Another oneshot. I know, I'm getting lazy. I have a very short attention span.
There's some language in this one. I seem to be getting coarser the older I get. Sorry about that.
Thanks to my beta Ali, always good to bounce ideas off her.
I'm not sure if this fic is crack, I'm a little unclear on the definition of crack, but certainly it's frippery, a bit of fun.
The best laid plans.
What a freaking disaster!
It's almost incomprehensible to Sam that this could go pear shaped. But you venture outside your comfort zone, try and involve yourself in things that are none of your business, and murphy's law pretty much tells you it's going to end in tears.
"Stop," Sam demands, his mood changing in an instant from resignation to irritation, to the strains of Marvin Gaye's 'Let's get it on'.
The woman looks at him uncomprehendingly, a little peevishly because he's been fighting her from the get go and it makes her job that much harder. Her oversized, grotesquely enhanced bosoms are tickling Sam's cheek, claustrophobically close to his face. They wobble gently as violent motion tries to become sudden stillness.
Sam grabs the woman's upper arms and moves her away, out of his face, so that he can see across the room.
She stiffens at his touch, he's broken the rules and she instinctively tries to shrug him off, but his grip is like iron and it scares her a little because the strength is unexpected, hidden beneath a babyish face.
"Son of a bitch," Sam mutters, and he's aware that the curse sounds not quite right coming out of his mouth, it's not his curse. But he's around it so much, hears it so often, that it is expelled easily. He pushes the woman off his lap, ignoring her surprised protests, and settles her on the bed beside him, not really caring if she's sitting or sprawled.
He jumps off the bed and hurries across the room to where his brother lays still on the motel room floor.
"Dean?" he whispers, and he's not exactly panicked, he's seen Dean unconscious more times than he can remember so it's a familiar sight, but it still causes a flutter in his chest because it's not a natural state of affairs, it's not a good thing that his brother is out for the count.
"Is he okay?" the woman asks, disinterest in her voice and Sam casts her a withering sidelong glance which he considers a suitable response to a stupid question.
He reaches his hand under Dean's head and winces when he feels a goose egg on his brother's skull. But there's no blood, which means his brother caught a break when he slammed his head against the table, it could have been worse.
"Hey." Sam lightly taps his brother's cheek, trying to annoy Dean back to wakefulness.
"Sooo…" from across the room the woman clicks her tongue impatiently. "Should I go?"
"Just give me a minute," Sam snaps, because he knows her next words are going to be, you owe me 50 bucks.
Dean groans and parts of his body spasm, like he's trying to move but can't quite coordinate himself. Sam rests his hand on his brother's chest, letting Dean know that he's beside him, but also placed to exert some pressure if Dean tries to rise before he's ready.
There's a string of curses as awareness barrels into Dean. He opens his eyes and looks at Sam in confusion, he's disoriented and not sure where the hell he is. Then a smile turns up his lips as memory comes flooding back. His focus shifts to the left, to the semi-naked woman sitting on the edge of the bed biting her nails, and laughter bubbles out of him, before it turns into a strangled moan as the act of laughing jolts his pounding head. Then it's a tug of war between wanting to laugh, and really wanting not to laugh which results in a kind of hiccupping that's almost as painful as laughing, until the agony has him silently begging for the mercy of unconsciousness again. He presses his hands to his head and has to push out of his mind the image of Sam floundering beneath a chubby woman grinding in his lap, pushing her tits into his face, before it kills him. He closes his eyes and does a mental stocktake of all the ammunition in their possession until the urge to laugh has passed.
Sam waits for Dean to pull himself together. He doesn't say anything, stifles the urge to apologise and just keeps his hand patiently on Dean's chest until Dean lowers his arms and struggles to get into a sitting position. Sam's resting hand curls into a vice like grip on the shirt and pulls slowly until the body underneath rises.
"No, no, no," Dean protests and Sam freezes, until he sees that Dean's attention is on the woman, who is now almost entirely clad in a police officer's uniform. "Don't go. There's still so much fun to be had."
She shrugs. "Sorry Tiger. But a lot of people want a piece of this action."
Sam doesn't look at her but he can hear the restlessness in the way her clothing rustles. She's ready to leave and the burning question Where's my money? hangs in the air. He props Dean against a dining chair, takes a little longer than necessary to make sure his brother's alright, letting her know that she's not the priority, then rises, fishes into his pocket for a fifty and thrusts it into her outstretched palm.
"That was..," awful he wants to say, but can't bring himself to be so honest, so just shrugs, gives her a tight smile, then turns away, effectively dismissing her.
She crushes the money in her hand with a sniff, like she's aggrieved, unappreciated, then grabs her CD player and exits, rolling her eyes at Dean on the way out as if they share the opinion that Sam is a complete pain in the ass, which he returns with a playful wink that makes her smile.
Sam ambles around the room making up an icepack and fetching some Tylenol, while Dean is content to remain seated on the floor, aware that movement will not be his friend.
"That was awesome," Dean says breathily. "I am never going to forget that."
Sam snorts. It was a frigging debacle. A disappointing culmination of his plans and he's as embarrassed as hell about it.
It had all been going so well. The day had been a triumph. Sam had put some real thought into Dean's birthday this year, because it could be Dean's last. And he doesn't want to believe that, doesn't want to get maudlin about it because there's still a good portion of the year left before the deal comes due and he believes he can find a miracle to save his brother, but he's a realist and he doesn't want to ignore the possibility that this could be Dean's last birthday.
For that reason the day had to be something special, above and beyond anything that had gone before. Many nights, over the last few weeks, Sam had lain awake seeking inspiration and ideas for what would take the day out of the ordinary, make it a standout from all the birthdays that had preceded, until eventually, it had occurred to him, that the best way to ensure Dean had a memorable day, was to indulge him in a few of his favourite things. When he searched for what those things might be, what made Dean happy, Sam came up with four certanties; weapons, his car, alcohol and women.
From those four things a plan of action was formed.
The first gift Sam bestowed upon his brother, early in the morning, was a black and white pearl handled automatic knife (the retailer's euphemism for a switch-blade), with an etched Damascus steel blade that made it a thing of beauty. Sam had been mesmerized by it, the etching was so delicate and intricate that you could stare at it for an hour and still be discovering new detail. It was a marriage of art and fierce weaponry. He knew Dean would love it, Dean could always find the beauty in a weapon. And he wasn't wrong. There had been much appreciative cursing when the gift was opened.
Sam figured his brother would assume that was it for the gifts, it would never occur to Dean that there might be more, they hadn't been a big present giving family growing up, a result of a lack of funds and a lack of sentimentality. It gave Sam a secret thrill that he had more planned and he had to keep his excitement in check during the day because he didn't want to tip his brother off.
The next phase of the plan had required some skill, Sam needed to take the Impala for a couple of hours, always a tough ask. They were in the middle of a job, which helped. Just because it was Dean's birthday, didn't mean there wasn't still work to do. They were in the research phase of a haunting and Sam had cannily suggested they split up, there was no danger in it and it would get the ground work done in half the time. He gave Dean the option of checking records or interviewing the elderly residents of a nursing home, both of which produced a grimace and a groan, but in a competition between research and geriatrics, research had surprisingly won. Sam dropped Dean at the library, then flagged the old folks and took the Impala to a nearby detailer with instructions to give the car the works. He'd stayed nearby while the car was being attended to, paranoid about anything happening to it, refusing to let it out of his sight.
The results had been spectacular, the car looked new, inside and out. When he picked Dean up a couple hours later, the older brother's jaw had dropped, he noticed the improvement immediately. Sam handed over the keys and Dean slapped him jovially on the arm, the macho equivalent of a hug, before sliding behind the wheel with a broad smile and appreciative nod. He sat in the car for a few minutes enjoying the renewal, appreciating the revival of his most cherished possession, stroking the interior tenderly, careful not to sully the pristine condition.
Two down and Sam was feeling confident, the day was working out beautifully, the gifts were connecting with Dean and it was all going to plan.
In the evening, they descended upon a trendy cocktail bar where Sam had called ahead and asked the barman to make up a cocktail especially for his brother. The barman had created a concoction which tasted like pineapple juice with a dangerous twist. It was ridiculously easy to drink and had been given the moniker Dean's Delight, an atrocious name that made Sam cringe in its unimaginitiveness. But Dean loved the idea of an alcoholic beverage bearing his name. Every time a pretty girl approached the bar to order a drink Dean would ask with the most innocent expression, "Are you going to order one of my delights? Because I taste good." And if he hadn't had that face he wouldn't have gotten away with it nearly as often as he did. But nine times out of ten the response was a playful oh really? and flirting ensued. It was an amazing game, one that Sam watched with bemused awe, his brother worked his charms in an easy and confident manner and consistently struck gold, phone numbers poured into his hands.
And Sam should have left the birthday surprises there. Lord help him, he should have left it there. The day had been a success, he'd hit three out of the park and that should have been enough. But he'd come up with four things that made Dean happy and it seemed incomplete if he didn't find a gift centered around the women part of the equation. He knew he was out of his depth in this area, considered leaving it alone but it seemed like a cop out not to make an effort. How hard could it be? Right?
As it turned out, it was the most difficult part of the whole day. If he'd been thinking, Sam would have arranged for it early, before they went out, but he wasn't thinking and he'd arranged for it later in the night, which meant he had to get a half cut Dean out of the cocktail bar and back to the motel prematurely. And man, it had been a struggle. Dean didn't want to leave. The drinks were exotic, the scenery was pleasing, everything was golden, why would he want to leave? Sam should have taken that as a sign from God, go with the flow young man, let the festivities continue. But he'd been blind to the hint. Sam kept an eye on his watch with increasing alarm, nudging Dean that they should go, until Dean began to get uptight about the pressure. In the end, Sam had to bang on a an illness to get them out of there, pretend he wasn't feeling well, which he hated doing because he didn't want to ruin the mood but he had no other choice, they had an appointment to keep, a final part of his plan to fall into place.
It was only a few minutes after they had arrived at the motel that there was a knock on the door. In a case of unfortunate timing Sam was on the other side of the room, so he wasn't able to beat his brother to answer. Dean opened to a female police officer and Sam frowned, finding her photo on the internet a little misleading.
It registered with Dean that the officer had an enormous cleavage that her uniform was hugging too tight, but it wasn't his predominant thought, mainly he was thinking that they could be in some trouble. She asked for Dean by his current alias, and it had Dean flicking through all the times he had used that alias, trying to figure out who might have called the cops, why they might have called the cops, getting an angle on whether he had a minor problem or a major problem.
He tersely denied that he was the person in question, and the woman's eyes narrowed to look past him into the room, where they alighted upon Sam.
"Uh, yeah," Sam said as he met her gaze, blushing furiously and tongue tied by his discomfort, fighting against a tidal surge of this was such a bad idea. His monosylabic answer was intended to convey yes she had the right place, yes she had the right guy, but she interpreted the response to mean that Sam was her customer, he was her target. She picked up a portable CD player, cued the music and sashayed into the room, past Dean and suggestively toward Sam, her body gyrating and thrusting as she moved.
After the initial shock, a head spinning moment of what the hell? Dean caught on. How could he not catch on when the policewoman was unbuttoning her blouse. He was flabbergasted that Sam had arranged a stripper. And then he was greatly amused, because Sam looked horrified, obviously he hadn't expected to be a participant in the show. Sam made some staccato objections of no...wait...I'm not...as the woman danced around him, brushed against him, and provocatively disrobed but she was undistracted, single minded in her delivery. Dean quickly got into the spirit of things and encouraged the woman with helpful suggestions such as, cuff him officer, don't let him get away and read him his rights, mirandize him good.
When she was down to her underwear she pushed Sam onto the bed and started dancing in his lap, and Sam had protested in alarm no, no, you've got the wrong guy, you've got the wrong guy. His eyes were wide with abhorrence, his hands were up trying to protect what was left of his personal space, he was hating every minute and Dean almost couldn't breathe he was laughing so hard. In his 28 years Dean could not recall a situation that could match this for humour, it was hands down the funniest thing he had ever seen.
The sustained mirth and a skinful of cocktails made Dean unsteady on his feet. He needed to find a prop to lean against and he reeled toward the table, his eyes not shifting from the entertainment, when his heel caught in a duffel laying on the floor causing him to lose his balance, topple like a timber and smack his head against the breakfast table, resulting in the stupor that has brought them to where they are now.
As Sam hands the pills and a glass of water to his brother and presses the icepack to the back of Dean's skull, he shakes his head ruefully at the way things turned out.
"Oh man, that was awesome," Dean murmurs, a smile breaking across his face. He chugs the pills with the water chaser, then there is a clumsy exchange as he hands the empty glass to Sam and takes over holding the icepack to his head. "That has got to be the funniest thing I've ever seen."
"Glad you enjoyed it," Sam retorts through gritted teeth, not in a bad mood, he can see the humour despite being mortified by the experience, but it's going to become one of those things that Dean refers to ad infinitum, remember that time?…man that was funny, and Sam is trying to make it clear up front that he really doesn't want to talk about it. Ever again.
At least if Dean does bring it up Sam can counter with I remember the part where you knocked yourself out like a moron. It's not so funny right now but it will be in a couple of days.
"You should have seen your face dude. I've never seen you so disgusted." Dean can't help but laugh again, he's going to be laughing about it for days, the replay running through his mind is priceless.
With one hand engaged at the back of his head Dean pushes himself off the floor and wobbles to a stand, grateful when his brother latches onto his arm to keep him steady. He is still for a moment, swaying slightly, as he waits for the dizziness to pass and he's irritated that he ended what was a great day by knocking himself out. What an idiot.
Sam doesn't suggest that they go to a hospital, even though he's thinking it would probably be a good idea. And kind of a fitting end to a day all about Dean. He makes sure his brother remains upright as they take the few steps to the bed and when they get there, Dean turns to him with a look of such warmth and affection that suddenly there's a lump in Sam's throat that he can't swallow past and it goes through his mind this had better not be his last birthday.
Dean brings his free hand up and loops his fingers around the back of Sam's neck with a strong grip, like a shorthand embrace, and he's lost for words. He wants to express how much he's enjoyed the day, how much he appreciates the thought that Sam put into it, how impressed he is by the trouble Sam went too, how undeserving he feels of all the consideration, but he can't find suitable words, there are no suitable words.
After a silent moment of looking at each other, really seeing and appreciating each other, raw emotion scrawled across both faces speaking louder than words ever could, Dean's hand travels up and ruffles Sam's hair like he's five, then shoves his head away.
They grin, the heavy emotion dispelled, and Dean lowers himself carefully onto the bed, tosses the icepack aside, considers removing the outer layers of clothing and decides fuck it, it's my birthday so just pries off his shoes before making himself comfortable.
"I can't believe you ordered a stripper," Dean chuckles.
"Me either," Sam agrees wholeheartedly. "I don't know what I was thinking. I'm pretty sure it won't happen again."
Sam unhurriedly prepares for bed. The cold sharp possibility that this time next year he may be alone jabs at his ribs and makes him move slower trying to prolong the day, live it to the full. It makes Dean suspicious. Sam looks like he's waiting for something or preparing for something, Dean can't quite figure out the motivation for the time wasting and worries that there may be another surprise afoot. But eventually Sam climbs into the adjacent bed and the lights go out.
Dean really wants to sleep, his head is pounding and he knows shutting down will fix that, but after about ten minutes of darkness he says, "You know I'm not going to be able to match that for your birthday." There's apology in his tone, Sam's birthday is still four months away and already he's concerned because he just isn't that thoughtful. He wishes that he was, he would love to be able to come up with something amazing for Sam's birthday, but he knows his limitations and it just isn't in him.
"Hey, nobody could match that," Sam says lightly. "It's unmatchable, so don't even try."
And he means it. He doesn't want Dean turning himself inside out trying to come up with some birthday extravaganza, it would be too out of character, kind of false if he did.
"Cool. Perhaps we'll just ignore your birthday altogether this year," Dean jibes, "make it easy on ourselves."
"I didn't say that," Sam answers.
He doesn't really want to talk about his birthday, because four months away means four months closer to the end of the year. He silently prays that he will have found the loophole by then, that Dean will be free of the deal. That would be the best gift he could receive, then they could really celebrate.
But Sam puts those thoughts aside for the moment, he's already dwelled on the deal more than he wanted, and he ends the day with, "Good night old man."
Dean huffs out a laugh. "Bite me whipper snapper."