Here are prompts 9-16. These feature Dean as the prime narrator. I think I'll switch back and forth between the brothers for the remaining chapters. I hope you enjoy. Spoilers for this chapter are big through 2.10 "Hunted" and very minor through 2.13 "Houses of the Holy."

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Roadhymn

Prompts Nine through Sixteen: Dean POV

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9. connection

Every time. Every time someone dies, someone screams, someone does anything anything at all that might be a catalyst.

Gotta touch. Gotta make sure Sammy's still there. Rough feel of jacket, rougher feel of unshaved Sammy jaw in his palms. Pull down the face, make a careful study. Gotta look in those eyes, gotta see Sammy looking back. Not a demon. As long as there's no sheen of darkness, no spark of yellow, it's okay.

Sammy's looking at him funny, wanting to know what the deal is. Shrug it off. It's nothing. Pack it up, let's go.

Can't tell that it's because every time he turns around, he's half-expecting to see a devil where his brother used to be.

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10. lull and storm

Throws a beer to Sam, pries the lid off of his own with the edge of the end table. Takes a long swig, doesn't even taste it.

Sits down on the edge of his bed (tonight's bed, not his; no, never his). Reaches down and tugs on a shoelace, feels the sudden release of his foot. Stifles a yawn. Some lady with too many layers of makeup is hocking a vegetable dicer on TV.

Tilts more beer into his mouth, happens to glance at Sam. Sees the furrowed brow, the unopened bottle being rolled from hand to hand. Can sense the conversation hanging in the air. Before Sam's even opened his mouth, he's slammed his heel back into his boot.

Can't stand to have another talk about this, not now. The latest death is still hanging too low. Stands abruptly, heads for the door.

The sound of his name being called is cut off when he slams the door shut behind him.

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11. animal

Remembers being thirteen. Remembers the summer in the cabin in some bumfuck landlocked mountainous state. There was a dog. (Good boy, good dog.) Taught it some tricks. Got attached.

Dog went missing. Came back week and a half later, foaming. Dad wasn't around. Ordered Sammy inside, grabbed a shotgun. Shot the thing twice between the eyes. Didn't even hesitate. (It was a danger.)

Sammy cried for hours. Can still see the dirt caked in tear-trails down the chubby cheeks as they dug a grave.

Stares now at that same face—so different and just the same all at once and it's like he's seeing two Sams—and he feels his breath catch in his chest as he imagines two rounds between the eyes. (The boy's a danger.)

He just hopes Sam will understand, when the time comes.

Understand that he can't.

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12. children

"We'll be the last, won't we?"

The question is so left-field that for a moment he doesn't know how to respond. Peels his eyes from the road ahead and takes in the sight of Sam looking up out the window.

Wonders sometimes if he woulda made a good uncle.

But it won't happen. Not now. Maybe, this time last year, they had thoughts of finishing this, getting out of the business.

No normal life now. If the demon didn't get 'em, the law would. And no way in hell is he gonna raise a kid like he was raised.

Yeah, he thinks to himself, we'll be the last. John and Mary die with us.

He's not sure how he's supposed to feel about it.

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13. we all float on

Beating the hell outta some guy before he even knows what's going on. Just stopped for a drink. The guy was looking at Sam funny. Like he knew. And ever since Gordon (that sonuvabitch) he's been on edge. So it doesn't take much, just one off-hand comment and suddenly his fist is flying at the guy's face and the skin on his knuckle has split and he's screaming profanities and there are two other dudes and Sam pulling him up and away from the sorry bastard.

Sammy is stonily silent in the car, but every time he catches a glimpse of the oozing blood on the back of his hand (and it's only partially his and he's damn proud) in the flashing of another car's headlights he gets this rush and it's okay.

Sometimes he just needs the fight.

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14. chess

Doesn't wanna believe in God, because if there's some greater good than himself, what does that make him in this game?

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15. duty

Sammy and his promise can go screw themselves. And Dad and his warning. All of 'em. They can go find another soldier, because he's through taking orders.

Won't let it happen, not to his baby brother. Needs Sam. Needs him like god only knows. All he's got left wrapped up in a six-foot-four frame sitting next to him hurtling down this highway at seventy miles an hour to somewhere else and a future that he's sure won't last long enough.

If he has to, he'll do it for him. He'll kill Sam's victims for him, accept his punishment.

The things he's willing to do, the people he's willing to kill.

They don't matter any more. All that matters is Sam.

It's the goddamn prime directive: save Sammy.

Never changed. Never will.

And if it means selling his soul, show him to the currency exchange.

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16. rip

Feels like there's a hole in him now. Feels like they missed a wound in the hospital, feels like his father's words took up residence there, festering.

While he held them in himself, they hurt him so badly. A constant pressure, and he felt them burn, trying to escape from that wound. And they did, finally. Spilled out of him, came out as twisted and perverse as the first time he heard them, scaring Sammy, scaring himself.

There's a space now where the words used to be. Now that the burn is gone, it's so cold. He worked so hard to keep his armor up, and now there's a huge corroded spot where he feels that the slightest provocation could kill him.

It's not good, he decides. He'll keep things to himself next time.

Lesson learned.