Disclaimer: Anything related to the awesome Winchester family or the ceiling demon belongs entirely to Eric Kripke and whoever else holds the rights to Supernatural; I don't lay claim to it.
Summary: Mary Winchester gave birth to Sam on May 2. She was murdered six months later. This is her story: a collection of snapshots depicting the time between Sam's conception and her untimely death, through the eyes of the most mysterious Winchester. One Shot.
FIRE OF UNKNOWN ORIGIN
By Spectral Scribe
As I lay in bed with John that night, my heart still fluttering as we slowed our breaths in unison, I prayed for another child. Dean was my sweet baby boy, but he'd been asking if he would get a little brother or sister ever since he found out that some of his friends had younger siblings. My head was resting against John's broad shoulder—golden locks spilling out around our faces—and I turned my eyes up to meet his closed ones at an extreme angle.
"Hmm?" came the mumbled, half-dozing reply.
I stroked his chest with my free hand and curled further into his side. "Do you want a boy or a girl?"
His eyes flew open. "I knew it. This wasn't thanks-for-the-great-evening-out sex, this was I-want-another-kid sex."
My lips curled up affectionately. "We have been talking about it… do you not want another child? A little brother or sister for Dean?"
John wrapped his left arm around my shoulder and leaned over to kiss the top of my head. "Of course I do, Mary. I was just teasing."
"I know," I replied with a contented smile, warm drowsiness slipping over me. "So which do you want? A boy or a girl?"
I blinked as the voiceless words rose through the shadows of the room like a harsh breeze. Somewhere above my head, John was talking as if he hadn't heard it.
"—little brother would be nice for Dean, but I kind of want a girl."
I was barely listening to him, though, as I strained to make out where it had come from. The suggestion had been so sure, so adamant, and a chill raced through me. I shivered.
"You cold, sweetie?" John asked, pulling the blanket higher over our bodies. I nodded into his shoulder while my stomach roiled as if something were messing around with my insides. I took a few deep breaths and buried my face half into John and half into the pillow behind me, blocking everything out but the scent of my husband and the churning in my stomach until sleep overcame me.
—blood fire darkness ceiling yelloweyes—
I woke in a cold sweat, unaware that I'd even fallen asleep while waiting for John to get home. I sat up at the kitchen table, stretching my back and blinking the residue of a nightmare from my mind. The images were already drifting away like water running through a creek.
The front door slammed shut, and I nearly jumped out of my skin. Standing up quickly, I snatched the long, thin parcel from the table with a nervously twittering heart and hurried to the front hall where John was removing his shoes. I stood in the hall for a moment, breathing in the rough stubble on his strong chin and the warmth in his brown eyes. Stepping lightly over to him, I planted a kiss on his cheek—scratchy, I needed to tell him to shave, but that wasn't important right now—and handed him the box.
"What's this?" he asked, turning it over in his hands.
I grinned a mixture of excitement and anxiety. What if he didn't want another kid? What if he didn't want to deal with my pregnancy again? Whatifwhatifwhatif…?
He pulled off the top of the box, and a smile lit up his face as he extracted the rose. I nodded towards the box as he looked up again, puzzled, and his eyes descended once more to the gift—and then widened significantly. Setting down the rose, he lifted up the pregnancy test with careful hands.
I nodded. "I am."
He stepped over to me, and I was still unsure of how he would take it. Whatifwhatifwhatif…? But my doubts evaporated as he pulled me into a kiss. When we drew away, he asked, "Where's Dean?"
My grin turned mischievous. "Already asleep. I figured we could celebrate tonight and tell him in the morning."
John took my hand and led me away from the front hall. "Sounds like a plan to me."
I tried to ignore the dark chuckle that rose like a breathless whisper in the hall.
As another bout of nausea rolled over me, I bent closer to the sink and squeezed my eyes shut. Pregnancy could be such fun. It had been the same with Dean. Morning's were something of a bitch, but the rest of the day went smoothly. As long as nobody was eating fish, that is. The mere scent of it drove me off to the bathroom again.
The little voice broke me from my thoughts, and my eyes snapped open, now staring straight into the mirror above the sink. My face looked a bit pale, but that's not what held my attention as the reflection came into focus. It was the vague silhouette of a dark figure looming in the open doorway, and through the shadows of its face I could see two blazing yellow eyes and feel the unseen smirk of victory.
My heart took a beat so hard that pain rippled through my chest, and I whipped around in panic. But all I saw was my little Dean standing in the doorway in his batman pajamas, sleepy-eyed and messy-haired.
Schooling my residual panic, I forced a wan smile onto my face and could feel the lines around my mouth tighten. "Hey, Dean. What do you need, kiddo?"
Dean blinked up at me. "Are you sick, Mommy?"
I could feel my forced smile stuck in place, not quite reaching my eyes. "A little. But I'll be okay." And then I saw the honey-colored syrup spread over his hands, and my smile widened at the thought of John following up on his promise to make pancakes. "Want to wash your hands, buddy?"
Dean nodded, and I pulled the box in front of the sink so that he could reach.
"Need a hand up there?" I offered, already instinctively preparing to bend over and lift my eldest onto the box.
But Dean shook his head with an exasperated eye-roll. "I can do it. I'm not two anymore!"
I couldn't help but smile wider as he scrambled on top of the box, nearly falling over himself several times; he already had an independent streak a mile wide. "Oh, that's right. You're my big three-year-old now, huh?" I replied playfully, standing behind him and watching his face in the mirror. Dean had to stand on his tip-toes and lean all the way over the sink to turn it on, and then he stuck his hands under the running water and squirted a too-big glob of soap all over them. "So, are you excited for the new baby?"
I didn't know where the thought came from, but it occurred to me that Dean hadn't talked much about my having another child. I worried he had changed his mind about a younger sibling. But my little buddy nodded vigorously, getting soap everywhere. "Is it gonna be a little brother or little sister?"
The chill ran through me as the voiceless words drifted through the room like shadows.
"I don't know, sweetie. We'll have to wait and find out."
Dean frowned slightly, and looked up at me through the mirror. "I think it's gonna be a boy."
My heart panged again, and I fought to control the hitch in my breath. "W-why do you say that?" I asked, keeping my voice carefully nonchalant.
He shrugged as though he couldn't quite place it. "I dunno. I just think it is."
Leaning carefully over Dean, I turned off the sink and helped him dry his hands. "If it's a boy, what should I name him?" I tried to steer the conversation to more comfortable territory.
Dean shrugged again, in that cute way where his shoulders hunched up nearly to his ears in an exaggerated expression. "I dunno. How about Frankenstein?"
Grabbing him under the arms, I swung him off the box and onto the floor before leaning down as much as my enlarged stomach would allow me so that my face was close to Dean's. "I'll think about it." Patting him on the head, I turned back to the mirror. Dean was already scurrying out the door, probably to propose his name idea to John or to see if there were any more pancakes left.
I stared into the mirror for a long time and wondered what was happening to me.
"Oh, John. Look at this!" I couldn't help but gush—and believe me, I'm not usually a gushing type—as I held up the piece of cloth. But this article of clothing was perhaps the most darling thing I'd ever seen, with its matching baby-blue booties and bib. I'd always used to scorn people for getting mushy over something as silly as a tiny outfit, but pregnancy seemed to bring out something warm and melted-marshmallowy within me.
"Mary," John sighed, and I could tell he was at his wits' end. "It's a little early to be picking out clothes. And you don't even know if it's going to be a boy yet."
Rolling my eyes, I replaced the miniature hanger and returned to John with the racecar cart that Dean was pretending to drive. "It's going to be a boy." I didn't even know when I'd become so adamant and closed-off about the topic, but I could tell it was driving John up the wall. But how could I explain? The shadow-thing that keeps popping up in my dreams told me so, and I think Dean might sense its presence too? It was bull, and I knew he wouldn't believe it.
John, apparently sensing the tension, raised his hands in a conciliatory manner before putting them back down on the cart full of random odds and ends. "Okay, but all I'm saying is that you could go to the doctor and have him tell you for sure if it's going to be a boy or girl before you start decorating the kid's room all blue."
A spark of indignation rose in me, and I didn't even know where it came from. "First of all, even if it's a girl, girls can like blue just the same. Better blue than Pepto-Bismol pink. And second, it's going to be a boy. End of discussion."
"Vrrrrrooooooom!" Dean shouted, wonderfully oblivious, at the plastic wheel of the cart.
John's irritation was blatant in the strain on his firm jaw and around his bright eyes. "I just don't understand why you're being so short with me about all of this."
"And I don't understand why you're picking a fight in the middle of a department store," I hissed back in a clipped voice, having neither the energy nor the willpower to deal with my husband's stubbornness. I loved the man to death, but he was also the most stubborn ass I'd ever met. Men.
John scrubbed a hand over his face, rubbing absently at the stubble on his chin. He needed to shave. "I'm not. I just want you to talk to me."
Talk to him about…? Shadow creatures? Yellow eyes? Dreams with screaming and fire and blood? And a voice telling me He's mine, he's mine, he's mine…? A sense of dread closing in around me, like something was going to happen, like I was a pawn in some macabre game? Oh, sure. I'd talk to him about that. Perhaps the day our goldfish sprouted wings and flew off to join the circus.
But I swallowed all of those thoughts and stepped closer to John, wrapping my arms around his shoulders. Leaning forward, I planted a lingering kiss onto his whiskery lips, pulling away with a ghost of a smile. "We'll talk later, okay? I think Dean's getting antsy."
We both glanced over at Dean in the cart, whose racecar noises were getting steadily louder and more insistent. "Vrrrrrooooooom! Screeeeech! Screeeeech! Vrrrrrooooooom! Honk honk!" At that point, he beat wildly at the plastic steering wheel, in the general direction of where a horn usually was. I suppressed a chuckle at the indignant looks that an elderly woman was currently throwing him as she hustled past to escape the noise.
"Hey, Dean. You want to steer us to checkout?" I called over to him. The noises stopped, and he nodded very seriously at the job I had just given him. Putting his hands back on the wheel, Dean turned it to the right, and John came up behind the cart and pushed it to the right.
When he noticed that I wasn't following, John stopped and craned his neck around. My eyes pulled away from his and drifted back towards the small section of baby stuff we'd just past. "Do you want to buy the outfit?" he asked, his eyes following mine.
The suggestion was a call for truce in the boy-girl argument, and I took it as such. Placing a hand to my round belly, I shook my head. "I suppose there will be time for buying clothes later. We should think about names first."
"Frankenstein!" Dean piped up from the cart where he was busy pulling the wheel back and forth like a maniac.
I looked at John, and I could see the amused twinkle in his eye as we both returned to the cart. "You know," he mumbled to me as Dean rolled the wheel all the way to the left and then back to the right, "it's a damn good thing he won't get to legally drive for thirteen more years."
"How's the mac and cheese?" I asked, my voice clearly tinged with hope and worry. I wasn't much of a cook, to say the least, but I'd decided that to improve, I should start practicing with small dishes— something simple, like mac and cheese. It looked all right to me. And it wasn't even from a box.
"Yummy," Dean replied matter-of-factly, shoveling another forkful of the orange noodles into his mouth.
John smiled at me encouragingly. "It's good, Mary."
"You know, John, I've been thinking," I began in one breath, my nervousness stemming from more than the mere issue of my shoddy cooking. "Maybe after the baby comes, I could… go back to school."
"What?" John choked on a noodle. "Where is this coming from?"
I bit my lip and picked at my uneaten pasta. "Well, I was taking that year off when we married, and then we had Dean, and I never got around to graduating. I thought I could go back… do something with my life."
Dean was busy finishing off the last of his mac and cheese, only perking up when he heard his name come into the mix. John patted him on the shoulder and gave a whiskery smile; he hadn't shaved that day. "Hey, sport. Why don't you go play with those toy soldiers that you got for Christmas?"
Happily, the three-year-old tumbled out of his seat (reassuring us that he could do it himself) and hurried off to find the plastic green men. John turned back to me, his face a mask of seriousness and his eyes both thoughtful and severe. "Don't you think it'll be difficult to go back to school with a baby around? I mean, you remember how it was with Dean. Always up in the middle of the night, changing diapers, getting bottles, never sleeping… juggling that and college work? I don't know."
A sudden urge to explain myself rose within me, fiery and fierce. "I know, but I thought maybe after things had calmed down. And we could get a babysitter, and… I just—I want there to be something more."
"More than what? Than family? I thought that was important to you."
Frustration now mingled with my need for explanation. "It is, it is. I love you all, and you know I would be lost without you and Dean. But I just don't want to watch him and the new baby grow up and stop needing me, because then what will I do? My job will be over. I'll be some old shut-in learning how to knit." My voice became strangled with dismal future that I saw ahead of me, but somehow even more so with the thought that I wouldn't get to have that future, that time was running out… and I had no idea where this feeling was coming from, but it scared the holy hell out of me.
John chuckled, clearly missing my dilemma. "You won't become an old shut-in, trust me. You're too gorgeous for that."
A weight seemed to lessen in my chest. "Oh, shut up, John. I'm being serious here."
"So am I," he replied in a playfully indignant tone. I tried to crack a smile, but it fell flat like a liter of soda left open. "Okay, tell me what's wrong."
"I'm…" —blood fire darkness ceiling yelloweyes— "I'm just worried about the baby," I finished in a whisper.
John's eyebrows came together in a concerned knot. "What are you worried about the baby for?"
The need to explain myself intensified, but I knew that I couldn't. I couldn't, I couldn't, I had no idea what was happening or why. "I don't know," I managed to choke out.
"Mary, just tell me what—"
"I said I don't know. God, John, just fucking leave it alone!" I shouted, and my cheeks were wet before I even felt the stinging in my eyes. The kitchen blurred around me as I stood up, needing to get away, to make sense of it all. But every time I closed my eyes I could see it lurking in the shadowy corners of the rooms with yellow eyes, as though it was watching and waiting until the right time to come out of hiding, to strike with its fire and blood and ceiling and pain…
…and somehow I knew, just knew, that the time it was waiting for had to do with the baby. It had been marked somehow by this thing… or I was going crazy.
John was standing as well, taking cautious steps towards me. "…Mary?"
"I need a drink," I blurted though the salty tears running down my face, and I started for the fridge. But John stepped in my way and grabbed me by the arms.
"You can't, Mary. You're pregnant," he said quietly. I wrapped my arms around his neck as the confusion and terror washed over me, the feeling that time was running out, and I buried my face into the crook of his neck, which smelled of his cologne. The stubble was scratchy on my cheek, but he was warm and protective, and I let myself dissolve into him. "It's all right," he whispered into my ear as he stroked my hair back from my face.
I looked up to see Dean standing in the doorway of the kitchen, a fistful of toy soldiers clutched in his tiny hands and falling onto the floor around him, leaving a trail of plastic figures. I smiled at him, my precious little boy who I wouldn't trade for the world, and sniffed back my tears. "Hey there, champ. We were just talking about Frankenstein."
"Oh. Is he coming soon?" Dean asked hopefully, dropping more soldiers onto the floor.
John smiled and let go of me to help Dean gather the spilled toys. "Soon, kiddo. Real soon."
"John?" I called as I gained control of myself. He looked up at me, his eyes expectant. "Go shave."
John cracked a smile, picked up the rest of the toys, and led Dean into the hall.
And I stood in the kitchen, seeing yellow eyes and wondering what would happen when my second son was born.
"No," Dean mused, bouncing one of his plastic soldiers up and down. "That's stupid. Something nobody did before, like Franken-stan or Franken-sam or—"
"Sam?" I spoke, relishing the word on my tongue.
"Franken-Sam," Dean corrected.
"Sam. Sammy," I said with a smile. "I like it. My little Sammy."
He's mine. Like crinkling, dead leaves. Like a crackling bonfire.
Dean continued to play with his plastic toys, and by now I knew that it was just taunting me.
—blood fire darkness ceiling yelloweyes—
I woke from the nightmare to the feeling of Sammy kicking madly in my belly, and I laid a hand on my stretched skin to try and bring him comfort. It was as though, in some part of his developing mind, he had felt the nightmare as well.
And that scared me more than anything.
I was, and there was sweat pouring down my face, and my hair was matted and tangled in a bun at the back of my head, and pain was ripping through me—but I wasn't pushing that hard. Certainly not hard enough to squeeze a child out of my uterus.
And though he continued chanting at me to push—which I knew to do, thank-you-very-much, as this was my second son—he really didn't need to, because the baby was coming along just fine. Far easier than fine, in fact.
I gave a colossal push, and he slipped out like butter. Closing my eyes as warm tiredness came over me, I rested my head back against the pillow, trying not to think about how it had felt like something had been helping him along, helping me to push him out into the world.
"Congratulations," the doctor announced as my eyes sprang open, John's hand still clutched in my own. "It's a boy."
I ignored the gentle flutter of my heart and took the baby into my arms. He was freshly washed and swathed in a little blanket, and I brought him up to my face and breathed in the scent of new life. His cheeks were pudgy, and his closed eyelids promised big, beautiful eyes.
"Hi, Sam," I whispered to the boy, holding his little face up towards John. He was busy grinning like an idiot at the baby, his face smooth and cleanly shaven. "This is your dad." Then, bringing him back down to my breast, I leaned over and cooed, "And I'm your Mommy."
But not for long.
John bounced Sammy up and down on one knee, pulling faces that sent the month old child into bouts of gurgling, saliva-filled giggles. I couldn't help but chuckle myself as my mature, ex-marine husband crossed his eyes and stuck out his tongue. Sammy practically squealed with delight.
"Sammy!" Dean called from the floor, paying more attention to the baby than the Power Rangers on TV. John turned Sam around to face Dean, and the four-year-old put his hands up by his head, his thumbs touching his ears, and wiggled his fingers. Sammy's dribble fell down his chin and landed on his shirt as he gave a toothless smile.
"Okay," I announced as I rose from the armchair, stretching my arms above my head. "Who wants ice cream?"
Dean scrambled up from his crouched position on the floor in front of the couch and practically fell over himself in his haste to run over to me. All the while, he was chanting, "Me! Me! Me!" But as he arrived at my side and instinctively grabbed my hand to pull me to the kitchen, he paused and turned back to the living room. "Does Sammy want any ice cream?"
I laughed. "Franken-Sam's too little to have ice cream. He has to eat baby food."
Dean started pulling me towards the kitchen. "Yuck."
"A couple of years ago you ate baby food, too," I pointed out with a playful smile.
Pulling a disgusted face, Dean shook his head in denial. "I never liked baby stuff."
We arrived in the kitchen, and I opened the freezer to pull out the quart of ice cream. As I scooped it into two bowls, I peered over at my eldest. He had climbed onto a chair but was gazing back towards the living room.
I cleared my throat. "I know your dad and I have been spending a lot of time with Sammy lately," I began, staring at the ice cream as I scooped it. "Does that bother you, Dean?"
"No," he murmured hesitantly, and I could see right through the lie.
"It's okay, honey. There's a good reason why we have to spend so much time with him. Know why that is?" Dean shook his head. "It's because of how little Sammy is. He's not a big boy, like you; he's just a baby. He can't feed himself, or go to the bathroom, or climb onto the box to wash his hands, like you can. So your dad and I have to help him with all of that. I know you're a big boy, so you can understand that, right, Dean?"
This time, Dean nodded confidently.
"So that means you have a really important job," I continued, and I could feel more than see his posture straighten as he listened eagerly. "Since you're the big brother, you've got to help your dad and me look after him, okay? You can do that for me, can't you?"
Dean nodded emphatically. "Yeah. Because I'm the big brother!" he declared, obviously excited at this new position he had gained.
I grinned and handed him the bowl of ice cream and a spoon. "That's right. Now try not to make a mess, okay?" I ruffled his golden hair, causing him to jerk away and shake it back to normal before running back to the living room to eat his ice cream with John and Sammy.
I picked up my own bowl and swirled the ice cream around a bit before joining my family in the living room.
The yellow eyes that I so often saw in the corners of my vision were there again, hiding in the shadows. They watched, hungry, keen—but waiting. A clock ticked next to my calendar. The eyes flickered for a moment before the dark silhouette dissolved in orange flames, with the words Your boy is mine suffusing into the air like smoke around him—
—and I woke in a cold sweat, clutching a fistful of blankets with one hand and my husband's nightshirt with the other. The heat of late summer mixed with the chill that raced under my skin, leaving me breathless and shaken. I glanced over at John; he was fast asleep, having had a late night at the garage.
A soft whining sound met my ears, and it took me a moment to realize that it came from the baby monitor. Not again. I had the urge to chuck the damn monitor across the room, just to watch it break. But I knew I had to go tend to Sammy. He cried a lot more than Dean ever did, but mostly just at night. As though he could sense something in the room with him.
Shaking off this thought as an after-effect of the nightmare, I tiptoed to the nursery in my white nightgown and made my way over to Sammy's crib. His little face was screwed up, and piercing wails were emanating from his open mouth. I leaned over, lifted him into my arms, and rocked him back and forth, but his cries continued.
"Mommy? Is Sammy okay?" Dean's quiet, sleepy voice came from the doorway.
I turned around slowly, still rocking Sam, and gave my eldest a tired smile. "Yeah, Franken-Sam's fine. Just cranky." I paused, working on my next thought. "Would you like to hold him?"
Dean nodded and hurried over to my side. John and I hadn't let Dean hold him yet, afraid that the four-year-old might drop him, being a bit reckless at that age. But I squatted down next to Dean and told him to hold out his arms, placing the crying Sam in them. "Now hold his head up like this, with the crook of your elbow, and wrap your arms like this," I said as I positioned him right.
"He's heavy," Dean commented without complaint in his voice.
I nodded. "That's why you have to be extra careful with him. If you drop him, he'll hit the floor pretty hard."
Dean nodded his head in agreement, and a smile tugged on his face. Sam was quieting down now, snuggling into Dean like a security blanket. Now he looked as content as Dean, standing there like a natural with Sammy held protectively in his arms. Then Dean looked up at me with those honest, twinkling hazel eyes.
"Look, Mommy. He stopped crying."
—blood fire darkness ceiling yelloweyes—
I wake from the nightmare slowly this time, struggling to arise from the depths of sleep. But I'm still exhausted, and I keep my eyes closed as warm drowsiness continues to envelop me.
I hear static and crying play through the baby monitor, but I don't want to get up. I checked on Sam last night; it's John's turn. Still in a haze of sleepiness, I roll over to wake my husband and tell him to check on the baby. Flicking on the light, I mutter, "John?" But the bed beside me is empty.
Sighing, I rise from the bed and trudge across the hall to Sammy's nursery, preparing to bitch John out later if he's not there. But in the darkness I can see his distinct silhouette, and I sigh in relief. No bitching tomorrow, then. Tiredly, I ask, "John, is he hungry?"
The quiet reply is nothing but a hissed, "Shhh," and I shrug, preparing to go back to sleep.
"Okay," I mumble, heading back down the hall to get a few hours of shuteye, but just as I think I'm home-free to sleep the rest of the night through, the light down the hall flickers. God damn, the light bulb chooses now to short out? Ticked off, I walk over and tap against the glass, hoping that it'll stop until we can run to the store for more light bulbs. "Hmm," I muse, because the bulbs in our house rarely short out, and because I can hear the television on downstairs. But who could be up?
If it's Dean, I'm going to have to talk to that boy about not sneaking around in the middle of the night to watch TV. He's a clever little one, and I wouldn't put it past him—even at four—to pretend to go to sleep and then slink downstairs to turn on some TV show he heard about.
So I walk down the stairs, deciding that this family really just needs to let me sleep for once, when I see who is slumped on the couch in front of the television, asleep. The blue glow of the screen washes over the rough features of John, and panic jolts through my heart as I realize who is with Sammy.
It's the thing—the creature with the yellow eyes. Time is finally up, and it's come to collect what it's been waiting for. Without a second's hesitation, I race back up the stairs, making a beeline for the nursery and shouting, "Sammy!" I know he won't respond—he's only six months old, for crying out loud—but I shout it anyway, needing to get to my son before the thing gets to it, trying to blink away the image of yellow eyes from my mind. "Sammy!"
I should have known, I should have done something, I should have told John… maybe we could have stopped it, but how was I to know it was real? Oh god, I should have done something before now, and I'm so sorry.
I make it to the nursery doorway, and I see the thing standing over my son's crib, its yellow eyes trained on me and a sneer lighting up its face in the darkness. It's more corporeal than I've ever seen it, and I let a horrified scream rip through my throat.
Hello, Mary, comes a low, throaty sound. And now I'm being pressed against the wall as though super-glued, and I can feel my feet leaving the ground. Panic is fluttering madly in my heart like trapped butterflies, and I'm sliding up the wall, oh god, I'm sliding up the wall to the ceiling—
—and before I even have time to react, my back is pressed against the ceiling above Sammy's crib, and I'm stuck there looking down on my youngest son, my blonde hair falling around my terrified face and my white nightgown fanning out around my legs. It's the most bizarre loss of gravity I've ever felt, being pinned up there at the top of the room, and it's a moment before I realize that I can hear John shouting my name in the distance.
The thing looks up at me with hungry yellow eyes, and the worst pain I've ever felt rips through me like white-hot flames. My stomach is being torn open, and in the bottom of my vision I can see the crimson blood staining my nightgown. I'm nearly blinded by the pain, but I can't make a sound. It's as though my vocal chords have been ripped out as well.
The thing grins and dissolves into the darkness of the room just as John hurries inside, looking around. I try to tell him to look up, that I'm here, but no sound comes out. I can only watch helplessly as he goes over to Sam's crib and murmurs something to him. I'm focused on the blood dripping from my abdomen, and I watch—almost as if I'm watching a fascinating movie—as a small drop of scarlet descends from my stomach and lands somewhere by Sam's head.
John's inspecting it now, and I know he'll look up and see me and save Sammy (and hopefully me, too) because he's always been strong like that. I know him, he'll make everything better, please…
…I'm so sorry I didn't tell him sooner about what I've seen, maybe he could have stopped it…
Another drop of blood falls through the air and lands on John's hand, and now I can see him looking up towards the ceiling, up towards me, and I can read the instant horror that mars his features, and I can read in his eyes: I'm sorry, Mary, I don't know how to fix this.
And he shouts, as though the world is being ripped away from him, as though his stomach is being slashed as well, "No! Mary!"
Before I can even attempt to say something—I love you, I'm sorry, save Sam and Dean, I should have told you—my back is scorching hot, and there are bright flames spreading out all around me.
The scent of smoke and smoldering flesh, the agony of flames clawing at my skin, the pain of having failed my family all burn within me until I can no longer see anything but the yellow eyes grinning up at me from the shadows.
Blinking through the fire and pain, I distantly watch John pick up Sam and run to the doorway. Oh please, don't let it get Sam, don't let it get Dean, let them be okay…
I can't see anything anymore as tears and fire and smoke and blood and yellow eyes cloud my vision, and I want to say something to John—say anything, tell him that I love him—but I can't, and it's worse agony than my own burning flesh.
But I can hear him shouting, "Mary! No!"
I'm so, so sorry.
I love you.
The room erupts in flames now, and I'm being entirely engulfed in the brightness and heat, and my blood is cauterizing on my blackened nightgown, and the yellow eyes look at me one last time, triumphant—