Reviews for Within My Hands
pengwin-jibberish chapter 8 . 11/27/2006
I adored your story. It took me a litle while to realize it was finished due to the alerts being down but I'm very glad I got to read it down.

I liked the pacing and length of this story. It didn't drag but it had enough substance so that it didn't seem short either. I look forward to reading your future work.
sams1ra chapter 7 . 11/27/2006
"somewhere inside Dean he knew that it was never going to be over. Not for him. This was it for him. Survive to defeat evil and save innocence… save the innocence in everyone but him." so, so sad… I liked the stare-downs and the brotherly banter. I totally went aw at the parts about Dean's/Sam's innocence. The ending? Beautiful.
brighette chapter 8 . 11/27/2006
OK, I started reading last night and you have me finishing it up here at work! That's how caught up I was - I couldn't wait until tonight to find out what happened to our poor lost Dean. Loved it, great job. And I'm still okay with Brenna as a recurring character, but not a 3rd passenger - just FYI ;) Though it is your world and you make the rules!

Anyway, you do a great job letting Dean need help and being...broken...without him sacrificing what makes him Dean. That's a hard line to walk, and you rarely even lose your balance, so kudos! Adding you to my favorite author list...can't wait for the promised more to come!
mtee1958 chapter 8 . 11/27/2006
So that's Dean's home. This was a great story. I really love Brenna. I don't usually like original characters, but you have her just perfect. When she's with Dean - they are sweet and wonderful and it's sad when they have to leave each other - but it's just as well. She's his anchor when he needs it.

stealthyone chapter 6 . 11/27/2006
What I really liked about this chapter is its overarching theme about having faith in each other. Dean, Sam and Brenna all needed to believe in each other, and no matter how tough it got, they did so. Nice. :)

Other things I liked: Dean avoiding Brenna’s eyes at the beginning so she didn’t see into him, because yeah, Dean isn’t much for sharing his inner feelings with people; Dean worrying about Sam even when he’s hurt, because that’s just what big brothers do; Dean taking comfort in the moment from “Shadows,” which really was a great moment, not only because Dean got to hug John, but because Sam and John clicked for the first time in years; and Dean testing Sam to make sure Sam isn’t a trick, which was just a very well-written segment full of good tension.

Favorite lines:

Sam saw Brenna’s shoulders stiffen, and he slid his eyes askance to Joss, saying softly, “Hold on to something.”


His dark side shook her, and his light blinded her.

Beautifully written, such a great way of describing him and the way she reacts to him.

He blinked. She’d asked him to do that before. And if he recalled correctly, the end result was that he’d been taken and tortured by a banshee.

She narrowed her eyes, knowing where his thoughts were going. “So not my fault.”


He just hoped something would occur to him before it was too late.

“It’s too late now,” the deep voice whispered through his head and again in a blink, the witch was in front of him, her hands reaching for his throat.

Creepy little moment here.

almost instinctively Dean wrenched his arm from Sam’s grasp. Sam blinked at that. This Dean wasn’t bruised and broken. This Dean wasn’t weak from fever. This Dean…

“Sam! What the hell are you doing here?”

… was pissed.

*g* Yeah, Dean doesn’t want Sam’s life in jeopardy, too, if he can help it.

“Wait, this is her isn’t it?”

“What? No, Dean, it’s me.”

I just ache for Dean here, thinking that Sam’s just another trick.

“When I was five you taught me how to ride a bike and I almost –“

“Got hit by a truck, yeah, yeah, we’ve done this one already.”

Dean’s voice was hard. He’d heard this tone before, but never directed at him.

I really like this, how strange and alien it feels to Sam to have Dean treat him this way. Nice tension here.

“I got you,” Sam panted.

“You bet your ass you do,”

Aww, boys. :)

“If she’s gonna be bound to anyone this time around, it’s not going to be you,” Sam said through clenched teeth.

M. Protective, defiant Sam. So sexy. *tackles him*
sams1ra chapter 6 . 11/27/2006
"If his father or brother were ever taken from him, Dean’s fight with the darkness inside of him would be epic." Do I see a hint for a new story? Cuz I, for one, wouldn’t mind… Is she really gone? Well, 2 more chapters, I guess it ain't over yet… good update!
Tacpebs chapter 8 . 11/27/2006
I'm sorry you've finished the story, but it was a good ending! Thanks for the great read!
Tacpebs chapter 7 . 11/26/2006
Poor Dean. Poor Sammy. Where exactly is home for Dean? That's so sad. T_T
mcatB chapter 8 . 11/26/2006
Excellent story! And I really enjoyed the fact that you included Brenna - I liked her. I'm already looking forward to your next story.
EagleGirl6 chapter 6 . 11/26/2006
Ahh, the brotherly love, it's wonderful! Who wouldn't love a protective Sam taking care of big brother. And you do it so well. Your description at the beginning of Dean's head motions and his instinctual searching for Sam was so clear, I could be watching this on TV:

Once he saw that Sam was sitting next to him, he allowed himself a small moment to breathe...

Ooh, man I love Brenna! Love that she's there to watch out for our boys, whatever needs to be done. This was awesome:

Sam knew from the expression on Paul’s face that Brenna’s eyes had turned predatory. He glanced briefly at Dean and saw the shadow of his brother’s usual cocky grin turning up his mouth. He looked like he was…proud of her.

Have I mentioned that the character of Joss is really intriguing? He's caught between his family and the Winchesters, but manages to balance it to the end. And I wonder what Brenna *saw* in Beth. I love these lines:

“You gonna try to kill him?” “No,” Joss answered, horrified by the thought. “You can stay,” Sam answered.

Such a great description of Dean's recognition of Sam, I so smiled at this:

Sam never doubted them. Never doubted him.

Wow, Brenna changing Dean's bandages and talking about the nightmare witch lore. You did a great job sneaking some exposition in there with the h/c we all love. How much did I want to be Brenna there...

Your description of how Dean finally let Brenna *see* him was great. I loved this line:

"What she saw, the Dean she saw, was both brighter and darker than she could have thought... If his father or brother were ever taken from him, Dean’s fight with the darkness inside of him would be epic."

Hehehe, this was cute, nice job keeping the lighter parts mixed in with all the angst:

And if he recalled correctly, the end result was that he’d been taken and tortured by a banshee... “So not my fault.”

What a great moment for the happy place; that's one of my favorite scenes from season 1. Good choice! And how creepy is this witch, with her blue eyes and child-like voice. Yikes:

“Clever hunter,” she pouted. “Why won’t you play with me?”

“Not this time, hunter,” she cried out, a demented, angry child’s voice.

What a wonderful visual, I love how you have them all connected to protect Dean and defeat the enemy. This was just awesome:

Seeing Dean lay with Brenna on one side, a hand on his face, Sam on the other, a hand on his hand, and Brenna and Sam’s hands clasped across his body, he realized he’d never seen anyone more connected to life as this man who was close to death.

Yay! Sam's in Dean's nightmare with him, the brothers're gonna lay some smack-down on that Freddy Kruger-wannabe witch!:

This Dean wasn’t bruised and broken. This Dean wasn’t weak from fever. This Dean… was pissed.

“You will beg me for death before this is over,” his voice was low and carried with it an undertone that Sam had never heard from his brother before.

All the action between Dean and the witch is totally well written, I can see it happening, especially when Dean is using his knife while they're in the circle. Well Done! And this line sums up the whole thing:

Once he’d believed that it was really Sam there with him, he never doubted that he could defeat her. Without Sam, he was alone in the dark. With him, he was powerful.

Wonderful chapter, really. Your dialogue, descriptions of both the action sequences and in between, all vividly described. Just one question. Are Dean and Brenna gonna have any time *alone*? Please? Poor kids got interrupted in your last story!

Thanks for the chapter, sorry it took me so long to review:)
shywalk chapter 8 . 11/26/2006
Even though FF has been a ... I got to read this..wonderful end to a great of my favs
holychocolatestarfish chapter 8 . 11/26/2006
Ah. A beautiful ending. I love the song too. And I can't wait to see what you come up with next. I love your writing!
Allegra chapter 8 . 11/26/2006
Great stuff! I'm glad I didn't have to wait long for that last part. Your plans for another story sound fantastic. I shall be waiting with baited breath!
stealthyone chapter 5 . 11/26/2006
How much do I love Sam’s soothing manner around and fierce protectiveness of Dean? So much. *squishes Sam*

Poor Dean, suffering physically and mentally, especially mentally, with those horrible nightmares of seeing his family die. I’m so glad he seems to be a bit more with it by chapter’s end.

One thing that I really liked about this chapter is the revelation that Dean thought he was going to die when he first faced the witch, and that he’d planned to take the witch with him. Great little twist to the story, and oh so painful for Sam to hear. Nicely done.

Favorite lines:

It wasn’t that she loved him – it wasn’t that she didn’t love him, either.

I really like how you phrased that, how you described her feelings for him.

What kind of life did she lead, she wondered, where she could pack a bag and take off leaving only a note, having no idea when she’d return?

“Exactly the kind I like,” she muttered as she watched the dust fly in her rear-view mirror.

*g* Those two paragraphs perfectly sum up her character, I think.

“Seriously, man,” Sam spat at him, his eyes hard. “All Dean has done is sacrifice for your family… for our family.” He looked back at his brother as Dean’s head tossed once to the side, then back again toward Sam. “I don’t think it’s too much to ask to… to just goddamn believe in him.”

I love Sam’s dialogue here, the anger that edges his words and his need for people to just believe that Dean will beat this.

“Dean, hey, take it easy. You’re safe. I won’t let anything hurt you,” Sam almost winced at that promise.

I really like this, from Sam’s soothing words to his worry that he can’t keep that promise.

“I never really thought about what leaving for Stanford would mean for you, man. I just wanted to get away… from hunting, from Dad, from that life. I never wanted to leave you.”

Aww, Sam. *hugs him*

“Quit looking at me like that, Sam,” Dean muttered.

“Like what?”

“Like I’m gonna disappear.”

Poor Sam, he’s just so darned worried.

“Too dark, Sam,” he said, his voice low and frantic. “Turn on the lights.”

“The lights are on, Dean,” Sam whispered back, trying for soothing but hitting somewhere around not-panicked.

Great job capturing Dean’s fear and panic and Sam’s worry. Oh, *boys.*

Then he heard her laugh. It sounded like something slithering through dried leaves.

Great description.

How could he tell him that he’d called Dad and that he’d told Dad it was a nightmare witch, but that Dad hadn’t believed him? Not only not believed him but had hung up on him.

Bad John! *smacks John*

“Sam,” the name fell from his lips like a plea. Not him, please, not him. I can’t… not without Sam…

Oh, *Dean.* He really would be utterly lost without Sam.

“No one is touching him,” Sam stated.

I *love* Sam being all fiercely protective.

“You cut your hair.”

I love this last line of this chapter. Trust Dean to make such an observation in the middle of such a life-or-death situation.
LenJade chapter 8 . 11/26/2006
I really liked this story. The pacing is great, so are the discriptions. You spend an equal amount of time in the physical as well as the emotional details. Which is everything in a story like this. The only complaint I have is... Well, you say the boys are close and you discribe it, but it doesn't seem justified. If that makes sense. Brenna is a great character and I like her with Dean, but she highlights the selflessness of Dean and his fixation on his brother. Which would be a good thing, if she didn't focus on the darkness of that aspect of Dean.

Through her eyes, it is sad and unhealthy and not equally returned, Dean's devotion to his brother. Sam just is half-assed when it comes to supporting his brother. Dean never lets him in enough to allow Sam to be equally devoted. I always liked to picture the brother's relationship a part of the light in their lives. That Dean's selflessness and devotion feed the light qualities more than the darkness inside him.

In other words, I'm very glad you are thinking of doing a story that focuses on the brother's relationship and flashbacks of their childhood. Seeing how Sam equalizing their bond would be great. Maybe he can protect Dean and that lands him in trouble or something. Or we can see instances where Sam chooses Dean above anyone or anything else.

I know this is a problem because Sam left for school and essentially left Dean, but maybe he did that to protect him. Dean is hurt more offten than not protecting Sam, so if Sam were to leave, wouldn't he be safer? I always loved the last episode of season 1 where Sam chooses Dean over their father, trusts his brother wholeheartedly, because all the time growing him Dean was careful to rarely choose either Sam or Dad and kept them bridged, but put in the same position, Sam chose Dean, hands down.

Maybe things like that would be good to show how the two ground eachother, guard eachother. It's just so clear in your writing that Dean's got the short end of the stick from life, from his bastard father, from Sammy (who tries to be there for Dean, but always falls just a tad bit short). It's heartbreaking really, and he deserves something to stand strong and center in his heart. He can't even have Brenna, though he does have her she just can't be with him physically most of the time.

So... awsome story. Awsome writing. You're words really paint a picture that you can fall into. I am totally caught up in your Dean and hope for the best for him. I can't wait for more!This is totally great stuff... LOL...
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