Episode Fifteen: Pyromania

By Grkgrl88

Part One

 

Sam stood outside in the cold night. He turned to face the back of a large house and saw orange and red flames scatter up to the second story.

“Ha, ha, ha!”

“Oh, yeah!”

Sam heard a group of guys laughing and carrying on. He spun around but didn’t see anyone. Then a girl screamed out of fear, out of pain. Sam looked back at the white house. He could see flames smoldering inside through the first floor window. He heard the scream again but couldn’t see anyone in the window. Maybe she was towards the front of the house. Maybe she was on the second floor.

“Help!”

This time Sam clearly heard the voice. It was close to him, and he was sure she was right inside the house.

“Help me, please!”

Sam felt the room grow warmer, but he didn’t wake. He rolled over in the bed instead. Then he began to cough and woke up to see bright orange light through the window. Eerie shapes of gold and orange danced on the motel room walls as smoke drifted through the air. “What’s going on—” he began to ask himself when he heard a noise. A loud sound entered the room, breaking, shattering, like the sound of smashing glass……..exploding glass.

Sam stood up and glanced at Dean, who was still asleep. Sam slipped on his shoes and walked to the door. He reached for the doorknob but hesitated. He could definitely feel heat coming through the door and tapped the doorknob twice, checking its temperature. It was warm but not too hot to touch, so Sam twisted and pulled the door open. A wave of heat rushed over him and into the room. Sam looked out at the blazing fire briefly and then brought his arm up across his face, shielding himself from the flames’ intensity. He heard screaming, a girl screaming, and moved his arm down to see if anyone was out there. Sam shook his head. It couldn’t be. “Jess?” He whispered the question, not able to summon her name louder.

Sam saw a large face in the flames, vague and undistinguished. Somehow, though, he knew it was Jessica. The screaming had grown quiet and now he heard a series of whispers.

“Why, Sam? What happened? Why?”

The face swirled away from him and back into the fire. Sam watched as it faded.

“Why, Sam?”

After Sam wiped a tear from his eye with the back of his sleeve, he saw a glowing mass in the distance coming towards him. The ball of fire spun faster and grew brighter as wind whipped around him. Sam slammed the door shut and turned back towards the room. “Dean!”

He ran to Dean’s bed and shook him. “Dean, get up!” Dean murmured and swatted the air with his hand. “Come on, wake up!” Sam shouted. He pulled the bed covers off of Dean, and again Dean swatted at the air.

“Just a couple more minutes, Sammy….”

Sam gasped as the wall cracked in front of him. “Dean!” Sam bent and covered Dean’s body with his own as the window shattered and the door burst open.

“Dean! Dean!” Sam twisted his body under the covers.

“Sam, I’m here.” Dean stood over Sam with a hand on his shoulder. “Sammy, it’s okay.”

Sam opened his eyes and gasped. He sat up in bed and looked at Dean.

“It’s okay,” Dean said. “You were having another nightmare.”

Sam scratched his head. “Nightmare?” He sighed.

Dean sat on the other bed and faced Sam. He bent forward with his elbows in his lap. “Dude, it better be good. You got me up at 3 a.m.”

Sam took a breath.

“Dream or vision?” Dean asked, concerned.

Sam thought for a moment. “Both, maybe. I sort of had a double dream. I saw a girl in a burning house and then I woke up in my dream. We were in a hotel room and there was a fire outside.”

“Wait, back up a minute. The girl in the burning house, was that a vision?”

Sam rubbed the back of his neck. “I don’t know. I mean, it didn’t feel like other visions I’ve had. I don’t think it’s something that’s going to happen soon. I think-” He glanced at Dean and then looked to the floor without finishing his sentence.

“What?” Dean asked.

“I-I think it’s something that already happened in the past.”

“You’re having visions of the past again?”

Sam shrugged. “I don’t know. I mean, it felt different. Real, but not like my other visions. I just have this feeling that it already happened.”

Dean shook his head. “Just tell me there weren’t any U-Boats or crazy sea captains.”

Sam chuckled. “No, none of that.” He narrowed his eyes. “A lot of fire, though.”

Dean looked up. “Well, we can deal with fire. What happened in the second part of your dream?”

“We were in a motel room-”

“This one?”

“No, I don’t know where it was. I woke up and there was a huge fire outside with explosions. I opened the door and saw……” Sam debated how much he should tell Dean. Skip Jess for now, he thought. “I saw a huge ball of fire coming towards me. I slammed the door shut and then tried to wake you up. Whatever was coming shattered the window and the door. That’s when I woke up.” Sam shrugged his shoulders.

“Hmm, so do you think that was a vision?”

Sam shook his head. “No, that was a dream, intense nightmare.”

“You’re sure?”

“Yeah.” Sam smirked a little. “And I really hope so, anyway. We were both about to die when I woke up.”

Dean grinned, shook his head, and continued, “Okay, so you had one possible vision and a dream. Both about fire.”

Sam nodded his head.

“You’ve been having nightmares about fire for the past two weeks,” Dean said.

“Yeah, I know.” Sam rubbed his forehead with his fingers.

Dean stood up and paced the room.

“What’s it mean?” Sam asked.

Dean paused in front of the window and crossed his arms over his chest. He looked out into the clear night. “I don’t know, Sam. Maybe nothing.”

Sam didn’t mention that Jess was in his dream, something that hadn’t happened in a few months. He didn’t describe how he felt when he saw the girl’s house on fire. He didn’t say anything about the feeling he woke up with daily for the last week, like something horrible was going to happen. Dean would say it was nothing to worry about. Horrible was a fact of their lives and they were always around bad things that happened. They were hunters, after all.

Dean’s cell phone rang, and he walked to the nightstand to check it. “Text message,” he told Sam.

“What’s it say?”

“Kurt Rogers.”

“Who’s that?” Sam asked.

“Don’t know. We’ll have to check it out in the morning. I need a few more hours to snooze first.”

~*~

Dean opened his eyes and heard clicking….typing. He glanced at the alarm clock, and it displayed 8:30 a.m. “Fair enough,” he said to himself. He sat up in bed and saw Sam sitting at the kitchenette table in front of his laptop. “How long have you been up?” Dean asked as he ran his hand over his head.

Sam glanced up at Dean and slightly shook his head.

“Never went back to sleep?”

“Nope.” Sam hit a few keys and then leaned down to read the screen.

Dean nodded. He stood up and walked towards the table. “What are you looking at? Find out anything about Kurt Rogers?”

Sam looked up. “Yeah. Twenty-five years old. He died in a fire last week.”

“Fire, hmm.” Dean leaned on Sam’s chair and read the obituary. “What caused it?” He moved his eyes down the screen.

Sam shook his head. “The police don’t know. It was only in his room.”

“Well, we should go check it out. Where’d he live?” Dean walked around the table and faced Sam.

Sam rubbed his eye with one hand. “Uh, Epsom, Indiana.”

Dean squinted his eyes and grinned. “Epsom? Like the salt?”

Sam smirked. “Yeah, but the town.”

“Nice name.” Dean reached across the table and picked up a map. “So how far is that from here?” He unfolded the map on the table, glanced at it, and looked over at Sam. “You already have it marked. Man, you really didn’t go to sleep.”

Sam furrowed his eyebrows. “No, I didn’t.” He closed his laptop and looked up at Dean. “It’ll take us about four hours to get there, so we should get going.”

~*~

Dean shifted his glance from the road for a moment. He looked over at Sam sleeping and sighed. Sam hadn’t been sleeping much at all in the past week, but Dean was glad his brother could sleep on the road. Sitting in the Impala wasn’t the most comfortable way to rest, but Sam seemed to prefer it.


Sam stood behind the white house again. Flames licked the building’s exterior as they turned orange and then brighter, red. He turned to see a young man, maybe of high school age, run towards the house. Sam jogged around to the front. The boy ran up the front steps and banged on the door. He knocked harder and shouted. “Emily! Emily, can you hear me?” He hit his fist against the door and leaned against it out of desperation. “Emily!”

Sam turned around as he heard sirens approaching. Fire trucks pushed into the front lawn and firemen jumped off, rushing to the back of the house with hoses.

“Emily! Emily!” The boy continued to shout the name, now nearly in tears. He banged on the door again and took a step back to look up at the house.

One of the firemen walked up to him and put a hand on his shoulder. “Come on, son,” the fireman said. “We need you to clear away from the house.”

The boy looked up at the fireman and then pointed at the front door. “But she’s in there! Someone needs to save her!”

The fireman turned the boy and faced him. “Okay, okay. We’ll get to her. Come on, off the porch.”

The boy wiped his hand across his nose and followed the fireman back to the truck. He still watched the house, the black smoke rising from the back. He shifted his weight from foot to foot and glanced at the firemen. All of them were towards the back of the house. He had a clear run to the front door, if he dared to take it. He looked at the door again, and his eyes darted once more to the other men. The boy shook his head, took a breath, and ran back up to the house. He kicked down the front door and jumped inside, moving his arm up to shield his eyes. “Emily!”


Sam jumped in his seat, and Dean glanced over. “Hey, you okay, Sammy?”

Sam looked out the window and over at Dean. He rubbed his eyes and sat up. “Yeah, another nightmare. Where are we?”

Dean pointed out the windshield to the right side of the road. “I was just about to wake you up.”

Sam read the sign, “Welcome to Epsom, Indiana.” He cleared his throat. “We should probably check out his house first, and maybe we can find someone who knew Kurt.”

Dean nodded. A few minutes later, they were downtown. Epsom was a relatively small city; definitely no bustling metropolis. He pulled along the sidewalk near a phone booth. Sam got out first, and Dean followed him.

Sam picked up a phone book and flipped through the white pages. “Rogers…..Rogers…..Kurt Rogers….” he said to himself as he scanned the names. “Here it is.” Sam held his index finger at the entry. “Apartment 3C, 275 East Folly Road…now, we just need to know where that is…..”

Dean turned around and looked up and down the street. It was late afternoon, and a few people walked outside. “Hmm. Any maps or directories in there?” He turned back to Sam.

Sam glanced up for a moment. “Yeah, already there.” He moved his finger along the map. “Okay, here’s Folly Road. We’re on…”

“Third Street.”

“Right.” Sam turned the book so Dean could see the map too. He moved his finger along the page as he spoke. “We have to go to the end of this block, make a right, go about a mile and a half, and make a left.”

Dean looked down the street. “Okay, that’s not far.”

Sam nodded. He closed the phonebook and placed it back on its shelf. Dean walked back towards the Impala and tossed his keys in the air on the way. He caught them and grinned. “Time to find out if there’s anything weird about Kurt.”

Less than ten minutes later, Dean slowed the Impala in front of the apartment complex. Dean parked the car and reached over Sam to get to the glove compartment. He opened it and grabbed two police badgers. He gave one to Sam and stepped out of the car. When Sam got out and closed the passenger door, Dean said, “Let’s see what’s happening in Epsom. After you, officer.”

Sam grinned and walked ahead to the apartment building. They walked up to 3C and Sam knocked on the door. Dean turned around briefly to look at the street.

A young woman answered with dark hair and eyes. “Hi, can I help you?” she asked from the half-opened door.

Sam nodded. “Hi, did Kurt Rogers live here?”

“Yes,” the woman replied slowly.

Dean turned to face her. “Ma’am, I’m Officer McCoy.” He nodded towards Sam. “And this is Officer Spock. We’d like to ask you a few questions about the accident.”

The woman wouldn’t open the door any farther. “I’ve already talked to the police about it.”

Sam nodded. “We know. We’re just doing a follow-up, checking facts. It’ll only take a few minutes.”

The woman hesitated but then fully opened the door and gestured for them to enter.

Dean stepped in first. After she closed the door behind them, Dean said, “Okay, so you’re…”

“Tracy Hamilton,” the woman replied. “Kurt’s girlfriend.”

Dean nodded. “How long were you together?”

“About five months.”

Sam walked around the apartment, checking the walls and ceilings. “Where were you during the fire?” He turned around to face Tracy.

“I was working the night shift at my job. I came home at about 3 a.m. and saw an ambulance and fire trucks outside. Then I found out that the fire was in our apartment—actually, just in the bedroom—and Kurt had died in it.”

“I’m sorry,” Sam said apologetically.

Tracy nodded. “Thank you.”

Sam stood in front of the bedroom door with police tape stretched across it. “You said the fire was only in the bedroom?”

Tracy took a step towards him. “Yeah, that’s what a firefighter told me. You can see there’s no damage outside the room.” She gestured to the rest of the apartment.

“Yeah,” Dean said, moving to face her again. “Do you know what caused it?”

“No.” Tracy shook her head. “They didn’t find a cause. I don’t know, it’s really weird.”

Sam nodded. “It’s hard to lose someone and not have all the answers.”

Tracy looked at him and sighed. “But that’s not even the weirdest part.”

“What do you mean?” Sam furrowed his eyebrows and tilted his head to one side.

“Kurt had dreams about fire for the past week, like, really intense dreams.”

Dean glanced at Sam, and when he made eye contact, Sam slightly shrugged his shoulders.

Tracy continued, “He’d wake up in the middle of the night and think he was on fire and that the room was burning.” She looked at Dean. “I’m sorry, this must sound crazy. But it’s true. He was creeping me out. It was like…” She looked at both of them now. “He knew what was coming.”

Dean nodded as he checked his watch. “Well, thank you for your time. My partner and I should be getting back to the station.”

Tracy stood up a little straighter. “You’re welcome. I should start getting ready for work anyway.”

Sam shot Dean a glance as they walked towards the door. He turned back to Tracy. “Again, sorry for your loss.”

She nodded as she closed the door behind them.


After Dean pulled out of the parking space, Sam sighed and looked out the window.

Dean stole a glance over at Sam. “What is it?”

Sam shook his head but didn’t move his gaze. “I just hate playing this game all the time. We go in for the facts and don’t pay any attention to the people. I mean, she just lost someone…”

Dean took a breath as he stopped at a traffic light. “Look, we can’t spend a lot of time with all the people we help. We come and fight off the bad thing and move on. That’s how it has to be.”

Sam breathed out through his nose and turned towards Dean. “I know. I just wish that sometimes we could do more…”

Dean focused on the road ahead of them. “Sometimes I do too, dude.”

~*~

After Sam and Dean checked into a hotel room, Dean lay on the bed and watched TV while Sam did more research on his laptop. Dean held the remote in his hand lazily as he flipped through the channels. He glanced over at Sam. “Find anything interesting?”

Sam didn’t move his eyes from the computer screen. “Well, Tracy mentioned that Kurt had dreams that he was on fire for the past week.”

“Yeah.” Dean shut off the TV and sat up on the bed.

“So I’ve been looking for any information on that, if anyone else has reported something similar.”

Dean squinted his eyes and scoffed. “That’s pretty random to research. Get anywhere?”

Sam clicked and then typed a few words on the laptop before looking up at Dean. “Yeah, actually. Plenty of people wake up in the middle of the night and think they’re on fire.”

“Really?” Dean stood up and walked next to Sam. Dean looked over Sam’s shoulder at the screen.

Sam sat back in his chair. “They’re called phantom fires, and the people really do feel like they’re burning. There have been reports from men, women, even kids sometimes.”

“Have any of them died in a fire a couple of days later?” Dean scratched the back of his neck as he continued reading the article.

Sam shook his head. “I haven’t found any. Most of them find out that the house they live in burnt down before, or someone that lived there before died in a fire. The dreams are sort of like a connection to someone else.”

“But Kurt’s situation is different.” Dean thought for a moment. “Well, I guess if someone went through the same thing as Kurt, they wouldn’t exactly be able to report it, would they?” Sam looked up at Dean, and Dean grinned. “They’d be dead.”

Sam grinned and shook his head. “Ha ha.” He closed the laptop. “What time is it?” He glanced up at Dean.

Dean nodded. “Oh, right, Tracy’s apartment.” He checked his watch. “Seven thirty. Yeah, we should get over there.”

 

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