Sam stared at the ceiling of yet another crappy motel, wishing away the hours until the sun came up and he can start another day. The sound of Dean’s soft snores drift over from the bed next to him and he silently sighs. There is so much he wants to share with Dean but he doesn’t even know where to start, there is so much that his older brother doesn’t know about him. Yet another barrier between them that will never be ok, no matter how much they try. Sam is a disappointment, and he knows it. Worse still, he thinks Dean knows it too.
It all started a few months ago, when he was lying on a motel bed similar to this one. Dean had fallen to sleep straight away, but Sam lay awake. He felt so wrong, there was something inside of him that he couldn’t get rid of. The demon blood was pumping through his veins and he wanted it out. Checking that his brother was still asleep he slid the knife out from under his pillow and crept to the bathroom. Sam shut the door before turning on the light, the fluorescent light casted weird shadows on Sam’s face as he stared in the mirror deliberating about what he was about to do. He took the knife and turned over his wrist. Pressing the knife down onto his skin sent a shiver up his spine and he dragged it along, forming a neat red line. The blood trickled down his arm, and Sam hated his blood. He wanted it out of him, away from his body, so he made another line and then another.
The next day Sam went out and replaced all his shirts with long-sleeved ones.
He hated that the pain made him feel more alive than he had ever felt and the next day when Dean fell asleep, he crept out of bed and cut his other wrist.
Now as Sam lay staring at the ceiling he felt the familiar urge to feel something again. To get the blood that killed two people he loved out of his body. He rolled over and watched Dean for a minute, checking that his breathing was even, before he grabbed the knife from it’s usual hiding place and went to the bathroom. He shut the door and rolled up the sleeve on his right arm. He alternated arms every time he did this, Dean would notice if Sam couldn’t use one of his arms as well as the other. Sam’s arm was littered with lines, all neat and blurring into each other so you couldn’t tell where one ended and the other began. Some were a faded white colour as they had healed, and others were bright red and scabbed over from a couple of nights before. A small tear escaped his eye as he realised how bad he had gotten, yet he couldn’t stop himself from dragging the blade across his skin again and again, until he was completely numb. After the cuts had been made, Sam had to be careful. Clean up all the blood, not leave anything lying about that might make Dean suspicious. Once, after a particularly bloody night, Sam had cleaned the whole bathroom, only to wake up to a suspicious Dean who had asked Sam whether he had cleaned the bathroom. Sam panicked and said yes, because he knew he couldn’t lie to his brother, he just withheld part of the truth and said that the bathroom was disgusting and he was bored. Dean just laughed and said nothing more about it, after that Sam was more careful.
Tearing some tissue from the roll of toilet paper, he pressed it to his arm to stop the bleeding. Once he was finished, he took a deep breath and unlocked to door.
Dean was standing outside the door.
“What took you so long in there Sammy?” Dean questioned, sounding gruff from sleep.
“Um-well I-uh couldn’t sleep so I sat in the bathroom for a bit” It was a flimsy lie and Sam knew it. Unfortunately so did Dean.
“That’s a lie Sam, you better start talking right now or so god help me”
“It was nothing Dean, I just couldn’t sleep” He was pushing his luck now, and they both knew it.
“Bullshit” his brother pressed him against the wall next to the bathroom door, seeing his brother’s panic; Dean’s eyes softened a bit, “you can tell me anything Sammy”
Sam cracked, there was nothing he could do in this moment, he was a rabbit trapped in the headlights and it was 4:20 in the morning. The sun hadn’t even risen yet; he still hadn’t gotten his new day. A small tear escaped Sam’s eye, if Dean found out everything would be different between them and he didn’t want any more reasons for his brother to treat him differently. In that moment he hadn’t noticed that one of the cuts on his arm had started to bleed again. Dean had.
In one swift movement, he grabbed Sam’s arm and rolled up his sleeve. A sob formed in Sam’s throat but it couldn’t get out. He was too trapped, too scared about his brother’s reaction to the criss-cross scars.
Dean stood there, frozen to the spot for 10 minutes before he could even bear to lift his head. How could Sam do this to himself? To Dean? Why hadn’t he said anything to him, how could have been so blind? His little brother had been slowly killing himself and Dean hadn’t even seen it. He’s ashamed of himself a little voice inside of his head told him. Dean wanted it to shut up, he had let Sam down, he should have been there for him.
“Why Sammy?” was all Dean could choke out
“It’s not your fault De-“
“Just tell me why!” Dean tried again; Sam sank down to the floor, dragging Dean down with him as he was still attached to Sam’s arm.
“I didn’t mean to hurt you”
“I know you didn’t Sammy, but you hurt yourself and by doing that you hurt me, what were you thinking?” Dean looked into his little brother’s eyes, eyes that were surrounded by long strands of brown hair. In that moment his brother looked 5 again, so scared of the monster in the closet. He was so sorry that he didn’t know what to do for Sam this time.
“I just, I just wanted it out of me” Dean looked at Sam like he didn’t understand so the younger brother continued.
“The demon blood Dean, it’s killing me, but worse it’s killing other people, mom” Sam chokes out a sob, “Jess”
Dean grabs his brother’s hand and they sit there like that for hours, Dean rubbing small circles on his brother’s palm while Sam cries softly until the sun comes up.
When it does, Sam raises his tear-streaked face and smiles slightly. “A new day” Sam whispers to no one in particular, but Dean hears him all the same, although he isn’t watching the sun come up through a crappy motel window, he’s watching his little brother, carefully picking and choosing his next words.
“Sam we need to talk about this” Sam looks at his brother, the small smile gone, he eyes turn back down towards the carpet in shame.
“I still don’t understand why Sammy, I know you’ve got demon blood in you, but why this? Why?!” Dean almost shouted at his brother, barely concealing the anger that was aimed at no one in particular.
“I know you want to talk about this not Dean but I just can’t” and with that Sam stood up, walked over to his bed and lay in it, his back turned away from Dean, still watching the sun from his bed.
Three days later, Dean returns to the motel after getting some food from the gas station. He was only gone 5 minutes; he hated to leave his brother alone in case anything happened again. Sam barely gets out of bed though, and when he returns he finds his brother fast asleep, despite it being 1:30pm.
When Dean dumps the bag of food on the small wooden table, he notices a sheet of neatly folded white paper. Scrawled on the front is one word, why.
Dean unfolds the paper and sits down; it’s Sammy’s confession.
I couldn’t say this out loud because I’m ashamed. I am not a good person or a normal person despite how hard I try, and finding out about the demon blood told me that I never could be the two things I wanted. It hurt so bad to know that I was the reason that mom and Jess are gone and there’s nothing I can ever do about that, so I just wanted it out. It caused all the problems we’ve ever had in our lives, so one night I took the blade that I normally keep under my pillow and went to the bathroom. I knew it was wrong Dean, I’m not blind, it wasn’t the right thing to do, but it felt so right. I have never felt more alive than in those moments when the blade touched my skin, it made me realise how numb I am. How hard I find it to care these days, and it made me want more, so almost every night I went to the bathroom to let out my demons. Dean, you couldn’t have known so don’t blame yourself. I am not okay, and I never will be, not as long as I’m alive and there are demons in the world. I hope you understand, but I will understand if you don’t. I also understand if you want to leave, you may go, don’t let any stupid ‘watch out for Sammy’ crap stop you. You don’t have to constantly watch out for me.
Be ok Dean. The sun will rise again and there will be a new day.
Dean was crying now. His own brother was hurting so bad and Dean didn’t know what to do, he was so lost.
“Oh Sam what can I do” he whispered to no one, standing up, he crept over to his brother’s bed and slipped in.
“I’m here Sammy, I’m not going anywhere”
And with that the eldest Winchester fell into a restless sleep.