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Stream of Consciousness, Episode 6.16

*is a limp noodle*

I have to admit, I haven’t been this tense throughout an episode in a long time. True to the episode title, it followed the Agatha Christie approach of a whodunit coupled with steadily dwindling numbers. Nicely played, Show.

 

I didn’t know what they were going to do next, how it was going to roll out, who was going to die. I watched the whole thing leaning forward—as if that would give me a clue as to what was to come. Leaps of faith and random plot holes aside, I thought this was a really well-done episode. In fact, I think I’ve started to consider the episode plots to be more like…fishing nets. They’re woven together and catch the important stuff, leaving things too small to bring on board to fall through the holes.

For the most part.

The only thing I could have wished for was a bit more angst from everyone for taking a human life—regardless of the fact that they were monster-possessed at the time. But Dean’s speech at the end, and the stance he’s been taking with Sam since he was re-souled (“It wasn’t you”), helped me get my head around that.

I’ll go there more in a bit.

Several years ago, I watched a movie called “Zodiac” about the Zodiac serial killer. Something in that movie gave me the crazy idea of what if all serial killers were possessed during the time they committed the murders and that possession screwed up their heads to the point they thought they did it? This idea led to a co-written story by Sojourner84 and myself called, “The Devil Inside,” but I was reminded of it tonight with this “new” monster.

Especially at the beginning.

So the THEN set the stage, reminding us who Rufus is, that Samuel had been torturing Alphas for intel, that Samuel had sold the boys out and Dean promised to kill him, who Gwen was, and that the Mother of All was topside.

We get to the NOW and we’re at a truck stop with a Truck Driver (hereafter referred to as TD) is filling up his semi with fuel. He turns from the pump back to his truck and the deceptively innocent-looking Mother of All—complete with white nightgown-like sundress and bare feet—is standing there, asking for a ride. TD agrees and once she’s inside, he asks for her name. She tells him it’s Eve (which…I’m not sure if they’re going Biblical on us here or if she just thought that would be ironic…nowhere in anything I’ve read and/or learned had anything about Eve mothering monsters—even considering that one of her sons killed the other…set me straight here, peeps). Jury’s still out for me on the name.

TD asks her where she wants to go. She’s like, “However far you want,” and leans over and kisses him. TD, a decent man, pushes her away and says that this isn’t what she wants. He hands her a pamphlet that says Jesus Loves You and tells her the emptiness inside her is a hunger for him. Eve says that Jesus was just a man, but TD tells her, with a calm, patient smile, that he was also the son of God, sent here because he loves us.

Eve’s smile is cold as she says that God doesn’t care about us. “Your father made you and then abandoned you, so you pray. You see signs where there’s nothing. Your apocalypse came and went and you didn’t notice. A mother would never abandon her children like he did.”

I think I might be religioused out a bit with storylines because she did not feel menacing or threatening to me at all and there was no fire churning up in me with her claims about God as there had been in Season 5. I knew what I believed and anything she said seemed a non-issue—which is very different from how I reacted to the Lucifer/God stuff in Season 5.

 I was just waiting to see what she was going to do to him, basically. Which came next. She asks, innocent, wide smile in place, if she can tell him a secret and poor, befuddled TD nods. She moves in as if to whisper into his ear and there’s this horrible sucking/squishing sound and TD is all AH!

Next thing you see is a dark-haired woman asleep in bed. TD opens the bedroom door and walks around to her side of the bed. She wakes up, smiles happily to see him…and then he beats her to death with a claw hammer.

Holy blood-soaked beginning, Batman!

After the title card, we’re at Bobby’s. The boys are standing in front of his desk while Bobby is pointing at locations on a map and telling them he’s been getting blasts from hunters all week.

-          Nest of vamps

-          Werewolf dance party

-          Shifters (where two hunters were killed)

-          Ghouls, ghouls

-          Ghoul/wraith smorgasbord

Dean notices the path is running down I-80.

Dean: It’s like a Sherman’s March Monster Mash.

Sam: Where to?”

Bobby circles a point on the map where TD beat his family to death. It is always interesting to me when these types of things stand out to them like “their kind of weird.” Horrible things happen like that all the time, all over the world. People are capable of unimaginable cruelty just as they are capable of inconceivable love and forgiveness. But…that’s what kinda led me to the possessed-serial-killers-story idea. Not that I think that’s actually possible, but after nearly six years of immersion into the make-believe world of the supernatural where our heroes see a man going ballistic and killing his family as a potential trigger for their kind of weird…it just gets me thinking.

So, Dean, Sam, and Bobby suit up and head to the jail to talk to TD. The man is completely distraught, his face haggard, his eyes haunted. He doesn’t remember a thing—he woke up in his truck at work (Starlight Cannery) and didn’t know how he got there. He went home and found his worst nightmare. *rubs heart* Poor guy. Last thing he remembered was giving a kid a ride from the truck stop, but figured she took off at some point.

So, the guys manage to bluff their way into using a police computer (which, if they can do that, one wonders why they were so awful acting like actors acting like them last week…maybe it was camera fear…*grins*) and Sam starts looking up film footage from the truck stop security cameras from the night of the murders.

Dean: Demon possession or ghosts? I thought this was a monster thing.

Sam finds TD, then they see the girl. Dean’s all, “Hello!” until she turns to face the camera for a brief moment and her face goes all gnarly and the video gets creases across it. It wasn’t much worse than the wraith in Sam, Interrupted or the changelings in The Kids Are Alright, but it creeps them out.

Dean: What the hell is that?

Sam (nervously): Bobby?

Bobby: Maybe the vamps and ghouls are coming in for Mother’s Day.

Dean moves around the desk to face the other two saying they have zero intel on how to gank the MoA.

Dean: What do we do, throw salt and hope?

Bobby: No, we turn tail and run! We’re in over our heads.

Dean says they need real info if they should run into this gal, but before they can go any farther down this line of thinking, the cops in the station are on the move. Turns out some guy went postal down at the cannery—same place TD worked. Bobby says he’ll go check it out and tells the boys to finish up there.

So, a trench coat-wearing Bobby (looking every inch the weathered cop) walks up to an officer, flashes his fake FBI badge and introduces himself as Agent Willis. Cop tells him that there are six dead and that a guy just opened fire with a hunting rifle. The police chief walks out of the building and wants to know if there’s a Fed convention in town. Standing behind him is Rufus, who walks up to Bobby all, “Agent Willis?”

We never got Rufus’ fake FBI name, but it would have been cool if he’d have gone with Fuller. Just sayin’.

Bobby: Agent. Wasn’t expecting you. Yet.

Rufus: Apparently you didn’t get the memo.

He leads Bobby away from the cops and start talking about how they’re both tracking the same 31 Flavors of Crazy, leading them to this hot mess. They can’t talk to the perp because the cops put 8 bullets in him. Rufus wants to know if they’re going to be partners on this or not.

Rufus: It’s not rocket surgery. We’re here, we do this. Like old times.

Bobby: Long as I get to drive.

Rufus (laughing): Hell no.

Bobby rolls his eyes and follows Rufus away from the crime scene. Next thing you know, they’re in the morgue, poking at the body of the man who went berserk. They’re trying to figure out if this really is a monster thing, or if we really are dealing with a man going ape on his coworkers after one too many road trips.

Bobby sees some black gunk in the man’s ear and swabs it. It’s very…ewww. Just…gack.

Rufus: What is that? Ecto? (sniffs) Not ecto.

Bobby: It’s something new.

Rufus: No such thing as new.

It’s hell being wrong sometimes….

They put together that both of the guys that snapped worked at the cannery and decide to head there and do some sleuthing. They meet up with the boys and Sam, Dean, and Rufus are grins all around about seeing each other again. It’s actually a really cute moment where Sam looks like a kid with his dimples showing, Dean genuinely grinning, and Rufus giving Bobby a good-natured hard time.

Bobby: Why don’t you three get a room?

Dean’s like, “Let’s see what we can see,” and they head into the cannery loaded for bear. Or…y’know. Something.

They ride an elevator up to what appears to be the main working floor of the cannery—and was it me, or did it look like the place was basically abandoned?—and start searching around, flashlights cutting through the murky darkness. They hear a noise and all four draw their weapons, training it on the direction of the sound.

It’s Gwen. She’s standing on the other side of a door with a wire-mesh frame over the window, staring back at them in total surprise. She says Dean’s name, her voice totally framed with question marks.

As soon as I found out she was in this episode, I figured she was a goner. Even without really knowing what the episode was about. She’s had the you’re it syndrome since Cousin Mark was killed. I can’t believe she’s lasted this long, actually. I just would never have guessed how she died.

Anyway, right behind her is Samuel. Dean’s face when he sees that man was dangerous. He goes marching through the doors, zero hesitation, and raises his gun, pointing it right at Samuel’s head.

Dean: Welcome to next time.

Everything else that happened aside? That moment was one of those holy sh*t moments where you realize why this person is not to be screwed with. He was amazingly bad-ass and I had to bite my lip to keep from whimpering a bit. Again, don’t judge me.

However, Sam is on Dean’s heels the moment Dean slams through the doors and he puts his arm across Dean’s, lowering his brother’s weapon. Sam’s got his back toward Samuel and is facing Dean when he says, “Stop.”

Dean: I said I’d kill him!

Sam: Just a second!

Dean. Looks. Pissed. Samuel  just stares at him, his eyes flat, his face almost expressionless except for a tiny bit of challenging contempt that made me just want to smack him. Bobby and Rufus followed Sam in and are watching this exchange. Gwen, meanwhile, is like a shadow on the wall; she’s being so quiet and still.

Rufus: I take it you know each other?

Dean: He’s our grandfather.

Rufus: Ow. Somebody needs a hug.

I really like Rufus. *frowny face* I mean, liked.

Bobby (to Samuel): Why are you here?

Samuel (still staring at Dean): We’re working. You?

Dean: NONE OF YOUR DAMN BUSINESS.

The guy is pissed. His face is tight, his eyes hot, and the only thing keeping him from leaping on Samuel and ripping his head off is Sam’s arm positioned carefully between them.

Bobby: Sam—take Dean for a walk.

Heh. I liked that, actually. Take care of your brother—he’s the only one here who remembers what happened last time you tangled with this man and he’s about to do something he might regret. Watch out for him.

Dean (eyes sliding aside to address Bobby): You gotta be kidding me.

Sam: Dean, it’s fine.

Dean looks at Sam—angry: How?

Sam edges him back, guiding him out of the room. And did you see Sam’s dimples flash there, too? When he is trying to push Dean away without actually having to push him? Only this time it was due to tucking his lips back from effort, not laughter.

They get out in the hall area and Dean turns to his brother.

Dean: What is wrong with you?

Sam: Maybe he knows something.

Dean: You don’t remember what he did. I do.

That kinda got to me—the vocal admission that something that happened to them while Sam was RoboSam having a lasting effect on Dean. All he’s said up to that point was that it didn’t matter, it wasn’t Sam, don’t think about it, don’t remember it. But this time—largely due to the fact that it wasn’t Sam who hurt him, and, in point of fact, actually saved him—he can’t help himself. He is so wound up from the anger and betrayal at seeing that man again, he just lets loose the fact that it messed him up, even if Sam can’t remember.

Sam: I’m not saying don’t; I’m saying not yet.

Dean glowers at him, turns and walks away. Sam goes back into the room where Bobby has his weapon trained on Samuel.

Bobby: So. You’re Samuel.

Samuel: You must be the guy pretending to be their father.

*GRRR!* Forget smacking him. I wanted to rip his head off at that point.

Bobby: Somebody ought to.

I was just dying to know how Dean told Bobby about that whole mess with Crowley and what Samuel did—the locked rooms, the ghouls, all of that. I wanted to see and hear how Bobby took this information, knowing how much he cares about them—and at the time, specifically Dean with Sam being soulless.

Samuel (eyeing Sam): Sam. You’re looking well.

Sam: Save the small talk, alright?

Samuel (with a head tilt): You seem different.

Sam: I got my soul back, no thanks to you, I hear.

Samuel: You hear? You don’t remember?

Sam: I remember enough.

During all of this, Rufus is fidgeting in the background and finally can’t take it, breaking in and wanting to talk shop. He asks Samuel what they’re hunting. And, of course, Samuel has all of the information they have—and then some. Making me wonder how he got all that intel since he no longer had Crowley’s demon connections.

Or…did he?

He tells them that the MoA calls herself Eve and that every freak they hunt can trace their origin back to her.

Bobby: How the hell do you know that?

Samuel: You don’t know half the things I know, kid.

Bobby’s you smug son of a bitch smile at being called ‘kid’ was utterly priceless. In fact, I think I need an avi of that expression. Seriously.

Samuel (bopping his head toward Gwen): You didn’t even know about us until recently.

Bobby: I know you’d throw your own kin to hungry ghouls. I think I know enough.

Gwen (finally coming to life) is all, what? Samuel claims that Dean lied to them. I mean, after all, Dean’s not there to protest, Sam doesn’t remember, and Bobby only knows Dean’s side, right? But Bobby, bless him, tells Gwen to go ask Dean. Which she does.

She finds him a few rooms away, standing alone and scowling. Stalking up to him, she just belts out her question about Samuel really trying to kill him.

Dean: Yes. He didn’t even blink. That’s the guy you’re rolling with.

Gwen: He didn’t tell me. I didn’t know.

Dean: I know. There’s something I need to tell you, too.

And without warning—or, for that matter, blinking—he raises his gun and shoots her dead-center in the chest. BAM! I did not see that coming. I think my mind did a little fizz for a moment as I was like, is she not who we thought? How did he know she was bad? The fact that he was possessed didn’t occur to me until Sam said it because we didn’t see anything crawl into him like with TD. But then, I guess the moment with TD was Eve basically “giving birth” to the monster and from that point, how it got into and out of people was its prerogative.

The rest of them come running at the sound of the gunshot and Rufus immediately starts CPR on Gwen (with rather some heartbreaking imploring to “come on, girl!” as he compresses her chest). Dean’s gone; Sam immediately searches the room for him, returning to find out that Gwen is dead. He says that whatever got into those other guys must’ve gotten into Dean.

One leap I had is that no one thought that someone else could have been in the cannery—I mean, each of their hunting parties got in without the other knowing. They immediately went to it was Dean. Which is what they needed to think for the sake of the story, so…okay. But, still.

Bobby (to Samuel): I’m sorry. If you care.

Samuel: Screw you, I care.

Uh-huh. You sure sold me, man. *rolls eyes*

Bobby tells Rufus to help Samuel put Gwen somewhere while he and Sam lock down the place and look for Dean.

Bobby: We better find Dean before he finds us.

Sam (to Samuel): We’re gonna find him alive, Samuel. Or I’m gonna put a bullet in your head.

I loved that. Do not mess with my brother.

Samuel just glares at Sam. So, Sam and Bobby padlock the doors, cutting off escape routes. Rufus and Samuel put Gwen in an empty room and Samuel loads a gun with Rufus watching. Sam and Bobby search; Samuel and Rufus search. A rat scares the bejeezus out of Sam and Bobby, but no Dean. Sam pulls out his phone and scrolls down to Dean’s name—actually it’s just under “D” and for whatever weird fangirl reason, I thought that was endearing.

Rufus hears the phone (and it’s a regular ring—not a ringtone/song…not sure why). Dean rolls around the edge of a post and draws on Rufus.

Rufus: Dean! Put that damn thing down.

Samuel comes around the corner and points his gun at Dean. Dean shifts his aim to Samuel.

Dean: You’re the least of my worries right now, Rufus.

Sam and Bobby come in, pointing their guns—Bobby at Rufus, Sam at Samuel.

Sam (in an instinctive cry of whoa, wait, let’s think about what we’re doing here): Hey! Hey! Hey!

Dean: I am not in the mood! I just had a 12 inch herpy (or did he say harpy?)  crawl out of my ear.

Sam: What?!

Dean (his face tense and a bit freaked out): I woke up on the ground in time to see a giant…Khan worm crawl out of my friggin’ ear and into a vent. You tell me what’s going on!

Samuel: You killed Gwen, that’s what’s going on.

Dean looks like someone scooped out his stomach with a dull spoon. His face pales, his eyes are devastated and he speaks like he can’t breathe. *puts hand to chest*

Dean: We were talking…out in the hallway. That’s the last thing I remember. That thing must’ve taken over me.

Everyone is still pointing their weapons, but Dean’s aim has drifted toward Rufus as he absorbs the fact that he killed someone without knowing it, without memory of it.

Bobby: A monster that gets in you?

Sam: Like a parasite?

Dean: Worm crawls in, worm crawls out.

Rufus: Monster possession? That’s novel.

Dean starts to lower the barrel of his gun, still looking as if he’s not able to get a breath.

Samuel: What if that thing is still in you and we can’t trust a word you’re saying?

Dean (straightening and pointing his gun—one handed {unf}—at Samuel with sure aim, his lips folded in tight against his teeth, his eyes dead serious): It’s not.

Bobby: Check your ears.

Dean: For what?

Rufus reaches for him and Dean flinches back. Sam immediately turns his gun on Rufus at Dean’s reaction. I loved that. The whole episode the guys were so in sync. It was…well…kinda awesome, actually.

Dean: Why don’t you buy me a drink first?

Rufus (sticking a finger in Dean’s ear): Second date. Goo positive.

So, they determine that the…thing…was indeed in him.

Samuel: Or it still is.

Dean: It’s not in me!

Bobby gets a bag from a nearby hook and tells everyone to give up their guns—which is met by predictable protest.

Bobby: We don’t know who is and who ain’t got the damn Khan worm up inside of him.

Dean: It’s not in me!

His voice has passed the edge of desperate and is now free-falling into you have to believe me.

Bobby: I didn’t say it was. Point is—we don’t know who it is. Let’s make it harder for that thing to blow our fool heads off.

So, while Dean’s expression is tense and worried, and Sam’s is uncertain and a little scared, they do what Bobby says. Samuel is the last holdout, but, eyeing Dean the whole time, he reluctantly puts his gun in there. Bobby stuffs the bag into a locker next to one with an “I Heart Polka” bumper sticker on it. I have no idea why that popped out at me. *laughs!*

Bobby says they need to take a breath and make a plan. He’s going to make some calls, which Rufus thinks is a good idea. So, while they shake a few trees, the boys and Samuel sit and stare stone-faced at each other. After a bit, Samuel stands up and Sam is on his feet in a flash. He steps forward either to get between Samuel and Dean or simply to stop Samuel from leaving. Either way, it was good to see him have his brother’s back in a visible, albeit subtle display.

Samuel claims he needs a bathroom break and leaves the room. Sam and Dean exchange a glance and an entire conversation takes place between them. Wordlessly, they follow him while Bobby and Rufus reluctantly admit they’ve each got bupkis. Rufus is like, “So what next?”

Bobby: We either sit on our hands, or we go in guns blazing.

Rufus: Like Omaha?

Bobby: Screw you for bringing up Omaha.

Bobby steps away, his face a strange mixture of anger and sadness.

Meanwhile, Samuel really did have to take a leak, apparently, and on his way out through the locker room, the boys stop him, one in front, one behind.

Dean: I wonder how you sleep at night.

Samuel: Like a baby. Thanks for asking.

Dean (lips pushed out in anger): You fed us to Crowley.

Samuel: True. What am I gonna do about it now? Do I blame you for wanting to kill me? No. What I did was…

He pauses, evidently unable to come up with a word for “completely effed up” that they’d allow on TV. Dean is keeping his face carefully still, though his eyes are bleeding hatred. Sam is standing behind Samuel listening to this whole exchange.

Samuel: I’m not apologizing. I did what I did. I don’t cry over spilled blood.

Oh what ever. If any of this speech was the real Samuel? He was so full of crap. The whole reason he claimed to be working with Crowley was to get his daughter back. And while we’re on that, I’m really curious how or if Show is going to circle back to his storyline and why he was brought out of Heaven. I mean, other than to totally screw with Dean’s head and give Sam someone to hunt with during that year he was away from Dean.

He was brought back to help Crowley find Purgatory and in exchange was promised he’d be given Mary alive again—only that went belly up for Crowley (as far as we know) and now after this episode…his whole reason for being there seems strangely pointless. Which I can’t believe is the case with our show—and I don’t put anything past them, so, therefore, I’m dying to know what the rest of the story is with Samuel.

I said it before and I’ll say it again—I think this season is going to be one I’ll only truly appreciate in retrospect. Each episode has had its nuggets of gold, and there have been threads woven through and ties made and broken and I’ve been engaged the whole time. But with only six episodes left, and no confirmation of a 7th season (ohpleaseohplease), I am sitting with a whole bunch of questions that I have faith our writers will find a satisfactory way of answering.

Somehow.

Anyway, back to the family confrontation in the locker room.

Sam: You really can just go on? Like….

Samuel (turning to face him): Just because you’re Dr. Jekyll at the moment, don’t get all high and mighty. We spent a year together.

Sam: Yeah. We did. We’re blood and you still sold me out.

Samuel: What I did pales in comparison to what you did. On more than one occasion.

I audibly gulped at that. My first thought was that he might tell Sam about something he’d done to Dean—like the vamp thing. My second thought was that maybe Sam had done worse than even we knew—worse than killing ‘innocents.’

Sam: Tell me what I did.

Dean moves like someone jabbed him with a live wire, circling around Samuel and stepping in between Samuel and Sam.

Dean: No. Sam, c’mon. (to Samuel) Only reason you’re alive is because we’re working a job. The minute we kill this thing? You’re next.

Part of me didn’t know if I really believed Dean would go through with it. Not only was Samuel Mary’s father, but he was a person. And Dean may think himself a killer, but he has his own thin red line between what is and is not acceptable. Killing this man in cold blood, for vengeance…it just didn’t feel like Dean. Still…he said it himself years ago. For John or Sam—for those he considers family—the things he’s willing to do or kill…scares him sometimes.

Samuel half-grins in a creepy, almost maniacal way and says, “Okay. We’ll see.”

As he turns, though, two things happen really fast: he reaches into his pocket for a stealth gun and Dean sees the black goo oozing out of his ear. Dean reacts instinctively, grabbing the gun hand and shoving it up toward the locker. The gun goes off and Samuel shoves Dean back into Sam and takes off. The boys recover their balance and head after him. They round the corner, see Bobby and Rufus—who’d run out when they heard the shot—and Dean simply yells, “Samuel!” before he and Sam take off again.

Rufus says he needs his gun and Bobby’s all, “Ya think?”

They break into the locker and grab the bag of weapons.

Rufus (to Bobby): Don’t feel bad. It was a good plan—except for the part where a monster would definitely not give up all of his weapons.

Bobby: Shut up.

*Laughs*

Sam and Dean burst in and grab their guns. They say they have to stick together, keep track of this thing and who it’s in. They start to search through the dark cannery, guns out, flashlights up, Dean in the lead. Suddenly, Sam grabs Dean and throws him back. Dean, Bobby, and Rufus are all wth and point their weapons at Sam who replies with his standard, ”Hey! Hey! Hey!”

He points to a trip wire that he’d seen just before Dean walked into it. In a rather comedic moment, all four hunters follow the wire with their lights, all with mouths open, all crouching and bending low as they look up, following the wire to a booby trap. Hee. They step over the wire and continue on—this time with Sam in the lead—until they reach one area where the light start to flicker.

Out of nowhere a door slides between them, cutting Sam off from the group.

Dean (voice gruff and edgy): Son of a bitch! SAM!

Sam: Dean! I’m going around, okay?

Dean: Watch yourself!

But…of course Sam runs into Samuel. Which was the point of that little trick: divide and conquer. Sam trains his gun on Samuel—who looks…off. His eyes are red-rimmed and he seems almost shaky.

Samuel: You’re not gonna shoot me—you got your soul back. You gonna shoot your own family?

Sam: Wouldn’t go with the family thing. Try again.

Sam’s gun is up, his face is set, but his eyes break my heart a little. He looks genuinely scared.

Samuel (advancing): Mary’s still my daughter.

Sam: I said don’t move.

Samuel (advancing more): You’re still named after me.

Sam: I said don’t move!

Samuel: This appears to be our moment, Sam. You still want to know about your summer vacation? I’ll tell you. You’re dying to know, huh?

Sam: Yeah. I am.

I was completely undecided at this point if I wanted Samuel to tell him anything—a wall-related seizure at this juncture would be Very Bad, but at the same time…part of me still wants Sam to know (despite Dean’s speech at the end).

Samuel (advancing again): Let’s just put these down and talk.

Sam: Stop!

Samuel (moving ever forward): It’s alright….

BAM! Bullet. In. The. Head.

Holy crap—I was literally stunned. Samuel was down. Dead and down.

Neither of them acted out of character as far as I could tell—I mean, Samuel had always been a bit mercurial in the ‘care’ department. He did save Dean and he did get all squishy over the baby shifter and he did act out of apparent (or at least spoken) care for getting his daughter back (or at least seeing her again) and he did look horrified in the flashbacks of Sam killing the spider victims and he did get all drunkenly sentimental about family while sitting on Roy’s couch with Sam.

But on the other hand he’d spent most of his time with Dean insulting him, he never stopped Sam from doing what he did, his hunter methods were more than questionable, he worked with a demon to the detriment of his own family, and the nail in the coffin—he tried to kill them both.

Sam never looked less than ‘our’ Sam to me—and he warned him to stop multiple times. There was never an instance where I thought he might be monster-possessed…right up until he pulled the trigger. I wasn’t sure how I felt about Sam being the one to kill Samuel at first. I kinda didn’t want it to be either of them—I didn’t want it to be construed as vengeance. Because while that would be a RoboSam move, it’s not one either of our boys would do (I think). However, the way they played it out, it wasn’t out of vengeance or cold blood—it was out of self preservation.

And…I kinda think it was poetic justice that it was Sam who did it. Looking down at the body of Samuel, Sam just looked…confused and sad and a little resigned.

Hearing the shot, Dean’s bellow of “SAM!” is audible from a distance. He says it again as the three of them come running up and then he skids to a shocked halt when he sees Samuel’s body. Bobby comes running up next and sees Sam and whispers a truly heartfelt, “Oh, thank God.”

I swear I got a smidge choked up at that—the complete relief in Bobby’s voice that Sam was okay. After going through so much with this kid since that day in Stull cemetery—keeping the painful secret of his return, struggling with him being soulless, nearly being killed by him, and having to work to accept him as Sam once again when he got his soul back—I was worried the connection would never come back.

But it did, and we heard it in those three words.

Then…Bobby and Rufus saw Samuel’s body. Bobby tells Sam to drop his gun; Sam crouches slowly and sets the gun down, saying that it’s really him. Rufus is like, yeah, okay, then you won’t mind if we cuff you until we find out for sure. Dean is still staring at Samuel, swallowing hard. Rufus puts a zip-tie on Sam’s wrists (behind his back). Sam insists that the monster thing is in Samuel. Bobby is like, are you sure? Rufus asks if he saw anything come out of him after he dropped. Sam’s like, um….

Dean is staring at Sam almost like he’s desperate to believe, but has been through so much—seen so many sides of his brother—he’s not really sure. Sam is staring back with an uber-earnest please believe me expression.

And…it was at this moment I knew that Bobby would kill Rufus. I wasn’t sure why, but Dean had taken a life while possessed, and Sam had taken a possessed life—to follow the pattern, and because I felt there was no way they would kill Bobby off at this point, I knew Bobby would kill his friend. Which just made me all that much more tense as I continued to watch.

They take Samuel’s body to…some other room and lay it on a table. They swab his ear—no goo. Sam looks devastated for a moment.

Sam: Are you saying he wasn’t a monster when I ganked him?

Guh.

Bobby looks apologetically up at Sam.

Rufus: One way to find out. Bobby, you got a cranial saw in your car?

Bobby: ‘course.

HAHAHAHA! Of course. HA! Who doesn’t? I have three! *laughs*

Dean: You’re not going alone.

Rufus: Oh, no. He won’t. We’ll go together, get some tools, get some power on in this place. (Turning to the boys) I want you and you…. (He frowns) I want you and you to watch him and him…. If anything crawls out of anybody, step on it.

Sam: Don’t worry. I’ll watch Samuel. Dean’ll watch me.

Rufus and Bobby leave and Sam starts circling the table, looking down at Samuel. Dean is at the foot of the table, hands in his jeans pockets (YUM), chin down, eyes up on Sam.

Dean: You did the right thing.

Sam: You mean you think I did. If it’s in him and I’m me…this thing’s playing Three Card Monte with us.

Dean: I’m just gonna assume you’re you.

Sam (indicating his bound arms): You wanna take this off then?

Dean: Not until we get that sucker out….

Sam (looking sad and very young): I can barely remember him and what I do remember, it’s not good. But….

Dean: There’s a ‘but’?

Sam (moving closer to Dean—and making me inexplicably nervous): I can’t help but think…what would mom say?

Dean sits with that a moment, then looks at his brother and his face is suddenly ageless. The tiny lines around his eyes seem to deepen while the rest of his face smoothes and his eyes are full and serious.

Dean: She’s say, just ‘cause you’re blood, doesn’t make you family. You gotta earn that.

I swear to you, my heart bounced off my toes at those words. Some of you know I have been going through some family trials with one of my sisters. In an exchange between us months ago—way back in September—that was my argument. You don’t carry around a ‘get out of jail free’ card just because you share DNA. The word ‘family’ isn’t synonymous with automatic atonement and forgiveness.

At least it isn’t for me. Not anymore. I have friends who are more my family than some of my blood relatives are family. Because they’ve earned it.

And to hear that from Dean lit me up inside a bit. Putting it in context with the moment, though, and the way he was looking at Sam, I think he was saying, You have…he didn’t. He was absolving Sam of any familial wrong-doing—no matter what they found inside Samuel’s noggin.

As he’s finished talking, the lights in the room come on and Bobby and Rufus return. Bobby tells the boys to take a breather. Dean’s all we’re good, but Bobby insists—seeing as how they’re about to cut into their grandfather’s grapefruit and all. The boys exchange a look and reluctantly head out of the room.

Rufus looks at the power cord of Bobby’s saw and teases him about dumpster diving—foreshadowing the fact that the frayed cord was going to come into play. Bobby, looking remorseful, stands on the opposite side of the table as Rufus plugs in the saw and says he needs to say something.

I will admit, I was anxious about Rufus and that saw. See how they played with my head?

Bobby: Omaha was my fault. I shoulda listened to you.

Rufus (half laughing): We’ve had this conversation.

Bobby: I never said I’m sorry. You lost her because of me.

Rufus (still laughing a little): I said we’ve had this conversation. (Dead serious) You can blab all day and it wouldn’t change a thing Bobby.

Bobby looks almost bereft.

Rufus: I will never forgive you for what happened. You got that? Never. So, change the subject.

Ouch. And…wow. Here’s an example of how it could have gone with Dean and Sam. Bobby and Rufus were partners. Trusted each other like brothers, it would seem. And Bobby made a mistake. And Rufus never forgave him. And they’ve been able to work together and give each other crap, but there’s a canyon between them that neither could ever cross or bridge.

Had Sam not apologized or had Dean not allowed it—had he not said immediately and often, “It wasn’t you,” they could have deteriorated into hunters who meet up when the fit hits the shan and nothing else. Instead, they’re back to having wordless conversations and watching each other’s backs. *whew*

Rufus begins to cut into Samuel’s forehead and suddenly Samuel’s EYES FREAKING OPEN!

He sits up and shoves both Rufus and Bobby away. He breaks the table and uses one of the legs to shove through the door as a lock. Outside, the boys hear the sound and turn to see Samuel standing, framed by the window. With twin wtf expressions, they gape as Rufus attacks Samuel, only to be thrown back again.

Dean cuts Sam loose from the make-shift cuffs and they go to work on the door. Bobby tries to grab Samuel and he gets thrown to the side. He grabs Samuel again and shoves him against the outlet with the frayed cored plugged in. Samuel gets electrocuted just as Dean is able to kick the door open. A totally disgusting, fat, black worm wriggles out of Samuel’s ear and slops onto the floor.

Dean goes to Rufus and Sam to Bobby and they help the older, rattled hunters to their feet. They try to figure out how Samuel got “double dead” and Dean tells them about seeing the worm—only now they don’t know who it’s in. Could be any of them. However, they do know that electricity “tickles” it. So, Sam rigs up a live wire plugged into the socket and one-by-one they allow themselves to get zapped.

Dean goes first, exposing his arm, tensing up, groaning low as the charge burns his arm.

Dean: Son of a…. Awesome.

Sam burns himself next, then leans on the post with one hand to catch his breath and his balance as Dean takes the wire and moves to Rufus. Rufus tries to call time out—revealing he has a pace maker—but Dean’s like, no outs. He burns Rufus’ arm while the hunter mutters, “dammit, dammit, dammit!”

It’s not in Rufus. So, Rufus takes the wire and moves for Bobby—who backs up. Bobby’s like, “It’s not in me, so go ahead.” Rufus counters with, “Then stop backing up, whatever you are.”

Bobby: I’m Bobby!

Rufus: Bobby my ass.

And without warning—not!Bobby stabs Rufus in the chest. I knew it was going to happen and I still gasped. It was just so—gah! Y’know? One of those, no, wait, maybe if I rewind it can un-happen! I was really very bummed that Rufus died. I get that they did it for story impact, and to complete the flow of the theme, but I wish there’d been another way. I’m tired of them losing people close to them. *is sad*

Sam cries out Bobby’s name and catches Rufus. Dean moves around to flank Bobby. Sam says that there are two of them and one of him and they’re able to grab Bobby and knock him out. They duct tape him to a chair and for the first time, the creepy thing inside of him takes over and speaks up. Until this moment, it seemed like the possessed people were basically themselves—with the exception that they’d gone buckets of crazy. They talked in their normal voice, knew the facts they should know, all of it.

But as Dean worked over the creature inside Bobby—zapping him once in awhile to keep it in line—it turned downright creepy.

Dean (bending over taped up Bobby): Hey there, you little herpy.

Sam (leaning against a table off to the side): Why do you keep talking about herpes? (See that’s why I thought he said ‘herpy’ and not ‘harpy’—but I can’t be sure.)

Dean (glancing at his brother, distracted and disturbed): What? I don’t. Shut up. (pause) Shut up.

Creepy!Bobby Monster Thing claims that they can’t kill it without killing Bobby, too, and it knows how much they love this guy. Dean wants to know what it is, but the thing says there’s no name for it—it’s new (chalk one up for Bobby, there). Apparently Eve made it herself. Then he goes all, “by the time she’s done with you there will be more creatures than humans and you’ll be living in cages and we’ll eat your young and blah blah blah.”

Sam: So what’s your deal in all of this?

Creepy!Bobby: She has a message for you. You’re all gonna die. She’s here and she’s pissed and there’s nothing but pain from here on out.

Dean’s like, here’s my response: ZAP.

Because, seriously. Does this Eve chick think words like that are really going to freak them out? They’ve dealt with Lucifer for crying out loud. They’ve been to Hell and seen atrocities people should never see. They’ve battled the first demon and the yellow-eyed-demon and juuuuuust about every monster Eve ever made. If she wanted to scare them, she chose the wrong tactic. All she did was cut into them by taking a friend and make them mad.

And a mad Winchester is a dangerous Winchester.

Sam stops Dean before he zaps Bobby too much and asks how much more he thinks Bobby can take. The monster is all, you can’t kill me without taking him with me. The boys look grim and exchange a look. Then, in another moment of wordless solidarity, Sam hands Dean a roll of duct tape and Dean tapes Bobby’s mouth and ears. He looks at Sam, who nods.

Dean: No way out, sluggo! Bobby! Hang on in there!

ZAAAAAAP!

Sam flinches and shakes and has to turn away. Bobby’s body is rocked with electricity. And Dean’s jaw muscle jumps and twitches—perhaps remembering the pain of having gone through this before—as he has to hurt his friend pretty badly to get the monster out. Black gunk oozes out of Bobby’s nose and ears and then he slumps forward, the spot on his neck charred black. A black wormy thing slithers out of his ear and hits the floor.

I actually said, step on it! to my TV.

Dean calls Bobby’s name. Sam pulls the tape from Bobby’s mouth and cradles his head, both bending close, calling Bobby’s name. Sam says, frantically, that he’s not breathing…and then we fade to black.

We return with both boys standing in the rain over a freshly buried grave in the middle of a cemetery looking grim. For one fraction of a second I was like, they wouldn’t dare, but then Bobby stepped up between them.

You mean Show, you.

Dean: Never figured Rufus for the religious type.

Bobby: He didn’t keep kosher. Pulled the old “can’t work on the Sabbath card” when we had to bury a body.

The boys each offer him a half smile. Bobby just looks beat down. Lost. Just about as lost as he did the second time he had to kill his wife. I wondered what they’d decided to do with Samuel and Gwen. Wondered if they burned them or buried them. But then Bobby started talking and I decided to let it go.

Bobby: Y’know…I was just a job. I was Joe Mechanic until my wife got possessed. I stabbed her but it didn’t do anything. Next thing I knew, this guy comes busting in, soaked her with Holy Water, sent that demon back to Hell. I woulda gone away for killing her, but Rufus cleaned up everything. Taught me a thing or two about what’s really out there. Pretty soon, we were riding together. Like you two knuckleheads.

And, guh. I hope this wasn’t a foreshadowing—Bobby and Rufus were like Sam and Dean…Bobby killed Rufus (though not of his own volition). That coupled with MoA being called Eve…a woman who gave birth to fated brothers, one killing the other…. I hope I’m reading too much into this and going off in a very wrong direction.

Sam: What happened?

Bobby: Omaha. It was my fault, and he never let it go.

Dean: Well, he should have.

He looked kinda beautiful—if a bad-ass hunter can look beautiful—in that moment. His face set, his eyes serious, standing in the rain next to his friend and his brother. (annnnd avi number two)

Bobby: You don’t know what I did, Dean.

Dean: Doesn’t matter. At the end of the day, you two were family. Life’s short. Ours shorter than most. What are we going to do? Spend it wringing our hands? Something’s gonna get us. Eventually. And when my guts get ripped out, just so you two know? We’re good. Blanket apology for all the crap that anyone’s pulled all around.

Wow. I mean…wow. Seriously.

Sam: Some of us pulled a lot of crap, Dean.

Dean (lips folded, one shake of the head): Well, clean slate.

I don’t know if it was in an effort to make Bobby feel better about something that had been out of his control, to forgive himself for killing Gwen, to absolve Sam for killing Samuel. I don’t know if it was because he realized that his hatred for Samuel and what he’d done to them was suddenly irrelevant in the grand scheme of monster possessions. I don’t know if it was because he needed to find a final way to tell Sam “it’s not your fault” and have his brother believe him.

Maybe he was just tired. Maybe he’d lost one too many friends. Maybe he felt that he’d cheated death one too many times recently and he wanted to meet his end—whenever it was—knowing that the two people who mattered most in the world knew that they were square with him. Maybe he just needed some forgiveness himself—of himself—and the only way he could get it was to give it.

Dean has shown an amazing capacity to forgive those he loves—from his father to his brother to Cas to Bobby. He never asks for it in return; rather he beats himself down, thinking he isn’t worthy of sitting at the Braeden’s dinner table, thinking he’s a killer…. But after all that had happened since they thwarted the Apocalypse, the moment he got his brother back, all was forgiven inside of him. Sam was back; that’s all that mattered.

And now he’s said it outright.

Part of me still wants more from Sam about that year. Either for him to find out (without the Wall of Sam tumbling down, if that’s possible) or for him to see the ramifications—like seeing Dean react to the sight of Samuel. I kinda think that Sam wants that, too. He needs to find his own forgiveness, his own atonement. Having a clean slate from his brother is nice and appreciated, but Sam’s tenacious and he has his own mind about things and I don’t think he’s going to be able to let this go.

But…this speech does help me wrap my head around their ability to put the fact that they killed people behind them for the sake of the hunt. And it also gives the writers a little more room to write about the many threads they still have blowing in the wind without having to focus so much on the emotional arc (though if they are the caliber of writers I believe them to be, they should be able to touch on both).

Bobby pours some Johnny Walker Black (I think, right?) on Rufus’ grave, looking close to tears. ETA: My bad! It's BLUE label. I don't know my Scotch. The boys walk quietly away as Bobby drinks a shot for his friend, allowing him a moment to say a quiet goodbye.

*rubs heart*

So, we won’t see them again until Tax Day (for those of us in the States). April 15th is a long wait. And those previews looked awesome set to that cool, clicky beat like the York Peppermint Patty commercials. It had to have been several episodes smushed together, but I know I glimpsed that Western a few of you mentioned to me. So. Pumped.

Thanks for reading and for sticking with me this season, riding the emotional tidal wave as we follow our heroes.

Slainte.


Tags: stream of consciousness
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