Up close, the tower is taller than he'd thought--and in worse repair. Whole stones are missing in places, and the door at the foot of it has collapsed into a pile of rotted boards. At least two of the surrounding cluster of storage huts have lost their roofs entirely. The entire compound breathes an air of long abandonment.
"Doesn't look so good, chief," Benny says. "I'd be just as happy to just keep going, see if we can permenantly shake my brothers."
"Me too," Dean sighs, but slithers down from the horse anyway. "I'll be fast as I can, and if Sam's here, he's worth five of them." The ground is unpleasantly squishy beneath his naked feet.
"We'll be ready and waiting." Benny pats the horse's flank and gets an ear-twitch in reply.
Well. Nothing for it, then, so he grits his teeth and refushes to think of rats, and enters the tower--carefully skirting around the pile of rotting wood that partly blocks the entrance. Inside, it's dark and cool and damp and smells of things left sitting for too long; the complete lack of windows means the only light comes from the random missing stones. There are piles of leaves in small drifts all along the edge of the otherwise-empty room, and great stone slabs jutting out from the walls in an enormous spiralling staircase. A few posts here and there suggest a now-defunct rail of some sort, but Dean wouldn't bet his life on on any of the survivors either.
He's tentative for the first few steps, but despite appearances they feel solid, so he starts to take them two at a time, rabbit curled into one arm and his other hand on the wall *just in case*--which is the only reason he doesn't fall straight down when one of the stairs simply isn't there. It takes a frantric scramble for him to keep enough momentum to slam into the next stair up, which involves smashing both his shins against the stone and leaves him briefly huddled into a ball of absolute misery (and rabbit).
After that he takes them one at a time, at what feels like a crawl as he tests each step for safety. By the time he finally makes it to the cramped door at the to, he's half out of his skin from anxiety over just how long it's taking. He keeps expecting to hear Benny's shout for backup, or apology as he has to make his escape.
But there's only silence when he opens the door and steps out into what must have once been the watchman's rooms. They're empty, of course, and from the dust Dean's the first person to visit in a decade or more.