Welcome back to another of my stories. It's set in Season three, but is mainly AU. Feedback is a huge encouragement and greatly appreciated.

Not Normal…Safe by Youngest Ones Rule

"So, what are you gonna do? You just gonna live some normal, apple-pie life? Is that it?"

"No. Not normal. Safe"

(Supernatural, Pilot)


Dean glanced nervously around; hoping the bag he carried would remain inconspicuous. He never in his wildest dreams could have imagined doing what he was about to do.

He'd laughed when Sam had described his own experiences with it to him. Sam had bought a similar, damn thing months ago. He claimed it had been invaluable to saving at least his own sanity during a dark time.

Dean slipped into his brother's room and before settling into the chair; gave his brother a careful once over. He hadn't wanted to leave his younger sibling's side, even for a short trip to the nearby store. He secretly hoped a miracle had occurred while he'd been gone, but Sam's condition seemed unchanged, from what Dean could tell anyway.

He settled himself in the chair and pulled the box from the bag. He fumbled with the shrink-wrap and tossed it to the floor. He removed the board and planchette and set it on the tray across Sam's bed.

"Ok, Sammy. It's been two days. I realize this might be some college-boy form of vacation." He coughed slightly, pushing back the emotion from his voice. "If that's true, and I'm not saying you haven't earned a break…" He shook his head. "You… Ya gotta let your big brother know. I… I need to know you're coming back."

Dean noticed he hadn't placed his fingers on the planchette. "Damn it." He moved his hands, scowling. "Sam, this isn't funny. Give me a sign here!"

Dean swallowed and held his breath. He had no idea how long a response took.

"Come on, Sammy." His fingers flexed and unflexed, but didn't leave the gliding tool. "Don't do this, Sam." He whispered.

He felt his breaths coming in gasps. "Damn it, Sam. You cannot leave me… not after… not after everything we've been through… all I've…" He couldn't finish. His arm shot out and sent the Ouji board violently crashing across the room.

"You can't leave me, Sammy." Dean clutched his brother's hand. The only sound in the room was Dean's tiny sobbing and the whoosh of the ventilator as it delivered air to Sam's lungs.

Dean was vaguely aware of the door opening behind him. He swiped at his eyes.

"Dean? Everything alright in here?"

Dean swallowed and took a deep breath before glancing over his shoulder to wave off Jane, a well-meaning nurse.

She stepped in and checked Sam's condition for herself. With a brief squeeze of Dean's arm, she left him alone again.

Dean shook his head. "How did we get here, dude?"

Chapter One

"No way, Dean! I can't even believe you think the cylons are hotter!" Sam groaned as he slammed the Impala's passenger door. "No frakkin' way!"

Dean smirked. "I can't believe you said 'frakkin'. Dude, you're such a geek."

Sam stared at his older brother in shock. "That's not the point, Dean. The Cylons tried to wipe out humanity. It is wrong on so many levels that Boomer and Six give you a hard on."

An elderly woman passing the brothers on the street gasped at Sam's language and rushed by him. Sam immediately blushed bright red and Dean burst into laughter.

Dean held his stomach and feigned a reprimand. "Watch your language, young man!" His smile wouldn't quit. A granny had just glared at his straight-laced brother. It could have only been made more perfect, had he opened the camera on his phone in time to capture the moment. It ranked right up there with the spoon in his mouth for memories.

Sam could only groan at his luck in life.

Dean glanced around to be sure no one would hear him. "The only hot human left is Starbuck. Now, if she turns out to be a Cylon…" He didn't complete his thought. He simply raised an eyebrow in confidence.

Sam got to the diner door first and pulled it open. "We hunt evil for a living and you pick the Cylons? I still say it's wrong!" His statement came out as a growled whisper.

Dean merely chuckled and took a seat at a booth facing the window. Normally, they opted for something in the back, but the diner was so small, it really didn't make a difference. Dean decided Sam might enjoy eating in the bright light from the window. His brother was going to have to learn how to live in the light again. He fully intended to make sure Sam promised to give up hunting once this was all over.

As soon as they were settled, a perky, young waitress swooped down on them. "Hey, guys. I haven't seen you two before. You move to town or just passing through?"

Sam smiled at his brother's reaction to the greeting. It only took a quick glance to tell the girl was completely Dean's type. Then again, Sam thought, what girl wasn't Dean's type? A small smile crossed his lips. It had been a long time since Dean had enjoyed some 'fun.'

They'd spent too many days fighting the demons released a few months ago. The war was on and there really hadn't been time for a break. The best they'd achieved in the way of relaxation was the SciFi channel. Dean loved to tear the shows apart. Of course there was also part of him that hoped they could actually learn something.

Sam pretended to watch. He spent his precious free time researching possible ways to save his brother from a destiny that loomed only months away. Dean had sold his soul to bring him back from the dead. Dean insisted there were no outs and Sam should give up, focus his efforts on something useful, but Sam couldn't. Dean had never given up on him and he wasn't about to give up on Dean. He just needed somewhere to start.

Dean refused to talk about it and Sam had given up pressing him. They made like nothing special would happen in ten short months.

Sam refocused on his brother's new hunt, nothing supernatural, simply biological.

Dean's entire body tapped into a private source of energy at the girl's greeting. His body, once tired and slouched, was now alert and in charm mode. "Well, we were just passing through, but if everyone here is as friendly as you are, we might have to reconsider." His eyes twinkled.

Sam rolled his eyes at the girl's reaction to the standard pick-up line.

The waitress beamed. "My name's Karla. Here's the menu." She handed them each one. "Everything's pretty good. I would avoid the meatloaf today though." She glanced over her shoulder toward the kitchen. "It's leftover from yesterday." She stepped back. "I can give you a few minutes, if you'd like."

Dean had already glanced through the menu and decided on his usual. "I'll have a bacon cheeseburger with fries and a coke." He smiled directly at her. He knew it was enough to make most women melt.

Sam might have groaned, but he was still enjoying the relaxing pause in their normal routine. "I'll have the chef salad and a lemonade."

Dean groaned. "You'll have to excuse my nature-boy brother. He doesn't know what's good for him."

Karla laughed. "His loss, right?" She left only long enough to put the ticket on the swivel rack for the cook. In an instant she was back at their table.

Sam got the feeling he wasn't welcome. He rubbed his hands together. "I think I'll wash my hands before the food comes." He scanned the diner for the lavatory signs and left Dean to his flirtation.

Just before he rounded the corner to his destination, he looked back and watched his brother in action. He sighed, knowing at the very least, they were in for an extended lunch. The way things were going, he half expected his brother to decide to find a motel for the night, for Sam at least.

Sam emerged a few minutes later and found no change in the scenery. There were no other customers in the diner, so Karla hadn't been compelled to move on to other tasks.

Sam moved slowly back to the booth. He wasn't in the mood to get mixed up in the seduction.

As he crossed the diner, he watched the world go by outside. Mayberry. That's what the town reminded him of. It seemed like a picture perfect environment, ready for a postcard.

The diner was on Main Street. Across from them were the standard businesses, a bank, an insurance office, a drug store and a hair salon. Sam ran his hand through his hair, briefly wondering if he should get a trim since it seemed he would have the time. He shrugged off the notion and let his eyes wander farther down the street.

The hair on the back of his neck stood on end. Before him, the older woman from earlier was being dragged into the alley. Her assailant had grabbed her mouth, leaving her unable to call for help.

Adrenalin rushed into Sam's system. "Dean! There's a woman being mugged across the street!" He said no more. In the next second, Sam was pushing through the door, running toward the street.

It took several moments for Sam's actions to register with Dean. In the confusion, he had to shove Karla out of the way to clear the booth.

Before Dean could fully exit the diner in pursuit of his baby brother, an incredible crash, followed by screams and at the same instant a sickening thud filled his ears. His eyes automatically looked to the noise and his heart stopped.

In Sam's haste to save the woman, he'd neglected to check traffic. A large, red construction truck had struck Sam. Hard.

Dean's feet were frozen. Before him, his brother fumbled on the dark asphalt. Blood obscured his face, flowing freely from a large wound in his head. It was obvious it had struck the windshield. What was also obvious was Sam's panic. He kept trying to rise on legs that wouldn't support him.

"SAM!" Dean's paralysis was finally ruptured and he ran to catch his brother who was again trying to rise. "Sammy!" Dean captured Sam's chest and brought him to the ground, where he cradled him against his own. He willed his beating heart to keep Sam's going as well. "Sam… Sammy… Calm down. Stay still. Help is on the way."

Dean looked around to be sure help was indeed coming. From the size of the crowd gathered and the number of cell phones he saw, he knew he was right. "It's ok, Sammy. You're going to be ok."

Sam's body stopped thrashing against his own and Dean looked down into his brother's half-opened, dull eyes. Come on, Sammy. No giving up. Not after everything we've been through. Not like this. Not in some freak traffic accident. I'm not spending my final months alone.

"Deeeaann." Sam's voice drifted to his ears.

"I'm here, Sammy. Hang in there. Help's on the way." Dean hoped his voice offered reassurance that wasn't currently in his heart.

"Wo.. man? Ok?" Sam sputtered. Each word send waved of agony through him.

Dean wanted to scream. He could hear the gurgling sounds coming from his brother's lungs. Sam's life force was bleeding out all over the street and the fool was worried about some old bitty? Damn him! Damn his gentle soul. "She's fine, Sammy. Your little stunt scared the bad guy away. You did good you big lug!" He hugged his brother a little tighter. He might have crushed him, had Sam not cried out in pain from the increased pressure.

"Good." Sam whispered. He coughed, spitting up blood.

What happened next would always be a blur to Dean. Emergency workers arrived and he felt himself being shoved aside as his brother's body was ripped from his arms. A tantrum unlike any other threatened to spill forth, but reason took hold and Dean simply followed the gurney bearing his brother.

The next memory he had was being gently pushed backward into a waiting room. "You need to let us help him. You'll have to wait here." Someone said it to him, but he had no idea whom.