Title: Gentle (Part One)
Characters: Chloe, Sam, Lois, Lana, Dean, Mary, John, Ma, Pa
Disclaimer: Don't own
Summary: The thing that made an isolated, scarred ten year old Chloe notice fourteen year old Sam was the fact that he was gentle, incredibly so. She'd never seen someone that gentle before, hadn't realized someone like him existed.
A/N: In this universe NOTHING supernatural ever happened to the Winchester family (kinda like in the universe shown in "What Is And What Should Never Be") so the family are all alive and living in Lawrence. And, of course, NOTHING is canon in Smallville.WARNING
: Somewhat dark, contains child abuse.
Chloe fingered the collar necklace that'd arrived by Federal Express early that morning.
It felt odd, loose enough that she could swallow and such, but it felt restricting.
"Stop pulling at it
." Ma slapped Chloe's hand away.
It stung and she pulled back, resisting the urge to returned her hand to it and tug.
She looked down at herself, making a face.
She was wearing a black dress.
wore a dress.
Lois and Lana were similarly dressed, wearing their own, distinct collar necklace.
Their dresses were pink (Lana) and red (Lois).
Lana seemed to enjoy her dress while Lois made faces at and fidgeted with hers.
"Now remember what I told you." Ma announced, pausing outside of the store.
The girls nodded.
Chloe clenched her fist to keep from reaching for her collar once more.
"Now, let's go and say hello to Chloe's little friend." Ma smiled, entering the store.
"I don't want to do this." Chloe whimpered, hesitating outside.
"Well, I've never been inside a store before and I may never get this opportunity again." Lois fidgeted with the hem of her dress before taking in a deep breath and squaring her shoulders. "So I'm going in."
Lana reached for Chloe's hand, and together they entered together to see Ma talking to a wary Sam and a pretty young black haired girl next to him.
Sam's expression brightened when it went passed Ma and landed on Chloe. "Hey."
She gave him an awkward smile, keeping an eye on Ma.
"I wanted to thank you for keeping an eye on my little darling. She's told me that you have treated her nicely when she imposed herself onto you." Ma seemed like a completely different person right now as she turned to Chloe, all smiles and laughter. "Come here baby. Don't be shy."
Chloe pulled Lana along with her for emotional support.
Sam bent to his knees and looked at Chloe in the eyes. "You okay?"
She remained silent.
He frowned slightly.
Ma's hand came down on Chloe's shoulder, causing the blonde to flinch. "She's fine."
Sam's frown grew.
"Hey." The pretty dark haired girl bent down next to Sam. "I'm Sarah, Sam's girlfriend. What's your name?"
"Her name's Chloe." Ma spoke up once more, before motioning to the other girls. "And these are her sisters, Lana, and Lois."
Lois, who was standing looking at some magazines, looked up at them. "What's a girlfriend?"
Chloe wanted to know the same thing.
Was it a girl who was a friend?
If so, she didn't understand the need to proclaim that.
Ma sent Lois a look.
Lois' gaze lowered to the magazine.
Sarah watched this and shared a quick look with Sam before Ma turned back towards them.
Lana's arms were wrapped around Chloe's arm, her hazel eyes on Sam's face, peering at him with the utmost interest.
Sam smiled at the dark haired girl. "Nice to meet you."
Lana blinked up at him.
Sam turned his smile on Chloe. "So is being silent a family thing?"
"Yes, they're very quiet." Ma nodded.
For the first time ever Chloe saw annoyance cross gentle Sam's features.
She took a cautious step back.
His expression turned apologetic.
Sarah cleared her throat. "You must
tell me who does your hair." She stood and smiled, drawing Ma over to the side.
"You okay?" Sam asked again.
Lana leaned closer into Chloe.
The blonde nodded mutely.
Lois sent a quick look in Ma's direction before making her way towards her 'sisters', still half hiding behind the magazine.
"Are you really okay?" Sam asked, gaze tracing Chloe's features.
She nodded, feeling better now that he was gentle Sam again.
"Are you going to feed the kittens again?" Lana wanted to know.
Sam blinked and turned towards her. "You know about that?"
Lois shot Lana a look.
So did Chloe.
Lana didn't notice. "The alleyway is right across our home. Chloe watches you feed the kittens. She likes you because you're very gentle with them."
"Lana!" Chloe hissed in horror.
Not only had Lana let him know that Chloe was basically spying on him...but she'd given him clear directions to their home.
Ma wouldn't like that.
Sam looked between them. "It's okay. There's nothing wrong with that."
Lois ignored him, going to grab Lana's arm. "Come on. Let's go exploring the store." And with that she dragged the dark haired girl away.
Chloe watched them go, feeling vulnerable and alone.
She'd been alone with Sam before, but it hadn't been under Ma's watchful, distrustful eye.
She felt sick, her stomach rumbling.
She wanted to go.
She wanted to be far away
"Do you want something?" Sam cleared his throat. "Some coke?"
"No thank you." She followed her sisters with her gaze. "I prefer not to ingest a substance that can be used to clean blood."
She then froze, going pale.
Those green eyes tore away from her sisters and turned to Sam, giving him a crooked grimace. "I read about that in a book."
The same book that told her how to get rid of all evidence of a crime she had yet to commit.
The same book whose information she'd used just the night before.
"Interesting reading material." Sam mumbled.
Chloe's gaze went to an open book and she left his side, going to look at it, recognizing it as mathematical equation.
Very wrongly done.
She pulled the book to her and looked down at what was written there in pencil. "This is wrong."
"Huh?" Sarah asked, turning from Ma to look at her. "What do you mean it's wrong?"
"You used the wrong equations in this one, and here, you divided instead of multiplying." Chloe pointed to the mistakes. "And this one...how
did you come to this answer?"
Sarah blinked, hesitating to answer. "Honey, I don't think you know these equations. You're only like-what-eight?"
"I'm ten." She answered, already reaching for the pencil and eraser on the counter and beginning to erase the horrendously wrong equations.
!" Sarah exclaimed in horror.
Chloe looked up, flinching at the raised voice.
Lana twirled around at the noise and Lois dropped her magazine.
." Sam snapped.
Sarah opened her mouth and then closed it, sighing. "Sorry, I forgot."
Chloe put down the book, pencil and eraser, having forgotten herself and where she was when she'd gotten distracted by the wrongness on that paper. Her heart raced, beating so hard against her chest. "I'm sorry. I-I forgot-I was wrong-I shouldn't have-I-."
sorry." Sarah gave her a reassuring smile. "Why don't you show me what you were talking about?"
Chloe shook her head, hugging herself, suddenly cold.
Sarah went to her knees and reached for Chloe's hand.
Chloe flinched away from the touch.
Sarah didn't notice though, her gaze was horrified and on Chloe's wrist.
Chloe followed her gaze down and realized that her dress' sleeve had ridden up, revealing the ugly, purple mark on her skin left from where Ma had grabbed her the night before. The young girl hurriedly lowered her sleeve and sent Ma a terrified look, feeling like she could cry of relief when she realized that Ma had been eyeing Lana and Lois at that moment and hadn't noticed.
Sarah shared a look with Sam, before returning her gaze to Chloe and smiling. "Really honey, show me what you were saying about the equations. Please
Chloe hesitated, eyeing the door, feeling suffocated as she rubbed her wrist over her sleeve. "I want to go."
"You don't have to-." Sam started.
"I want to go
." She looked towards Ma, nervous.
Ma had her hands on Lois' and Lana's shoulders. "Is it out of your system now?"
She nodded vigorously and pushed passed them, feeling the walls of the place closing in on her. She raced out of the store and gasped in air, desperately tugging at her collar, needing to breathe, but the collar wouldn't move. Her movements grew more desperate.
"I said stop it
." Ma hissed as she hurried out at her, with Lois and Lana next to her.
"I can't breathe." Chloe clawed at her neck, tugging desperate at the collar. "I can't breathe
Lois and Lana looked at each other.
Ma let go of them and went to Chloe, grabbing her hands and holding them still, dragging her into a dark alleyway, hiding them from view. "Don't touch
Chloe looked up at her.
"Look at my eyes." Ma ordered.
Chloe did as told.
Chloe breathed in.
Chloe breathed out.
She felt her heart rate slowing, and it was easy to breathe again.
"Stupid girl." Ma let go of her. "It was just a panic attack."
Chloe hung her head.
Even with her powers she was still messing things up and being a bad girl.
Ma had brought her to see Sam, Ma had been nice to Sam and the girl who proclaimed to be his friend.
And what had Chloe done?
She'd been bad.
If it had been Pa he'd have slapped her.
She waited, head bowed, for the just judgment.
Chloe looked up, confused.
Ma wasn't even looking at her.
She was looking at a parking meter.
It was bent away from Chloe.
Ma turned to Chloe and slipped a finger through her collar shaking her. "How did you do that?
" She shook her a little harder. "I didn't give you permission to use your power
Chloe's eyes were wide as she grabbed onto Ma's hand, the finger between the collar sticking into her skin and causing her to choke.
"I'm sorry!" She whimpered, voice hoarse, standing on her tiptoes.
?" Ma slipped in two more fingers.
Chloe gasped for breath, her throat killing her.
"Ma!" Lana cried in shock.
Lois pushed Ma. "Leave her alone!"
Ma turned to her and glared. "Shock
Lois screamed as she fell to the ground, holding onto her collar as small electrical charges shocked her. Not only did the collar keep the powers under control, only allowing them to be used when given commands, but they were voice automated, following the orders of the one whose voice was programed into it.
!" Chloe cried, seeing her cousin in pain. "Please! Please
Lois gasped, taking in deep breaths as suddenly she was able to breath again, her body sore.
Chloe still stood on her tiptoes, held up uncomfortably by her collar.
Ma tightened her hold on the collar before using it to yank Chloe to the ground.
The blonde fell down next to her cousin.
"Get up. Both of you." She hissed. "And move
Lana hurried towards them and helped them on their feet.-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-v-
Chloe was hungry.
They all were.
But tonight there wouldn't be any food----punishment for what had happened in the alleyway.
The three girls sat by the table, looking at the books in front of them.
In each one was detailed ways of killing a person or subduing them or such.
One day, when they were older and fully conditioned to obey, they'd go to Grandfather, to work for him.
It was thanks to him that they were alive, that they had their abilities, and they owed the scary man everything.
Chloe wondered what it meant to 'breed', Ma's words from before ringing in her ear.
What had she meant when she said when the time was right she'd be bred with someone else like her?
"Why do you think Ma took us to see your Sam?" Lana asked softly, her stomach growling loudly.
"She knew Chloe wouldn't want to see him after this." Lois replied, rubbing her still sore neck, gaze on her books. "She did it so that Chloe would never go back. And she wanted to see how the collar would work if Chloe subconsciously triggered it there. She wanted to see her wriggle in pain for the first time."
Lana winced, remembering when that'd happened to her.
Chloe rubbed her collar, remembering wanting one so badly so she wouldn't be a bad girl anymore.
The collar hadn't done any help.
She was just a bad girl.
Even with the collar all she did was cause trouble.
"Why didn't the collar contain her ability?" Lana wanted to know, sending a scared look to the stairs.
Lois made a face. "I think-all the serum in her-made it stronger." She held her stomach as it growled. "I heard Ma telling Grandfather on the phone, asking for a stronger collar."
Lana shivered at the mention of Grandfather.
Chloe's gaze was on her textbook, on the pictures of the man behind the old woman, a knife pressed against the skin of her neck. The next couple of pictures showed the spurt of blood, and the sliced open skin. She didn't feel the need to look away.
After last night nothing more could make her feel sick.
One day she'd be the one with the knife, one day she would be the one slicing the throat of someone else without a moment's thought.
All her life she'd been trained for this, to one day 'graduate' to join Grandfather's side.
She sighed and grabbed at her collar.
"Do you think we're monsters?" Lana whispered, eyes on the pictures.
Lois looked up at her. "No. We're not."
"Monsters kill." Lana whispered, wiping at a tear. "We're going to kill." Her bottom lip trembled. "I don't wanna."
"How many times do I have to tell you that we don't have a choice in the matter?" Lois hissed. "Our parents don't want us. Yours are dead. We have no one else
. This is our family. We have no other future. Get used to it, Lana. The sooner you do, the better everything will be for you."
Lois turned to Chloe. "You too. Now that you're activated you'll be expected to do more."
Chloe nodded, gaze ducked. "I know."
Lois sighed as she looked between them, and then placed her hands on theirs.
Lana and Chloe joined hands as well.
Their stomachs growled as one.
But it was drowned out by the sound of the front door being kicked in.