|Atlas and Heracles
Author: Sapphyre Blu PM
It takes an exhausted Dean, a feverish Sam and some talk about Greek myths for Dean to accept that sometimes big brothers need help.Rated: Fiction K - English - Hurt/Comfort/Family - Bobby S. & Dean W. - Words: 2,598 - Reviews: 11 - Favs: 31 - Follows: 2 - Published: 02-26-09 - Status: Complete - id: 4887030
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
A/N: Story doesn't have too much of a point. It's just something that was running in my head and I thought I would write down.
There were three things Dean knew to be infinitely true. The first was that no matter what, he would always love Sam. The second, Highway to Hell was the best album AC/DC put out. The third, draugrs sucked…big time. The first he knew since he was four, the second since he was ten, and the last one he found out two hours ago.
Dean hardly slept in the last three days. He was driving in South Dakota when he called Bobby.
"Hey Bobby it's me," he said after the older man answered. "Listen, I think I'm going to check into a motel and stop at your place tomorrow."
"Dean I'd much rather you two came over here. You're only 50 miles out of town."
"I know Bobby. I don't think I slept more than 4 hours in the last three days."
"What exactly were you boys hunting?"
"Draugr," Bobby heard Dean yawn.
"I thought those were limited to Europe. They're some kind of ghosts aren't they?"
"This guy was from Europe. Miracles of modern travel right? And to answer your second question, yeah it was a ghost, a frickin strong ghost that you cannot kill with weapons. Sam and I wrestled it back to its grave. Bobby I am really tired. I just want to find a motel."
"Why don't you let Sam drive?"
"Sam's sick. He needs to sleep." Dean looked over at his brother slumped halfway against him.
"What's wrong with him?"
"I don't know. He was showing signs of a fever yesterday. I let him sleep as much as I could, but I needed his help with the Draugr. It didn't help that he was grabbed by the neck and thrown against a tree by that blasted thing."
"How is he now?"
"His fever has gone up to 102 and I'm sure he's sore, but he's sleeping."
"You checked his temp before you started driving?" Bobby was only making conversation at this point.
"Then how do you know his temperature?"
"Sam acts differently with almost each degree his fever goes up."
"Explain that to me, kid."
"Bobby, I am really tired," Dean emphasized.
"I know, but better hunters than you have been killed falling asleep behind the wheel, now explain what you just said."
"I don't know ever since Sam was little you could tell his temperature just by looking at him or his actions."
"Tell me about each one," Bobby encouraged. He heard Dean grumble and swear.
"When the fever is low, the only difference is that he is paler than usual and lower energy. When the fever gets to about 101 he starts shivering. 102 he gets clingy. He'll grab my wrist if I'm passing by, or he'll just track me with his eyes whenever he is awake. 103 the shivering gets worse and the clingy kid turns into the cranky stubborn kid. That is when it is hard to get him to take medicine or drink some liquids."
When Dean didn't go any further Bobby asked "What about 104?"
"That's the highest he has ever gotten. I've only seen it twice. He goes delusional by that stage. He starts walking without purpose, or cowering at imaginary objects. He's very weak though. I could guide him back to bed, but he didn't even recognize me when I was standing right in front of him.
'I see a motel just up ahead. I'm going to pull over and get a room. And Bobby?"
"There are no better hunters than me."
"That's because they all fell asleep behind the wheel."
He could hear Dean let out a tired laugh.
"Text me the motel you're staying at along with the room number," Bobby told him before he hung up. "I'll drop by tomorrow."
"Will do," Dean said and hung up.
Bobby hung up the phone, but something wasn't sitting right with him. It was 2 in the morning and sleep didn't feel like it was coming. Something was wrong, but he wasn't sure what.
'Sam' he thought to himself 'it has to be Sam.'
Bobby realized with Dean, as exhausted as he was, would be doing the sleep of the dead. It would be hard for him to hear if Sam needed any help. With that, he grabbed the keys to his truck and left.
When Bobby arrived he saw Sam first. Not in bed and not even in his motel room; Sam was heading for the middle of an intersection in nothing more than his boxers.
The old hunter murmured something under his breath and pulled his truck off the road.
"Sam!" he called as a car honked at the young man and swerved around him.
"Sam!" he called again and ran to the hunter.
Sam looked at him and then looked terrified. He backed away as fast as he could. He probably would have backed into another passing car had Bobby not grabbed him and yanked away. Sam faced him with feverish eyes and tried to pull out of the older man's grasp.
"I've gotcha," Bobby said leading the youngest Winchester out of the intersection.
Sam still wriggled and mumbled incoherently, but he was too weak to put up a real fight. Bobby got him back to the motel room. The door was wide open. Dean was sleeping. Bobby pushed Sam in and shut the door. Sam walked to the middle of the room and stood there unmoving. Bobby locked the door and moved over to Sam. He got the tall man to sit down on a chair before he dug through the brothers' first aid kit to find a thermometer. Sam flinched when it was placed in his ear, but he wasn't fighting him this time. 104.8, Bobby shouldn't have been surprised given his conversation with Dean. Still, he couldn't believe Dean could predict his brother's actions merely by the intensity of his fever.
"Alright, kid, we need to get that fever down," he whispered to him.
Sam sat rocking and whispering to himself.
Bobby saw two untouched pills on the nightstand with a glass of water right by them. Dean probably was trying to get Sam to take the medicine, but he was being uncooperative. Dean had no way of knowing Sam's fever would get worse and he would become delusional. He took Sam's arm and pulled him up.
"I don't want to die," Sam's voice barely came out as a whisper.
"Nobody's gonna hurt you Sam," Bobby reassured him.
He led Sam back to his bed and laid him down. Sam kept muttering nonsense, but his voice was squeaky. Bobby realized it had to be his throat. Didn't Dean say he was grabbed by the throat? The old hunter turned on the lamp next to Sam's bed. He got a better look at the young man. Sam was cut and bruised from the draugr and his feet were muddy from his late night stroll. Bobby tilted Sam's chin up and got a good look at his throat. It was red with the perfect imprint of a hand around it, but it didn't look damaged enough to be affecting Sam's voice the way it did. He found the spot least damaged by the draugr and touched him as carefully as he could. Careful or not Sam gasped weakly and recoiled as far as he could on his bed.
"Okay," Bobby said in a placating voice. He turned his back to Sam and looked at the pills on the nightstand. "Let's make these easier to swallow." He looked back to say something to Sam, but in that short time the boy headed back for the door.
Bobby put himself between Sam and the door.
"Sam, Sam," he kept calling.
Sam didn't recognize him. He kept trying to open the door around Bobby. Sam was becoming panicky and it worried Bobby. He didn't want to have to wake Dean up, but he needed help. He pushed Sam away from the door and onto his bed. He then went over to Dean and shook the boy awake.
"Bobby?" Dean said confused.
"104.8," was all Bobby had to say.
"Geez, Sammy," Dean said getting out of bed and heading straight over to his brother. He couldn't believe the intensity of the heat radiating from him.
"I tried to get him to take some medicine, but he wouldn't do it. I thought he would just sleep through the night. I didn't think his fever would get this bad."
"It's not your fault Dean. Get some clothes on him. His throat is badly swollen. I'll make these pills easier for him to swallow."
Bobby took the two pills from the nightstand along with the entire bottle they came in. He went into the bathroom and crushed them with a heavy glass. Bobby even took another pill and cut it in half before crushing it as well. He had to compensate for Sam's size. The entire time, he could hear Dean talking to his brother. Bobby took the pill powder and put it into a small glass. He diluted it with as little water as he possibly could. He knew it would be painful for Sam to swallow, so he had to make sure he would only have to swallow as little as possible.
Bobby came back into the room and saw Dean threading one of Sam's arms through a shirt sleeve.
"Why are his feet muddy?" Dean asked without turning around.
"Don't worry about that," Bobby said handing him the medicated liquid.
"Sam, Sammy, I need you to drink this for me," he held the drink to his lips.
Sam turned away from the glass and backed away from Dean. The oldest Winchester dropped his head for a second then looked back up.
He only backed away further. Dean turned to Bobby with the most heartbroken look Bobby hadn't seen in months. No words were actually spoken between the two, but much was said.
"Do we really have to?" Dean asked aloud.
"He's almost at 105," Bobby concurred.
Dean sighed deeply and gave the cup to Bobby. There movements after that were so fluid; anyone else would have thought Dean and Bobby had rehearsed for this very night. Dean got his little brother to lie down on his back. He pinned down his shoulders and Bobby moved for the youngster's head. Sam panicked and struggled the best he could. Bobby pried his jaw open and poured the diluted ibuprofen inside. Sam started to make a move to spit it out, but Bobby covered his mouth.
"Swallow Sam, get it over with," Dean ordered him.
Sam swallowed. It hurt him. They could see that. His whole body seemed to wince. He curled into himself as soon as Bobby and Dean let him go.
"Did he remember anything the other two times it was this bad?"
"No," Dean answered, "but I still don't feel any better. He went outside didn't he? That's why his feet are muddy?"
"It's okay Dean, I brought him back."
"I should have been watching out for him."
"Dean, you were exhausted."
"It doesn't matter," he raised his voice.
Sam whimpered in his fetal position on the bed. Dean rubbed his back and Bobby let his hand rest on the boy's head. No one could ever say that kid wasn't loved.
"Dean, I know you would do anything for your brother, but you're not Atlas, you can't carry the world."
Dean got up and Bobby followed suit. Dean put light covers over Sam and stood over his little brother's sleeping form.
"Don't you get it Bobby? Sam is my world. The night mom died, Dad thrust Sam into my arms and told me to get him out of the house. I did. Then dad carried both of us out before the explosion. I carried Sam and Dad carried me. That's how it always went until dad died. Now it's just me and Sam."
Dean sat on a chair and Bobby sat facing him on the foot of Sam's bed.
"Heracles," Bobby said.
"Atlas didn't carry the world the entire time, Heracles helped him."
"Are you seriously comparing yourself to the strong man of Greek mythology?"
"All I'm saying is go to sleep and let me take care of Sam."
"I'm not tired anymore Bobby."
He said this as he was half way slumped over in his chair. Bobby sat quietly. Dean would nod off then wake himself up when his head hit his chest. The fourth time he did it he looked at Bobby. Dean gave Bobby a hard look. Then he looked from his comfortable bed to his brother sleeping fitfully.
"Bobby you promise me…"
"I will wake you up if he takes a turn for the worse."
"Or, if he takes another stroll."
Dean rested his head in his hands. "Why do I feel like such a failure?"
Bobby let out an exasperated sigh. He grabbed Dean's arms and pulled him up. Bobby walked him to his bed and sat him down.
"You're not a failure as a big brother because you need to take care of yourself. How can you take care of Sammy if you don't take care of yourself? I'll watch out for Sam."
He more or less pushed Dean down on his bed and helped him get his feet up.
"Go to sleep Dean."
Dean slithered under his covers before looking at Bobby with half closed eyes.
"Bobby, you carry me…" he fell asleep before he could say anything else.
Bobby didn't know if that was a question, demand or simply an observation. He let it slide and pulled up a chair and sat right between the two boys. Two hours later he was bored and walked beside the beds to get the Gideon's Bible from the nightstand. His wrist was grabbed. He turned around and saw Sam. He sat down on Sam's bed and put his hand on his forehead. Sam leaned into his touch. 102, clingy Sam: Bobby didn't even consult the thermometer this time. His fever had gone down, this was good.
"You remember much?" he asked the fevered man.
"Heracles," Sam said.
Bobby told him the story of what had transpired between him and Dean. "There's a difference though," he said. "Atlas didn't want to carry the world. He tried to abandon Heracles. Dean would sooner crumble than let anything happen to you." He said even though Sam had fallen back asleep in the middle of the story.
He looked between Dean and Sam both sleeping soundly now. Hell on wheels, both of them, but there wasn't a thing in the world he could want in place of either one. He sat back on his seat between the two beds.
"Your guys' daddy isn't here to help you boys, but I am," he whispered to the sleeping men.