"You want me to go get dinner?"

Dean glanced up. Sam was subdued—but nowadays, that was relatively normal.

"Yeah, sure," he responded, similarly unenthusiastic. "Thanks."

"No problem," Sam said blandly, and then he was gone, and Dean didn't have to pretend to care anymore. He flicked open the laptop, unwilling to hit up the news sites and see even more damage from the ongoing apocalypse, and not in the mood for any of his usual online proclivities. Dean's gaze wandered, and he suddenly noticed the date. May 2nd. Sammy's birthday. Huh.

"Dean?"

Dean flinched and automatically went for his gun until he recognized Castiel. "Crap, stop doing that, man."

Cas looked unrepentant. "We have to hurry."

Dean sighed. "What is it now?"

"Where is Sam?"

"Getting dinner. Seriously, what's the deal?" Dean got off the bed. "Lucifer?"

Castiel shook his head, looking on edge. "We have to leave, now."

"Why?" Dean demanded. "I'm not going anywhere until you explain what's going on."

"Anna has decided that the best way to prevent Lucifer from gaining power is to kill Sam."

Dean froze. Sure, he wasn't on the best terms with his brother at the moment, but that didn't mean he wanted him dead. "We'll go get him, he's just down the road—"

"No. Not in the present. In the past."

Dean gaped. "She can do that?"

"Sam is in great danger. We must go now."

Dean did not protest as Castiel reached out and touched his forehead.


Sam slung his backpack onto his shoulders, ignoring the taunts of the few kids with whom he had a quarrel. The teacher had looked a little too concerned in the morning as Sam had stammered out a reason why Dean was not attending, so he had to hurry home.

Ever since he had learned about the supernatural, Sam couldn't help but feel on edge every time he was alone. And with Dad and Dean on a hunt . . . Sam quickened his steps, glancing over his shoulder as he heard a strange rustling. Sam was still working on the concept of being brave—Dean had it down, but Sam wasn't as good as his brother.

"Sam, dear, your father back, yet?"

Sam flinched, but it was just Ms. Aubrey.

"Not yet," he said. "Should be back soon." He sped inside as fast as he could.

Sam checked the wards quickly, double-checking the salt line and triple-checking the symbols on the door before he sat down and started his homework.

"Sam Winchester."

Sam shrieked and fell backwards off of his chair. A red-haired woman with a dagger was standing in his room.

"Who are you?" Sam gasped, even as he hunted for his knife with his other hand.

"I am an angel, Sam Winchester. This is not personal, and I am sorry, but you must die."

Sam tried to dodge—he really did—but terror made him slow and clumsy, and his parry only slid the angel's dagger a short distance away from his heart.

There was an unbearable pressure. Sam stared down in shock at the silver blade sticking between his ribs. He was going to die. An angel had thought he deserved to die. He had always thought something was wrong with him; maybe this was his punishment.

"Hey!"

Sam blinked as two other guys seemed to materialize out of nowhere. One of them immediately sagged—had he been stabbed too?—but the other slammed into the angel woman with a knife of his own.

"No, don't, she's an angel!" Sam tried to stop him, but the knife in his lungs made his words choke in his throat.

The man knelt down next to Sam. "Sammy, it's gonna be okay, I promise, just hang in there."

"Dean—"

"Yeah?" The man looked weird. Sam dazedly tried to focus on his face, but it was blurring.

"I want Dean. Please. I need Dean." Sam whimpered as the man put pressure around his knife wound.

The man looked distressed, and Sam tried to see if he had a knife wound too. "Sammy, I'm—"

The other man came close. "Move aside, Dean."

Sam frowned, about to try and speak again, when with a swift yank, the man pulled out the knife, and he knew no more.


"Easy, easy, Sammy, it's gonna be fine." Dean was babbling but he didn't care. They had been too late, what would this mean? Would he never get to see his little brother grow up? Would he lose those memories of Sam's grin, Sam having his back during hunts, Sam—

Castiel put a hand on Sam's forehead and took a deep breath.

"Cas?" Dean tried hesitantly.

"That is the best I can do without stranding us here. We must return. Call for assistance for him, and then we will leave."

Dean looked down at Sam, pale and bloody in his arms. "But—"

"Dean, now."

Unwillingly, Dean put Sam down and used the phone to make a brief 911 call. Castiel had his hand around the limp wrist of Anna, and Dean swallowed, chancing one more glance at his brother.

"We must leave."

"Fine."

Dean opened his eyes to find Sam—alive, whole, Sam—sitting at the end of his bed, head in his hands like his world was ending.

"Sam?"

Sam's head shot up. "Dean!" Beside him, Dean felt Castiel sway, and quickly grabbed the angel's arm and guided him towards the bed. "What's going on?"

"Emergency trip to the past," Dean grunted.

"Oh. I thought you had—" Sam's voice cut off, and Dean could hear the unsaid words. "Left me."

Dean made sure Cas was set and then considered Sam. "You don't remember?"

Sam frowned. "Remember what?"

"Being stabbed, when you were about thirteen."

Sam's eyes widened. "Wait. That was . . . that was you?"

Dean reached out—noticing Sam's repressed flinch with a horrible twist of his own guts—and lifted the edge of Sam's shirt, finding a scar he knew had never existed before.

"Yeah. Anna tried to kill you."

Sam swallowed convulsively. "Oh."

Dean could hear Sam's mind churning, and stared at his brother, hard. "Sam . . ."

"Would that . . . work?"

Dean fisted his hand in Sam's shirt. "Don't you say that. Don't even . . ."

"Dean, it might be better—"

"No! I don't care. I want you with me, Sam. We've let everything get screwed up, but you and me, we're going to fight, you hear me?" Dean growled.

Sam's eyes looked abnormally shiny, and Dean tried to keep his own gaze steady.

"Okay," Sam whispered.

Dean relaxed his fist and patted Sam's intact, non-bloody chest. "Yeah," he murmured, half to himself. "Okay."


A/N: I wrote this ages ago for the prompt on ohsam:

Season 5 AU with pre-series mixed in, Gen. Happy Birthday Sam! Today, you get an angel who wants to go back into the past and kill you! Otherwise known as: Anna travels back into the past to kill Sam when he was alone. Present!Dean and Present!Cas go back in time to save him and Dean is reminded of a few things that he's let anger and guilt forget-why he would do anything to protect his baby brother.

meant to put it up here, but totally forgot til now.

Thanks for reading :)