One Final Showdown

Sam watched as the spots danced in front of his eyes behind his closed eyelids. He'd been on that couch for the past day, barely moving, barely speaking, barely living. He had tucked himself away in an area where it didn't hurt. He had been amazed when he'd actually numbed himself. He couldn't feel a thing, it was great.

Jessica sat on the chair opposite the couch and watched him. He seemed peaceful, almost content. Chewing on her bottom lip nervously she considered what she should do. Sam wasn't speaking to her, and as far as she knew he hadn't eaten anything in the past day and a half at least. Even when her brother had come back with Justin, it hadn't disturbed him.

She'd gotten ridiculed by her brother for bringing a stranger into Justin's house. She had sit and listened to all of thirty seconds before she'd told him he was the one who had gotten rid of the ghost in Deer Lodge. Her brother hadn't said another word.

Justin had been a different story. "I don't want no dude dyin' on my couch."

Jessica sighed and concentrated once more on Sam. "Sam?" she tried again. "You need to eat, or something. Are you awake?" She began to get worried. He had a deep cut on his chest, and multiple stitches. She was willing to be he'd had surgery, and a major one.

She had changed the bandages, and had been keeping an eye out for any drastic changes that might signal an infection. The small white bracelet glared at her, and she knew what she had to do. Right now Sam should be in a hospital, not laying here on this couch.

Right now his physical health was probably more important than his mental.

She pulled out her phone and walked towards the door. She sat again on the porch and dialed Dean's number.


"Hey Dean," she said carefully.

"Jessica, where are you? Don't feed me some crap line about Sam not wanting me to know either," Dean said, agitation evident in every word. The numbers in front of him raced as he refilled the gas tank. He'd been out driving all night, and this was his second time having to refill. Hours ago Jim had asked to go back to the motel, they needed rest, but Dean couldn't. He had no clue where Sam and Jessica were staying, but he'd been determined to be out there looking.

"I think Sam needs to go back to the hospital."

"Jessica, where are you?" he repeated, suddenly on high alert. He fought to contain his rage, but it was boiling awfully close to the top. Sam was being an idiot, and Jessica wasn't helping the situation.

"Three-oh-nine east sixth street, just past the mall."

"I'll be there in five minutes." He hung up the phone and pulled the pump from the tank.

"Twinky?!" Jim asked with a grin as he stepped from the small shopette. He almost dropped the small cake when he caught sight of Dean's face.

Things were getting ugly.

"Sam," Dean said as he looked down at his brother, clenching his fists and resisting the urge to punch the wall. Sam's eyes fluttered open, and he focused on Dean's face.

"Dean," he muttered, turning away. It shamed him knowing he was lying here, in front of Dean, so damn weak. His brother was always so strong, why couldn't he be? He felt the usual guilt and pain begin to surface again, and let out a small moan as he fought to push it back down.

"Come on Sam, you need to go back to the hospital," Dean insisted, grunting as he pulled Sam to a sitting position. He heard the stifled gasp the movement undoubtedly hurt Sam. He cursed his brother's stupidity. When Sam was feeling better, he was going to have to remind his brother he couldn't just escape from the hospital. It had served no real purpose.

Sam saw the disappointment that briefly flickered through Dean's eyes, and he lowered his own to the floor. He felt the guilt and pain begin to surface once more, and he fought to numb it once more. He just couldn't deal with it right now.

Another stifled gasp as Dean pulled him to his feet. He swayed unsteadily, and almost lost his balance. Immediately Dean's arms were around him, supporting him.

They were halfway to the car when a blinding pain tore threw Sam's head.

"I don't want to hurt anymore."
"I know honey."
"Can you make it stop?"
"Yes. Come with me."


"Sam!" Dean struggled under the sudden dead weight of his brother. "Son of a bitch! Jim, grab his other side!"

Jessica stood in shock, watching from the porch, witnessing Sam's collapse.

The two were finally able to wrestle Sam into the back seat, and were soon rushing back to the hospital. Grabbing her keys, she followed behind.


"Well, we had to replace a few of his internal stitches, and stop some bleeding, but he should be alright," Dr. Stevens said. "We're just going to have to keep an eye on him so he won't pull that stunt again."

"I think I can keep a well enough eye on him Doc," Dean said, lowering his voice. An image of Sam strapped to the bed flashed into his mind and he couldn't quell the spark of anger that ignited low in his gut.

"Of course you can Dean, we all will," Jim said, coming up behind him.

"You may go see him now, though he may be a bit groggy."

"Did you get a hold of my dad?" Dean asked as soon as they were alone.

"Yes. Dean, I'm sorry," Jim said, lowering his eyes.

"He's back to hunting, isn't he?"

"Yes. After he heard that we'd found Sam..."

Dean sighed. He suddenly didn't have the energy to be angry at his father, hell, he'd almost expected it. "We just won't tell Sam yet."

"Dean?" Sam's weak voice came from the bed when they entered his room.

"You gave us quite a scare young man," Jim gently scolded.

"I'm sorry."

"Just don't do it again," Dean warned.

"I won't. I don't know what I was thinking."

"It's alright, I should have been keeping a better eye on you."

"You're not my babysitter," Sam said before he could stop himself.

"Well apparently right now you need one. I mean, what the hell possessed you to drive off-in my car-and then take off on foot? If Jessica hadn't found you…you could have died!"

Sam had almost forgotten he'd taken the Impala. What had he been thinking? When he tried to think back, a fog hazed over his mind. What would possess him to take his brother's most prized possession?

"Sammy, it's alright. Just don't do it again, or you owe me a wax job."

Sam nodded, recognizing his brother's subtle way of trying to calm him down and dismissing the problem. "Just get some sleep Sam."

"No prob," Sam muttered, already half asleep. He didn't even hear the sound of Dean pulling up a chair.

"You've been a lot of trouble to us kid," a voice growled. Sam spun, but couldn't see it's source.

"You're going to pay," another voice added, clearly female.

"Who are you?" he demanded, squinting into the darkness. The last thing he had seen was Dean…and the hospital…

"Constance was our sister," they replied, voices combining.

Sam scoffed, and continued to peer into the darkness. He had to get a lock on where the enemy was, but the voices echoed around him, making it impossible to pinpoint their location.

"You find it so hard to believe she was family?"

"You guys aren't exactly known for your loving side," he bit back.

"I didn't know he had a sense of humor left. Didn't know he had much left of anything. Constance did her job well."

"What are you talking about?"

"Been missing something, Sammy?"

"Don't call me Sammy."

"Ah, but there is that left. Anger. You feel it, don't you? Raw, pure anger. It's eating away at you. It will kill you."

"Go to hell!"

"Why must you humans use that line? Hell really isn't that bad."

The intermingled voices of his invisible enemies were starting to give him a headache.

"So you are big, bad demons, huh? Trying to scare me?"

"You can't even feel fear anymore, so we aren't wasting our time. I guess Constance got in one last little jab before you took her out."

"What are you talking about? What did she do to me? And you? You're going to be chicken sts and stay in the shadows. You guys are real disappointments to your profession, ya know that?"

"Why you little…you have no idea who you're dealing with!!" The voices halted for a moment, and he heard a sigh. "When she banished you to hell in her place, she took a piece of you. Undoubtedly you had a period of numbness, and then the extreme rage you are experiencing now. See, the human psyche has a funny way of compensating. When you couldn't understand what was happening, you subconsciously substituted that numbness with the only defense mechanism you had left: anger. Constance was always quite brilliant when it came to playing with the mind. She was one of us, and now you're going to pay."

"Blah blah blah…you're the supposed great "Ancients" no doubt."

"Anger really doesn't suit you Sam," the voices returned, calm once more. "You should leave that forte up to your brother."

"Don't even talk about my brother," Sam all but screamed. The rage clawing at him was unbearable, he didn't know how much longer he could keep it contained. He couldn't even remember why he was so angry. He had remembered feeling a little mad when he had finally been released from torment, but he didn't know when it had become uncontrollable. He'd even been numb for a while, not feeling a thing. He guess Constance really had done a number on him.

"Aw, what's the matter little Sammy? Did we say something to make you mad?"

"Don't…call…me…Sammy…" The rage was liquid fire in his veins. Any more and he knew he would be consumed by it.

"Sammy." The name echoed through the darkness, taking on a new voice. The voice belonged to Dean. "I can't help it; you're such a little kid still." A figure appeared finally. The voice…the stance…the figure in front of him was Dean. "I mean, come on, you constantly need my protection. You haven't grown up enough to be promoted to Sam."

"Shut up. You're not him."

"Oh, but I am. And you know what little Sammy?"

Sam stayed silent. He couldn't let these things, whatever they were, get to him.

"I'm glad Jessica died. She was too good for you and it saved her from you."

The liquid fire ignited, consuming Sam in a blaze of heat and pure rage. His vision clouded, and he was staring at Dean's figure through a red filter.

"Big mistake" was all he could get out.

Sam closed his eyes, and released the anger consuming him. He heard screeching in the distance, and opened his eyes just to catch sight of two figures explode into a cloudy mist. A third figure, eyes widened, turned and ran. He tried to direct the waning rage at the third figure, but couldn't seem to muster up the energy to stop him.

Blackness consumed him once more, and he was at peace.

"How ya feelin'?" Dean asked as he watched Sam's eyes open.

"Better," Sam said, actually telling the truth.

"Good, I don't think I can take the food here much more. The cafeteria is downright scary."

Sam let out a loud laugh. The slight pain that lanced across his chest couldn't stop the feeling of joy that passed through him. He could feel again.

"You sure you're feelin' alright?" Dean asked, startled by the laugh.

Throwing another lopsided, dimpled grin at his brother, he replied, "Never better."

"Feel like eating something?" Dean asked, relief immeasurable in his voice.

"Yeah, I am kind of hungry," Sam admitted.

"Alright, I'll be right back. But I warn you, I wasn't kidding about the scary food," his brother replied, turning to leave. They shared a smile, and Sam kept it on his face until Dean was gone.

As soon as he was gone, Sam tilted his head back, closed his eyes, and swallowed hard. The truth was, he wasn't sure if he was alright. The intense anger he had felt was gone, but the cold hollow feeling was returning. And what the hell had happened? Where had he gone to?

He remembered how they had called themselves the Ancients, and how they had threatened revenge. He wondered why they had been so insistent on revenge, when they themselves had banished Constance. He guessed it was because demons would look for any excuse to go off on a killing rampage, and the thought of revenge made it more fun.

Sam sighed and opened his eyes, focusing on the small holes in the ceiling above him. He would continue to try to fight to get better, and he would adopt the mask his brother loved to put on so much, the "I'm fine" mask. He wouldn't let Dean know how shaken and rattled he was on the inside. Dean would just insist on coddling him, even if it was in Dean's on special way, but they couldn't afford it.

They couldn't afford a distracted Dean.

So for now, Sam would smile and laugh, would continue to take the appropriate jabs when his brother called for them, he would continue to be the 'geek' of the team, and he would continue to just take one breath at a time. He would do it, for Dean.

Ok, I know I uploaded this in an insane amount to time...but I procrastinated a little too long, and I wanted to get this up now haha. So hopefully you all enjoyed. I'm going to try to get Stone Cold up, which is a finished story, but I may not be able to. But I'll try...

So thanks for reading, and thanks for following along. See you all soon. :)