A/N I know I haven't finished Dream, but this little plot bunny grabbed me and wouldn't let go. As for that, I haven't forgotten it, but I've written myself into a corner, and now have to come up with a creative way of getting out! Should be up soon though, hopefully. And now for the good stuff:
Disclaimer – I never usually do these – okay, so, they're not mine
Warnings – character death, language, some violence
This is my first ever one-shot. It came to me whilst listening to Bryan Adams Everything I Do (I Do For you)
Read, review, enjoy!
The motels were always the same. Same bare, scratchy carpet. Same dim lights and grimy curtains. Same dingy sheets. Same ugly coverlets on the bed. This one was an orange and brown paisley, a 70s throwback that should have died with that decade.
Always the same. But staring at the lurid pattern now, Dean knew he would remember this motel for the rest of his life.
Dean awoke as he often did, strangled in his sheets with wild hair and bleary eyes. Blinking fuzzily, he awkwardly attempted to disentangle himself as he glanced at the bed beside his. Sam was awake, resting his chin on his knees as he stared across at the blank wall opposite. His expression was unreadable and Dean knew that Sam had had a nightmare.
Still struggling unsuccessfully to free himself, Dean wondered when this would become routine, the interrupted nights and moody days, and grunted in irritation, partly because he was still trapped in his sheets and partly because he would be stuck spending the morning attempting to prise whatever it was out of Sam's stubborn mouth.
Completely frozen. Those were the words running through Dean's head as he sat on the bed, unmoving. You are completely frozen. Immobilised. Frozen. Like a statue. Statues don't have emotions. Statues don't feel.
Statues don't have to read the letter clutched tightly in their right hands.
They just stare at ugly orange-and-brown bedspreads and don't think, don't feel, because if he feels that will open the floodgates and make today real –
Shut up! Don't think…
It's too late. It's all coming back to him in flashes. Him and Sam. Breakfast. Sam is quiet, broody.
Driving and laughing at Sam's disgust in his choice of music.
Lunch in a diner. Fries and a burger and for once, Sam really seems to enjoy himself, ribbing dean like he hasn't in, oh ages, and eating every scrap on his plate.
Don't think, don't think.
Afternoon. Sam excuses himself for a couple of hours and Dean wonders where his head's at, but Sam comes back with a soft look on his face Dean hasn't seen before, a peaceful look, and Dean feels somehow happy, relieved and uneasy at the same time.
No, no, no.
The night hunt…
Dean buries his face in his hands, the envelope crumpling a little against his forehead and interrupting the silence with its baleful rustle.
He doesn't move.
But the letter waits for him, and as the minutes pass and nothing changes, Dean finally can't bear the silence and lifts his head, looks at it.
The front says, Dean, in Sam's girly handwriting. Dean's eyes burn, but he doesn't let it out. Just stares.
And Dean could never deny Sammy anything, so he rips the letter open and feels, not for the first time tonight, that he's going to be sick. But he forces it down, unfurls the single page and Sam speaks to him.
I'm probably going to feel a total ass later for writing this, but I guess nothing beats being prepared.
Shit, I started this and I don't even know what the hell I'm saying.
But, well, the thing is – if tonight goes down like I think it will, I have to be able to explain to you.
I had a dream last night. No, not a dream – a warning. A warning I can't ignore. And I have to decide what I'm going to do about it.
You know, I've always considered these visions a curse. I couldn't save jess. They're painful. They hurt – in more ways than just physical. And I fear what they mean, could mean, about me. Most of the time, I hate them. But now – I am grateful. I've been given a chance many people don't get. To stop what will become. And if I can stop what I saw last night in my dream, I will have been blessed by this gift.
Dean, I saw you die.
So there it is. And now, I have a choice. What do I do? I debated whether to tell you, but I don't know whether it will happen tonight, tomorrow or in ten years time. All I saw was the light fade away from your face, and there was nothing I could do.
But if I don't tell you now, there will be. Something I can do, I mean. Something you would never let me do, if you knew. Maybe I can stop it. Maybe neither of us has to… well, you never know. I'll try. Shit, this is all messed up.
I'm sorry, Dean. I'm just so, so sorry, more than I could ever express. For leaving you and Dad to go to college. And for doing what I am about to do now. To take the coward's way out.
You see, I'm not strong – I couldn't do it. Losing jess, losing you? I never really had Dad at all, not the way you did. I love him, make sure you tell him that, but after this, well, I can see the two of you together better than I can see dad and me. You always were the glue that held our family together, no matter how hard I tried to break it apart.
What I'm trying to say is – my whole life you've done everything for me. Brought me up, protected me, been my one constant, my touchstone. I never existed without you in my life.
So let me do this for you now.
There was Dean without Sam once.
This is my gift. There are no strings attached. You don't have to go save the world to validate it. Just be yourself, be Dean. You can even drink yourself to death if you want to (although you'd better not, jerk). I hope you live your life, meet all the pretty girls you want and get the joy you always seem to get, out of even the smallest things. I always envied and loved that about you. The joy you took from life's minutiae, as well as the other, bigger stuff. I hope you will always have that joy.
Don't hate me for doing this to you, and know that I'm sorry. But I have to.
Thanks for being my brother.
Dean roared in anger and pain, bellowing his loss to the empty room as he smashed the spindly wooden chair beside him to pieces against the wall and ripped the ugly covers off the beds so he wouldn't have to see them, tearing the room apart whilst in his head it played over and over.
Sam pushing him aside
Sam screaming as the wooden stake meant for Dean plunged into his heart, held by a vindictive vampire who shrieked with laughter that was abruptly cut off as Dean staked it from behind.
Holding a trembling, dying Sam, and asking him, begging him, to tell him why.
Sam had smiled, and the blood bubbled up from between his lips as he choked out "You're… my brother. I'd die… for you… remember?"
And now Dean lay huddled on the floor, sobbing like he had never done in his entire twenty-six years, and all he could think of was, "but you were my joy!"
But hours later the sobs subsided. Tears had changed nothing. Dean was still alone.
A day passed, and Dean didn't move from the floor. Then two days, and his father arrived. Expressionless, Dean held him as he cried, but gave nothing of himself. He had nothing left.
One more day, and they took Sam home to Kansas. There were a few people at the funeral, Jess's parents and Stanford friends, but Dean noticed none of them. They all left afterwards, and as John talked with the priest, Dean was left alone with Sam.
"I don't know about this whole gift thing, Sammy".
There was silence and Dean leaned against the headstone, surveying the surrounding trees. It was peaceful. He hadn't been in this spot, beside his mother, in twenty years.
He sighed, and patted the headstone.
He wasn't sure about the life stretching about before him. But it was Sam's gift, and he would cherish it.
P.S. I read the line "Dean without Sam" in someone else's fic. I couldn't find which it was, but credit where credit's due, I borrowed from a great writer!