Notes: Written for the 2007 Gundam Wing Legends. Archive only by GWL and myself. Matango is a real film, info about it is here.
Disclaimer: Oh, I so don't own these boys -- if I did, they'd be on pay-per-view!
Summary: A haunted drive-in, a bunch of shitake mushrooms and a freak snow storm, how bad can the weekend possibly be?
Sam is quite amazed that it's Dean questioning a hunt -- all things considered, his big brother is usually of the fight first, questions second school of action -- but right now, Dean is staring at him as if Sam's just offered him a plate of shit for dinner.
"There's a haunted drive-in," Sam says again, "they say the spirit of the old projectionist comes out each night and plays the same horror movie, over and over and over, from closing to dawn."
"Huh." Dean mulls this over. "Where is it?"
"New York State," Sam supplies, handing over the notes he's taken. "It's on Google News."
Dean raises an eyebrow. He might be techno-illiterate, but something called 'Google News' having articles about hauntings strikes him as a little weird. "You don't say."
"I've got news alerts for weird news," Sam carries on obliviously, "it makes things a bit easier than doing a general news search."
"Huh," Dean says again, because after all, what is there to say to that? Not a whole damn lot, really. "So, where are we going, Sammy?"
They get to the drive-in just before midnight. The place is deserted, but a movie is playing on the screen. Dean just stares at it, and then looks at his brother. "Dude, are those mushrooms? Is this a horror film about giant, freakin' 'shrooms?"
"Yes, Dean," Sam says in that tone of voice that Dean privately refers to as Sam's smart-ass intellectual voice. "It's Matango, a film from 1963, made by Ishiro Honda, who..."
"Oh, man," Dean is grinning gleefully, "I love him! He made that Godzilla film and that awesome King Kong one. He's like, a master!" Off Sam's look, "You've gotta get out more, Sammy."
"I'll pass, thanks." Sam wrinkles his nose. "Let's just take care of this and go."
"Okay, but I wanna watch the movie when we're done."
An hour later, one grave desecrated, one skeleton salted and burned, and Dean is relaxing in the driver's seat of the Impala, happily watching Mantango as Sam steadfastly refuses to look up and instead reads off his laptop, grumbling to himself about batteries and how they'd better not fucking run out. Dean is happy as can be -- an easy hunt, the projectionist was buried behind the old projection booth and a bit of breaking and entering and he's got the film to play in a private screening for him and Sam. Not that Sam's paying attention, and that, Dean thinks, is a crying shame. After all, this is an Ishiro Honda film, a masterpiece!
"Shit," Sam mutters as the battery of his laptop finally dies, meaning he has to watch the rest of the film or fall asleep, and given how loud Dean has the stereo up to hear the shrieking horror of Japanese B-Grade movie stars and the chomping noises of humanoid fungi, that last option isn't going to be happening. He resigns himself to watching the rest of the film with his brother, occasionally watching Dean instead of the screen.
His brother has less than a year left, Sam thinks, and if watching some crap film about giant, murdering mushrooms is going to make him happy, well...he'll put up with it.
"That was awesome," Dean crows as they drive out of the drive-in and head towards the highway. "Easy hunt, entertainment, no problem!"
"Yeah, Dean, sure," Sam says unenthusiastically. Truth is, nowadays, easy hunts are rare, and he always feels as if there'll be something more, that nothing can ever be easy for them. He's just finished letting that thought run through his mind when it begins to snow.
"Shit," Dean swears, windscreen wipers turning on as he slows the Impala so he doesn't end up driving off the road. "Where'd this storm come from?"
Sam doesn't have an answer for that, except perhaps that the universe hates him or the Trickster is having a laugh at their expense, because there are snow storms and then there are...
"This is insane, Dean," Sam shouts over the sound of winds that are driving snow with a force that rocks the Impala. "We need to stop somewhere!"
"I know, I know!" Dean spies a convenience store and a motel, pulls into the parking lot. "You get food, I'll get a room."
The snow is coming down even heavier than before now, piling up against the buildings and in drains, and Sam takes a deep breath as he gets out of the car and bolts for the store. Inside, teeth chattering and snow in his hair, he smiles at the sales clerk who calls a greeting then starts talking about the weather. Seems this is the time for heavy snow storms in this part of the state, some freakish thing that has to do with global warming and climate change and Al Gore is totally right.
Sam doesn't pay much attention to the voice of the clerk as it follows him around the store. He buys basic supplies -- rock salt, water, medical necessities, and then food. Junk food for Dean, and a six pack of beer, and as he passes the produce, Sam stops and decides, fuck it. Watching that movie has given him a craving for mushrooms and here are some fucking awesome Shiitakes. He feels his mouth begin to water as he ducks into the produce section and grabs up a large bag, then a few other items, preparing to make himself the world's sloppiest Shiitake stir fry. Dean has his comfort food, Sam has his.
Sam knows Dean will deny it later, when he's sitting down and eating Cheetos like they're going out of production and watching Sam cooking. "Sure you don't want some, bro?" Sam grins as he cooks the Shiitakes with garlic, a dash of oyster sauce and tosses in baby corn and chicken pieces.
"No, 'm good. Don't know why you eat that shit, Sammy, can't be good for you," Dean retorts and turns on the TV. The reception is bad, given the weather, and he watches a news report that's coloured with static, sound dropping out every other minute, but it's clear that these sorts of freak snow storms last for several hours and then when the temperature lowers overnight, freeze up. The newscaster recommends that people just wait it out like they do every year, that those who are brave enough (or stupid enough) to go trick-or-treating remember that some people might not be able to get their doors open because of the snow, and then the late movie starts.
Sam's just dished up his stir-fry on top of a steaming pile of noodles when he hears Dean's whoop of glee. As Sam joins his brother on the tiny lounge -- it's so small it's not even a love seat and fitting together on it is rather like a human jigsaw -- he groans.
"Dude, again? What's with the fucking mushroom film?"
"It's awesome is what it is," Dean answers, turning up the volume on the TV as mushrooms start appearing on the screen. "You're missing a fucking classic, Sam. You oughta watch and learn!"
"Yeah, right, Dean." Sam looks mournfully at his laptop which needs to charge up and rules out surfing the internet while eating. After all, if reception is this bad, there could be a power cut at any moment.
It's while the giant mushrooms are eating the horrified humans and Sam's taking great pleasure out of gnawing on his own giant mushrooms, that the lights go out. Dean swears and stumbles around, kicking furniture and swearing loudly and repeatedly until he's got some candles lit.
"This is fucked," he announces, dropping back onto the tiny sofa.
"It's the season for it," Sam deadpans as he polishes off his mushroom stir fry.
"Yeah, and no power, college boy, means this room is gonna get real cold, real fast. It's fucking Halloween, it's not supposed to be this fucking cold!"
In the candle light, Dean's skin is golden and Sam idly wonders what his brother would taste like. Instead of giving into the urge to lean in and lick up Dean's neck to his earlobe and nibble, Sam says, "Well, we'll just have to keep warm until the power comes back and the snow melts. Didn't the news report say it would be a couple of days?"
"Yeah." Dean scowls. After a moment, "It's cold, Sam."
"You are such a girl," Sam sighs, wrapping his arms around his brother and holding him close.
Dean kisses him then, tasting like Cheerios and beer and Sam sighs softly into his brother's mouth, threading fingers through Dean's short hair. He feels cold everywhere they're not touching, and in the back of his mind, he can still hear the screams of terrified Japanese tourists as they're eaten by homicidal, cannibalistic mushrooms. He tries to block the sounds out, groans miserably when he can't.
"Dude," he grumbles to his brother as Dean leans back and snags one of the comforters off the bed, "that movie is going to give me nightmares."
"Aw, what's the matter, Sammy, gonna have bad dreams 'bout killer fungi?" Dean wraps the comforter about them both, creating a warm cocoon. "Don't worry, I'll keep the bad mushrooms away, stop them from feasting on your lily white ass."
"You're such a dick," Sam grumbles, but he snuggles close and purrs as Dean gently strokes his back.
"Shut up," Dean says without any heat.
They're silent for a while, listening to the sound of each other's breathing and slowly, Sam falls asleep.
He dreams of a world shrouded in white, snow at least three feet deep, and being trapped in small buildings with no way out. He dreams of giant plants -- not just mushrooms -- coming to eat people, selecting their prey as Sam had selected his food in the convenience store. He whimpers softly as the killer vegetables break into houses and offices, shops and banks, eating, eating, eating. What they don't eat, they transform into more vegetables, and Sam twitches in his brother's arms as the dream plays itself out. He watches as he and Dean shoot the damn things and that they just keep on coming. He feels like he's in a strange, vegetative version of The Omega Man with Dean as Charlton Heston, and then he wakes up.
"What the hell!" Sam groans, tries to stretch, but he and Dean are wedged together -- and uncomfortably -- on the lounge. "Dean!"
"Not taking Sammy," Dean mutters, "not letting you make him a mushroom, you fugly bastards!"
"Dean," Sam repeats, shaking his brother, and after a moment, Dean comes awake.
"Shit," Dean says and Sam groans, resting his forehead against his brother's shoulder.
"We had the same nightmare," Sam points out as Dean disentangles them from the lounge which, Dean swears, is trying to eat them.
"Yeah, well, if we dream about furniture trying to eat us, we're camping out."
Sam can't help but laugh as he joins his brother in the nearest bed, both of them shivering as warm skin connects with cool sheets. They reach for each other, arms around each other, as much for warmth as out of need of each other, and they're silent for a while as the last of the candles slowly dies down and finally plunges the room into darkness.
"Go to sleep," Dean murmurs, gently brushing a kiss over his brother's lips. "There'll be no killer mushrooms in the morning."
"We're not watching B-Grade horror flicks on Halloween ever again," Sam sighs.
Dean laughs. "That's no fun, Sammy."
"Hmph." Sam doesn't argue that nightmares about being eaten by things that should, by rights, be his dinner and therefore in his stomach, isn't fun at all. Instead, he listens to the even beating of Dean's heart, letting it lull him back to sleep. A weekend of being snowed in with Dean and nowhere to go and nothing to do could be very, very good.
But he's making sure to break the TV aerial before his brother wakes up.