Author: gidgetgal9 PM
Sam begins to have intense nightmares that put him on the edge of sanity. Will Dean be able to find the cause before he loses his brother? Dedicated to Floralia for her birthday. Co-written by sendintheclowns and beta'd by BlueEyedDemonLiz.Rated: Fiction T - English - Drama/Supernatural - Sam W. & Dean W. - Chapters: 10 - Words: 30,744 - Reviews: 113 - Favs: 56 - Follows: 48 - Updated: 06-05-09 - Published: 04-25-09 - Status: Complete - id: 5018507
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Co-written by Sendintheclowns
Dean tried his best to hang on to Sam who was bucking like a rodeo bronco. His little brother was in intense pain and there was nothing Dean could do about it.
That was the absolute worst…seeing Sam in distress and not being able to stop it.
The convulsions finally eased and Dean thought maybe, just maybe, Sam was going to beat this thing. "Sammy, are you okay?"
Sam's eyes slid toward Dean's face, wet and unfocused. His little brother tried to nod but the motion turned into a gasp.
And then Sam heaved violently, arching against the mattress, head thrashing.
His lips were turning an interesting shade of blue. Dean loved the color blue but not on someone's lips. Not on Sammy.
"Shit! Sammy! You need to breathe. Shit, you can't breathe, can you? Hang on…shit. Sam! You don't get to leave me…"
Dean's concern bubbled out as anger, his words hurled at top volume. He wasn't mad at his brother. He wasn't. But Sammy wasn't breathing and Dean didn't know what to do and…
Dean grasped Sam firmly and flipped him on his side into recovery position. Sam couldn't dislodge whatever was preventing him from breathing and Dean screaming at him wasn't going to solve the problem.
It was awkward but Dean snaked one arm under Sam's body and the other around him until his hands met at Sam's stomach. Dean curled one hand into a fist, placing that thumb just above Sam's bellybutton. Grabbing a hold of the fist with his other hand, Dean thrust upward, driving his fist into Sam's abdomen with five successive squeeze-thrusts.
Sam coughed weakly, Dean's efforts forcing scant air through his diaphragm. But the cough sounded fake and Dean could tell by the way Sam's chest remained still under his hands that his brother still wasn't breathing on his own.
Dean repeated the whole awkward procedure, desperate for a sign that Sam was drawing breath.
"That's it, Dean. I think it's working." Bobby's voice was low and steady but just below the surface Dean detected something foreign – fear.
Cursing the demon and the situation under his breath, Dean performed his modified Heimlich once again.
A hoarse cough, more forceful this time, erupted from Sam's lips. A dark substance dribbled from his brother's slack lips. Less slug and more slime, the black, tarry substance slithered out of Sam's mouth before dissipating into the air in a fine steam.
Dean removed his hands from Sam's middle, pushing the hair from his brother's face. The color was seeping back into the skin, turning it from ashen to pink as Sam continued to hack.
One hand settled at the back of Sam's neck while Dean's other hand continued to brush the long, damp bangs away from his forehead in a soothing motion. "That's it, Sammy, get it all out. I've got you."
The coughing subsided to an occasional gasp and Sam turned himself from his side to his back, grasping at Dean's arm as he went. "Need…sit up…"
Still dangerously out of breath, Sam's chest heaved in and out, making up for lost time. Bobby slid a hand behind Sam's shoulder and started to lever him up but Dean swatted his hand away. It was Dean's job to take care of Sam. No one else's.
Dean glared at the older hunter but Bobby glared right back. "He'll breathe easier if you sit him up."
Damn. Dean knew that. He quickly complied, pulling Sam into a sitting position. His brother grimaced, either his wounded shoulder or bruised tailbone making itself known. Dean sank down on the mattress, squeezing behind Sam, pulling his brother back against his chest. "In and out, Sammy. That's it. You did it."
It could have been minutes or hours as Dean lost track of time, his whole attention focused on Sam's labored breathing. It finally eased and Sam's head drooped against Dean's shoulder, the tension fleeing his body.
Sam had finally given in to exhaustion and fallen asleep.
Dean realized his right hand had continued to stroke through Sam's hair in rhythm with his brother's inhalations. His hand dropped from Sam's head guiltily. He'd been petting his brother.
The sounds of stifled mirth made its way to Dean and he turned his head to find Bobby perched in the doorway, arms crossed over his chest.
Dean had been petting Sam and Bobby had seen it. He'd never live this down.
The older man straightened from the doorway, a deep smile creasing his face. "If you're, ahem, finished here I'm pretty sure Sam will have himself a well earned siesta. How about you go rustle up something to eat and I'll keep your brother company until you're done?"
Ignoring the humor on Bobby's face, Dean slid out from behind Sam, easing him back down to the mattress. Dean didn't like the way Sam's body limply flopped in his arms but he'd known going in to the ritual that his brother would need sleep and lots of it. Nothing like wrestling with a dream demon to exhaust a body. And mind.
Wondering if Sam would be okay when he woke up, Dean reluctantly left his brother's side. He'd cram in some food – not salad, though – and then stand vigil over his sleeping brother.
Sam's chest and throat hurt. Not I'm coming down with a cold but shit, it really hurts to breathe and swallow.
His hands crept up to his neck but were intercepted by cool, calloused fingers. "Just relax, Sam. The dream demon is gone. We did it."
He could hear the satisfaction in Dean's voice and he wanted to see his brother's face. See for himself that everything was okay.
Eyelids lifted and then slammed shut several times before Sam was able to keep them open. Next came focusing his eyes. He could make out the outline of his brother standing there but his features were blurry.
Something thrummed in his throat. Like fingers tickling piano keys. The fingers flexed, forming a fist. A hand was in his throat. Grasping. Creeping. Fighting.
Sam wheezed, his eyes squeezing shut. He couldn't pull in oxygen. Something, or someone, was in his throat, cutting off his air supply.
"Easy, Sammy." He found himself turned onto his side, still gasping for air.
"Mare…is still…here…" Using the last of his energy, Sam panted the words out.
"Bobby!" Dean's voice boomed from above him.
Alarm colored that one syllable and with it Sam lost any semblance of restraint. His head began to thrash tiredly, his throat working convulsively to rid itself of its visitor.
A sharp jab to his inner arm had Sam sliding toward oblivion.
Sam gave in, unable to take any more.
Dean found himself pacing around the small room, his brother sleeping the sleep of the well drugged courtesy of Bobby's Demerol shot.
Bobby had confided after he delivered the shot that he was afraid the narcotic pain medication would compromise Sam's respiratory system. Of course Sam flailing around, making those obscene choking noises, had set off Dean's panic button and he would have grasped at anything to ease Sam's distress.
Fortunately the medication had sent Sam off to la-la land, his breathing returned to normal once he dropped off. No ill effects, just lots of questions.
Was Sammy okay? Or had Mare succeeded in destroying his brother's mind? Sam had done nothing to dispel Dean's worries with his fish-out-of-water routine.
For one sick, crazy moment, Dean had thought the dream demon was still in his brother. But he'd witnessed its annihilation with his own two eyes. Sam just needed time.
Perching on the side of the mattress, Dean touched the back of his hand to his brother's forehead. No fever.
Sam might need time but Dean needed to know that Sam was still with him. That his little brother hadn't lost his marbles. "Sam, can you hear me?"
His brother's pale brow wrinkled, his eyes twitching behind firmly closed lids. Touching Sam's uninjured shoulder, Dean squeezed lightly. "Come on, Sam, wakey, wakey."
Bloodshot eyes ringed with dark circles blinked owlishly at Dean. "Just ten more minutes."
Tipping his head back and closing his eyes briefly, Dean exhaled pure relief. Sam's response might not make much sense to someone else, but Dean knew it meant his brother was back among the living. And the sane. Just ten more minutes whispered by Sam was the usual plea upon Dean's request to wakey wakey. Ever since Sam had hit those sleep seeking teen years, it had been his usual response. Dean hadn't heard it since before the big argument that sent Sam off into the night and to Stanford and until now hadn't even realized how much he'd missed it.
With that inner sense he had when it came to his brother, Dean knew Sam was okay.
Sam was finally ready to wake and Dean was thankful. It was hard to have his brother lying there so limp after everything they'd been through the last few days.
"D-Dean?" Sam slowly sat up on the mattresses that he had been stretched across.
"Right here, little brother." Dean had taken up a spot against the wall and was reading the most recent copy of Popular Mechanics.
Sam rubbed at his eyes and then at his throat. "Feels like I swallowed rocks."
"I bet, why don't we head for the kitchen. You could use something to drink and some pain meds for that sore throat." Dean rose from his spot on the floor. His limbs were stiff from being on the floor so long.
He held a hand out for his little brother, and helped Sam get up off the floor. Sam swayed a bit but soon was steady enough to walk out of the room.
As they entered the kitchen they were greeted by the sight of Bobby at the kitchen table with every color Sharpie marker available. Dean didn't know they made so many colors.
Puzzled, Dean had to ask the obvious. "What are those for Bobby?"
Bobby huffed. "Thought I'd do some coloring."
Sam laughed at that, and it warmed Dean's heart to see his brother smile. He could tell his little brother had the answer to Bobby's Sharpie mystery.
Sam pointed to the open book in front of Bobby. "He's going to ward off any dream demons that might decide to pop in."
"Yep, those things are nasty and I don't want to ever deal with one in my home again." Bobby gave Sam a sympathetic look. "How ya, feeling kid?"
Sam swallowed hard and his hand shot to his neck. "Bit sore."
Dean patted Sam on the shoulder. "I'll get you some water and some Tylenol."
Bobby grabbed Dean's arm as he walked by. "Got some Popsicles in the freezer, might feel good on Sam's throat."
Dean snickered. "Popsicles?"
"Not a damn word boy! A man can like Popsicles, and if I remember right, banana's your favorite right Dean?"
Dean instantly got excited. "Banana really? That's so awesome."
A rough voice caught Dean's attention. "Yeah, sounds good."
"Shit Sammy, I'll get you one right now." Dean made a beeline for the fridge and pulled out three frozen treats from the freezer. He quickly passed them out and as he lovingly sucked on his Popsicle he grabbed a bottle of water and some Tylenol for Sam.
Sam gave Dean a grateful smile as the water and Tylenol was set in front of him.
Dean then plopped down at the table and began to slurp happily on his frozen delight.
A kick to his leg, brought him back to the present. "Dean, you're making happy noises like Homer on the Simpsons. It's distracting."
Sam was happy to be rid of the dream demon, he was even starting to feel himself again. Other than his tailbone throbbing and his other injuries making themselves known, he felt pretty good. He definitely felt lighter.
It was such a relief to know that his dreams were caused by the demon and not visions from his loved ones. He would always feel some guilt for what happened to Mom, Jess and Madison, but he hoped that in time he could work past most of it.
He was pulled from his musings by Dean.
"So Bobby, maybe we should use some of those Sharpies on Sammy. Keep the demons away." Dean was smirking but Sam could see the concern in his brother's eyes.
Sam sighed. "Yeah, well I'd do it if it meant I wouldn't be targeted again. In fact, I've been meaning to ask. Bobby do you have any idea why this thing targeted me?"
It was Bobby's turn to sigh. "Yeah, but ya aint gonna like it."
Dean bristled. "What do you mean by that Bobby?"
"Simmer down kid. I just mean that a large reason this thing targeted Sam is because he's a Winchester."
Sam snapped to attention. "What?"
Bobby scratched his beard. "Your daddy was a good man, but his whole philosophy about keeping your mouth shut and moving on when it comes to emotional heavy issues is a load of crap. You keep that sort of stuff bottled up and it poisons you."
Dean seemed to calm at the elder hunters admission which shocked Sam considering how his brother looked up to their dad. "Yeah, we're not the caring and sharing type but what does that have to do with this demon latching onto Sammy?"
Sam shook his head. "Dean, I was carrying around so much guilt and grief over Madison's death, that I was a buffet for this demon. He latched onto me because I was emotionally crippled. That's what your getting at isn't it Bobby?"
"To put it bluntly, yes. My suggestion to you Sam, is that you need to take some time off to heal both physically and mentally. You boys can stay here, and Dean can help me out in the yard until you both are ready for the next hunt." Bobby gave Sam a reassuring smile.
Dean nodded. "Yeah, and in a month I can head over and take care of that werewolf. I think it's too early for you Sam. The loss of Madison is too fresh. I should have realized that before."
Sam started to speak in his own defense but Bobby beat him to it.
"You idgit. Dean, neither one of you are going after that werewolf. All that guilt that your carrying around for not protecting Sam from the demon and letting the kid take on a werewolf so soon, is gonna get you hurt. No, that hunt has already been taken up by Jefferson and one of his buddies. I called them yesterday morning. He said hi by the way."
Sam had to stifle a chuckle, after getting a glimpse of Dean. His brother looked like a scolded ten year old, and was sporting a pout.
"I could have taken the werewolf and been just fine, you know." Dean huffed out.
"Sure thing kid. But it's a mute point, cause I took care of it." Bobby snapped back.
Sam smiled. "Thanks Bobby."
"Don't thank me Sam, cause by the end of the week your gonna wish you'd gotten to leave. I have a ton of notes that need to be organized and parts that need to be pulled and shipped to a customer down south. In fact, if you'll excuse me, I need to make some calls about those parts." Bobby got up and left quickly before Sam or his brother could respond.
Dean laughed. "Old coot's got our number."
Sam smiled. "Dude not so loud, he'll get you for calling him that."
"True. So Sammy, you and I are quite a pair huh?" Dean ran his hand through his hair absentmindedly.
"Yeah. So who goes first? Because if we don't do some talking, I have a feeling Bobby will tan our hides." Sam could feel himself flush a bit in embarrassment. It was never easy to admit his feelings to Dean.
Dean was now nervously tapping his foot. "I guess I could go first. Bobby's right. I'm feeling a bit of guilt about this whole demon thing. I should have never let you hunt, I knew you were off. In the end you got hurt because of me."
Sam smiled. "Uh, I beg to differ dude. This dream demon attack was a new one for us. It's hard to know what to do with the unknown and I think you handled it pretty well. In fact if it weren't for you big brother spidey senses, I would have been able to hurt myself more severely or even had..."
"Don't go there. Jesus, that was a close one, finding you with the gun."
"Yeah, that's what I mean and beyond that, you helped me keep it together. Bobby said that most people didn't make it 24 hours, but I made it longer because of your support. As for the hunt, you can't blame yourself, I used my pouty little brother powers on you and you never can resist that." Sam giggled as Dean pointed a finger at him.
"Yep, that's dirty pool you played Sam. So, I've spilled, your turn little brother." Dean's facial expression softened, and he gave Sam a sympathetic smile.
"Well, where do I start? You know that I've been having trouble moving past Madison's death. It really hit so close to home. I wanted to save her not just because I cared for her but..."
Dean laid a hand on Sam's arm. "But because she reminded you of yourself. A victim of evil with no control. I get that. The difference is, you've been touched by evil but you still have control. Her control was lost the moment she was bitten."
"Do I Dean?" Sam could feel the moisture gathering in his eyes.
"Hell yeah you do. Dude, we've met other psychic children, and yeah some of them couldn't handle their powers but you and Andy give me hope. There is so much good inside, and I know you're gonna make it."
Sam swiped at a stray tear. "Yeah, okay. As long as I have you, I think I can."
Dean nodded. "As for Madison, she understood. I know that doesn't make it easy but she wanted the madness to end."
Sam nodded, and used his sleeve to clear the moisture on his face. "She did. God she was so composed Dean. I don't know if I could have been as brave as she was. She pulled me in for a hug with the gun wedged between us and then as she pulled away I shot..."
Sam could feel his body melt into sobbing.
Dean pulled Sam into a hug. He'd never pressed Sam for the details of Madison's death. There had always been hope that Sam would open up about it but he knew the Winchester code kept his little brother from sharing.
So Dean had decided to handle it like a Winchester himself, ignore it and it goes away right? But they were so wrong as Bobby pointed out. They had just opened themselves up for a supernatural attack.
It was okay though, it wasn't too late. They had saved Sammy and now, well now it was time to heal.
Dean continued to murmur words of comfort to his little brother until the sobbing stopped.
"Sammy, I promise everything is going to be okay. We're gonna take this week and heal just like Bobby said and when we leave, we'll be stronger and ready to face the evil out there together." Dean could feel Sam pulling away.
Sam took a calming breath and spoke. "Yeah, because we're stronger together. Nothing is going to break us as long as we're together."
Dean smiled. "Damn straight, little brother. Damn straight."
Sendintheclowns - A/N: It has been a blast writing fic with Gidgetgal again; this talented gal really keeps me on my toes which is definitely a good thing. A huge shout out to our marvelous beta, BlueEyedDemonLiz -- we couldn't have done this without her help. And then there's the birthday girl, Floralia -- next time we'll make sure Sam gets that cup of tea because everyone knows really cool people drink tea. And if you stuck with this story, which was only supposed to be half this size, thank you :)
Gidgetgal9- A/N: So I guess this is the end? I want to thank Sendintheclowns for working with me again, it's always a joy to have her around to write with. We were very lucky to have BlueEyedDemonLiz around to beta for us, she's the best. As for the birthday girl, I hope this hit all the right notes for you, and I, like my partner in crime, promise tea drinking next time! :0) Finally, I'd like to thank our readers for reading our little story that ran a lot longer than anticipated. We loved reading everyones comments. :0)
BTW, on another note. Be sure to check out the stories that will be coming out this summer during the Sam Summer of Love Challenge at Live Journal. The link is located in my profile. Also, I have started a sequel to the Charmed/SPN crossover- Witches, Demons and Hunters- Oh My with my co-author and it's coming along nicely. It's called Second Chances. I'm still working on the sequel to Hearts Desire- Kira's Revenge but now that Dream Weaver is done hopefully I can focus on it more. :0)