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Author's Chapter Notes:
Pairing: implied Lena/Penny and Eden/Anne Marie
State: Hawaii (for spn_50states)
Disclaimer: Jo and Ash belong to the creators of Supernatural; Lena, Penny, Eden, Anne Marie, and JJ belong to the creators of Blue Crush

Ash is a freaking genius.

She doesn’t know how he’s done it – she doesn’t want to know – but somehow he’s not only snagged a job out from under all the other hunters, out from under her mother, but he got her a flight to Hawaii, a perfect fake i.d., and pretty much everything she needs.

The airport is beautiful, bright and open, and there’s a garden in it, an actual garden right there in the middle of all the passengers and delayed flights and extra-strong security. Not so hot security, really, because no one’s batted an eye at all her fake information.

Jo shrugs her bag higher up her shoulder and follows the signs for baggage claim. She doesn’t have any more luggage, just her carry-on, but that’s where she’s supposed to meet the local she’s come to help.

There’s a woman waiting there, pretty, sunbleached hair with dark roots. She’s sitting next to the first luggage carousel, perched on the back of a chair, her feet in the seats, but no one seems bothered by her unorthodox seating.

Everyone else looks to be families or couples, so Jo angles toward her. When she gets close enough, she can see a small sign dangling from the woman’s left hand, Jo’s name scrawled on it in difficult to read handwriting.

Jo stands in front of her, waiting to be acknowledged. She realizes the woman is wearing headphones, slender little things which fit inside her ears, and the cord trails down into her shirt, into the shadows between her breasts.

She has to drag her eyes away from all that tanned cleavage – damn, sometimes she wishes she looked like that – and when she looks up, the woman is watching her and smiling.

“Hey, Jo, right?” Her voice is too loud over the music Jo can’t hear. She nods, and the woman bounces off the chair and tugs the buds out of her ears. “I’m Lena. Thank you so much for coming.”

“You’re welcome.” Jo shifts her weight from one foot to the other. She wants this, wants the work, wants to hunt, but here, now, faced with her first solo run, she’s suddenly terrified she’s going to fuck things up for this woman who needs her. “So Ash didn’t give me many details, what’s your problem, exactly?”

The smile drops off Lena’s face. “Come on,” she says, and heads for the door. “I’ll tell you on the way.”

“On the way where?”

“The place where Penny disappeared.”


Penny is Lena’s best friend’s little sister. Lena keeps a picture of her in her wallet, and, from the looks of their house, they only sleep in one of the four beds. The relationships are complicated, twisted, and Jo’s not sure she’s comfortable with any of it.

She tells herself she’s there to find the girl and get out. She’s not gonna judge.

It’s a lot harder than she thought. Hunters are pretty conservative types; they’ll save your ass, maybe, but you don’t see a lot of the guys making out or anything.

Lena takes her to the beach and leaves her with JJ, one of the guys who saw Penny last. He’s got crazy curly hair and a body which rocks her world. Pretty much all the surfers are hot as hell, girls included.

“So what were you doing?” she asks.

JJ doesn’t look at her. He stares out at the ocean and runs his fingers along his surfboard. She’s seen enough talismans to know why he does it.

“We were out there to party, you know, have fun. Just a good time.”

“Yeah. Sounds like fun.” She digs her toes into the sand. “Did you go there often?”

“Nah. We only surf North Shore most of the time, we mostly party over in Hale’iwa, house parties, but Penny’s been – ”

“She’s been what?” She reaches for his arm, but he leans away from her and pulls his board closer. Jo drops her hand back into her lap. “It might be important.”

“She’s been all loco haole lately, all crazy. Ever since her sister left, nothing’s wild enough for her. Same old parties not good enough for her now. She’s okay if Lena’s around, but if she’s not – Penny wants to break things.”

“What things? Rules?”

JJ snorts and looks at her real fast. “The whole world.”

“So Penny wanted to go out there?”

“Yeah, she said she found this old building, thought we could party inside without being seen.”

“What did you do?”

He shrugs. “Normal things, smoking, drinking, everyone was dancing. It was packed, word gets out, parties get crashed. She was right there for a long time, and then she was just gone. I figured she was somewhere else, somewhere in the crush of people. She does that sometimes, just fades away into the crowd. But then she was still gone the next day.”

“Did anyone see her leave?”

“Lena’s asked everyone more than once. No one saw anything. She was there with us, moving through the dancers, and then she was gone.”


Jo knows she probably shouldn’t drink. She’s been there a whole day and has no idea where to start. No one knows anything, there’s no activity, supernatural or not, at the stone building near the beach, and she really wants to call her mom for help.

Instead she lets Lena talk her into sitting on the lanai, as Lena calls it, drinking beer.

“So why did you call me and not Penny’s sister?”

Lena takes a long drink. “Anne Marie doesn’t know she’s gone,” she says at last. “I don’t want her to know. She’s got enough to worry about.”

“Like what?”

“She’s a pro surfer, she’s flying all around the world. That’s stressful, being away from home so much.” She taps the bottom of the bottle against the inside of her thigh. “I think she feels guilty, sometimes, leaving Penny like she does. Her mom cut out years ago. It’s not the same thing, she only does what she has to do, but – she gets too deep in her own fears. Besides, I take care of my girl.”

Her smile fades fast and she stares into the distance, but Jo’s pretty sure she doesn’t see anything.

She understands that. She knows what it’s like to lose someone she loves.

“So Anne Marie surfs. There’s another one, though, Eden?”

“Yeah, Eden.” Lena sighs, drinks, and then tilts her head toward Jo. “Eden’s here with me most of the time, she makes boards for some of the women on Anne Marie’s circuit, but she got lonely and took off for awhile, selling her boards and taking care of Anne Marie.”

“What do you do?”

“This and that.” She shrugs. “Sometimes I give surf lessons. Sometimes I work at the hotels. Mostly I pay the bills when they come in, and surf, and make sure that once in awhile Penny eats something which doesn’t have sugar as the main ingredient.”

“Sounds like you’re a housewife.”

“It’s not a bad life.” Lena points her bottle at Jo. “They’re my girls, my family. Penny’s only got one year left of high school and she’s gonna finish if I have to drag her to all her classes. That’s my job, making sure she’s okay. Anne Marie’s out living her dream, she doesn’t need to worry about Penny all the time. Eden’s pretty good, too, perfecting her boards and making sure Anne Marie’s happy. That’s probably her dream.”

“What about you? What about your dreams? Shouldn’t you get to have a life?”

“Surfing, playing my music, taking care of my girl, that’s my life. That’s my dream. It’s simple, but it’s mine. It’s what I want, all I want. My parents didn’t understand that.” She gives a little crooked grin. “You don’t understand that either.”

Maybe. Or maybe she gets it better than she thinks.

“What did your parents want you to do?”

“Hunt.” Jo’s taking a drink when she says it, and she chokes on the beer. It sticks in her throat, threatening to drown her. Finally she coughs it out and sucks in lots of air. “How’d you think I knew who to call for help?”

She shrugs. She hadn’t really thought about the details.

“Your parents were hunters?”

“My mom was, most of her life. Dad knew what she did, but he didn’t help, he mostly stayed home and took care of me. If he’d done that more, he might still be alive. If Mom would have retired when she had me instead of just going part time, she might be, too.” Lena leans her head against the back of the couch and closes her eyes.

There’s not a goddamn thing Jo can say to that. She raises her bottle in a silent toast to the fallen – too many parents dead and too many children left behind.


“Hi, Mom.”


She sounds tired, and sad, and a little lost, like Jo stole all the life from her and all that’s left is a shell drifting through life. They don’t even fight anymore about Jo’s hunting. She misses it.

The silence stretches for a long time. Too long, if she was paying for the call from her own money.

“What did you need?”

Jo sighs. “I just wanted to,” she hesitates, and finds she can’t say all the things she’s thinking, “say hi, and let you know I’m safe.”

“I’m glad.”

She can hear words in the next silence, things like “I miss you” and “Why don’t you come home” but there’s no point in any of it, not really.

“Bye, Mom,” she says, and hangs up before she says, “I love you.”


“Howzit, Jo.”

JJ’s dripping water all over the floor, but most of the people in the restaurant are surfers, at least from the boards on all the cars outside. He hitches up his board shorts, looks at her, and then glances away real fast.

“What’s up, JJ?”

“You said I should tell you if I remembered anything else weird about Penny,” he says, his words coming out in a rush. “I remember.”

He hesitates so long she finishes her food and he still hasn’t said it.

“What is it?” she prompts and tries to meet his eyes.

He’s shaken up about something, she can tell that much.

“Penny, for a couple days, she keeps talking about this dog,” he says just as fast. “Some big black dog, following her around.”

“Okay.” There are lots of strays around, even she, a stranger, knows it.

“No one else ever saw it.”

That changes things.


Jo isn’t some super smart guy good enough to get into M.I.T., but she knows a thing or two about research. She’ll never tell anyone, but that’s the one thing she misses about school, all the promise of answers in the library.

Plus Ash taught her a thing or two about online research, so it only takes a couple days to narrow down the legends. She runs them past Lena, who does all the talking to the locals, they open up to her more; after all, she belongs in Hawaii and Jo has already been made quite aware she doesn’t.

Lena makes sure she gets her answers, but they don’t really help at all, by the time Jo puts it all together. She could have all the knowledge in the world and this would still be weird, what with Penny’s big black dog being the ghost of a fallen demigod.

And to think, she once thought life couldn’t get weirder than a steady stream of hunters in the bar and monsters knocking on the back door, calling out her dad.


“You’ve got to be kidding me. They beat him with prayers?”

Lena shrugs. For someone whose girl is missing, she’s far too laid back. “That’s how the legend goes.”

“How is that supposed to help me?” Jo twists her knife against the tabletop, scouring a small line across the wood.

“I don’t know, I’m just telling you what you wanted to know. Isn’t that you’re job, putting all the pieces together? Figuring out fact from fiction?”

Jo stares at her. “Why isn’t this your job, too? Your mom was a hunter, why aren’t you?”

Lena presses her lips together and looks away, out the window. They can see the ocean, the beach crowded with tourists, surfers dotting the waves like colorful confetti. She doesn’t say anything for a long time, and Jo grinds the knife into the wood; she doesn’t care if it dulls the tip.

“Yeah, okay, my mom was a hunter. She worked hard her whole life, and what did she get? No appreciation, a police record, and a nasty, painful death. You think I want that? Hell no.”

“How can you turn your back on your family? It’s what you were born to do, follow in your parent’s footsteps, hunt things, save people. How can you ignore that?”

“Because it’s not me!” Lena’s hand spasms and she thrusts it under the table, out of sight. “That’s not me,” she says again, softer. “I’m not a hunter, I don’t want to kill things. I just want to be happy. I just want my friends to be safe.”

“How can they be if you won’t protect them?”

“How can I have friends if I’m a hunter? I saw what my mom had, which was nothing. She had no one but my dad and me, she didn’t dare have friends, because they were a liability. She barely had me, I spent more time with my grandparents than anywhere else, and after they died, she left me at home with dad. And look what having him did to her – it got her killed, and the love of her life, too. Why should I want that?”

“If you were good, you could keep them safe.”

“No.” Lena shakes her head. “If I was perfect, I could keep them safe all the time, but I’m not. No one is, and I’m not willing to risk it. Eden and Anne Marie and Penny, they’re worth too much to me. I’m not going to put them in danger just to save some stranger’s life.”

“That’s selfish.”

“Maybe.” She shrugs and puts both hands flat on the table. “I don’t care if it is. That’s me.”

“But they’re not safe now, Penny’s not safe.”

Lena’s face falls. “I know. That’s why you’re here. I’m taking care of them, okay, I called in help when I needed it. So why don’t you get to fixing things and then they’ll be safe again.”

“Do you think she’s still alive?”

“Oh, god.” Lena’s expression crumples and she buries her face against her arms. “She has to be okay, she just has to.”


“It’s not an abandoned building.” Lena gasps for air, she’s obviously ran the whole way to find Jo.


She says it again, “It’s not an abandoned building. It’s a heiau.” Then, when Jo doesn’t say anything, “A temple.”

Jo can’t stop her smile and doesn’t even try.

She has a plan.


The bones are buried beneath some of the cracked stones which form a sort of roofless three-walled patio on one side of the temple. It takes her hours to dig them out, even with Lena’s help, and before they even start, heavy black clouds cover the sky and block out the sun.

One of them looks like a dog, and she’s shaken up enough she hesitates for a long time before she begins to dig. Halfway through, the sky opens up, and by the time she’s done, she’s soaked and chilled and half-drowned by the rain.

She’s still not sure how a demigod dies, or why it has bones, but they’re definitely not human or canine but something in between. She salts them and burns them, protecting the flames with her body while they’re small and then with a tarp she and Lena hold over the grave.

They glow blue and then black and it’s smokier than any fire she’s ever seen. It clings when she breathes it in, fills her lungs, seeps into her bloodstream, and she feels light-headed and animalistic.

Jo wants to run and hunt and eat flesh.

She pours more salt into the flames and squeezes shut her eyes so she doesn’t see how tempting Lena looks, highlighted by the fire, how tasty.

When the bones are just ash, covered in a fresh layer of salt, the rain stops and the sun comes out again. It’s practically a movie, ridiculous and cheesy, a rainbow arcing across the sky.

Of course, it is Hawaii, where movie special effects are real.

It fades slow and when it’s gone she looks over at Lena; she’s staring at the temple and there, standing in the doorway, is a young woman with long hair in tiny, messy braids. She’s dirty and dazed, but she’s alive.

Lena throws her arms around her and Jo looks away.


Let us teach you to surf, they say, and coax her into the water.

They’re still out at the end of the day. Jo lays back on her board and closes her eyes as the light fades and the sun sinks into the water. She’s not very good, it’s a lot harder than it looks, and her muscles are shaky, her body drained.

It feels good, though, to have worked so hard.

Lena says something – she can’t hear the words, only the low drone of her voice – and Penny laughs.

Yeah, it feels good.


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