The Only Game:
Sam sat with his knees pulled up to his chest and his head buried in his arms, he didn't know how long he had been sitting there sobbing and he didn't care.
"Sam?" A distant voice called causing Sam's head to shoot up.
No, it was just the wind, he was imagining things...watching your teammate being eaten by a ravenous bear could do that to you.
"Sam!" The voice was clearer now, more than just a whisper in the wind.
Sam got to his feet, but the pungent metallic odor made Sam lightheaded. Sam staggered to the front opening.
"Dean!" He called his voice didn't seem to carry.
Sam shucked in a deep breath and mustered up all of his remaining strength. "DEAN!" After expelling all the air from his lungs, he crumbled to the ground.
He smiled softly when he saw his big brother running towards him. Dean was on the ground next to him in mere seconds.
Dean grabbed Sam by the shoulders, taking in the blood that was covering his baby brother's bare chest and jeans. "Sammy, where are you hurt?"
"I found him Dean...he-he's..." Sam couldn't bring himself to say it.
"Is he hurt Sam? Where is he?"
Sam looked down at the ground and shook his head. "He's dead."
Dean gaped. "Dead? Are you sure?"
Sam laughed—was he sure?! The boy had died in his lap; he was covered with the boy's blood.
Dean was concerned by Sam's response to his question. "Sammy? Hey kiddo, tell me what happened."
Sam just looked at him for a moment. "There-there was b-blood on this rock and I saw... something."
"What'd you see?"
"I don't know...it was weird, it was like a dream or something, but I was awake...it seemed so real—it was real." Sam got frustrated as he tried to explain what had happened to him when he smelt the blood.
"Whoa, settle down Kiddo. Breathe." Dean said. "Did you hit your head?"
Sam shook his head. "No...just—never mind." Maybe it was best if Dean didn't know. "I found the blood and I told Alan to go get you." The tears started again. Sam couldn't go on, couldn't tell Dean what he had seen.
"Hey, hey." Dean said pulling his brother into his arms, rocking him and shushing him.
Dean didn't know what to think, his brother was covered in blood, telling him that a boy was dead. Where had things gone so wrong? They were just carrying out an innocent tradition handed down to them by the generations before them.
Dean could still remember his freshmen year, sure, the initiation had sucked, but it was harmless.
"Help will be here soon Sammy. I heard the cars coming a while ago. It might take them a while to hike out here though..." Dean told Sam.
Sam wasn't comforted by the news though, after all, what we're they going to do? Mike was already dead.
"Sam?" Dean dreaded asking but he knew he had to. "Where'd you leave... where'd you leave the body?" Sam pointed toward the space between the boulders. Dean started to pull away from Sam and he stood up. "I'm just gonna—"
"No!" Sam shouted. He jumped to his feet and tried to get Dean away from the boulders. "Don't!"
"Sam I need—"
"You don't wanna go in there Dean—please just stay here...it's bad."
"Sam, tell me what happened to him."
"B-bear, a bear...got 'im."
Dean nodded he wasn't entirely sure how to respond to that. "Did you see it?" Dean asked.
Sam nodded. "I followed the blood here and I saw the bear."
"What did you do?"
"I throw some rocks at it to make it stop...to make it leave Mike alone, then I hit it with a branch and it ran off."
Dean was so relieved, he was so glad it hadn't been Sam, was that wrong to think? He didn't care, he would say it again, he was so glad it wasn't Sam.
"So all that blood...it's Mike's?—except your face." Dean said. He gently turned Sam's head so he could get a better look at the marks on his face, he decided they weren't serious.
"Well..." Sam turned his arm so that Dean could see the deep claw marks.
"Damn it Sammy!" Dean pulled off his shirt and wrapped it tightly around Sam's upper arm.
Sam watched Dean dispassionately, his mind wondered back over the day's events. He started to shake violently.
"Sammy? What's wrong?" Dean asked. He looked into his brother's pale face. Sam's face was covered in dirt and blood, the only clean part of him was the trial the tears had made down his cheeks when they escaped from his eyes.
"I couldn't help him Dean."
"Of course you couldn't Sam. You didn't know this was going to happen."
"I knew something was going to happen. I shouldn't have let them stay out here."
Dean sighed. "That dream was just a coincidence, it didn't mean anything."
"Sure." Sam agreed listlessly.
"We have to get outta here."
"No." Sam said bring his knees to chest and laying his head on them.
Dean gently tugged Sam's arm. "Come on, Sammy. What if that freakin' bear comes back?—we don't have a gun or anything."
"I don't care."
"Damn it Sam!" Dean grabbed Sam's uninjured arm and started to pull him to his feet.
"No!" Sam yelled pulling his arm from Dean's grasp and sat back down.
"We can't just leave him out here..."
Dean was about to argued further when he saw rescue team coming towards them. There was no way to get a vehicle out to where they were, so they were all on foot.
"Hey!" Dean called to them waving his hand in the air. "Over here!" The rescue team hurried over to the boys.
"Are you boys okay?" One of the rescuers asked. "The paramedics are right behind us."
"My little brother is hurt." Dean cleared his throat. "We already found the kid...he's dead." Dean explained keeping a tight hold on distraught brother. Dean nodded towards the two boulders. "He's in there."
"My name is Jerry we're here to help you, can tell me what happened?" One of the men asked, while others went to the boulders.
"Bear attack, my brother said." Dean answered. Sam didn't even bother to look up at the men; he kept his face buried in Dean's shoulder.
Another man who had gone into the opening reappeared beside them, walkie-talkie in hand. "We need a body bag." The man looked at Jerry. "The kid's half eaten."
It seemed like forever before the paramedics arrived, the journey had been slowed considerably because of the gurney they were carrying with them. They got Mike's body in a body bag and wrapped up Sam's arm with instructions to get to the emergency room ASAP for a proper cleaning and stitches.
Only after the body was gone, did Dean look in the opening. There was blood splattered everywhere and he couldn't imagine what Sam seen.
John had met the boys in the emergency room. The doctor had just finished the stitches in Sam's arm and had bandaged it; he announced that there was no sign of severe muscle damage. He also cleaned the superficial graze on Sam cheek.
"Keep the wound clean and dry. It's important that you keep a close eye on his arm to make sure that it doesn't get infected, animal claws are known to carried all kinds of bacteria." The doctor told them.
"We will." John agreed. "Come on boys, let's get outta here." He wrapped his arm around Sam who had been given an over sized hospital gown as a temporary replacement for his shirt. Dean only had a tight white wifebeater on since he had sacrificed his shirt to make a bandage for Sam, not that it matter much, it was 102 degrees outside.
Both boys were dirty beyond belief, they cleaned up the best they could in the bathroom at the hospital, but their jeans were caked with dirt and Sam's were stiff with dried blood.
Dean wished John had thought to bring them extra clothes, but he knew that John's mind just didn't think that way.
Sam hadn't said a word since he and Dean had left the woods.
Dean had his arm wrapped around Sam's shoulders as they walked into the house. Sam seemed steady enough on his feet, but he was so pale and quiet that he had Dean worried.
John had taken them by the McDonalds drive thru on the way home, they hadn't eaten since breakfast that morning at 7:00am and it was now nearly 6:00pm. Sam wouldn't eat anything though.
The second the boys got through the door, Sam broke anyway from Dean and ran to his room. He didn't even bother to close his door, before he tore off his bloody pants and throw them on the ground. The blood had soaked through his jeans and had stained his legs.
He slipped out of the hospital gown and tossed it aside also, so he stood in only wearing boxers. John and Dean stood in the doorway.
"You okay Kiddo?" John asked gently.
"I need a shower." Sam replied plainly. He pushed past his Dad and brother and hurried down the hallway to the bathroom.
Sam stood in the shower, watching the blood stain the water as it dripped off his body. He watched thoughtfully as it went towards the drain.
He wondered if he should let the blood go down the drain. It was Mike's blood and he was just letting it go.
Mike was dead.
He knew that was true, but he couldn't seem to wrap his mind around it.
Mike's parents had lost a child today. Sam knew Mike's parents, Mike had three sisters, and he was the youngest. He was the only boy, his parents pride and joy and his sisters doted on him also. They must be devastated.
Sam hadn't known Mike very well. Sam had tutored Mike in math once, he was nice enough. He certainly hadn't done anything to deserve being mauled by a bear.
And he wasn't even going to think about that dream or vision...or whatever it was, that he had when he smelt that blood. In fact, he was just going to pretend it didn't happen. Dean and Dad never needed to know. If they did find out they might just stick him in looney bin.
Sam went over the day in his head again and again. He wanted to find something to blame this whole stupid day on.
"Ya know what?" He muttered to himself with a humorless laugh. "None of this would have happened if it wasn't for freakin' football."
God, he hated football.
Hey there friends,
Thanks for reading and reviewing I love hearing what you have to say. Sorry for the wait. I wanted to get this up before I leave town for a week, even though I just got back from an unexpected month long trip.
I hope you enjoyed the chapter and writer's block permitting, I'll have the next chapter up soon. And there might even be some football in it ;)!