A/N - Okay, this actually is the final chapter! Thanks for sticking with this and thanks again so much for everyone who took the time to write. It really makes this whole experience so rewarding :)
"Are you crazy?" Sam hisses angrily and if he'd been taking a drink from his beer, it would be sprayed the hell over the floor right now.
"What?" Dean looks up at him with mild curiosity, head tilted, rosebud lips pursed.
"You can't just pick up some random guy and sleep with him," Sam mutters back furiously, unaccountably fighting a blush.
This gets him a narrow eyed frown.
"Why not?" Dean asks in a soft, sweet, gentle voice that somehow manages to convey the warning of 'do not make me kick your ass little bro.'
"Because for one thing you're not gay, asshole!" Sam retorts as he grabs his bottle and takes a long pull of beer. He's not going to feel weird about discussing this. He's not.
"I'm open to exploring my sexuality," Dean responds soberly and fuck it all Sam's almost positive there's a wicked gleam of amusement shining somewhere in those evil, evil green eyes.
Sam hears his own teeth grind as he glares down at Dean. She's punking him. He's almost sure. But there's this tiny little seed of doubt that makes him surly. "Well maybe you should be open to not being a slut," he mutters and is wincing even as he's finishing because, oh man, that was so not the right thing to say.
Sure enough, the amusement vanishes completely from narrowed eyes. "Dude, I pick up chicks in bars all the time. How is this different?"
Sam bites back the instinctive response of "It just is!" and tries to come up with something that a) will logically help him win this argument (Jesus you're going to be a lawyer Sam, you're supposed to be good at this shit) and b) will not make him out to be a caveman which he had never, ever thought he was but apparently the latent caveman gene is tied in with having a sister.
"You don't know what side effect the spell could have on you. What if you get pregnant before you turn back?" Yes. Good Sam. Good, logical argument.
Dean actually blinks at that one. There's a moment of silence and Sam cautiously begins to hope he's won when Dean shrugs and lifts the beer to her lips again for a swift pull. Dropping the bottle back down she smiles at Sam, eyes wicked once more. "That's what condoms are for Sammy boy."
Before Sam can point out that, statistically speaking, condoms are only 98.5 percent reliable, Dean is already turning and scanning the bar, asking "what about that one over there?" Sam looks to where Dean's pointing casually at a lean, blonde preppy type who's playing pool with some of his preppy friends but is clearly paying attention to the tawny haired babe at the bar because he immediately smiles back at Dean, straightening up and resting his hand on his cue.
Sam hates him instantly. The blonde is clearly one of those rich assholes of the type that abound at Stanford who's had life handed to him on a tiffany fucking platter and doesn't respect women at all. God, his name's probably Biff or Warren and he's probably got a 'The IV' to go after it. No. No way.
"He looks like an asshole," Sam states flatly, ignoring the incredulous look he can feel coming from Dean.
"Dude he looks like someone you'd have hung out with at Stanford," Dean points out mildly.
"Well he's not. He's someone I would have avoided at Stanford." Sam scowls as he watches the blonde, apparently having been encouraged by Dean's smile, hand his cue off to one of his companions and head over.
He approaches and he's even more annoying and blonde and perfect looking up close. "Hi," he smiles with perfect, blindingly white teeth. "I'm Jordan."
Of course you are, Sam thinks, and realizes his teeth are grinding again.
"Hey yourself," Dean smiles back, just as wide and twice as effective. "I'm, uh, Dean and this is Sam."
Jordan of the perfect smile blinks in surprise and then smiles again. "Dean. Cool name." To the credit which Sam absolutely refuses to grant him, Jordan then turns and smiles at Sam; not as big as what he offered Dean but genuinely friendly. "So you two go to Wentworth?"
Sam always checks out the nearest learning institutions when they hit a new town. It's amazing how often colleges and Universities have books on the arcane buried in their library stacks or at least have historical records of the town that prove useful in a hunt. So he knows Wentworth is a University nearby; pretty well ranked and actually with a decent law program. "No," his answer is curt and he doesn't care. "We're just passing through."
It seems to throw Jordan off balance a little but he recovers quickly and offers them another genuine smile (damn him). "Oh, well, hey you're welcome to join us for a game of pool." He turns and indicates the small group of people who are half playing pool and half watching their friend to see if he strikes out. At Jordan's wave the one's who aren't actually lining up a shot smile and wave and beckon with general good humor.
Sam opens his mouth to refuse but is cut off by Dean who finishes her beer with one swift swallow, smacks it down on the bar and grins up at Jordan, good humor and a flirting smile lighting up her pixie face. "Well I do enjoy a game of pool," she offers with an easy grin and, just like that, she's walking off with Jordan. Sam watches them walk away and spends a serious minute contemplating how perfect Jordan would look with some of his perfect teeth knocked out of his perfect mouth and then he rolls his eyes and gives up. With a deeply aggrieved sigh he grabs his beer off of the bar, drops some bills in its place and follows to protect his sister's long gone virtue.
What's annoying is that despite his sincere conviction that Jordan the perfect is an asshole, his friends turn out to be pretty damn nice and Sam probably would have been friends with them if they had known each other at Stanford. There's Ace, the sleepy-eyed behemoth who's studying agriculture so he can go back and work on the family farm. There's Les, a skinny guy with wire frame glasses and caramel cream skin who's pre-law and who beams like its Christmas morning when he learns Sam was pre-law at Stanford. Then there's Evie; blonde, outrageously curvy, with a wicked gleam of mischief in her cobalt blue eyes that reminds Sam of Dean when he's feeling playful. And finally there's Jenny; a bean pole with a long fat braid of mahogany hair and the sweetest smile Sam's seen in a long, long time. They're friendly and good natured and when they ask where Sam and Dean are headed to, Dean glibly spins the truth 'oh, we're taking a road trip on the way to meet up with our Dad.'
At the news that Sam and Dean are siblings Jordan beams like he's just won the lottery and redoubles his flirting with Dean who laps it up and returns it in kind and it's really weird, not to mention deeply disturbing, to witness the female version of horndog Dean in action. Subtlety, thy name sure as shit is not Dean Winchester.
Dean and Jordan end up teamed against Sam and Jenny in a hotly contested game of eight ball while the rest watch/cheer/heckle/urge them on. Dean's not interested in hustling so he and Sam don't sandbag just how very good they are. In fact, Dean starts showing off for Jordan, taking trick shot after trick shot to the increasing applause of the group and the frequent eye rolls of Sam.
Jordan's a decent pool player but it's Jenny who turns out to be the shark of the group and since Sam's damn good himself (just not as good as Dean) it's a pretty even match. In the end, they split the first two games and Dean and Jordan take the third by virtue of Dean running the table and by then Sam's relaxed pretty much in spite of himself. It almost feels like he's back at Stanford, hanging out with his buds after finals only there's the added bonus of Dean being there too. It's close to the fantasy that Sam will never, ever tell Dean he used to have during his first, desperately homesick, year at Stanford. Too Winchester stubborn to call and ask but praying that his big brother would show up unannounced at the dorm or the local hangout with his easy grin and protective gaze that meant home.
Ace has a wicked understated sense of humor that Sam can appreciate. Talking to Les is like being back in a coffee shop with his pre-law study mates. Evie is a firecracker of energy and she spends most of her time laughing with Dean and Jordan which Sam is grateful for because it means there's someone besides him running interference. And Jenny…well Jenny is someone Sam feels immediately at ease with; something he's not used to. Oh Winchesters can charm a witness, snow a mark, or slide into a group of strangers with a wink and a grin but to actually genuinely feel at ease with someone right off the bat? Not considered a Winchester virtue. But it feels…great. So after the pool game wars are over Sam finds himself at a small round table drinking beer at an easy pace and scarfing down bar food and just talking to Les and Jenny about life and school and random thoughts and enjoying himself the way he hasn't since, well, Stanford and a fire that destroyed his life a second time.
He still remembers to cast a frequent, assessing eye over at Dean and perfect asshole Jordan who're still at the pool table but, well, Evie's still running interference so Sam lets himself relax further into the atmosphere of friendship. Which is why it's such a surprise when suddenly his Dean sixth sense kicks in and he whips his head up just in time to see her disappear out the bar door with…Evie?
Blinking in surprise he turns and watches as a ruefully smiling Jordan drags another chair up to their table, waving at the waitress for a beer. The table's occupants eye Jordan in surprise but it's Les who finally asks the question the others are thinking as he slowly scans the room. "Hey man. You strike out?" He then seems to remember that Dean is Sam's sister and offers him a half apologetic grimace which Sam acknowledges with a shrug.
"Uh, yeah," Jordan's smile turns sheepish and he runs a hand through his perfectly gelled hair. "Dean and Evie, uh, left. Together."
A moment of dead silence descends as the IQ of every male at the table (except Sam) drops about fifty points (and hell it doesn't happen to Sam only because he's desperately reciting the lord's prayer in Latin to block the mental image of girl-Dean and curvy Evie going at it in hot lesbian sex). Even Jenny has a weird look in her eyes although maybe she's just trying not to burst into guffaws of laughter at how pathetically easy men are.
"Wow," Les finally breathes out after the silence stretches while Ace just continues to have a far, far away look in his eyes accompanied by a dreamy smile.
Sam, meanwhile, is shaking his head in resigned annoyance. Dean, that frigging bastard, was probably planning this from the very beginning with Evie his target all along. Still annoyed, Sam turns and studies Jordan's still sheepish feature and realizes with growing sympathy that really, the guy's not so bad. And Dean was kind of an asshole for leading the guy on like that. Feeling sympathetic, Sam reaches out to give Jordan a clap on the back in male bonding sympathy and offers him a fry.
They close out the bar and in the pre-dawn hours Sam finds himself exchanging e-mail addresses with Jenny and Les and being dropped off at the motel feeling relaxed and happy. He notices the Impala's not in the motel lot and is not surprised to enter the motel room and find it empty of Dean's presence. He feels a momentary hit of worry but knows, dammit, that Dean can take care of herself even when he is a she. And it's not even like Dean's hunting. She's off having sex with an incredibly hot girl and it's not like Dean has ever needed any help with that. So Sam jumps into the shower to wash the bar smoke out of his hair, spends an hour on the computer checking e-mails and doing some random surfing and then turns in.
Does he fall asleep? Of course not. But he's there, in bed, eyes determinedly closed when he hears the lock turning about two hours later. Eyes opening instantly, he sees the outline of girl Dean enter their room and Sam feels muscles he didn't know were tense relax.
He debates pretending to sleep but mentally shrugs and prop himself up on his elbows, eyeing his sister with wry irritation. "So Evie, huh?"
Dean stops pulling off the boots she'd hunted down at a thrift store earlier in the day and offers Sam a grin; a flash of gleaming white in the darkened shadows of the room.
"What happened to Jordan?" Sam asks with polite irony thick in his voice.
The grin widens. "Well, there's always tomorrow," Dean responds, a mischievous lilt decorating her voice as she pulls her t-shirt over her head and off in one swift move that causes Sam to hastily squeeze his eyes shut to block her naked outline. Gah.
Sam firmly decides with eyes still determinedly shut that Dean is definitely punking him and he will think of this no more.
The next couple of days end up being some much needed down time for Sam and Dean. They take it easy, sleeping in, hanging out, taking turns insulting each other and doing some low key research. They even make it to a movie one morning; a horror flick and damn, it's a good thing the matinee's not crowded because Sam practically gnaws through his hand to keep from cracking up at how very, very bad it is and because Dean keeps leaning over and making wise ass asides to him like "ooh, impressive how he's luring that werewolf to its doom by feeding it his arm. Take notes now Sammy. We gotta try that next time."
They spend the rest of the time doing inventory and stocking up on low supplies and Dean manages to slip out and hook up with Evie a couple more times which is practically an engagement for Dean and he returns from each assignation with a very well-fucked look on her face that makes Sam want to ask, only...fuck no.
The three days pass swiftly and suddenly it's almost over and the fun and relaxation of the past days slowly fall away as night approaches and the possibility of not changing back manages to push and shove and claw its way to the forefront of Dean's thoughts, making him tense and grim faced.
At ten at night Dean is already prepared for bed in her boxers and the tank that she finally gave in to wearing to shut up Sam's complaints (aka whining). Although he knows Dean would pretty much gouge her own eyeballs out before admitting it Sam also knows what's going through Dean's mind, what's making her answers curt and her smile a dim shadow. But Sam also knows that if he tries to offer any words of comfort Dean will give him a 'you are such a little emo bitch' look and a sneer so instead Sam stays quiet and gets ready for bed at the same time, knowing his quiet presence is the only comfort his brother will accept.
And so they're both in bed by ten thirty and there's a thick silence blanketing the room as neither of them feels anything close to sleepy.
Around midnight, Sam hears Dean toss the covers back and slip into the bathroom for a leak. The sound of the toilet flushing and running water permeates the room for a minute before the light flashes dark again and Dean is back in bed, settling into an indistinct lump in the corner of Sam's eye.
At about a quarter to one, Sam hears Dean toss the covers back and slip into the bathroom again. She stays in there for several minutes and even though Sam can't see it he knows Dean's studying her image in the mirror with a grim face and dealing with the possibility that this might be what she wakes up with.
At about two thirty, Sam hears Dean cursing softly under his breath a litany of 'fuck, go to sleep, shit, suck it in, just fuck, goddammit, just go the fuck to sleep you fucking moron.'
At about three Sam feels a slight change in the room and knows that Dean has finally, finally drifted off and a few minutes after that he knows from the change in Dean's body language and just from years of sleeping in the same room with him that Dean has finally settled into a hard sleep.
About a minute after that Sam's dead to the world.
Sam wakes up, bleary-eyed and groggy and he lies there for a second wondering why he's so damn tired since for once there aren't any nightmares lingering at the edges of his subconscious. And then memory comes crashing back and he jack-knifes up off the bed, immediately looking over to the unmoving lump in Dean's bed. Sam's forehead wrinkles in worry. Should he wake him? But what if the spell hasn't had enough time to wear off? His eyes shoot to his cell phone on the night stand; 7:07 am. Fuck. Dean went to sleep barely four hours ago. What if waking him up too early interrupts the reversal process? But he can't just wait and there's no way he's going to be able to go back to sleep. Sam considers pulling the blanket back to take a swift look without waking Dean. But Dean has the instincts of a soldier out in the field, constantly alert to danger, even in his sleep. Of course Dean also has the instincts to know Sam means family and family means safe, so he might not wake up. Sam stands there, torn, gnawing on his chapped bottom lip before slowly, cautiously, reluctantly sitting down again. He can't risk it.
Approximately forty seven minutes later there's movement beneath the blankets. A shifting of position, a grumbled, sleepy murmur and Sam just can't take it another fucking minute. "Dean?" he asks cautiously, every nerve in his body tensed as the movement suddenly stills. "Dean?" he says more sharply this time when there is complete silence beneath the bed except for 'rustle, rustle, rustle.'
"Hey Sammy," the voice comes from under the blankets and Sam is already smiling when his brother shoves the covers back because it's Dean's voice and Dean's head that emerges, still too damn pretty but thank God very definitely male. The blankets push all the way back and Sam is deeply, deeply grateful that there are no longer any breasts attached to Dean's chest to avoid staring at.
Dean is beaming up at him with rare simple happiness, uncluttered by his usual snark or cynicism and Sam smiles back in sheer relief. His older brother, his constant is back to normal again.
Of course now that he is…
In a heart beat Sam's smile makes the shift from relief to smirking.
"Welcome back. Deanna."
Dean's grin widens and the expected attack is swift and sure and Sam knows its coming but barely has time to react before the tackle takes him to the floor and they're half-heartedly trying to kick each other's asses even as the grins remain.
"Oh, I think you're the little girl Samantha."
"I'm still taller than you asshole!"
"Yeah, cause you're a mutant freak."
"Hey! No tickling! No tickling!"
It's a fucking Hallmark moment. Winchester style.
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