Author: Das Mervin and Mrs. Hyde
Betas: gehayi and kermit_thefrog
Rating: R for language, themes, violence, and sexual innuendo
Word Count: 4,550
Summary: After two years on her own, and two more as a hunter with Sam and Dean Winchester, Leah thought she’d escaped her old life at La Push. But when she’s called home to attend Jacob and Renesmee’s wedding, she brings a little company, and the stage is set for her old and new lives to collide.
Author’s Note: Chapter title and soundtrack is from ZZ Top this time, “Sharp Dressed Man.” Enjoy.
Spoilers: Spoilers for Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, Breaking Dawn, and all six seasons of “Supernatural.”
Disclaimer: “Supernatural” is the property of Kripke Enterprises and Warner Bros. Television. The Twilight Saga is the property of Stephenie Meyer and Little, Brown and Co. No copyright infringement is intended, and no profit is being made from this work.
CHAPTER 2 – SHARP DRESSED MAN
Leah carefully released the curling iron from the little tendril of hair hanging by her left ear, and then stood back to scrutinize the final result with a critical eye. She smiled in pleasure at the image looking back out of the mirror.
And all without an appointment at the hairdresser’s.
Moving carefully so as not to disturb her flawlessly-smooth French twist, she unplugged the iron and reached for the hairspray, shellacking her hair into motionless perfection. She was bound and determined that, just as the brat decreed, everything about her appearance would be perfect. She wasn’t going to let them get to her. They didn’t matter—because today, there would actually be people in her corner.
The boys hadn’t been too keen on the idea—not with her first wild plan, anyway (and really, she didn’t blame them). Well, Dean had been intrigued with the general idea of crashing a wedding, at the very least. But they were not particularly interested in crashing the wedding of a werewolf.
“No, guys,” Leah had been quick to reassure them. “You’ve seen me: we’re not like the ones you’ve hunted. We don’t hurt people. We’re not even really werewolves—we’re some kind of shape-shifter, is all. We can still think and everything in animal form, and we don’t eat human flesh—they won’t hurt you.”
“Well, maybe they won’t hurt us if we just show up, but what if we start screwing around?” Sam had asked pointedly. “We’ve seen you in action, Leah; you’re faster and stronger than most things we’ve seen before. And that’s in your human form—when you wolf out on us, you’re even tougher. I don’t like the idea of stirring up a whole pack of them.”
“I’ll be there to look out for you,” she said insistently, aware that a whine was creeping into her voice but unable to stop it. “You don’t understand, guys—I can’t do anything to piss them off. I literally can’t. My alpha’s got me in a mental headlock and can make me do whatever he says. I need you guys to do it for me.”
They didn’t look convinced. In retrospect, her attempt to placate them by saying that, “Seriously—they’ll all be on their best behavior in front of the vampires,” probably wasn’t the best way to go.
“Vampires? You want us to walk into a nest of werewolves and vampires?” Dean demanded incredulously.
She backpedaled furiously, but by then it was too late. “No—they’re not like those fangs we’ve hunted before. These are something else. They’re not so animalistic—I don’t think, anyway—and they’re all so pretentious that they’ll all be on good behavior too just to show each other up—and I know the brat won’t let anyone mess up her wedding by eating somebody—”
She’d stopped then. She’d known that the plan was a bad one, and that they were right. “No,” she conceded heavily. “You’re right. I just—I really don’t want to go back there—‘cause I really hate those people. I just wish I could get them—just once—to make up for how they treated me for years…but I can’t ask you to do that.” She turned away, gripping her elbows. “I can’t even ask you to go—you’re right about that, too. They’re a bunch of douchebags at best, and at worst—well, as I understand it, there will be quite a few vampires there who don’t abstain from eating people the way the bride’s family does.”
She had sighed unhappily, and it had been quiet for a moment before Dean had spoken. “Well—look. If you’re really sure that they’re gonna be playing nice for the little wedding…we can still go. We’ll just think of it as—as monster reconnaissance,” he suggested. “I mean, these people-eating things? Those are clearly monsters, and from what you’ve said, they’re like nothing we’ve seen before, so…” He shrugged. “We’ll just go scope things out and take it as a chance to see how to kill ‘em.”
Leah had only given a humorless laugh. “That’s just it—you can’t. They’re a bunch of arrogant assholes, but some part of it is understandable, at least. The only thing I’ve ever seen that can kill one of them is either another vampire or a wolf like me.” She shook her head. “It’d be walking into a deathtrap—and there’s only one of me. I don’t think I could defend you both if someone took it into their heads to try something.”
She honestly hadn’t been trying to throw down a gauntlet—but of course, that’s how they took it. “Leah,” Sam had said in a deliberately patronizing voice. “We’ve faced down all the armies of both Hell and Heaven—I think we can handle a few jerkass mutant vampires with delusions of grandeur.”
“And anyway—walking into deathtraps is one of our specialties,” Dean added cheekily.
“I don’t know, guys,” Leah had protested, only later reflecting on the oddity of them so rapidly switching positions in this argument. “If anything happened to you because you came along just to protect my ‘delicate sensibilities’—it’s just not worth it.”
Dean was looking at her with a steady, slightly smug expression by this point; when she was finished, he raised his eyebrows. “Well—okay. So, you say that there is only one of you to look out for two of us. I get that. But what about if we took along a little extra life insurance, you know, someone else who could keep an eye out for us? Say, someone who I’d be willing to bet money could kill one of these things—and maybe even all of ‘em at once.”
He looked over at Sam, bouncing his brows with a self-satisfied smile, and they turned together back to Leah.
She honestly couldn’t believe she’d never thought of it before. She supposed she’d grown so used to hearing both her pack and the vampires themselves talk about how great and invincible they were that some part of her had just started believing it.
Well. Even if they really were that great, between her own adventures and hearing about the ones the Winchesters had had, she now knew that there was always something greater.
An involuntary smile crawled across her face as she rummaged through her makeup bag. She couldn’t wait to see how those sparkling jerkwads fared against an angel.
Castiel had been a little confused by the situation, but really, that was to be expected. The wedding, Leah’s dysfunctional relationships, and the idea that they were deliberately going into a nest of monsters but were not going to kill them—that made no sense to him. However, the fact that it was a nest of supercharged monsters and that they all—Leah included—very well might need some heavy-weight protection was clear enough. He’d agreed to come after not too much talk. Leah had been betting he would—it was more than obvious that he preferred to join them on their little adventures rather than sitting around playing his harp or whatever he did when he was upstairs. They’d arranged to meet up in Seattle in two weeks, as soon as they’d cleared out the den of skinwalkers they’d flushed out in the Georgia woods.
Leah leaned forward to apply her eyeliner; it was morning, but with the outfit she had, a darker look would work better. Not to mention that the idiot hellspawn had them all in evening dress at her morning wedding, but Leah doubted she’d know any better either way.
Once the job down in Dalton was finished, they’d taken off. The drive across the entire US had been long and tedious, even with all the stops to check out things like the World’s Largest Ketchup Bottle outside of St. Louis. Leah had known better than to suggest that they just get Cas to zap them up there—there was not a chance in hell Dean would leave his car behind. She’d ridden around with the boys a few times when she’d met up with them on jobs, but never on a trip this long before. They should be glad she hadn’t been the one driving—just a few hours of their seemingly endless bickering and she’d have turned the car around and taken them straight home in no time at all.
Leah had broken up their little spats from time to time with information about just what they were going to be walking into. She’d told them bits about the sorts of vampires and werewolves she was familiar with before, but then had been the first time she’d given them a complete run-down of what they were, how they worked, and all the ways they were different from the low-end fangs that she’d taken up hunting once she’d discovered them.
But that didn’t take too long in the end, and they’d had a good three days of driving to fill with conversation. It was inevitable that they’d started asking other things—about who these people were, what they were like, and why she so badly didn’t want to go back.
She didn’t like to talk about it. Since joining their little team, she’d only ever spoken to Cas about it before, and then only briefly; all she’d ever really told the brothers was that she’d left because she disagreed with the others about her responsibility as a defender of humanity. Now, though, she’d reluctantly given them the general gist that, for whatever reason, she’d been singled out as the pack pariah and was treated accordingly.
She’d managed to deflect their interest from their behavior towards her by telling them about what they should expect at the wedding.
“Ten? Are you shitting me?”
“Nope,” she’d said, taking a certain amount of sadistic glee in Dean’s appalled reaction to that tidbit of information. “Hey—consider yourselves lucky—the only reason the bride is that old is because she wanted to wait. If the groom had his way, they’d have been married when she was seven.”
“That isn’t even legal—never mind the fact that it’s just wrong,” Sam had said firmly; Dean was apparently still locked up.
Leah shrugged, leaning over the back of the front seats. “Hey—she looks legal, and she apparently wants it, so it’s gonna happen. Believe me—in this family, whatever Baby wants, Baby gets. That’s just the way it is.”
“It’s sick, is what it is—what the hell, man?” Dean finally managed.
She snorted. “Well, the bride aged faster than your average human—no idea why, given that she’s half-vampire. I’d have thought she’d age slower. She was pretty much full-grown by the time she was seven—and no one seemed to question her mental maturity, just because she could read early and stuff.” She shrugged and blew a breath out through her nose before she added, “But, either way, it doesn’t really matter. Jacob—that’s my pack leader, by the way—had decided he was gonna marry her the day she was born.”
It always cracked her up when they accidentally spoke in unison. “You heard me,” she said; she hadn’t thought about it in so long that she’d actually managed to suppress her own revulsion to the whole situation, but seeing it through the eyes of her new friends was reawakening the horror.
“Jesus—I thought if we went to this vampire-werewolf confab, we’d get Kate Beckinsale in leather—not Humbert and Delores!”
Leah chuckled humorlessly. “It’s called ‘imprinting.’ Apparently after we change, the males of my kind of wolves develop this fixation on someone as their ‘perfect mate’ or something. That’s what happened to me, you know—only from the other end,” she found herself saying. “I was engaged a guy in my tribe, but when he turned wolf, he decided he liked my cousin better and dropped me like a hot potato.”
The words were bitter, and she hadn’t meant to say them; she turned to look out the window when she saw the disbelieving sympathy in Sam’s face when he glanced back at her and the shocked pity in Dean’s eyes in the rearview mirror. “She turned him down, though,” she said to the window with false lightness, “at least until he tore her face off for it. Now they’re married and working on their sixth kid, last I heard.”
There was a long, tense silence. “And I thought our family was screwed up,” Sam said at last.
Leah had only snorted, and then changed the subject to the vampires. Having met angels and demons (and herself, for that matter), the boys had no trouble accepting their supercharged abilities—although they definitely didn’t like the idea of all those extra things so many of them could do.
“I really don’t think they’re gonna screw with you like that,” Leah told them. “These vampires—they’re not what you’re used to. They’re not living on the outskirts, foraging for food. They’re pretty much entrenched where they are, living the good life right in amongst the humans.” She scowled down at the upholstery. “What they really are is a bunch of self-righteous pricks—there’s no way to sugarcoat that. They aren’t going to eat you, but I can promise you that they’ll treat you like crap. They have egos on ‘em the size of the Brooklyn Bridge and their heads so far up their own asses that they don’t even consider humans people, far as I can tell. They’ve certainly made it more than clear that they consider me and my kind nothing but animals.”
“Wait—but your pack leader is marrying one of them?”
“Ridiculous, isn’t it?” she agreed. She shook her head. “I’ve given up trying to understand any of them—and frankly, I don’t want to. They can just live out their smug, pompous lives doing nothing but spending money and looking down on everyone else—I want no part of it. Me? I help people—and I don’t care what they think of me.”
She just kept telling herself that. Through their third day of travel, she found that she had less to say and just ended up borrowing Sam’s iPod to drown out the squabbling from the front. She’d curled up on the back seat to watch the scenery flash by until they had finally arrived in Seattle, taking out a motel room on the west side of the city—the one they were in now.
Leah flicked her mascara brush over her lashes and then examined her handiwork. She had very nice eyelashes, she decided, turning her head from side to side to gauge the effect. She was going light on the makeup today—she wasn’t about to show up with the stuff troweled on like her “makeup appointment” with the spawn and her coterie no doubt would have left her—they all seemed to have this sick attitude that if you weren’t a vampire, then obviously the only way you could come close to their perfection was through artificial means. Well, she may not be a sparkling blow-up doll, she thought with no little ferocity, but she wasn’t chopped liver, either. With her hair up, her eyes defined, and some shimmer on her lips, she looked pretty damn good. And her outfit was just going to top things off.
They’d hit Seattle two days before the wedding—plenty long enough to get settled into a motel and then go find some clothes. The boys had it easy—they could just nip down and find a tux rental place (a task that was admittedly complicated a bit by the presence of Castiel, who had no idea what to do, nor even why they were doing it). Leah, on the other hand, had seen to their clothes before absconding with a couple of their illegal credit cards and hitting the bridal shops in the mall on her own.
So, yes, her dress was off the rack, and at $200 on sale it was dirt cheap by the uppity Cullens’ standards, but screw them—it was fine. It was a long, slinky red sheath that hugged her body tightly and made the most of her relatively limited curves while highlighting her wolf-imparted muscle tone. It was strapless and showed off her shoulders and her collarbones, and she liked it. It was even red, just like the brat wanted, not to mention classic and “traditional” in the cut—but she’d be damned if she was getting any beadwork. Why not just go the whole hog and ask me to wear fringe and moccasins and feathers in my hair, you little bitch, she thought angrily. She’d instead rounded out her look with a pair of new, strappy black T-buckle stilettos, and so now she felt ready to take on anything.
In the spirit of sexy rebellion, she’d detoured through Victoria’s Secret on her way through the mall. She’d found a lovely black satin ensemble consisting of a tiny pair of panties and a gorgeous basque—which was beaded, she’d discovered to her vicious delight. She was almost sorry that she was skipping pantyhose—she’d have felt deliciously naughty showing up at the prim and perfect Cullens’ wearing those underwear along with a garter belt and silk stockings. Ah, well—as the philosopher Jagger once said, you can’t always get what you want.
She was wearing her underwear and shoes now as she put the finishing touches on her face. Her dress was hanging on the back of the door, still in its wrapper; she’d wondered if it would have been worth it to leave it out in the room, just for the satisfaction of being able to waltz out of the bathroom to put it on as she was now, just to see the looks on the boys’ faces. Becoming a wolf had pretty much stripped her of all modesty, and it wasn’t as if they hadn’t seen her naked before when she transformed. However, they hadn’t seen her all dolled up before, and she knew that despite what some people thought, less was more; she knew that being covered as she was was way sexier than just being naked.
But, no—she unwrapped the dress and shimmied into it in the bathroom, not even taking the opportunity to go out and try and rattle Cas by asking him to zip her up. She smoothed the satiny fabric over her hips, her mouth curling in unconscious pleasure at the feel of the material against her skin. She was more comfortable in her jeans and a tee and sneakers, but she couldn’t deny the little thrill of feminine satisfaction she felt at getting dressed up.
Her smile widened as she turned and picked up the velvety box sitting innocuously on the edge of the sink. There was an element of feminine pleasure there, too—but she was well aware that it was mostly vindictive spite that warmed the cockles of her heart when she contemplated its contents.
Dean and Sam had dropped her off right in the heart of downtown to go shopping; she could tell by their exchanged looks that they were turning her loose in the more fashionable district, which meant they’d picked up from her comments on the Cullens that she’d need (and want) something on the nicer end of things. They had the good grace not to say anything, and as un-subtle as it may have been, she appreciated the thought. Overall, she’d been a pretty cheap date, but had been wandering through the streets toward their planned rendezvous point with her plastic-covered dress slung over her shoulder when it happened.
She really hadn’t been paying much attention to her surroundings as she walked down Pine, but the glittering display in the large glass windows that fronted the store had been impossible to miss. She’d stopped, and realized that she was standing in front of Tiffany’s. And there, nestled in white satin in the main display case, was a necklace and earring set, subtle and sophisticated, of rubies and diamonds in gold—perfect for her dress.
She’d left in a hurry. That was ridiculous, she told herself. There was no way she’d manage to pull off that purchase on her fraudulent credit card. She needed jewelry with her neckline, yes, but she’d make do with whatever was quick and easy and she could rustle up at a Wal-Mart or something—or she would just go without. There was simply no way she could get anything like that. Her sharp wolf eyes had spotted the price—cool at a quarter million. She supposed she could break in—their security measures were nothing to one of her size and strength and speed—but it wouldn’t exactly be inconspicuous.
No. It was childish, anyway, not to mention petty, to want to show up wearing something that would merit the Cullen Stamp of Approval. She didn’t need to prove herself. She would not lower herself to their level…although the looks on their faces would be so worth it—
A honk had jolted her out of her reverie, and she looked up at the low rumble of the Impala’s engine as it slid up to the curb. She flashed a smile at the passengers and went around the back, rapping on the trunk lid so that she could put her purchases inside when Dean popped it open. Then she slid into the back seat—next to Cas.
Castiel. The angel.
She’d given up. She’d told him it was stupid and childish and ridiculous and that she was outright using him to do something wrong—but could he please, please, please zap in there later tonight and yoink that jewelry for her? She promised to give it back!
“Give it back?!” Dean demanded. “Are you kidding? Do you have any idea what we could sell that for?”
“Maybe a tenth of what it was worth—if we were lucky,” Sam answered pragmatically. “More likely we’d just get arrested for trying to fence stolen property.”
“Exactly,” Leah said firmly. “And anyway, I’m not going to ask him to steal for me—especially not for something so stupid. I just…I just want to borrow it. I just want…” She’d trailed off, unwilling to say what she just wanted, but her friends seem to know all the same.
“Well, then, what do you say, Cas?” Dean queried after a moment, looking in the rearview mirror at Cas’s concerned face. “The lady needs to look the part for this shindig. Gonna help out the damsel in distress?”
Leah eased open the plush case, and she couldn’t help but grin. The blood-red stones shone darkly up at her, the fire of the diamonds that surrounded each one playing over her face. She gently lifted the collar of stones from the case and fastened it ‘round her neck; it was cool against her flesh, and came to rest just at the hollow of her throat. The earrings were next, and then she stepped back and took in the finished product, and she smiled.
It was, in a word, perfect.
She took a deep breath, and then turned and swung open the bathroom door—but she stopped short at the sight that greeted her, and she couldn’t help the lazy, catlike grin that spread over her face.
Three sets of black-jacketed shoulders greeted her: one broad, one lean, and one wiry. Her eyes wandered involuntarily downward to check out the view from below, and she was not disappointed.
Dean was fussing, of course. “Man, I hate wearing these things,” he groused, tugging at his collar. “And you remember what happened the last time we had to get dressed up like this.”
Sam had zero sympathy. “Yeah, I do—I spent the whole evening as cougar bait,” he said flatly.
Dean stopped, looked over at his brother with a contemplative air, and then in a distinctly amused voice said, “You’re right—I guess the evening wasn’t a total loss.”
Cas seemed to notice no difference in his wardrobe, simply standing still to the side, as usual. Leah gave them all one last once-over, a small, visceral thrill running through her belly at the thought of having such fine escorts (and all to herself, no less), before she flicked off the bathroom light and cleared her throat, announcing her presence.
Years before, back when she was still human, Leah had been aware of the fact that she was pretty. She wasn’t arrogant about it, but she wasn’t falsely modest, either. She’d had her share of male attention, and had enjoyed primping and dressing up. But her years as a wolf had more or less beaten that out of her—years spent in the minds of men who couldn’t stand her, who ignored her, who she was forced to be naked in front of and yet who wrote her off as somehow unworthy had a way of making her forget that she was attractive.
But now, as they all three turned, and she felt the caress of their eyes upon her, she suddenly remembered, and she fought to keep the smile from her face. She looked up at Sam and Dean’s appreciative looks and said with false nervousness, “Okay, guys—tell me honestly.”
She did a slow turn where she stood, showing them the full three-sixty before she went ahead and smiled, and she asked with mock seriousness, “Would you do me?”
A sleazy grin stretched Dean’s mouth, and he said roughly, “Oh, hell, yeah.”
She smirked back at him before looking to Sam, who gave her another obvious once-over and then said, “I think I’m gonna have to go with a yes on that, too.”
She beamed, and then turned to Cas. He was watching the proceedings impassively, and it seemed to take him a moment to realize that he was expected to provide an answer—but it was obvious that he didn’t even understand that there was a question.
Dean looked torn between amusement and disgust. “I don’t think we need to ask him—we all know he would,” he said.
Cas’s brows knitted. “Would what?”
Sam snorted, and Leah rolled her eyes. “Let me rephrase that for you,” she said, putting her hands on her hips with a saucy look. “Cas, would you have sex with me?”
He looked startled, blinking at her with a wide-eyed expression. He cut his eyes over to the Winchesters, who were watching him with raised eyebrows, and then back to Leah with no little trepidation. He licked his lips, hesitated, and then uncertainly asked, “Now?”
“No—later,” Leah answered briskly over the revolted laughter of the other two. “Well!” she said brightly, turning to them. “I think that means we’re pretty much ready. Oh—one thing,” she added, crossing the room to where the boys’ clothes were spread out over the beds. The rough fabric of the trench coat was easily identifiable, and she snatched it up. “This is a must,” she said firmly, draping it over Cas’s shoulders and coaxing his arms into the sleeves. “You’re not you without it.”
Then she scooped up her red wrap and her little black clutch, took a deep, fortifying breath, and turned to face them. “Let’s roll.”
Author’s Note: Leah’s line about the philosopher Jagger is obviously a reference to the Rolling Stones, but the line itself is actually from an episode of “House.” In either case, it was too perfect to not use in the fic.
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