I woke up close to midnight sweating and shaking. It had been a long time since I’d had a nightmare about the last hunt I had gone on with the boys, but I still remembered it so vividly. I sat up and rubbed my eyes. I probably looked like crap. I hadn’t showered in almost two days, my mass of auburn red curls felt tangled beyond any kind of help, and my eyes were probably puffy and red from crying.
As I thought about cleaning up I decided that it was about time I found out everything I could about the body-jumper Jensen and Jared had been after. So I pulled a notebook out of my purse, jotted down a quick note in case Jared woke up, then hurried out to my car. I tried to avoid looking people in the eye, since not only was I not dressed like I normally would be, but I looked like I had just walked out of a zombie movie.
I drove back to the motel I had a room at and brought the journal in with me, since I’d left it in the car. I jumped in the shower and soaked up the hot water for twenty minutes before getting dressed in my normal clothes, dumping the rumpled skirt, blouse, and jacket into my suitcase. Instead, I pulled on a pair of stonewashed flair jeans and a light blue tank top, then pulled my leather jacket on over that. Then, while I combed the water out of my hair I put on my reading glasses and began searching through the journal for mentions of the body-jumper.
To my surprise, by the time I had my hair all untangled I knew everything I could ever want to about the demon. Jared, who was in charge of the journal, had kept careful track of everything they had found out. I smiled as I pulled my hair up into a thick ponytail. It was just like Jared. He was always so thorough.
The demon itself was scary. It was particularly violent body-jumper and every time it switched into a new body the old body died no matter what. It could jump into anyone as long as it could see the person, and there was apparently only one way to kill it. You had to trap it inside one body then kill that body while the demon is inside, non-specific on how you kill it. I searched for hours trying to find another way to get rid of it, but that was the only thing there was. I didn’t like the idea of having to kill someone, especially not after my two years absence from hunting, but since it was the only way, I didn’t have much choice.
I spent another few hours coming up with a plan and gathering everything I needed to complete it. Just in case, I decided that I would use a silver stake to the heart. It would be bloody, but it would make doubly sure the demon wasn’t coming back. I also came up with a way to trap it in one body. I would just have to lure it somewhere that was empty of people. To my good luck there was an abandoned warehouse at the edge of town. If I could get the demon to the warehouse then it would be trapped in whatever body it had.
The hardest part would be actually finding who was possessed with the demon currently. But Jared had left some pretty precise clues to look for. Was at the scene of the last unexplained death, was generally a man, with this demon anyway, and preferred someone with a family. Probably because so that the demon could torment them. By the time the sun was coming up again I had a general idea of who the demon was.
I had found a spell in the book that would trap the body in one place, making it easier for me to waste it, and another spell that would protect me from possession. I quickly memorized them and the diagram I would have to draw for the first one, then began packing the trunk of my car with everything I would need.
Once everything was finished I headed back to the hospital. I was, once again, going to be running short on sleep, but if I wanted to kill this thing I had to act fast before it disappeared.
Of course, I didn’t want to do anything without talking with Jensen first. A leftover sentiment from before they had left. So I left everything in the car and hurried into the hospital. The receptionist stopped me and asked me who I was, until she recognized my face and commented on how different I looked. I gave her an impatient smile then tried to walk the rest of the way, even though I wanted very much to run.
Jared was asleep, his breathing deep and even, and I took a moment to run a hand through his hair. He must have been exhausted to be sleeping this much. After watching him for a moment I sat down on the bed next to Jensen.
He looked so peaceful just laying there, eyes closed. After what I had already said to him before I didn’t know what to say anymore.
“Hey,” I finally said quietly. I cleared my throat when tears immediately began filling my eyes. I didn’t need this, not now. I had to be focused for the hunt and I could do that if I was having a pity party. I waited until the urge to cry died down, then before it could come back I laid out my plan for him.
“Just don’t tell Jared,” I finished, trying to keep the mood light, for my sake. “You know how he can be.”
I nearly burst in to tears when Jensen didn’t answer me. Him being in a coma was turning out to be harder than I thought. Jensen was always the one I discussed hunting stuff with, and he always had good ideas to add to what I was already planning. It was our combined plans that were the best.
I brushed his hand one last time, glanced at Jared, then headed out. I had a demon I needed to waste.