It was the cake that did it. The cake that totally and completely surprised him, even more than the dopey grin of his brother peering down at him as he placed the cupcake down on Sam's biology textbook.
The youngest Winchester peered in unconcealed confusion at the cake that obscured the plant's reproductive organs from view. 'Um…what's that?'
'It's a cake.' Came the simple reply.
'Well I gathered that Dean, I mean what's it doing there?'
'Jeez Sammy for someone who thinks he's so smart you sure can be pretty stupid sometimes,' Dean threw back as he swiped Sam's floppy hair for good measure, 'you think I'm gonna just forget my own little brother's birthday?'
Sam smiled then and ducked his head, absurdly touched and unwilling to show his brother the stupid tears that threatened the back of his eyelids. He smiled and ducked forward blowing out the solitary candle in the middle of the white frosting.
'Did you make a wish?'
'Of course I did.'
'Dean, I'm not supposed to tell you it'll ruin the whole point of the wish.'
'Fine, fine, I'll just assume it came true then, I mean who wouldn't wish for a big brother with this face huh?' His brother winked and beamed at his own joke and Sam laughed along with him for a moment just thankful his brother had remembered at all.
He wasn't that surprised though, he'd be more concerned if Dean hadn't. It had always been his elder brother who made a fuss out of Sam on his birthday, his dad did what he could when he was there, and he did try to make it so they were together on birthdays but the fact remained lives came first. And so did the hunt. And that was where Sam and his father clashed.
'Thanks Dean.' Sam offered with a smile moving the cake to the side of his textbook and tilting it up to read once again.
Dean remained hovered by Sam's bed, 'well? Aren't you going to eat it?'
'Why not now?'
'Dean, man I'm trying to study.'
'Sammy, Sammy, Sammy, all work and no play…'
'I know the phrase Dean.'
The elder Winchester crossed his arms across his chest and rolled his eyes in annoyance, 'then you know what I'm going to suggest next…'
'Uh…that I should get back to work?' Sam attempted hopefully.
'That you should go back to whatever you were doing and leave me in peace like a good big brother?'
'Ah ah…ladies and gentlemen we have a loser.'
'Dean…' Sam growled through gritted teeth.
'Get your coat Sammy we're going out.'
'It's Sam and no I have work to do.'
'Sammy Sammy Sam.'
'Sam, Sam, Sam, Sam, Sam…OW…you little brat.'
Sam withdrew his heal from Dean's toe with a smug smile. 'Leave me alone man. I have a test tomorrow.'
'Sam, I'm sorry but under the big brother rulebook of life I can not possibly fail in my duty and let you study tonight.'
Sam rolled his eyes and rocked back so he leaned against the headboard letting the book fall with a resounding sigh. 'What duty?'
Dean raised his eyebrows and smirked, shutting Sam's book with a resounding thwack. 'Oh trust me little brother you're going to like this one.'
Sam was suddenly afraid.
It took Sam two seconds after entering the bar to realise this might be one of Dean's less brilliant ideas, it took him four beers and seven tequila shots to forget that completely.
He and Dean had entered the bar two hours earlier, a nervous Sam trying to look as inconspicuous as possible for an underage teen and a cocky Dean swaggering in drawing attention like a flame draws moths. 'You wanna make it any more obvious that we're entering the bar?' Sam scowled beneath the baseball cap he'd thrown on hoping to hide his youthful features.
Dean thew up an arm and swung it around his brother's shoulders, 'Lighten up Sam. And take off the cap, I told you it's all about confidence man.'
'No it's all about being 21.'
Dean waved him off, 'meh, what's five years here or there.'
'Dad would murder us, no wait, he wouldn't just murder us, he'd probably salt and burn while we were still alive and THEN murder us.'
'Good thing Dad's not back till tomorrow then.'
Sam sulked for a moment, wishing his Dad was like other parents and actually bothered to be home for their kid's sixteenth birthday. 'Yeah good thing.'
Dean was already at the bar, and Sam shuffled up pulling the cap down further.
'Two beers please.' Dean drawled with a confidence that both awed Sam and pissed him off completely. How the hell he and Dean were related was beyond him. Dean had celebrated his 20th birthday a mere four months previously in Salem, Oregon but he acted as though he'd been legal since he was thirteen years old. Sam cursed the gods for not instilling him with the confidence gene both his father and older brother seemed to share.
Try as he might Sam sucked at lying, he sucked at conning and he sucked at pulling anything off. He tried, god knows he tried, but he just wasn't comfortable lying. It wasn't in his nature, he'd hop from foot to foot like an idiot or look so damned guilty they'd see right through him. Standing now next to Dean, Sam felt every one of his six foot one inches and then some and tried desperately to disappear into the bar stool and avoid attention of any kind.
'And what'll it be for you honey?'
Oh God, she was talking to him. The bartender was talking to him. Sam tucked his chin tighter into his chest and pretended he hadn't heard her.
'I said what'll it be for you darlin?'
Dean pulled off the baseball cap faster than Sam could blush and he looked up in horror as he met the blue eyed gaze of the woman behind the bar.
'Uh…' he stammered uselessly as Dean struggled to hide a grin next to him. 'Um…beer, beer's good.'
Dean laughed, the bastard actually stood there and laughed as Sam practically begged the floor to open up and swallow him. 'Don't mind my brother, he's a little shy, it's his birthday tonight.'
The bartender grinned as she grabbed their beers taking a long sweeping glance at Sam. 'Honey you've got nothing at all to be shy about.'
Sam blushed redder than he did when his Dad walked in on he and Kelly Sutherton making out while rehearsing for the school play as Dean looked two parts proud, two parts put out that the bartender wasn't flirting with him.
'That's what I try to tell him'. His brother tutted, rolling his eyes in a 'what are you gonna do' manner towards Sam.
He earned a kick to the shin for his effort and when he coughed abruptly afterwards it sounded suspiciously like the words 'you're dead.'
The bartender smiled as she took Dean's cash. 'Well I'm Sunny so…'
'You most certainly are.'
Her eyes flitted to Dean in vague annoyance, 'No, I mean my name's Sunny, and I'm here all night if you fellas want anything at all. Just ask.'
Dean plastered on what Sam called his 'pervert pout', 'Will do.'
She shot another flirty glance at Sam that left his mouth dry and then wandered over to a burly customer at the other end of the bar.
As soon as she was out of earshot Dean spun and dramatically flung his arms out, 'What.the.HELL Sam?'
'You totally moved in on my turf man.'
Sam frowned furiously, 'What are you talking about man, I stood here, silently, YOU ripped my hat off and forced me to talk to that girl, if you hadn't done that then she wouldn't have even seen what was underneath and come to the quite obvious conclusion that she liked what she saw here a lot more than your ugly mug.'
Dean's jaw dropped open for a second and he did a scarily good impression of a fish before he threw his head back and burst out laughing, clapping Sam on the shoulder.
'I trained you well young padewan.'
'Fuck you Obi Wan.' Sam shot back with a smirk.
Dean picked up his beer and handed Sam his. 'Touche. Happy Birthday little brother.'
They clinked their bottles.
It was on his fourth tequila that things started to get a little hazy for Sam. Sunny kept sneaking back throughout the night pouring him free shots and throwing in suggestive comments with it and Sam never was very good at saying no to women. He sat resting his chin on his palm, slumped at the bar, watching Dean hustling pool in the far corner.
Dean had been at it for almost an hour.
'Might as well make a profit while we're here Sammy.' He'd said, rubbing his hands together in barely contained glee at the cocky idiots he'd get to take down a peg or two that night. 'You don't mind do you? I know it's your birthday and all and I promise I won't be long.'
Sam didn't mind, not really, and he'd never been very good at saying no to Dean. 'Go ahead. I'll be fine.'
Dean had shot a knowing glance over at Sunny before winking at Sam, 'I bet you will.'
Now four tequilas down the line Sam wasn't sure if he was more fine, or more drunk, but either way he wasn't complaining. Dean kept glancing over regularly and Sam kept positioning himself upright on the stool and doing his very best to look sober.
'You alright sugar?' Sunny asked pouring some more of the lethal liquid into Sam's tall shot glass.
'Name's not sugar, it's Sam.' He offered suddenly fascinated by the way her breasts looked in the red vest. 'Wow.'
'What is it Sam?'
'You have nice boobs.' He told her matter of factly, ignoring the shock on her face, she really did have very nice boobs.
'Well…thanks.' She finally managed with a grin. 'That's not all I got that's nice.'
Sam snorted into his drink as he downed his fifth in a row. 'Are you…' he lowered his voice to a whisper and looked dramatically over each shoulder before continuing, 'are you trying to sedu…sedu…sadu…sa…'
'Am I trying to seduce you?'
'I don't know you tell me.'
'You asked the question.'
'I don't think I did.'
'Yes you did Sam.'
'Why aren't you answering the question?'
Sunny's mouth swung into a smirk, and she leaned over across the bar crushing her lips onto his and hungrily nibbling on his lower lip. 'Does that answer your question?'
Sam frowned. 'It depends.'
'What was my question?'
She pulled back with a sigh as a man down the bar demanded a whiskey. Sam brought up his hands to his face and giggled.
Oh man. She kissed him. Properly sucked his lip, Dean would be so jealous. Hah in your face Dean.
He turned around to see if his older brother had seen it and was disappointed to see him circling the pool table like a shark. Great, now Dean hadn't even seen.
Whatever, no way he'd believe him now.
Frowning he took the beer from the guy next to him when he wasn't looking. Hah. His dad hadn't taught him to be stealthy for nothing.
Two shots later Dean still wasn't back, Sunny's boobs looked bigger and Sam wasn't quite sure where he was. But he was sure that he wanted to stay here. This crazy land, where he had four arms instead of two and he got to stay at that place, that place where they served drinks, what was the name of it? That place where he could get a drink, where he could get…yeah…a drink.
'Another of your finest Muchacho.' He announced with a flourish, snapping his fingers towards a blurry red form.
'Sam? You think you've had enough honey?'
'I don't even like honey.' He announced seriously. 'But I will take a beer, I will definitely take a beer, no hang on, I will take all your beer, every one…you know once my Dad he said that instead of rocksalt, you could use beer to burn the bones, no wait, wait, that's not right…beer to…no burning…'
'Where?' He asked staring wildly around the room before turning back to the blurry form of Sunny and jabbing a finger at his chest. 'No, I'm Sam.'
Sunny placed a hand on either side of his face and peered closely into his eyes. 'Yes you're Sam.'
'God you're pretty' he stared back adoringly, 'you're just so pretty.'
She leaned in furthur.
'But my brother says I shouldn't touch things if I don't know where they've been.'
If Sam had been sober then he'd have known not to reply to her question. 'What the hell do you mean by that?'
But Sam wasn't sober and he'd never been good at ignoring women. He leaned closer over enunciating each word, 'Well what I mean is I don't know how many other men you've been with.'
Her voice had developed an edge now, 'WHAT?'
Sam sighed. 'Do you have a hearing problem? I'm sorry I just mean that you could have been anywhere, you know?'
He didn't feel the slap until a good five seconds after he heard it.
'OW!' He reeled back, dizzy, 'you just slapped my face.'
'You're damned right I did you little shit.'
'Well there's no need to be rude.'
'Actually there is Sam, you just called me a whore.'
'No, no, not a whore…' Sam managed slurring, 'just a bit skanky…I guess.'
He didn't feel the second slap either but he found himself falling face down into the bar for a moment. 'Whoa…hello…'
He heard her high hells stomping away and he blew out a whistle, 'pheeeeew touchy.'
A roar of laughter burst out next to him and he spun hands out defensively.
What was that noise? A wendigo, was there a wendigo here? No not a wendigo, a demon.
'Stop there, stop, christo.' He mumbled.
'Oh kid, that was some performance.' A big blurry shape that looked suspiciously human smiled from the barstool next to him.
'May the power of Christ compel you.' Sam shot back squinting at this new foe.
Suddenly something was thrust into Sam's hand and he found himself staring into another bottle of beer. He brought it right to his eye and peered in suspiciously. 'This is a beer.'
'Give the kid a prize' the laughing nemesis snorted. 'I've been waiting for someone to knock that Sunny of her pedestal for a while now. She keeps sleeping with patrons, sniffing out the ones she thinks are made of money.'
Sam nodded, 'a succubus?'
'Just your run of the mill gold digger son.'
'You said son. I'm Sam.'
'My name's John.'
Sam laughed and shook his head, 'no you're not. My dad's name's John.'
'Well great, I'm John too.'
'You're not my father.' Sam protested staggering to his feet.
'I never said I was.'
Sam took the beer and spun on his heel, pointing a finger at the blurry figure, 'you…' he slurred backing up quickly, 'you stay away from me you doppleganger.'
Where the hell did that doppleganger come from? He hadn't even seen it come in. Never mind his vision became clear for a moment and he found himself face to face with a stage, and something that was in the form of a woman singing but sounded like the hellish screams of a nemesis the Winchesters had fought before.
'Banshee.' Sam shouted covering his ears as he stumbled onto the stage and poured the salt packet he'd kept from his tequila stint onto her hair.
'What the hell?' The woman shouted into what looked like a fuzzy black weapon and shoved Sam in the shoulder before pushing past him embarrassed, 'you jerk.'
She dropped the fuzzy weapon and Sam bent down to examine it closer when he felt a bright light shine into his eyes and he staggered under the glare. 'Ahh. Christo! Christo!' He shouted.
'What do you wanna do buddy?' A loud voice shouted too close to Sam's ear for his liking.
'What do you wanna do?'
'What...what are you talking about?' He stammered, throwing his arms up and attempting to see through the white glare.
Where was the rock salt, where was his Dad, where was Dean? What was this god forsaken light shining in his eyes and what was this fuzzy weapon for. Suddenly everything was too loud.
'I don't know what to do.' He managed miserably. 'Just…I just don't know what to do.'
The first sign Dean Winchester had that his little brother was in any way in need of assistance was in the moment after his pool opponent looked over towards the far end of the bar and Dean got a shot in while he wasn't looking.
Dean smirked proudly to himself.
Hah. This guy was far too easy.
The noise of the bar was broken when a voice erupted out of the loudspeakers in each corner, 'And now singing Elvis Costello's 'I just don't know what to do with myself' we have…' the barman paused and a voice Dean knew better than his own whispered a horrified, 'Christo'.
'Ladies and gentlemen give it up for Christo singing 'I don't know what to do with myself, take it away Christo.'
Dean spun in abject horror to see his little brother stood in the centre of the karaoke stage looking for all the world like someone had just kicked his puppy.
'I just don't…don't…' Sam stammered, 'I just don't know what to do with myself.'
The music bam bam bammed loudly after Sam's line and he jumped like he'd been shot.
Dean's mouth hung open as he pushed his way through the crowd intent on saving Sam.
'Just don't know what to do with myself.'
People seemed to stop what they were doing all around the bar as the shaky teen's voice carried the melody beautifully. Dean briefly wondered just how long he'd been playing pool and whether it was enough time for he and Sam to have slipped into an alternate dimension, because…WHAT.THE.HELL
Because Sam, his sixteen year old little brother, his Sammy, was the worst singer known to man, and there was simply no way in god's earth that he was standing in the middle of a crowded bar, smiling into a microphone performing his very own massacre of an Elvis Costello medly.
Except he was.
'I just don't know what to do with my time
I'm so lonesome for you, it's a crime'
Sam warbled and to Dean's horror he began strutting around the stage as if he owned it.
'Going to a movie only makes me sad
Parties make me feel as bad
When i'm not with you, i just don't know what to doooooooooooooooooo.'
Dean moved closer, pushing through rowdy punters.
'Like a summer rose…' Sam screamed jumping up and down attempting a poorly executed Ozzy Osbourne move, 'needs the sun and rain. I need your sweet love to beat all the pain.'
Oh God Dean's mind wandered frantically, what the hell had possessed his brother while he was gone? He peered up at Sam who had still failed to notice his brother's approach to the stage.
'Sing it with me now.' His stupid brother yelled shaking his head, his long bangs flying into his face in a truly horrifically manner. And damn it all to hell if the bar didn't join in, clapping their hands to the beat, 'I just don't know what to do with myself.'
Dean had heard enough and he quickly rushed up to the stage and grabbed a surprised Sam ushering them both off the stage.
'What the HELL are you doing Sam? Way to not draw attention to yourself.'
Sam stared at him aghast, 'Dean? Dean is that you?'
To Dean's annoyance the bar crowd began to boo him and shout as he spoke to his brother.
'Christo, Christo, Christo!' They chanted over and over.
Sam cocked his head to the side seriously. 'Are you possessed?'
Dean stared incredulously, 'What?'
'I can hear christo and I know I'm not possessed so that means…' Sam offered, pointing a finger at Dean's chest, 'that you must be possessed.'
'Christo.' Sam shouted loudly in Dean's face.
'Sam? What are you…'
Sam spun quickly and grabbed something off the bar, and the salt hit Dean in the face before he could even register his brother had thrown it. 'Where's my brother demon?'
'Oh you just made a serious mistake.' Dean growled pissed off, rubbing furiously at his eyes and grabbing Sam hard by the arm. 'What the fuck has gotton into you?' But before Sam could answer a woman behind them tugged on Sam's shirt.
'Hey Christo, that was awesome, you have to finish the song honey.'
'Wha….' Sam frowned at her, 'go away.'
Dean's mouth dropped open once again and he was growing pretty tired of the fish impersonation tonight, 'Come on Sam.' He muttered pulling his little brother away from the shocked woman.
Sam smiled as the fuzzy shapes danced before him, heh, they were funny, all different colors and pretty…color was cool. It made things pretty. The sun was yellow…yeah that's right…yellow like Dean's hair and cheese…wow cheese was good…he could have some cheese right now…
Dean pulled Sam to the corner of the bar and shoved him a little hard into a booth. 'You want to explain to me what the hell that little display was all about?'
Sam cocked his head again, pausing for a long moment to consider the question, 'Do we have any cheese?'
Dean's eyebrows shot up to his forhead, 'What now?'
Sam frowned like when he had a really hard math problem he was struggling with, 'cheese. Cause that's good food you know man…there are so many different…' he squinted, 'so many different types of cheese…just so many…yeah…' he nodded to himself, 'yeah there's a lot.'
The elder Winchester stood stock still for a long moment watching as Sam rambled on about cheese or something and then it hit him hard in the solar plexus. What an idiot? How the hell had he missed it. He leaned down and grabbed his younger brother's chin in his palm.
'Sam? Hey…look at me. Are you drunk?'
Sam's eyes were having immense difficulty focussing on him but when they did they gave Dean the answer he'd been looking for. 'Just give me some cheese Dean…just want the cheese.'
'Oh for god's sake.' Dean breathed out furiously. 'How did you get drunk, I left you for like an hour and I had all the cash.'
'Is it bright in here? Cause I think it's bright.'
'Sam? Hey?' Dean went to tap his face then noticed two large red marks on his brother's cheeks. 'What the HELL happened to your face?'
'Yeah…how rude was that? We were totally just talking and then WHAM. I don't like her Dean, she's bad news…bad bad news.' He pulled the front of Dean's shirt yanking him down till he was eye level and glanced over in the direction of the bartender with a hushed whisper, 'you reckon we should sic Dad on her Dean?'
Dean followed his brother's line of sight and spotted Sunny grabbing glasses off the bar.
'Did she do this to you Sammy?' He asked quietly.
Sam put on his best puppy dog eyes and gave a solemn nod.
That was all Dean needed. He turned to Sam and put on his best John Winchester face, 'stay here.' He ordered, 'and don't move from this spot. I find you gone your ass is grounded you got it?'
'Uh stop shouting.' Sam moaned leaning forward and grabbing his head in his hands.
'Sam you got that?'
His brother offered a sarcastic salute, 'sir yes sir'.
Dean made a mental note to kick Sam's drunken ass in the morning. But first he had another ass to kick. Watching his brother warily he pushed forward back to the bar and drew to a stop near the older woman.
'You do that to my little brother's face?' He asked quietly.
'The little brat had it coming.' She replied, sticking her nose up in the air and sneering at Dean.
Dean grabbed her wrist so fast she almost dropped the glass she was carrying.
He flung his face next to hers, so close he could feel her breath on his cheek. 'Now here's the thing Miss 'In Need Of A Clue'…'
'Whatever. I tend to make a habit of not hitting women, chalk it down to my unfortunately good upbringing, but you listen to me you crazy bitch, you so much as come near my brother again, you touch a single hair on his head, I see you even sneer in his direction and I will be all over your ass faster than Dennis Rodman on viagra you got me?'
'I gave the little shit all night free tequilas and he called me a whore.'
Dean barked out a laugh, 'Hah. Maybe he's smarter than I give him credit for.'
Sunny's eyes turned to ice. 'You know all I need to do is shout and any of these guys will kick your scrawny ass for grabbing me the way you are.'
'Oh yeah…go ahead and try.' Dean shot back, 'and I'll report your ass tomorrow for serving alcohol to minors.'
'What are you talking about?'
Dean smirked and stuck a hand out, 'Hi, Dean, 20. Oh and did I forget to mention that Sam's only 16?'
Sunny's face paled and she opened her mouth to respond when a loud clap had both there heads snapping to the right.
'Woooo, fight! Fight! Fight!' Sam shouted from where he now stood at the bar, clapping his hands together in drunken glee. 'Goooooo Dean! Kick her ass.'
Dean was furious. 'Sam!'
But he had more pressing matters when a great hulk of a guy, easily 6'6 to Sam's 6'1 appeared from next to Sam and peered over at Dean and Sunny.
'You alright Sunny, this punk's not bothering you is he?'
Sam let out a loud gasp and poked the guy in the arm, 'Dean? This guy just called you a punk,' he poked the hulk again for good measure, 'this guy here.'
The hulk turned to Sam with a menacing glare. 'Do NOT poke me little man.'
'You remind me of someone.' Sam announced making an elaborate show of putting a finger to his chin, 'yeah Dean you remember that guy? And he was in that film? Yeah you know the one…the Goonies?'
The Hulk straightened up menacingly, 'Are you saying I look like that runt Sean Astin?' He growled.
Sam shook his head, 'no…no…' he mumbled before grinning wickedly. 'You look like that ugly monster thing, Sloth.'
The Hulk snaked a hand out to grab Sam and Dean hauled him back quickly. 'No he does though doesn't he Dean? He looks just like him.'
'Sam for the love of god shut your mouth.'
Dean yanked Sam as fast as he could away and started storming through the crowd but not before he heard Sunny telling the Hulk to let them be. Hah. Good he'd scared the witch.
Dean practically dragged the younger Winchester out the bar door and into the parking lot, hauling his little brother's sorry ass down the steps.
'Ow Dean…' Sam whined, 'you're hurting me.'
'I am SO pissed at you right now.' Dean ranted. 'You almost got us killed in there.'
'Yes you Sam.'
Sam was silent for a moment as Dean pulled his arm around his shoulder and helped him walk. 'Dean?'
Dean ignored him and tried to let the adrenaline leave his body.
Shut up, he thought to himself.
'What Sam?' Dean finally exploded.
'I don't feel good.' Sam announced before throwing up all over Dean's shoes.
By the time they reached the motel room Sam had decided Dean was an astroprojection, he was going to leave the hunting business and work in the circus and that if they didn't have any cheese he was walking to France.
Dean had decided he was going to make Sam buy him new shoes tomorrow and that he'd never listen to his dad's Elvis Costello album in quite the same light ever again.
They arrived back at the door and Dean unlocked it, shoving a mumbling Sam into the motel room and pausing to take a swift look around outside to make sure there was nothing in the darkness they had to worry about.
Unfortunately he hadn't counted on the one danger inside the room.
'Oh hi Dad.' Sam's voice echoed out to Dean's ear, 'we don't have any cheese do we?'
Dean winced in absolute horror and prayed his brother was just rambling to himself as he gingerly entered the motel room. Unfortunately luck was once again against him as he spotted the slouched form of his father sitting in a chair in the centre of the room, a furious expression on his face and his cell phone in his hand.
John Winchester glanced at Sam then at Dean his eyes almost black in the dim light, 'Where have you boys been?' He shouted, 'do you have ANY idea how worried I've been, why didn't you answer your phones?'
Belatedly Dean realised the noise of the bar had probably prevented him from hearing his and he highly doubted Sam would have heard a freight train the state he was in let alone his cell.
'I told you to stay in the room at night. How god damned hard is that for you to understand?'
Dean recognised his father's fury for what it was, the residual feelings of terror over his boys. Unfortunately Sam sober at the best of times was argumentative and drunk Sam looked to be even worse.
'Uh shut up.' He announced firmly and John's head swivelled so fast Dean worried he'd pulled something.
'What did you say to me Sam?'
'I said…' Sam muttered, 'shut up. I can't hear myself think with all your yelling Dad.'
Dean had never seen his father turn purple before. It was fascinating and horrifying at the same time.
John looked like he'd been chewing nails, he stared at his youngest and spat furiously, 'and how might you like me to talk to you Sam?'
Sam seemed to consider this for a long moment and he cocked his head to the side. 'Maybe you could sing us the lecture?'
Dean fought courageously against the insane desire to burst into laughter.
Oh god, stop Dean, now is NOT the time.
'Dad…Dad…' he jumped in before his Dad could murder his only sibling. 'He didn't mean it ok, we didn't expect you back tonight and we just went out to celebrate Sammy's birthday, sorry we didn't have our phones on, it must have been too loud where we were. We're all just tired lets just go to bed alright?'
Sam looked affronted that Dean had jumped in.
'You know what would ease some of this tension?' He mused out loud.
'Alright…' John demanded 'what is going on? Where have you two been? And why the hell are you so desperate for cheese Sam?'
'I don't want cheese.'
'You just said you did.'
'No I didn't.'
'Yes you did Sam.'
'Sam shut up. Dad calm down.'
'What is going on and what is wrong with your brother?'
'Me? What's wrong with you?'
'Sam for gods sake!'
'Samuel Joshua Winchester!'
'Jeez you name a few Waltons and hell breaks loose…'
'ALRIGHT THAT'S ENOUGH!'
Dean jumped as his Dad slammed his fist down on the dresser. 'What in god's name is going on Dean?' He turned a finger to Sam as the youngest Winchester opened his mouth, 'you…shut up.' He turned back to Dean, 'You…speak.'
Dean visibly swallowed, 'we went out to the bar to celebrate Sam's birthday.'
John shut his eyes tightly, 'you took your sixteen year old brother to a bar?'
Dean sighed, 'I swear I left him for like an hour or so Dad, I just wanted to hustle some pool and when I came back he'd had a few too many.'
'How many's a few?' John growled turning to Sam this time.
'Meh…more than a dozen less than a dime.'
'Why do you insist on shouting at me?'
John ran a weary hand over his face and let out a sigh lowering his tone to what could be construed as gentle, 'I'm not shouting at you Sammy.'
Sam sniffed theatrically, 'sure sounded like it.'
John huffed at that, 'Sam…do you think it's time we put you to bed?'
Sam sighed deeply, 'I guess.'
Dean breathed a sigh of relief as his Dad moved over to his brother and manoeuvred him onto his bed helping him pull his navy shirt over his head.
Dean moved closer till he and his Dad were both at the ends of Sam's legs each removing a shoe and a sock. Once they'd stripped the youngest down to his boxers John moved to pull the throw up over his son and surprised Dean by leaning down to offer his son a rough kiss on the head.
John let his hand rest on Sam's curls for a moment as he began to lose the battle to stay awake. 'Happy Birthday Sammy.' He whispered, 'I'm sorry I wasn't here.'
'Dad?' Sam mumbled eyes still closed. 'How far is it on foot to France?'
John shot Dean a confused glance before he took his hand away with a small smile, 'far enough Sammy…it's far enough.'
'Uhhhh I hate you. Why would you do this to me?' Sam whined the next morning, staring at the plate before him in horror. 'There's no way I can eat all this I'll be sick. I feel horrible.'
'You do NOT hate us Sammy, and this is the best hangover cure I know.' John offered pointing at the fry up that adorned the plate causing his son such terror. 'Be grateful I didn't make you run laps around the reception.'
Dean smiled at the both of them. He figured part of his Dad wanted Sam to learn a lesson from this but the other part just wanted to make it up to him for missing his birthday by spending breakfast time together at the diner.
'I'm never talking to you again for bringing me there.' The youngest Winchester shot mournfully at his big brother.
'Oh ho ho, excuse me dude, no one forced you to drink all that tequila.'
'Yes, yes they did, Sunny, Sunny forced me.'
'Sunny?' John queried.
'What did you say to her anyway?' Dean asked ignoring his Dad, 'she was angry enough to leave a mark.'
Sam shook his head, 'Say to her?' Then his face paled to the color of chalk as he remembered, 'Oh no…oh god…kill me now.'
'What? What did you say?'
Sam blushed horribly making his pale, morning after complexion seem all the whiter. 'I sort of maybe told her I didn't know where she'd been and you told me not to touch a woman if I didn't know where she'd been…'
Dean snorted coffee out of his nose. And John turned a piercing gaze on his baby.
'There was a woman after you Sammy?'
'Just the bartender Dad.'
'And just how old was this lady?'
'I don't know mid 20's I suppose.'
'Sam you're sixteen years old, do I have to remind you…'
'No Dad.' Sam muttered with a humiliated sigh, 'rest assured no one will ever want me around here again after last nights performance.'
'Speak for yourself Elvis.' Dean sniggered into his coffee.
'Elvis?' Their Dad asked, amused. 'Why do I get the feeling there's some things you boys aren't telling me about your little adventure last night.'
Sam and Dean were saved when a loud shout erupted from the table next to them.
John jumped hand tightening on the knife in his belt as he spun in his seat to see what kind of possession was going on.
Ok…so it looked like an old lady. Didn't mean she wasn't possessed. John jumped up and stood infront of the booth shielding his sons.
To his surprise however the lady looked passed him towards Sam. 'Christo? I thought it was you. I was at the bar last night. You were very entertaining young man. Very sad you never got to finish your song.' She threw that last part with a pointed look at Dean. 'We'd love to hear you again sometime.'
Sam blushed bright red and mumbled a thank you as she headed back to her seat.
He looked around the table at his family. Dean was rocking back and forth in uncontrollable laughter, John was frowning in confusion and annoyance at the little scare.
Sam flung his head into his hands with an oath, 'remind me to never turn sixteen again.'