Author: Disasteriffic Kaz
Info: Fallout from Sam's truthful revelation at the end of 9x13 "The Purge" spoilers for the episode. An angsty/comfort fix for the scene that just broke my heart.
Author's Note: I don't normally do episode tags like this. In fact I think I've only done one either but this tonight… well, I know I'm not the only one who needs to fix this until they do. LOL It hurt. Hopefully this will heal a little of that in the meantime.
This story is unbeta'd. All mistakes are my own.
**Follow me on Facebook as "Disasteriffic Kaz" for frequent fic updates or just to chat!
~Reviews are Love~
"You want me to leave?" Dean called to his brother's retreating back as he poured himself another shot of whiskey. "Maybe I should. See what Cas is doin'."
"What?" Sam came back into the kitchen to stare at his brother. He watched Dean knock back his drink and pour another and his nerves twitched. It'd been a long time since he'd seen Dean drink like that. "Why would you leave and call Cas?"
"Got work to do. Gotta fix my mess, Sam. Gadreel. Crowley." Dean shrugged and poured more whiskey into his glass.
"Well that's a great way to start," Sam said as Dean emptied the glass again. "You planning on drinking them to death?"
"Don't start with me." Dean glared up at him and stood. He picked up the bottle to pour another shot and then slammed it down on the table as the hurt from Sam's words continued to work through him. 'No. I wouldn't.' Dean swallowed against the lump in his throat and would have sworn he could feel his heart stutter. He took hold of his anger instead and sent a hurtful smile to his brother. "Can't trust you to have my back, Sam. You already told me my life ain't worth shit to you anymore." Dean's voice choked out of his throat like it was dragged over gravel and he had to look away from the sudden look of anguish on his little brother's face.
"Dean!" Sam shook off the shock that had held him still with Dean's words and he grabbed his brother. Frustration roared through him that somehow Dean seemed to be unable to understand what Sam had been trying to tell him. He shoved Dean back to the wall and pinned his shoulders there with his hands in an iron grip. "You idiot! I never said I don't care. You think there is anything I wouldn't do… ANY thing… to save your life? I'd give my own in a heartbeat if it meant keeping you alive! What I won't do is make any more deals! Fuck!" Sam shouted and stalked away from his brother before he hurt him. "If you die then you're in Heaven because they…" Sam turned back and jabbed a finger at Dean. "… they PROMISED us. We die, we go up. We earned it! If you die, you think I'd drag you out of your Heaven and back down here to this… this misery? The pain and the blood and the fear and the… just to keep you with me? You really think I could do something like that to you? God, Dean." All the strength fled Sam's limbs and he dropped to his knees. "You're my brother. I love you. I couldn't… I would never do that to you. Never. I'm sorry." Sam bowed his head as his eyes filled. "You die and I deserve it. I deserve to be alone."
Dean looked down at Sam's bowed head and it was like a light went off. He finally got it. He didn't damn well like it but he understood. "Purgatory," he whispered. "You didn't look for me… 'cause you thought I was dead and… at peace." Sam's head gave a minute twitch of a nod and Dean slid down the wall until he was sitting with his knee bumping his brother's shoulder. Dean stared at him and let it sink in; what Sam had really been trying to tell him… that he loved Dean so much he'd spend the rest of his life alone rather than take a peaceful afterlife away from his big brother and Dean frowned because he realized it was more than that. Sam didn't think he deserved to have Dean at all if he couldn't keep him alive. That's what his little brother was saying. The familiar anger seethed up through Dean at that, wanting to beat Sam's thick skull against a wall because how could he possibly think he was undeserving of anything? Dean gave a pained smile; that was his job after all… not believing he was worthy of any happiness or even of a future that didn't end bloody and screaming.
"Christ, we are one screwed up couple'a kids, Sammy," Dean said finally. Sam's breath hitched and the tears fell and Dean put the anger away. He reached out and grabbed Sam's shoulder. "Come on. Come're." Dean pulled him in and wrapped both arms around his little brother when he collapsed against his chest with his head under his chin. The magnitude of what he'd done by tricking Sam into letting Gadreel possess him was just beginning to sink in. Every time Sam had said he was ready to die and Dean had balked at the mere thought, what Sam had really been saying was he was ready to be at peace. Dean had stolen it from him. "I'm sorry, Sammy. I'm… shit." Dean held him tighter while Sam's shoulders shook and felt his own eyes well up as Sam's fist clenched in his shirt. "You're right. I am… I am so damn scared of being left alone. Takin' care of you's all I've ever had." Dean felt Sam tense and gave him a shake. "It's all I ever wanted too so shut the hell up before you piss me off and end this chick flick." He heard Sam give a wet snort of laughter and smiled while his own tears fell. "I know it pisses you off and maybe… maybe it even scares you a little but you gotta understand. Little brother, you've been the only bright spot in my life since I was four years old. Mom died. Dad, Bobby, Joe and Ellen, hell even Rufus and you…" Dean's voice choked off and he shook his head while Sam's fist tightened in his shirt. "I've tried to live without you, Sammy. I… I tried and I never did figure out how to be happy. I went through the motions and I buried myself in a bottle of liquor so I could pretend but it wasn't a life. It was a damn lie. Every second of it was just me countin' the minutes until I couldn't take it anymore. I don't know what to do if you're not here so yeah, I make some damn stupid decisions when you're not around to keep me honest."
Sam sniffed and loosened the grip he didn't realize he had on his brother's shirt. He pushed up, letting Dean's arms slide around him until he was sitting beside him with one arm still over his shoulders. "We can't keep doing it, Dean. I understand. I do. Even with Amelia, it was… it was good but it wasn't perfect. There was always this hole in my chest where you should've been and some days… God, Dean there were days I couldn't breathe." He let Dean tighten his hold and pull him closer. "But it has to stop. Mom made a deal with Azazel to save Dad. Dad dealed for you. You made a deal to save me. I made a deal to save you! And none of it's ever come out right in the end! We almost ended the whole world! People we love die until there's no one left standing but us and I can't take it anymore, Dean! I can't!"
"Ok. Ok. Take a breath," Dean soothed and pulled Sam in again, getting both arms around him when his brother's voice had risen to near-frantic once more. Sam was right. Every damn member of their family had an attack of deal-making stupid when someone they loved died and it had to stop somewhere. "You're right." Dean felt some of the tension in Sam's shoulders ease but kept his hold of him. "Sammy, I…" Dean blew out a breath and looked up for a moment. "I can't promise you I won't ever do something stupid to save you again. I can't but I… if I fail… if you die on me and… I'll let it go. I will, so long as I know you're up there. Now, you get tossed downstairs again for some reason and you better know that I will raise Hell and crash Heaven to get you out because you don't deserve one more second of that suffering."
Sam nodded. The truth was, though he'd told Dean he wouldn't try to bring him back if he died he'd lied. The same was true for him; if Dean was at peace, Sam would force himself to let go but if he knew his brother was suffering, Sam wasn't sure there was any line he wouldn't cross to save him. It terrified him but it was the way it was. "Alright. I can live with that."
"I'm sorry I stopped you leaving," Dean whispered and rested his chin on the top of Sam's head in his hair. "But I'm not sorry you're still here with me."
Sam gave a watery laugh and nodded. He listened to Dean's heart beating under his ear for a few minutes and then smiled. "You're uh… you're rep as a bad-ass is taking a hit here, you realize. We're cuddling."
"Shuddup." Dean growled and pushed Sam up off his chest. He kept his arm over his shoulders though and looked at him seriously. "Sammy… we alright?"
Sam looked into his big brother's eyes and saw every messed-up, broken part of them. It made him hurt and it made him smile. He nodded. "Yeah. We're alright. I'm still pissed at you. Gonna be for a while I think but that doesn't mean I don't want you around… that I don't care. I never meant for you to think I don't care, Dean."
"Alright. Alright. I know." Dean scrubbed his free hand over his face and looked around the kitchen, eyes landing on the whiskey bottle on the table and he shook his head. He looked over at Sam's tired, shadowed eyes and realized he wasn't the only one who hadn't been getting any sleep lately because of this. "Come on." Dean groaned and climbed back to his feet. He reached a hand down, smiling when Sam grasped it and pulled him up too. "Bed. You look like shit."
"Thanks." Sam shoved his hair out of his face and was relieved when Dean walked past the table without grabbing the whiskey bottle. It made him smile. It meant his big brother wasn't trying to drown himself anymore, at least not for now and Sam would take it. He followed him down the hall and stopped in the door to his room as Dean kept moving. "Dean?"
"Yeah." Dean turned at his own room and glanced back, raising a brow. "What? You want me to tuck you in, princess?"
Sam chuckled. He'd missed the teasing. "No. Just… thanks."
Dean frowned. "For what?"
"Listening?" Sam gave a sheepish smile. "Even after I said what I did. God, did that come out wrong."
"Forget it," Dean said easily, though he thought it would be a long time before either of them did. He walked back suddenly and gripped Sam's shoulders. "I need you to promise me something, Sammy." He waited for Sam's eyes to meet his and stared fiercely back. "You promise me that you aren't gonna try to die. I need to know that you're not gonna give up so that you can have that peace."
Sam's mouth fell open and for a moment, he wanted to yell angrily but it bled away quickly with the almost fearful quality to Dean's voice. He shook his head. "I wouldn't… God, Dean." Sam grabbed him impulsively and hugged his brother. "I wouldn't do that. Maybe once but… I promise. I'm here. I'm gonna fight to stay."
The air whooshed out of Dean's lungs and he nodded into his brother's shoulder before he stepped back and let him go. "Sorry, kiddo. I had to ask. Cas and that damn needle and… you get it, right?"
Sam nodded. "Yeah." He rubbed a hand over that spot on his neck and let it fall.
"Good." Dean stepped away with a last pat for his brother's shoulder and headed for his room. "Night, Sammy." He heard Sam's mumbled goodnight as he closed his door and then Dean stopped, leaned back against the door and slid down it to sit on the floor. He wrapped his arms around his legs and buried his face in his knees. "Please let us be alright," Dean whispered. He rubbed his hands over his face and made himself get up. He could still feel the whiskey burning through him and it made him sick that he'd done that to himself again. If he was going to ask that Sam try harder then it damn well had to start with him first. He pulled his flannel off and tossed it over the chair, looked at his bed and decided there was no way in hell he was getting any sleep just then. "Crap." He ran a hand over his face again and groaned. Dean pulled open his door and then stopped, staring when he saw Sam coming out of his room as well.
"Dean?" Sam frowned. "Thought you were going to bed?"
"Yeah. I uh… not as tired as I thought I was." Dean straightened his t-shirt and shrugged. "Was gonna get some coffee. You?"
Sam ducked his head and smiled. "Uh, yeah. Coffee, I mean. I can't, uh… can't sleep either."
Dean shook his head at them and walked over to his brother. "Ok. Come on. Coffee and a couple rounds of poker. We'll play for chores."
"No way." Sam said quickly as they walked back to the kitchen.
Dean grinned. "Too chicken to take me on?"
"You always kick my ass when we play for chores." Sam laughed softly and rolled his eyes. "Fine but trash is off the table."
"Deal." Dean walked into the kitchen. His eyes went to the whiskey bottle and glass.
Sam watched his brother pick up the bottle and glass, afraid for a moment that Dean was going to start again and then smiled when his brother took them to the sink and dropped them in with a clatter. "You wanna make coffee?"
"Yeah. Go find us some cards." Dean grabbed the empty coffee pot and started filling it.
Sam smiled and left him there. There was still a shadow of doubt in his brother's eyes but then, Sam was sure the same shadow still haunted his own eyes. He ducked into Dean's room and plucked a deck of cards from his desk and stopped to look at the picture that hung there; his father and Dean, holding him on the back of the Impala. Sam's eyes filled and he brushed irritably at them as he started back to the kitchen. Maybe they weren't alright yet, not completely, but they could try… he could try. He found Dean at the table with a pile of scrap paper writing various chores out on them and smiled as he held up the cards.
"Nice." Dean nodded and flipped a few of the papers across the table. He watched his brother sit and saw the shine of tears in Sam's eyes before he blinked them away. He considered poking and asking for just a moment but discarded the idea. For the first time in a while, the air between them wasn't broken glass trying to claw his heart out. He didn't want to tempt fate. "You deal, Sammy. And prepare to be schooled."
Sam smiled as he started shuffling. "Always am," he said softly and meant more than just poker.