OK, I've never written a one-shot before. I don't usually do this angst stuff. But Devil's Trap inspired me.

I daresay there are already hundreds of these things floating around Fan Fiction Land, but I had to get this out of my system, and I've only just managed to see Salvation and Devil's Trap! (What an idiot booking a holiday for the last two weeks of the season - I finally make it to California, and I'm in a hotel that doesn't have the WB!)

So apologies if you've read it all before. I haven't. I've deliberately not read any post-Devil's Trap fan fiction yet, as I have a tendency to read things and then regurgitate them thinking they were something I thought of and not something someone else thought of. So if this is similar to anything else, apologies: I really haven't ripped anyone off, honest! Sorry if it sucks!

Spoilers: Devil's Trap, obviously!
Language / Violence: None.

Blood, Metal and What Comes After

The last thing I saw was the light.

No tunnel. No loved ones standing waiting to greet me with open arms. No pearly gates or fiery furnace.

Which I guess is a good thing.

So maybe I'm not dead after all.

Thing is, I don't know what I am. And I don't know where I am. It's dark and I'm cold and I can't move. But nothing hurts.

Nothing physical, anyway.

Sammy said I'd lost a lot of blood. Maybe I'm in shock. Or delirious. Maybe I dreamed the light. And the noise. God, that noise. What the hell was that?

Metal on metal.

Then silence.

And darkness.

And blood.

I remember blood. Not on me, although there was plenty of that too. No. On Sammy. That's where I saw it. He was bleeding and unconscious. He was hurt real bad. I need to get him some help. I'm supposed to take care of him and he's hurt and I need to help him but I don't know how.

If only I could figure out where I am.

I remember the Demon.

The Demon had Dad's face. But not his eyes. Yellow. Cold and fiery.

And he hurt me.

Not with the blood. Or the fear. Not even with the torture, I can take pain. That's what we do, we Winchesters: Roll with the punches and move on to the next job. I guess pain's just part of the deal.

No, how this Demon hurt me was worse. He hurt me with words.

I'm not good with words. I don't say enough of them, and when I say them they aren't really what I feel most of the time. I don't do I love you or I need you or Don't leave. I make a joke and I laugh and I move on to the next job.

Because that's what we Winchesters do.

I don't know if the Demon was lying. Demons lie. I know that. They get inside your head and twist your thoughts around their claws until you don't know real from unreal; right from wrong; up from down. Dad from Demon.

I don't know if it was true what he said.

And I don't know if it was the Demon or my Dad saying it.

Not the part about Sam being his favourite. I've always known that.

I don't know if it was the thing with the Shtriga. I always said Dad looked at me different after that. Like I'd failed him in the worst way I possibly could: I'd failed in my job, and my job was to protect Sammy.

Sometimes I think playing the Good Little Soldier wasn't what he wanted. I always, always tried to do what he wanted. But once I made myself into what I thought he wanted me to be, I don't think he could see me any more. Like I was just an extension of himself, an extra couple of hands; an extra pair of eyes. Someone to hold the Holy Water or the axe or sometimes just the flashlight.

That was okay. I didn't mind that. As long as it was what he wanted me to do. I just wanted to do what he wanted me to do so he wouldn't leave.

But he left me anyway.

Just like Sammy left.

Sammy stood up to him like I never could.

And Dad saw him. Dad noticed him.

And I think Dad was proud of him.

I'm not stupid. I may not be college-smart like Sam, but I could see it, even if Dad and Sam couldn't.

I remember once when I was a kid. Mom had been gone a while, and Dad was sitting with Sammy on his knee trying to get him to eat mushed up bananas. Sammy really hated that stuff. Used to spit it everywhere. And you couldn't do the 'here comes the aeroplane' thing 'cause he'd just look at you like you were mental. Even when he was a baby, I swear Sam was middle-aged.

Dad had given up trying to feed him, anyway, and I told him to let me try. He gave me the spoon, I looked at Sammy, and I just said "Sammy, if you don't eat this stuff you won't get big and strong like me, and then who am I going to play catch with?" And he laughed at me. That big stupid baby laugh he had.

But he ate the bananas.

And Dad just looked at me and he had this real weird look on his face.

Then he told me I reminded him of my Mom.

Somehow, I don't think he meant that in a good way.

See, when I lost my Mom, I think somehow I lost my Dad too.

I still had some of my Mom in me. She taught me numbers. She taught me my ABC. She taught me what was funny, what was sad, what was right and what was wrong. She even tried to teach me to sing. It might not have been Blue Oyster Cult or Metallica, but I remember singing when I was little.

She never got to teach Sammy all that.

So Sammy was all Dad's. Made in his image, but totally different somehow. How was I going to compete with that?

I tried, believe me. The Good Son. The Good Soldier. I tried to be more like him, like Sammy was.

I didn't have fights with him. I didn't disagree with him. I didn't scream at him like Sam did. I never stood up to him, got in his face and told him what I really thought, how I really felt. I don't do words. I don't say what I mean. I don't say what I feel.

So he didn't see me. Not like he saw Sam.

And so I did the only thing I could.

The Winchester Thing.

I thought I hunted because I wanted revenge, just like Dad did. Just like Sam did after Jessica. I thought I was like them, and wanted what they wanted.

But now I'm not so sure.

I didn't hunt evil side by side with my Dad and my kid brother for the Hell of it. For the blood of it. For some shining noble common good.

Not even to get back at the bastards that took my Mom away.

No, I fought side by side with my Dad and my brother just to be with my Dad and my brother. Just to keep us together as a family.

What was left of our family, anyway.

I'm no knight in shining armour. I'm no superhero.

I'm just a scared kid who doesn't want to be alone.

I'm not sure when I realised that. Maybe spending these last few months with Sam again. Maybe spending these last few months away from Dad.

Whenever it happened, the Demon knew.

And those were the words that hurt me the most.

They don't need me. They're not in this to be with me, to be a family, not like I am. I need them more than they need me and that's how it's always going to be. Dad had his crusade; Sam had college. What did I have?

I didn't even have me. I just had them.

When I went to Stanford to get Sam, to get him to help me find Dad, I meant what I said. I really couldn't do it alone.

But I don't think I was just talking about finding Dad.

I can't do this alone. Any of it. I don't want to be alone. I don't want to lose my family. I don't want to lose any more of my family.

And I'm losing my family right now.

I'm in the car.

A truck hit us.

Dad's hurt. Sammy's hurt.

I need to get some help.

But I'm hurt too.

I'm hurt, I'm hurting. I'm more broken than I've ever been but that's not what hurts the most.

I can't help them, and that's what I'm supposed to do.

I don't care about the Demon.

I don't care about the Gun.

I don't care about Dad's crusade or Sam's revenge.

I care about my family. That's all that matters.

I killed for them. I killed two humans for them. Two humans just like Sam.

I killed for them.

And I'm losing them, right here right now.

I don't see the light any more.

I don't see the dark any more.

I've got a job to do and I'm going to do it.

I don't know how.

But I won't let it end like this.

The End

Hope that wasn't too icky or rubbish. Reviews always welcome!