He was conceived, born, and raised on the mountain. He knows everything it can tell him, the air rushing around his head, the grass soft under his feet, the stones steady against his hands. There are other things he knows too.

Sam Winchester calls him. Sammy is a boy with soft hair who tolerates a fond hand on his head only for a second, shrugging it off and going back to his book or ducking out from under it to stand by his brother.

Hunters call him all the time, say Joshua, help me. He can't help them, not from so far away. The ones who show up, though; they're not always welcome.

Sam says something different. Sam does not waste words with cries for help, looking for an easy answer. Sam says, Help me save him. Joshua. It's Dean.

Dean is all eyes, looking and concentrating, looking and memorizing, looking and learning. Dean never once realizes how much he's giving away with that open gaze.

Joshua thinks back to the way the boys clung to each other, reaching across their father's lap for one another. He finds the feeling of that bond and walks to the top of the mountain, where he'd never dare to build a house. He sinks into the mud and grass and opens himself up. He finds a feeling of desperation, of love, and he knows he has his answer.

He walks back down to his house and calls Sam. Tells him there are solutions of a sort in Nebraska. He goes back up the mountain and waits, thinking of two brothers, little fingers tangled together, hair ruffling in the breeze as one of them laughed and the other followed.