WHO: Sam Winchester & Lucifer ; narrative, unless Ruby wants to hop in? WHAT: Time for a chat. WHEN: Middle of the night. WHERE: Inside of Sam's head, which is currently resting in Greece. RATING: PG-13.
Greece was a beautiful, warm country. It was the perfect place to get away from the rest of the world - to hide in a sense of peace, quiet, and happiness that Sam knew he and Ruby would never be able to find in Lawrence, where the burden of the apocalypse and constant danger never ceased to weigh on their shoulders. They had spent days wandering the islands, touring the ruins of various historical sites, visiting the best of the best restaurants, sampling all kinds of different foods, and even lounging along the shores of the crystal clear waters of whichever beaches their hotel rooms inevitably ended up sharing ground with. Sam had never known anything like it. Like this. His life had been filled with running, fighting, running, fighting, training, running, fighting, more training, preparing, etc. and so on, right to the very brim without fail in the slightest. Even Stanford had been something dark, pretending to play in the gleam of a bright light that had never really been there at all. A false escape, because as Sam walked through the halls of his prized school, he had always known that there was something out there waiting to tear it all away. Being here, with Ruby, was very much the same - but so different at the same time. They both knew that something could happen. They both knew that, in an instant, they would have to rush straight back to Lawrence, because the city was always in danger. Yet at the same time, they were able to somehow carry that knowledge, while enjoying the getaway. They were playing it safe. They never stayed in one place too long, they always checked the boards to make sure that hell wasn't breaking loose in Lawrence, and they kept close watch on the people that surrounded them. To most, that sort of behavior really wouldn't have been considered as calm and relaxed at all. But for people like Sam and Ruby, who were more than used to having to look over their shoulders, doing so was natural. They thought nothing of it, while still managing to enjoy one another, along with their new environment.
The day that had passed hadn't been long enough. Hours spent laughing on the beach, a romantic dinner under the stars - and now, so suddenly, they were here. Curled in bed, warm body pressed against warm body; Ruby was wrapped against his side, the sheets tangled beneath her arms snaking around Sam's middle and draping off the side of the bed easily. His own larger arms were wrapped tightly around Ruby's middle, chin resting just above her head, as if to keep her safe and close. Their motel room, large and luxurious, thanks to the money they were given from a very generous (as reluctant as Sam was to admit it) party who had attended their wedding, was currently dark and shadowed. The only thing that stood out in the black were the white curtains attached to the large glass doors that led out to their balcony, which were quietly blowing against the warm breeze, as Sam had decided to leave the doors open for the sake of the weather. Greece could get pretty hot during the day. After spending hours running around on a heated beach, feeling the cool breeze at this hour was entirely relaxing. Especially when Sam knew that there was a Devil's Trap perfectly drawn on the ceiling above the open doors, preventing anything demonic from climbing in and attacking them while they were asleep.
As much of a comfort as that, the breeze, and the woman in his arms happened to be, Sam found himself struggling to fall asleep that night. He was resting, mostly. Holding Ruby. Letting her relax, while he went over vague, seemingly important ideas in his head. It was only when Ruby began to stir in his arms that Sam snapped out of his train of thought, quickly noting that Ruby, too, was very much awake.
"You should be sleeping," she said, turning toward him.
Sam squeezed his arms around her gently, head bowing just enough so that he was able to press his lips to her forehead. "I could say the same to you," he whispered against her skin, a soft smile easily finding his lips.
"I was thinking," Ruby told him, "about what you said the other night. About us staying here forever. Never coming back." Ruby put her hand to his cheek and Sam instantly leaned into her touch. It warm. Soft. It was the kind of gesture that was so gentle that Sam couldn't help but feel that warmth run through him to the core. It made him feel loved.
Sam rolled his eyes in amusement, his own fingers lightly trailing her back. "Oh, yeah? Taking it into serious consideration, are you?" It was only a brief mention. Sam had been teasing Dean on the boards a little about his frustration on how long their honeymoon had been, but he hadn't really seriously considered living in Greece forever. The idea was nice. It was the kind of thing that Sam would have loved to do, if he didn't have to worry about the apocalypse and protecting his family all the time. But he did. They had responsibilities back home and they had to follow through on them, no matter how great all of this had been. Eventually, their honeymoon was going to have to end. They both knew it, which was probably why they were trying to make it last for as long as they possibly could. Just a few more days, they'd keep saying. Just a few more. Before the apocalypse came rushing back onto their shoulders again. Before the responsibilities took hold, and all of this got turned into a warm memory that they'd never be able to visit again, if the angels and demons had things their way.
"Actually, I am," Ruby commented, "I think we should stay here, Sam. You and me, the beaches, the sun - this." She ran her fingers through his hair and smiled at him fondly. "I don't want to go back. And neither do you. So why should we?"
Sam probably would have laughed it off, if not for the serious tone of her voice paired with that genuine look in her eyes. She was serious. Ruby was actually being serious. She wanted them to stay. Sam pulled his arms out from around her and sat up against his pillow, brows knitting together in concern. Sweeping his hand through his hair, Sam squinted off at Ruby in the dark and frowned. "Are you...serious? We can't just not go back, there's too much at stake. I mean, maybe we could come back and visit if things go our way, but -"
"- but nothing. You and I both know that we're never coming back here once we leave." Ruby sat up, too, sitting up straight so that she'd at least match Sam's height a little. "We should stay. We could live like this for the rest of our lives, baby. No apocalypses, no more deaths, no more worrying about Dean, Adam, and your parents. Just us. The rest of the world doesn't have to matter anymore, not while we're here."
Sam released a breath of disbelief, then he leaned away from her and shook his head. "No. C'mon. We can't just leave everyone. If we don't get back, they could die or get possessed or - or Dean might even up and say yes to Michael, and that's not something I'm just gonna sit around and let happen. It's not something either of us should sit around and let happen. We can't just hang around here and pretend that the rest of the world might die, Ruby, it's not fair."
"But what if we could? What if, somehow, everything else really didn't exist? We wouldn't have to think about them or the apocalypse. We'd just be happy. And free - free to live our lives out all the way, without anything or anyone stopping us. Don't you want that, Sam?" Ruby was pressing the subject a lot harder than Sam had expected for her to. In fact, if Sam didn't know any better, he'd think that Ruby was drunk or digging into that side of herself that Ruby had long since put away. He understood where she was coming from, of course - how could he not? The idea of being able to live a free life, far away from all of the pain and responsibility and worry, it was beyond tempting - but Sam didn't want that for either of them. To just give up on everything that they loved, to throw it all away because it was too hard. It wasn't them. And it certainly wasn't like the Ruby that Sam had gotten married to.
"No," Sam said sternly, "no." He tossed his sheets aside, shot Ruby a look that was torn between peeved and downright worried, and climbed out of bed. Something was wrong. Ruby was acting...off. Fortunately for Sam (or possibly not so much, considering the alternative), he didn't have to wait long to figure out exactly what that was. As he turned back to face his wife, he found that she had vanished and that a man was sitting on the bed in her exact place. He was dressed in a blue jacket, paired off with a pair of jeans - nothing special; in fact, Sam would've probably seen any average Joe on the streets wearing the exact same thing, easy - and his features were slightly worn, as if they had once belonged to a man who had been around the block more than a couple times. Yet, the way they were carried. Calmly. As if they belonged to someone who had not a worry in the whole world. That sense of calm, paired off with the normal look of the man probably shouldn't have come off as eerie, but somehow it managed to do the job. Sam was up and across the room, half searching for his gun and half searching for his clothes (which was entirely unnecessary, because as soon as the man had appeared Sam had somehow become fully dressed) in a panic.
When Sam found that his gun wasn't in the drawer where he'd left it, he was quick to realize that he was dressed. He probably should have figured that something was off right then, but he instead turned to snarl at the man furiously. "Where is she?"
The man, in turn, smiled. "In bed. Right beside you, where you left her."
Sam hesitated. "What are you saying? That I'm asleep right now? Is this a dream?"
The man didn't answer. He stood up and clasped his hands together, but held his ground where he stood. Sam didn't know if it was because he didn't want to risk Sam attacking him or if it was because he was hoping to avoid putting Sam in even more of a frantic state, but he wasn't moving any closer, which - in his opinion - was probably a good thing.
"Who are you?" Sam pressed, growing more and more irritated.
The man's smile grew. "Lucifer. But you already knew that, didn't you, Sam?" The conflicted look on Sam's face was response enough. He had begun to suspect the man of being an angel, but he hadn't been entirely sure. Now he was, for what little that counted. "You understand my proposal, don't you? I could create a world for you and Ruby. A temporary one. It will last you both an entire lifetime and, once it is over, you will agree to become my vessel."
Standing rooted firmly to the opposite end of the room, Sam found that he didn't know what bothered him the most: the fact that he was unbelievably terrified of the creature standing before him, that the very creature in question had invaded his dreams in the first place, or that Lucifer himself had chosen to pretend to be his wife as to get a point across to him. To tempt him. The Devil was tempting him, in hopes of getting Sam to agree to become his vessel. Sam shook his head and backed away even more, shoulders quick to hit the wall behind him. "No. No way. Forget about it. I'm not saying yes to you."
Lucifer shot Sam an endearing look. Sam had expected the opposite. A threat, a glare, something dirty and devious, like every other villain in the book tended to throw his way when they didn't get what they wanted. Lucifer was exactly the opposite and, right then, Sam realized that the cool, calm gaze of his piercing blue eyes was scaring him more than any expected death threat ever could. "You will. Personally, I would rather you get something out of it. It was you who set me free. You deserve to be rewarded. What better way than to live out a full, human life with the one that you love?"
"You don't think that's possible if I don't accept your offer?" Sam replied, the venom in his voice hard to miss. "You don't think we can stop you? Because we will. We'll all stop you. And when that's over, Ruby and I are going to live a nice, long, happy life together - with the rest of my family, too - and there's not a damn thing that's going to be waiting for me when it ends, least of all you."
Still nothing. No anger. Worry. Nothing. Instead, Lucifer shot Sam a sympathetic look. "You can't stop me, Sam. You can try, certainly, but your attempts will be wasted. If you value your family as much as you do, I think you should focus your attention on spending as much time with them as you can. Because, while you may not be willing to say yes to me today, or tomorrow, or maybe even the next day - eventually, you will. I know you will, Sam. I've seen it."
"I'd rather die," Sam seethed, "hell, I'd put a bullet in my brain before I agreed to anything you had to say to me."
"And I'd just bring you right on back. See how this works?" Sam opened his mouth to protest, but Lucifer was quick to beat him to the punch. "I'm sorry, Sam. I know this can't be easy for you. But, you and I, we were always destined for this. That's just the way that it has to be. I have all the time in the world. You, on the other hand -" Lucifer paused, then smiled. "- take some time to consider my offer. Because in the end, no matter how many times you protest?"
Everything suddenly felt colder and darker. Lucifer's stare remained calm, yet everything about the man suddenly seemed a thousand times more intimidating, especially as he finished off his statement with an extremely final and definitive, "You will say yes to me."
Once he woke, Sam was quick to check on Ruby. He kissed her cheek, he ran his hands over her arms, and he quietly stared at her for what felt like hours before he felt convinced that she wasn't about to be swapped out with the Devil himself. When he was sure, Sam pulled the sheets up over Ruby's arms, as to ensure that she was warm, before he climbed out of their bed and uneasily made his way to the bathroom. Turning the water on, Sam set his hands against the sink (only then did he realize that they were shaking) and looked over to the mirror at his own reflection.
This was the face that Lucifer wanted to wear. His face. He seemed dead set on it - like nothing in the world was going to keep him from taking Sam as his vessel, not even Sam's own free will. Sam wanted to believe, so badly, that he'd be able to defy him. That he'd keep saying no, no matter what Lucifer did to him. But between the certainty that Lucifer carried when he had visited and the future that they had all seen before...
Sam scooped up some of the water and splashed it across his face, hoping that it would calm him. It didn't.