I can't remember when it was good
moments of happiness elude
maybe I just misunderstood
"Now remember, Dean, Mommy is really tired so we can't stay long."
Dean was skip-hopping along the shiny floor of the hospital, holding onto his dad's hand. He was going to meet his baby brother for the first time. His baby brother. That's what his dad said. Dean had seen babies before, in a stroller at the park that his mom took him to and in a restaurant highchair, throwing food all over the place. Dean never cared either way for those babies. They were usually loud and messy. But none of those babies were his. Sammy belonged to him.
"But I get to see Sammy, right Daddy?"
"Of course you do. But you have to be good, Dean. No loud noises. Babies get scared at loud noises."
Dean looked up at his dad and frowned; his lower lip poking out in a pout. He wasn't dumb. He wasn't going to do anything to scare his baby brother. They came up to a closed door when his dad stopped.
"Ok, Deano, we're here. Now remember what I said."
"I remember, Daddy. No loud noises. No whining. No jumping around."
"Ok, then. Here we go."
Dean reached up for the doorknob at the same time his dad did. He could hardly contain his excitement. He had a tickly fluttering feeling in his tummy. His baby brother. His Sammy.
The door opened and the first thing he saw was his mom, sitting up in a really cool hospital bed with all kinds of buttons on the side. All of a sudden he really wanted to go push all those buttons and see what they did. Dad's hand on his shoulder stopped that train of thought instantly though. Instead, he ran over to his mom, trying to jump up on her bed but before he made it, his dad's arms swooped around his middle and lifted him up to rest against his dad's hip. And that's when he saw him. Sammy. He wasn't exactly what Dean was expecting. He was wrapped up so tight in a light blue blanket that he was shaped like a large peanut with his pink wrinkled face peeking out through the top. His squinty little eyes were closed and his mouth was moving like he was sucking on something even though there wasn't anything there. Dean was a little afraid because his baby brother was kind of funny looking.
Mom looked at Dean with a big, bright smile on her face. Dean just knew his mom was the prettiest mom in the world. "Hey, angel! What do you think about your baby brother?"
Dean frowned a little while he thought about that question.
"Does he have any hair?"
His parents giggled at that but it was a serious question. His head was all covered up and Dean couldn't tell.
"Well, of course he does, Dean. Not very much though. It's more like fuzz than anything else. But before you know it, he'll have a lot of hair just like you do," Mom answered as she reached over to muss up Dean's hair.
"Is he gonna wake up soon?"
"Babies are pretty tired for a while after they're born, but don't you worry. He'll be awake all the time, real soon."
"But I need to talk to him."
"Dean, he can't talk and he can't understand what you say. Not yet, anyway. That'll be one of your jobs as a big brother. To teach him all kinds of things, like how to talk."
"But I still need to talk to him. He doesn't hafta talk. He can just listen."
Dad set Dean down on the bed next to his mom.
"You wanna hold him, Dean? Only for a second? You have to be really careful but I'll help you."
Dean didn't even answer his dad. Just held out his arms and waited. Dad carefully lifted the bundle from his mom's arms and placed it into Dean's, keeping his own big hands under the baby
, as well.
"I can do it, Daddy. I'm a big boy."
"I know you are, Dean. I'm just gonna help you hold his head up, okay?"
"Okay," Dean replied, not really minding because he finally had his baby brother in his arms and it was such a great feeling. Dean knew what love was. He loved Mommy and Daddy. He loved Power Rangers. He loved pie. He loved cool cars and his racetrack at home in his bedroom. He loved it when Daddy would read him stories before bed. And now he knew that he loved Sammy. It was at that moment that Sam started to make really funny grunting sounds and his squinty eyes started to slowly peel open to gaze up at Dean. He couldn't tell if Sammy was really seeing him because his eyes still seemed stuck shut in some spots and they were kinda crossed but Dean was pretty sure he could. So he put his one free hand into Sammy's blanket and pulled out his arm, wiggling his pointer finger into Sam's tiny fingers that were clamped shut. "Look, Daddy! Sammy's holding my finger!"
"He sure is, Deano. He's lookin' at you, too."
"Yeah," Dean answered breathily, kind of in awe at this pretty cool little lump in his lap. "Hi, Sammy. I'm Dean. I'm your big brother. I'm gonna teach you everything. I just learned how to tie my shoes and I know you can't do that yet, but you'll be able to as soon as I show you how. And I'm gonna show you all the good toys and all the good food and I'm gonna teach you how to play and we can race each other in the back yard and..."
Just then, Sam's face started to wrinkle up and his grunting started to become a little more squeaky and he was making loud sniffling sounds through his nose.
"Alright Deano, Sammy's probably getting a little hungry. I think he needs Mommy now."
"One more second, Daddy. Okay, Sammy. I'm gonna give you back to Mommy now. But don't forget me, okay? I'm your big brother and I'm gonna be right over there. You know, if you need me."
Mom giggled a little and Dad placed Sam back in her arms but Dean just watched his brother - couldn't take his eyes off him. Dean may have only been four and a half years old, but he knew without a doubt that Sammy heard what he said and somehow understood him. And Dean was serious. He would wait right here for when Sammy needed him because he kinda figured that's what big brothers do. Plus, his arms already felt empty and he couldn't wait to hold his baby brother again.
The passenger door of the Impala slams shut and Dean finds himself watching his brother run into the office to get a room. This will be the last motel room they ever stay in together and Dean has to fight back the traitorous tears that are threatening to spill over. How the hell can this possibly be happening?
"So I gotta ask, Dean. What exactly are you afraid of? Losin'? Or losin' your brother?"
Bobby's question has been replaying in Dean's head over and over for the past few days. The answer is a no-brainer as far as Dean is concerned. The biggest shit of the deal, though, is that he's going to lose his brother either way. But this? Something must have seriously misfired in his brain for him to go along with this.
Logically, he knows Sam is a grown man, a skilled hunter, a capable human being, but he's still Sammy. He's still Dean's little brother. And he meant it when he said that it was Sam's decision and that he was on board with his stupid plan, but that doesn't make it any easier. It's been a rough couple years for them, sure, but that'll all seem like a piece of cake compared to what they'll go through if this plan actually works. Dean understands that Sam feels an obligation to do whatever it takes to cram Satan back in his box and as the big brother, he wants to be supportive. Okay, he doesn't want to be supportive, not of this anyway, but he is going to be. He's going to do whatever he can to show Sam that he respects his decision and that he trusts him - has faith in him. No matter how fucking painful it is.
But that other shit Sam was going on about in the car? Dean doesn't know how Sam could ask that of him. How was Dean supposed to just leave Sam in that literal Hell hole forever? The only reason Dean decided to go along with this is because he knew in the back of his mind that he could maybe pull some strings or find something – anything – that would get Sam back. He'd sell his soul again if he had to. Although, Sam must've seen that coming because he stopped Dean cold before he could even think up a plan. Dean's teeth grind together just thinking about what Sam said. That crap about having barbeques and living some normal apple-pie life? While Sam is...he can't be serious. It's like he doesn't know Dean at all.
Dean kneeled on the floor, playing with the Legos he got for his 6th birthday while Sammy stood in front of the TV, dancing around to some cartoon song. His baby brother wasn't quite 2 years old yet but he was pretty smart already. He bounced and hummed and blurted out every sixth word along with the song. They'd seen this one a million times. John stood in the kitchenette, talking in hushed tones on the phone and peeking his head out at them every few minutes.
"Sammy, move. I can't see the TV."
Sam would move over a few steps but his bouncing kept swaying him back in front of the screen.
"Shhh!" John hissed from the kitchen.
"Yes sir," Dean grumbled but then harshly whispered, "Sammy, move!"
Again, Sam moved over a few steps and again, after a minute, he was back in front of the TV. Dean got up and grabbed Sam around the middle, causing him to giggle. He picked the wiggling toddler up, carried him over and dropped him on the couch. Then he squatted back down and continued playing with his Legos. He looked over at Sam who barely seemed to even notice the change in his location. He got up on his knees on the couch and started bouncing his butt against his heels.
"You're such a weird kid, Sammy," Dean chuckled and shook his head before focusing back on the spaceship he was building.
"Dee!" Sam shouted through laughter and Dean glanced over to see his brother standing on the couch, fingers from one chubby, dimpled hand crammed into his mouth and jumping up and down to the music.
"Sammy!" Dean yelled, and then quickly looked over to kitchen before lowering his voice to a whisper. "Sammy, get down! You're gonna get hurt!"
Sam popped his drooly fingers out of his mouth and whisper-yelled "No!" before stuffing his fingers back in his mouth. Dean scowled. 'No' was Sam's favorite word ever.
Suddenly, out of the corner of his eye, Dean saw Sam's foot slip off the couch and before he could jump up and catch him, Sammy went tumbling face first off the couch, head cracking on the coffee table.
Dean scrambled over to his brother on the floor and propped him up into a sitting position. He looked stunned for the first few seconds and Dean thought maybe everything would be okay.
He thought too soon.
Sam looked up at Dean and all of a sudden his face crumpled, his big eyes filled with tears, his mouth screwed up tight and his lips and chin started to wiggle. Dean instantly tugged his little brother into a hug and started patting his back.
"You're okay. You'll be fine, Sammy. Okay?" Dean tried consoling him in a cheerful tone like Dad taught him but Sam just threw his head back and started wailing.
"Shhhh, Sammy. Dad's on the phone. Please stop crying. I'll fix it, okay? It's not that bad. I'll take care of you. Okay, Sammy?"
But Sam wasn't okay. Dean held Sam back to survey the damage and saw a big bump already starting to form on his forehead, the surrounding skin all red and blotchy. And he just kept bawling. Dean held his brother against him again, rubbing his hand in circles on his back, rocking him back and forth, trying to calm him down. "Shhh, c'mon, Sammy. It's gonna be okay."
That's when John stomped into the room. "What's going on in here?! Dean? What happened?"
"Sammy fell, Dad. He hit his head." Dean scootched back on the floor and let his Dad get a closer look at Sam.
"I told you to watch him!"
"I was watching him! It happened so fast. I couldn't catch him in time."
Dad knelt down and scanned Sam from head to toe, feeling around the bump on his head.
"It's okay, kiddo. You're gonna be okay. If the bump is on the outside, then it's not on the inside. That means you're gonna be fine." John petted Sam's head once, then got back up and looked at Dean.
"Listen buddy, I gotta call this person back. It's very important. Watch your brother a little closer, alright? I need you to try and keep him quiet. And in one piece, please."
John ruffled Dean's hair and then went back to the kitchen. Dean looked back at Sam who was hiccupping around the fingers he had shoved back into his mouth, his hand covered in tears, snot, and drool. He had big fat tears on his cheeks and if there was anything Dean hated most in this world, it was seeing his baby brother cry.
"C'mon, little brother. No more crying. You know what happens to little boys who cry, don't you?"
Sammy shook his head as another tear spilled out of his eye. Dean kneed forward towards Sam and whispered conspiratorially, "They get tickled!" And he crammed his head into Sammy's round little belly and started tickling his sides. Sam giggled a little, in between hiccups, which encouraged Dean. He tickled harder and Sam doubled over, laughing a little louder. Dean looked up at Sam and smiled. "See? I told you I'd make it better, Sammy." And then he kept on tickling because the sound of Sammy laughing was the best sound in the whole world.
"Dean." Cas's gravelly tone sounding from the back seat startles Dean from his memories. "Dean."
"What?!" Dean snaps and then immediately feels guilty. He clears his throat and repeats in a much calmer voice. "What is it, Cas?"
"Where um, where should I...I am sure you and Sam have much to discuss tonight."
"Huh? Oh yeah, well, uh...maybe Bobby..."
"I am sure he will understand," Cas answers with a nod but still, he just sits there. Dean is so not in the mood for the discussion he knows is coming. The silence in the car is deafening, yet he knows he is going to regret breaking it.
"Cas?" Dean reluctantly asks as he raises an eyebrow into the rearview mirror angled at the angel, well, human, in the backseat.
Dean rolls his eyes. "If you've got something to say, just spit it out, would ya?"
Cas remains silent for a moment and only when Dean lets out an aggravated sigh, does he finally speak up.
"What your brother is attempting...it...it isn't possible."
"I don't believe this," Dean mumbles frustratingly, running his hand down his face before glaring in the rear view mirror. "Cas, you said it wasn't a bad plan!"
"You misunderstand me. It is not possible for anyone but Sam. I understand you are struggling with this but I truly believe he can succeed. Dean, think of what this could mean for him."
"Yeah, I know better than anybody what it'll mean for him, Cas."
"No, I mean he will finally have the redemption he's been desperately seeking for years."
Dean whirls around in his seat to finally face Cas and the ridiculous bullshit that's spewing out of his mouth. "Redemption? Are you fuckin' joking?" Dean bites out with a sarcastic laugh.
"No great. Really. That's...terrific. So he's redeemed and then gets to spend eternity in the cage. Yeah that's...that's freakin' wonderful. You know what? Get out, Cas. Go find Bobby. See you in the morning." Dean waves his hand at the door in dismissal.
Cas takes the hint and opens the door but then stops again and says, "Dean."
Dean sighs and looks up at the ceiling of the car, thinking for at least the billionth time in the past two years about how he's absolutely correct in believing all supernatural beings, angels and demons
, especially, love to hear the sound of their own voices. And just to further prove him right, Cas continues.
"I have been observing you and your brother for a long time and I have always noticed your propensity to put him first. You want what is best for him even if it is not what is best for you. You are a good brother, Dean. You should be proud of yourself. And you should be proud of Sam."
With that, Cas gets out of the car and goes to join Bobby, who is just exiting the hotel office, having gotten himself his own room for the night.
"Easy for you to say," Dean grumbles to himself before slamming his hand down on the steering wheel. Good brother. Right.
Just then, Dean sees Sam exit the office and head back towards the car. They're staying in some dump in Waukegan, just north of Chicago. They have to drive the rest of the way to Detroit tomorrow and need to get a good night sleep, which would be a laughable concept if Dean had any ability in him to laugh. But Cas is right. He just wants these last few hours alone with his brother. The rest of the world be damned. Which it is, actually. That's pretty much the problem.
With a creak, the door opens and Sam climbs back in. Dean sees him out of the corner of his eye just sitting there staring at him. He can feel the air getting thick with tension and he just can't do this. He has to stop Sam before he begins because if Sam starts talking about feelings and shit, Dean's going to completely break down. And it won't be pretty.
"Huh? Oh, room 27. Around the back."
Dean shifts the car into drive and pulls around the building. Sam turns his head to glance in the backseat and then looks back over at Dean.
"Went with Bobby. I think he felt like he was intruding on brother bonding time or something."
"Wow. That was...really...thoughtful. I guess. God, it's weird to see him acting so human."
"Yeah, well, pretty much everything about that guy is weird, so... Here we are. Grab your shit."
They get out, walk around to the trunk and start grabbing their duffels and a few weapons. Just in case. Dean looks over and notices Bobby unloading the trunk of his car that's parked a few doors down.
"'Night boys. Don't stay up all night. Gotta get an early start." Bobby stands there looking in their direction for a few seconds before finally heading into his room with Castiel.
"Right," Dean answers, while Sam hefts his bag over his shoulder and heads for the room. Dean scans the trunk one last time to make sure they have everything they need when his eyes fall on the jugs of blood in the corner. Demon blood. For Sam. Jesus.
"That's great, Sammy."
"You're not even lookin'."
Dean looked up from his comic book and there was 4-year-old Sammy, hair sticking up all over, one leg of his sweatpants shoved up to his knee, one dingy threadbare white sock hanging half off his left foot and one navy blue sock that almost looked too small on his right, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle sweatshirt all smeared with grape jelly, and the biggest smile on his round dimpled face.
"I made sammiches, Dean! All by m'self." He looked so proud.
Dean rolled his eyes. "Wow, Sammy, you really didn't have to do that. And I see you dressed yourself too, huh squirt?"
Sam stumbled a little, while excitedly scurrying toward Dean but managed to keep the pile of sandwiches on the plate. He plunked it down on the coffee table and then climbed belly first onto the couch before flopping around and sitting upright next to Dean. At first, Dean cringed, thinking about all the jelly Sam just smeared all over the couch when climbing up but when he looked down and saw the proud look on Sam's face, he just shook his head while breathing out a laugh.
"I take it we're having peanut butter and jelly?"
Sam nodded enthusiastically and then reached a sticky hand up to push his hair back off his forehead.
"Mmhmm. N'you get'a have the first one."
Dean grabbed the top sandwich, which was globbed with way too much peanut butter, took a bite and mmmm'd like it was the best thing he'd ever tasted.
"Pretty good cooking, little brother."
"I knowed how 'cause I watched you," Sam proclaimed around a mouthful of the sticky food. "Now I can help you sometimes."
"Dean? You need help with something?"
Dean blinks a few times, noticing Sam standing in the door to their motel room, holding it open and waiting for Dean to come in.
He slams the trunk against the blood and the memories, heaves a huge sigh and walks to the room feeling like a man on death row walking to his meaningless, inevitable end. Sam moves aside as Dean enters, shutting the door behind him and wondering if he should even bother with the salt lines tonight. There's nothing to keep out that's more terrifying than what they're facing tomorrow. Actually, considering what's going to happen in Detroit, he'd rather they both die tonight. Sam clears his throat and looks up at him.
"Dean, I know, man. I mean, I'd ask what's up with you but...you know I have to do this, right? And look, I know this is hard for you...I do, but...I have to...I just...c'mere."
Dean searches his brother's face. He looks so sad. He knows Sam is scared shitless but the sadness, well, that's the real kicker. Sam is sad for Dean. He's worried about Dean.
Looking at Sam standing there, arms outstretched, puppy eyes boring into him and penetrating his fucking soul - he can't do this. It probably doesn't matter what's going to happen tomorrow, doesn't even matter what he promised Sam, because at this moment, Dean's pretty sure he isn't going to survive the night. He's starting to feel like there's no air in the room, like he can't catch his breath and he's starting to shake. His heart is breaking and it's definitely going to kill him. In fact, Dean's praying it will. Quickly. He doesn't want to live anymore. There couldn't possibly be any life for him after this.
"C'mon, Dean. Please?"
"No way, man. Dad would have my ass!"
"Yeah, like he's gonna find out. He's never here," Sam mumbled petulantly. "I just wanna try it once."
"No, Sam. End of discussion."
"You were driving when you were twelve."
"Yeah, only when Dad was too hurt or too unconscious to drive."
Sam rolled his eyes. "Too unconscious, Dean?"
"Bite me. You know what I meant."
"Come on. I promise I'll go slow. I'll do whatever you say. Besides, what happens if you and Dad both get hurt, huh? What if neither of you are able to drive? What if you're both too unconscious?" Sam momentarily grinned proudly at his own lame joke but then continued pleading his case. "Do you really want my first time behind the wheel to be when I'm all scared and nervous about my dad and brother bleeding out?"
"God, you're such a drama queen, Samantha."
"Am not! I'm being serious. And practical. In fact, I bet Dad would think I'm right. This should be part of my training. You've trained me to fight, to throw knives. Hell, you've trained me to shoot. This isn't any more dangerous than any of that."
"Nice arguments, Matlock, but the answer's still no."
Sam started to roll his eyes but then stopped as if an idea suddenly came to him. Dean could see what he wass planning before he even didit. Shit. Dean's screwed. He almost didn't look but couldn't help himself as Sam's face relaxed and his eyes slowly softened and opened a little more and then there they were. The puppy eyes; Dean's biggest weakness.
He looks up at Sam with a sigh and starts walking past him towards his bag.
"I gotta lay the salt lines. You can have first shower."
"Dean, don't do this. Please. You can't...don't shut me out. Not tonight. I mean, this is it, man."
"You think I don't know that?!" Dean snaps. Sam visibly flinches and Dean instantly feels guilty but he can't help it coming out like that. He's pissed. He's beyond pissed. Only...not at Sam. He's pissed at the angels. He's pissed at God. He's pissed at himself. His whole life has been about protecting Sam; keeping him safe. And he's been a miserable failure at it for as long as he can remember. And this? Standing by and watching his little brother take on Lucifer? That's the ultimate failure. But Sam's right. This is it. He can't waste a single minute; especially not yelling at Sam. Then he remembers how few minutes he actually has left with Sam and breaks out in a cold sweat. He drops his head down, his chin resting on his chest, a shaky thumb and finger squeezing the bridge of his nose. "M'sorry. I just...I don't know if I can handle this."
"Yeah, well, I know I can't. Not without you. So just...forget about the salt. Forget the shower. I need you. Please."
And there's no way Dean can refuse that. He slowly shuffles towards Sam, his feet dragging, feeling like they each weigh 50 pounds. He stops in front of his brother and Sam lifts his hand up to stroke Dean's cheek, his thumb scratching back and forth over the slight stubble before grabbing him and pulling him into a tight hug. Dean goes willingly – like he could stop himself now – and wraps his arms around his brother, digging his fingers into Sam's back so hard, he's afraid they're going to sink right in. He buries his head into Sam's neck and feels the dam break. The tears are flowing and Sam is kissing his temple, rubbing his hands up and down his back, whispering 'thank you' over and over into Dean's hair.
"Thanks, Dean. Really. I mean, I know this isn't exactly your thing but I couldn't do it without your help."
"No big deal, Sammy. Let's just do this so we can move on to bigger and better things."
"It's Sam. And since when is crap take-out and fuzzy black-and-white TV 'bigger and better things'?"
"Since you asked me to help you study, Sammy."
"Jerk," Sam mumbled, as he closed his book and pushed it aside.
"Bitch," Dean replied automatically, as if it was a reflex.
Sam huffed. "Whatever. Ok, now, just read the questions I've written out. You can read Spanish, right? Just in case, I've got the translations right there."
"Ahh Sammy," Dean smirked, "you know this is all just geek to me."
"C'mon, Dean, I've really gotta do well on this test." Sam practically whined, in, much to Dean's amusement, obvious agitation.
"What's the big deal? It's Freshman Spanish. It's not like you're ever gonna need it. Besides, your chances of acing it have to be pretty high, considering the huge-ass brain you're sportin' inside that giant head of yours. Not to mention, Dad's been having us read foreign languages since you were 12."
"Yeah, well, this isn't just memorizing spells and exorcisms, Dean. It's for school. It's conversing in complete sentences and verb conjugations and –”
Dean snorted a laugh. "God, you are such a nerd." He shook his head fondly and not for the first time marveled over how they could possibly be related as Sam just kept blathering on.
“– we've only been here two weeks and I can't afford to get a bad grade. So please? Can you just –”
Dean held his hands up in mock defense. "Alright, alright. But after this, we are watching movies and stuffing our faces like normal people."
"Yeah right. Normal. Dean, you wouldn't know normal if it came up and smacked you in the ass."
"Oh Sammy, you say that like it's a bad thing. Okay, ready?"
"Yeah." And then Sam gave him a grin. "Thanks, Dean."
"Don't. Don't thank me, Sammy. I can't...I...just don't." His voice is raspy and thick with emotion and he just stands there, crumpled in Sam's arms, crying quietly and not caring in the slightest about appearing less than manly.
Sam kisses the top of his head before pulling back, hands in a loose grip around Dean's arms while rubbing them up and down. "I know you don't wanna hear it, but...it really means a lot to me that you're backing me up on this. I just want you to know that."
Dean looks up at Sam and by the sad look of understanding and empathy that Sam is currently aiming at him, he knows the hopelessness and fear he's feeling is written all over his face. He suddenly feels a surge of defensiveness rush through him for a moment, because why the hell shouldn't he feel hopeless? Detroit. They were on their way to fucking Detroit. "Heavyweight showdown in Detroit. From what I understand, Sam didn't make it." The sound of his future self’s cold, emotionless voice echoes in his ears and then morphs into Lucifer's version of Sam. "No matter what you do, no matter what details you alter, we will always end up...here." Son of a bitch.
Dean roughly runs his hand down his face, scrubbing the tears away before resting his hand on his mouth. "God, this is...this is so hard. How am I..." Dean sniffles, clears his throat, and slowly heads towards the bathroom. "I'm just gonna get ready for bed."
." Sam quietly whispers and Dean slowly turns back around to face his brother. "There's just...there's something else I gotta say."
Dean's pretty sure there's nothing else Sam could say at this point that won't make him completely lose what little shred of sanity he's clinging to, but he just stands there waiting. He idly thinks about how that son of a bitch, Famine, couldn't have been more wrong about him – he feels this pain more vividly than he's ever felt anything before – as Sam appears to be working up the courage to say whatever it is he's going to say.
"If this doesn't work –”
"It's gonna work, Sam." And it will. How could it not? Heaven, Hell, and everyfuckingthing in between seem determined to rip his little brother away from him. Then the vision of his brother all in white, that fucking smug smirk and his voice dripping with patronizing sympathy, violates Dean's thoughts again for a second and he slams his eyes shut against the wave of nausea threatening him.
"But if it doesn't, Dean, you have to promise me..."
Dean scoffs, eyes opening and locking with Sam's liquid pleading eyes.
"...that you'll get the hell outta there. No matter what."
"Absolutely not." He's not even going to pretend considering this one. No way is he letting Sam go alone. Not with Lucifer riding him. He'd rather die first. He will die first.
Sam throws his arms out to the side exasperatedly. "So then what? Huh? I'm serious, man. I will not let him use me to kill you."
"Sam...if you think for one second that I'm leaving you alone with him while you're not in control, you're fucking crazier than I thought. No way in...just, no way, alright? Jesus." Dean turns around again, facing away from Sam, staring down at the filthy carpet.
"You..." Sam blurts out, roughly combing both hands through his hair and taking a long deep breath. "I get it. Okay? I do. And I'm grateful you wanna protect me but...but c'mon, there's no reason both of us have to die, here!"
Dean sadly shakes his head, still gazing down at the floor, a twisted, completely unhappy smile on his face. "You're kidding, right? You've gotta be kidding, because I know you know better than that, Sam. I mean, I don't wanna go all DiCaprio on you here, but 'you die, I die' and there's no changing that."
"That's just..." Sam shakes his head, clearly frustrated, but Dean couldn't give two shits.
"That's stupid. I thought we had all this squared away already. What happened to 'if this is what you want then I'll back your play'? Huh? What happened to it not being up to you to let me do anything?"
"I'm not telling you what to do or what not to do. I'm telling you what I'm not gonna do. And I'm not leaving you, Sam. I won't do it," Dean explains with a shrug.
"Dean, either we go into this together or we don't go in at all."
Dean turns around quickly and lifts his arms out at his sides. "Great. Problem solved. I'll just call Bobby and Cas and tell 'em we're not goin'."
"I'm serious, Dean."
“So am I!” Dean grits his teeth, trying to stamp down the frustration that’s boiling up inside him. “Look, I've promised you way more than I'm comfortable with already but I'm not giving in on this one, Sam. So if you can't live with that, then we better just come up with a plan B."
"There is no plan –” Sam explodes, but seemingly catches himself quickly, running his hand down his face, letting out a deep sigh and walking slowly towards Dean, one hand reaching out to grab Dean's hand. "Look, I know I've asked you for a lot. And I know this isn't easy for you..."
Dean snorts because, understatement, but he lets Sam continue because as much as Dean would like to believe he's going to get out of this on a technicality, he knows it's not happening.
"...and Dean, I am so sorry. I'm sorry that everything I've done has led us here and now you're going to be the one left behind. I would give anything...anything to take all this back. But I can't. This has to be done and it has to be me."
Dean looks down to where their hands are joined, where Sam is holding his hand with one of his, while running his fingers of the other over the top of them.
Sam lets out a sad sigh and adds, "But I have to be focused. I'm scared, man. I'm really, really scared. And mostly, I'm scared for you. I don't want you getting hurt if I fail."
Dean squints up at his brother like he's lost his damn mind. Because obviously he has. What Sam just said is so far past stupid that Dean doesn't have the slightest idea what to say. So he says what he always says when he has no other words.
"C'mon, just...just promise me you'll think about it, alright? If this thing goes sideways and there's nothing you can do, just please, please get away, Dean. For me?" Sam then reaches up and cups Dean's face and Dean feels nauseous all over again.
Everything he felt all those times he lost Sam before are all compounding together and threatening to crush him under their weight. He reaches up to place his hand on Sam's face in a mirror image of his brother and their eyes lock. It's completely overwhelming. This couldn't be more agonizing, and he suddenly finds himself nostalgic for hellhounds, because at least that was a quick death.
But then Sam leans in and slowly runs his lips over Dean's. It's dry and their lips drag against each other but it's the most soul-deep kiss Dean has ever felt. Because he suddenly remembers again for the millionth time tonight that this is it. He runs his hand up Sam's arm and clenches his bicep, squeezing so hard it hurts his fingers. He doesn't want to let go. Doesn't ever want to let go. He reaches up and grasps the back of Sam's neck, pushing their mouths even closer together, both of them moaning, breathing heavily, muttering words of 'love' and 'please' into each other's mouths.
Dean slammed open the bedroom door of their current shack of the week and saw Sam sitting on the edge of his bed facing away towards the window. He wasn't sure he wanted to know what the hell just happened, but he couldn't not know either.
His brother had just kissed him. His innocent baby brother just laid one on him and there was nothing innocent about it.
Dean had honestly never thought of Sam that way. Why the hell would he have? He was his fucking brother. But then again, now that it happened, no way was he ever going to forget what it felt like. Even more disturbing was the fact that he had been half hard since it happened. What the hell was he supposed to do with that?
Ignore it, that's what. Ignore it because that's what was best for Sam.
"Go away, Dean."
"Yeah, I don't think so. You mind telling me what the hell that was back there?"
"Come on, Dean. You really need me to explain it to you? Trust me, I've seen enough to know that you're not exactly inexperienced. I've seen enough to want to gouge my eyes out, actually."
And why did that last sentence, muttered miserably from Sam's mouth, suddenly make Dean feel guilty? Sam was his brother, for Christ's sake. He was more than his brother. He was his best friend. And more often than not, Sam was like a son to Dean. So many lines crossed for so many years, and now Dean was actually shocked that this line being crossed doesn't shock him nearly as much as it should. He was running that crazy-ass thought over and over in his head when Sam's soft voice interrupted him.
"Dean, I know exactly how messed up this is; how messed up I am, but I can't help it. And I can't control it. I'm not sure I even want to."
Sam was so quiet, Dean had to strain to hear him. He just sat there on his bed, looking down at his lap and picked at a hangnail. Dean tried to understand what Sam was saying but it was all so insane, and frighteningly not insane at the same time. So much so, that it made Dean's head spin. It was like one of those dogs who were so goddamn ugly, they were the cutest thing ever. Or a scary movie that was so gory it made you laugh your ass off.
That kiss was so very wrong; so not something that should have ever happened, and yet it felt so perfect that Dean found himself wanting it to happen over and over again.
"What the hell are you talking about?"
Dean knew it was weak but in his defense, he was so confused he couldn't see straight. What the hell was the matter with him? He got hard from his baby brother sticking his tongue in his mouth. If there was a Hell, and Dean's seen sufficient evidence that there was, he definitely just booked a one-way ticket there. You'd think that would have scared him away from this fucked up thing he was feeling, but then Sam turned around to face him and it took Dean's breath away. He was so young. He looked so tired, so weary, so...world-wise at 15, and it broke Dean's heart. All Dean ever wanted was for Sam to be a kid with a semi-normal life, as normal as it could possibly get for them.
But this? This wasn't normal. It terrified Dean because he wanted to fight Sam on this, protect him from it, but at the same time, his brain kept replaying that kiss over and over again in his mind. And God help him, he didn't want it to stop. But then Sam's eyes looked up into his and it felt like a stab to the heart.
Sam looked at Dean like he was some kind of fucking hero, but how could Dean possibly save either of them from this? Especially when he didn't want to. Sam's eyes were filled with tears and one finally spilled over and ran down his cheek.
"Dean, I love you. I...I think I'm in love with you."
Sam is moaning into Dean's mouth, "God, Dean…love you so much. I need you."
Over and over and over in a prayer-like chant and it just spurs Dean on. His hands are everywhere. They're touching every part of Sam and still it isn't enough. Dean pulls Sam's shirt apart, splitting buttons from fabric, shoving his hands up the t-shirt underneath and feeling the warm skin over his muscular breath-heaving chest. He can't get close enough. He pulls at Sam's shirt and Sam twists and wiggles, letting his outer shirt drop to the floor before Dean is shoving his t-shirt up, bunching it up towards his neck and armpits until they're forced to separate while Dean pulls it over Sam's head, only to reconnect again before the shirt actually hits the floor.
Whenever they do this, sometimes it's slow, sometimes frantic, sometimes angry, most of the times loving; but always, always it is never enough for Dean. He can never get enough of Sam. It's like Dean wants to crawl inside of him and stay there forever. It's a noticeable throbbing ache that can never possibly be soothed. Dean pulls back for just a moment, staring up and down from Sam's face down to his stomach and back up again. He leans in and kisses up Sam's neck, gently kissing and nipping his way back to his mouth. He covers Sam's lips with his own and they're both very still. It's unbelievably quiet except for the matching thrum of their heartbeats, but then Dean suddenly crashes head first into the realization that after tonight, his heart will forever be beating alone.
A sob that barely sounds human tears out of him as he grabs the sides of Sam's face and dives back into Sam's mouth again, licking and kissing like there's no tomorrow – God, if only.
He walks them both until Sam's back hits the wall and he lets out an "ooof" and then everything stops again. Dean's mouth on Sam's, Sam's hands on Dean's face, Dean's hands tangled in Sam's hair. They stop moving and just breathe into each other's mouths; eyes closed against the reality of what's happening. Dean reluctantly moves from Sam's mouth and slumps down, burying his face in Sam's warm comforting chest and with a long sad sigh, whimpers, "Please...Sammy, don't leave me."