5.7.2013 NI is officially 2 YEARS OLD! Thanks guys for making those years amazing!
FOLLOW YOUR INSTINCTS
Welcome! Have you ever wondered what your favorite supernatural TV fandoms would look like if they were all literally interconnected? If Damon from Vampire Diaries heard about Sunnydale becoming a crater? What if 'fighting for vampire rights' in True Blood mattered in the world of Supernatural? Want to find out how your favorite characters will react in a world like this? Join in and don't forget to follow your instincts!
Canons: True Blood, Being Human (BBC), Vampire Diaries, Buffy & Angel, & Supernatural.
This was ridiculous; Bobby was family. He was one of the few people in her life who had actually earned the title of uncle that had been bestowed on pretty much any hunter who’d come into the Roadhouse when she’d been a kid, one of the few people that Jo really respected, and who more than deserved that respect. This was ridiculous, because she’d spent a hell of a lot of time with Dean, recently, and helping to rehabilitate Sam, and yet...coming out to the salvage yard to see Bobby was too much for her? In the beginning Jo really had been too scared to contact any of those people she’d been close to when she’d been alive before. She’d tried Dean a couple of times, but his number had been dead, and that had been the end of that, really; she’d needed a chance to readjust, to make sure that she wasn’t going to go on some kind of killing rampage. And then there was the whole thing where she had died to buy their asses more time, and being alive again kind of negated that whole thing, didn’t it? She had died so that they could continue the fight, and it didn’t sound like it had gone down as well as they had wanted it to, but the world hadn’t ended, either. Sam might have died, but the world hadn’t ended – and he was back, too. If people were coming back to life, why wasn’t her mother here? Jo had to wonder that. She had to wonder why her, why Sam, but why not her mom, because at the end of the day, she had really been the one to sacrifice something. Jo had been dying anyway, she’d been practically dead while they’d been building the bomb, and Ellen had been the one to press that detonator, to really die for the greater good. Jo was glad to be back, she was glad to be alive again, but she didn’t think that anything would make her happier than seeing her mother again would.
But she wasn’t, and that was just one of those things; instead, Jo had settled into her life, she’d gotten a job so that she could afford a motel room and to run her car, buy her ammo, not starve to death, and if there was one good thing about this vampires revealing themselves crap, it was that there was always something to fight. A lot of the time she did it with Dean, because they’d been teaming up since before they’d found Sam again, and she was always going to be happy to have him at her back, but she was working her own cases too, clearing out nests, acting like some drunk sorority chick to lure out those vamps that would have been taking advantage of that, and killing them instead. She certainly didn’t have to search, if she wanted something to kill; all she had to do was go outside at night. She was never going to understand why the vampires had decided to reveal themselves, she was never going to get why people had been dumb enough to think that giving them rights was a good thing, because it really, really wasn’t, but this was the situation that Jo had woken up in, and she couldn’t do anything about that now. She couldn’t change the fact that vampires were out of the coffin, because she hadn’t even been alive at the time that it had happened. There had been a hell of a lot of catching up for her to do, and she still felt like she was missing pieces of information, sometimes. When the world tried to end on a regular basis, two years was a hell of a long time to be gone. Really, though, when it came down to it, she was just glad that the boys were still alive. She was just glad that Bobby was still alive.
But it had still taken her this long to come out to see him. There was always something to do in the city, with her stupid shifts and the goddamned vampires, and though she was pretty sure that Bobby knew she was alive, because it was the kinda think Jo expected Dean to have told him, she’d not spoken to him since she’d gotten back. The longer she left it, the harder it seemed to become, and she didn’t know why that was, not when the man was family – and God knew she had little of that left, now. Bobby, Sam and Dean. Those were the most important people in her life, and it was time for Jo to do the whole reuniting thing. Probably get more holy water and salt thrown in her face, if she knew Bobby, but she guessed that she could live with that, as much as she didn’t want to have to go through it again. She’d done it to herself, Dean had watched her do it; she didn’t know why she was back, or what had done it to her, something she was hoping Bobby might be able to find some answers to, but Jo was one hundred percent certain that she wasn’t a demon. And she really, really hoped that he might have some answers for her, she thought as she knocked firmly on his door, not entirely sure what reaction she was going to get, whether he’d want to hug her or threaten to kill her. Jo could really have done with some answers.
Bobby had never been a family man; never had children of his own in the fear of turning into his father, but he made a pretty good adoptive uncle. He’d taken the young Winchesters under his wing, helping them in any way he could, and saving their asses on a few occasions. Family didn’t end in blood, that was on thing Bobby believed in, and his family sure as hell didn’t end with just the Winchesters either, he’d made a good impression on quite a few of the hunters that were around and not a lot of people had anything bad to say about him really, so it was no wonder that he had grown fond of the Harvelle’s. He treated them like family just as much as he did anyone else, and he would do anything for them, so it was no surprise that he was heartbroken to find out the Jo and Ellen had died to buy the boys more time. He had hoped for no casualties on their little escapade to go tear the devil a new one, but it had just been wishful thinking, and when the boys rang to inform him of this, he couldn’t say he was shocked, but he was sure as Hell sorry for even letting them join the boys on their little mission. If Bobby had, had it his own way, he would have gone himself, and given Lucifer what for, he’d anything to protect his family, and he was making up for it now, helping the boys out whenever he could, but nothing could change the past. Bobby was fully aware who was responsible for setting off the hellhounds, and if he ever saw her again, he would pump her from head to toe in rock salt. Matters were worse than he’d originally planned them to be, with Lucifer escaping again, he’d assured Dean that Jo and Ellen’s death weren’t for nothing, not if they cleaned up this mess just like they had last time, and this time they had to have a sure fire way of keeping Lucifer under lock and key.
As usually, Bobby was manning the phones, waiting for a call, any one of them could ring at any time, and that’s when he would be useful again, but he hoped so badly that they wouldn’t. The problem with Bobby was he was bound to a contract, and as much as he loved helping the boys, he needed to find a loophole somewhere and get himself out of it, without pissing off Crowley too much. His contract had been drawn up to help Dean and Sam in the first place, and now they’d got what they needed, Crowley was being highly resistant in giving it back, using excuse after excuse. Dean had offered to go after the demon himself, but Bobby had flatly refused, knowing that if he did let Dean go retrieve the deal, it would either land him in a heap load of trouble, or another deal would be made and Dean would land himself a one way ticket down to Hell and straight into Lucifer’s hands. He couldn’t have that, not under his watch, not at all, especially since he had promised himself, at the death of John that he would protect the boys for as long as he was alive and kicking. Helping them from beyond the grave would prove to be a bit of a challenge, and as stubborn as Bobby was, he was certain that in Hell they don’t exactly let you out to give friendly advice. No, it just wouldn’t do, Bobby would have to find his own way out of his mess, no matter how many books he had to read or how many methods he must try to finally burn the contract and regain his soul, but he was enjoying the use of his legs and they had been included in the contract, but they weren’t worth enough for a lifetime in Hell.
Bobby sat at his desk in his living room, scratching his forehead as he delved into the pages of a book from his vast collection, searching for answers. He’d been staring at the pages for a good hour, and nothing seemed to come up, no clues, no methods, not anything, causing him to slam the heavy book shut in frustration. He rose from his chair, trundling slowly to another bookshelf, rummaging through its contents to find another book that may help him but it was to no avail. He froze as he heard the firm knock at the door; his mind swimming with possibilities to who it could have been. It couldn’t have been the cops or they would have announced themselves, and it also couldn’t have been the boys as they would have just walked in, this was pretty much their home now and they were welcome whenever they pleased. He grabbed the sawn-off single-barrel shotgun from the table, and loaded it slowly, his eyes fixated on the door, waiting as he put the shots into the gun, but he didn’t have time to be waiting, he had things to be doing, books to be reading, and he wanted to know who was at the door now. He straightened up his cap and rolled up the sleeves on his plaid shirt before walking with confidence to the door, his boots banging carelessly on the floor, his gun raised. He pulled the door open a crack, and noticed a short, blonde female standing on his porch. He let the door swing open on his hinges as he lowered the shotgun, her face familiar in his mind, he could not believe what he was seeing, not after all this time. “Jo…?” His voice asked in a loud whisper, shock showing on his face, but something wasn’t right here, not at all, how come she was alive. He reached deep into his pocket, pulling out a flask, taking a drink from it, before throwing its contents over the girl. To his surprise, she didn’t react, not in the slightest, no skin burning, no screaming or anything, she was… well human. It was truly Jo, and even though Bobby wasn’t generally one for showing affection, she deserved it. “It’s good to see you.” He grabbed her, and pulled her into a hug, squeezing her tightly, like someone who had just been reunited with someone they hadn’t seen in a long time, but this was different, she’d been dead, and now she was back, and Bobby was relieved that it wasn’t under the control of some demon, but he had to ask why, and by whom. “I can’t believe you’re back… I mean, how?”
People died all the time. It was what happened in their world, what happened when you fought the kind of monsters that most people believed only to exist in nightmares; people hunted, they died, and yes, it sucked a whole load, but it was just how things happened. She’d grown up in the Roadhouse, for goodness sake, and seen more hunters than most did, since they tended to be solitary people, aside from when they wanted a drink, and Jo knew just how many had ended up dead. It wasn’t unusual, and it was always sad, and terrible, to hear that someone else they knew had been taken down by the monsters that they fought, but that was life, wasn’t it? When your job was as dangerous as hunting was, when you constantly fought things that were so much stronger than you were, you expected to get hurt, and Jo was pretty sure that people expected to die, too. That didn’t mean that they wanted to die, there was absolutely a difference, but very few hunters lived to be her mom’s age, or Bobby’s age, let alone to be old enough to get a retirement home and pension. She knew what it was like, to lose somebody; her dad’s death had been the thing that had really motivated Jo to become a hunter, as much as she was sure that it would have happened eventually anyway, and she never quite stopped feeling his loss – but carrying his knife, doing what he did, it made her feel close to him again, like he was watching over her. She liked to think that her dad was in Heaven, even if she hadn’t seen him when she’d been there. She liked to think that he had found his way to the part of Heaven that she and her mom had been in, that they’d been reunited at last, that they had a little slice of Roadhouse forever. It was a nice thought; Jo didn’t know how true it was, but she didn’t want to think about that. The fact that they were both dead sucked; she had to think something good about it, didn’t she?
She didn’t feel bad about the fact that she’d been dead, herself, she didn’t blame anybody for it; if anything, Jo felt bad about the fact that the plan hadn’t quite worked the way that they’d wanted to, and that both she and her mom had died in one fell swoop. They’d been a family, albeit an unorthodox one, and that had to be hard, for the people who were left behind. It was always hard for the people who’d been left behind. And Dean, in particular...he’d lost everybody except Bobby, but now she was back, Sam was back, and there seemed to be a whole lot of resurrection going on, recently; Jo absolutely had questions about it, she absolutely had things that she wanted to know, but at the end of the day, these things took time. She wasn’t expecting to turn up on Bobby’s doorstep and for him to just automatically be able to tell her why she was alive again. Who knew what had done it—she saw no reason why it would have been an angel, but getting hold of Cas was basically impossible, so she didn’t actually know for sure, though she suspected that if it had been him, he might actually have told her by now, however freaking elusive he was. But she’d died. She’d died a good death, and yeah, she was young, but young people died all the time. Jo wasn’t the sort of person that got brought back to life – that was reserved for people like Dean, good, strong people. Now, Jo knew that she was both good and strong, too, there was no way that she was the kind of person to have false modesty, but she wasn’t in his league. She hadn’t saved the world as many times as he had. She saw no reason why an angel would save her and then not tell her anything about it, and so she just hoped that there would be something in one of Bobby’s books to help her out. Not knowing was frustrating as hell, however much she distracted herself with killing vampires – and that was always the best distraction there was.
It felt like she was waiting for an age, hearing him come towards the door, and not looking even remotely surprised at the shotgun that was pointed at her for a moment before he lowered it. “Hi, Bobby,” she said with a shrug of her shoulders that indicated, ‘hey, surprise’. She knew that she should have said something about being alive sooner, and now that she was here, now that she was seeing him, she wished that she had done; it had been unfair to stay away in New York, trying to answer her questions on her own. Jo wasn’t entirely surprised at the water in her face, wiping it away with her sleeve. “You’re the third person who’s done that, and I’m still not a demon.” It had been the first thing that she’d checked; Jo had not wanted to be back alive if she wasn’t herself, if there was the possibility that she’d hurt the few remaining people that she loved. She smiled as he hugged her, hugging him back tightly; this was like coming home, just as much as seeing Dean had been. “I missed you too.” She hugged him tightly for a moment before she stepped back, smiling. “I have no idea. I was hoping you’d be able to find me some answers.”
Bobby was so used to his family dying around him; first his wife, Dean, Jo and finally Sam, but they had all come back at some time or another, and they all came back better than they had before. Yet, it still hurt every time, no father should ever outlive his children, even if they were not bound by blood, they were still his children, all of them. He stood by them no matter what and looked after them whatever the consequence; he was a truly devout role model for them. He loved the Winchesters and Jo as his own, and one by one, they had been taken from him and one by one they had been given back, like some cruel life trick. Bobby was getting old, and time was of little importance to him, but he had to get his family ready, for anything and everything. His family was completed again, except for the absence of his wife, whom he was sure he did not want returning from the grave, not again, as for his children, he did not want to see them back six feet under, not until he had managed to get himself there first. That time would be soon, if he wasn’t mistaken and ten years would give him enough time to prepare the boys for the world without him, and then he would be at peace… well at as much peace as a grumpy old codger could get after years of crap that life had beaten him with. All he needed now was Ellen to be alive and well and he could have the whole group back together, whether it was that they should all use his home as a safe haven, or whether they should all go their separate ways and still keep in contact, that was all he asked of his family. Bobby needed a family, just so that he could feel again, so that he had something to keep living for, much to the dismay of that bullet in his pocket.
Bobby was filled with shock, even though Jo had been stood at his door for a few moments, he still was unable to take it all in. He just wanted to hug her, for a very long time, and never ever let go, not again, not ever. He’d never really told her how much he appreciated her, not as his own, not as a daughter. He moved out of the way and gestured for her to pass through, to enter his home, and to make it her own again. He trundled slowly to the fridge, still not completely used to having his legs fully functioning, before pulling out too beers from the fridge, passing Jo as an apology for splashing her with holy water. He was very sceptical of people coming back from the dead, and even though he was convinced it was Jo, he wasn’t too keen on the possible list of motives, considering it stretched longer than his arm and off into the distance somewhere where he was unable to see it. He set his gun down on the table and took a large gulp from his drink, staring directly at Jo, his eyes quizzing her. He was just glad to have her back in all honesty, she filled a bit more of that gap in his rusted old heart and gave him one more reason to keep breathing. He wondered about calling the boys in, yet he had the feeling that they probably both already knew by now, considering Bobby was generally the last to know about anything, but being the last to know is better than not knowing at all. Jo had been closer to Dean than she had to Bobby; but he was going to make up for it, make up for all the times she’d missed, teach her a trick or two about hunting, and help her in any way he could to help her ease back in to life.
“I’m sorry, I just had to check, thought it might have been… never mind.” He started, but shook it off, unable to tell her of what he’d done while she was gone. She wouldn’t be exactly delighted to hear that even though she was now back, he’ be gone soon enough and she’d be left without the father figure once more, and that’s something he couldn’t bring himself to do, no matter what the circumstances were. “Third person? Who were the other two?” He asked chuckling to himself as he took another swig from his beer bottle. “As for answers, you’d be lucky, but I say we either got a really generous angel on our hands, or a really stupid demon playing games. Either way, I don’t trust ‘em.” He wasn’t going to give up that easy though, especially for Jo, she was one of the nicest people he knew, and if she wanted answers, he sure as Hell would be finding them before he joined Lucifer six feet under. He placed his beer bottle gently on the table before plodding over to his vast collection of books, his eyes scanning over them as he messed with his cap. His eyes finally snapped to a rather old, thick looking book, leather bound and earthly worn, he took it from the shelf and slammed it on his desk, dust exploding from its pages and filling the air. His hand wafted around moving the dust but that didn’t stop some of it invading his lungs and triggering his lungs into a coughing fit. “Let’s see what we’ve got here… shritgas, ghosts, crossroads demons, hell hounds…” he slammed the book closed and shuffled his hands onto the old shelves again, looking for another book to start looking in, before pausing and looking towards Jo. “Feel free to help me, any time you like sweetheart. Two heads are better than one; except when Dean is involved.” He laughed to himself, turning back to his collection of literature and delving back onto the shelves.
Family had always meant more than just blood, to Jo. It wasn’t that every hunter in the world was automatically family, because that sort of thing had to be earned, very definitely; it meant that someone was more than a friend, more than an ally, more than just someone who could be trusted. A lot of the hunters in the bar had been her uncles, when she’d been little; honorary, of course, but they had been the regulars, the ones that she’d seen a lot, rather than the people who just popped in occasionally, who she tended to just call Mr Whatever. She hadn’t liked all of them, and sometimes she’d resented the fact that she had to call them uncle, but some of them, she had really liked. She’d loved Uncle John, because he’d always had a smile for her, he’d always told her the best stories, and paid attention to her, and hadn’t minded in the slightest when she’d sat on his lap and he’d had to talk to her, instead of the other hunters. But then her daddy had died and Uncle John hadn’t come into the Roadhouse anymore, and she’d missed him, because he’d been family – and so it followed, she guessed, that his sons would have become family, too, and while she was closer to Dean, always had been, she loved both Sam and Dean a lot. Bobby had been an uncle too, and while she might have dropped the title now that she was older, it didn’t change how she felt about him, it didn’t change the fact that she loved him, or that she was so, so glad to see him. She had missed her little family so much, and it wasn’t the same, without her mom, it never would be, but it was still good, she thought, it was still something that she was immeasurably glad to have back. These were the people who made Jo feel as though she belonged, even though she’d been dead for two years.
And she couldn’t imagine what it had to be like, on the reverse side. She knew how hard it had been, when she’d heard about Dean’s deal, when she’d heard that he’d gone to Hell, and how much of a relief it was when he came back again, even if she’d been the other side of the country, and she hadn’t seen him – Jo knew that she would have hugged him so tightly, if she had been there when he’d come back, because maybe they hadn’t been so close, not before the world started ending, but she had still liked him a lot. But she had been gone two years, and not with some demon deal, either, but being torn apart and then blown up...that was pretty damn final, if you asked her, and yet here she was, and she didn’t ever want to let go of Bobby, because God, she had missed him. She hadn’t realised quite how much she’d missed him until now; he was definitely the father figure in her life, had been on and off since her daddy died, and if there was anybody in this world who could figure out what had brought her back, and why, Jo knew that it was going to be him. When she’d reunited with Dean, they’d gone hunting, preferring that to sappy displays of affection—but she had to admit that she was kind of enjoying this display of affection, right now. She felt loved. She always knew that she had been, because sure, her mom had never been overt about it, but it had also been blatantly obvious, especially with how overprotective she had been. She was supposed to be dead, but being back wasn’t an entirely terrible thing, even with all the questions, because Jo knew that she had her family with her.
“It’s fine, Bobby, you had to check that I’m not a demon,” she replied, and she got it, because that was what you expected, really; someone died and came back, and you had to figure that it was a bad thing, not a good one, because that was just the way that the world worked, and it was extremely unusual for good things to just happen for no apparent reason – especially to people like them. “Me and Dean. If you wanna check with salt and silver, too, that’s okay.” She’d done it, Dean had done it, Jo knew that nothing would have changed, but some people had to see it with their own eyes, too, and she figured that Bobby was one of those people. She drank gratefully from her beer, watching him as he moved about, looking incredibly young, for a moment; this wasn’t home, because home would always be the Roadhouse, even if it had burned down long before she’d died, but it felt like it, regardless. “I don’t see why an angel would bring me back, though, not when Dean’s already here,” she shrugged, and as for a demon bringing her back—again, she had to ask why. Why her? She was just an ordinary hunter; there was nothing special about her, not in terms of the world, and that wasn’t Jo being self-deprecating or having low self-esteem, that was just a fact. She followed him over to the bookshelves, hand clasped around the bottle – and though she wouldn’t have admitted it, probably wasn’t even aware of it, in fact, the mention of hellhounds, even just in passing, was enough to make a flash of something flicker across her face, pain and fear and death, somehow, just for a moment. Hellhounds had killed her, and Jo wasn’t afraid of much, but she was definitely afraid of them. As he spoke again, Jo shook her head, snapping out of it. “Oh, sure, sorry,” she muttered, putting down her beer and pulling out the nearest book—not that she had the faintest idea what she was looking for.
Bobby had done something majorly stupid whilst Jo had been… well wherever the hell she’d been, and he certainly wasn’t willing to tell her what, even if she did want to know. How could anyone tell someone they had ten good years left before he was burning alive down in the rotting pit called Hell thanks to some stupid deal? He was surprised she hadn’t noticed, with the whole fact he was up and walking about, and if he recalled the last time she’d seen him was when he was in that blasted contraption the doctors liked to call a wheelchair, but he knew she didn’t really know why know why he was in it in the first place, so it was no bother to him. He had to prepare for when she did eventually find out, because he was more than certain that Dean would blurt something like that out sooner or later and land him right in it with another member of their family. Ten years; that’s all he had to prepare the kids. Ten measly years and that would be it, Jo and the boys would then have to work out everything themselves, no calling Bobby for answers, no barging into his house and hoping that he knew exactly which books to start with, they would all be things that the boys would have to do for themselves when he was gone. He wasn’t sure where he’d be going, but he had a gut-wrenching feeling that it would be down on the rack in Hell, rather than the comfort of Heaven, despite all the time he’d spent in the company of an angel. It was all a case of if the bad things you’ve done in your life outweighs the good, and Bobby knew full well that nothing would ever make up for what he’d done to his wife… twice, especially considering he struggled to even forgive himself for it, and that made him his own worst judge, jury and executioner.
Looking at Jo made Bobby realise just how much he would be leaving behind, especially now that she was back, and if he was going to be leaving her without the answers she wanted, that would make his parting that tad-bit harder for him. He never liked leaving a ‘job’ unfinished, and that’s how he was going to treat Jo’s case, as just another job with a perfectly logical explanation, even if right now it was completely hidden from his view. He knew it would take time, and patience, and that there was probably no answer in any of the tatty books he kept in his house, but he had to give her some form of hope, something that said he’d find out no matter what. He could ask Crowley to find some information for him, not that he’d agree to it, nor would he help him, especially when Crowley held all the cards, and there was no guarantee he had any answers, so that would have to be his last resort. No matter how many books he had, if it turned out it was an angel that had brought her back, nothing in his possession would be able to work out why. No, if it was an angel he would just have to call on Castiel and ask for some explanations, or see if he could tell him which angel it was so he could bring him forth and question him. But if it was a demon, that when they would have to panic, because if a demon had brought Jo back, only they would know what horrible, sadistic purpose she would be later used for, and the thought alone sent a rage through Bobby, he didn’t want her to be some demons puppet. It was being possessed by a demon that had landed Bobby in that blasted wheelchair and even though he was up and walking about now, he was still very much ashamed that he’d let himself drop so far to be taken over.
“I’ve had too many demons show up on my doorstep, I didn’t want yer to be one too, and well, yer ain’t, which is good.” He was genuinely relieved that she hadn’t been a demon, he knew her coming back wasn’t with the best intentions, but he’d help her get out of it, keeping her alive, but without the strings that have come attached to her without her really knowing what they are. “No, I trust yers and Dean’s judgement… no point going through it all a third time.” He’d done the whole process too many times before, with Sam and dean where he tested them, putting rock salt in their drinks without their knowledge, but if Dean and Jo had already proven that she was purely Jo then that was good enough for him. He chuckled to himself as she apologised and pulled a book out from the shelves, she didn’t seem to know what she was doing and that just reminded Bobby of what they were like when they were kids, so small and desperately trying to pull out the heaviest book they could find on the shelf just to prove how strong they were, and now here Jo was, all grown up and pulling a book from the shelf with ease. He took a swig from his beer on the table and continued to look through his book, but he knew it was pointless, there wasn’t going to be a darned thing in any of his books, no matter how much he wanted there to be. He massaged his forehead under his hat with his large hand, trying to think as he did so, racking his brains for some sort of clue as to where he could get information that wouldn’t get him killed. “There’s not a lot about angels in my books… then again there’s not a lot on angel lore… they’re all very complicated and secretive so I can’t guarantee we’ll find anything, but I’ll keep trying for yer okay? Whatever it is you’ve gotten into, we’ll pull you out.”
Why was it now, when she was with someone she considered to be family, that Jo suddenly felt alone? Dean and Bobby were all that she had left, and suddenly, she missed everyone else. She missed her dad, she missed the assholes at the Roadhouse, she missed Ash. She missed her mom so, so badly, and she missed Sam too; it was amazing to see Bobby again, of course it was, and she felt terrible for leaving it so long to come back here, but it also made everything real, suddenly. She was back, no longer dead, no longer in Heaven. Something had brought her back, alone, and she didn’t know what—and that was kind of terrifying, actually. When you were a hunter, you questioned everything, and things like this, good things, they didn’t just happen spontaneously. No way in hell. It wasn’t that she had wanted to come back, particularly, because, you know, she’d been dead, and not in the whole being tortured for eternity sense, so she’d been content with it. She’d had a good life, she’d died, and that was that, really. Jo had never expected to come back, she hadn’t wanted to come back. And here she was, and yeah, it was extremely disorientating. Once you were dead, you were dead. You didn’t just...wake up again. Or, okay, so that wasn’t entirely true, since she knew more than one person who’d come back from the dead, but Jo was not Dean Winchester. This sort of thing didn’t happen to her; of course it sucked that she’d died, of course she would have wanted to stay alive and carry on fighting, but this sort of thing happened, didn’t it? People died too soon, and she had bought the Winchesters more time, and that was never going to be something that she regretted. She’d died, and Jo was actually okay with that; she hadn’t wanted to come back. Not really.
But here she was; the world had a tendency to do things differently to the way that you wanted it do, it always seemed to come and bite you in the ass one more time. If she had understood, perhaps this would have been easier. If she’d understood, if she’d known what had brought her back, if she’d had any kind of understanding about how this had happened beyond the fact that she’d just woken up in a freaking field and was meant to be okay with that, then it might have been easier. But no. She was here, but her mom wasn’t, even though they’d died together. She was here, but it was two years later, and there was no way in hell that anybody she knew would do a crossroads deal for her, especially not so long after the fact. If she’d even thought that somebody had sold their soul for her, Jo would have kicked their ass ten ways to Sunday, because she didn’t want that. Maybe they hadn’t wanted her to die, but that was what happened, and nobody was going to die in ten years’ time on her account, thank you very much. But she had discussed the possibility of that happening with Dean, and come to the conclusion that it wasn’t that; the only people she knew who were still alive were him and Bobby, and it was clear from their reactions that neither of them had done it for her. Good. She did not want this. She didn’t want to be here, not if it was at the cost of someone else’s soul, and of course she was going to make the most of everything, and kill as many evil vampire sons of bitches as she could, but Jo still believed that she should have stayed dead. As it was...she’d make the most of it, of course, but she needed to find out why. She had to find out how she was here, once again, when she’d been completely torn apart by hellhounds.
Bobby would help. Jo was so, so glad to see him, whatever she was feeling, and she knew for a fact that he would help. If you needed someone to find things out for you, everyone knew that Bobby Singer was the person to go to, and Jo was lucky enough to be able to call him family, as well. “If I’d been a demon, Dean wouldn’t’ve let me come,” she said simply; he’d have exorcised her, killed her, whatever he had to, and that was exactly how she wanted it to be. It was how it should have been. Your friend got turned into a monster, you killed them, not let them by just because they’d once been your friend. If she’d been a demon, Jo wouldn’t have been herself, and she would have wanted him to kill her, very differently. The same would apply if ever she got turned into a vampire; she didn’t want to live as a monster. She didn’t want to hurt people. She still wasn’t entirely convinced that she wouldn’t; she’d mentioned the possibility that someone was using her as a kind of sleeper agent to Dean, and that bothered her. If someone had brought her back, given her life again, only to pull her strings like some freaking puppet and make her hurt the people that she was close to, then Jo didn’t want that either. She nodded, taking a seat and flicking through the book she’d chosen without any real idea of what she was looking for. These things had all kinds of lore, sure, but brought back from the dead lore? Not so much. “I just...don’t get why they’d bring me back. Whoever they are. There are plenty of other hunters around to deal with the vampire problem, and it’s been two years.”
you gotta know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em KNOW WHEN TO WALK AWAY AND KNOW WHEN TO RUN you never count your money, when you’re sitting at the table THERE’LL BE TIME ENOUGH FOR COUNTING WHEN THE DEALIN’S DONE
If anyone’s life had ever been thrown to the dogs, it would have to have been Bobby Singers, completely and utterly thrown to the dogs as if it were some chew toy that never really mattered to anything, a piece of plastic that could be ripped apart and no one would care. He’d lost so many people in his life, friends, family, and that was just the beginning of it, with the apocalypse having come and passed and threatening to rear its ugly head again, Bobby’s worst fears were finally coming true. He could lose everyone all over again and this time he had no answers to help them out, nothing to stop it from occurring, and that made him a useless bitter old fool. He stood by the thought that no parent should have to bury their child and even if they weren’t really his, he still treated them as such, and he wasn’t prepared to live long enough to bury them all over again. No this time, if anyone was going to go down it would be him, he would buy them all enough time to do what they needed, to get everything ready and make sure that when the time came, they could get rid of Lucifer once and for all. He wasn’t going to outlive them, he was getting old as it was and the thing was, he didn’t much care for life, hell he kept a bullet that he’d been meaning to put through his skull in his pocket, and that was accounting for something, the fact that he hadn’t fired the damned thing into his brain yet and ended it all there and then was surprising enough, but he’d promised the boys. He was getting on in years, hell, he was at that age where he should have been sat at home playing backgammon with himself, but with the world the way it was, there was no chance of that, there was never a chance of a normal life for ANY hunter.
He had hoped that there would be just a slight chance of a normal, healthy life for Dean, Sam and hell he had hoped for Jo too until her unfortunate passing away, but now she was here, he was hoping for it all the same, hoping that they’d all get out. He hadn’t wanted any of them involved in the first place, hell he’d tried with Dean and Sam before, opting to play baseball with them rather than teaching them how to aim, and all to the aggravation of their father. Any chance at happiness and he would throw the boys through the door and try to lock it before fate somehow managed to drag them back in and deeper, like a parasite that just wouldn’t let go. He wanted the boys to settle down, have kids, grow old with their wives, and not be killing monsters for the rest of their lives, monsters that they should never have had to meet in the first place. Telling a kid that the monster under their bed was real was something that Bobby had highly frowned upon and he had scorned John for doing so, he never gave the kids chance to grow up, they never even had a choice all because their father had decided that they were gonna learn to hunt so that they could hunt down the demon that killed there mom, and Bobby just didn’t agree with it at all. If he had, had it his way, the boys wouldn’t have learnt about demons and vampires till they were older, in their twenties at least, giving them the chance to have a proper childhood, and they wouldn’t have been carted around everywhere that there was a job, it just messed up school for them and they never really had any friends. Bobby couldn’t change the past, no matter how badly he wanted to, but he could ensure that their future was safe, even from the damned apocalypse.
Bobby was always happy to help, especially when it boiled down to his kids, they were everything to him and keeping them alive meant a lot more to him than his own life right now. He’d outlived his sell-by-date and all these kids were youngsters, people that still had a good 20/30 years of fight left in them and he was willing to bet his own life that they would grow old fighting or sure as hell die trying like they had for most of their lives, and that was saying something. He nodded in acknowledgement of what she had just said about Dean, because it rang true and that was all that mattered. He knew that the boys had his back and they would always check before sending anyone Bobby’s way, just in case it was an old demon looking for vengeance or whatnot. With a big sigh he continued flicking through books, trying to find a logical explanation, but he knew the answer weren’t in a book. “I’d suggest asking Cas, but rat bastard seems to be busy.” Bobby sighed, realising that they were swiftly ruining out of sources, but his memory recalled other angels, angels that had been mentioned, in fact, he even swore he heard Dean say he’d met one posing as a hunter, but he couldn’t be sure until he asked, but that could wait. He wasn’t going to let some unknown angel come round here and try and figure out what’s wrong with Jo, he didn’t trust new people and as far as he was concerned he’d only met one angel that wasn’t trying to start the apocalypse. He looked over at Jo as she spoke and twitched his moustache in thought. “Then there’s definitely something afoot here, and whatever it is, I’m sorry to say, it aint gonna be pleasant so yer best be ready for it when the time comes.” Bobby finally said, admitting defeat after moments of consideration. “There ain’t no answer in no damned book.”
A lot had changed in two years. It was to be expected really, she guessed; two years was a long time, after all. She would have been twenty-six, if she hadn’t died, and now Jo was a little confused about her age. Going by her birth date, that was how old she was, but given that she’d been dead for two of those, she was still really just twenty-four...she guessed it wasn’t really important, as long as she remembered what was on her ID, and everyone was used to slightly funky ages now that vampires were public and it was perfectly normal to come across someone who was a couple of hundred years old. At least she’d not been dead for a century, she guessed, that would have been really weird, and none of her friends would have been alive. It would have been horrible, to wake up in a world that wasn’t the same, even slightly, that had none of the people she loved in it. Jo would have been alone, not knowing anybody at all, whereas now, she did know other hunters, even if she wasn’t close to them. A couple of years was a long time, sure, but she guessed that it could have been worse. And she’d come across Dean pretty quickly. He was helping her settle back in, catch up with what had been happening in the world, figure out the new technology, things like that. Jo hadn’t even realised that it was possible for cell phones to advance so much in such a short space of times, but the ones that were out now made the one she’d had when she’d been alive look like a freaking brick. How was that possible? Weren’t there more important things in the world for people to be focussing on, like, say, the fact that vamps were roaming freely and people actually seemed to be okay with that?
The stupidity of the general public didn’t seem to be one of those things that had changed, then; Jo had always been surprised by the different ways in which people would react to finding out that the monsters under their bed were real, and she guessed that maybe she shouldn’t have been shocked that there were people out there who were actually welcoming vampires into their lives. She failed to see their logic, though; sure, let’s be best friends with the pointy-toothed guy who can’t survive if he’s not slurping on human blood, that’s totally normal. What the hell was wrong with them? She didn’t think for a second that two years was long enough for the attitudes of vampires to be changed so entirely. They were vampires; presumably, their attitudes would never change, because they existed to feed from people. That was what they were there for, and she might not have known why, but Jo didn’t need to know why, just how to kill the blood-sucking bastards. She was glad that hunting still seemed to be the same. She was glad that Dean was the same, and it was literally like no time had passed at all, when she was with him; sure, she’d been dead, Sam wasn’t around anymore, but he still acted the same, he was still the same person, and having that in her life when everything else was just so freaking confusing right now was definitely something that Jo was grateful for. She was incredibly grateful that Dean was still around, and happy to have her tag along on hunts with him, even when he probably didn’t need to let her do that. She was glad that Bobby was here, too, exactly the same as he’d ever been, wandering around with his books and his phones and his hat—wandering. Bobby was...wandering. How had she not noticed that before? Was she freaking blind?!
“You’re...walking.” She hoped that he didn’t think that she sounded insensitive, or anything like that, but it had finally filtered into her mind, and...wow. Maybe things really were different, even with people who seemed the same. Jo had no idea, really, anymore, she really didn’t. And if she hadn’t noticed that, at first, what had she missed about Dean? Was the world really such a different place now? But it was a good thing, that Bobby could walk, a really good thing. She didn’t think she knew what had put him in a wheelchair, but it had seemed to be a pretty permanent thing, last time she’d been around here; maybe not everything that was going on in the world right now was terrible. “I’ve tried to get him to come down here, but he ain’t listening,” she agreed; she would have loved to talk to Cas, right now, but Jo had all but given up on that, for the time being. She’d pray, every now and again, but she wasn’t expecting anything to come from it, really, when it came down to it. He was busy, and the fact that she was alive clearly didn’t register for him, which implied that it hadn’t been him who had brought her back. That was something, she guessed. Or maybe that was a bad thing; at least she knew Cas was on their side. Jo didn’t know, anymore, and there sure as hell weren’t answers in this book that she was reading. “I didn’t think that it was gonna be good.” These things tended not to be, after all; this was the real world, where people died young and didn’t get to come back to life unless they sold their soul, something used them, or they had an angel on their shoulder. Jo had even tried praying to whatever angel might have been listening, and nothing. She sighed, putting the book aside, running her hand through her hair. “You got no idea at all?” She didn’t blame him, but she had kind of hoped that Bobby might have the answer, because Bobby always had the answers – and if she sounded a little disappointed, then it was because not knowing was killing her, and she didn’t understand what was happening in the slightest. “I don’t get it, Bobby. Why’d they want me back? I’ve been dead for two years, and I’m just another hunter.” That was a long time.
you gotta know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em KNOW WHEN TO WALK AWAY AND KNOW WHEN TO RUN you never count your money, when you’re sitting at the table THERE’LL BE TIME ENOUGH FOR COUNTING WHEN THE DEALIN’S DONE
Everything changed, it never stopped changing, sometimes a day would be okay, and the whiskey was there just to take the edge off, but most of the time the world was approaching an apocalypse and there was nothing much Bobby could do but drink away. He always had beer in, and his flask was never empty from the whiskey that he kept hidden in a cupboard behind his disk. A fuzzier view of the world, an ignorant approach was always better than a clear view of the bombs that life kept dropping on the world. It was constantly at war and there were no getting away from it, but they could delay it for as long as was possible, yet it was safe to say that Bobby was giving up slowly and hence him handing his soul over to a crossroads demon. He’d get round to finding a way to get out of it, but until then he’d rather forget it and deal with the fact that Lucifer was back out and that Jo was stood before him, very much alive as she had been since the hound incident. He hadn’t seen handiwork like that since Dean crawled out of the ground after his attack, but there wasn’t a scratch on him, not a damned thing except for that angel print on his arm that seemed to disappear entirely. He didn’t really much want to think about those times, they were like his children, and he’d seen their torn and battered bodies, and mourn their deaths, but yet here she was, spry as ever. It was an image that both pleased and disturbed him at the same time simply because there was no rational explanation and it was never good when someone got brought back, considering the amount of trouble it had gotten everyone into the last few times, it was Dean selling his soul to bring Sam back that had started this whole chain of events and the longer Bobby thought on it, the more upset he got.
That’s when it clicked in his head, Dean had come back in one piece after an angel had brought him back, it didn’t take a genius to put two and two together, but it could have easily been a demon. He was adamant that it wasn’t, and whoever had brought Jo hadn’t done it as a kindness to him or Dean, someone was being/going to be vicious and this was an attack on them. Bobby wasn’t going to let that happen, he was going to protect Jo as best he could and remove her from this situation as best he could even if that meant getting information from elsewhere. His books, though he had many, weren’t very helpful in situations like this and they hadn’t been very helpful when he was trying to find out what had brought Dean back from the grave and he suspected they would be just about as useful now with Jo. He had to think of a place with a large collection of books, one that he could access with ease and not completely have a restriction on which books he could look at. He thought about ringing around his hunter friends but he knew many of them would be just as confused as he was and that wearied him a little. He had to think straight, this problem wasn’t just going to solve itself, and even though most would look at this as a blessing, it was hard for Bobby to be such an optimist about situations like this. He looked up at Jo, a puzzled look on his face, and as he thought, he questioned whether or not she might know something he didn’t. “Yer wouldn’t happen to know of anywhere with a large collection of books would yer?” Well she had worked in a hunters bar and she had met and spoken to a lot of hunters, so maybe she’d heard something somewhere about a supernatural library or something in the like.
“I er…” He paused for a minute, he didn’t want to tell her about the deal, he wanted her to be protected from worry on that front, and he had to think of something quick. “Yer it’s complicated.” He finally replied waving his hand as if to brush off the comment and get back to a book, pretending to read its contents as if interested, but he wasn’t at all, he just wanted to avoid resorting back to the subject of how and why he could suddenly walk. “Cas has a tendancy of only showing up fer Dean.” He pointed out, having noticed it on the multiple occasions that Sam and Bobby had both called for him and got nothing, but Dean on the other hand he nearly always answered, it was if he had a strange connection with him, but Bobby tried not to think on it for long. “Well, I’d prep for the worst. But I aint letting yer outta my sight till we have some answers.” He muttered, tapping his fingers on the desk and taking a long drink from his flask. That flask was going to be with him till the day he died, and it was always going to be topped up with whiskey, which he was thankful for, simply because it could calm him down whenever he felt himself getting riled up about something, even if he had no right to. He looked at her apologetically, a frown forming on his face. “I’ve really got nothing. I’m sorry.” He wasn’t going to lie to her, the only reason they’d discovered the circumstances under which Dean had come back was because the angel presented itself to them, and that was on sheer luck that it did.“Well whatever the reason, it requires you specifically, and that confirms my earlier theory that it ain’t good.” He wanted to tell her it was all going to be alright, but that would have been a lie, he’d learnt that he couldn’t promise anyone anything anymore, not with the world in the crapper like this.
Two years was a long time. It probably didn’t seem it, except that when you were dead, it wasn’t like you were living there, seeing as things changed and new things came out. When Jo had died, vampires had been something that she’d come across maybe once in the time that she’d been hunting, and they were things that not everybody even believed in; they’d thought that Gordon Walker was crazy for his crusade against them. Now, she’d woken up in a world where vampires weren’t only absolutely everywhere, but they were out in public, they were allowed in restaurants and hotels and they were treated like they were freaking people. How was that a good change? They were monsters. People were becoming friends with them, they were letting them into their lives, into power, and Jo wished to God that she could knock some sense into them, because how dumb did you have to be, to think that something whose primary food source was human blood was actually just a puppy with fangs? Seriously, that didn’t happen; they were monsters, and if they weren’t feeding from people now, then they would lose control at some point and do it then—and most likely, it would be their friends that they were eating. It was ridiculous, honestly. Ridiculous and unsafe and Jo wished they could go back to the time when vampires were just things out of badly written horror movies. It was easier to do her job when the things she was hunting weren’t in the public eye, after all, when it wasn’t freaking illegal to do her job. It wasn’t going to stop her, of course; Jo was going to keep hunting, because she’d not come back from the dead just to sit on her ass doing nothing all day, and she was going to do what she could to kill as many vamps as possible, before they decided to kill all the citizens of New York and take over entirely.
That was the biggest change, honestly, the fact that vampires had decided it was a good idea to go public – and she bet that there were a lot of little nests who’d been perfectly happy staying low profile and picking off townsfolk and tourists one by one who now weren’t happy about the fact that they couldn’t even walk down the street without some dumb human squealing over them and wanting them to bite her. That was something Jo really didn’t get; people wanted to be bitten? Seriously, what the hell was wrong with them? Vampires were monsters, and once they had their fangs in your neck, how did you know that they were going to stop? They couldn’t be trusted, after all. Jo wouldn’t have trusted a single one of them as far as she could throw them. Everything else seemed...remarkably the same. Dean was still Dean, hunting was still hunting, serving people alcohol in a bar was exactly the same as it had been when she’d been younger and serving drinks before she was legally old enough to even drink it. Bobby was still the same too, it seemed, aside from the whole walking thing, and yeah, Sam had gone, her mom had gone, Los Angeles had gone, but for the most part, things were working exactly the same as they had always done, the hunts were merely focussed in one place, now. Jo had expected more to change, really, when the biggest differences seemed to be in what music was in (but she didn’t like modern music anyway), or what cell phones looked like, and really, Jo could absolutely deal with that. Settling into life again was far easier than dealing with the fact that she was actually alive, and she was still hoping that Bobby might have some answers about that. She frowned at the question, looking momentarily confused. “You’ve got more books than anybody I know,” she replied; it wasn’t like there was a whole library of supernatural books, or anything, just hunters with collections—and Bobby’s was known for being the best.
She frowned, looking over at him for a moment. “Sure it’s complicated, you’re walking. What happened?” She wasn’t going to just be brushed off like that; maybe it was old news for him, but as far as Jo was concerned, it was something new and great. One good thing about the world so far, added to all the vampire crap—it was something, at least, and Jo was glad about that. Someone like Bobby deserved to have something good happen, without a doubt. She nodded, because Jo was well aware of the fact that Castiel seemed less than eager to come and visit her; all she wanted was a couple of quick answers to whether he had been the one to bring her back to life, and if not, did he know who or what had, something that would take less than five minutes to answer, but nothing. It was frustrating, to say the least; Jo actually knew an angel, and she still couldn’t get answers out of him. She nodded, holding onto the book in her hand tightly, her knuckles almost white; all Jo wanted was to know why she was alive, and even Bobby, the fountain of knowledge, couldn’t help. There was no blame here, of course, but Jo still wished that she could know, because the not knowing was killing her. This wasn’t going to be the good kind of surprise, when it was sprung on her, without a doubt. “I’m safe in New York, Bobby. Dean’s there, we’re at the same motel.” She didn’t want to stay here, anyway; as much as she loved Bobby, there was fighting to be done, and the vampires seemed to have congregated in NYC. Jo needed to be there, she was sure of that. She couldn’t just sit around and wait for the other shoe to drop, could she? “Not your fault,” she shrugged, putting the book down and pacing the room a little. “But why me? What can I do? I don’t know what they’d wanna use me for.”
you gotta know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em KNOW WHEN TO WALK AWAY AND KNOW WHEN TO RUN you never count your money, when you’re sitting at the table THERE’LL BE TIME ENOUGH FOR COUNTING WHEN THE DEALIN’S DONE
When Bobby generally wanted to keep things to himself, he tended to do a damned good job of it, and the only reason the boys had found out about his little pawning session with Crowley, was because Crowley had essentially open up the bait and Bobby bit. Now he loved Jo just as much as he loved the boys, which is why he would want to protect her from the story behind his sudden use of legs, but if she didn’t find out from him, he was pretty sure she’d be devastated about it, and that would just make the situation a whole lot worse. How did you break something like “I sold my soul to save the world” to someone gently? They were going to take it wrong anyway and no matter how much Bobby would like to justify it, he just wouldn’t be able to, not if he couldn’t even justify it to himself. He remembered the time that Dean had sold his soul for Sam and how that had made him felt, he truly understood how they were feeling now, and how Jo would feel if he told her. No telling her would have to wait, he didn’t want to ruin a perfectly good thing just yet, considering she had just come back from wherever she’d been, and he was thankful that she was alive. He didn’t need to ruin that mood by saying ‘Well now you’re alive, you’re just in time to hear me do my round of goodbyes before I head on down to that crazy little place called hell.’, it just didn’t sit right with Bobby. If he could keep that thought out of her head for as long as possible, then he would try, he had to try, for her, and if the boys told her then he’d be pissed, but he couldn’t stop them even if he wanted to. Right now he just had to figure out the way to break it to her without upsetting her, but he knew that wouldn’t happen.
Bobby couldn’t help but show his disappointment that he was the only person she knew with an extensive book collection, simply because his collection wouldn’t suffice, not if his theory was right and that it had been an angel that had brought her back. Dean had had that burn mark, but knowing his luck, if an angel had done it, they would have healed it quickly too, and that meant cleaning up their tracks rather well. Bobby was going to have to really think about this one, secretly wishing he’d wrote his own damned book on the angels, and quizzed Cas as much as was possible before he decided to become as absent as was possible unless called on by Dean. He could suggest that Jo go talk to Dean about it, but that was about as useful as his books, simply because he felt like he’d be turning her from his door, just like Cas not answering the calls from them all. They all could sure as hell use an angel right now, and as much as Bobby wanted out of his deal, he’d convinced himself that not even Cas could help him with it. He looked at Jo, trying to feign a smile for her sake rather than his, before placing his hand on her shoulder. “We’re gonna be okay, we’ll figure this one out, just like we always do.” Right there and then he just wanted to hug her, but he didn’t know how she was feeling about the whole thing, and really he just wanted to get in as much time as he could with his family. He couldn’t remember how long he had left before he’d have to drag his ass down to Hell, he’d lost track of the days and he was quite glad that it wasn’t a constant foreboding thought in comparison to the world still ending and showing no signs of stopping on its kamikaze mission to the apocalypse.
“Well yer know, the apocalypse happened, and I got use of my legs again, there’s nothing to talk about.” Bobby quickly answered, trying to veer off topic as quickly as he could. He didn’t want to deal with telling her this, not right now, not when she needed answers for why she was back. Bobby thought of how much they all needed a bit of good news in their life and now was not the time to be worrying other people with the thought that they were going to lose someone in their life and soon. He looked at her, and noticed the book being clenched in her hand, and gently slipped it out of its grasp and placed it on his desk before turning to look at her again, offering out an arm to hug her with. Now was a better and more appropriate time for him to be offering out the shoulder, being completely unable to understand her frustration at the lack of answers that she was getting from anyone, but he did understand that she was frustrated and all she needed was someone to be there. “As long as yer safe, and Dean’s looking after yer, then it’s all good.” Bobby answered, his thoughts then turning as to why Dean hadn’t told him about her being alive, but he was sure he had his reasons, like being busy with cases and whatnot. In fact, he hadn’t seen Dean for a while and that thought worried him, considering their main problem was the apocalypse, but everyone dealt with news like that in their own way, some people hunted to take their mind off it, and others, like Bobby, stuck their noses in a book looking for some sort of get out clause for the apocalypse. “I know it ain’t my fault, but that don’t stop me being sorry.” He muttered, picking up another book from the table and flicking through it briefly. “Maybe it’s not a case of what yer can do right now, but maybe something they want yer for later.”
It wasn't fair – but unfortunately, that was the way the world worked. Life wasn't fair, and Jo wished beyond a doubt that they could just have something good, for once, without a whole load of questions about it. Funnily enough, she really wanted to know why someone had considered it a good idea to drag her out of Heaven, of all places; if she'd been in Hell, Jo was positive that she would have appreciated the relief, and while Dean didn't ever talk about what it was like, she knew that going to Hell couldn't be a good thing. Eternal torment, and all that. But Jo hadn't had torment, she hadn't been in pits of fire and torture and whatever else was down there – not that she had any desire to find out for sure herself. She had been in Heaven, and it had been peaceful and while she didn't remember any great details, Jo knew that she had been happy. She hadn't minded the fact that she was dead; she was a hunter, it happened, she was with her mom, and she didn't blame anybody for the fact that she wasn't alive anymore. There were worse ways to go out than fighting the freaking apocalypse, after all. She wasn't sad that she was alive again, she wasn't sad to be reunited with Dean and now Bobby, to be able to be another soldier in the fight that was now against vampires, rather than the devil, but she shouldn't have been here. She didn't think about it much, how different earth was to Heaven, but it was very different; no peace, no bliss, just harsh reality, and yeah, it was tough. She was still readjusting, she was still finding her feet again, and that would have been a hell of a lot easier if there had been some answers floating around. People didn't just drag people out of Heaven because they thought it would be fun, after all. Once you were there, you weren't supposed to leave.
Jo didn't plan to die any time soon, but she hadn't exactly planned on being here, either; she'd been torn to shreds by hellhounds – and remembered exactly what that felt like, and how terrified she had been – and that was supposed to be it. Going out with a bang to help Sam and Dean on their way. How did you come back two years later and just tell people that yeah, that had happened, but here you were, alive again? And they were so happy to see her, too; Jo was pleased to see them, of course she was, she was so happy to be reunited with some of her family, but...there were always going to be buts. That was life. But she wasn't at peace anymore. But her mom was still dead, and she missed her so, so much. But she had no idea who had done this, or why. But she didn't know if she was some kind of sleeper agent or something, if she was suddenly going to turn against her friends even when she had absolutely zero desire to do so. There were other things to focus on, and while Jo was never going to be glad that vampires had decided that it was a good idea to come out of the shadows that they belonged it, Jo was glad that it meant that she had a hunt around the corner wherever she ended up being. She didn't have to look for it at all, because there were always going to be vamps, and whatever they claimed, they were always going to be killing people. That was what they did, and Jo would stop them. It was as simple as that. And thinking about hunting was always a good way to not think about the questions that were upsetting her; she was still rebuilding her weapons collection, she still needed more ammo, to make more holy water, buy more salt to create shells for her shotgun—but she was getting there, and it was easier to think about that than anything else. It didn't mean that she didn't want her answers, though, because she did, undoubtedly.
She nodded at the hand on her shoulder, smiling faintly; Bobby was right, of course, they'd figure it out like always, but she wished that she could know now. It was the not knowing that was killing her, more than anything else. She shook her head, though; what the hell kinda answer was that? “People don't just start walking 'cause the apocalypse got averted,” she replied, and the more Bobby tried to deflect, the more Jo was sure that there was some answer to be found there. She'd just ask Dean, if necessary, and not leave until he told her; Jo could be just as stubborn as he could. She blinked as he removed the book from her grasp; she hadn't even realised that she was clenching it so tightly, but it was obvious that she was disappointed, that she still wanted answers, and she hugged Bobby tightly when it was offered. He was the only parental figure she had left, now. “My mom's dead,” she whispered against his shoulder, and it wasn't a surprise for him, it had happened two years ago, but for Jo, those two years didn't exist, and it had been no time at all. She felt like such a child for thinking it, when she was a grown woman, a good hunter, but she wanted her mom. Even when they'd been fighting, Jo had always known that she'd be there for her, and now she wasn't. She wanted her back. Saying it aloud made it harder, but it also felt something like acceptance. Jo just would have done anything to see her again. She nodded, smiling faintly as she moved away, not commenting on the fact that she was perfectly capable of looking after herself. “He's been great.” He'd helped a lot with her adjusting; Jo was definitely grateful that he had stumbled across her completely by accident. “Why would they bring me back now, then?”
you gotta know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em KNOW WHEN TO WALK AWAY AND KNOW WHEN TO RUN you never count your money, when you’re sitting at the table THERE’LL BE TIME ENOUGH FOR COUNTING WHEN THE DEALIN’S DONE
Not having answers was one of the things in the world that Bobby hated the most considering how much he had read in his lifetimes, and if knowledge was power he would be great, but he would always be second rate, no matter how hard he tried. He would never know enough about demons and angels and how they worked, he would only ever know how to kill the former, and that they were friends with a creature of the latter. It was never good enough, and he was hoping that Castiel would have answers for them whenever he finally decided to pick up that damned call from them all. Bobby had been calling, Dean had been calling, hell, even Sam may have been calling but they were just ringing out and getting nothing. Whatever was happening in Heaven was distracting him and that meant he wasn’t going to be of any help to them, not until the situation in Heaven got better, or worse. He could break his brain trying to think of things and reasons as to why Jo was back, but he couldn’t determine anything, not based on Jo alone, however, if there were more people being brought back, then that might help Bobby work out the who, which could then lead him to the why. If it was who he thought it was, and it was the angels, then the reason couldn’t have been all that bad, but then again, they had managed to aggravate some of the angels in Heaven with their “stop the apocalypse” mission, and if considering they’d managed to put Michael in the cage with Lucifer, he could only imagine that some of them would still be bitter about that. Bitterness wasn’t exactly an angelic trait, but then again, the angels hadn’t exactly cracked up to everything the bible had made them out to be, and even Castiel pointed out that people had obviously been reading the bible wrong when Dean questioned him. Angels were soldiers, but that didn’t mean they didn’t harbour feelings like everyone else.
Whatever it was, Bobby had no intention of letting Jo stay involved in the plan, and was going to drag her out of it as soon as possible, but that didn’t mean he was going to let her die a second time either. No she was going to outlive him, he was going to make sure of it, and even if her life wasn’t exactly an apple pie lie, she was going to be alive, and with friends, hell, she could even call them family, and Bobby would stake his life on it. He was going to get her answers as well while he was at it; he knew if it had been him that was brought back without reason, he’d be pissed and would want answers as quickly as possible before he got any angrier. He needed Cas to shift his backside down here so that he could interrogate him, and considering Bobby generally just got to the point, it wouldn’t take him very long even if he wanted him to appear. He could ask the questions and get the answers without wasting too much of Castiel’s time but apparently that didn’t matter right now, the angels problems were more important to Castiel by the looks of things. He couldn’t blame him, considering, the angels were his brothers and sisters, and as far as Bobby was aware they were tearing each other apart up there, like some war, but at the same time you shouldn’t forget your friends in the time of war, which to Bobby, was exactly what Castiel was doing. Jo needed him down here, Bobby needed him down here; one to help Jo find out why she was back and two to spring Bobby out of this deal with Crowley that was slowly niggling away at Bobby’s temper, aggravating him even more with every passing minute that that slimy crossroads prick had his dirty little hands on his soul.
“You’d be surprised what an apocalypse can do.” Bobby pointed out, considering he was walking and she was well, she was alive, and even though hers wasn’t a deal through a demon, it could very well have been a deal that brought her here, but who’d dealt for her? Dean? Sam? No, they would have done it a lot sooner had it been the case, there was too much mystery surrounding the whole situation and that was what bugged Bobby the most. Jo would probably have better luck asking Dean about Bobby’s predicament, considering, Bobby didn’t particularly feel like talking about it, not when he knew what she’d been through, and he only wanted to protect her from the truth, like a father would. He held her gently in his arms as she hugged him tightly when he’d offered it, and he knew that she must have been feeling really hurt right now, and he didn’t blame her, not after everything she’d been through. She’d died, and come back, but only, her mum seemingly hadn’t, or at least, they didn’t know about it if she had. “I know, I’m sorry. Yer shouldn’t have had to deal with everything that we put on you. It was the boys and my job, not yer’s and yer mothers, and I’m sorry.” He was truly and deeply sorry, and even though it wasn’t directly his fault, it was indirectly his fault and he bore the guilt just like Dean and Sam did. He looked at her and gave her a faint smile, as if for some reason it would make everything okay, but he knew that even smiles and a friendly hug couldn’t change the fact she was hurting inside. ”Good.” He grumbled under his voice when she’d said that Dean had been great to her, but his mind wandered off into thought. He’d never stopped hurting over his wife, and there wasn’t a day that went buy that he didn’t regret killing her, especially with what he knew now. “My theory is, there’s a new worldwide event gonna happen, and they’re taking all the help they can get. We’ve gotta find out what though first.”
Jo knew that there were always going to be things that she didn't understand in the world. That was just a fact, really, and there was nothing she could do to change that; no matter how many books she read, she'd always miss something. It was inevitable, wasn't it? There was so much information out there, so many creatures that she had never even heard of, and Jo knew that she couldn't know everything. She didn't expect to, or even want to; she was pretty sure that her head would explode, if that happened. Nobody's brain was made to know every little thing that there was in the universe, and people just wouldn't be able to remember that, she was sure. Something else would be forgotten instead, and sure, she knew a fair amount, but there were always times when she was halfway through reading a passage before she even realised that she'd actually read it before, and even though, she didn't magically remember everything; it merely seemed vaguely familiar. They were always going to need books, because of that, always going to need people who were willing to sit around for hours going through things, and sure, Jo liked being out on the hunt, she liked being the one actually doing the fighting, but it didn't change the fact that she was okay researching too. She could sit at a table with a pile of books and work her way through them, and sure, sometimes it got tedious, she needed to get up and walk around, or fiddle with her knife, or something like that, but ultimately, it was something that she kind of enjoyed doing. Not the same way that she enjoyed hunting, not even slightly, but it wasn't the worst thing in the world – and after all, she had a hell of a lot of practice at it, didn't she? How many years had she spent becoming the person who put together the best files ever, because she wasn't allowed to actually go out and fight?
Jo was used to not having answers, she was used to things being difficult; it was frustrating, sure, but generally, it didn't bother her on a personal level. Of course she wanted to know what was going on, especially if it was to do with the apocalypse, but she had lost count of how long they had spent trying to find somewhat reliable information on Lucifer, for example, to come up with zilch. Apparently the information they had gotten had been unreliable, anyway, since Dean had told her that using the colt on Lucifer hadn't done anything at all – and yeah, that hurt a little, since she had died to give him and Sam the chance to use it, but she didn't blame Dean for it. They'd been acting on information they had thought was right, and hey, it was the freaking apocalypse. They had all gone into it being pretty sure that they weren't going to make it through; there was no blame in Jo's eyes for her death, none whatsoever. She was a hunter, she didn't need protecting from that, and hunters died young. She'd grown up around them, she knew that. She knew that it was unusual to get older guys in the bar, that almost every week, there was news of some regular's death and they'd all drink to him. She hadn't needed protecting; come on, she'd have found a way to do it anyway, if they'd tried to stop her, because that was what Jo did. It wouldn't have been the first time that she'd snuck off to hunt, after all. And hey, here she was, back again. Nobody really died, did they? And of all the questions that they didn't have answers to, it was that which bugged Jo, more than anything else. She just wanted to know who had done this, and why. Why had she been dragged from eternal peace, huh? That wasn't something that was just done by accident. Someone had to intentionally search for her in Heaven – which pointed to an angel, because they could get there without any issue. But why? She'd been at peace; why would they change that?
But they had, clearly, and Jo wasn't going to spend time dwelling over her lost Heaven (well, maybe a little, but she wasn't going to complain about it all the time, or anything), but instead get stuck right back into hunting, because with the state that the world was in at the moment, they really needed more hunters. The more people that were out there killing vampires, the better, really, because they seemed to be everywhere and Jo didn't think for even a second that that was a good thing. At least when they'd been in the shadows, it hadn't seemed like they'd been a major problem; they'd been one of the monsters she'd known about, sure, but the biggest problem had been demons. Now they seemed to be being quieter – which was never a good thing, when it came down to it, because who knew what they were planning, bastard things. “I guess so,” she replied, and of course Jo wanted the story, because there was always going to be more to a story than that, but she guessed she would have to ask Dean about it, since Bobby seemed unwilling to talk about him – and she wasn't going to make him mad at her by pushing it, not now, when she needed him. He was the only parental figure she had left in her life; she really needed him, now that her mom was gone. She shook her head, though, and God, she missed her mom so much, she would have done anything to see her again, because she was only now able to go through grief, given that she'd been dead before and all, but it wasn't anybody's fault. Her mom had chosen to die, chosen to help them out by doing that, so that she could stay with Jo. As much as she hated to admit it, not dying alone had made those last few seconds easier. She pulled back, shaking her head again. “It was our job too,” she said, and she sounded firm on this point. “You think either of us would've just let you fight the apocalypse without us? No way, Bobby. We all doubted we were gonna come back from it, and you couldn't've stopped us.” None of them could; both she and her mom had been determined to help, and you couldn't stop a Harvelle once they were that set on something. “You've got nothing to be sorry for.” Yeah, her dying sucked, her mom's dying sucked, but it wasn't Bobby's fault any more than it was Dean's. It was just one of those things, casualties of war and all that. She shook her head; that wasn't something she wanted to consider. “I'm not gonna help them end the world, or something,” she said; not out of free will, anyway. Of course, there was no guarantee that she had that. “What if they brought me back to be...a sleeper agent, or something? To get close to all of you again and then pull my strings and make me do things I don't wanna do?”