Dean's path back to consciousness was marked by Sam's voice. Good, he thought, If Sam's talking then it means he's alright. Whatever happened to me didn't get to him. That brought the second question to his mind. What had happened to him? He tried to remember, tried it really hard, but it was useless. It was like if his mind had drawn a blank.
He started feeling more alert, the words Sam was saying becoming more clear. He wasn't talking alone. Who was he talking to? Dad? No. Dean rejected the thought immediately. It still hurt the think about his dad's death. And now that he strained to hear the conversation better, no way that voice was John Winchester's.
"I thought you said he was doing better" he could hear the anger in his brother's voice. Of course, if something had happened to him, Sammy wouldn't be to happy about that, he guessed.
"He was. Tests from last week indicated he was no delusional and he didn't tried to convince anyone about his…" the voice owner cleared his throat before continuing "quest to hunt supernatural beings"
"Then what the hell happened?" Yeah, Dean knew that tone too well too. Sammy was about to panic, because he couldn't understand what was going on.
"He suffered a relapse yesterday during dinner. One of our nurses gave him his medications and Dean started shouting about how this nurse's eyes were black and about possession. He attacked the nurse while repeating something in Latin, and we had to sedate him heavily before having him escorted back to the infirmary"
What? He had done what? Okay, time to open his eyes. That had to be the weirdest dream, or nightmare, or whatever he ever had. Only thing was, opening his eyes was an easier thing said than done.
"Sam?" Was that his voice? He had barely heard himself. He doubted Sam would have heard him but immediately he heard soft footsteps approaching wherever he was. A hand was gently placed on his shoulder.
"Dean? Can you hear me, man?"
'Yes, Sammy, I hear you. If I could just manage to open…'. Finally he managed to get his eyelids to cooperate and after blinking several times to try and focus, he was able to see his brother's face looking at him with concern, although a tentative smile replace his expression when he saw Dean's eyes open.
"Hey man, you gave us quite a scare. You gotta stop doing that"
Dean tried to nod. He didn't know what he had to stop doing, but whatever it was, if it scared Sam he would try and stop doing it.
"Wha.. what happened?"
Sam looked at him with sadness in his eyes, but it was the voice he had heard talking to his brother before, the one who answered that question.
"You suffered a relapse, Dean. We had to sedate you before you hurt anybody else or yourself."
Dean turned his head so he could see the man speaking. Obviously a doctor, middle aged, not very tall and balding. His face showed sympathy while he talked. Dean's brow creased.
"A relapse? A relapse from what?" He looked at Sam again "What the hell is going on, Sam?"
Sam shifted uncomfortably before answering.
"You were doing really well, but yesterday… yesterday you once again thought one of the nurses was possessed. You attacked him and before they could stop you, you cracked him a couple of ribs"
Dean was beyond confused by now. If he had attacked a nurse because he thought he was possessed, chances were the man was really possessed, right? Maybe he was in the hospital because the Demon had gone after them again, and now was sending possessed people to finish him off and take Sammy… and he had to protect Sammy. He had sworn to his father.
"Sam, was it the Demon? Did it strike again?"
Sam sighed and sat down on the bed.
"Dean, there's no such things as Demons, you know that"
Dean's eyebrows shot up in surprise. How could Sam be making such an statement when he had dealt with Demons, monsters, spirits and ghosts most of his life? He tried to get up from the bed, only to find himself unable to do so, due to the leather cuffs strapping him to the bed.
"Why am I tied?"
He jerked at the cuffs, trying to get his hands free, but with no avail.
"Dean, please, you'll just end up harming yourself" once again the Doctor spoke with a very gentle tone, like if he was talking to a child instead of a 28 year old man. Dean shot him a murderous look
"Well, I wouldn't harm myself if you just took this damned things OFF!!" he shouted, jerking his arms with more force than before. The Doctor seemed completely unimpressed by his behavior, and continued speaking in the same calmed, soothing voice.
"Dean, if you don't calm yourself down, I'll be force to sedate you again. Would you like that?"
Dean was about to tell him what exactly he would like, when he felt Sam's hand on his arm, gently rubbing it.
The look on his brother's face was so sad Dean shut his mouth and breathed deeply.
"Okay. I'm calm. But I want to talk to my brother. Alone." He shot another murderous look at the Doctor with the last word.
"That's alright" The doctor looked at Sam who nodded. "I'll be nearby in case you need me"
'Yeah, sure, because I'll try and harm Sam' Dean thought at this words. He waited until the Doctor had left the room and closed the door before looking at Sam again, this time with a pleading look.
"Please, Sammy, what the hell is going on?"
Sam looked at him, still rubbing his arm gently. "What's the last thing you can remember?" from Sam's tone, it looked like it wasn't the first time they had had this conversation.
"I… I'm not sure. Did I get injured during a hunt? Are you alright?"
Sam nodded. "Yeah Dean, I'm alright. And you haven't been injured during a hunt. You've never hunted anything in your life"
Dean frowned. "Well, certainly I haven't hunted deers but you know what we do. Hunting things, the family business…"
Sam denied with his head. "Dean please, there's no family business. You're an electronic Engineer, I'm finishing my last year at law school and in a couple of weeks I'll start working in Johnson&Fredman Associates, and dad's got his car shop"
A cold fear spread around Dean at hearing that. What the hell was Sammy on about?
"Sam, I know we aren't supposed to discuss our hunts in front of people, but come on, we're alone. Tell me what's going on. Why am I in the hospital?"
Sam shock his head again. "You're not in the hospital, Dean. You're in…" he gulped, unsure about how to phrase it.
"In a what? Out with it, Sam" Dean found himself loosing his patience.
"In a psychiatric institution. You have been here for six months already"
Dean felt how all the color drained from his face, and let his head again sag towards the pillow.
"What?" he whispered
Sam kicked open the door and entered the room, shotgun ready. He looked around, but it quickly became obvious there wasn't anybody or anything in there. He lowered his weapon and looked around. The room, only twelve feet per twelve feet was dark. Dark walls, dark ceiling, dark floor. Only a mattress on the floor indicated that it had held someone captive. Kneeling down next to the mattress, Sam picked up the only other object of the room. A pendant attached to a long black cord. Dean's amulet. He slowly got up clutching it tightly. He wanted to scream and shout. To kick something. To.. to have his brother back. It had already been two weeks and this was the first sign of him.
Dejected, Sam left the room and moved outside the house. Walking towards the Impala, he picked up his phone and dialed a number he had come to memorize. He wait only two signals before someone picked the phone up on the other side of the line, and he could hear Ellen's rough voice.
"Ellen, Dean was here, but they moved him. Somehow whoever took him knew I was coming. Tell Ash to continue the search. I'll be at the Roadhouse in about ten hours."