Disclaimer: Don't own Supernatural, I'm just writing for fun.


Sam Winchester stepped out of the shower and instantly realized something was wrong. Not wrong like dangerous, but off. He hastily wrapped a towel around his waist and stood frozen in the steam filled bathroom. He extended his senses and tried to put his finger on what was bothering him. It took only a moment to figure out – Dean was singing.

Sam's eyebrows rose nearly to his hairline. Dean was singing? It took Sam a minute to wrap his mind around what he was hearing, and even then he didn't quite believe it

This time of year was pretty slow for hunting. Demons and the like didn't necessarily follow the calendar, but there was a power to this time of year. The weeks leading up to Christmas were notoriously slow, but on New Year's there was always something happening. The turning of the year always opened up a window between worlds, and they had headed up to Michigan to head off a particularly nasty demon that liked to stalk and dismember innocents on New Year's to give it a power boost to carry it through the rest of the year. But New Year's Eve was a week off, and they were biding their time in nicely appointed motel; taking inventory, restocking and doing some serious weapon maintenance.

The only real down side to taking a break this time of year was the music. No matter where they traveled around the country, radio stations of every format had changed over to all Christmas music. In the car it didn't matter so much – Dean just popped in one of his cassettes and they rolled. But in the motel it was more difficult. Even if there was a station that hadn't gone over to the all Christmas format, the reception sucked and they were stuck with whatever they could tune it. It didn't bother Sam at all, but the more he traveled with Dean the more he realized that Dean could just not tolerate silence. He could deal with not talking, but he always had to have some kind of background static. Sam didn't get it, but they all had their quirks.

Dean had unpacked most of the contents of his trunk and scattered everything around the room. To anyone else it would've looked like a mess, but Sam knew that Dean knew the position of every weapon down to the last silver bullet. Sam also knew that when Dean got started on a project like this he liked to work alone, at least in the beginning. Everything had to be placed just so; everything had to be organized to his complete satisfaction. In that way he was disturbingly like Dad. Only when he was totally ready would he let Sam help, and that usually involved pointing and saying "clean that one Sammy."

So, in an effort to give Dean some space, Sam jumped into the shower. Right before Sam had closed the bathroom door Dean had flipped on the radio, and Tran-Siberian Orchestra's "Christmas Eve Sarajevo" was playing. That was right up Dean's alley, so he left it on. But clearly enough time had passed so the song was over, and Dean was either too far away from the radio or too engrossed to change the station.

Sam cracked the bathroom door slightly so he could see into the room and hear a little better. There was Dean, totally focused on the shotgun laid out in his lap, sitting at the small motel table singing right along with Nat King Cole's "Christmas Song". Sam drew back from the door silently, but left it open. He was stunned. He didn't think he could remember a time in his life that he'd heard Dean sing like that. Oh, they'd sung the occasional travel song in the car like "1,000 Bottles of Beer on the Wall" until Dad was ready to kill them; but those songs were sung at the top of their lungs and needed no finesse at all.

The song changed again to "White Christmas" – Dean didn't miss a beat, he joined right in. It made Sam smile to hear Dean sing to such an old-fashioned song; he had a good voice for it. Sam couldn't carry a tune if it was handed to him on a plate, so this revelation of his brother's unknown talent was amazing to him. But it made him sad too. Sam knew without a shadow of a doubt, that if Dad were here with them, Dean would never be singing. When Dad was around Dean was always on the job; he did everything Dad ever wanted, and he was always read to do more.

Sam got dressed silently; he didn't want to make any noise that would disrupt Dean's focus. He wanted to listen for as long as he could. He sat on the edge of the tub and listened to Dean croon "Silver Bells" and "Jingle Bell Rock". Dean's rendition of "O Holy Night" actually gave Sam chills. But the next song was "No Place Like Home for the Holidays". Dean sang along at first, but it seemed to Sam that when he started to listen to the lyrics as he was singing, something got to him. Sam realized with a pang of grief that the concert was over. Dean cleared his throat and Sam could hear something clatter onto the table.

"Didja fall in, Sam?" Dean called from the outer room.

Sam opened the door to the bathroom wide and exited carrying his shoes and used towels. "Nah, just grabbing a few things."

Sam surveyed the cluttered room. "Where do you want me to start?"

Dean pointed to his bed where a collection of knives was strewn. "Check the knives. Clean and sharpen. You know the drill."

Sam just nodded and got to work. The strains of "Silent Night" filled their silent room and they were back to business as usual.

The End