Title: The Burning World
Pairing: Dean Winchester/Mara Daniels
Author’s Notes: Takes place sometime following the S2 finale. Written forzelost_mind through spn_summerlove.
Summary: It’s hurricane season, and the pressure is building.
Don’t you know that yet?—Sun Ra
Here’s the thing: there’s no innocence left in the world.
Or at least not in her clients. “Fuck it,” Mara mumbles before taking a long drag from her cigarette. She knows the law. And she knows innocence. But she has lost a few too many cases in the past few months, mostly due to the fact that her clients were all undeniably guilty. It’s like the world had decided to spew out a few extra violent criminals to run amok across the state. After three years clerking for a law firm in Houston and more than seven years working for the county’s Public Defenders Office, she thought she’d seen just about everything. But lately things have gotten worse. Something is in the air. And she doesn’t like it.
A moody blues winds from the nameless bar behind her and she finds herself caught in the melancholy grip of a guitar and a gravely voice. Fuck, she’s down tonight, but she blames the weather. She looks up—the slant of visible sky under the bar’s overhang had changed from indigo to grey to rain in the course of the hour. It’s hurricane season, so it’s been raining for 40 days and 40 nights with no end in sight. The storms have left the trees of the barren warehouse district naked and shattered by gale-force winds. They stand now, broken limbs dancing longingly in the dawning night. She shivers and huddles further under the overhang of the bar and taps the ash of her cigarette against the discolored brick wall.
Everything is drowned in a grey twilight. Although Little Rock is more rural backwater than cosmopolitan cityscape, she’s now in East Little Rock, and it’s across the tracks, literally. Its neighborhoods, a former industrial center long since expired, had been abandoned to the elements long ago. Bordered up ruins of housing projects and shot-gun clapboard houses sit slick under graffiti and disuse, an iconography of the city’s renowned poverty.
She had ducked into the bar, seeking warmth and a watered-down beer right after visiting a client’s family down on Markham Street. Her client this time was actually innocent, not that it did him any good. He was a 19-year-old kid named Pop who would likely get a decade behind bars for being the wrong color from the wrong side of town and in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Mara heaves a heavy sigh. She’s 33 years old and maybe her life’s her work. She’s jaded but believes she can make a difference; the juries see this and her clients appreciate her fervor. She’s too smart and too lonely, but she stays and plays the game the best way she knows how.
She clicks her heels on the cracked pavement in tune to the music. The cigarette smoke weaves from her nostrils and mixes in the wet haze. She knows she’s a mess: her grey and black pin-stripped suit is soaked through with rain; her white-collared shirt is glued to her abdomen; and her thick, dirty-blond hair is plastered across her forehead. But that didn’t stop the bar’s down-trodden dregs of the earth from eyeing her with not so clandestine intensions.
The bar is a slum—a one-room dilapidated shack. She is not too anxious to go back inside so she smokes her cigarette down to the filter and snubs it against the wall. She slides another cigarette from the pack, and fumbles around for her lighter. Just as she lights up, she hears a steady footfall across the rain-puddled pavement. There are no working streetlights so the wet darkness curls and dances around for a moment before she can make out a man moving slowly toward the bar.
He stops and stands in the middle of the flooded street in front of the bar. His face is turned to the heavens, and he just looks up as rain pelts down in a slanted sheet, coats his hair and face and jacket. He stands like that for long moments, the speckled light from the bar just barely illuminating his face.
Mara thinks maybe she’s dreaming. And it wouldn’t be the first time she’d dreamed about him. The shadows he leaves when he vacates are strong and long and heavy with something she cannot name.
“I’ll be god damned,” she swears, knowing she’s not mistaken, knowing he’s not a dream. She leans back against the wall, arms crossed, and watches him stand in the rain—his face to the sky, body still, his arms stretched at his sides.
He seems to notice she’s staring after a while, and he turns to stare back. He advances toward her with a bow-legged swagger and upbeat confidence until he’s standing under the overhang, wiping his face with the palm of his hand. “Hey,” he says, like they were old friends, like he wasn’t a federal fugitive. His grin is wide and deep.
She takes one long drag from her cigarette, breathes out forcibly, letting the smoke coil thickly and mix with the wet air to sting her eyes. She throws the cigarette into a puddle, watches it disappear under the dark water. “What are you doing back in Little Rock, Mr. Winchester?”
“Robbing another museum?” he suggests, his voice is slick and cocky, but there’s a genuine wariness to it.
She raises an eyebrow and chuckles low and deep. “Right.”
He’s close to her now, leaning back against the mottled brick of the wall beside her. He’s a rough study in mystery. She likes how his coy smirk widens, how his honeydew eyes—that have seen roads that she’ll never travel—peer into the brown depths of her own.
She looks away, blushing. “Find what you’re looking for?” she asks finally because she doesn’t know what else to say.
He shrugs, shakes his head and flicks water droplets from his collar. His flannel shirt is slick under his jacket, and it stretches over his abdomen as he leans closer. “Just passing through. But it’s been a long week and I gotta say it's sure good to see a friendly face in this town.”
“Are you sure this one’s so friendly?” she asks with a teasing lilt. “I’m still pretty sure you’re wanted in at least three states. And I already got into enough trouble when you rolled through last time.”
His eyes are intense and focused on her. “Not too much I hope.”
She laughs, a bit brokenly. “Special Agent Henricksen is a hard man to get off your ass once he finds himself attached to it. But I guess you would know that.” She chews at her bottom lip and shakes her head.
Dean and Sam Winchester were disasters waiting to happen, Mara remembers. Men with dangerous eyes and savior complexes. Their case is still the one that nags at her. She had never believed them cut-and-dry guilty of the many crimes they were accused of: mail fraud, credit card fraud, grave desecration, armed robbery, kidnappings, and three counts of first-degree murder.
We’re not the bad guys, Dean had told her once from behind the thick glass of the Green River County Detention Center. And he’d asked her to trust him. She had then. She still did.
The murder charges she knew to be false; there had been too many weird inconsistencies. But the other charges had elements of truth to them—she just didn’t like to think about why they traveled around the country digging up graves. She had her suspicious, especially after talking with the numerous witnesses who claimed the brothers saved their lives from things…indescribable. After she heard the stories, after she’d followed the trail of desecrations, after she looked into things a little too deeply, she’d had to stop her digging. She didn’t want to know.
Here’s the thing: she hates the dark. When she’s driving around at night, thinking about the stories she’s heard on the job, she looks out into the darkness and wonders what or who is out there, if what she fears is real. She can dismiss these thoughts in the warm light of the morning, but her heart knows something is out there. Just like her heart knows that Dean Winchester has faced it.
He was looking at her curiously now, probably trying to gage her thoughts. “You can trust me, you know,” he says in that earnest way she remembers.
She offers a small smile. “Well, if you turn out to be the monster the law says you are, I can just call up me best friend Henricksen for you. I do think he misses you.”
Dean smiles widely, eyes crinkling. A thin patina of rainwater glistens above his lip, which he licks generously. “I know he does.”
Thunder booms across the sky; lightening dances, illuminates them. “It feels like it’s been raining forever,” she murmurs. Even the days it didn’t rain, the sky rolled angry and gray and a silky mist sat heavy in the air, clinging to her hair and coating her skin.
“Maybe the world’s on fire and it can just use some rain,” he suggests, with a curl of his lips.
“Always so cryptic?” she mocks gently.
“Wait ‘til you get me drunk,” he replies. His small pink tongue licks at his lips again before he turns to stare into the bar and nods his head toward it. “Did I ever thank you for your help?”
She slants a look his way and then into the bar. “No, you didn’t.”
When he smiles back, it’s breathtaking.
They fuck in the one filthy restroom of the bar. It is so small they can barely fit themselves inside, so they press together tight. The flickering light bulb barely illuminates the peeling wallpaper, the mural of crude graffiti, the water stains on the molding ceiling. The smell is suffocating—sour beer, stale piss, and Glade air freshener. Dean kicks the toilet seat down before she can see what’s in it.
Mara should be disgusted, but she’s inhaling hard and deep as Dean peels off her suit jacket and pulls her flush against him. She can feel the lethargic pull of his ratty denims riding hard against her humid thighs. Then Dean’s picking her up and propping her up against the sink, sucking on her neck like it’s salvation. A hot wet breath to her check, lips to her ears, he whispers thank you in a voice too smoky and too raw. He raises his left hand to take her nipple between his thumb and forefinger, tugging and rolling and finally squeezing with a slow pressure until she whimpers and moans. “Oh fuck you,” she grits. She’s already sticky-wet and shaking from his voice.
His frantic hands pull at the hem of her skirt before he bunches it up between them. He pulls off her panties, and she raises one leg to wrap it around his hips as he slips the fingers of his right hand into the wetness pooled between her thighs. She trembles as his fingertips brush into the furrow of her core, massage along the dips and outer lips of her sex, and comb the velvety hair with his fingers.
He moves his other hand up to her face and cups her cheek. She parts her mouth and he runs his thumb across her lips, brushing along them for a slow moment until he slides his thumb inside her mouth. Mara salivates around the salt and alcohol-tang of his thumb; she works it eagerly.
In perfect coordination, the fingers of his right hand continue to move expertly, gliding into the soft fluidity of her cunt, stroking over her clit. He is meticulous, working one, then two, then three fingers in and out of her again and again. The silver ring on his right hand is cold against her heat, and she gasps and arches up as he slips under her velvet folds, invades deeper.
He laughs and kisses up the flesh of her neck and nibbles into the hollow of her collarbone as he finger-fucks her slow, long, and deep until she’s riding him with embarrassing abandon. Heat winds tight through her body, and when he removes his thumb, wrinkled now from her diligent work on it, he fills the vacancy of her mouth with his tongue. Their lips war and their first kiss is sloppy, alcohol-sweet, and brutal.
Dean grabs her waist with one hand and sends his other fingers even deeper inside her. She rolls her hips and hangs onto his shoulders; the muscles of her passage walls clutch and squeeze and clamp down as his fingers coax forth her arousal. She trembles through her orgasm, biting her lip until it’s numb. Gently, he pulls his fingers out of her and leans down to place his tongue against her cunt, lapping delicately at her juices, licking until she’s creaming again, mewing in a high-pitch, rhythmic cadence.
When he finishes, his wet mouth whispers dirty things to her as her shaky hands go to his waist, pulling at his belt and opening his fly. His cock is hot and heavy, and he hisses as it hits the air. He releases her to scramble for a condom, wrapping his length with a cool, precise expertise. She then takes the latex-covered cock in her hand and teases her slit with it, back and forth over her clit and then down to her opening. He takes over and guides the head into her soaked entrance. She’s dizzy and mumbling nonsense and thank yous and god I need this until all she can scream is fuck me and release a breath so hot it steams the small restroom.
They fuck hard, slamming into the bathroom door until it cracks. Dean’s hands are rough with calluses and need. His movements are hungry as he slip-slides in and out of her; her back scratches against the dingy door as she heaves up and down. But they fuck and she feels like she’s coming apart at the seams. Pressure spirals down into her gut, the hot-thrill of everything she knows, but can’t understand. And when she comes again it feels a little like dying, grappling fiercely with Dean’s heavy body and heavy essence. Then she’s just breathing and breathing some more, flooding like the Arkansas River running its banks in the hurricane.
Mara sees Dean again two days later when he shows up at her apartment needing to be punished. When he enters her home, the pulsing heat of him spreads out and fills everything around him. He relaxes on her couch, sipping at the sweating bottle of the cheap beer she’d had in her fridge. He’s sore and bruised and a line of scars winds up his chin, fresh cuts she doesn't ask about.
There’s something disarming in his charm, in his slow, easy grin. Something telling in the scar above his eye and the medical tape that holds it together. But there is also the sad tilt to his swagger, a story she cannot understand. Dean doesn’t talk much as he sits, even as she tries to coax him into speech, tries to read his story through his quiet affirmations and off-handed quips and jokes. She can tell he’s clinging to something, running on adrenaline, on the hunt.
“Why’d you come to see me?” she asks, curious, but not disappointed. She lights a cigarette and leans back to watch him.
Dean has a distant look in his eyes as he relaxes back against the sofa. “Just thinking. Maybe some day I’ll need you to get my brother out of trouble with the law,” he says simply, taking a long sip and draining his beer. The bottle hits the table with a loud resonance through the room.
“Doesn’t he have you for that?” she teases. It’s the middle of the night and she’s only in a thin t-shirt and boxers, something that Dean appreciates.
“Maybe I won’t be around forever,” he quips, all nonchalant, all shadow-hidden eyes.
Mara nods. The energy around Dean winds tight, laced with fear and something else. She takes a long drag on her cigarette, leans over, and taps the ash into the ceramic dish on her coffee table. “I want you to tell me something true, Mr. Winchester.”
“True?” Dean queries with a laugh. His forehead creases, eyelashes tremble over his cheek as he blinks long and slow, puts his head back to rest on the sofa cushion. “Maybe the world’s at war. Maybe the end’s already come,” he grins, although there is no laughter in his voice.
“Not some esoteric pronouncement. Something about you,” she whispers gently. “Why are you so guilty?”
Dean huffs a laugh. “Maybe I just need to be punished. Maybe I broke laws that should never have been broken,” he mumbles so low it’s a whisper.
“And you need me to get you off?” she asks curiously.
He looks at her, and the teasing in his eyes sparkle with cocky pleasure. She then realizes what she just asked and chuckles loudly, sinking deeper into her couch.
Dean comes closer just as she takes a slow drag from her cigarette. She puffs out just as he leans in for a kiss. She pushes the smoke into his mouth and he rolls it around with his tongue before letting it escape between them. He then pulls her close, releases a harsh rumbling yes, ma’am into her ear before pressing his lips gently against hers. Mara sucks his plump lips into her mouth and strokes their length with her tongue.
Understanding that he needs something more from her tonight, she pulls away and stands up. Dean has eyes that peer into a person, but when she looks into them all she sees are other worlds and a weary darkness. He is weighty and looking at him causes her to shiver with the knowledge that whatever he faces is something she can’t understand. She wishes she could understand; she wishes she could help.
“I got something for you,” she says. She stands up and pulls him toward her bedroom. “Take your clothes off,” she orders, hot and smooth, as she motions him inside her room.
He looks at her in surprise, but begins to undress. She leans back against her cherry-wood armoire, watching him for a long moment. He slips off his frayed jeans to reveal muscular legs; he pulls off his worn gray t-shirt to reveal a lean torso. When he’s finished he clasps his hands behind his head and lies back on the bed, elbows up, cocky grin in place. His skin is bathed in the soft yellow light of her room, but she can see his cock red and curling toward his stomach, his chest a patchwork of fading bruises and healing scars.
“Wait here,” she smiles. He raises a brow as she turns and heads into her bathroom. She takes out a box from the bottom of her cabinet. The box contains a toy she had only used a couple of times before. It had been a gag gift from one of the other female attorneys at the county courthouse; she and the girls often joked that they needed a dick to keep up with the good ol’ boys of Arkansas. And so they got their own.
She undresses quickly and dons the leather harness of her strap-on. She connects the four smooth straps until they are snug around her waist and thigh. The dildo hangs secure and heavy between her legs. But she laughs at the weight. No wonder men are so preoccupied with their equipment, she smiles. She looks at herself in the full-length mirror, enjoying the power play of the strap-on. She is curvy and broad, with full breasts, and what her mother calls child-bearing hips. The harness looks nice curved around those hips now and the dildo glows violet in the bathroom light.
Lastly, she grabs her bottle of KY jelly from the medicine cabinet, and as she returns to the living room she gently lubes up the prosthetic, enjoying the feel of its grooves and ridges under her fingertips.
“Shit,” Dean breathes upon seeing her. “That’s fucking kinky.” He’s almost blushing and his mouth is slightly agape as he takes in her long naked form and the harness attached to it. She dances her hips as she approaches and the dildo bounces teasingly. She curves the fingers of one hand along its length, while rubbing the other hand over the erect nipples of her breasts.
“Do this often?” he breathes, eyes big, startled, and a little amused.
She sucks her bottom lip into her mouth, feeling momentarily embarrassed. “Just get on the bed, Winchester and assume the position.”
Dean laughs and hesitates for a moment, before he circles to the edge of the bed. He bends forward on his knees, his hands gripping into her soft blue comforter. Mara directs his body until he is hunched over completely, ass in the air just the way she wants him. She walks around the bed and smiles appreciatively. She then lets her fingers glide along his back, before she kneels over him and places a soft kiss to a crooked scar crossing the ridge of his spine.
She stands back one more time and surveys the territory of his ass, smoothing her hand down the back of his thighs, before she brings down one hand in a stinging smack over his left buttcheek. He jumps and her hand clutches and slides over the sensitive skin. “How’s that?” she asks softly.
“Fuck,” he moans and arches back, breath rattling hard. “Harder.”
She slides her hands over the round orbs again and slaps hard until his singing body vibrates under her touch. Her hand begins to sting as she slaps his ass again several times and scratches her nails across the tender flesh. He twitches and sucks in a deep breath, begging for more. She repeats her action until he is red and puckered and trembling underneath her, marked by her.
She bends and licks up the perfect curve of his spine, before placing two small kisses to his swollen buttcheeks. Her fingers roll down the sides of his hips, as she gently whispers, “Tell me what you want now, Dean. Want me to fuck you?”
He’s just hot skin and bruised and burnished soul, begging her please. “Baby, I’m already so fucked. Just do it.”
She backs away and slicks a generous amount of lube between her fingers. She gently dips into the wetness of his buttcrack and massages his tight hole with lube until he twitches. She gingerly pushes one index finger inside him, stretching him. He breathes hard and moans, pushing back until the finger is buried completely in him. She eases another finger and scissors, before sliding a third inside him, working him and flexing and probing deeper and deeper until he groans and trembles.
“Oh, that’s the spot,” she smiles, massaging his prostate as he writhes and pushes back. She worries that her nails are too long, but he just shoves his hips back and up so she can finger-fuck deeper into his hole. “Fuck, come on,” he growls and she moves faster until she feels he’s been stretched wide enough.
She pulls out and pushes his knees farther apart. She moves closer, enjoying the way the strap-on skims the round pale globes of his perfect ass. He bucks back into her touch as she thrusts her hips forward to nudge the head of the dildo toward the entrance to his hole.
She lines up and positions herself perfectly, curling forward to wrap herself around the lean curve of his hips until the man is cocooned underneath her. Her breasts press into his slick back as she slowly eases into the dildo inside him. He shudders around her as she sinks deeper.
“Come on,” he hisses, face grinding into the comforter.
Mara fists a hand in his hair, forcing his head back toward her. She breathes hoarsely against his ear, asking, “Want it harder? Want it to burn?”
“Fuck…just please…” he groans and pushes back, spreading even wider. She can tell he wants the pressure and the pain, needs it to get off. She releases his hair and uses both hands to grip his hipbones, fingertips dancing in the sweat beading along his taut skin, along his rough scars that map his life. She rocks deeper into him, breathes and thrusts forward, opening him up wide. She bends lower and reaches for his nipple, rolling it between his fingers and squeezing hard. He groans and bucks back even more, his own weight fucking him further onto the dildo as she continues to push forward.
The pace of Mara’s thrusts come faster and more aggressive as she gains comfort with the device, and the answering sounds from Dean’s throat are guttural, raw, and primal. The rhythm is perfected when she feels her own core rub and vibrate with the workings of the harness, the strap grinding hard and fast against her clit.
Mara presses a hand against Dean’s ribs and works her way down toward his cock, so hard and full and dripping. She rubs her fingers down the shaft, and he pumps into her hand in time with her own thrusting hips. He bites his lip and throws his head back, moaning and writhing into her as she hits his prostrate. She fucks him with intensity then, fire and life, hand jerking off his silk-slick cock, dildo pumping up his ass, until he’s thrashing and quaking underneath her.
She fucks him because he’s seen nowhere and darkness and the things she knows exists but refuses to name aloud. She fucks him because she knows he needs to feel something real inside him.
And he breaks for her like he’s breaking for the world, and he screams when he comes, splattering her blue comforter with waves of semen. She follows in a burst of light, and she ripples against the curve of his spine.
Tension rolls off the both of them like tidal waves; they’re empty and sated and undone. They’re breathing too loud, and the moment is everything that it is: the friction and the heat and the sweat-salt and the musk of come that burns the air that consumes the oxygen that announces that there’s life here.
Dean leaves like he came, a walking dream with his face lifted into a stormy sky, a figure melting under the spirited rain that tempers the burning world. Dreams always end like this.
The shadows in his absence grow long. The dark of Mara's apartment feels fuller. But she doesn’t hate the dark as much anymore. Because even though there’s no innocence left in the world, she’s glad the world has Dean Winchester.