|Reviews for All Grace Abounds|
| Poppyflake chapter 7 . 3/29/2007
Loved it - thanks for posting.
| SophieSaulie chapter 7 . 3/29/2007
LOVELY CONCLUSION to a very lovely and moving story. I LOVED that you included Mary and her faith in the story. The mention of it was so brief in Houses of the Holy, but so revealing and it was so appropriate that there as in your story, it's Dean who relates that faith because Sam was too young or not born. I LOVED IT! You did a great job of turning this story into a very uplifting one.
As always, my fav. parts:
“Dean, you had pneumonia. Were in the hospital three days,” Sam pointed out, shaking his head. ‘Leave it up to Dean to forget such details.’ Putting his focus back on his brother’s current hurts, Sam wound the bandage around Dean’s palm. But the memories weren’t so readily banished. Sharply he recalled the weight that had settled on his ten year old shoulders, the terrifying worry that he would fail in his duty to protect Dean, to take care of him as well as Dean had always taken care of him. Remembered waking up in the middle of the night, sprinting from his bedroom, practically running to his brother’s room, needing to hear the still marginally strenuous breathes of his brother, to touch Dean’s forehead to ensure that his fever hadn’t climbed, to reassure himself that Dean hadn’t slipped away from him, hadn’t gone somewhere he couldn’t follow. - LOVE this memory. Sounds like Dean.
“Well, you only look a little worse for the wear. Your brother was really worried about you,” Ethan supplied, unaware that his words caused Sam’s own cheeks to go pink, made the younger man gladly bend over and retrieve the bandage from the floor because it offered him a momentary reprieve from his brother’s eye contact. Sam didn’t have to look at his brother to know Dean would be wearing a cocky smile.
“I appreciate that you gave him a lift to the hospital. I was glad he was there,” Dean sincerely admitted, his eyes straying from Ethan’s to land on Sam’s stunned but pleased expression. - I LOVED Dean's courtesy and gratitude for both of them here.
Sam fought hard to keep the smile from his lips at his brother’s worried expression. “Well I…I crawled into the bed with you…” At Dean’s horrified look, Sam’s laughter broke free, ruining his deception. He was laughing so hard he could barely choke out the rest of his joke, “Yeah I put your head on my shoulders.”
“Ah shut up!” Dean ordered, chuckling, as he turned his back on Sam and walked toward the table. But to his surprise, the bandage on his right hand inexplicably tightened. Turning, Dean tracked the bandage from his hand across the distance that stretched out between himself and his still laughing brother. - CUTE and FUNNY moment between brothers!
“Hey, I don’t need any thank you gifts, Kyle,” Dean gently protested, as the boy held out the box to him.
“It’s not really a thank you gift it’s more …” Shooting an uncomfortable look from Dean to Sam and back to Dean, Kyle swallowed down his fear. “Well, I just wanted to give this to you…so you’d…you know, remember me.”
Blindsided by the boy’s desire to connect with him, to be remembered by him, Dean had to clear his suddenly thick throat before he could vow, “I won’t forget you, Kyle.”
“I really want you to have this. My grandfather gave it to me,” Kyle persisted, still offering the box to Dean.
“No, really, Kyle. If it was from your grandfather…” Dean contested, raising his hands but the boy’s unflappable words overrode his own.
“My Dad said I could give it to you and I want to, Dean.” His eyes fleetingly skipping to Sam, Kyle again focused on Dean, knew that he couldn’t say all he wanted to in the presence of Dean’s brother but wanted to say something, to convey that he kept his promises too. “Dad and I talked last night…about a lot of things and it went OK, better than I ever thought it would.”
Dean understood what the boy was saying, what he didn’t want to spell out with Sam in the room. The pact they had made, Kyle was upholding it, was letting his father really get to know him. “That’s good and I’m…” Dean wanted to let Kyle know he hadn’t forgotten his own pledge but it was hard with Sam there, watching him, hanging on his every word. Settling on vagueness, Dean offered, “I’m trying to do my part too,” feeling a burning need to look at Sam but didn’t, couldn’t.
Easily reading the pride for him in Dean’s eyes, Kyle felt his desire to give the older man the gift burn even brighter in him. Looking down at the box in his hand, Kyle shyly revealed, “It’s nothing much really. But it always meant something to me.” Raising his eyes to meet Dean’s, the boy said with more conviction, “I think it’ll mean something to you. Please take it,” he entreated, holding the box out to Dean again.
With measured care, Dean reached out and took the small box from the boy. He opened the lid slowly, revealing an engraved brass bookmarker. Reaching inside, Dean picked up the bookmarker and tilted it in his palm so the etched words were discernible against the polished metal.
‘Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.’ –Matthew 11:28
- LOVE THIS SCENE!
“I’m sorry…it was a dumb thing to give you. You don’t have to take it..” Kyle stammered, fighting tears of frustration and embarrassment.
At the boy’s words, Dean shook his head and hoarsely said, “No.” Raising his head, he met Kyle’s fearful expression. “No, I ….I want to keep it.”
“But it….” Kyle didn’t know how to label the other man’s response to his gift.
Sam had no such problem. “It hurts you,” he breathed out, his voice cracking, his hold tightening on Dean’s arm.
Dean’s look settled back onto the bookmarker. Running his thumb reverently over the etched words, he nodded before meeting his brother’s eyes. “Yeah, but in a good way, Sam.” Turning to Kyle, Dean rallied himself to open up to the boy, to open up to Sam, to let someone know him, even some part of him that he had tucked away even from himself. Between the boy’s fearful expression and Sam’s anxious presence at his side, Dean found the strength to step free of his barriers.
-THIS ONE TOO! Sigh!
“Kyle, my mom…she had a handkerchief with this verse on it. She …she was going to give it to me when I…” Dean broke off, looked down again at the engraved words on the bookmaker as he scrambled to not let his voice shatter, to not let his soul splinter apart. It had been so long ago, another lifetime ago, felt as if it were someone else, someone else’s memories that he was recalling, someone else’s mother who had sat on another boy’s bed, an embroidered handkerchief in her hand.
Tears sprang to Sam’s eyes, not for the mother that he had never really known but for his brother, for Dean’s pain that always hurt Sam as if it were his own. Forgetting that Kyle even existed, Sam gave Dean’s arm a reassuring squeeze, felt as if a spear pierced his heart when Dean’s pain hued eyes met his.
“She never got the chance,” Dean forced out the words, surprised that they came out merely a breath of air, barely any strength to them, any volume. By Sam’s flinch, he knew they had reached his brother’s ears, had sailed straight into Sam’s ever vulnerable heart. Ashamed that he had hurt Sam, Dean turned to Kyle, smiled an emotional smile, “You’ve given me something I’ve been looking for Kyle. Thank you,” and then Dean stepped forward and gently pulled the boy into a hug, felt the small arms tighten around him before he pulled back. “I won’t forget you, kiddo. Now we’ve got to hit the road but I want your word that you’ll take care of yourself.”
“I will, Dean,” Kyle promised. “And you take care of yourself too.”
- SOB! SO TOUCHING!
Meeting Sam’s inquiring look, Dean revealed, “Mom’s parents died in a car accident when she was twelve. That’s why mom was raised by her aunt and uncle.”
“I knew they died but I never knew how they died,” Sam stated, without accusation.
- I LOVED this little inside story. We know so little about Mary.
“I asked her if she missed her parents, if she was sad they had gone. And she told me the truth,” Dean quietly explained, turning back to face Sam. “She was packing away her parents things when she found the handkerchief and it…” He swallowed, cleared his throat. “She said she read the verse and she didn’t feel alone anymore, understood that although bad things happened in life, God still loved her, that He would help her to be happy again, even though her parents were gone.”
And Dean remembered the way his mother had smiled then, a smile that lit up the room, ‘And you know what? God did it. I was happy again when I met your father, and then He blessed me with you and then with little Sammy. He kept His promise, Dean. He made things better when I didn’t think they ever would be again.’
- THIS WAS SO WONDERFUL! I JUST CRIED!
If anyone was weary, was burdened, Dean was. If anyone deserved rest, had earned a respite against the harshness of life, was worthy of shelter, Sam knew it was his brother, above anyone else he had ever known. “Dean…” he said brokenly, looking up at his brother, a tear slipping down his cheek, finding Dean’s eyes were swimming too. - SOB!
“Like you taught me to,” Sam correlated, his tone soft, gentle and his eyes drawn to Dean, felt reassured, strengthened as he met Dean’s tender green gaze.
“Yeah,” Dean agreed, surprised and touched that Sam remembered that he had taught him that and not their father.
A moment laterSam tentatively called, “ Dean,” shooting a look to Dean, rewarded with his brother’s full attention.
“You know you asked…..wanted to know about …how it was…with you in the hospital…” Sam struggled to get the words out, to bravely revisit those terrifying hours when Dean was slipping away from him, was going where he couldn’t follow. But Sam knew that whatever his admission would cost his pride, would exact on his heart, it would be a small price to pay.
“Sam, don’t,” Dean warned, recognizing the intensity in his brother’s eyes, knew that this time Sam would tell the truth, would rip open his soul, would make himself vulnerable, for him, because he cared for him. - GREAT!
But Sam refused to be swayed. For once the truth would not hurt but heal, would not condemn, but save, would irrefutably proclaim that he loved Dean, needed him, not just as his protector but as his brother, as the other half of his soul. “I might have held your hand for awhile…” Sam shot Dean a look full of pain and embarrassment and love, “I might have blubbered…for a little while.”
“Please tell me there was some hot nurse you wanted to impress with your sensitive side? You know, show that you cared about your brother so you didn’t come off as a jerk,” Dean retorted, but his tone was too low, too unsteady to effectively conceal the fact that Sam’s words had made his eyes tear up, had sent a pang through his heart.
| gaelicspirit chapter 7 . 3/29/2007
Cheryl, this was fantastic. And I know it must have been hard for you to write and post, looking to strike just the right balance between the boys as fans see them, and the message you were looking to weave through your words. How to do that and not be preachy, right? Well, I think you did a wonderful job.
I loved the memory of Dean's illness and Sam taking care of him because Dad said so. I LOVED the Star Wars quote. Made me grin immediately - Empire has always been my favorite of the series.
And I think you did a great job finding a way for Dean to have a memory of Mom, a memory based in faith - her faith. We know she believed in angles, and your further take on it really resonated for me. You're right - if there is anyone in need of rest (physically, emotionally, and soulfully) it's Dean.
Thank you for putting yourself out there like this, for writing what is in your heart, and for keeping it angsty and entertaining for this fandom. That balance is truly a gift.
| NovemberSGA chapter 6 . 3/28/2007
Oh. Now I have goosebumps all over! I really like where you have all of the signs pointing and Dean's realization dawning slowly but surely...
Very well done. Dean's figuring it out and still being Dean.
| alwaysateen chapter 7 . 3/28/2007
Great last chapter. It was good to see once more the connection between Dean and Kyle. And the memories about their mom was a nice touch also. Great job.
| Ani-maniac494 chapter 7 . 3/28/2007
As always, I LOVED how you ended this. :)
You captured Dean and Sam so well, and the way Sam acts when Dean is hurt. I almost think part of why Dean jokes so much is because he doesn't want Sam to worry, and arguing with him or joking gives him something else to think about. I laughed at his, "say 'brother'," comment, lol!
"So what if the kid’s parents could put Dean next in line for a lethal injection, why worry about something so trivial as that?"
And Sam believes that he doesn't know how Dean thinks, lol. ;) He would probably tell Sam the same thing.
"“You look strong enough to pull the ears off a Gundark,” Dean quoted as he approached, instantly generating a surprised, glowing smile from the boy.
“You’re a Star Wars fan?” Kyle asked incredulously, awed anew at just how cool Dean Winchester was."
*falls over laughing* I love it! *grin* I'm a Star Wars fan, so that made me crack up, lol! Can't you just picture Dean as Han Solo? ;)
"“You’re out there rescuing small children, hugging cops and district attorneys, making the world a better place, one snow storm at a time.”"
*falls over laughing again* Lol, yep, that's Dean.
"‘Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.’ –Matthew 11:28"
The Lord did give you a perfect verse! That fits Dean so perfectly, and is such a beautiful and comforting verse as well.
"We do not always seek God but He always seeks us, always loves us."
Amen. :) Perfectly put!
Is there any chance you'd think about writing a sequel? I'd love to see what Sam and Dean would do after what happened, and I'd love to see more of Kyle. But no matter what, I have loved every second of this story! Your stories are always so hopeful, and you are such an amazing writer.
God has blessed you with incredible talent!
I look forward to seeing what you write next! :)
| Halcyon Impulsion chapter 7 . 3/28/2007
I cried :) I personally prefer the language of the KJV of the passage you used, but either way it is lovely and I really enjoyed the part with Mary. Especially "Hey God, its Dean” and the reasoning behind it :) how fun!
| SupernaturalGeek chapter 7 . 3/28/2007
Wow. I didn't think this could get any better but you excelled yourself with this ending. When Dean got the bookmark and was explaining about Mary's hankerchief, I actually teared up and I don't do that. (Last time it happened was the car scene at the end of CSPWDT. Must be something about those boys being emotional that gets to me!) You wrote it so, so well and kept them completely in character while still clearly showing their love for each other. Adored Sam explaining to Dean how he'd been when he was in hospital and laughed at the humour you still managed to slip in there. Fantastic story - I really loved it :)
| Halcyon Impulsion chapter 6 . 3/28/2007
Nicely done chapter. Looking forward to the wrap-up!
| I'mcalledZorro chapter 7 . 3/28/2007
I really enjoyed reading this story! That verse worked so well, espically with Dean! This story does truly glorify God, great job.
| Halcyon Impulsion chapter 5 . 3/28/2007
LOL - the cop hugs him :) Poor Dean - duh, he was SEVEN! I want Dean to settle down and be happy of course :)
| Halcyon Impulsion chapter 4 . 3/28/2007
Heehee - Mr. Rogers quip made me laugh :) Lots of banter in this one!
| lookaway618 chapter 7 . 3/28/2007
You know I always love your work. I also love the verse you used. I know I definitely need that reminder so it's perfect for the boys...I think it's time they do another faith episode. ;o)
| Karma22 chapter 7 . 3/28/2007
My personal favorite when i was a little girl was Now i lay me down to sleep... I really liked the new chapter. You did really well with it. hope to hear more from you soon!
| Halcyon Impulsion chapter 3 . 3/28/2007
Totally has a point in not believing Dean is hurt - the guy'd be "fine" if his leg got hacked off, y'know? Love the "steal" the car line :)