Title: Charge Their Doings
"There are some upon this earth of yours," returned the Spirit, "who
lay claim to know us, and who do their deeds of passion, pride,
ill-will, hatred, envy, bigotry, and selfishness in our name, who are
as strange to us and all out kith and kin, as if they had never lived.
Remember that, and charge their doings on themselves, not us."
A Christmas Carol
Caleb fumbled with the lock-there seemed to be two of them. He couldn't
synchronize the card and his hand to turn the knob when the light
turned green. Finally, he put his shoulder into the door and stumbled
into the room. He crashed onto the floor, getting up close and personal
to the rough, burgundy carpeting.
"Fuckin' Joshua, fuckin' Boone." He got to his hands and feet, then
used the bed to bring himself to a sitting position on the bed. He took
off his shirt, getting tangled in the sleeves before he was finally
released from the material. He was hot, and could see his skin was
flushed especially around his collar bone.
"Dammit." He swallowed. He was parched. He wished he felt ill because
of a wicked hangover, but that wasn't the case. He stood up, trying to
lurch into the bathroom but instead ended face down in the other double
Reaves lay that way for awhile, awaken by the uncomfortable sensation
of John's ring digging into his chest. He had taken to wearing the
former Knight's band around his neck, on a chain. John rarely wore the
ring when he was alive, but he wanted to pay some sort of tribute to
his mentor. He owed the man much, to watch over John's sons.
There was no way he was going to be able to keep his promise to Sam and
Dean. He wasn't going to make Christmas, let alone the rest of his
life. They wouldn’t be happy with him, even if he was dead. 'Sam,' he
thought for a moment.
Caleb grabbed his head. The throbbing felt like his head would split in
two. His stomach twisted and he rolled into a fetal position. "Poison
in the drink." He said out loud, disgusted he had been so easily duped.
Boone and Joshua had passed along some information about a cult with
possible connections to the demon. Caleb had garnered expertise in
cults over the years, finding most of their beliefs based on some
truth. In this case, the truth was The Order of the Solar Temple did
not trust strangers. "God, help me."
"No, I am sure he is busy with important matters."
Caleb uncurled himself, groaning as he rolled to the other side of the
bed, pulling the knife from its ankle sheath ready to defend himself.
At the head of the bed was the hotel clerk who had checked him in a few
days ago. Dark hair was swept over for a bad comb over, pasty skin and
yellow glowing eyes. "What the hell?"
"Maybe it should be who in the hell?" The demon smirked, noticing, he
was not getting the reaction he wanted from the hunter. He shrugged his
shoulders. "No? Not that amusing?"
"No. Not so much." He had never had any experience with the
Winchesters' demon. He tried to remember everything John and the boys
had told him, but it wasn't much. The search for the demon had been a
personal quest, the other hunters not included. Caleb felt ill-prepared.
"Quite a predicament you got yourself in." The demon gestured to the
edge of the bed, and took a seat. Reaves threw the knife and scrambled
for the holy water, only to have the knife returned to him and land in
the headboard a mere inch from his face. "That won't work, not here,"
the demon said then gestured to the holy water Caleb had been reaching
for, "and not that either."
Caleb wiped his brow. He needed to be calm, if he was to walk out of
this situation alive. "Why are you here?"
"A friendly visit," the demon said, folding his hands together.
"Why a hotel clerk?" Reaves relied on his sarcasm. It was unnerving
having the demon this close, and to be helpless, not only from the
poison but there seemed to be a strange buzzing in his head. "Why not
Jessica Alba or Angelina Jolie? That's who I would want paying me a
The demon cocked his head to the left, yellow eyes glowing. "Not going
to ask me about John?"
Caleb pulled himself up into a sitting position. He stared, unblinking
in the eyes of the bane of the Winchester family. "I assume he's giving
you, well you know. . ." Still keeping his eyes on the demon, the
psychic pulled the knife from the headboard. "I know about the deal and
it's gonna bite you in the ass."
"Really? Wait, let me guess?" The clerk stood up and walked around the
room. "You think the Brotherhood will undermine me?" He started to
laugh and sauntered to the Caleb's bedside. "Please, every decade in
one form or another they have existed and look, I am still here.
Imagine that." He bent down low, his mouth near the psychic's ear. "You
can not stop me and neither can the Winchesters."
Reaves felt his strength ebbing, but brought his hands around the neck
of the demon and began to squeeze. "Hell isn't big enough for all of
us. Stay away from Sam and Dean."
The demon laughed and tears flowed down his face. Caleb let go unable
to hold on. "I am familiar with your family. Actions tell," the demon
continued to revel in mirth.
"Shut up." Reaves backed away, wiped a hand down his mouth and felt the
heat emanating off his own body.
The hotel clerk sobered, and squared his shoulders. "Not yet. You will
be visited by my minions. . ."
"Seriously, Dude, A Christmas Carol?" Caleb interrupted. He tried to
work up some saliva to moisten his mouth. "Been there, read that," he
"Think of me as Marley, your old friend, telling you of things to come.
And the people I'm sending you tonight, well, they are special." The
demon explained, clearly disappointed the psychic misunderstood the
situation. "This is not like the book. That was about second chances,
and we know how this version will end."
Caleb narrowed his eyes, trying to think of a quick response. The words
died on his lips as his eyes closed again, his body a willing
participant to the demon's plans even though his mind rebelled.
Reaves didn't know how long he was unconscious, but eventually he awoke
again, peeled his eyes open and was startled to find someone else in
his room. He closed his eyes again. He had to call for help, but felt
so heavy and lethargic. "Can't I just be left alone?" Caleb groaned. He
wondered what kind of poison was used on him to cause these
hallucinations, and got the feeling that perhaps this was more reality
than not. The psychic opened his eyes once again, studying the man
sitting on the other bed. "Damn, is it you?"
John Winchester gave a weary grin, which didn't reach his eyes. "I
can't answer that."
"Okay." Reaves pushed himself up, only to crumple back down into the
bed. "I . . ." Caleb started, wanting to say so much to this image of
John, but unsure if this was really John Winchester returned from the
John interrupted, not letting Caleb form a coherent question. "You
don't look good."
The psychic studied his deceased mentor. He was still rugged looking,
but pale, and aged. "You look a little rough around the edges too."
Reaves pinched the bridge of his nose. "Aren't you going to ask me
about your sons?" If he knew anything about John Winchester, it was
that the man loved his sons.
John leaned forward. "This isn't about them, it's about you."
"That's not comforting," Caleb whispered, and turned his head away from
John. He ached, his heart ached, and he yet he felt detached as if this
was happening to another person, not to him.
John scratched the stubble on his chin. "I'm not into kind words and
"You never were. More of a kick ass, shit-eating grin type." Reaves
looked back with a smirk. He wanted to take in this image of John
Winchester, burn it into his memory. "So why are you here?"
"Remember the first Christmas we spent together back in eighty-four?
You were a cocky teenager." John shook his head. "You know, not much
"Wait, you're the ghost of Christmas past? Greeeaaat." Reaves paused
for a moment. "Oh, God, I think I had a mullet back then." Caleb
groaned, masking the fact the groan was more from his fevered body than
the bad hair memory. "And this is important –why?"
"You'll see." John closed his eyes and the psychic was brought back
Caleb took refuge in the Pastor's kitchen. His adopted father was
there, stringing popcorn with a needle and thread as if he was
performing life-saving surgery. "The carolers are giving me a headache.
They're so fu--," he cut himself off, as Jim walked into the room,
"Tis the season," Jim replied, humming along with the carolers'
rendition of Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer.
The soon to be fourteen-year-old slumped down into a chair next to Mac.
"I'm a kid whose birthday is near Christmas. We always get screwed this
time of year. 'Tis the season to be screwed."
Ames spared a glance at his dejected son. They had only been father and
son for a little over a year. And the renowned doctor knew his son
didn't enjoy the holidays. "John is coming to spend Christmas with us."
Caleb perked up, sitting up straight in his chair. "Cool."
"And his sons," Jim added, opening up the oven to check on the roast
"Creepy kid and the drooling baby—fuunnn." The teen shrugged his
Mac looked at his watch. "Now."
The doorbell rang, and Jim went to the front door with a grin. Caleb
could hear the Pastor's loud voice from the kitchen. "Merry Christmas,
John! Hello, Dean, Merry Christmas to you too."
Mac stood up, and pulled on his son's sleeve, gesturing for him to
stand up and greet the guests too.
John was shifting Sam from one shoulder to the other, and taking off
his jacket. Dean stood by his father. The older Winchester handed his
coat to the minister. "Thanks for inviting us. My friends just had a
baby, and after Thanksgiving, I didn't know if I could be around that.
"Sam's sleeping," Dean commented, getting the minister's attention.
Jim smiled at the sleeping baby, whose mouth gaped open with a soft
snore. "Okay, why don't we put him on the floor?"
John put him gently down on the carpeted floor, while Dean grabbed the
afghan and pillows from the couch. He surrounded his baby brother with
the pillows and then covered him with the blanket.
Caleb rolled his eyes at the scene. The kid was too weird. Mac was
talking to John, but turned to glare at his son.
Jim ushered Dean over to Caleb. "You remember Caleb and Mac from the
Dean nodded, not looking up to either, but glancing to his father
instead who gave him a nod.
John pointed to his oldest son's jacket pocket. There was some red
construction paper sticking out. "Dean made a Christmas ornament at
school. He was hoping he could hang it on your tree?"
Caleb shook his head, as Mac bent down and pulled the ornament
carefully out of the child's jacket. "Hallmark does it a lot better."
The doctor placed the ornament on the floor, and helped the boy take
off his jacket. He handed it to his son with a warning, "Caleb."
"What?" Reaves took the jacket, and immediately passed it on the
Jim pointed to the evergreen tree in the corner, which was still not
completely decorated. "Sure, Dean, pick out any place you want."
Ames shook his head, the teen still not comprehending what his father
expected him to do. Mac went into the kitchen and retrieved the garland
he was working on. Dean stood before the tree, searching a location for
"How about up there? I'll give you a lift." Mac suggested.
Dean looked up at the doctor, doubtfully, but admired the location in
the tree, which he couldn’t reach alone. He nodded, and Mac lifted him
up to place the ornament near the golden star.
"That looks great, son," John stated with a glass of amber liquid
firmly in his hand.
The men finished decorating the tree with Caleb alternating between
making suggestions on where to place the ornaments and insulting the
decorating abilities of the other hunters. "Charlie Brown's tree looks
a whole hell of a lot of better."
The noise woke up two-year old Sam, who was in awe of the Christmas
lights. He opened and closed his hands. "Up!" he said to the adults. He
smiled and pointed to the lights. "Pretty lights."
The group sat down for dinner of a roast, mashed potatoes and carrots.
Dessert was kindly donated by parishioners of Jim's church. Sated, the
minister read the story of the nativity to the two youngsters while
Caleb, Mac and John played poker.
Satisfied with his cards, and that he would win this hand, Caleb made
conversation with John Winchester. "I've been practicing that stuff you
taught me last time." He hoped to learn more from the older man.
Winchester glanced at Ames before answering the teen. "Think you're
ready for some other moves?"
"Yeah, of course," Reaves answered excitedly. He wanted to learn a new
combat move as soon as possible. He was already involved with karate
classes too. He was interrupted by Dean.
"Sir, Sam needs to go to bed now." The five year old stated, as Mary
and Joseph had just made it to the manger. The youngest Winchester had
fallen asleep in his brother's lap.
The Pastor closed the Bible. "Dean, you can call me Jim, okay?"
"Yes, Sir, I mean Jim, but Sammy." Dean stood up, picking up his little
brother. He held him tight, although he shouldn't have the
responsibility of bearing the chubby baby.
John started to rise, but Mac stopped him. "Caleb, why don't you help
Caleb snorted in disbelief, studying his cards again. "No, Dad,"
Mac pulled the cards from his adopted son's hands, closed them, and
laid them on the table. "Yes, son."
"I'm winning." Reaves turned over the cards and fanned them out showing
his winning hand.
Mac shook his head. "No, you're giving both John and I headache." He
ruffled Caleb's hair to soften the criticism. The teen immediately
neatened his locks. "When you try to read us you lack finesse."
"Feels like a jackhammer, kid," John commented and then showed his
cards-four Jacks. "I think I was going to win this hand."
Caleb slid his chair back with a huff. Dean stood near his father,
watching the exchange. The teen took the sleeping toddler out of the
"Night, Ace. Merry Christmas." John gave his son a brief hug. Dean
squirmed away and started after Caleb who was climbing the stairs to
the second floor.
The teen heard the little footsteps behind him. Caleb knew he was being
sent to keep the children occupied. The adults were putting a bike
together for Dean. To think it took a mechanic, a neurosurgeon and a
minister to put together a bike showed it was a sad state of affairs in
the world of the Brotherhood.
He entered the room that had been set up for the brothers. The teen
didn't know what to do next. "Well?" he said to the five-year-old
"He needs his diaper changed." Dean crossed his arms, waiting to see
Reaves didn't do diaper duty. He actually didn't even like kids. He
handed the sleeping toddler back to his brother. "That's all you kid."
Dean accepted the burden, placing his sleeping brother on the floor. He
unzipped the fleecy pajamas, and expertly changed the diaper with
little Sam only fidgeting a little before falling back asleep. "I can
take care of him. You don't have to stay."
Caleb shook his head. Mac had practically ordered him to go with Dean
and Sam. He couldn't go back downstairs without a good excuse. "I'm
staying. Probably going to be eating at the kid's table tomorrow too."
The five-year-old handed his brother to the teen. He pulled out a
stuffed lamb, and wound it up, placing it near his brother. The musical
strains of When You Wish Upon A Star wafted through the room. "You need
to make sure he doesn’t slip off the bed." Dean waited until Caleb
nodded, before disappearing into the bathroom with his little knapsack.
He quickly returned wearing pajamas with Chip and Dale Rescue Rangers.
Caleb had started humming the Disney song, then caught himself and gave
Dean a withering look. "Those are embarrassing."
The boy ignored the teen, and climbed into the twin bed, cuddling close
to his brother. Caleb moved over, slightly, his long legs almost
hanging over the side of the bed. A few minutes ticked by, and Reaves
noticed the five-year-old still had not closed his eyes. "Are you going
"Not tired. I have to watch over Sammy."
Caleb rolled his eyes. The toddler was snoring; oblivious he had an
audience watching over him. "Jim put stockings by your bed." He
gestured to the red and white striped socks hooked on the knobs of the
"Yep," Dean gave them a quick glance.
Caleb sighed. Talking to Dean was difficult. The teen let his mind
open, knowing he would easily be able to touch the boy's mind since
there were no barriers in place unlike Mac and John. He flinched when
one thought came through loud and clear. "Oh, kid, don't go there."
Dean frowned in puzzlement. "I'm not going anywhere."
Reaves brushed his hand through his hair. He was thirteen, almost
fourteen. He didn't consider himself a bad person, but here he was
placed in an awkward situation. Mac was always telling him that telling
the truth was always easier than creating a lie. But, lies came easier
for him. This case warranted the truth. "Santa's not going to bring
your mom back."
Dean lifted his head, propping himself up on his elbows. "You don't
know that." The boy said quietly, and gripped a piece of Sam's pajama
Caleb tried to assure the boy. He had gone through the same thing when
his parents had died. He understood only too well what Dean Winchester
was going through. "It didn't work last year." He turned so he was
facing the five-year-old. "Look, kid, I know. When my mom and dad died
I went to go and live with my grandmother. She was good to me, but she
wasn't my Mom and Dad." Caleb felt his heart break a little as he told
Dean about his past. He still missed them-his parents and his
grandmother. "You're lucky kid; at least you got your dad." Reaves
cleared his throat. Had one of his parents lived, or his grandmother
then he wouldn’t have been placed in foster care or at that psychiatric
hospital. Caleb counted himself lucky Mac had found him.
Dean looked away, and let go of his brother's pajamas. "There's no such
thing as Santa Claus, is there?"
Caleb was relieved he didn't have to be the person to tell a
five-year-old that Santa didn't exist. He never understood why people
wanted to delude children with the promises of a man in a red suit who
could make all dreams come true. He stopped believing when Santa didn't
return his parents. "No, but you're not surprised."
Dean shook his head. He smiled down at his brother. "But, Sammy
believes in Santa."
"Yeah, I can see that." Caleb didn't believe the toddler had any
opinion about Santa, but maybe he would be a Santa believer until he
was at least seven maybe even eight. Reaves wouldn’t admit it, but
having the baby blob cuddled next to him was comforting. Caleb though
didn’t want to go down the road of the warm and fuzzies. "Hey, why are
you talking to me?"
Dean lay down once more on his side, facing the teen and his brother.
"'Cause you're a kid, like me."
Caleb snorted, that was a misconception he needed to correct. "Dude,
I'm gonna be 14 in a week. I'm so not a kid."
The five-year-old nodded. He closed his eyes, and Caleb thought he was
going to fall asleep, however the teenager presumed too much. Dean
opened his eyes again. "What happened to your family?
Reaves exhaled sharply. He didn't talk about his family, much to Mac's
dismay. The memories were his to cultivate and maintain, not to share.
"It's not a bed time story, Mac'll kill me."
"You can tell me." Dean perked up. "I won't say anything. I promise."
"Yeah, I get that you can be trusted to stay quiet." Dean had been
quiet, shutting his voice. "I swear, you say anything it will be like
the Godfather all over again."
"Who's the godfather?"
Caleb shook his head. "Never mind." He had to remember Dean was five,
going on six and lacked a pop culture education. Caleb thought seven
was a good age to introduce Dean to the Corleone saga. "I don't like to
talk about them. . ."
Dean reached out a hand, and brushed it against Caleb's arm. It was
only a second of contact, but it was strangely reassuring. Reaves
started his story. "My Mom she was beautiful and my Dad he was tall and
strong. He didn't smile a lot. We had this house by the water-went
every summer. I liked it." For a moment Caleb could smell the salty,
fresh air and hear the seagulls. But he also remembered the rest. "Mom
and Dad were fighting and something happened to my Dad." Reaves
censored himself, omitting that the newspapers called it a
murder-suicide. But, he knew better. He knew the truth. "I hate the
ocean now—it makes me sick." He said it more harshly than he intended.
But the five-year-old seemed to understand. "I don't want to go home
either," Dean said sealing their common bond. "I think maybe your mom
and my mom would have been friends."
"Maybe." Caleb smiled. "Get some sleep, I'll take this watch."
The teen had the intention of staying in the room until Dean fell
asleep, but the next thing he knew a little hand was slapping him on
"Five more minutes," he mumbled. But the little hand continued and
wiped down his face.
"What?" he grabbed the hand and opened his eyes. Sam Winchester smiled
above him, wiggling his hand out of Caleb's grip.
Dean was sitting cross-legged on the bed, his stocking in his lap.
There was a red apple, an orange and a super bouncy ball. Jim sucked at
being a Santa.
With a groan Caleb propped himself up, and then noticed his stocking
was on his chest, which meant everyone knew he had spent the night with
the kids. It was downright embarrassing. "Shit," he uttered.
"Not supposed to use bad words around Sammy." Dean warned, his hair
sticking up in tuffs.
He waved off the five-year-old's admonishment. He dumped out the
contents of his stocking. There was a pear, banana and some walnuts.
"This sucks, want to trade?"
Dean shook his head. He climbed down from the bed, and then reached for
his brother, sitting him down with the stuffed lamb. Dean returned to
Caleb, who noticed it was six in the morning. He hated six in the
morning, seven in the morning and most of the times eight too.
He groaned, and closed his eyes. Dean shook his arm. "What?"
Dean handed him a package of peanut M & M's. "Dad bought them for
me on the ride over. You can have them. Mrs. Morris says I know how to
Caleb smiled at the yellow wrapper. He liked M & M's too. "You're
not too bad Deuce."
The five-year-old cocked his head to the side. "My Dad calls me Ace."
He corrected the teenager.
Reaves swung his legs over, and stood up. He tussled Dean's hair.
"You're Deuce to me."
They went downstairs, Dean holding his brother's hand and a paper bag
in the other. He helped Sam down two steps, before Sam decided it would
be faster if he sat down and went down the stairs on his butt.
The adults were already at the kitchen table, with coffee cups in hand.
"Merry Christmas!" Jim greeted them.
"I think Santa left something for you Dean." John reached out and
picked up his youngest son.
Dean looked up at Caleb, for the last moment playing along that there
was such a thing as Santa Claus.
The five-year-old's eyes opened wide when he saw the blue bicycle near
the tree. "Is that for me?"
"Yep," John replied with a smile.
Dean studied the bike, touching each part of it. He had forgotten
briefly about the brown paper bag. A moment later, he pulled himself
away from the new bike and went over to his father who was trying to
engage Sammy in playing with his new toy instead of the box. "Dad, I
made this for you." He handed his father a slightly crushed, green
construction paper scroll. "And Sammy likes to eat paper, so I made him
this." He pulled a little sock puppet from the paper bag, made from one
of his own socks.
The baby grabbed the puppet and called it "Dean!" John opened the
scroll which proclaimed him 'The Best Dad Ever.' He gave his son a hug,
not knowing if he actually lived up to the praise or if he ever would.
"Merry Christmas, son," Mac said to Caleb, placing a hand on the back
of his neck. He pointed to the pile of gifts in the corner. "I think
the Ames family got carried away."
Reaves looked at the pile in awe. The colorfully wrapped gifts were
piled as high as his hip. He had already unwrapped, learned what was
inside and then rewrapped the gifts. But still, seeing them piled
together made him appreciate his eccentric, extended family. They had
been welcoming and generous.
Mac noticed the gifts seemed to overtake the room, and knew the
Winchester boys had only each received a toy. Caleb was already sifting
through the gifts, deciding which one was worth opening again. The
doctor bent down and whispered into his adopted son's ear. "I suggest
you give one to Dean."
Caleb whipped his head around, incredulous. "Why?" he said loudly.
Mac raised his eyebrows to recommend the teen lower his voice. "Because
it's the right thing to do and I said so."
Caleb narrowed his eyes. His hands brushed against a silver wrapped
package. "Fine," he said to his father. He picked an electronic game he
already had at home. He didn't need two. "Here." The teen interrupted
the boy, his brother and father and held out the gift, shaking it to
prompt Dean to take it. "Merry Christmas."
Dean glanced at his father and Caleb and carefully peeled away the
paper. "Thanks!" He cradled the game in his hands, like a prized
possession. He smiled at Caleb. "You know how to share too."
Caleb shrugged his shoulders. He was starting to like this kid. "I'm
not giving the M & M's back to you." The teen patted his pocket
where the yellow wrapper was safely ensconced.
The motion made him groan. He felt damp with sweat. He tried to open
his eyes, to see John, but he was face down on the burgundy palm tree
printed bedspread. There was no one with him, he was alone and hurting.
Oblivion was welcomed.
Onto Part 2