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SPN: Hoofbeats of Yesteryear - Not a rock, I'm just Ruth
All Me, no apologies
just_ruth
just_ruth
SPN: Hoofbeats of Yesteryear
Title: Hoofbeats of Yesteryear
Author: Just Ruth
Characters: Sam, Dean, Andrea Barr, Lucas Barr, Original characters
Rating: PG-13
Disclaimers: Supernatural is the property of Eric Kripe and the CW. Characters/Situations are being borrowed for entertainment purposes only. You think anyone would pay me for this?
Summary: for and for chemm80
Andrea Barr came to her friend's ranch for a little peace after Lake Manitoc. Lucas' strange drawing and sudden disappearance have her calling the Winchesters for help.
Word count: 5, 429
Special thanks to: nativestar
********

THEN:

The two men approached the three cedar trees that protected the grave. The white marble of the headstone seemed to glow in the shreds of moonlight that peeked through the clouds. Branches shifted in the breeze, illuminating a line of carved text: Non Timebo Mala. The younger of the pair, his dark hair hanging in leather wrapped braids down the back of a traditional deerskin shirt with porcupine quill embroidery, lit a thick cylinder of mixed green tobacco and sage from a glowing coal in a small clay pot. Chanting softly, he circled the grave, wafting the fragrant smoke into the air. He held it up to the sky and the four winds before tamping it out on the grave mound.

"Now, Daniel," he said, returning to the second man. They picked up the shovels they'd brought with them.

"Sure this is all right?" asked Daniel Elkins.

"Your dream vision was true, old friend of my grandfather's," said the other. He nodded. Daniel turned.

A silent figure on a white horse watched from a nearby rise.

"He approves."


NOW:

"It's been awful dry lately." Suggested the fire chief, mopping his brow with a handkerchief as he watched his men reel in their hoses.

"Not this dry." Sheriff Antonio Silverheels frowned. He shook his head as he looked over the burned-out equipment shed. Not everyone in the Potawatomi tribe had approved of the Fire Lake Grand Casino expanding or of the Hartman Construction Company doing the expansion, but he thought he knew his tribesmen well enough to know they wouldn't sabotage the project. He didn't want to be wrong, but this was more than coincidence "This is the third fire in as many weeks. It's got to be arson."

"The FBI in Oklahoma City won't step in unless you have more proof." Said the fire chief.

"I know." The Sheriff clenched his fists in frustration. "I know."

One of his deputies came up. "Mr. Hartman called. He wants to speak to you as soon as possible."

The Sheriff nodded acknowledgement.

********
Hoofbeats thundered in the night. The red-haired boy slipped from his bed. The white horse reared in the moonlight before galloping behind the barn. Dressing quickly, the boy did what he knew his hero would do; he followed it.

*****

It was a small diner just over the Texas state line and the Winchester brothers had just ordered breakfast. Dean was still subdued after the grim business in Greenwood Mississippi. They had only been able to save one victim from the hellhounds and the demon had taunted Dean mercilessly about their father's death and his torments in hell.

The waitress had just brought more coffee when Dean's phone rang. "Yeah. This is Dean. Hey! Andrea! It's been a long time." It was the first time in days Sam had seen him really smile.

"Andrea?" Sam straightened in the booth. "Andrea Barr?" Andrea Barr had been a widow they'd met in Wisconsin the year before while trying to stop an angry spirit from drowning people.

"What?" Dean stopped smiling. "Andrea, slow down. Where are you? Ok, we're not that far from Oklahoma." He made a scribbling motion on the table and Sam passed over a pen. "Right. When did he go missing?" Dean scrawled on the place mat.

"Who?" Sam mouthed.

"Lucas!" Dean hissed back, one hand over the receiver. Lucas was Andrea's son. "Andrea, don't worry. We'll be there as soon as we can."

The waitress arrived with their breakfasts. Sam stood up. "I'm sorry, we're going to need those to go. . ."

"Andrea, really, don't worry. We're coming." Dean closed his phone. "Hurry up!" He called as he ran for their car.

Sam apologized to the waitress, gave her a generous tip and grabbed the bags.

"What's happened?" Sam demanded as they roared off.

"Andrea took Lucas to her friend's place to give him a break after her Dad's funeral. Friend's husband is the local sheriff." Dean explained grimly. "She stayed on because she got a job in the office at a local construction company. Last month, Lucas started drawing pictures of a cowboy on a horse. He told Andrea he heard hoofbeats at night. Last night, he must have gone looking for that cowboy. Damn it!" Dean slapped the wheel. "Why would he do that?"

"Because you would." Sam said quietly.

"Fuck." Dean's jaw clenched. The Impala's speed increased significantly. Six and a half hours later they were pulling off the paved road and up a long driveway into the "Silverheels Ranch" just south of Shawnee, Oklahoma.

The light was slanting towards late evening. The parking area before the main house was filled with pick-ups and official vehicles from the State Police, Sheriff and local police. Men in and out of uniform, clearly organized into search parties, trudged wearily towards the house. A group of tracking dogs barked and whined unhappily. Dean didn't pay any attention to them. He ran for the main house with Sam at his back.

"Hold it!" A lean, copper-skinned man in a sheriff's uniform moved to block them. "Who are you?"

"Dean Winchester, that's my brother, Sam." Dean snapped. "Who the hell are you?"

"Sheriff Antonio Silverheels." He retorted.

"Dean! Sam!" Andrea, as dark-haired and pretty as ever, came running out of the house. "I'm so glad you're here."

Dean caught her in a brief hug and passed her to Sam, who also gave her a quick embrace.

"What's happened?" he demanded.

"Andrea, I told you, this is a job for professionals." Broke in the Sheriff.

"And I told you Lucas knows these men; they won't frighten him." Andrea flared.

"We're starting the search parties again at daybreak." He frowned at the Winchesters. "You're welcome to take a couple of horses and come along."

"Thanks so much, Sheriff. We'll be sure and do that." Dean drawled. The Sheriff glared at Dean a moment before turning and getting back to work.

"Andrea, you said Lucas had drawn a cowboy?" Sam asked as they followed Andrea into the ranch house. The main living area was a chaos of moved furniture, borrowed tables, spread maps and people talking on either cell phones or walkie-talkies. Andrea pulled them to a breakfast nook off the kitchen where it was quieter. She handed over a sketch pad.

Over a year ago, in Wisconsin, Lucas had been rendered mute after witnessing the drowning of his father by an angry spirit. The spirit had been the ghost of a bullied child who had died in the lake when a prank went too far. Sam later speculated that the ghost channeled through Lucas as a way of bullying the boy as he'd been bullied. Lucas had drawn pictures that led the Winchesters to solving the mystery – but the ghost exacted a last revenge from Andrea's father; drowning him instead of Lucas.

Sam flipped the pages. Most seemed the drawings of an average six year old, except for the last few pages. There were several shadowy pictures in pencil and crayon of a man riding a white horse that had a sophistication beyond Lucas's years. The last drawing showed a grove of three trees around a gravestone; again, it was too well drawn for a child's crayon.

Sam tapped the page. "Do you know where this gravesite is?"

"No." Andrea swiped at her eyes. Dean got out of his chair and hovered behind her.

Dean frowned over the first drawings. "And he's the one Lucas said he heard riding around?" He asked.

"That's what I'm guessing," Andrea nodded. "It's not over, is it?" She looked like she was going to cry. "He's being haunted again – isn't he?"

Dean couldn't meet her eyes. "I don't know." He finally said. He gripped her shoulders.

"Maybe we should look for this gravesite first; may I take this?" Sam coaxed the page from the sketchbook. Andrea stood up with him.

"We'll find him." Dean promised.

Outside, a group of local women had set up a massive pot luck dinner. Andrea introduced them to her friend, Teresa and they were encouraged to eat. They had just gotten plates when shouting broke out.

"They were trespassing on tribal land!" shouted a young man at the Sheriff.

"They were helping to search for a missing child." The Sheriff snapped back. "A search I notice you did not join, David."

The younger man colored. "I had business with the elders."

"I see a good many of the elders here, also helping in the search. And Mr. Hartman, who you keep speaking against brought every single man from his construction site to help as well."

"Damn it, Tony!" David shouted. "They are saying the Ranger has been seen! You are supposed to be the great shaman! Can't you see our ancestors are angry at this further violation of our land?"

"The Ranger defended the people of this territory during his life. I have no doubt he defends the people of this territory even now." The Sheriff stated flatly. "Go home, David. If you really want to be helpful, you can ride with us tomorrow." The young man snarled something in another language and stormed off.

"Who's the hot head?" Dean asked.

Teresa shook her head. "My husband's younger brother."

Sam looked after David, frowning slightly.

"What?" Dean poked him.

"I'm not sure." Sam turned back.

"Well, get some of that potato salad, it's fantastic." Dean meandered through the crowd. All the men whose conversations he wandered through were sincerely worried about finding Lucas. They couldn't imagine where the boy could have gone. There were a few mentions of the mysterious "Ranger" but Dean quickly noticed that none of the Native Americans were the ones mentioning him. Most of the talk from both sides centered around the mysterious fires that had been happening on the construction site over the last three weeks. Wonder if that was when Lucas started drawing those pictures?

An expensive car pulled into the driveway and a blond man in a suit came out of it to head straight for Andrea. Dean caught the name "Mr. Hartman" from a pair of construction workers and felt his hackles bristle at the intimate body language he was using as he stood with Andrea. Dean scowled and turned away. It wasn't that he had any claim on Andrea, just something about Hartman set his teeth on edge. He ditched his plate and went in search of Sam.

He found his brother surrounded by most of the older woman of the tribe, all of whom seemed to be pushing food at him. Sam was trying to be polite and clearly starting to panic. Dean stood back and laughed for a few moments before heading in to his rescue.

"Your brother is too skinny!" One of the women told him as he pulled Sam from their maternal grasp.

"Comes with the territory." Dean grinned at her. "You sly dog." He teased Sam. "All those ladies."

"Bite me." Sam grumped.

"Come on, Casanova; we're saddling up and moving out."

A short time later, Sam was saddling a sleepy-eyed mare named Sugar who was mostly white with a few spots of brown. Dean found himself also with a mare, rather obviously named Red.

"Geez, Dean," Sam boosted himself up on Sugar. "I haven't been on a horse since the last summer we spent at Pastor Jim's." He patted her neck.

"Ah, there's nothing to it." Dean grinned. "Just a bicycle with four legs."

Red promptly snorted all over his shirt front.

"I don't think she liked the comparison, Dean."

"Horses don't think." Dean snapped. He went to swing up and found himself hopping in a circle as Red switched her hips, keeping him off balance.

Sam caught Red's bridle. "Whoa! Whoa, there. Good girl."

"Bitch." Dean muttered. Red flattened her ears and snorted again.

The two of them angled off from the barn in the deepening twilight, keeping out of sight from the search party's picnic. The trees in this area were fewer and scrubby. A small herd of red and white beef cattle around a feeding station watched them. Sam pulled out the drawing and looked at it. Sugar yawned.

"See it?' Dean asked.

Sam shook his head. "I'm not sure in the dark – hey! Who's that?"

A figure on a white horse watched them from a distance.

"One of the Sheriff's search team?" Dean shaded his eyes. "No, none of them were on a white horse."

"That other picture Lucas drew! Is that who David called The Ranger?"

"Come on! Hee-yaw!" Dean pushed Red to a gallop.

The figure was gone by the time they reached where they thought they had seen it, but cradled between two small rises were three scrubby pines.

"That's it!" Sam pointed. Dean turned Red. Less than a hundred yards from the tiny grove, Red baulked. Sugar also stopped and refused to go any further.

"That's not a good sign." Dean commented as he dismounted. With a whinny, the horses whirled and ran off together. It was no good shouting and swearing, although they did plenty of both. The brothers were on foot. They went back to the gravesite.

Sam pulled a flask and a rosary from his jacket pockets while Dean cocked the pistol he pulled from the small of his back. They advanced slowly. The white marble headstone was almost hidden in the shadows of the pines. Sam pulled a couple of needles from the trees and sniffed them.

"Cedar." He reported. "Several tribes use it to ward off evil spirits."

Dean replaced his pistol and pulled a pen light from his pocket. He knelt to brush dust and dead needles from the stone. "Reid." He said aloud. He brushed below it. Non Timebo Mala looked like it had been inked into the stone. He scraped at the carved lines with a fingernail and examined it.

"Sam, this is crayon!"

"Lucas had to have been here." Sam went to one knee next to him. "I will fear no evil." He translated. "What's that beneath it?" He uncovered a five-pointed star within a circle. "Dean!"

"The Colt." Dean said grimly. In 1835, gunsmith Samuel Colt made a remarkable hand gun. Silver bullets fired from its revolving cylinder were reported to be able to kill anything. Anything. It was known by the inscription on its barrel: Non Timebo Mala and by the carving on its grip: a five pointed star within a circle. The weapon had come briefly into the possession of the Winchesters after the death of Vampire Hunter Daniel Elkins. They had seen the gun kill a centuries old vampire and a lesser demon. They had seen it put a greater demon to flight and had hoped to use it to end their quest to kill the demon that had attacked their family twenty-three years ago.

The Colt was gone – traded by John Winchester along with his life and, as they had recently confirmed, his soul, to save his eldest son.

"Think this Reid guy had the Colt before Elkins?" Dean rubbed his jaw.

"Could be." Sam frowned. "But is he the Ranger? And what's he want with Lucas?"

"And where is Lucas?" Dean traced the inscription. "Where do we go from here?"

Sam stood up and turned in a circle. "There's lights over there."

"Yeah, the construction project where they've been having all those accidents. Might as well check there first." The brothers walked towards the site. Dean looked back towards the grave. He couldn't help wonder if the problems plaguing the site had something to do with Reid not wanting any neighbors.

Near the grave was a high fence with a big "Danger: High Voltage" sign. Almost as soon as they reached that fence – all the lights snapped off. Sam slapped Dean on the arm and Dean nodded as they saw the single figure going over the fence near a junction box. They looked at each other, shrugged, and climbed over as well.

They crouched low and circled the pit. It was clearly dug for a basement foundation. The bottom had a concrete footing and support steel in place. The earthmoving equipment was parked to one side by a double-wide trailer. Temporary stairs and scaffolding led down to a concrete floor with huge support beams sticking out of it.

The figure they had seen climbing the fence was fumbling at the door of the trailer. They heard a hissed curse in man's tone before the door swung open. He slipped inside – followed quickly by a thud and a yelp.

The brothers looked at each other. "Amateur." They said together.
******

He was stiff. His wrists hurt from the ropes holding him to the steel struts under the stairs. His mouth was dry and sore from the gag. He was trying very hard to be brave and not to cry, but it was getting harder and harder since the bad man had put him in this little place under the stairs and everything went dark. He wanted his Mommy. He wanted somebody to find him.
******

Dean sighed, rolled his eyes and walked up to the open door as the would-be burglar fumbled in the office. He counted to three and turned on the inside lights. "Hey, buddy." Dean smirked as David Silverheels almost jumped out of his skin. "Like to tell us what you're after?"

Sam started to follow Dean, but stopped dead in his tracks and turned to the pit.

"Lucas?" Sam said aloud. He looked down into the pit. He was certain he had heard something. His eyes widened as he heard it again. "Dean!" He called. "I think I heard Lucas!"

"What?" Dean turned. David charged, shoved Dean aside and bolted for the earthmoving equipment. "Ah, shit! Sam! You go get Lucas! Hey!" He ran after David. "Wait a minute!"

Sam clattered down the metal staircase. "Lucas? Hang on! I hear you!" He looked quickly around the open area before running over to another stairway leading to the floor of the pit. He peered into the darkness under it. Lucas whimpered.

Snarling a curse under his breath, Sam crawled under. The boy was tied to one of the supports of the metal stair.

"Lucas." He whispered. Lucas turned to him. That's when he saw the gag. He pulled it loose "It's all right. It's all right." He soothed, dragging his knife out of his boot to cut the ropes.

"There – there was a guy on a big white horse." Lucas stammered in a rush. "I-I saw him. I-I followed him to the grave, b-but the b-bad guy got me and p-put me here." He gulped a little, not being able to stop a few tears from leaking out.

"Shh. Shh." Sam crooned softly. "You're safe now. Dean and I won't let the bad guy hurt you."

As soon as he was free, Lucas grabbed his neck and Sam wrapped his arms around him.

"You heard me?" Lucas whimpered into his shoulder.

"Yeah." Sam nodded, suddenly chilled as he realized there was no way he could have heard the desperate cry that had seemed to echo up from the pit floor, not with the ordinary sense of hearing. "Yeah. I could hear you."

"How?"

Sam took a deep breath. "I don't know. We'll figure that out later, right now, let's get you out of here."

Lucas nodded and scrubbed his eyes with one hand. Sam gave him another huge hug.

"I want to see Dean."

"Sure." Sam grinned. "Let's go."
*****

Dean put on a burst of speed and tackled David before he could get into the labyrinth of machines. They rolled on the ground cursing before Dean got a headlock on the younger man.

"Listen to me, damn it! Sam and I were just looking for Lucas! What were you after?"

David set his jaw, looking like Sam in one of his petulant moods.

"I don't have time for this." Dean sputtered. He let David plump on the ground. "Fine! Whatever! I'm going to find Sam."

David looked at the ground. He nodded. "All right." He pointed to the trailer. "Hartman has been stealing from the tribe. All those suspicious fires have been paid for by the tribe's insurance policy. The construction blueprints he filed at Oklahoma City are not the plans that he gave to the tribal council and I think the invoices for materials he submitted to the council are not what he's really bought. I think the proof is in these invoices I took from his desk." He showed a manila envelope he'd stuffed under his jacket.

"What does your brother think of this?" Dean raised his eyebrows.

"My brother?" David's face was an imitation of Sam's when he was furious. "He thinks I'm a dumbass kid! He treats me like I'm twelve when I'm twenty-three!"

Dean puffed his cheeks; it was too familiar an argument. "Give him a chance, kid. He's got a lot on his shoulders being the Sheriff."

David snorted and started to say something. Both men froze as a car crunched on the gravel road leading to the gate behind the trailer.

"Must have tripped some alarm in the trailer," Dean mused. "Wait, that's Hartman's car. Wouldn't he have called your brother?" He grabbed David's arm and dragged him into the shadows.

"What happened to the lights, Cavendish?" Hartman demanded as he and his driver got out of the car.

"I don't know, sir, I left them on. I'm sure of it." Answered the driver. "Stay here, sir." The driver pulled a gun.

"Nonsense, Cavendish." Hartman boldly headed for the trailer. "The door's open!"

"Mr. Hartman, please stay here until I get the lights on!"

"Fine! You turn on the lights, then I'll go "rescue" that brat and let you get to work." Hartman frowned at the open door. He reached into his pocket and pulled out a small flashlight to search the office.

Cavendish circled through the heavy equipment to another junction box.

Dean followed him with his eyes. "Stay put, David." He hissed.

"Fuck, no." David snarled.

Dean sighed with annoyance. "Don't have time for this." He punched David in the jaw and propped him against the large wheel of the bulldozer.

"Dean!" came the call from the stairs by the pit.

"Shit." Dean turned for the stairs to freeze at the metallic snick of a pistol. He raised his hands.

"Don't move." Grated the voice of Hartman's driver. "Turn around, slowly." He frowned. "I don't know you."

"I'm a friend of Andrea's." Dean's voice went cold. "And you kidnapped her son."

"I didn't intend that! I thought he saw. . ." Cavendish paused.

"Saw you set a fire for your boss to collect on?" Dean kept his hands in sight. Damn it, Sammy, where are you?

"Never mind what I thought. You're the one trespassing."

David came surging out of the shadows with a yell. Dean clamped his teeth on a curse and grabbed Cavendish's gun hand. He lost his grip when David crashed into Cavendish's back and all three went down in a tangle of arms and legs.

A single shot echoed in the air. David clutched his leg and toppled backward. Cavendish yelped as Dean savagely twisted the gun out of his hand. He earned the mark of a silver ring on his jaw. It took three blows before he fell sprawling. Dean ejected the clip from the pistol and threw it into the dark.

The lights snapped on.

"Sometimes you just have to do things for yourself." Said Hartman in disgust. He stepped away from the control box. "I'd step away from Mr. Cavendish, Mr. Winchester." Hartman had a gun of his own. "Thankfully I've been keeping this in my office. Terrible things, these fires that have been happening. Now, if you will kindly help Mr. Silverheels to his feet we will all head down the stairs and I'll finally get to rescue young Lucas and return him to his grateful mother."

"Don't bet on it." Dean snapped, helping David up and ignoring the younger man's apology. Cavendish rose wavering to his feet at Hartman’s orders.

"Oh, I would. I always get what I want." Hartman smirked.
******

"Dean!" Sam called when he reached the head of the stairs. As soon as he called, he saw the thin beam of light moving around the office. "Shit." He breathed.

"What's happened?" Lucas's eyes went wide.

"I think we've got trouble." Sam went flat to the ground. “Get down, stay as close as you can.” Belly crawling by inches, they reached the safety of the shadows by the short flight of stairs that led to the trailer door as the shot rang out. Sam pulled Lucas to him and shoved him under the stairs as the lights snapped on.

“Listen to me.” Sam whispered. “You stay here. I’ll try to help Dean. As soon as I’m out of sight, you get into the trailer and call the Sheriff. Got that?” Lucas nodded. “Good boy. If it's safe I'll give you a signal.”

He moved at a crouch as he headed in the direction of the voices.

“. . . I always get what I want.” Hartman bragged.

Sam’s nostrils flared. There was only one response to that kind of arrogance.
******

Hartman went sprawling as a size twelve boot slammed into the small of his back. Sam grabbed his gun hand and shoved his knee into Hartman’s elbow. Hartman screeched as the joint bent wrong and popped. Sam pulled the gun from him. Dean had taken advantage of the distraction to leave David wavering and punch Cavendish in the jaw again.

Sam stood up, leaving Hartman rolling on the ground. He popped the clip. “Think this’ll fit yours?” He asked Dean before he went to help David.

“Where’s Lucas?”

“In the office, calling the Sheriff.” Sam grinned. “He wants to see you.”

“Glad to oblige,” Dean grinned back.

Sam hooked two fingers into his mouth and whistled. Lucas came running from the office. Dean scooped him off the ground and hugged him tight.

“No.” Hartman rasped, forcing himself to his feet. “No. You don’t win. You don’t win. The Sheriff's been contacted by the FBI. You Winchesters are wanted for credit card fraud, grave desecration, even murder! Silverheels will probably arrest you before he arrests me!” He staggered backwards as he pointed at them. "I'll say you kidnapped Lucas."

"And I'll say you're a LIAR!" Lucas shouted from Dean's side. Dean frowned and looked at Sam. Sam's head was cocked to one side as if he was listening.

"A horse?" David turned his head.

Cavendish staggered to his feet. "Mr. Hartman. . ."

"Do something you idiot!" Hartman shouted at him.

Dean spun Cavendish around and punched him. When he staggered sideways, Sam punched him too. Cavendish fell down again.

The hoofbeats thundered close. A rider on a white horse hurled past them bringing the chill that only a spirit can bring. For an instant it reared high above Hartman and he cringed away. He toppled over the edge of the cellar pit with a scream. The horse touched its hooves to the ground and both vanished as the sirens of the Sheriff and the State Police shattered the night.

David began a shaky chant in his own language.
******

Three days later, the Winchesters and the Barrs were having a picnic near the cedar grove. Sam followed Lucas to the graveside to give Dean and Andrea some time alone.

"Did you figure out how you heard me?" Lucas asked as Sam helped him brush off the stone.

"Yeah." Sam leaned back against one of the cedars. "Remember Dean said he saw something bad happen to our mom when he was real young? Well, I was just a baby then and something happened to me at that time too." He studied the ground. "Sometimes I see things that might happen to people. I sometimes know when spirits are around."

"So, because Peter made me see the bad things he was going to do." Lucas frowned. "That did something to me that made you able to hear me?"

"It's called telepathy." Sam nodded. "Yeah, I think so. You were scared and you really, really wanted someone to hear you and I think that's why I did."

"Is it always going to happen?"

"I don't know."

"That's scary." Lucas looked away.

"I know." Sam said. "I'm sorry."

Sam straightened as a heavy chill settled around the stone. Lucas reached up and took his hand.

"Don't be scared, Sam. He's a friend."

Sam swallowed very hard as the shadowy figure faded into shape under the trees. His eyes widened as he heard an inaudible whisper.

"Welcome, Sam Winchester."
******

"So you want me to stay here?" Andrea smiled. "I don’t have a job now that Mr. Hartman is under investigation for fraud and is going to be arrested as soon as he gets out of the hospital."

"It'll be good for Lucas." Dean said as he helped her pack the basket. "Silverheels –he's also a shaman. He might be able to help Lucas."

Andrea lost her smile. "So, it's not over."

"Andrea, I wish I knew." Dean shook his head. "At least this Ranger is a Guardian Spirit. He's one of the good guys." Andrea gave a deep sigh. Dean looked away. "Besides, the Potawatomi Reservation is sovereign land. The FBI won't be bothering you about us."

"Dean . . ."

"I didn't kill anyone." He said quickly.

Andrea smiled again. "I know that. I was going to say thank you."

"Oh, well. . ." He grinned. "In that case." He gently put his hands on her waist and pulled her into a kiss. She placed her hands on his shoulders and returned it.

"I can't stay." He finally whispered when they stopped.

"I know." She murmured.

"Dean!" Lucas shouted. Dean's face reddened, especially when he saw Sam was behind Lucas and had a grin on his face that promised a lot of teasing later.

"Hey, buddy!" Dean swung him up into his arms again.

"We saw the Ranger!"

Dean stopped smiling and frowned at Sam. Sam stopped grinning and nodded.

"He knows we lost the Colt." Sam's voice shook a little. "He's sorry for it. He thinks we'll get it back somehow."

"But you've got to do the right thing with it." Lucas reported solemnly.

"I don't think you need to worry about that." Andrea held out her arms and he swung from Dean's arms to hers. "Oof! You're too heavy for this. You're going to be leaving then?" she asked them.

The brothers looked at each other and nodded. "Tomorrow morning."
*******

They drove silently back to the main road in the pre-dawn light. For a short time, a rider on a white horse paced them before turning to vanish over a rise.

End
******

Notes for "Hoofbeats of Yesteryear"

Prompt from chemm80: Sam and Dean working on a ranch, either preseries or current, while on a case or to make money. Surprise me. (Hope I succeeded)

In "Dead Man's Blood" John Winchester is quoted:
"Back in 1835 . . .they say Samuel Colt made a gun—a special gun. He made it for a hunter—a man like us, only on horseback. The story goes he made thirteen bullets. This hunter used the gun a half dozen times before he disappeared, the gun along with him. Somehow, Daniel (Elkins)got his hands on it. They say—they say this gun can kill anything."

Once upon a time in the Old West, a young Texas Ranger called Reid was traveling with his older brother as part of a posse that was ambushed by an outlaw gang led by "Butch" Cavendish. Reid was the only survivor of the massacre. He was saved and nursed back to health by members of the Potawatomi tribe. When he returned to health, he became a mysterious, masked figure that traveled the territories dispensing justice with silver bullets.

It is the author's speculation that he was also in the business of saving people and hunting things.

In 2003, Chad Michael Murray played a character named Hartman in a truly awful attempt by the WB to make a pilot based on this legend of the West

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Comments
thehighwaywoman From: thehighwaywoman Date: September 11th, 2008 12:51 pm (UTC) (Link)
This was awesome, Ruth. Andrea and Lucas were great characters in canon, and I like what you've done with them here, giving us a look at what life must be like for those whose lives are briefly touched by the Winchesters once the Winchesters have moved on. It makes sense that Lucas would continue to develop powers and abilities. Also, a really interesting casefile that you put together!
just_ruth From: just_ruth Date: September 11th, 2008 10:43 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thank you! I'm glad you liked it. I can see a lot of flaws right now, but I'm going to rest a bit before I start tweaking. I confess I was more than a little nervous because when I went back to the original prompt post for the notes -- she said she didn't want a crossover and er-well, it happened.

and Lucas is showing signs of popping up again in another story

Edited at 2008-09-11 10:44 pm (UTC)
rafikiven From: rafikiven Date: September 12th, 2008 02:55 am (UTC) (Link)
Good fic! I have to admit that the winchester boys on a ranch didn't really grab my interest, but I'm glad I gave this fic a shot. Well done!

I totally loved Lucas! This is the first fic I've ever read that had him in it and he was such a great character and had such a connection with the boys. You should totally write more Lucas!

And I got a lovely LJ reminder--Happy Birthday!!!
just_ruth From: just_ruth Date: September 12th, 2008 04:40 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thank you! I'm glad you liked the story. I've always liked "Dead in the Water" and the characters.

And thank you for the early birthday wishes as well!
arliss From: arliss Date: September 13th, 2008 12:26 am (UTC) (Link)
I love this story! It's great to see Andrea and Lucas again after so long.

And that's a great icon for this story.
just_ruth From: just_ruth Date: September 13th, 2008 03:17 am (UTC) (Link)
Thank you! I tweaked an image I found on the web and I liked the results too. :)
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