Title: Angels and Superheroes

Summary: AU. Spoilers for Something Wicked. The hunter had set the trap with his youngest. Instead, the prey had taken Dean.

Warning: AU. Angst. Death fic.

Note: My flatmate and I decided that Sam should get a break from being the centre of demonic attention. So we thought we'd go bully Dean a little.

"My goodness, Sam. What a beautiful picture you drew. Is that your family?" Sam's teacher was nice. She had pretty hair and smelled like lemons, and didn't give Sam homework like Dean's teacher did. Dean's teacher was mean. Even daddy thought so.

She let them draw in class. Lots of pictures to fill up all the nasty blanks on the walls. Flowers and stars and smiling children. Sam drew his family, and she thought it was the loveliest picture in the world.

"That's mommy and daddy. They're holding hands. Dean says that that is what mommies and daddies do. Mommy has wings and a halo. She's an angel, and Dean says that angels are the prettiest people in the world, so only they get to wear halos."

"Is that a rifle your daddy is holding? Is he a hunter?"

"Yep. My daddy is the best hunter in the world. Besides, it's not any gun. It's a Winchester. Like us."

"I see. So who's this? The one in the cape? Your brother?"

"That's Dean. He can fly, and catch bullets, and kill zombies, and fight a hundred werewolves at once."

"A bit of a superhero, then?"

"Even daddy says so."

Dean had loved that picture. Loved it so much that he had rescued it from the trash when they came to move again. Mommy and daddy and Dean and me. He had folded it up nice and neat, put it in his bag where no one would find it.

Sammy was six, and he looked so damn small as he clung to John's leg. The boy trembled like a leaf on the wind, and John felt himself tremble with him. He wanted to call out to Dean, have the ten year old come and take Sammy in his arms and cheer him up, just like always.

Jim had been good on his word. No sermon for his son. No passages from the bible. No hymns. No false sympathy from strangers. Just the Winchesters, what was left of them, alone in their grief with their friends watching on in sadness and fear.

One prayer from Jim. One lament from Sammy. One silent plea for forgiveness from John.

The father pried his last treasure in the world from his leg, the child collapsing into a weak limbed state of grief.

It was fitting. John watched the body of his eldest vanish beneath the dirt, whilst his youngest whispered the name 'Dean, Dean,' over and over in his ear.

"You couldn't have known, John." Jim whispered in his other ear. The angel and the devil sitting on his shoulders, tormenting him. "You could not possibly have known."

Sammy called for his brother once more, and John pressed his cheek to the soft hair of his child. Jim and the angel faded into nothing, and he allowed Sam's desperate pleas to lead him into hell.

John had known. He had planned the damn thing.

It was supposed to go after Sammy.

Every evil son of a bitch wanted Sammy. Why was this bastard different?

They could have protected Sammy. That was what he and Dean did.

The hunter had set the trap with his youngest.

Instead, the prey had taken Dean.

"Daddy?" Sammy sniffed. John couldn't find his voice. He squeezed his boy tighter. "Daddy? Will Dean have real wings now? Like mommy? Dean said that angels have wings and halos, and I know Dean's not pretty like mommy was, but can God let Dean be like mommy, just this once?"

Wings. Dean would have hated the idea of wings. Wings were for chicks. Besides, why would superheroes need wings? There was nothing they couldn't do.

"Yeah, Sammy. God will let him have a halo."

John could almost see Dean in front of them. Not in white, never in white. Jeans and a ripped sweater. No halo. Just the promise to haunt their asses for the rest of eternity.

"Cos really. You guys need a superhero to watch out for you."