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Not a Penelope (SPN Fic, PG-13)

Title: Not a Penelope
Author: paleogymnast
Fandom/Genre: Supernatural, Het (implied), Futurefic, Character Study
Characters: Lisa Braeden with mentions of Dean Winchester and Ben Braeden
Rating: PG-13
Word Count: 616
Warnings: none to speak of aside from major spoilers for 5.22
Spoilers: Up through 5.22
Disclaimer: Written for fun, not profit; anything you recognize belongs to Kripke, Warner Bros., et al.
A/N 1: This is the fourth in a series of seven fics my post-5.22 ‘verse. Can be read as a stand-alone.
A/N 2: Many thanks to Carlos, calamitycrow, and sleepwalker1015 for the beta and feedback!
A/N 3: In case it wasn't clear, the title refers to the Penelope of Greek Mythology, the wife of Odysseus who waited twenty years for her husband to return from the Trojan war (20 years in which she fought off and refused countless suitors while her husband um... shagged anything that moved).

Summary: Lisa was always a complete person. She didn't need anyone else to make her whole. That doesn't mean she doesn't take what—who—she wants when the opportunity presents itself.

Also available on: AO3
Or continue to read

Not a Penelope

She was never a Penelope, an incomplete woman—person—waiting, always waiting, for her man to come home. Oh no, hell no; Lisa never saw herself as the sort of person who was a half looking for a whole, missing the other part of her soul, or anything like that. She was content, happy, to go through life on her own, as her own person. She and Ben were fine together—great.

But that also didn’t mean she was opposed to sharing her home, her life, with someone… though the list of people she would’ve considered was never very long…

There was always something special about Dean. She never could have pinpointed it back when she first met him. Back then, he was just a very talented lay, barely grown, more boy than man. Later on, he was danger wrapped inside an enigma, with an air of fatalism about him. But no one had ever bonded with Ben the way Dean did, and Dean was the only person she ever met who seemed to take to both of them as they were, without trying (or wanting) to change them.

Lisa never expected to see him again. Hell, she was pretty sure he was preparing to die—she was right of course, she just didn’t know that back then. When he showed up on his second good-bye tour two years later, she knew enough to realize the entire world was probably screwed. After all, earthquakes and tornadoes and plagues and fires don’t just crop out of nowhere in clusters, not in a world where monsters exist. But the world didn’t end, and then he was back, and it was over. He wasn’t the same Dean, but there was still that—spark…

Lisa’s pretty sure he wonders if there was some sort of angelic intervention that got them together. At first she wondered the same about him. Well, not in those terms, ‘cause Lisa only found out about angels later, much later. But she used to wonder if there was something holding him in check, keeping him from imploding and falling apart and violently losing himself in a bottle. He’d been through so much, and yet he seemed so… functional. Lisa was waiting for the other shoe to drop.

She was more relieved than shocked when she found out Dean’s family—his cursed, long gone family—sort of had a tradition for this—losing everything, leaving heir old lives behind, starting over. His mom did it; his brother did it—a few times, apparently—and even his dad did it—with less success than the other two because he knew less, she finds out, but John Winchester had done it just the same. And Dean, well he knew, understood, more than anyone else in his family. He’d already lost himself in bottles and sex and pain before. He’s been there, done that. Lisa realizes this Dean is all burned out. He knows there’s no relief in those hollow vices. So she watches as he waits and struggles to learn, hoping to find the missing pieces of himself without losing any more along the way.

Lisa’s always been complete. So has Ben. Dean is half a soul, torn and drifting. But he drifts to them. To her. And she doesn’t have to, but she can. She doesn’t need to, but she wants. To share her abundance of completeness, wholeness, with him. It’s not out of a sense of debt, but bounty. It costs surprisingly little, but the reward is great. She gets to watch this boy-ghost grow, become whole. Lisa learns about herself by teaching him.

Lisa never needed anyone, but she is very happy with who she found.


( 23 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 13th, 2010 10:10 pm (UTC)
OMG this is totally awesome! I was reading it and going "yes, yes, yes!" This is why Lisa let Dean back in her life!

Thank you for this perfect character study!
Jun. 13th, 2010 10:37 pm (UTC)
Thank you!! *beams* I was so frigging fed up with all the Lisa bashing and writer bashing (and let's face it, the writers *do* frak up a significant part of the time especially when it comes to anything on Supernatural dealing with gender or race), but a lot of the wank and bitching just seemed to miss he point (well IMHO) anyway. So it was really, really important for me to try to get out what I thought was going on with Lisa if only for my own sanity. I am thrilled beyond words that someone else sees it too.:)

Of all the fics in this 'verse, this was the one I've been most nervous about posting (even more so than yesterdays, which heh, I just said Sam's in hell and not being tortured) or the one I'm posting tomorrow (which has other reasons people might balk at it). So thank you for sharing your thoughts and for reading it!! :D
Jun. 14th, 2010 01:48 am (UTC)
And she doesn’t have to, but she can. She doesn’t need to, but she wants. To share her abundance of completeness, wholeness, with him.

Oooh, I like that a lot.
Jun. 14th, 2010 01:53 am (UTC)
Thank you! I'm glad you liked it and thank you for reading!! :)
Jun. 14th, 2010 02:40 am (UTC)
YES! I almost saw Dean as a lost little boy when he showed up at Lisa's and you articulated that wonderfully here! Love this Lisa piece! Good work!
Jun. 14th, 2010 02:48 am (UTC)
Thank you! :) I'm really glad you love this and that I captured Dean's lostness. Thank you so much for reading!! :)
Jun. 14th, 2010 04:20 am (UTC)
I love it, it's simply perfect
Jun. 14th, 2010 04:39 am (UTC)
Thank you! I'm really glad you enjoyed it. Thanks for reading and for your comment!! :)
Jun. 14th, 2010 05:29 am (UTC)
this is amazing and probably one of the best Lisa POVs I've read
Jun. 14th, 2010 05:54 am (UTC)
Wow, thank you. I'm really glad you liked it. I have another story in this 'verse that's from a Lisa POV that will be up in a few days. :) Thank you for reading and for your lovely comment. :D
Jun. 14th, 2010 08:33 am (UTC)
You know, I never bought that Lisa was just waiting for Dean to return from The Kids Are Alright.


Works for me.
Jun. 14th, 2010 08:37 am (UTC)
You know, that idea never worked for me either, nor did it really seem to play with what we saw--Lisa seemed pretty damn shocked when Dean showed up in 99 Problems. I think she defnitely worried about him from that point on--because he was someone she cared about and valued as a person.

I'm glad this worked for you. :) Thanks so much for reading and commenting!! :D
Jun. 14th, 2010 09:34 am (UTC)
Thank you, just thank you. I'm happy there is someone who sees Lisa the way I do and could write her so beautifully. *mems*
Jun. 14th, 2010 03:10 pm (UTC)
Oh wow, thank you!! :) I'm thrilled that you liked this 'version of Lisa and thought this was beautifully written. Thanks so much for reading and commenting!! :D
Jun. 14th, 2010 10:14 am (UTC)
OH! So awesome. I like this, like lisa is a whole person but she would like to help someone other's boy-ghost grow up.

Thank you
Jun. 14th, 2010 03:11 pm (UTC)
Exactly. She cares about Dean because she understands him, and she doesn't need to or have to, but she can help him, and she enjoys that opportunity. :) Thanks so much for reading and commenting!! :D
Jun. 14th, 2010 02:02 pm (UTC)
Very well said. The second to the last paragraph has got to be the best thing I've read in any fandom.
Jun. 14th, 2010 03:12 pm (UTC)
Wow, really? Thank you. And thank you so much for reading this!! :D
Jun. 14th, 2010 03:18 pm (UTC)
Really. And I've been through a lot of fandoms. And those fandoms had their fair amount of good writers.

Keep up the good work. Hope to see more of your fics.
Jun. 14th, 2010 03:36 pm (UTC)
Well thank you very much. I hope you'll check out some of the other stuff I've written (assuming you haven't already). Everything other than the fic I just posted 5 minutes ago should be listed on my sticky fic post. :)
(Deleted comment)
Jun. 14th, 2010 03:13 pm (UTC)
*smishes* I'm glad kitty likes. I really liked that line too. I'm still a bit surprised I actually wrote that line... at work... on my lunch break no less. :D
Jun. 14th, 2010 06:13 pm (UTC)
That was beautiful. :)
Jun. 15th, 2010 04:53 am (UTC)
Thank you very much for reading and for your lovely comment!! :D
( 23 comments — Leave a comment )


Sad Dean

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