A/N - This was inspired by a challenge posted in the P.L. Wynter forum--what would happen if Sam and Dean ran into a case that was more normal than paranormal? Just a little light fun.
Sam pressed harder on the shirt he was using to stanch the flow of blood from his brother's shoulder, ignoring Dean's hiss of pain and string of expletives as he did so.
"I cannot believe that punk shot me!" Dean said finally, and Sam's jaw clenched in irritation.
"He had a gun and was fleeing a robbery, Dean. What the hell did you think he was going to do?" Sam applied more pressure, and tried not to think "it serves you right" when Dean protested. Sam's initial fear for his brother's safety was rapidly giving way to anger.
"Can you hold this in place while I get the car?" Sam asked, and at Dean's short nod, Sam stood, positioning his brother's hand on the bloody shirt and indicating how much pressure he should put on the wound. Then Sam jogged out of the alley and headed back to the convenience store parking lot where they had left the Impala.
He had hoped to return undetected, but luck wasn't with him. The small group that had been inside the store when the robber burst in was still milling around the parking lot, though the cops hadn't arrived yet. The petite brunette Dean had been flirting with earlier, and who Sam had unreasonably decided to hold personally responsible for this whole mess, spotted him and approached slowly, looking concerned.
When Sam saw the fear in her eyes his better nature took over and he sighed, some of his anger leaving him. She wasn't responsible, not really. She couldn't help the fact that she was cute and curvy and in distress with those big doe eyes that Dean always fell for. Sam decided that the person he was really mad at was his stupid, idiotic, cocky, crazy cowboy-with-a-hero-complex big brother.
"What happened?" the girl--Sam couldn't remember her name--asked him anxiously.
Sam decided that the best course of action was to lie. He shrugged.
"Guy got away."
"I heard a gunshot," the girl persisted.
"Yeah, but he missed," said Sam, glad that this girl didn't know him well enough to see he was lying. He kept his hands in his pockets and his back to the light pouring out of the store, thankful that it was nighttime and that his dark jacket hid the bloodstains.
"He's waiting over there--wanted to make sure the guy didn't circle around to come back." Sam smiled tightly and turned toward the Impala, praying that this chick would take the hint. She did, and her big doe eyes grew impossibly larger and more pitiful. For the second time in under a minute, Sam sighed, turning back around.
"Sorry about your purse," he managed. "Maybe the cops will find it."
"Sure," she said, placing a hesitant hand on his sleeve. "Tell Dean I said thanks for trying."
Sam nodded and hopped into the car, taking care not to give in to his impulse to burn rubber on his way out of the parking lot.
Dean was still sitting where Sam had left him,complaining to the surrounding air. Sam could hear him ranting when he opened the driver's side door.The younger Winchester gritted his teeth and promised himself that he wouldn't kill his brother until they'd gotten the bullet out and his shoulder had time to knit. But after that, all bets were off.
"What took you?" snapped Dean.
"Your little doe-eyed girlfriend back at the Circle K." Sam bent down, levered Dean's good arm over his shoulder and carefully helped him to his feet. They made their way slowly back to the car, and Sam got the passenger side door open.
"There's towels in the trunk."
Sam glared at his brother and popped the trunk, retrieving a couple of towels and spreading them over the passenger seat. "Yes. Heaven forfend we besmirch the interior of your car! Never mind that you have a gunshot wound--which you got acting like a dumbass!"
Dean glared back as he slowly lowered himself into the car. "It was only a .22---and I did not act like a dumbass!"
Sam leaned down to check the wound and reposition the shirt over it, indicating to Dean where to apply the pressure. "You chased an armed robber out of a convenience store and into an alley, and why? Not because he robbed the store, but because on his way out he snatched a purse from some hot chick you were flirting with!"
Dean huffed in frustration and swung his legs into the car. Sam slammed the door a little harder than necessary and got in on the driver's side. He glanced over at Dean, prepared to lecture him all over again, and was met by a slightly shakier version of the patented Dean grin.
"So you admit she was hot," Dean said.
"I hate you."
"Aw, c'mon, Sam! How was I supposed to know the guy had a gun? All he had in the store was a knife, and I totally could have taken him, but he cheated."
"Yes, and why would a criminal do something like cheat? Or hide another weapon on his person? Or steal, for that matter? Christ, Dean, you could have been killed!"
"I could be killed every day, Sam."
"But this is different!"
Sam fell silent. He couldn't explain why it was different, why he could handle the close calls and injuries when they were at the hands of something supernatural, but not at those of some drug-addicted teenager. It was just that in all the years of fearing for the lives of his other family members while they faced down evil it had never occurred to him that they could be taken out by some punk kid in a botched purse snatching. But he couldn't tell Dean that without sounding stupid, so he didn't.
"It just is," he said finally, and he could practically hear Dean's eyes rolling in response. "That's what they have cops for, Dean, okay? Trained professionals!"
"We're trained professionals!"
"At killing stuff that's already dead, not busting robbers! What do you think this is, Starsky and Hutch?"
"Whatever," grumbled his brother. "Let's just get back to the motel..."
"You mean the hospital."
"It's just a flesh wound," quipped Dean, but Sam was not amused.
"You have a gunshot wound, Dean, and you are going to the hospital. Unless you want me digging around in your shoulder with a pair of tweezers and no anesthesia."
Dean made a face, but complied. "Yes, mom."
After another 3 hours spent in the emergency room, Dean lying on a treatment table and Sam lying to the cops, they were finally back in the Impala and headed to the motel.
Dean was feeling no pain, thanks to the prescription the hospital had filled for him. He leaned back in the passenger seat and closed his eyes. Sam hoped he was asleep, but again, luck wasn't with him.
"Hutch," Dean said after a moment.
"You would totally be Hutch--he was always walking around being moody and worried."
"He was also taller."
Dean ignored the jibe. "Yeah, but Starsky was the ladies man, and he had a kickass car. I would definitely be him."
"Starsky was an idiot."
"You just don't appreciate classic automobiles and dashing good looks."
"Neither did that robber."
Dean cracked open one eye and fixed Sam with a glare. "Ha. Ha."
"Just--don't do that again, okay man?" Sam didn't dare get any more serious than that, but Dean got what his brother meant.
Sam pursed his lips but didn't reply, and they drove the rest of the way in silence.