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Phthonus Waking

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Dean’s first thought when he wakes up is, damn it.

There’s a body wrapped around his: chest snug against Dean’s back and one hand slung low and careless on his hip. It isn’t the first time this has happened to him: occasionally, when he’s drunker than usual or if the sex was really good, he’ll fall asleep before vacating the premises. It always results in awkward morning-after conversations, though, which he really fucking hates, and he can already tell from the way the girl is clinging to him like a goddamned octopus that this one is gonna be a doozey.

As he lies there thinking about how much this is going to suck, his brain wakes up enough to register the fact that his dick is sore and limp between his legs. Which means that he had a whole hell of a lot of sex last night because this is the first time Dean remembers waking up without saluting the sunrise since he was twelve. It’s funny that he doesn’t remember any of it—doesn’t even remember picking the chick up—because he doesn’t feel hung over or drunk and he would have needed more than a couple of shots of Jack to forget sex as good as this must have been.

He opens his eyes and blinks at the room, which is smeared and vague with the last vestiges of sleep, and then looks down at the hand draped over his hip.

The excessively large male hand.

Dean’s observation startles him into bolting out of the bed—or at least, into trying to bolt out of the bed because as soon as he starts to move bolts of agony shoot through his exhausted arms and legs. He chokes on his yell: biting his lip and turning his face into the pillow. Even in the midst of his body’s general protest, it’s impossible to ignore the pulsing, deep-seated ache in his ass, and even though he has never been in this situation before, he knows what that means. He knows because he remembers, suddenly and in great detail, exactly what happened last night.

Dean’s heart kicks into high gear and his breathing goes shallow. As much as it hurts to move, he makes another try for the edge of the bed and the hand on his hip—Sam’s hand—tightens. Dean doesn’t whimper the way he sort of wants to, but only because he isn’t getting enough air right now to manage it.

“Stop it,” Sam mumbles, tugging him closer. His nose nuzzles in against the side of Dean’s neck, setting off another series of aches there and making him wince.

Even more disturbing than the fact that he can now feel his brother’s cock rubbing up against his ass (even soft, the thing is a fucking monster) is the way that his body is responding: flushing with warmth as it eases back against Sam’s chest without his permission. Dean scrunches his eyes more firmly shut, like that’s going to change anything, and tightens his grip on the edge of the bed with his out flung hand. Maybe if he moves really slowly …

“It’s too early for this, man,” Sam drawls. His voice is lazy in a way that Dean hasn’t ever heard before but instinctively recognizes. There’s more than a little sleep there, making his brother’s lips and tongue clumsy, but it’s satisfaction that lengthens Sam’s vowels: the sort of satisfaction that only comes from having thoroughly fucked someone the night before. Normally, Dean would be ruffling Sam’s hair and calling him a sly dog, but that’s kind of hard to manage when he’s the one who got thoroughly fucked.

By Sam.

His baby brother.

Oh God.

Sam lets out a languid sigh and nuzzles at Dean’s neck again. This time, the sparking warmth that runs through Dean is strong enough to leave his groin humming with a vague, unfulfilled ache. His chest feels funny too: both tighter and more open than usual. Then Sam follows up with a kiss to the nape of his neck—sloppy, open-mouthed and lazy—and Dean’s body tries to relax even as his mind kicks into high gear. The conflicting signals leave him confused and off-balance, and his body gives a single, unconscious twitch.

Dean immediately regrets the tiny movement for a whole host of reasons, the least of which has to do with how screwed up his muscles are this morning. He can’t be this transparent right now, damn it. Sam saw more than enough of him last night: he can’t keep broadcasting everything he’s (feeling) thinking with trumpets and signal flares. When he reaches for his defenses, though, there’s nothing there but raw, hollow echoes.

Where the fuck did all his goddamned walls go?

“Know how to relax you,” Sam mutters, shifting against him, and then kisses him again: more pressure this time, hint of teeth. His hand—and how can Dean never have noticed how fucking huge his brother’s hands are before?—slides over Dean’s hip and onto his stomach before skirting up his chest in a gentle caress.

Dean has been fondled and stroked by any manner of women, but this is different, and not just because Sam’s hand is way larger and rougher than any woman’s hand is ever going to be. Those other touches were all about sex and getting off, but Sam is still soft behind him. Sam is soft and stroking him with deliberate, gentle care, and Dean isn’t sure what that means, but he thinks that it might have something to do with his missing defenses.

Sam, he wants to say, but doesn’t. He can’t afford to speak right now: not when Sam is touching him like this, not when he’s feeling so open and exposed. He really can’t afford to say his brother’s name because he knows how it’s going to come out: like a talisman, like desire and devastation twisted round and shot through with devotion.

It’s going to come out the way it always sounds inside his head.

Then Sam’s fingers graze Dean's nipple and everything sharpens: electric. Sam’s mouth moves on his neck—Sam’s teeth sinking into his skin with firm, careful pressure—and Dean’s breath stutters. His brother chuckles, sending vibrations up and down his spine, and moves his thumb in a second, deliberate sweep across Dean’s nipple. It hardens—Dean’s not a fucking eunuch, of course it hardens—and there’s an answering throb of warmth in his groin. When he glances down, he finds his dick in a half-hard state that’s both awkward and embarrassing because he can already tell he isn’t going to be able to manage anything more.

Jesus Christ, Sam broke his cock.

Dean opens his mouth to complain and then moans helplessly instead as Sam’s fingernails drag over his nipple. Sam’s tongue slides over his mouthful of skin, wetting it, and then he’s kissing his way along Dean’s shoulder. His hand skims back down Dean’s chest to his stomach, stroking lines of muscle and tracing the curve of his hipbone, and Dean is so goddamn fucked because while there’s a part of him that has kicked over into full blown panic, most of him is relaxing just like Sam said. Worse than that, there’s an unfolding warmth in his chest that has nothing to do with sex.

No, sex would be easy. Sex would be simple. The painful expansion in his chest, on the other hand, is a complicated tangle of emotion that has a little to do with gratitude and affection and a whole hell of a lot to do with trust and love.

And he can’t. God, he can’t afford to feel like this. Not now. Not fucking ever with Sam.

“Gotta piss,” Dean chokes out, and tries to flounder off the side of the bed. The pressure of his brother’s hand on his stomach increases, holding him close. Dean’s muscles are too spent to put up a fight and the conflicting spikes of fear and arousal that knowledge sends through him make his heart flutter alarmingly.

Then Sam sighs and his hand falls away.

“You can’t run away from this, you know.”

Dean isn’t running away, though: he’s making a strategic retreat. He just needs a little space so he can get his head back on straight and relocate his walls and defenses, and then they’ll be good to go. They can be Dean and Sam Winchester again, instead of … of whatever this is. They can be safe.

Although Dean braces himself for it, getting out of bed still fucking sucks, and he grunts underneath his breath. His abused muscles are protesting enough to make him reconsider the wisdom of moving, but it’s the ache in his ass that’s tempting him to abandon thoughts of the bathroom all together. Dean has soldiered through plenty of more painful injuries (busted collar bone, for one; demon-shredded insides, for another), but nothing has ever fucked him up quite so thoroughly or deeply.

This throbbing ache is too unsettling. It’s too intimate to bear: an insistent reminder of the fact that Sam’s cock was inside of him last night, that Sam held him down and opened him up and pushed himself inside. The experience was too intense for Dean to remember clearly, but even the blurred slivers of sensation ricocheting around inside of him (needed cherished safe loved) are enough to leave him sweating and on the verge of panic.

He remembers begging for Sam, begging for his brother, and Sam praised him and petted him and then filled him up. Sam pried Dean’s white knuckled hands off the controls, filling his ass and that hollowed out place in his chest, and fuck, it felt so fucking good, Sam’s mouth and hands on him and his cock inside of him and no real choice but to take it, to submit, and Jesus fucking Christ he can’t think about it right now.

Dean takes a wide-legged, stumbling step, and, oh God, it’s even worse when he moves. That burning, fucked feeling (it’s so goddamn wrong that he even knows what that feels like) redoubles. Now he’s got jangled bits of sound in his head to go along with the sensations. Sam’s voice: low and authoritative and hungry. His own: wrecked and broken and pleading.

I fucked my brother and I liked it, Dean thinks, and his stomach gives a lopsided roll.

“You need some help?” Sam asks from the bed.

Dean’s eyes go instantly to his brother—he’s like a damn homing pigeon when it comes to Sammy: can’t help it, never could—and Sam is sitting up in the bed and resting his weight on his elbows. His hair is a mess, flat on one side and wild on the other. The eyeliner has smudged around his eyes, raccoon-like.

But the sheets have fallen down to reveal taut stomach and broad chest, and he’s smiling this fond, amused little smile, and he’s still one of the most beautiful things Dean has ever seen.

Fuckity fuck.

Jerking his eyes away, Dean says, “I think you’ve done enough.”

The words come out angry and hostile, which isn’t terribly surprising. Dean’s frightened and off-balance, after all, and anger is never far behind either of those emotions. He can feel it now, building around the edges of his heartbeats, and clutches it close gratefully. It isn’t the armor he’s used to (the armor that says ‘fuck you, I don’t need you, I can take care of myself’) but it’s better than nothing.

Dean tries to keep his steps even as walks and can’t manage it. The undignified, duck-like waddle that takes him the last few feet to the bathroom leaves him filled with alternating waves of embarrassment and shame and anger. He almost hopes that Sam will laugh and give him a reason to lash out, but his brother is silent. Although he can feel Sam’s eyes on him, the attention doesn’t feel mocking, and in his head Dean hears his brother’s voice again: beautiful, so beautiful.

Flushed and breathless, he slams the bathroom door behind him. After a brief moment of consideration in which he stares sightlessly at the knob, he locks it as well. Then, scrubbing his face with one trembling hand, he turns back to the bathroom. And freezes.

Those goddamned black leather pants are draped over the edge of the tub. There’s a crumpled washcloth in the sink, and something white and crusted on the counter, and an empty tube of lubricant on the floor. And it smells … it smells like …

Dean tenses, half ready to rush back into the other room, and then clenches his jaw. Being in here with so many reminders of what happened last night is … well, upsetting, to say the least … but it’s better than going out there and facing Sam. Doing that would be as good as admitting how much he’s freaking out, and Dean's fessing up to that just about never.

Not that Sam, perceptive bitch that he is, doesn’t already know, but it’s the principle of the thing. Dean feels bent out of shape enough without providing his brother with tangible proof.

“Fuck,” he mutters instead. Swearing doesn’t actually make him feel any better, but he rubs at his mouth and then does it again just in case. “Fuck.”

A flicker of movement in the mirror catches his eye and he stares at himself, wide-eyed and startled out of his panic.

Fuck,” he says a third time, in a completely different tone of voice, and drifts closer to his reflection.

The mirror shows him a man who is just as raccoon-eyed as Sam: whose hair is mussed and disorderly. It shows him lips that are even fuller than normal, bruised and swollen from his brother's attentions, and a neck that has been mottled black and blue on one side.

Lifting a hand to the worst of it, Dean gingerly brushes the marks and then winces. There are more bruises around both wrists, the sight of which sends a little thrill of heat through him, as well as handprints on both hips and around the meat of his upper right thigh. The skin around the tattoo on his chest is also purpled because Sam couldn’t seem to get enough of that spot last night.

Come to think of it, Sam couldn’t seem to get enough of anything last night, which is why Dean’s body is such a spectacular wreck this morning.

He brushes his right thumb across his left wrist and bites his lower lip at the rush of heat that the ensuing ache sends through him. His wrists are ringed in shades of purple and blue because Sam held him down, he remembers. Sam forced his arms over his head and held them there while he fucked Dean that second time in the bed, and Dean got off on it. Dean got off on it like a fucking rocket.


Raising his eyes to the mirror again, he peers at himself and tries to figure out when he got so fucked in the head. The fact that he willingly (hell, more than willingly) slept with his brother last night is bad enough, but this? This weird, kinky shit? That’s just a whole new level of screwed up: shit Dean never wanted to know about himself, let alone show to his brother. There’s no denying it now, though—not believably, anyway—because Sam was balls deep inside of him in more ways than one last night.

He didn’t run, a little voice tries to remind him, but Dean shoves it away. After all, just because Sam didn’t run last night doesn’t mean he won’t do it today, or tomorrow, or the day after that.

Summer is hot, the sky is blue, and Sam leaves. It’s just the way things are. One of the best things about Dean’s deal, actually, is that fact that, for once, he’s pretty much guaranteed to beat his brother to the punch in that department. It’ll be a nice change of pace to be the one doing the leaving instead of the one left, even if the destination leaves a little something to be desired.

That payment is months away, though, which means that Sam still has plenty of time to fuck Dean up: to crawl inside of him and rearrange all of his interlocking shields, leaving him open and vulnerable. More than ever, Dean can’t afford that. He’s going to need all the defenses he can muster if he wants to hold out until his brother has died of old age and is safe somewhere Dean can’t get to him.

And Sam needs to be out of reach because otherwise he’s going to be Dean’s first stop when he finally pulls his smoky, black-eyed self out of the Pit.

Dean shivers, cold, and then thinks about falling asleep, safe and warm and loved, with Sam wrapped around him. The memory thaws him, but it also makes his chest ache, deep and raw. Fuck, he wants that: wants to believe that he can have that. He wasn’t born yesterday, though, so he knows that that kind of crap is nothing more than a little kid’s wistful daydream.

Dean is going to Hell: he doesn’t get to have a happy ending. And even if he didn’t have Property of Lucifer seared onto his soul, happy endings don’t generally feature being in an incestuous relationship with your kid brother. That shit isn’t anything but sick and twisted and worth about ten thousand bucks in therapy bills.

Scowling, he turns his back on the mirror and moves carefully over to the tub, where he turns on the shower and steps inside. The cascade of water over his chest and shoulders instinctively relaxes him, and the pounding heat soothes most of the lingering aches in his muscles. It can’t touch the throb in his ass, though, and Dean’s pretty sure that nothing’s going to be able to salve the deepest hurt in his chest, where the scabbed over scars from Sam’s departure for Stanford have reopened and are sluggishly bleeding.

As Dean rubs absently at his chest, he’s grateful for the distraction the pain provides. It’s familiar—a long since accepted fact of life—and he has grown to appreciate it for the clarity it brings and the protection it offers. Pain keeps hope away: keeps him from slipping up and letting that razor-feathered bird inside, where it will inevitably startle and take flight with a thrash of glittering, serrated wings.

Dean doesn’t want it inside his chest when that happens. He doesn’t want it anywhere near him.

Besides, Sam will be better off if Dean doesn’t let this happen again. Kid’s going to miss Dean enough as it is without further confusing what they are to each other. Dean is already brother, father, mother, partner, and friend. He doesn’t need to fuck Sam up even more by becoming lover as well.

Last night was intense, but they can still come back from it. They can chalk it up to the Trickster’s influence, and the fucking eyeliner, and the leather. Hell, maybe the Goths were pumping some crazy aphrodisiac through the club’s ventilation system. Maybe the thing they’re hunting, whatever it is, puts out some fucked up, gay, incestuous vibes.

There are plenty of rational explanations for what happened. Plenty of escape routes for Dean to worm his way free, if (when) Sam pushes him on it. He touches the bruise on one hip—Sam’s eyes, dark and devouring: Sam’s voice, confident and commanding: Sam’s hands, warm and worshiping—and a tremor runs through him.

Oh yeah, Sam’s definitely gonna push him on it.

Dean doesn’t actually feel any better by the end of his shower, but he thinks that he has at least figured out how to look as though he’s feeling better. He pulls faces in the mirror as he dries off: hard stares and shit eating grins. The expressions are fairly pathetic—brittle and plastic all the way through—but they’re going to have to do because he can’t stay in here forever. Sooner or later, Sam’s going to pick the lock and come in to confront him. Dean will be in a better position to dictate ultimatums if he brings the argument to his brother rather than the other way around.

Tying the towel around his waist (the only piece of clothing in here are the leather pants, and Dean’s never so much as touching the fucking things again), he makes his slow, painful way over to the door and opens it. Then, with what he hopes is a casual expression fixed on his face, he pokes his head out.

Sam isn’t in the bed where Dean left him.

Heart speeding, Dean starts to scan the room for his brother and then lets out a startled grunt as Sam steps in from the left (fucker ambushed him) and crowds him up against the doorframe. He barely has enough time to register the intent in his brother’s eyes before Sam is cupping his face and pressing their mouths together.

Sam kisses Dean gentle and slow and thorough, like he plans to do this all day—like this is the grand prize: just lips on lips with a tiny tease of tongue. His hands cradle Dean’s face as though Dean is made of porcelain and might break at the slightest sign of rough handling. In startling contrast, the peeling doorframe is rough on Dean’s bare back: bits of it flake away with every twitch of his shoulder blades. He keeps expecting his brother to stop, but Sam keeps kissing him in that worshipful, cherishing way, and it’s knocking Dean so far off balance he might as well be blindfolded and strapped into a tilt-a-whirl.

He doesn’t get kissed like this, damn it. He gets hard, fast kisses that are nothing more than a prelude to fucking. He gets kisses that are an exercise in arousal: that don’t mean anything to anyone—never have, never will.

But Sam is composing entire volumes with his mouth: songs and poems and sagas dwell in the tender press of his lips. Dean isn’t actually capable of deciphering any of it, of course. He never learned this language. Or maybe he does understand but refuses to admit it, even to himself: too frightened by the magnitude and number of the promises that he can taste on his brother’s lips to accept what is being offered.

Sam’s kisses are gentle, which is a bewildering problem, and so fucking sincere that they burn and sear and slice Dean up inside where no one can see. Except Sam does see because in between kissing Dean and stroking his face, he’s whispering “shh,” and “s’okay, baby,” and Dean wants to fucking cut something.

Instead, he finds himself starting to respond with hesitant little flicks of his own tongue. His mouth is clumsy and stupid on Sam’s, one hand still clutching the towel around his waist and the other fluttering just over his brother’s skin, and something twists inside his chest. Fuck, he hasn’t felt so awkward and out of his depth since he was thirteen years old and Sissy Franklin shoved her hand down his pants in the eraser room at school. This is worse, though, because this is Sam and it's him and Dean’s experienced, damn it, but he still feels like he’s making a fool out of himself.

Stomach churning with nerves, he starts to turn his head to the side and his brother makes a protesting noise. Sam tightens his grip long enough for Dean to get the message—no running allowed, no dodging this—and then goes back to stroking Dean’s cheekbones. His tongue traces Dean’s lips, coaxing.

Dean has no fucking clue what to do with himself if he can’t run or fight back, so he just stands there and lets his brother kiss him: shivering slightly because his hair is dripping cold water on his shoulders. His chest hurts, warm and shivery and way too fucking full, and Christ, is everything Sam does going to mess him up like this, because if it is then Dean’s going to go fucking nuts.

Finally, after a minute or an hour or a year, his brother gives his lower lip a final, gentle nip and releases him.

“Mmm, love your mouth,” Sam announces, bumping their noses together. “’S fucking gorgeous. Just wanna take you back to bed and kiss you. All. Day. Long.”

He punctuates his words with short, hot kisses that send shivers from Dean’s lips down to his heart, which aches like it’s been shredded, and Jesus Christ, he can’t do shit like that.

“Sam,” Dean starts, but his brother shuts him up with another kiss.

Sam's mouth tastes stale with sleep, but it's warm and Dean can smell him, strong and musky and masculine. That kind of thing has never turned him on before, but it is right now. His mouth drops open wider, face tilting up, and then (thank God) Sam draws back. His brother doesn't step away, though: stays crowding Dean up against the door frame.

"No," Sam says. His eyes are intent as he drags his knuckles across Dean's cheekbone. “I know it’s against your nature, Dean, but you have to try to stop freaking out about this. It’s been coming for a long time—”

What? No it hasn’t.

“—and we’re gonna be fine.” He strokes Dean’s face once more and then runs his hand down his chest, making Dean give a stronger, involuntary shudder. “How’s your ass doing?”

“It’s fine,” Dean mutters, but he shifts a little at the reminder and ‘fine’ isn’t exactly the best word to describe the deep-seated ache that movement sets off.

“Liar,” Sam says, sounding amused. “There’s some stuff in my bag that should help. You can either do it yourself or you can wait for me to get out of the shower and I’ll do it for you.”

The way that Dean flushes at the thought of his brother’s fingers sliding into him again is mortifying enough that he finally pushes him away. Sam resists long enough to make it clear that he’s letting himself be moved (which isn’t at all a turn on, not in the fucking slightest) and then steps back. As Dean flees toward towards the bed, his hands are trembling and weak, and he has to make a conscious effort to hold his towel closed.

“Like I’m letting you anywhere near my ass again.”

Dean braces himself for a retort, but Sam stays silent as he starts rifling through his bag for a pair of pants. He hasn’t heard the door shut, though, which means that his brother hasn’t gone into the bathroom, and the back of his neck is prickling with the sensation of being watched. It needles him, having Sam’s eyes on his skin like that, and the fact that just looking at his pants makes him wince isn’t helping.

Through an act of supreme self-control, he manages to keep his mouth shut for two full minutes and then can’t take it anymore.

“What?” he snarls, clenching the leg of a pair of jeans in one hand. He doesn’t turn around. Looking at Sam isn’t exactly safe right now.

“When I get out of the bathroom,” Sam says. “We’ll talk.”

“Nothing to talk about,” Dean mutters as he shoves the jeans back into his bag. “We fucked. Once. It’s not gonna happen again.”

He expects his brother to argue with him, or maybe to make some sort of snide joke about it being ‘twice, actually’, but Sam only repeats, “We’ll talk.” A moment later, Dean hears the shower start up.

When he chances a glance back, he sees that Sam has eased the bathroom door closed and is safely on the other side. Dean doesn’t know what it means that his brother didn’t immediately push him on this, but it can’t mean anything good. Sam never lets anything go, especially not when he has the bit between his teeth the way he does now. He’s probably in there planning his course of attack, which means that Dean has about twenty minutes to figure out how to defend against the conversational equivalent to the Storming of Normandy.

Goddamn it, he needs a fucking drink. Or, at the very least, coffee. The world always looks so much more manageable once he’s gotten some caffeine into his system. Of course, coffee means leaving the room, which requires pants, which … no. The faint pressure of the towel is bad enough: no way is Dean squeezing into a pair of jeans, no matter how worn and comfortable they are.

He scrubs his hand over his face, grimacing, and then his eyes catch on his brother’s bag. The salve or ointment or whatever it is that Sam thinks would help Dean’s ass is in there, but more importantly so are that ratty pair of sweats Sam wears when they spar. Perfect.

The sweats are baggy on Sam, and Dean is narrow around the waist, so they’re dangerously loose when he tugs them on, but they aren’t any more painful than the towel was, and they’re perfectly decent as long as he holds them up with one hand. Tossing a faded t-shirt over his head and shoving his sockless feet into his boots, he duck waddles over to the front door and cautiously pulls it open. After a quick check to make sure no one’s in the immediate vicinity (the fewer people who see him like this, the better), he steps outside and eases the door shut again: quietly, so that Sam won’t hear.

It isn’t that he’s afraid, of course. Sam isn’t the boss of him, and he can’t stop Dean from going out to get a cup of coffee if he wants to. It’s just that, well, Dean’s body is fucked up enough right now that Sam might actually be able to stop him from going out to get a cup of coffee. And as over protective as Sam has been lately, he’d definitely try if he knew what Dean was up to.

What Sam doesn’t know won’t hurt him, but that still doesn’t stop Dean from feeling a little guilty as he gingerly makes his way toward the motel’s front office. He needs to get his coffee and get back to the room before Sam emerges from the shower, or his little brother is going to flip. Neither of them needs that kind of stress right now.

Just out of view of the office windows, Dean pauses and takes a deep breath. When he moves forward again, he’s still limping, but not quite as badly. Walking like this hurts like a mother, but his gait isn’t screaming ‘just got fucked so hard I can barely move’ anymore, and that’s more than worth the agonizing burn in his ass.

There’s a girl behind the counter, which is embarrassing, but not as embarrassing as a guy would have been. She looks about twenty-one, twenty-two at the most, and is pretty in a mousy sort of way. Dean gives her his best ‘hey there, darling’ grin as he moves into the office. Normally, that grin makes women blush and giggle, but this morning all he gets is a widening of the girl’s eyes as they dart to the side of his neck and then down the rest of his body. He realizes that he’s holding himself as though he just got worked over with a baseball bat and does his best to straighten.

“Oh my God, sir, are you okay?” the girl blurts, pushing to her feet.

Dean’s smile wilts a little around the edges, but he clings to what’s left as he answers, “I’m fine. I just, uh, had a rough night.”

The girl’s eyes widen further at the sound of his voice, and for the first time Dean actually hears himself. He used to think that Sam sounded like crap after he got choked, but that was before he had this rough, fucked out rasp for comparison.

Since Dean woke up this morning, there has been plenty to occupy his mind without acknowledging the soreness in his throat and jaw: broken cock, mangled muscles, Sam in bed with him, his fucking ass on fire. He’s noticing it now, though, and it makes him think about Sam’s hands holding his face while that huge cock pistoned in and out of his throat and he tried to get his gag reflex under control. The wave of heat that washes over Dean at the memory is unmistakable as anything but arousal, which is fucked up enough that he has to bite the inside of his cheek to keep from laughing.

“Should I—” the girl tries hesitantly, and then, lowering her voice, offers, “I can call the police.”

Dean has to blink at her for almost a minute before he understands what she’s saying. “No,” he blurts once he’s finally figured it out. “I’m not—it isn’t—it was consensual.”

It was. God help him and Sam both, but it was. Christ.

The girl doesn’t look convinced, though, and Dean can’t blame her. If Sam had shown up looking the way that Dean does, Dean would have dragged his brother off to the nearest hospital and then gone gunning for the son of a bitch who hurt him. No matter what Sam said.

“Really,” Dean tries, “it looks worse than it is.” Taking a careful step closer, he rests a hand on the counter. Now he can smell what he came in here for—can see it over the girl’s shoulder in a shining, glorious cylinder—and his smile eases into something more natural. “So, I was hoping I could get a cup of coffee.”

The girl doesn’t move, and for a moment Dean thinks that she has zoned out on him. Then he realizes that she’s staring at his wrist—at the bracelet of bruises in the shape of Sam’s fingers. He takes his hand back, hiding it on the other side of the counter, and repeats, “Coffee?”

When the girl looks up at him, there’s enough pity in her expression to make Dean cringe. He steels himself for another offer to call the police, but instead she turns around and takes one of the stacked Styrofoam cups down from the shelf.

“Cream and sugar?”

“No cream, four packs of sugar,” Dean answers. He considers getting a cup for Sam as well and decides against it. He’s too annoyed with his brother right now to be that charitable. Sam can make his own damn coffee run.

The girl stirs in Dean’s sugars for him instead of just dumping it in to congeal at the bottom the way employees in these places usually do, and he smiles a little to himself. Maybe this sympathy thing has some fringe benefits after all. He’s opening his mouth to thank her when the office door bangs open.


It’s Sam, of course. Sam fresh from the shower and dripping water all over the place and with nothing more than a towel wrapped around his waist. A towel that looks more like a washcloth on Sam’s freakishly ginormous body. Dean isn’t sure whether he wants to sink through the floor and disappear, punch his paranoid brother in the face, or lick the excess water from all that skin, and where the fuck is that last option coming from because it sure as hell wasn’t there yesterday.

“Sam, what the—” Dean glances down at his brother’s bare feet and switches thought midstream. “—fuck are you doing walking around outside without shoes on? There’s broken glass all over the place.”

“You weren’t there,” Sam says. He’s in Dean’s space in a second, dripping on him but not touching. Not yet, anyway. “I got out of the shower and you weren’t—I thought you left, I thought—”

“Dude, chill out. I just came out to get a cup of coffee.”

Dean tries to keep his voice reasonable and calm, but Sam’s nostrils are flaring and his cheek is jumping and there’s more white to his eyes than brown. He hasn’t been this bad in weeks—not since those first few days after Broward County—and it’s Dean’s fault for sneaking out when he knows how Sam gets. If the Trickster were in front of him right now, Dean would shove another wooden stake through its chest in a heartbeat: might not kill the fucker, but it’d be satisfying as hell. The Trickster isn’t here, though, so he settles for pushing his own issues aside and resting one hand on his brother’s chest. Sam’s heart beats alarmingly fast beneath his palm, which makes Dean’s pulse speed in return.

“Hey, man,” he murmurs. “Take it easy. I’m right here, I’m okay.”

He watches the fear drain from his brother’s eyes bit by bit, until Sam is calm again, and nodding, and taking Dean’s hand off his chest and lacing their fingers together. It’s girly enough to make Dean self-conscious and awkward, but he doesn’t even consider pulling away. The memory of his brother’s frantic eyes is still too close for comfort.

Then Sam says, “Come on,” and starts tugging him toward the door, and Dean’s cheeks heat with mingled embarrassment and anger. He isn’t some kind of wayward kid, damn it, and scared or not Sam knows better than to treat him like he is.

“Wait just a—Stop, dude. Sam! I want my goddamned coffee!”

Sam finally stops pulling—another few seconds and Dean’s arm was going to come off—and glances back as if registering the girl’s presence for the first time. His expression doesn’t change, but his hold on Dean tightens and something dark flickers in his eyes. When Dean turns his own head and catches the frosty, hostile look that the girl is giving his brother, it isn’t difficult to figure out what’s going on in her head.

Grimacing, he wishes that he were close enough to a wall to bang his head against it. Things were never this complicated when Sam kept his dick and his hands to himself.

“Thanks,” Dean says aloud, drawing the girl’s eyes back to him as he reaches out for his coffee.

Her expression softens and she leans over the counter toward him. “Anytime,” she says with a meaningful look. “Just remember that I’m right here. For anything you need.”

Just like that, Sam is pressed up against Dean’s back and making a low noise in the back of his throat. It sounds more like a growl than anything else, and the expression on Sam’s face must match because the girl takes a frightened, instinctive step backwards.

It’s the River Lethe and that Goth kid all over again, with the unpleasant addition of the threat of police involvement, and Dean whirls on his brother immediately. Ignoring the numerous protests his body makes at the violent movement, he starts hustling Sam out the door. He intends to herd him all the way back to the room, actually, but he can tell after only a few steps that his wrecked body isn’t going to make it that far.

Dean manages to make it out of sight of the office and then he stops and jerks his hand free, leaning his shoulder against the building in what he hopes is a surreptitious manner. Sam’s not going to take him seriously if he can tell Dean is about to fall over.

“What the fuck was that?” Dean demands, filling his voice with all of the exasperated anger he can muster.

“What was what?” Sam replies, but he sounds sullen, and Dean can tell that his brother knows exactly what he’s talking about.

“Dude, you were, like, two seconds away from jumping that girl. And not in the fun, ‘I want to fuck your brains out’ kind of way.”

Sam squares his jaw, the stubborn bitch, and doesn’t say anything.

“Sam!” Dean barks.

His brother’s expression is mulish as ever, but this time he opens his mouth and grumbles, “I didn’t like the way she was looking at you,” which is so ridiculous that Dean would have thrown his hands up and walked away from the entire conversation if he’d been able to.

“Seriously?” he says instead, incredulous. “That’s what you’ve got? You didn’t like the way she was looking at me?”

“She propositioned you, Dean!” Sam yells. “Right in front of me, she—”

“She thought you were abusing me, asshole,” Dean bites out. “Which, by the way, thanks a lot for acting like a completely possessive fuckwad. We’ll be lucky if she doesn’t call the cops anyway.”

“She thought what?” Sam says. All of his petulant anger has vanished, leaving him confused and blinking. “Why?”

“Gee, I don’t know, Sam,” Dean drawls sarcastically. “Maybe it was all the bruises and the fact that I’m walking like someone shoved a goddamned baseball bat up my ass.”

He’s angrier than he probably should be, angry enough that he doesn’t think he’s actually angry at all, but whatever the emotion churning in his chest is, he can’t bear to look at his brother any longer. Turning sharply, he forces his aching body back into motion. Sam, who didn’t get fucked raw last night, has no problem keeping up with him.

“Dean, I didn’t—you liked it, right?”

Dean clenches his jaw hard enough that he hears it pop. He really, really wishes that Sam hadn’t asked that. It’s one of those questions that have no good answer. Either Dean tells the truth and encourages his brother to pursue this fucked-up thing between them, or he lies and makes Sam feel like a shit for abusing him.

“Dean?” Sam prods, and Dean moves faster. Maybe if he ignores his brother long enough, he’ll go away.

Except then Sam steps in front of him and hems Dean in against the side of the building, chests centimeters apart and hands planted on either side of Dean’s body. A car drives past on the street with a honk and a catcall for Sam’s naked back and then all is silent again. Dean keeps his coffee held out to the side where it won’t get squished between them and his face blank and his eyes safely on the pavement to Sam’s right.

“Move,” he says.

“Not until you answer me.”

Dean can see his brother’s shoulder out of the corner of his eye: wet skin gleaming in the morning sunlight. For some reason, his throat has gone dry.

“You’ve got ten seconds to move before I move you,” he rasps. And then, immediately: “One.”

“You couldn’t move a three year old kid right now, Dean,” Sam replies, but his words are soft with fond amusement. That tone of voice really shouldn’t be making Dean’s heart skip like it is.


“Why won’t you answer the question?” His brother’s voice has gone wheedling and plaintive, which means that he has also broken out the puppy eyes. Those don’t actually work on Dean, but he’s gonna keep staring at the shard of glass lying on the black asphalt anyway. Just in case.


“I’m not moving, Dean,” Sam says. He sounds like he means it, too, but he isn’t the only stubborn son of a bitch in this family.

“Four,” Dean perseveres, and then sucks in a sharp breath as his brother leans close enough to slide their cheeks together. The solid bulk of Sam’s chest brushes his for a second, dampening his t-shirt, and then he shifts back just far enough to leave Dean’s skin humming with the promise of contact.

“You know what I think?” Sam murmurs. His breath, hot and moist, curls against Dean’s ear.

Dean isn’t sure how he manages it, but he unglues his tongue from the roof of his mouth and says, “Five.”

“I think you fucking loved it, but you don’t want to admit it because it’s freaking you out.”


“What bothers you more, Dean?” Sam drawls. “The fact that it’s gay, or the fact that you’re my big brother?”

Dean didn’t actually need either of those reminders, thanks, and he really didn’t need to hear Sam say ‘big brother’ like that, like he was licking the words. He thinks he might be sweating, but he can’t be sure: not with Sam so close and wet and dribbling water on his cheek and chest and shoulder.

“Seven,” he whispers.

“Or,” Sam breathes, low and filthy, “Is it just the fact that you like being dominated that you’re having trouble swallowing?”

Dean flashes on his brother’s hands holding him down, Sam’s hands backed by intent and hunger and all the strength in that looming, sculpted body, Sam’s hands restraining him—controlling him—and the “Eight,” comes out on a hoarse moan. He isn’t sure anymore whether this countdown was supposed to end with his knee in Sam’s crotch or his tongue down his brother’s throat.

“Big, tough, Dean Winchester. The hero, the man with the plan: large and in charge. Except when you let baby brother fuck you raw, that is.”

Sam eases his leg forward the inch or so he needs to press it against Dean’s cock, which is half-hard and aching in his sweats, and Dean shuts his eyes against a sudden surge of vertigo. His lips, clumsy, stumble as he counts, “N-nine.”

“Admit it, Dean,” Sam insists, “you got off on it.” Suddenly, he sounds angry: speaking with the same terse, restrained heat that possessed him during his worst fights with Dad. “I had you high as a fucking kite last night—and yeah, part of that’s because you’re a kinky son of a bitch, deal with it—but part of it’s because it was me. My mouth my hands my cock. You’ve been in love with me for years, Dean, you just don’t want to admit it to yourself.”

He falls silent finally, now that the damage has been done, and Dean can’t find his voice to respond. What Sam just said isn’t true, is it? It can’t be true. Dean would have noticed something like that: he’s not a moron. Last night was a … a freak aberration, like a decent Olson twins movie.

But Sam is barely touching Dean and he’s been reduced to trembling against the side of the building: insides a disorderly mess and groin filled with a hot, pulsing ache that’s keeping time with the throb in his ass. Sam tilts his head, scraping his lips over Dean’s neck and nestling his nose against the patch of skin behind Dean’s ear. Dean’s own nose and mouth are in his brother’s damp hair, and Sam smells so good, familiar and comforting, he smells like home, and God help him but Dean wants.

A series of scenarios flash through his mind, and the one he fixates on—ripping the ludicrous excuse for a towel from Sam’s hips and giving that blowjob thing another shot right here and now—is bound to get them both arrested. He tries to snap out of it by reminding himself of how much it’d suck to see Henricksen’s gloating face, and how fucking wrong this is, and how safe it isn’t, and, oh yeah, how much it’s gonna tear Sam up inside when the hellhounds finally rip Dean apart, and finds his hands creeping up toward his brother’s towel anyway.

Oh fu—, he thinks, and then Sam breathes, scenting him like some wild animal, and Dean’s thoughts crumble to cinders. He feels cotton beneath the fingers of his left hand: coffee spilling over the back of his right. He’d be ripping the towel free except for how he can’t move at fucking all: every muscle in his body seized up like a startled deer’s.

Sam’s mouth opens, lips moving in a teasing brush against the side of Dean’s throat, and his brother whispers, “The word you’re looking for is ‘ten’.”

It takes a few seconds for that to penetrate. A few more for Dean to figure out what the hell that’s even supposed to mean. Then he gets it: remembers where they are and what they’re doing and Jesus Christ how fucking easily Sam got under his skin, like it was simple, like it was nothing.

“Fuck you, Sam,” he bites out, furious, and then shoves his way free. It hurts, and he drops what’s left of his coffee in the process, but it’s more than worth it to get out from between his brother and the side of the building.

Dean storms back to their room, where the door is gaping open (of course it is: not like Sam has anywhere to hide a key what with all the clothes he isn’t wearing) and rushes inside. For a few seconds, he considers slamming the door behind him and locking his brother out, but he isn’t quite pissed enough to leave Sam outside to get arrested for something as asinine as indecent exposure, and he continues straight on into the bathroom instead.

That door he does slam and lock. If his brother tries picking his way in, Dean is going to throw the complementary bar of soap at his head (followed by the shampoo bottles and the toothpaste, if the first message doesn’t register). Sam doesn’t try to pick the lock, though: doesn’t even call to Dean through the door.

Dean stands by the sink (no fucking way he’s sitting down while his ass is screaming like this) and listens as his brother moves around in the room. He’s familiar enough with the sounds to know that Sam is getting dressed (rustle of clothes, pull of zippers, thunk of shoes) and then there’s a jingle of keys—Dean’s keys: if Sam fucks up the Impala, Dean’s going to kill him—and the front door opens and shuts again and it’s silent.

After a few minutes of listening to nothing, he chances a peek out into the main room. He wouldn’t put it past his brother to be lying in wait for him again, but Sam is nowhere in sight. Dean’s chest constricts the way it always does when his brother is gone (kid has a habit of wandering off: of getting lost, and kidnapped, and hurt), but he’s used to the feeling and easily ignores it in favor of his relief at not having to deal with Sam’s mind games right now.

Fuck Sam anyway. Fuck him for his smug superiority and his pushy nature and his goddamned grabby hands. Fuck him for his fucking assumptions.

Dean isn’t gay, for one. Not even a little bit. Before last night he never even thought about doing another dude.

And he sure as fuck isn’t in love with Sam, of all people. Loves him, sure: they’re family, and that’s what family does. But they’re family, and that means that this whole ‘been coming for a while’ and ‘in love with Sam’ crap is just that. Crap.

Last night was a mistake. Dean wasn’t himself, and neither was Sam, and once Sam has had some time to think it over, he’ll come to the same realization. Hell, last night would have been a mistake even if they weren’t brothers because Dean just isn’t the type of guy that a guy like Sam would be interested in.

Sam obviously isn’t seeing things clearly right now. He isn’t seeing Dean clearly. Ever since the Trickster’s Tuesday Bonanza, Sam has had him up on some kind of freaking pedestal, like he’s special, like he deserves the kind of kisses Sam was offering this morning. But Sam is smart, and sooner or later he’ll realize what he’s doing, and then he’ll take another look at Dean and the pedestal will come crashing down.

He’ll look at Dean and see his brother: Daddy’s good little soldier, the guy who couldn’t manage to graduate high school, let alone college, who let his little brother get knifed in the back in the mud. He’ll see the fuck-up, the one night Casanova with a girl in every port but no home to speak of, whose longest running relationship was that two-week stint with Cassie. Sam will look at him and see the guy that he left, easy as breathing, like it didn’t mean anything at all.

There’s a note on the table in his brother’s neat, sturdy handwriting.


Went out to get breakfast. Back soon. We’ll talk when I get back.


“Well, that’s not happening,” Dean mutters, and then reads the postscript halfway down the page.


P.S. Stop being stubborn and use the salve. It’ll help.


He gives the tube lying next to the note a mistrustful look—the thought of putting anything anywhere near his ass right now is making his stomach turn—and then picks it up anyway. Lessening the burn will increase his mobility, which is important, but it will also stop reminding him of last night’s train wreck every time he moves, which is vital to his health and sanity.

Besides, if Sam comes back and Dean is still moving around like an 80-year-old cowboy, Sam isn’t even going to hesitate before pushing him down onto the bed and lubing him up himself.

Just … no. Not a good idea.

Gritting his teeth, Dean gets down to work.