Psychotically irrationally erotically codependent brothers. PIE.
Yep. Zachariah was right about that one, although the erotically part was all on Dean.
Dean finished his slice of warmed pecan pie with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and pushed the plate away, signaling for more coffee from the waitress. He’d had two slices and was more than full, except where it mattered.
Sam was at the library, and Dean had finished interrogating the witnesses, so he was indulging in his favorite past-time, pie.
Dean loved pie. Sure it was tasty, and growing up it had always been a treat John had let the boys share, a little bit of happiness before they moved out on another job.
He’d always laughed at wee Sammy getting sticky hands and cheeks whenever he’d try to eat his portion. Laughter and syrup messy little kid kisses and washing hands and faces together in the restroom before John told them it was time to hit the road. Both boys loved pie, it came to be a happy memory before things changed.
Before Sammy got chubby and stopped eating his pie and wanting grilled chicken and salads. Before Dean realized the feelings he had for his little brother were not exactly brotherly. Before
Sammy Sam grew taller than Dean and filled out, all that firm muscle wrapped over golden skin that Dean could never…
Dean never stopped eating pie, though. It changed from a happy memory of shared laughter to a necessity, filling the space where his heart ached with longing. Pie was warm and comforting and sweet, just like Sam. It was familiar and felt like home, just like Sam. People loved pie, like people loved Sam. Like he loved Sam.
Dean was always getting teased about his love for pie. He only saw it as an expression of what he couldn’t say to his little brother. “Don’t forget the pie,” meant the same thing as, “don’t forget me, Sam, please don’t forget me.”
How did he even let it get to this point. Pie can’t rectify the feelings in his heart. Pie isn’t going to love him back. And honestly, he’s tired of asking Sam to bring him pie, because he’s the only one that gets the underlying meaning, and the aching never stops.
One time that still wrenches his soul Dean had asked Sam to bring him pie, and then Sam had received a knife in his back, dying in Dean’s arms. He really should have stopped asking after that point.
Things that Dean should have stopped asking or doing could fill a book though. That’s the life of being a Winchester. Plus, it was pie. And pie had always made him feel better. It made loving Sam in a way he really shouldn’t and not having that type of love returned a tad more bearable. So he ate his feelings. So what?
After a 12 hour day on the road they stopped for the night. Once acclimated to another typical roadside motel with hideous décor, Sam went to make the usual food run. He actually hesitated at the door, waiting for Dean’s, “Don’t forget the pie!” and Sam just rolled his eyes before grinning and heading out.
A knock at the door had Dean breaking out of his reverie, pulling his gun before undoing the latch, expecting Sam, yet always fearing the worst. Thankfully it was Sam, arms full of bags and a six pack of beer.
Dean began unpacking the food, immediately enjoying the smell of the local diner take-out and stopped short when he pulled out the large plastic container with dessert.
It was a large piece of butter cake with fudgy chocolate frosting. Again.
“Really, Sam?” Dean plopped the cake down on the counter, annoyance and something else Sam couldn’t quite make out plain on Dean’s face.
“It’s cake, Sam.”
“Cake, pie, what’s the difference?” And Sam reached over to look at the piece of cake, not understanding the complete sadness that washed over Dean at that question, the annoyance having given way to an almost sense of despair.
“Nothing, Sam, just…nothing.” Dean jammed his hands in his pockets and backed away, mumbling under his breath.
“Dean, c’mon man, tell me. You hate cake that much? I got the wrong flavor? What’s gotten into you? It’s dessert, like we’ve had countless times in diners across the country and I don’t see-“
Dean snapped then, he couldn’t even hold it back. Years of emotion just ready to spill over, his green eyes burning with anger and frustration.
“No, Sam. You don’t see. How could you? You don’t see what it means, you never will. This is cake. It isn’t pie. It’s not pie, and it’s not the same damn thing!” Dean slammed his fist onto the counter and walked out of the motel room, gasping for breath, knowing Sam was going to come running after him. Jesus Christ.
Dean tried to stop the tears, tried to lock down his feelings for the millionth time, and how the hell was he going to explain flipping his shit over this to Sam? Sam was going to think him cursed or silly, being so upset about cake vs. pie when it went so much deeper than that.
When Sam did catch up to Dean, he placed a hand on his big brother’s shoulder, concern etched all over his face.
“Go away Sam. I‘m fine.”
“Yeah, Dean, you sound and look absolutely fine. Listen…I can go back and buy you pie, if it’s that important.” Sam truly was alarmed; it wasn’t in Dean’s nature to fly off the handle about something so insignificant. They hadn’t dealt with witches in a long time, but maybe?
At Sam’s words, Dean cracked. He just couldn’t do it anymore; the years of pent-up feelings had reached a breaking point. His knees hit the pavement as he rocked on his heels, his hands resting on the denim of Sam’s jeans at his calves. The cry that tore out of him brought Sam to his level instantaneously, with Sam crouching, cupping Dean’s face, checking him, and trying to gain eye contact. Dean was full on sobbing and all Sam could do was pull Dean into a hug as Dean heaved and hiccupped and fisted his hands into Sam’s plaid flannel shirt.
Sam had never dealt with Dean like this, not even after their father had died. Not after any of the crap they’d been through all their lives. He rocked Dean, not knowing what else his big brother needed, but willing to stay there and hold him, provide whatever comfort he could until Dean could vocalize what was so terribly wrong. This was so unlike his brother, Sam truly feared what was happening.
About an hour later, the tears had mostly subsided, Dean was refusing to make eye contact, and both shirts of the boys were soaked. Dean’s breathing had evened out some, and Sam’s legs had long since fallen asleep on the cold concrete, both boys leaning against each other for support.
“Dean?” Sam almost whispered it, afraid he’d set his big brother off again.
“You’re gonna make me talk about it, aren’t you Sammy?” Dean’s reponse was weary and expectant.
“Yeah, Dean. Whatever it is, I’ve gotta know. I’m your brother, Dean, you can tell me anything.” And Sam was lifting Dean’s head to meet his eyes, searching those verdant globes for a sign of anything to give him information. When he saw fear and sadness, his heart clenched, completely bewildered.
“Can we do this inside? I‘m cold and tired.” Dean tried to stand, but his legs had also gone numb and as he moved, he kept hold of Sam, both of them rising slowly. They walked the few steps back and into the room, Dean going to lay on the bed closest to the door. Sam sat opposite Dean and waited as Dean closed his eyes and took a deep breath. It took several minutes to start talking. And then it was like a release valve, he couldn’t stop until the pressure was lifted.
“It’s not about pie, Sammy. Not exactly. It’s about feelings.” Dean’s words were soft and weighted. Sam knew this was something Dean needed to say and obviously didn’t want to. It made his skin break out in goose bumps, anticipating the words he’d dreaded all his life.
“Feelings?” Sam tried to keep his tone neutral. He needed to stay calm for this.
“Yeah, remember when Zachariah told Adam we were ‘psychotically, irrationally, erotically codependent’ on each other?” Dean opened an eye to observe Sam. Sam’s bangs had fallen into his beautiful face and those hazel eyes he adored couldn’t be seen.
“Yeah, I remember,” murmured Sam. Shit.
“Well, I thought it was funny at the time, those words, their initials spell pie.” Dean held his breath, expecting Sam to look up, and he did.
“Pie? I’m not following, Dean.”
“Sammy, I don’t know how to say this. It was funny because pie…it means something more to me. I mean, obviously I like to eat it.” Dean huffed and sat up. Damn he was really going to say it. “But it started when we were kids. Those diners with dessert? It was always pie. Not cake. Pie.”
Sam nodded his head, still feeling confused.
“And when you got older, you stopped eating pie with me.”
Sam’s eyes widened when he thought about it. “You mean you’re distraught because I don’t share pie with you anymore? Dean we haven’t done that for at least ten years!”
Dean snorted, he couldn’t help it, the puppy confused look on Sam’s face was priceless and endearing.
“It was what the pie stood for Sam. What it meant at one point and what it became at another. And that’s not on you, it’s me. I let eating pie try to fill a space in me you never could. That you shouldn’t.” Dean cast his eyes down and the next part came so quietly Sam almost imagined he hadn’t heard it. “That I wanted.”
Sam nearly asked him to repeat it.
Dean’s head was down, but he raised his eyes enough to peek at Sam, who was digesting everything Dean had said. Dean waited, patient at this point. Sam would puzzle it out; he was amazingly smart at logic and was always a step ahead in –
Here it comes, damn that was quick.
“Dean, look at me.”
Dean raised his head, ready to hear the stinging words he was sure were coming. When he blinked and looked at Sam, he saw tears, and that beautiful dimpled smile.
“I get that we’re psychotic. And irrational. And codependent. That’s our lives, man. The douchebag wasn’t wrong about that.”
Dean held his breath.
“You should have told me, Dean.” There was no anger. Just a tenderness that touched Dean. That tenderness wasn’t supposed to exist. Not on Sam’s side.
Dean’s heart was jack rabbiting, it felt like a swarm of butterflies was gonna fly out of him at any moment. Sam’s smile was still there and he –
Sam moved over to the bed and sat next to Dean, letting his hands lightly grasp Dean’s.
“You should have told me, jerk.”
Dean opened his mouth to say something, and felt warm lips crash against his own. Too stunned to think, he felt his tongue reach out to dance alongside Sam’s, feeling himself enveloped by strong arms, Sam’s soft silky hair brushing along his jawline and ears as the kiss deepened.
When they broke apart to breathe, both brothers were flushed and giddy.
“I think tomorrow morning we’ll be able to say that angel wasn’t wrong about erotically, either.” Sam gave a cheeky grin and Dean couldn’t help but stay completely mesmerized by what had just happened.
“Of course, we need to eat first and our food is cold. Wanna head to the diner down the road with me?”
Dean nodded, still a bit in shock. He’d just kissed his brother. He’d told Sammy, and Sam, well Sam had kissed him. And then implied – woah.
He followed Sam to the Impala, gaining confidence with every step. Sam kept touching him – a hand on his leg or shoulder in the car, and once inside the diner, sitting on the same side of the booth, pressed together from the thighs down.
When the waitress came to take their order, Sam spoke up for both of them. “Pie. Extra large slice of cherry pie, warm, with ice cream. Two forks.”
And they took turns feeding each other bites of pie, lost in feelings both had pushed down for far too long.