And All was Right with the World
Father's Day (And All That Leads Up to It)
Sam was brooding, Jessica could tell by the way he hunched over the small counter space they owned and laboriously worked a massive bundle of dough both her and Sam had worked on a few hours previous. It wasn't that he was showing it too much; it was only the slightest tension between the shoulder – evidenced by the taught muscles in his arms and how he furrowed his brow.
He did that a lot, knitting his brow together in concentration, or while he studied – but this was different, and it told tales Jessica would have to be patient about to hear. However, it was there, and Jess was a smart girl.
Put two and two together.
It was the Friday before Father's Day, and in their homely apartment style kitchen Sammy Winchester stood – baking a honey walnut loaf of bread with raisins baked right inside for Jessica's father. He was with Jessica when she picked out Father's Day gifts and cards from the local Hallmark store, and even wrapped it while Jessica ran to the store to get ingredients for the bread.
Jessica hardly knew anything about the infamous John Winchester. All she could gather from Sam was he didn't like that Sam went to college and that he was a widow – what she gathered from the lone photograph that Sammy had of his parents was that they were happy and then something terrible happened.
Sam had told Jessica that things had been fine, his dad out of the military working in a shop him and his friend owned. John had a beautiful wife waiting for him at home and a mischievous and wonderful son named Dean, with another baby on the way. Then Sam was born. Then Mary died.
"It's not that I hate my Dad… I don't," he reassured her one evening when she had pressed the issue. "It's that… after Mom died I don't think he was capable of being a Dad anymore. He wouldn't be able to play catch with Dean, or be the coach of some freaking little league team. It wasn't right. It wasn't normal how Mom died, so he wouldn't… couldn't… do normal anymore. We called him Dad, but we answered to him as Sir."
"Hey Sammy? I think that's good enough to put in the oven to bake now," Jessica said, placing her hand up onto Sam's shoulder to get his attention.
"Sorry," he smiled boyishly, "Just getting into to it you know?" He brushed his hands off on the kitchen towel and kissed Jessica on the lips. She smiled back at him and beamed. When Jessica took over the baking Sam went to the refrigerator and grabbed a cola and sat down on their couch. "Have you finished packing yet Jess?" He asked.
"Yep, just need to wait for this to finish, oh, and I reset the voicemail to say where we were in case anyone needed to know," she said distractedly as she used one hand to open the oven and the other to precariously place the loaf inside without fumbling the contents. As she started cleaning up the kitchen she called over to Sam, saying, "Are you going to call your father?"
Jessica met with uncomfortable silence, which couldn't be mistaken for anything except a "no" she grabbed herself a cola like Sam did and flopped down beside him, nestling her body up against the young man's.
"It'll be nice, to get away for a little bit and spend sometime with my family. Dad's looking forward to fishing with you, but personally I just can't wait to eat something besides college food," she tried to make conversation.
Sam grinned, "Does your father know that I've never fished before in my life?"
"All the better," Jess smiled, "He wanted sons, and instead he got three daughters."
The two laughed quietly for a moment before Sam finally said, "Yeah, you were Daddy's little girl weren't you? Learning how to fish and shoot a gun?"
Jessica tilted her head to the side, "There is nothing wrong with knowing how to shoot a gun Mister. I'll show you a thing or two when we make it up to my ranch. And I bet you were just as fond of your father as I was of mine growing up."
Sam sighed, "You know what I meant… my Dad never won Father of the Year if you catch my drift.
"Well… I hope you'll like my father. I've told him all about you and he sounds like he's anxious to meet you. When Janine brought a guy home the first time Dad ended up hating the guy, something about being a hotshot pretty boy. She'll never live it down, the poor guy got tossed out of the house so fast Dad didn't even have to pause the movie he was watching."
Sam gulped, "I hope your father likes me too."
"He will," Jessica reassured him, "That's why I made the bread."
Dean closed the trunk of the old car and stalked over to the driver side door. He sat down heavily into the upholstery and tapped the steering wheel impatiently as his mind processed what had happened on the last hunt.
The older brother hadn't intentionally set the house on fire, after all, he had meant to torch were the decaying remains of a nasty spirit. It was the spirit's own damn fault that it knocked over Dean's can of light fluid and an old oil lamp.
Dean would have been pissed if he hadn't moved out of the way in time. That would've been a fun thing to explain to his father. Yeah Dad? I kinda was toasted by a spook so I'm not going to be able to make it to Springfield by Tuesday. Or better yet, a doctor calling Jim saying, how do you like your steak? Medium or well done because I say you're friend's son has just been seared to a crisp.
The young man hated fire, Dean was prepared to die for his family, and for innocent lives, but when it came to fire there was nothing he was afraid of more.
It was going to be a pain in the ass to explain to his father how he "successfully" got rid of the spirit, thankfully he hadn't left any evidence to connect him to the incident. Probably would go down in the book as a couple of teens hanging out in an abandoned ancient house being stupid and catching the place ablaze. It really wasn't as bad as it sounded.
Dean flipped his phone open and scrolled through the contacts. Bobby. Caleb. Cassie. Dad. Jim. Joshua. Sam…
It was summer, Sammy was probably working odd jobs to help pay for a place in Palo Alto. That would've been bad. Dean shook his head to rid himself of the image of his father calling his estranged son to be at Dean's funeral because he burnt up.
But than again, John wasn't the funeral type. There was something almost romantic in the way that Dean's final rites would be administered like heroes of old on a grand funeral pyre.
Sammy wouldn't want that, he would want a headstone for Dean. At least, that's what Dean hoped. "Dean Winchester. Son and Brother. January 24th, 1979 – June 15th, 2005." That's all that's needed. Maybe Dean should tell his brother to put something about demons too – throw the people randomly looking at graves years from then for a loop.
He turned on the radio in the Impala and the loud station jockey blasted, "Well I hope you all remembered to get something for dear old Dad! Before I head out I just wanted to remind you that if any of you, like myself, have a father wish him a rocking Father's Day. In fact! Why don't you guys bring Dad down to…"
Dean shut the radio off.
The Winchester's really never celebrated Father's Day. With them, Dean always made an effort to take some part of holidays that fell during the school year, because there was no way to avoid them. Little kids would pester him and his little brother about why they didn't have a big turkey dinner at Thanksgiving, or why they didn't barbeque on Labor Day, or… the worst… why Dean and Sam didn't have a Mom to celebrate on Mother's Day.
Father's Day was during the summer, so Dean didn't worry about it, and his dad never brought it up.
Dean dialed Sam's phone, reaching his voicemail.
"Hi! This is Jess and Sam. We're at my Dad's house for Father's Day and we'll be back Wednesday. Call us on Sam's cell if you need us for anything or if it's an emergency. Thanks a bundle and have a great week! See you Wednesday, bye!"
The older brother closed the phone.
He needed to meet his Dad in Springfield, no sense wasting time leaving Sam a message about Father's Day that he wouldn't listen to.
Dean had called, while John was in the middle of a pool game. His son had said he would meet up with John at Springfield in less than an hour.
John took another sip of his beer as he listened to the voice message again. "Hey Dad, calling you to check in. I'll be at your motel in a little under an hour. Wanting to wish you a Happy Dad's Day. Hope the spirits are treating you right. Be there in a bit. Bye."
Happy Dad's Day.
That's what Mary had used to say to him when Dean was younger. It was never the proper Father's Day, because Mary hated to be called Mother, so the same belonged to both of them. Dean hadn't said Dad's Day in years and he couldn't remember a time when his youngest had ever said that in passing like Dean just did.
He downed the rest of the mug and motioned the bartender for another round.
John had missed Dad's Day. Truth be told, he didn't really feel like he deserved it. Nonetheless, he was glad Dean remembered, because John wasn't sure how many more he would live to see. He was starting to see things, see patterns. The thing that took his wife was leaving things, almost too easy to find, for John to follow and track.
Time to step it up, he told himself, they're big boys now and can face things on their own. Time for him to be a father and let them go.
John would hunt the son of a bitch down, for all the Mom's and Dad's Days that him and his wife missed.
Disclaimer: I don't own anything you'd recognize. I would certainly love to borrow Jensen or JDM or Jared for a little while, but that isn't going to happen much to my chagrin.
Author's Note: This is a series of "oneshots", (not all are true oneshots, many being two, or three parts) written by an extremely tired writer wanting nothing more than to curl up with nice cold lemonade and watch Deadliest Catch all morning. Some are serious, my take on explaining things about the series, emotions running high like Sam leaving for school, or the first time Dean leaves Sam alone. Others not so much, being fluff, happiness and rays of sunshine moments in my constructed life for the Winchesters, such as when John meets Mary, and Sam's first day of college. Some of them are entirely parody, making fun of myself and other fanfiction writers incessant need for genre fiction, like Sam getting kidnapped... again… but look at them as they are – humorous, with a side of parody.
If you have an idea for a chapter (or series of chapters) please leave a review. I'll try to do as many as I can.