dean guessed.
Sam waved goodbye as his brother gunned the engine.
"Well, they were…interesting," Buck said as he helped Vin into their rental car.
Ezra climbed behind the wheel and turned on the engine, shifting into gear as soon as Buck was situated in back.
"Ah, they grow on you," Vin said, wincing as the car jerked forward. He leaned back against the headrest and closed his eyes. There was only one thing he could think of to top this.
A phone rang from the backseat.
"No no no no no." Vin jumped directly past humiliation to dread.
"It's Chris," Buck said, tossing the phone up front.
As if it would be anyone else. Vin picked up the phone as if it were poisonous. "I'm supposed to be the psychic—how the hell does he do that?"
"Dumb luck." Buck cackled.


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