A/N - This is a sequel to 'Runt of the Litter' because hell hound puppies are just too much cuteness to stop at one.
Anything but Bucky
"Did I say no? I meant hell no," Dean turns his attention from the road to give his brother his best glare of promised death and intimidation.
"Bucky is a perfectly fine name and he's my dog," Sam sulks at him and Dean resists the urge to reach over and slap his brother upside the head.
"Ow! Fuck you asshole!"
Okay, so he hadn't resisted that hard. But fuck, Bucky? There were times he thought Sam was some sort of changeling because…Bucky?
"It's a good dog name," Sam continues to argue as he looks over his shoulder to the back seat of the Impala where 'no way in hell is my name Bucky' sits, eyeing them both with bright eyed interest, his furry black head cocked as if he can tell they're talking about him. When Sam reaches back with a long arm to ruffle the hell hound puppy's head, the little guy swipes at Sam's hand with an enthusiastic lick of his velvet rough tongue and utters a soft and happy 'yip' as his stubby tail begins to beat a steady whump against the back cushion.
Dean, meanwhile, looks at the reflection of the mutt in his rearview mirror and feels a scowl moving in. What the hell had he been thinking, letting Sammy talk him into keeping the dog? Okay, sure, he was a cute little ball of fur, black with a brown splotch on his nose, spiky tufts of hair sticking out on his head like he was the spokesdog for hair gel, surprisingly innocent eyes (seeing as how they were a cheery hellfire red). But come on, he was a freakin' hell hound; there was just no getting around that. Maybe, by some weird mutant genetic quirk, he wasn't all insane, growly and evil like his brother and sisters had been before he and Sam had shish kabobbed 'em. But there's no reason to think the mutt won't grow into his evil heritage eventually. Odds are, he'll go to sleep one night all cute and 'yip, yip' and wake up the next morning trying to go all Cujo on their asses. And if the hell mutt even comes close to reaching the mass of his mother he's going to top out at a petite 200 lbs. or so of glowing red-eyed, fang-filled monster.
Dean shakes his head. Hell, he knows exactly why he gave in. Because his baby 'I see the good in everything' brother had fallen head over ass in love with the ball of fur and Dean hadn't been able to resist the smile of pure fucking sunshine beaming out of Sammy's face. The uncomplicated happiness his little brother had shown as he'd held the puppy in his arms had slipped past all of Dean's emo defenses with the force of a hob-goblin's kick as he'd realized just how long it had been since he'd seen Sammy smile like that. The kid had been through so much and Dean missed seeing Sammy happy, dammit.
But Bucky? Hell no. He and his Impala have standards.
Sam resists the urge to grin. His evil—okay not so much evil as devious—plan was so working. Okay, not so much even devious as 'having fun fucking with Dean'. He knows the name he wants to give his little hell hound and it sure isn't Bucky but he's been entertaining himself for the past hour throwing out names like 'Max' or 'Ruffles' or, heh, 'Bucky' just to see Dean get all worked up about them. He figures by the time he offers up his actual choice Dean will latch onto it with relief and stop offering his own suggestions like 'Metalhead', 'Death' and 'Cujo.'
He opens his mouth to see what Dean thinks about the name Scout when his fine tuned sense of smell picks up an acrid odor. Frowning, puzzled, he casts a wary look at his brother and then backwards and blanches. Oh, hell.
"Uh, Dean," he utters cautiously as the aroma of smoke and underlying acid grows stronger and he sees his brother starting to frown as well.
"Sam, do you smell something…?" Dean starts looking around in alarm.
"Dean, just pull over and don't freak okay, just…" shit, too late. Shit, shit, shit.
The scream of anguish and horror that erupts from his brother would be perfectly appropriate for a man seeing his entire planet wiped out by an apocalypse. For Dean, it's pretty much the same thing.
"My car! My car's on freaking fire!" The Impala swerves sharply, tossing Sam back against the front seat, as Dean pulls it over to the side of the highway with a sharp screech of tires accompanied by Dean's litany of "fuck, going to kill that dog, my poor baby, fuck!"
Before the engine even stops running, Sam's out of the car, wrenching the back door open and pulling the hell hound puppy out of the backseat and into his protective embrace before Dean can strangle it with his bare, wrathful hands. The puppy, whimpering at the furious vibes and swearing coming from the human Dean, curls up into the human Sam's sheltering embrace and starts to whimper.
Dean shoots dog and man a vicious snarl accompanied by a glare of promised death and dismemberment. "That dog is dead Sammy! DEAD! I will skin its little carcass and use it to polish my boots!" Dean continues to swear sulfurously as he grabs a paper towel from his stash and begins frantically swiping at the smoking back seat.
"He didn't mean to do it Dean," Sam says, his tone placating. He backs up a cautious step when his brother sends him another glare which, if his brother had super freaky powers, would incinerate man and dog on the spot. "He's just a puppy," Sam tries again, careful to keep his mouth from twitching even a little bit at Dean's anguished expression because he's not altogether sure his brother won't actually pull out a gun and shoot him if he cracks a smile right now.
"That bitch peed acid on my back seat!" The words are somewhere between snarled fury and mortal anguish and there is way more than a glint of homicide in Dean's face as he alternates between watching the smoldering hole in his once pristine leather seats and shooting killing death glares at Sam's trying really hard to look innocent face.
"Okay, Dean, look, you've got to remember he's just a puppy," Sam repeats, backing away another cautious step. If he has to run he's in trouble because while Sam's faster, Dean's a quick son of a bitch too and currently unburdened with a cowering hell hound puppy. "It's not his fault he's a hell hound with apparently, some, uh, special properties in his pee." Oh God, don't laugh, don't laugh, don't…his mouth involuntarily twitches. Shit, maybe Dean won't notice.
"Are you smiling?" Dean asks incredulously, because Dean notices God Damn everything. "Are you smiling about this supreme, this…this tragic insult to my baby?" And suddenly there's a knife in Dean's hand, the lowering sun glinting off its honed and polished blade and Sam definitely doesn't feel like smiling even a little bit.
"I'll give that punk ass some special properties," Dean mutters darkly as he starts moving around the car towards them, graceful as only a predator can be.
"Dean! Dude! Put the knife away," Sam orders firmly, resisting the urge to back peddle furiously because Dean's not going to hurt him or his little dog. Dean has more control than that, even at his most royally pissed off because, underneath the good ole boy charm and horn dog exterior, his older brother has more patience and control than anyone Sam has ever known. And Dean would never, ever hurt him. This he knows down to his soul.
That being said, Sam still has to work to keep himself from turning rabbit as his brother gets closer because well, there's hurt and then there's hurt.
He watches Dean's wrath filled eyes and, going with instinct, makes a split second decision; one he really, really hopes he won't regret. Before Sam can second guess himself he thrusts his arms out and deposits the hell hound puppy into Dean's arms which come up automatically to cradle the cowering figure. Doing a swift turn Sam starts walking away, the picture of Dean's startled face in the forefront of his mind.
"Sam, the fuck?" Dean calls out after him, tone now furious and bewildered. Sam does a quick spin on his heels and walking backwards tells his brother very seriously, "this is between you and the dog, bro," spins around again and melts into the woods bordering the road.
Dean looks down at the cowering, shivering, very freaked out puppy in his arms and starts to swear softly. He transfers the puppy to one arm and smoothly returns the knife to its sheath because as pissed off as he is—and he is very pissed off—he knows he's not going to hurt something as helpless and afraid as the puppy. And Sam knows it too, the frigging scarecrow rat bastard.
Sighing, he cradles the shivering puppy in his two hands and lifts it to up to his face. "We need to have a discussion about what is and is not okay to do in a man's car, little dude," he says sternly.
The puppy whimpers and he feels something involuntarily soften inside of him.
Sam spends the next fifteen minutes or so trying not to freak. He's sure Dean won't hurt the dog. Dean has spent his entire life being a protector and shield for the innocent and the weak; it comes straight from his soul like he's some sort of paladin of justice living in an old fairy tale. But that doesn't keep Sam from wanting to bolt back to the car and just make absolutely sure. He'd really been tempted to stop and hide within visual distance but Dean would have sensed him. Dean's too good a hunter and has a sixth sense about Sam anyway, honed from years of being a way overprotective big brother. So Sam makes himself keep walking until he's disappeared into the cheerful night woods. He doesn't go out of yelling distance of course because, hey, the woods were probably cheerful for Little Red Riding Hood and Hansel and Gretel right up until they ran into their respective nemesis. But no boggles or wolves or children-eating witches are out tonight and Sam spends a quiet patch of time by himself with nothing to distract him from the scenes he's picturing in his overactive mind. They unspool in minishort movie bursts ranging from Dean deciding to make a seat cover from the puppy's hide to the puppy transforming into a full grown evil hell hound over the span of five seconds and eating Dean up whole because…well, he is a hell hound. Finally, when Sam's watch assures him it's been twenty minutes—even though it feels like at least an hour—he turns around and heads back, his own hunter's instincts guiding him steadily back to brother and dog.
He emerges from the woods and sees his brother leaning against the car, arms still cradling the puppy and the tension he's been carrying around relaxes a little, even though, really, he knew Dean wouldn't hurt the puppy. He strolls up to them, trying to look casual and unconcerned although, from the smirk on Dean's face, he's not fooling anybody. Well, maybe the puppy.
"So?" he finally asks when Dean remains uncharacteristically silent.
"We had a talk about the importance of not using the Impala as a porta potty," Dean answers, tone cool and sarcastic and Sam relaxes the rest of the way because Dean's not mad anymore. He smiles at his older brother and reaches out a hand to pat the puppy on the head. The puppy yips at him and enthusiastically licks his hand apparently having decided that the Dean person is not so scary after all but that he still loves the Sam person best.
As they get back in the car—after making sure that the dog pees first—Sam looks across at his brother and says, "okay, I really do have the perfect name for our dog." Because somewhere during their exciting little side excursion the puppy had become theirs and not his.
Dean shoots Sam a glare. "Forget it bitch, I'm naming the dog. You lost your chance when you started tossing out names like Bucky," the name is a sneer.
Sam rolls his eyes and opens his mouth to argue but Dean cuts him off with a firm look.
"His name's Spike and that's final."
Sam realized his mouth is hanging open and snaps it shut. Maybe he's not the only one with freaky mental powers after all. "How do you figure?" he asks cautiously.
Dean looks across at him and shrugs. "He looks like a Spike okay? With you know the whole," he vaguely waves his hand at the top of Spike's head. "What? You got a problem with it?" his look is challenging now.
Sam bites back a grin and shrugs back. "I can live with Spike." Actually, he's a little irritated that he didn't get the chance to bring up Spike's name first but, hey, if his brother is invested enough to demand to name their dog—Metal Head and Cujo was just Dean fucking around—then they're over the hurdle of Dean accepting him into their pack, so to speak.
He looks back at Spike and smiles, content, just in time to see the newly christened Spike burp up a little wisp of smoke.
Blinking in surprise, Sam thinks he'll just keep this information to himself for now.