Holidays are coming….
"Only a couple of weeks now till' Thanksgiving…"
It was the first time either boy had spoken in the last hour, and it was a pretty random statement for anyone to make in the middle of researching black dog attacks in Montana.
It was a really random statement, coming from Dean Winchester. Sam looked up from the 'borrowed' library book he was taking notes from and raised one eyebrow slightly, a 'What the hell?' expression on his face.
"What?" Dean shrugged his shoulders. "I was just sayin" He looked away from Sam and continued flicking through Dad's Journal.
"Whatever" Sam clicked his tongue as he scribbled out something he had just written and silence descended upon their motel room once more.
It didn't last long.
"Remember the year Pastor Jim's oven went on fire?" Dean twirled his pen around his thumb and first finger and chuckled softly. "I don't know why Dad thought that pan of turkey grease was water, I mean talk about adding fuel to the fire." he quipped, throwing the pen at Sam's head as he finished the sentence.
"Ow! We were lucky we weren't all killed Dean" Sam retorted, picking the pen up from where it landed on the pillow beside him and flicking it back towards his brother.
Even he couldn't help smiling however at the memory of John, Pastor Jim and Dean trying to put the fire in the kitchen out whilst Sammy was left standing in the middle of the yard with the half cooked turkey, trying to keep about a dozen cats from eating it.
"At least we saved dinner" Dean's voice trailed off and he turned back to the journal.
"So, what did you do in college for Thanksgiving?"
If Sam hadn't been sitting so close to his brother; their beds were almost touching, he would never have believed Dean had actually spoken those words. His brother had abandoned the journal was now lying stretched on his back along the bed, eyes closed, hands behind his head. Was the great Dean Winchester, king of avoidance actually asking a personal question?
Sam's eyes immediately went to the line of salt he had carefully laid along the door a couple of hours previously. It was unbroken.
Still, Sam had to be sure. 'Christo' he muttered softly to himself, glancing nervously at his brother for some kind of dramatic reaction.
"What?" Dean looked up and noticed the puzzled, bordering on freaked out expression on his brother's face. "Jesus Sam, don't look at me like that, it was only a freakin' question, forget about it!"
"Sorry!" Sam waved one arm apologetically. "It's just you never asked me anything about college before, Dean."
"Well you didn't ask too many questions about what Dad and I did either. So I'm asking now Nerd boy…did you go partying, spend all day in the library, what?" Dean sat up his legs crossed underneath him, facing his brother.
Sam shrugged his shoulders.
"Let me guess, you and your geek buddies had some kind of freaky all night spelling B or something" Dean ventured, looking for a reaction and was rewarded with a pillow thrown full force at this head. "Dad and I didn't bother much with Thanksgiving." Dean then volunteered. "Didn't seem much point you know, its only one day, and you know, there was just the two of us."
'You were the main reason we celebrated Thanksgiving all those other years' Dean didn't say it out loud though, he wasn't going to be that much of a wuss.
Maybe Sam knew anyway.
"I went to Jess's parents a couple of times," he began. It was weird talking about stuff like this with his brother but for some reason Dean wanted to talk, so who was Sam to argue?
"It was a bit, well…full-on, you know? Her Mom and Dad, 4 sisters, aunts, uncles, grandparents…they were all really close, they had their family jokes, stuff that wasn't meant for strangers. I mean don't get me wrong, they were all really nice, really treated me like one of the family but….I just….dunno."
For once Sam was the one unable to express what he truly meant. "It was no good without you, or Dad. Even fighting families are better than none at all, or someone else."
"What about last year?"
Sam was about to speak and then he stopped and thought. Last year? Last year Jess's family had gone skiing for Thanksgiving, Sam was invited, but he couldn't afford it and no way were Jess's parents paying for him. So he lied, said he was going home to his Dad and brother. He'd watched TV, walked around campus, and gone to bed early. No big deal.
Then he realized.
"Dean, what about last year, why are you interested?" He tried to keep his voice level, to mask the accusation.
"I'm not; I'm just making conversation Sammy. You're the one who loves to talk"
Silence descended again, an uncomfortable silence this time. Dean lay back down and closed his eyes. Sam had left down his library book and was busy counting the frayed threads on the old brown bedspread.
Eventually it was Sam who broke the silence. "You were there, weren't you? Last thanksgiving I mean. You saw me."
Funny, once Dean said it Sam wasn't surprised. "Why didn't you call over, or phone?" he asked quietly, not looking across at his brother's expression.
"I did. I mean I saw you, walking into your apartment. I was gonna call, and then, well, I thought you must be with Jessica or friends or something. Besides, I had to meet Dad."
"Oh" 'Happy Thanksgiving'
"If I'd known you were on your own, I mean, maybe I would have…." Dean's voice trailed off.
"You would have called me a geek boy loner with no life and dragged me to the nearest bar where we would have both gotten drunk and ended up fighting." Sam finished the sentence for him, but he wasn't angry or annoyed.
Dean smiled "Probably"
"Winchester holidays are all fucked up." Sam signed and lay down on his own bed, legs hanging over the end as usual.
"Yeah, they are." Dean yawned as a wave of drowsiness washed over him.
"Dean?" Sam's voice was also sleepy.
"Thanks. For coming to find me that day."
Dean couldn't help grinning. "No problem."
"How's about this thanksgiving we go to a bar and get drunk? Maybe even get into a row later?"
"Sounds perfect" Sam turned to face his brother, tucked one arm under his head and closed his eyes.
"Goodnight Jerk" Dean added Sam's pillow to his own two and turned the light off.