Characters: Dean, Det. Bobby Goren (Gen, Crossover)
Rating: PG-13 (language)
Summary: (Early Season One) This is not one of those times Dean wanted to get caught.
Author's Notes: Happy birthday heliokleia! I know how badly you wanted a Dean vs. Goren story after this crossover drabble, and I think I finally got Goren's voice back in my head long enough to do it. Hope you like it. :)
"Sit down—please. Sit down."
The man is hovering, solicitous but pushy with it, like the easygoing behavior is a cover for something else. Like he's playing with you cat-and-mouse before the gash in your belly surprises you and bleeds your life away.
Dean knows about pretending to be someone else, something else. He's lived it for as long as he can remember. What started with disguising himself as a normal child for the school-of-the-week became cycling through suits and uniforms and fake IDs on the way to information that would help him solve the next case.
But this— this man— is something different. This is some kind of psychology at work, the kind of manipulation Dean doesn't have the will or skill to maintain at length. Most of Dean's deceptions involving other people are relatively short-lived.
"Now Mr. Winchester— it's Dean, isn't it, may I call you ‘Dean?'— what were you doing at Mr. Tannenby's house?"
"I was checking out a gas leak, like I said."
"Now come on, Dean— you know there wasn't any leak. Don't you. Because we checked with the Manhattan Gas Company, and they have no record of your employment."
"I'm a private contractor— that's why I go out after business hours," Dean covers smoothly.
"Oh, a contractor, right, right…" The man stirs the air with his finger, circling in on Dean. "That's why you've got your little pretend uniform on, with the fake nametag and everything."
Dean struggles to keep his cool, even though the man is leaning over him now. Smelling him, Dean thinks, Jesus Christ the man is smelling him— that was definitely a noise. What the fuck?
"Mr. Winchester…" and the man looks at him so sincerely, like he's disappointed that Dean's lying, like they've moved beyond that now, "why didn't you call the police when you found the body?"
Dean squints at the detective— Goren— in disbelief. "I didn't have a chance— the cops broke the door down right after I got there!"
"Yes, the door, that's right, the door… You didn't come through the door yourself, though, did you? The officers said you used the window. Not exactly a professional entrance now, is it?"
The light behind Goren's eyes sharpens, focusing on Dean with the kind of steel he'd suspected was hiding there all along. Just as suddenly, it softens. "Come on, Dean…" The man eases himself into a chair, half-reclines on the table, and Dean knows the sound in his voice— hates that sound, because ten-to-one it'll be followed by the kind of proposition that still makes him blush after all these years.
"We know you didn't kill Jack Tannenby," the man continues. "So we just need to know why you were at his apartment and anything you might have seen. The truth," Goren adds.
Dean wants to roll his eyes just like Sam (Jesus, Sammy— thank god he didn't come), because that kind of truth has gotten him nowhere. It even cost him a girlfriend a couple of years back.
"No really, Dean, the truth. Whatever it is— and I've heard it all, believe me— the investigation depends on you telling us what you know."
Fuck it. "I hunt and destroy paranormal problems. Tannenby was the friend of a guy who'd been killed by a demon and I wanted to find out what he knew. But the demon got there first."
"What?" Dean sits up in his chair, totally thrown by this approach. "What?" he says again.
"I'm kidding, Dean. Come on— nobody really believes in the supernatural. You know that, right? Of course you do, a smart guy like you. Of course." Goren stands up and leans right down in Dean's space, poking the air with his finger as he talks. "So you were there, slipping through the window for a little B&E or maybe some kind of role-playing escort service gig, and what about the dogs? Did you hear any dogs when you came in?"
"Dogs?" Dean's confused, the guy's way beyond weird now— he actually seems nuts. "Dogs. No."
"No, no, of course you wouldn't," Goren muses, walking around the table, "they'd have gone right for your throat, just like poor old Tannenby."
Oh. The guy thinks the damage left by the B'noltik demon came from dogs…
"So the dogs were gone by then, but did you see anyone else around the apartment? Hear any doors close, anything like that?"
Dean relaxes a little. "No. Sorry. I thought the place was empty until I went into the living room," he adds, and curses himself for offering extra information, because that always leads to trouble. His nose twitches involuntarily at the memory of the thick, coppery odor that had greeted him in the hallway.
Goren catches it. "But you knew something was wrong because you smelled it, didn't you?"
"Yes." Dean figures the man must be obsessed with smelling in general, because Goren's giving him a look now— a half-lidded lazy kind of interest that makes Dean a little nervous, to be honest— and smiling like they've got something in common.
"But you didn't see anything in the apartment? Except Mr. Tannenby?" Goren coaxes.
"No," Dean answers truthfully, looking him in the eyes to stress his sincerity.
Goren runs his tongue thoughtfully over his lower lip, and there's something about it Dean doesn't like— something insinuating. Dean's ears go red at the tips so fast he can feel it, like a distress beacon sending out a signal.
"That's too bad, Dean..." The slow, husky sound of Goren's voice makes Dean dig his fingers into his thighs to keep from bolting out the door. He forces himself to wait, knowing that it's almost over and that Sam's still safe.
"All right, Mr. Winchester, all right. I think we're done for now."
Really? The relief floods through Dean's stomach, but he doesn't move. Goren's the kind to test you— might be doing it right now— so he doesn't want to blow it.
"We'll be in touch if we have any more… questions for you, all right Dean?" Goren's watching him like he's waiting for Dean to make a mistake, waiting for an excuse to just pounce.
"Sure," Dean answers more steadily than he feels, rising to his feet unhurriedly. He walks toward the door, being as casual as he can, although he half-expects Goren to call him back at any moment
The weight of Goren's gaze on him is unsettling. The level of interest— whether it's the X-rated kind or something colored by gas-chamber fantasies— turns Dean's blood to ice within his veins.
He can feel that stare prickling along his back, all through the long trip down the hallway leading to the elevator.
It's still there even after Dean finally steps outside the police station. It follows him stubbornly as he walks down the sunlit sidewalk to the rendezvous point, where he hopes to god his brother's already waiting…
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