The New Neighbor

Jul 09, 2014 13:50

Title: The New Neighbor

Category: Supernatural

Characters: OFC, Dean Winchester

Rating: G

Pairings: none

Summary: In small towns like Lebanon people talk and my little grocery store was the center of the town's gossip. And Dean was the most exciting thing that had happened here in years.

Disclaimer: Not mine, I'm just playing with other people's toys.

The New Neighbor

The first time he entered my store he seemed lost. And to be honest, he looked out of place. Well-worn layers of clothes, biker boots, he could have been a farmhand of some sort, something to do with hard labor and low wages. Or a soldier, back from wherever but not quite here yet.

He wasn't from around here, that much I knew. Lebanon is a small place, here literally everybody knows everybody, and I didn't recognize his face. Trust me, I would have recognized that face.

If I'd been twenty years younger I would have flirted the hell out of him. And maybe I had a little flirty smile ready along with the road map when he stepped far enough into the store to let the door close behind him. I was closer to sixty then twenty but I was still alive and that smile, somewhere between shy, embarrassed and shit eating, made me weak in the knees, just a little bit.

"Looking for the interstate?" I asked because that was the only reason an outsider like him found his way into my store. Even the local young folk didn't come here, they rather drove to the bigger places with their Wal-Marts and Starbucks and all that. Where they could get everything the whole year and didn't have to worry about seasons. Call me cynical but show me one person under forty who actual knows that vegetables grow seasonally.

"No." He rubbed the back of his head and had a look at the door as if he feared getting caught doing something he shouldn't do. "Actually …"

He stepped closer, his eyes roaming the shelves. "I'm looking for lettuce? And some cucumbers?"

That was unexpected. He looked like the kind of guy who would only eat a piece of lettuce if it accidentally found its way on a burger. And if he didn't notice it in time.

"Over there." I pointed in the direction of the fruits and vegetables area, small but well sorted, but when I saw him standing there like he didn't have a clue what he was doing, I took pity on him. Call it mother instinct or whatever.

"Sammy likes salad." He said without looking at me. "So I thought …"

He was the only customer at the moment so I had the time to show him the basics. To my surprise he soaked every word from me up like a sponge. With big eyes he listened to me while I explained the difference between iceberg and corn lettuce. We kind of went from there to the cucumbers and from there to tomatoes and peppers.

In the end he had a dreamy smile on his face like he'd just discovered a wonderful new world and he bought way more than the lettuce and cucumbers he'd actually came in for.

With a bright "Thank you" he left and I thought that was it. I didn't expect to see him again.

He was back the next week. And twice the week after that. I'm not saying I was disappointed when he didn't show up the third week but every time the bell above the door rang I looked up and expected to see him. He was back the fourth week, though.

By then I knew his name was Dean and he called me Margret and he wasn't just passing through. He'd mentioned somebody named Sammy once or twice but other than that he stayed a mystery.

In small towns like Lebanon people talk and my little grocery store was the center of the town's gossip. And Dean was the most exciting thing that had happened here in years.

Karl, who ran the gas station with the little garage on the side, was the only other person who saw Dean on a regular basis. Usually Dean came in for gas but one time he needed something for his car and they ended up talking.

Knows his way around cars, Karl knew to tell. Drives this Chevy Impala, mint condition.

I don't know much about cars but the way Karl was talking, Dean had impressed him. And even I have to say, the car was a beauty. Hard to miss, too. Everybody had seen the car in town.

"The other day, I saw him." Francine had paid for her things but didn't show any attention to take them home just yet so I knew she had something to tell. "This Dean guy in that car of his."

She nodded as if that by itself was offensive and I just rolled my eyes, to Francine the sun shining was offensive, old nagging hag, but then she leaned in to me as if she was about to tell me a secret.

"And he wasn't alone." She made a dramatic pause. "There was somebody in the passenger seat. A man."

When I failed to gasp in surprise she glared at me.

"A tall man with hair like a girl. Looked like a hippie." She made a disapproving sound through the nose. "Or a terrorist." To her those two where interchangeable. "I'm telling you, Margret, this Dean means trouble. Why isn't the police doing something about this? I should talk to Benjamin, maybe he can do something."

I just nodded to that and wondered if I should give our poor officer in charge a warning call. Meanwhile Francine kept speculating about Dean and the other man. Partners in crime, family, lovers? Whatever they were it had to be something bad in her eyes.

I listened because there was no point in trying to stop her now, she would just raise her voice and rant over everything I said.

"There were times you could walk down the street in the middle of the night and feel safe." She sighed theatrically. "It's a miracle he hasn't robbed you by now. Aren't you afraid? I would be terrified if I was alone with somebody like that. Don't you watch TV?"

Having enough of her babbling I pushed the bag with her groceries closer to her.

"So far Dean has been nothing but kind and polite." I gave her a stern look, letting her know that I didn't consider all of my customers as polite. "He's a paying customer and I've no reason to think bad of him."

"Paying customer." She huffed but took her bag and turned to leave. "Wonder where that money's coming from. Where does he work? Where does he live for that matter?"

I had no answers to those questions, nobody had. He didn't work or live in town, that much was fact.

Still muttering under her breath Francine finally left my store, leaving me with those questions running through my head.

The next time I saw Dean, I just asked.

"We live a little outside of town." Was his answer without elaborating where exactly or who we was. And then he quickly changed the topic.

"Which apple would you recommend for apple pie?" He picked a random one up and weighted it in his hand.

Taken by surprise by the question I only blinked at him in confusion. Which brought that shy grin back I'd seen on him the first time he came in.

"I found this recipe on the internet …" He broke off and rubbed the back of his head, clearly waiting for me to laugh at that idea.

I shook my head in amusement. "Okay, two things."

I took the apple out of his hand and put it back. "First, you want a sourly apple for baking, a firm one that doesn't turn to mush while it is in the oven."

"That makes sense." He nodded and that bright light in his eyes was back. "And the other thing?"

"You don't risk something like pie on a recipe you found on the internet. What's wrong with you young people?" I gave him a playful slap on the shoulder and he laughed. An open, carefree laugh that instantly took off ten years off him. The contrast made me realize how worn and tired he usually looked, now I noticed how young he actually was.

"You need something proved and tested. Ask your mother or your grandmother, trust me, the old family recipes, nothing better." For a second I was lost in memories, I could almost taste the pie Grandma used to make.

It took me a moment to notice the awkward silence. He fiddled with an apple, desperately not looking in my direction.

"Oh, dear." My hand found its way to his shoulder again, this time in the clumsy attempt to comfort him. I didn't know anything about his family but there was no mother or grandmother anymore, that much was clear.

"It's just me and Sammy now." He said, his voice a hoarse whisper while he blinked a little too often. "Guess the internet recipe has to do."

He gave me a smile but it was fragile at best. And it did nothing to cover the hurt showing in his eyes. Suddenly he was just a lost boy.

"Nonsense." I gave him another pat and hurried back to the counter where I took out a pen and my notepad. "My grandma, God bless her, was famous for her apple pie. It was delicious and that's a fact." I started writing while he slowly made his way over to me.

"You're giving me your family recipe?" He asked, disbelieve clearly in his voice. I bet he wasn't used to people just being nice to him.

When I was done I ripped the piece of paper from the pad and hold it up.

"This is my grandma's apple pie." I locked eyes with him. "How do you young folk say? Don't fuck it up."

With that his smile was back, bright and honest. "Yes, ma'am."

I watched him leaving and could only shake my head. How could people like Francine worry about him?

He was back the other day, a box in hand.

"It was a hard battle but I saved one slice for you." He placed the box on the counter and even through the cardboard I could smell the apples and the cinnamon. "Never thought I'd have to battle Sam over pie." He shook his head in amusement.

"Okay, I have to ask. Who is Sam?" There was a plastic fork in the box as well and I didn't even need his encouraging nod to pick it up. "Is he your son?" The way he spoke of him it for sure sounded that way.

Now he chuckled. "Try pain in the ass little brother."

"He doesn't happen to have rather long hair, does he?" Francine's hippie/terrorist came to mind.

"That's him." He confirmed. "People are already talking about us?"

"It's a small town." I shrugged.

He nodded to that but then remembered the pie sitting between us. "Are you going to try it or not?"

"The youth nowadays, no patience at all." I muttered but took a bite. I closed my eyes when the taste unfolded on my tongue.

"Is it good?" He asked nervously.

"Just like Grandma's." And it was. I had made this pie a hundred times myself and I have to say it always turned out delicious but I never got it quite right. There had always been something missing. I couldn't put my finger on it but this pie was exactly how it should be, how I remembered it from when I'd been a little girl.

"Awesome." He beamed at me.

That was when I stopped listening when people like Francine gossiped about Dean and his brother. I don't care where they live or what they do for a living.

Dean is a good customer and by now a friend and from time to time he brings me childhood memories in form of apple pie.

Part Two
My Stories

season 8, outsider pov, original characters, dean winchester, bunker, one-shot

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