The alarm went off at 8:00 am, as decided. They wanted to check out of this dump and her back on the road. They'd just helped an old contact finish off a nasty poltergeist in lower Manhattan, but Dean had already set his sights on a potential case a few hundred miles south. Just keep busy, the motto he Seemed to live by these days. For once Sam had just agreed without question.
While he had intended to let his little brother sleep in a few extra minutes, Dean went rigid when he turned to face the other bed. It was empty.
His eyes darted to the bathroom, but it too was vacant. Bolting out of bed, he pulled the curtains back. Maybe he took the car to go grab some coffee... No, the impala was still there.
Sam groaned, the sound of his name drawing him out of his dreams. He tried desperately to ignore Dean... to close his eyes and fall back asleep, but the overwhelming sensation that something was not right seemed to force his consciousness upon him. Sam couldn't understand why the air seemed to be so heavy. It engulfed him like a hot and humid blanket...
'Blanket...' thought Sam, as he realized he must have just pulled the covers over his head last night. Reaching up, his hands probed for the lip pf the cover, only to find more blanket.
The strangeness seemed to instantly wake him. He fumbled beneath the oddly heavy blanket as he frantically searched for a way out. The air seemed to get bubble with a moist heat as he desperately tried to escape the seemingly endless sea of blanket.
Standing there in his pajama pants, Dean felt a cold fear seep into his bloodstream. There was a tightness in his chest that made breathing shallow. Still, there was a chance he was just being Sam. Dean forced himself to keep a level head. Maybe the kid just went on one of his stupid runs. Or actually chatted up a girl for what was probably the fourth time in his life.
He raised his head sharply back towards the bed. If he hadn't been so quiet, it would have been easily missed. Dean narrowed his eyes, padding a few cautiosu steps closer. "...the hell?" He muttered, then lunged for the handgun under his pillow. He knew something had been fishy about this. Had a gut feeling from the get-go. Wearing an intense scowl, he grabbed the top of the bedding and yanked it aside. The moment his hand was free, it was back on his gun, which was already cocked and pointed at-
"What." Dean's face drained of any remaining color, his voice no better than a hoarse croak.
Blinding light and cold air attacked his senses as the blanket seeming dissipated from over top of him. As the world slowly came into focus, Sam heard a strangely lot, yet unmistakable voice.
All of the sudden the world came into focus, only to disorient Sam even more. Everything seemed out of proportion and distorted at strange angles.
"The fuck?" finished Sam, as he looked towards the source of the voice. His eyes grew wide as he stared up at the tremendous sight before him. A behemoth wall of flannel shot up at the edge of the bed, and farther up, wide green eyes staring down at him in disbelief.
Sam felt as if he stomach was filled with butterflies, no, more like fighter jets, flying erratically around his gut.
He could feel the electric grip of adrenaline as it seized his wrists and instinct took over. Sam scrambled backwards, gaining as much distance between him and... and ... and Dean?
Dean had seen a crapload of weird in his lifetime. Enough to drive most people clinically insane, yet he pulled through. But seeing a living, breathing doll version of his baby brother was a whole new level of freaky.
And here he was, scaring the daylights out of him. Dean lowered the gun immediately. He clicked the safety back on without looking as he set it on the shared nightstand.
"Talk about waking up on the wrong side of the bed.." he muttered the bad joke under his breath, hoping to at least annoy Sam into relaxing. "Sam. Hey, just..take it easy..." Dean stammered reassurance laced with warning. He was going to crawl right off the edge of the bed at this rate. Taking precautionary measures, he sat on the side of the bed, putting Sam back within arm's reach.
Dean voice seemed so out of place coming out of the titanic figure looming over him. As Dean moved closer, Sam instinctively flinched and moved backs, his eyes flickering back and forth between the edge of the bed and the mammoth Dean sitting in front of him. Deans attempt and comforting Sam only makes the fear inside of him boil and fester, twisting and churning like spoiled milk in his stomach.
He feels himself shaking, and worse yet, his breath come in short bursts. Everything he lays his eyes on adds to the sickening feeling that grows upon him. Sounds slips from his mouth, not words, but short stutters. While his heart beats erratically, threatening to pound its way out of his rib cage, Sam's mind tries furiously to string together whats happening, and as the realization dawns on him, it feels as if all his weight drops downwards.
Taking in a deep breath, Sam swallows at stares up at the statuesque figure planted on the bed.
"D-d-d-d" Sam clears his throat, "Dean?"
"Yeah," he said quietly. "Yeah it's just me, Sammy."
A deep frown had etched itself on Dean's face, his bewildered gaze unmoving. Sam was a brave kid, and he was literally trembling right now. It made his heart cringe a bit to know that HE was the one scaring him so bad. But, for Dean, the scariest part of the whole thing was that he didn't know what to do. He had absolutely no idea how to fix this.
They stared each other down. In another situation, this would have been hilarious. But right now, the chances of Sam just popping back to normal weren't hopeful- and as they were frequently reminded, their luck had never been good to begin with.
"Stop freaking out, I'm not going to eat you." Dean muttered after a minute. Didn't he know him at all? "I'm going to take a shot in the dark here and say you have no idea how this happened?" He gestured to Sam's tiny frame a couple feet away.
Shaking his head, Sam could feel the redness creeping up to his cheeks. He was scared. He knew that.. but so did Dean, and for a moment, his embarrassment overwhelmed his fear.
What was he thinking? This was DEAN! This was the man who went to Hell and back for him, and he was sitting here trembling in his shadow. This was his friend, his partner... this was his big, scratch that, fucking enormous, brother, and he was practically pissing himself in his presence.
The embarrassment, confusion, and fear all bubbled inside of him, building up in his chest like a balloon inflating. All the emotion slurred together in a stagnant concoction, bringing upon a terrifying realization:
Sam Winchester had shrunk.
"What." his voice crawled from his lips quietly, almost unannounced to himself
"The." It raised in volume, and in octave.
"FUCK!" The final word shot out from his mouth like gunfire, and even Dean seemed surprised at his outburst.
Sam stormed around on the bed, stomping his once long legs on the strange and uneasy surface if the bed,and trudged in Deans direction,
"As if... As IF my life was bad enough already! As IF I needed any more problems! Now.. now... THIS?!" He gestured to him self, then threw his arms wide open as he stared at Dean,
"This is great. Just FUCKING GREAT!"
Turning his back to Dean he stormed off towards the pillow and let himself fall down on it face first.
"I am DONE."
Dean, who had leaned down to hear him better, straightened back abruptly upon the stringent exclamation. His eyebrows shot up and stayed there as Sam and his miniature fit of rage marched right by him. As much as he tried to, he couldn't help the smirk that tugged at the corners of his mouth. There was something instantly adorable about a teeny little Sam puffing and huffing like this. Dean buried a silent snicker into the back of his hand before sobering up again. Tilting his head to the side, Dean reached out to ruffle Sam's hair gently. His jaw dropped a little when he saw that his hand alone could very nearly cover Sam head to toe.
"Holy shit... Uhm," he cleared his throat and drew his hand back to himself when he felt the little shoulders stiffen beneath his finger. "We can already rule out demons, as I'm not seeing any sulfur around here. Poltergeists... almost everything in the book, actually." He trailed off in silent thought for a moment. "What about witches?" He seemed to latch onto their only possibility, ready to apply himself. "Yeah... That could work." He mumbled to himself. Dean pinched the back of Sam's shirt and hoisted him to his feet.
"Come on, help me look for a hex bag."
Sam groaned as he was lifted from the pillow.
"Witches Dean? Really?" His brother raised an eyebrow as if to say 'you have a better idea?'
Sam sighed, and roughly tugged his collar away from Dean's massive fingers.
"Fine. Lets look."
Walking to the edge of the bed, Sam looks at the drop and back up at Dean.
"You know what?" says Sam, his voice slightly higher "I'll start by looking on the bed."
"You do that." Dean gives him a mildly amused look. But it was fleeting, as he realized falling out of bed would probably kill him now.
He pushed himself to his feet and got searching everywhere else. He checked behind the nightstand, under the sink, in Sam's suitcase... Dean finally got on his hands and knees under the bed and felt around the metal grating under the mattress, feeling for any sort of protrusion. It was getting more and more hopeless all the while.
After briefly scowering the bed for any bulges and pushing past the pillows, Sam's small.. make that minuscule, well of hope dries up.
'Who am I kidding' he thinks to himself 'We've never known witches to do something like this...'
Sam pacing in circles on the bed, something unnerving him about the whole situation. Something besides him being the size of a Ken doll. Why would something do this? Witches weren't really for letting their victims live, much less force them to live through some embarrassing ... little...GAME!
A resounding THUNK reverberated through the metal bedframe. Dean swore loudly and appeared shortly after, standing up and rubbing his head.
"I've got nothing." He announced. He did another mental sweep of the bed with his eyes. "You?" Even as he asked, Dean was already peering under the covers, double checking Sam's work.
Sam winced as Dean's head smack the bed beneath him, both out of shock and sympathy pain.
"Dean..." Sam repeated, "Since when do hex bags do something like this?" He gestured to himself, growing a little red in the face. "Since when do they leave people alive too?"
Though posed as a question, Sam didn't wait for an answer.
"Out off all the things we faced, what liked to mess with us?" he paused for a moment, seeing Dean's face stay blank. "Who.. who liked to mess with us on a seemingly impossible scale?"
That smirking, annoyingly smug face flashed in his minds she. And just like that, the answer hit him like a brick wall.
"Trickster." Dean finished. How could he not have thought of that? "Friggin bastard..."
He took a few steps away from the bed, before raising his voice at the walls. "Alright, we get it, you're a real comedian. Game's over."
Nothing happened. He waited for anything else strange, any random people popping up at their door. No sign of the Trickster anywhere. Shouldn't he be rubbing in his latest joke-taken-way-too-literally?
Sam frowned. This wasn't helping his point. Though, the feeling in his gut didn't go away. It was Gabriel. It HAD to be. but... why wasn't he here to rub it in? Thinking back to their previous encounters the answer became clear... ish.
"Its a lesson." He moaned. "He wants to teach me a fricken lesson. Now?!"
Throwing his hands in there air out of exasperation, only to pause as he hears the cheap motel tv hiss to life in with staticy vigor. A smug. smiling, and all too familiar face appears on the screen. He looks towards Sam and winks,