"Don't I know you?" Dean chokes out the words, but he's already pinned. The bastard is strong, and, okay, maybe he should have brought Sam along, but shapeshifters are tricky fuckers, and at least Dean knows if he's looking at himself, his brother isn't going to shoot him by accident if he's not here.
"You hunters," the shifter says. "Why won't you leave me alone?"
Dean tries to shrug. It's hard, with his face in the muck. "You monsters," he says. "Why do you go around killing people?"
The shifter growls, and Dean braces because he knows he's about to get hit, but when the jolt comes, it's not him that gets it. The shapeshifter is torn away from him, and he rolls in the opposite direction, and there's another man here, swinging a pipe, going after the monster.
Dean leaps to his feet, starts running after the other guy, who runs after the monster, but pulls up when the other guy stops.
There's a ditched skin on the ground. The other guy drops his pipe. "Damn." He looks back at Dean.
"I knew I knew you," Dean says, recognizing the face the shifter was wearing on it's original owner.
"Hey, Dean," Matt Pike says.
"So, you're a hunter."
Matt shrugs. "Switched from bugs to the supernatural after I met you guys. When I obsess, I really obsess."
"I see that." The walls of Matt's motel room are plastered with newspaper clippings, maps, drawings. There are devil's traps, sigils, enochian texts. "Been here a while?"
"Long enough. I've got this, if you wanna move on."
Dean shakes his head. "I owe this bastard. He made me eat sewer." He looks Matt up and down. "How long's it been? You grew up."
Matt grins. "And you got old."
"I could still kick your ass."
"I wasn't the one eating sewer."
This time, the shifter looks like Dean. This is why Dean left Sam at home, because the bastard is convincing.
Matt comes at Dean. The silver knife in Matt's hand glints in the moonlight, and it'll kill Dean just as easily as it would the shifter.
Matt smirks as he pulls his blow. He turns and throws the knife.
Takes the gloating shifter by surprise, hits him in the heart. He drops.
"See, I got this," Matt says, as he grins at Dean and thumps him on the back.
Dean breathes hard. "Jesus, kid. You're fast."
Matt passes Dean a beer, and then strips off his shifter-goop-stained shirt, tossing it toward the bathroom.
Dean can't help staring. Matt's covered in tattoos, anti-possession like Dean's, sigils like the ones on the walls, more enochian. A lot of enochian. "What are you hiding from?" Dean asks.
"Everything." Matt sits beside Dean on the only bed in the room, and he points at the left side of his chest. "Keeps demons out."
Dean nods. Pulls the neck of his t-shirt down to reveal his own anti-possession tattoo.
"Pretty." Matt smirks. His own is simpler, utilitarian. He points at the right side of his chest. "Keeps angels out." Drags his finger along the lines of enochian text covering his ribs. "Hides me from them."
"Right." Dean has those, too, but they're carved into his ribs. They're not visible on his skin. "Why are you hiding from angels?"
"Why are you?" Matt asks.
Dean doesn't know how he knows. "Long story."
"Same here." He rolls his shoulders, arches his neck.
Dean remembers a skinny kid. Now Matt is a grown man, with muscle gained from hunting and a confidence he didn't have before.
Matt looks Dean in the eye. "Ever get restless after a hunt?"
Dean knows that look, he knows what he's being asked. He could say no, get up, find his own room. He doesn't.
"Yeah. I guess I do."
Matt's lips twitch into a smile. He leans forward, ghosts his lips over Dean's, and then whispers in his ear.
"Then stay," he says.