Crowley nudged his companion with his elbow. “Dean. Dean-o. We need to talk.”
Dean Winchester’s gaze was directed to their right. He was grinning, nodding to the beat of the low music, and enjoying the show the young women at the pool table were putting on.
“I told you not to call me Dean-o.” He nudged Crowley right back. “That one right there. That’ll be warming my bed tonight.”
Letting out a long-suffering sigh, Crowley stared into the amber liquid in his rock glass. “That what?” he inquired with exaggerated boredom before taking a furtive glance at Dean.
Though it had been loads of laughs, after spending weeks with the Winchester-gone-bad, he knew to check the color of the former hunter’s eyes before speaking too much of his mind.
Mischievous hazel twinkled back at him.
The King of Hell took a sip, smacked his lips, and sat the glass gently on the varnished wood before him. “So those boudoir eyes aren’t for me?” With a disappointed pout, he shook his head and scanned the dim recesses of the room. “Pray tell, which one this time?”
“The blonde with the jean jacket.”
“Even I know that is a woman, and she is another blonde.”
“Yeah? So?” Dean drained the long-neck and slammed it down.
The fact the bottle didn’t shatter when it hit the bar caused Crowley to raise a disapproving eyebrow.
Dean waved his hand in the air. “Hey, barkeep—another round for me and my pal here.” He waggled a finger between himself and Crowley. “The guy’s only a few years older than me. You’d think he’d move a little faster.” He didn’t bother lowering his voice.
“I like ‘em all,” Dean continued, getting louder and slapping the bar. “Blondes, brunettes, red heads. Tall ones, short ones. Any are good for a night of fun.”
“Sorry, mate, I believe anti-gentlemen prefer blondes.” Crowley took another swig, emptying the glass. “Of the thirty-seven you’ve bedded, a vast majority have not been of the dark-haired persuasion.” He dropped a crisp one-hundred-dollar bill on the bar.
“Listen, Fair-gus,” Dean sneered. “What I take to bed is none of your damn business.”
“Ahh, Dean-o. Treat them with a bit of common courtesy and you might have them for more than a single tryst.”
“Why would I want one for more than a night? I get what I want. And I told you not to call me Dean-o.”
“Forgive my faux pas, Mr. Winchester.” Crowley’s hand spread across his chest, and he gave a short bow. “I beg to differ. You seem to be in search of.” He nodded toward the young blonde his compatriot had shown an interest in. “The little lovely by the billiard table bears a striking resemblance to someone we both used to know, love, and admire greatly.” Crowley eased off the padded stool and shrugged on his overcoat, adjusting the collar and smoothing the lapels. “A blonde, as a matter of fact.”
He turned his back on Dean’s confusion and started toward the door at a sharp clip, but halted and murmured over his shoulder. “A former hunter. Or more accurately, a hunter’s apprentice.” He grasped the worn brass door handle and pulled. “So young, so alive—barely out of nappies and pigtails—she’d have made an adequate adversary … in time.”
Fresh beer paused halfway to his mouth, Dean scowled. “What the hell are you talkin’ about?”
“Had the tyke lived, of course.” Sorrow overtook Crowley’s demeanor and his gaze dropped to the floor. “A pity really. She had some potential … coming from a family of hunters like yourself.” His head snapped up and he stepped through the door way. “I seem to recall the golden-haired lass’s name was …” One finger rose and tapped at his bottom lip. “Jo perhaps?”
The brown glass missile streaking toward Crowley’s malicious smirk exploded against the steel door.
The bastard had pulled his demon disapparating act.
With a groan, Dean’s head dropped into his hands. He raked his fingers roughly through his hair. Like too many hunters to count, Jo Harvelle—one of the bravest women he had ever known—had died too soon, too young … and for the piece of shit named Dean Winchester.
The bartender thumped the edge of the bar with a baseball bat. “What the hell’s your problem, buddy?”
The bat clattered to the floor and the man stumbled backwards, floundering against the cash register on the rear counter. Staring into inky black of Dean’s eyes, he experienced the bottomless depths of the abyss and his very soul shuddered in revulsion.
There was a glinting flash of light and Dean was across the bar, an eight-inch blade pressing into the bartender’s throat.
A smile cold enough to induce frostbite spread across Dean’s face. “No problem here, buddy. Hey, you probably ought to clean that up over there. That broken glass could be dangerous. Somebody could slip on that wet floor. You wouldn’t want a law suit.” He winked at the man’s terrified face and drew the knife away from his neck. “I’m gonna raise a little hell with, uh …” Glancing toward the alcove and the girls by the pool tables, his lips formed into a rigid line. Dismissing them, he looked to the left. “That brunette at that table over there. She just doesn’t know it yet.”
Eyes flicking back to their usual hazel, Dean eased back over the bar, patted the bartender’s chest, and dropped a fifty. He gave the gleaming wood a couple of sharp raps and pointed at the petrified man. “You have yourself a good night. I’m going to.”
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“Peace of Mind” by Boston from the album Boston
BetterinTexas / Jason
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