It just never ends, Dean thinks. The hits just keep coming. One after the other with barely a breath between. Since he was four years old, it's been one long, never-ending story of survival between catastrophes. Mom on the ceiling, Dad going two left turns short of crazy with grief, Sam leaving, Dad dying, Sam dying, Bobby dying. Dean dying and going to Hell. Fucking Purgatory. Stopping demons, the apocalypse, and the Devil himself. Non-stop. Never-ending. He's so tired.

And now he and Sam are in charge of ending the Heaven versus Hell rumble. Again. And again. And with only sporadic assistance from Castiel, the angel of Thursday and Split Personality Disorder. How did they get that job? He didn't ask for the responsibility, but between Abbadon and Crowley, it seems the vote was rigged.

Is a break between the ends of the world too much to ask? Some time off to breathe, sleep, rest, get laid, do laundry, eat a fucking sandwich? Dean sighs deeply, closes his eyes in weary fatigue, then squares his shoulders. Time to get on with it.

He motions to Sam to hurry his ass up, and after his brother stows the gear, they take off. Not exactly sure where yet. Down the road. Away from here. That way, wherever that way turns out to be. It's a pretty sure bet they'll run into one clusterfuck or another, no matter their direction. He thinks fondly back to the days when the fork in the road made the decision between a Rugaru or a Poltergeist. Now it's Angel or Demon. Heaven or Hell. Bad or really fucking bad.

Seven hours in the car, endless miles down the road, he still has no idea where they're going. Dean won't tell Sam that, though. even when his brother has had enough of his shit, Sam will trust Dean's instincts on a job. But fuck it, there's a bar and Dean could use a drink. It's dark and late and he's tired. A mile farther and he sends Sam into some random motel to get a room. Dean rolls the Impala back toward the booze. It's the only thought that has brought him and form of anticipation today. That sweet, burning rush. The blast of heat that brings the cool of indifference it can bring if you drink enough.

He drinks one whiskey after the other, not giving one shit what the brand might be. Just feeling the heat. Gaining indifference in the smallest of fractions. Not fast enough. He drinks more, becoming aware of how the smoke from the cigarette resting in a tray three stools down from him curls in the air, as lazy as his thoughts. He hears the sound of the creasing of the canvas that forms his jacket as it bends to bring the glass to his lips. It doesn't have the same satisfying creak that Dad's old leather had. He feels the intermittent breeze caress his face as the fan above the bar swings back around to him and wonders if anything else will touch him tonight.

He closes his eyes and draws a breath, wishing the whiskey would do its job. Please, just a fucking break from this emo shit he can never escape.

When he opens his eyes, she is there.