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DA/SPN Fic: "Just Another Day at the Park"

Title: "Just Another Day at the Park"
Author: lori_leaf
Beta: girlfan1979
Rating: PG (mild swearing)
Summary: Manticore failed to instruct Alec in playground etiquette
Author's Notes: This is part of my Fox 'Verse. It works as a stand-alone story. The only thing you need to know is this is a crossover between Dark Angel and Supernatural. I've messed with both timelines. It's 2007, Dean is 19, Sam is 15. John found Alec in a school during an undercover mission. Alec is 10 years old. He's been living with the Winchesters at Bobby's house for a few weeks.



It isn't until later that Alec realizes his mistake. He's been assuming that the playground at the park is like the training field at Manticore. He assumes the same rules apply. He's wrong.

John has noticed that Alec joins his boys in their morning workouts every day. The kid keeps up with the older boys with no problems. He seems to enjoy the routine. He especially likes the run around Bobby's property and would sometimes do a second circuit right before dinner. Bobby jokes that the kid is checking the parameter, but John wouldn't be at all surprised if that's exactly what the kid's doing. He watches his boys settle into a routine of steady training and Alec isn't at all put off by the drills. He seems to be used to them. Which is why John decides to order Alec to spend less time being a soldier and more time being a kid. He decides to send his kids to the town park every other day. Sam and Dean are ordered to run the fitness course there. Alec is ordered to learn how to play with other kids. Alec reacts to the mission as though John ordered him to eat an entire jar of jalapenos. John just ruffles the boy's hair and assures him that the other kids will like him fine.

It's a fairly dingy little park. There is a slide, a set of swings, and a jungle gym. There is also a small trail with a few pull up bars and balance beams along the way. On weekends, the path fills with runners, all trying to get in one solid workout before returning to the mundane work place. Dean confides that before the Pulse, the park was much nicer. They even had a Merry-Go-Round looking thing that you could spin on until you puked. But after the Pulse, money was spent elsewhere. Little towns like this aren't impacted as much as big ones. Dean says the big towns have sectors and police everywhere and you aren't treated like a person, you're treated like a statistic. Alec doesn't let them know that he's used to being a statistic and instead makes the appropriate shocked face that the boys seem to expect. No one notices he's faking.

When the boys leave him to run the trail, Alec just stares at the playground. There's a mix of kids. School's out so there's everything from four year olds with carefully doting mothers, to high school kids covertly smoking pot by the trees. He doesn't like the smell of the weed. It's too thick and sweet for his sharply tuned senses, and it makes him a little dizzy, so he avoids the trees. No one is running formations. There aren't any drills. Instead he see's two little girls singing to lump of plastic wrapped in a blanket. A closer look informs Alec that the plastic is shaped in the form of an infant. A couple kids are hanging upside-down on the jungle gym. One of the children is a little girl in a skirt who is flashing her pink and white polka dotted panties to the world. Alec doesn't know much about playground etiquette, but he assumes that the showing of underwear is frowned upon. He continues to scope the area, but there's nothing obvious to do. No one is even playing sports! Everyone is engaging in games without clear rules. Not wanting to let his discomfort show, he chooses to sit on a swing and push himself backwards and forwards.

There are two kids swinging by him. A blonde girl with a cast on her left arm looks to be about his age, and there's a kid with orangish red hair swinging on his left. The boy looks to be about six, and judging by the way some of the other kids are eyeing him, he's definitely not the most popular kid on the playground. Alec's theory is confirmed when an older boy stalks up to the orange haired kid and shoves him.

"Hey weirdo, why don’t you run home to mommy? I want to swing."

The little kid's lower lip trembles but he doesn't back down, "Lemme alone Frank! There’s other swings."

Frank just grins, "but I want that one."

The beefy kid proceeds to yank the scrawny one out of his swing. The little kid is full out crying by now. Alec watches impartially. The pecking order has to be established one way or another, and fights are an easy way to prove you can lead a unit. Interfering is seen as a display of weakness, and anyone who tries to inform an adult is often severely punished, both by their peers and by their handlers. Manticore is training soldiers, not babies.

The blonde girl jumps off of her swing and punches the older boy. "Back the hell off Frank."

Frank doesn't seem to appreciate this and quickly pushes her hard enough that she lands on her butt, hard. When she reaches back with her broken hand to catch herself, tears spring to her eyes. She swipes the back of her good hand against her eyes and smears the tears away. The older boy stands smugly over her and Alec is pleased when she kicks him in the crotch, grinning as he yelps.

"I said, back the hell off Frank."

He growls in her face, "I'm gonna get you Kara. You're a little bitch and everyone knows it."

Despite her red eyes she manages to effect a bored tone, "Whatever. Go home Frankie."

With a muttered curse he hobbles off, still clutching his groin. The orange haired kid hugs Kara until she pushes him off with irritation. "Mike, stop being such a target and you won't get picked on. Leave me alone."

The little kid shuffles off as well, and then its just the two of them. She glares at Alec from her sprawl in the dirt. "Why didn’t you help?"

He shrugs, "Wasn't my business."

"Who says that? 'It wasn't my business.' Bullshit. You see a little kid getting picked on, you make it your business!"

Alec peers down at her, "You're a little kid. Smaller than Frank. Doesn't that mean you shouldn't have messed with him? And you curse a lot."

Her eyes flash with fury and she jumps up, shoving him backwards off of the swing. "You're an idiot!"

He's confused, but doesn't want to show weakness, so he attacks right back. He grabs her by the t-shirt and with spittle flying, he yells in her face. "You're a stupid little kid!"

When she punches him the familiar taste of copper floods his mouth. Thanks to his lifetime of training he is able to give her a warning jab on the chin without hesitation. The blow stuns her but doesn't knock her out. His execution of the move is textbook perfect. Of course that's when his brothers come back from their run. He barely has time to register their presence before Sam has him grabbed around the waist and hoisted off the ground. Dean kneels by the girl, checking her bleeding lip. Both of them seemed pissed.

Sam shakes him, "What the hell Alec? You don't hit girls!"

Alec wonders if his brain is banging the inside of his skull, "She hit me first!"

"That's no excuse." Sam retorts.

"Get off of me!" Kara tries to bat Dean's hands away. "He hits like a girl. Didn't even hurt."

Now that stings Alec's pride, "You're a liar! That's gonna bruise and you know it!"

Kara's fist closes around a small rock and she flings it at him, barely avoiding hitting Sam as well. "You look like a girl! You're ugly and stupid and I hate you!"

Alec wiggles in Sam's arms, trying to get back on the ground to retaliate. Sam just shakes him again. Alec knows he could extract himself from Sam's grip easily but he doesn't want to hurt his brother.

Kara starts to pick up another rock before Dean pries it out of her fist. "C'mon, stop it. Nice little girls don't throw things."

She kicks at him, "Get away from me! You know what? Fuck this. I’m going home." She flipped a bird in Alec's direction, "See ya later, princess!"

Alec screams towards her back, "Only stupid people cuss as much as you do!"

That's when Sam decides to let Alec go. He abruptly drops his younger brother, letting the kid fall on his ass. When Alec looks up at him with a wounded expression, Sam just rolls his eyes. "Whatever, don't give me that look. You deserved it. You don't hit girls."

Alec repeats, "But she hit me first."

Dean sides with Sam, "Doesn't matter. You don't hit girls."

In hindsight Alec sees where his brothers are coming from, but at the time all he can feel is deeply betrayed by how disappointed they were in him. The two of them barely speak to Alec all day, and when they get home John changes his mind about Alec going to the park. Everyone is mad at him and he doesn't understand why. At Manticore it didn't matter. You hit girls all the time, and they hit back. It was just the way things were. It wasn't personal. Eventually they all get over it, but Alec never forgets how much it stung to have his family mad at him. For the first time in a long time he missed Manticore. At least things made sense there.

Next story in this series - "More Winchester Family Secrets"

Comments

( 40 comments — Leave a comment )
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littlepunkryo
Aug. 27th, 2008 01:32 am (UTC)
Oh, poor Alec. Some things just don't transfer from Manticore to the real world. The boys should think about that before they're so mean to him!!

That last line kinda got me - Alec could very easily be another Ben!
lori_leaf
Aug. 27th, 2008 01:48 am (UTC)
I don't think the boys were trying to be mean but it's easy to forget that Alec hasn't been taught not to hit girls.

The last line was definitely a nod to Ben. *g*

Thanks for the feedback, hon!
littlestarling
Aug. 27th, 2008 01:44 am (UTC)
Poor little guy!

I like that little girl! She's cool.
lori_leaf
Aug. 27th, 2008 01:50 am (UTC)
Shea! I miss you!

I like the little girl too. *g* She's scrappy. Thanks for commenting!
saberivojo
Aug. 27th, 2008 02:09 am (UTC)
I liked this. I liked that Alec is just doing what he was trained to do. He is looking at everything skewed, through Manticore's eyes. That is how is should be.

I like just as much that Sam and Dean don't care. Alec is their brother, they are not going to let him get away with hitting a girl. That is that.

It is a learning process, and Alec is smart and will learn.

I think it is funny that Alec disapproves of cussing.

I like that little girl too. She is a charmer.

Edited 'cause I can't spell and can't leave misspelled words alone.

Edited at 2008-08-27 02:11 am (UTC)
lori_leaf
Aug. 27th, 2008 02:35 am (UTC)
I hate typos too and obsessively want to fix them. *g*

I agree that Alec will learn. He's quick to adapt. Alec likes cussing in moderation, especially if it's unique cursing like "colder then a witch's tit" or "fucking shit eater!" You get points for creativity. But he was surprised to see a little kid using the same two or three words every few sentences. I'm sure he would have thought Kara was much cooler if she called him a "bitch's whelp" or something.
kara_winchester
Aug. 27th, 2008 02:15 am (UTC)
OMG!!!! YOU NAMED A CHARACTER AFTER ME! AND SHE'S A BADASS TOO!!!

Lol, I don't know if you really named her after me, and it's ok if you didn't :) But I agree with Shea, she is an awesome little girl! Really, this whole fic was awesome. I especially liked this line:

Alec doesn't know much about playground etiquette, but he assumes that the showing of underwear is frowned upon.

Apparently I shouldn't drink anything while I read your fics, because that line made me snort tea out of my nose :) GREAT job, sweetie!
lori_leaf
Aug. 27th, 2008 02:40 am (UTC)
Honestly, it wasn't intentional... but we can totally pretend I did it on purpose! *g* I liked the little kid too. I kinda wanted to bring her back for another story, but I just don't see John letting the boys go back to the park after that.

As for playground etiquette, I was totally the little girl flashing everyone as a kid. I have no idea WHY my parents thought it was a good idea to put me in dresses because I certainly didn't sit nicely and play tea party. I was the kid attempting to do cartwheels and dangling from monkey bars. *g* Sorry I made you snort tea though.

And you get to hear my random bit of news because you just happened to comment and it's not worth making a whole post about. I just killed a roach! Okay so this wouldn't be huge for most people, but I have this insane phobia of roaches. I'm like a crazy person when it comes to them. So the fact that I killed one is HUGE! Okay so maybe I screamed "die, die, die! Die fucker! DIE!" while spraying it with roach spray, as though yelling at it will convince it to go ahead and die... but STILL, I killed it. *is proud*

There, that's my random bit of news. Thanks for being the person unlucky enough to talk to me right after it happened. *g*
atalantaj
Aug. 27th, 2008 02:38 am (UTC)
Nice story. You did a good job of showing us things through Alec's eye. I liked his observations about the park and all it's inhabitants. I thought his view on interfering during fights, how it's a sign of weakness was particularly interesting and incredibly fitting for how he was raised.

I like this series. It's neat to read about someone experiencing things for the first time. Alec got to experience his family, a real family that loves him, doesn't just use him disappointed in him for the first time and God knows that's an awful feeling. My sympathies go to the character, but it's cool to see him grow and learn from everything.
lori_leaf
Aug. 27th, 2008 02:43 am (UTC)
Alec definitely comes from a different world then most of the characters in this series. The sad thing is, even after disappointing his family, he still doesn't completely understand why they were mad. It just doesn't make sense to him. But now he knows the consequence for hitting girls, and he definitely won't be doing that again any time soon. Thanks for commenting!
luvspnl
Aug. 27th, 2008 05:20 am (UTC)
Goodness, I laughed so hard at this, start coughing and then promptly started laughing again when I stopped. Ah, I so needed that after my epic battle with technology today. I loved all the little observations Alec made, made me sad that he thought of himself, or rather realized himself I guess, as a statistic buff still pulled off the 'shock'. And I like that Dean and Sam didn't like that he had hit a girl and didn't take any excuse. Though, I got to go with Alec there, I was the kind of girl that hit back and got hit, so I never understood the double standards. Anyways, lovely fic! Loved seeing Alec trying to fit in and understand and John trying to make him more normal. :)
lori_leaf
Aug. 27th, 2008 10:25 pm (UTC)
I'm glad this made you laugh! The funny thing is I'm not trying to be funny. I guess I can't squash my inner smart ass. *g* Someday I'll write a chapter where I let my inner smart ass run free.

Thanks for the great comment!
smokeyhorse
Aug. 27th, 2008 05:43 am (UTC)
That was AWESOME. Adorable and heartbreaking at the same time. Poor Alec is only doing what he's been trained to do - he has no idea how to act around "normal" kids. Love the Alec POV, too and how he's analyzing his retaliation and patting himself on the back for a job well done. I kinda wanna shake Sam and Dean, though, because the kid's only been outta Manticore for a couple weeks and obviously that training isn't going to go away overnight. Unless they don't actually know what he's been through?

That last paragraph - GUHHH. GUHHHHHHHHHHHHH. I wanna go hug Alec! Nice little shout out to Ben there at the end. :-)

And the little girl - LMAO! She was freakin' awesome!

This totally cheered me up when I so needed it. Thanks!
lori_leaf
Aug. 27th, 2008 10:29 pm (UTC)
Your icon is awesome! *g*

I think I showed you the secret this was based on. I wanted to add more flirting and less fighting, but the muse didn't cooperate.

Sam and Dean have a vague idea of what Alec's life was like in Manticore. John isn't that much more informed. They have some files from when they rescued Alec from the school, but Alec hasn't really sat down and had a share and care session with them. I doubt he ever will either. He's still at the point where a week in isolation for an untied shoelace, is still "normal". It's everyone else who's strange.

I couldn't resist the shout out to Ben. And I have a weakness for little girls who get into fights. *g* I'm glad you enjoyed the story and it cheered you up! Thanks for commenting!
(no subject) - smokeyhorse - Aug. 27th, 2008 10:37 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - lori_leaf - Aug. 27th, 2008 10:47 pm (UTC) - Expand
astrangerfate
Aug. 27th, 2008 02:24 pm (UTC)
Poor Alec! Totally easy mistake. Girl attacks you, of course you defend yourself! I'm so on his side. :P Thanks for sharing!
lori_leaf
Aug. 27th, 2008 10:30 pm (UTC)
I'm kind of on Alec's side too. But for Sam and Dean you don't hit a girl... unless the girl is a demon. Heck Bela constantly did horrible things to the boys, but despite threats of killing her, they never even smacked her. It's just ingrained in them. Don't hit girls.

Thanks for commenting!
(Deleted comment)
lori_leaf
Aug. 27th, 2008 10:32 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I personally side with Alec on this, but for Sam and Dean it's a mortal sin to hit a girl. If the girl is a demon, all bets are off. And the Winchesters definitely have their pecking order. Alec is just more accepting of the physical side of gaining respect by any means nessisary.

Thanks for the feedback!
minx999
Aug. 28th, 2008 12:42 am (UTC)
That has to be rough for Alec, trying to assimilate to rules that are not only utterly foreign to him but just don't make logical sense either. Nice job with this. :)
lori_leaf
Aug. 28th, 2008 12:45 am (UTC)
Yep, we have lots of cultural rules like "don't hit girls" and "boy's don't cry" and "dessert is eaten AFTER dinner". Things that don't nessisarily hold logical value outside of cultural values. Alec is trying...

Thanks, hon!
winterda
Aug. 28th, 2008 12:44 am (UTC)
Awe, poor Alec. That was a totally innocent mistake on his part. From Alec's POV, I completely understand. I can just see him standing there with his little head titled to the side like 'why not hit a girl when they are hitting me back?'. But I can see Sam and Dean side of it too because John would so teach his boys to not hit non-demon-y girls.

And that little girl, from the moment you called her 'Kara', all I kept picturing was a mini-Starkbuck from BSG. She's so reminded me of her and was excellent.
lori_leaf
Aug. 28th, 2008 12:47 am (UTC)
Ding, ding, ding! You win! Kara was completely and utterly based on Kara Thrace. In fact originally I had the bully call her "Kara Thrace" but my beta said it threw her out of the story, so I decided to make it a more subtle reference. I'm glad you caught it! *g*

And yeah, Alec doesn't quite understand the new rules yet, especially the ones that don't make logical sense.

Thanks for commenting!
dragondie
Aug. 28th, 2008 01:08 pm (UTC)
It's hard when everybody changes the rules on you. Also, Kara was frikken sweet.
lori_leaf
Aug. 28th, 2008 01:38 pm (UTC)
*beam* Thank you! And yeah, poor Alec's confused.
twasadark
Aug. 29th, 2008 06:43 am (UTC)
Awwww! Poor confused Alec! That little girl was a pill!
lori_leaf
Sep. 3rd, 2008 08:02 pm (UTC)
*g* Thanks!
redrikki
Aug. 30th, 2008 05:42 pm (UTC)
You've done a really excellent job in this establishing Alec's mind-set as a weird blend of 10-year-old boy, solider, and alien. It's always fun to read and tricky to write a POV looking at our culture from an entirely different angle. I liked the shout-outs to Ben and BSG. Kara rocked.
lori_leaf
Sep. 3rd, 2008 08:03 pm (UTC)
I really like exploring Alec's head space simply because it's so different then mine. And I couldn't resist Ben or BSG. *g* I have a weakness.

Thanks for the feedback!
serena64
Sep. 3rd, 2008 06:45 pm (UTC)
I loved your Kara character. I've always been wary of the "don't hit girls" rule, as some girls take advantage of it to hit boys, assuming they will be immune from retaliation, but Kara wasn't like that. You could see that she was totally willing to take Alec on on a one-to-one basis.
Some more interesting insights into Alec's character. Poor thing. He doesn't know the rules for the outside world at all. Your stories are making me think how damaged the older Alec must have been in the DA series, but simply that he was old enough and well trained enough to be able to hide it (slightly better).
lori_leaf
Sep. 3rd, 2008 08:09 pm (UTC)
I really believe that older Alec was profoundly damaged but very good at hiding it. Plus because he was older he had time to build a protective shell. I think the persona Alec projected in the series, wasn't really Alec at all. It was just the "safe" parts of Alec. The ones he didn't think he'd get hurt showing. I'm not saying the persona was a lie, it just wasn't the best representation of who he is.

Thanks for your comment hon!
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