Disclaimer – Not my characters, I just use them improperly.
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Okay, here is the final part to this story; it's only short I know, but it seemed like a good way to end it :) I know I said I'd post earlier but I've been having internet problems :( So I shall get right on answering everyone's lovely reviews, and I hope you all enjoy the epilogue! Let me know what you think!
Sam lay on the bed, his head pillowed on Dean's stomach. The soft cotton under his cheek was thin, the skin underneath warm and comforting with the steady rise-and-fall of each breath his brother took. He watched through half-slitted eyes, watched as everything in the room seemed to move up as Dean breathed out, down as he breathed in. It was fascinating, and he felt like he could spend hours just looking at the dresser with its display of bright yellow flowers and the interesting shadows it painted on the wall.
Dean's mind was still in sleep, no worries rattling around and turning everything dark and tense. Half-seen dreams fluttered above the bed in muted colours, tossed in the air by an unfelt breeze. Sam didn't delve too deeply into them, content to let them drift in time with Dean's breathing.
Dean's wet cheeks had been the thing that made it all real again. Dean had been sitting opposite Sam, tears running down his face and comprehension in his eyes, and Sam suddenly realised just what it was that he'd done.
He'd tried before, so many times, tried so hard to make everything work as it should. He'd pushed and pulled and hammered at parts of himself until he was screaming silently in his mind. All for Dean. Sometimes, when one of his more lucid moments had snuck up on him, Sam had wondered if it was all worth it. If maybe it wouldn't be better to just give up. But Dean was worn bloody beneath his skin, and Sam was his brother. Sam had to make it right because that's what brothers did.
So he tried harder, using Dean's pain and fear to guide him into what he should be. And finally, finally, he figured out how it all worked. And he showed it to Dean.
There should have been a flare of triumph, he thought. He should have felt ecstatic; he'd done it, he'd fixed himself. Give or take a few missing parts still drifting in his atmosphere like scattered debris. But seeing Dean's awed face, and seeing the tears that followed, all he could feel was a kind of hesitant gladness.
He wondered if that was it. If every crazy thing he'd seen in the ocean of bright colours was gone from him. He knew with innate certainty that he'd never be able to go back there again, and most of him was thankful. But the part of him that was just now creeping back, the part of him that had lost his girlfriend and his friends in a fire, lost any chance of going back to school and being a normal person, that part almost wished he could forget himself again. He'd liked the simplicity the colours had brought him.
But in a choice between his brother and madness he'd chosen his brother, and he couldn't bring himself to regret that.
A smile tugged at his lips, rough and strange on a face that was unused to the expression. Being human brought confusion, he remembered. Being human meant he had to make decisions, feel worry and uncertainty and fear. But it also meant he could lie here and feel his brother's skin beneath his fingertips. The choice was worth it.
Dean mumbled in his sleep, his hand curling in Sam's hair. The faint scritch of nails against his scalp brought the urge to push back into that petting hand. Dean sighed; pressed harder like he was trying to reassure himself Sam was still there. His dreams felt like moths stroking Sam's face.
Sam could read the thought from his brother's head, if he wanted. He chose not to.
John stopped outside Missouri's guest room, his hand halfway to the doorknob. His boys were in there and he couldn't quite bring himself to face them again. Missouri told him they loved him, told him Sam loved him, but still. He'd kept them apart when they should have been together, tried too many times to count to break that mysterious hold Sam seemed to have over Dean. But a part of him had always known they came as a package; SamandDean against the world. And maybe he shouldn't have fought so hard against it.
He opened the door a crack, sending a beam of light across the darkened room. It cast pale illumination onto the bed and John blinked, for a second not quite sure what he was seeing.
Dean was lying on his back on the bed. His were eyes closed, his face young and somehow fresh in sleep. Sam was curled up beside him like a cat, his head on his brother's stomach. One hand was splayed across the bare skin where Dean's shirt had ridden up at his side. As John watched, Sam's eyes flickered open, meeting his own steadily for a long moment before drifting shut again.
John stepped back and closed the door quietly, feeling like he'd intruded on something private, a voyeur to something so intimate it couldn't be put into words. His heart was racing.
But that same intimacy that felt like a slap in the face was also, oddly, a reassurance. It felt right to see his sons together, peaceful at last. It felt like he could walk away now. Because if he'd done one perfect thing in his entire life, it was those boys. And if it meant going on alone he would, secure in the knowledge that in the world of SamandDean at least, everything would be okay.