The boys were burning the midnight oil, tearing up the pavement. Well…Dean was.
Dean's eyes ran down the windshield and across the dash. They slipped past the air vents and landed on Sam's big foot pinned to the dash.
Dean chuckled to himself as he glanced up at Sammy and thought about the adult that little boy had become.
Look at him. My best friend. He's a grown man, he holds his own in every situation, takes care of everyone around him, and keeps me in line. And now he's in the front seat of my car snoring and drooling.
The air outside was cold but calm. The only wind that blew was created by the pace of the car. It was quiet. An uncomfortable quiet.
A little music won't wake the sleeping giant.
Dean's right hand left the steering wheel and settled on the radio. He clicked it on and the rhythm of Johnny Watson filled the car. Dean let the sounds sooth him. As he listened he allowed the low rumbles of the bass take him over. His breathing was relaxed, his heart rate slowed a little, and his blood pressure dropped. Music always calmed Dean, weather it was slow and soulful or loud and angry.
So Dean sat in his car, cutting through the night, with Sammy asleep in the seat next to him. All was not right, but things were good. Dean felt good.
The song came to an end and the next followed it immediately. Guitar strings. The pace picked up. Then Drums. Together. He knew the song, he had heard it hundreds of times. But this time it cut Dean like a knife. Every muscle in his body went taut. He clenched his jaw and his grip on the wheel tightened.
I see the pale moon risin'.
I see trouble on the way.
I see earthquakes and lightning.
I see bad times today.
He was tense. The music irritated him. His back started to hurt. His head started to hurt. He shifted in his seat. What the hell? He couldn't get comfortable. His heart rate picked up and his breathing became labored.
Hope you got your things together.
Hope you are quite prepared to die.
Looks like we're in for nasty weather.
There's a bad moon on the rise.
Dean put his foot on the brake pedal and eased the car off the road. He needed a second: catch his breath, stretch his muscles.
As the car came to a stop Sammy woke up.
"What's going on?" He innocently asked, only half awake.
He looked over at Dean and saw his brother's face was flush. Then he heard it. 'Bad Moon Rising'. The unofficial soundtrack to the beginning of the end.
Sammy lunged forward and turned off the radio.
"Dean! Are you okay?"
Dean slowly turned and looked at Sam.
"Yeah, I think. I just needed to take a break for a minute. I uh, I don't know". Dean swallowed hard, "I just got this feeling and my chest got tight and I couldn't breathe and I couldn't concentrate on the road. I don't know what happened".
Sammy knew. It was the song reminding him of what happened. Dean had never talked about being attacked by the demon or nearly dying. Both boys had focused on John's death and what they had lost. Sam knew that what happened to Dean that night would come up eventually.
And now it had.
"Come on, let's get some air".
Sam got out of the car and Dean followed suit. Dean rolled his neck and rubbed his eyes with the heels of his palms. The two boys started moving down the shoulder of the highway.
"You doing alright?" Sam asked.
"Yeah. I'm feeling a little better".
Sam stopped and turned to Dean, "It was the song, man".
"What are you talking about?" Dean honestly had no idea what Sam was talking about.
"That song. That's what was playing in the car the night of the accident".
Sam stopped for a split second to allow Dean to process what he was telling him. "I didn't turn it on, it just came on the radio when I was driving to the hospital. Don't you remember?" Sam inquired.
Dean's mind flashed back to that night. There was a lot about that night that Dean didn't remember because he wouldn't let himself remember. But now he needed to, so he closed his eyes and allowed the events of the evening to come to him.
Dean remembered his father's possessed body and the fear he felt as the demon tore into his flesh. He remembered the overwhelming need to protect his family. He remembered being pinned to that wall and trying so hard not to pass out, but losing it anyway when the pain was too much. He remembered falling to the floor, begging Sam not to shoot John. He remembered how wrong it felt to him to need someone else so much. He remembered Sam picking him up off the floor like a limp doll and carrying him to the car…seeing his own blood on Sammy's jacket.
There on the side of an abandoned highway Dean looked at Sam's jacket where the blood had been…and he started to lose it a little inside.
Dean covered his face with the palm of his hand and took a deep breath. He paced in front of the car. He stopped and glared at the grill of the machine.
"Let's get out of here", Dean said.
He tossed the keys to a silent Sam.
"Dean", Sam started.
"Let's go", Dean snapped as he yanked open the door to the impala.
Sam reminded himself, this is how Dean deals. He wished that Dean could learn and understand that bottling it up and holding it in and not talking about it only makes things worse. He wished he could give his brother what he learned from Jessica's death. But for now all Sam could do was get behind the wheel and drive till he found a motel. Dean would want to sleep soon.
The radio was off. The boys rode in silence for about an hour before Sam came up on a motel. The brothers checked in and headed to the poorly decorated room.
"You wanna get something to eat?" Sam asked once they were in the room.
"No. I'm just going to take a shower and go to bed", Dean told Sam as he rummaged through his duffle.
"Alright. Well, I'm going to order a pizza", Sam said as he waved a flyer in the air. "It'll be here when you get out of the shower if you decide you're hungry".
Dean went into the bathroom and shut the door behind him. He turned on the shower, stripped down, and climbed in. That's when Dean let go. He let one tear fall then he couldn't stop them from coming. Dean leaned against the shower wall and cried. He cried for everything he lost, for everything he didn't have, for everything he wanted, for everything he needed, and for everything he feared. And as he cried he took solace in knowing that Sam would never know. Dean washed up and got out of the shower feeling lighter.
When Dean stepped out of the bathroom he found Sam sitting on his bed with a piece of pizza in his hand and his mouth full. It made Dean smile. He took the towel from around his neck and rolled it in the air before he snapped Sam on the back of the neck.
"Hey!" Sam yelped.
"Sorry Sammy. Couldn't help it…you're like a sitting duck".
"You want some?" Sam gestured to the pizza.
"Yeah, pass it this way", Dean accepted.
As the pair sat eating pizza right out of the box Sam made one last attempt at breaking his brothers armor.
"When you're ready to talk about it, you know I'm here Dean", Sam offered.
Dean scoffed, "Didn't I tell you about a year ago that there would be no chick flick moments?"
A/N: Alright kiddies…is that it?? Should I continue and add more Dean angst?? Let me know! PLEASE REVIEW! I'm waiting to hear if you want more….
Thanx for reading…by the way!