A/N: Okay, so I woke up with a start last night with this drabble/tag to AHBL2 on my mind. Just had to get it out, I guess. Feel free to hate, or ignore. But if you want to make my day…review.
TIME RUNNING OUT
Rain was pouring down and Sam could barely see the road ahead. The fog lay heavy and the shadows of night were slowly closing in. In the passenger seat Dean had finally fallen asleep and was sitting head tilted to the side, resting against the window with his mouth open and drool dripping from his bottom lip. A soft snore made Sam turn to look at his brother. Eyebrows furrowing he studied his brother for a moment before shifting his attention back to the road. He ran a hand through his dark, unruly hair as a deep shiver ran through his body.
It was cold. Cold out, and cold in. Cold followed them everywhere. Cold was a constant in their lives. It had been for a while now. Dean's time was almost up and the cold, - what a cosmic joke since Dean would soon be burning in hell - Sam thought, was probably the demons cruel way of reminding them of the fact. Dean was always cold, freezing and shivering both day and night, lips even turning blue at times. Nothing helped against it. The heater was turned to max in the car. Dean was wrapped in every piece of clothing they owned. But still it was cold as ice, cold as death when death makes its presence known. Sam was wearing a t-shirt and his favorite jeans, because - hell - he was cold too and he couldn't help Dean if he froze to death.
He was surprised his brother could still sleep with Death on their heels and a freezing cold tearing at them. Sam sure as hell couldn't. He'd stay awake for days on end until he was so exhausted he could no longer fight it and then, only then, he would sleep. Then he would sleep until the nightmares came. The nightmares as it were, were not about Jessica, they were not of people dying and needing to be saved...but about Dean and hell and hell's fire. He'd wake with a start and see Dean smirking at him. Smirking, because Dean was still Dean and Dean was an ass.
Sam was pissed at him for selling his soul, pissed at him for acting like it didn't matter, but most of all he was pissed at himself for dying. Pissed that he'd turned his back to Jake and pissed at having been stabbed in it. 361 days had passed since he'd misjudged a situation and gotten his stupid ass killed. And 360 days had passed since Dean did the unspeakable and inexcusable and signed a deal to end his own life and let his soul be violated by evil. For all eternity. And all for Sam. And Sam couldn't understand it, because to Sam, Sam was nothing.
How could his brother do it? It wasn't right. And it sure as hell wasn't fair. But when had life ever been fair to the Winchesters. When had things ever run smoothly? When had there ever been a happy ending? Never.
His reverie was broken by a soft groan and quickly his eyes darted to the sleeping form of his brother. Dean was still, apart from all the shivering of course, seeming to be in deep sleep. Sam reached out and touched his forehead lightly, tenderly - something Dean would've killed him for had he been awake. His brother was freezing cold and his skin was damp from a cold sweat. Sam felt his eyes water and his throat constrict against the pain and sadness that suddenly filled his heart. Give him three seconds and he'd be crying like a baby.
Dean's brow furrowed instantly and Sam couldn't help but give a small smile. Even in his sleep Dean was in protective mode. Would that burdening and firm sense of responsibility ever release its clutch on his brother? Probably not. It was what made Dean Dean and Sam had always feared the love his brother had for him would subsequently lead to his death.
5 days. 5 days left and Sam had tried everything. Everything. He'd given his all. But Dean hadn't. Dean hadn't done a thing to help. Sam didn't understand it, couldn't accept it. He had yelled at his brother for it.
He didn't know. He didn't know that Dean was only keeping his end of a cruel bargain. 'Try anything, anything at all, and Sam will drop dead,' the demon had told his brother. And Dean couldn't have that. Wouldn't have that. Because to him his life wasn't worth anything if Sam wasn't in it.
But in his sacrifice Dean had been blind to the fact that his brother felt the same. Because now Sam was the one suffering, the one fearing his brother's death and losing his will to live. Because, like Dean, Sam didn't think life was worth living if his brother wasn't in it.
So there he sat in the dark and the rain, on the road inside a black Impala, with his brother slowly dying beside him. And he'd stay there. Even with the cold fingers of a red eyed demon closing round his heart and slowly squeezing the life out of him, he would fight. He'd fight for five more days. And then...