Rating: PG - Gen - Outside POV
Disclaimers: SPN & characters are owned by their various creators.
Summary: Outside POV - A young hitch hiker gets picked up by an old black car on a cold rainy night.
It was the only car he'd seen in the past three hours and he knew by the sight of its heavy duty wide set SUV headlights that there was no way it was going to slow down. He watched it get closer with some kind of stupid hope anyway.
Maybe it wasn't some little cozy family that wouldn't dare think of such a thing with a toddler in the car. There was the small off chance it wasn't a woman all alone. Chicks would rather run over someone they saw lurking out here in the middle of the night rather then unlock the doors and let them in.
It roared by, splattering him with a spray of the water that had collected on the roadside.
He slumped down onto his small duffel that was so soaked with rainwater it felt like it weighed an extra fifty pounds. There wasn't much in it. A few changes of clothes. A plastic soda bottle he'd been refilling with water whenever he hit a gas station or a fast food joint. A banged up UNICEF can he had stolen last week but then discovered that it aided in hand outs if he worked the sidewalk lunch crowds with it.
The trouble with hand outs is that you needed someone else around to ask for one.
Hunched down into his drenched coat, he pulled the sopping wet collar up to at least keep the steady frigid drizzle off the back of his neck. October was a shitty time to be out in the weather that was for sure. Shuddering, he looked back up and down the quiet black stretch of the road, his teeth chattering uncontrollably.
He wasn't sure but he thought today might be his birthday.
A whole entire fifteen years old. If it wasn't today it was soon. Maybe it had already even passed.
The glint of approaching headlights sparkled through the rain over the horizon.
Arms wrapped around himself, he watched the light glow and grow steadily as the car came closer. It would pass by just like the others did. He thought maybe all the people warm and dry in their rides hadn't ignored him at all. He was just one other dark sodden still shape along the side of the state route that didn't warrant another glance. Like the black trees that flashed by in their high beams, he wasn't worthy of a second thought.
Not even bothering to stand up, he waited for the passage of the vehicle to breeze by and continue its way into the night.
It did just that.
Tires hissing and on the verge of hydroplaning, it rumbled by going a lot faster than it ought to have been. The cold wind of its passing made him shut his eyes against the spray off the asphalt. The skin under his eyes and cheeks suddenly felt hot and he wiped a hand briskly under his nose. His breath fogged in the sharp near winter air as he heard himself hold back some stupid self serving lame baby ass sob like he was some loser little--
A sudden noise startled him into looking up.
There was a screech of brakes and the headlights swinging as the thing drifted left and right on the wet road surface. The car had skidded to a halt about a dozen yards away.
He watched it uncertainly.
The deep red glow of its taillights brightened and dimmed several times before he heard the car hitch back into gear. The engine slammed back into a roar and with a sharp squeak of the tires it suddenly started coming back in reverse almost as fast as it had been traveling in drive.
He stumbled to his feet trying to get away from the road side so he wouldn't get backed over.
The car wobbled to a loud stop right in front of him. The thing was like some kind of land boat. Its idling engine kind of sounded like one too in all the rain.
The driver's window came down.
It was some guy. He greeted him like they were just about anywhere but here. A pleasant hello at a traffic light and maybe some quick directions to the local Dairy Queen.
"You gonna sit out there all night or get in?"
He did a quick run of his small check list of warnings through his head. The guy wasn't that old so he probably wasn't some kind of freak. But he wasn't real young either so he might still have some weird ideas and maybe want some money. From the look of the car, it didn't seem like this was one of those creepy rich dudes that he had learned would only stop for a skinny kid all alone like him for one thing. But it was still a kind of weird old car that looked like it should be collecting dust in some old garage--
The car was put back in gear and the window was going back up.
He scrambled to his feet and quickly grabbed his bag. He got to the backside door and heard the lock click up. With a deep breath he hauled it open, heavy and with a loud creak, and shoved himself inside.
He hadn't thought much about his dripping clothes and what it would do anyone's car seats. But right now with feel of the hot air coming from the front seat he couldn't care less if he completely ruined them. About to say some kind of thank you and maybe try to get a feel about how far this ride might take him, the words died on his lips...
The guy wasn't alone. There some other dude in the passenger seat. They were both turned around and looking at him carefully. He glanced down at the door handle. He would have never gotten in if he had known there were two of them.
"We're headed for Duluth."
His hand lingered on the door. That was exactly where he wanted to go. One more look back out onto that dark dismal cold hell hole of the road's shoulder made up his mind for him.
"Cool." Was all he said in return.
The other guy, a big one, smiled at him and turned back around in his seat as the car started to roll again. The doors didn't have automatic locks and as far as he could tell, it still had those old crappy manual roll down windows too. He made a face at the ancient cassette player he spotted on the dash.
What a piece of junk.
The dude behind the wheel was studying him in the rear view. "You got a name?"
Not a name he was going to give these guys.
He pushed the wet flop of his bangs out of his eyes and tried to rub some warmth back into his arms. "What is?"
"My name's Pete too."
The big guy next to him laughed softly.
Unsure of what to make of that he pulled his bag closer to his side. It had a few more things in it besides soggy clothes and dented plastic. He slid his hand inside until he found the familiar cold shape that fit so nicely in his hand.
He eased his fingers around it, a calm settling in his mind with the comfort of its presence. These guys would probably have at least some cash on them. And if not, there had to be something in this old junker worth selling or pawning. He probably wouldn't even need to use the gun, just flash it.
Something wrapped in white paper fell in his lap.
"Want it?" The dude in the passenger seat asked. "I'm not gonna finish it."
It was an entire sandwich.
His stomach pulled painfully almost sideways at the sight of food. Dry, clean, fresh food. Murmuring a thanks around large bites, it was gone before he could even start tasting it. A lukewarm but sweetly and perfectly sugar filled bottle of coke was handed to him and he gulped that down too.
Filled up for the first time in days, he sat back drowsy. Put a little bit at ease, he took a better look around. The wide back seat was cluttered with unfolded maps and papers. There was a box over flowing with tapes for that player up front. Laying on the vinyl beside him he saw what he thought looked like a necklace. Stringing his fingers through it and about to slip it into his pocket, he realized his mistake.
Holding it up as it slowly swung with the motion of the car, he saw it was a rosary with a small ivory cross. With a wary look back to the silent men sitting in front of him, he carefully put it back where he had found it.
He briefly poked under the piles of road atlases and found nothing more interesting than a bright pink book of matches that had the name of some girl written on the inside with a phone number. Feeling his exhaustion creep and seep in, the end of his inspection fell on a leather jacket that had been tossed on the floor. With a cautious glance up at the front seat, he snagged it and pulled it up over him like a blanket. It smelled heavy and warm, vague with gasoline and motor oil.
He closed his eyes.
The old junker's annoying engine almost seemed a little soothing now that he'd been listening to it for a while. Its rumble had blurred into some pleasant white noise that seemed to gently bounce him as the shocks rode over the steady imperfections of the road.
Maybe he could sleep for just a little while.
Just until he got to the next town.
He woke up to strong daylight shining down into his eyes.
With a stretch and sleepy look around he found himself alone in the old crusty car that had picked him up the night before. He stretched again wondering how he had managed to sleep for so long and so soundly. It was parked along the curb in what should have been Duluth. Blinking around he knew it wasn't the large city he had been hoping to see.
No sign of those guys.
He looked at the nearby diner that sat at the corner and wondered if maybe that was where they had headed.
Grateful for a moment that he could just slip away without any forced gratitude complete with any thank yous, he quickly gathered his meager belongings. Or even worse, he didn't want to find out if they maybe expected him to pay for that sandwich. He started to pull his stiff body out of the car but then hesitated for a moment. His gaze fell towards the temptation of the unattended glove compartment and the warm leather jacket that been draped over him throughout the night...
Leaving both be, he swung the door shut, making sure it was locked behind him.
Moving down the street, he shouldered his duffel and did what he did best. He took off.
The weather was going to turn again. He could feel it. But the night in the toasty interior of that car with no rain coming down on his head had almost completely dried his clothes. His bag was another story but as long as he wasn't shivering for now that was good enough for him. Turning the corner he looked around again with a scowl on his face.
This was definitely not Duluth. This looked like the backwater hole that he had been trying to get away from in the first place. His belly growled just as he spotted a water fountain at the edge of a small park.
Breakfast was served.
He opened his bag to dig out the water bottle he carried around. He froze. Frantic, he dug around the confines of the damp bag for several more moments.
His gun was gone.
His hand fell onto something strange that he hadn't put there.
Instead of his pistol, he pulled out a small wad of paper. Looking around suspiciously before he unrolled it, he quickly counted almost one hundred dollars in assorted fives and tens. His mouth hanging open, he almost missed the small scrap that fell out from the pile.
He knelt down to pick it up where it had fluttered down onto the sidewalk. It had nothing but an address on it.
And a name.
Pastor James Murphy
Numbly sitting down on a nearby bench he stared at the cash in his hands. He tipped his head back and took a deep breath, his gaze falling quite by accident on the street sign that sat just above him.
Blinking at it, he looked back down at the scribbled address below the name.
He didn't really have anything a whole lot better to do while he was stuck here.
Maybe he'd stop by.