"You don't have to handle this alone." – Sam Winchester, CSPWDT

Chapter Two - Pure Faith

I know Dean needed to believe. I wish I could have believed too, but something just seemed off. I'm not sure what, but somehow I knew this was too good to be true. Maybe it was the hunter's code Dad ingrained in us as kids; that at least one of us needed to stay detached, with a healthy skepticism… a critical eye. Maybe it was instinct or intuition. Whatever it was, it's kept us alive this long and that's saying something.

Maybe I was scared to believe. Maybe even a small part of me, like an infinitesimal part, was jealous that Dad might miraculously save Dean from beyond the grave when I'd been working my butt off for almost a year and couldn't do it.

No, that is not true.

Dean may have thought I was still butting heads with Dad, but that's not what this was about. Hell, I'd have welcomed the news if Dad could have actually saved Dean. After all, that's all I want… all I need.

Somehow, I just knew…

The fact is we had no hard proof and Dean had always needed proof before. This was totally out of character for him, but then again… our lives are weird and this last year has been even weirder. Stranger things have happened than Dean changing his mind about something.

The hurt in his eyes when I brought up the questions, my reservations, well… that just about did me in. I didn't want to hurt him, or doubt that he was acting rationally, but the truth was, he wasn't. He was going on blind faith.

I guess I can't blame him. He was desperate… I am too.

It just seemed like one of us needed to keep our wits about us. As much as we both wanted to believe, someone had to show restraint. Use a bit of caution before we got in over our heads. It's what Dad would have expected from us. Funny, that I was the one to follow Dad's wishes… yeah, real funny.

Dean was so willing to believe, to trust that there was a way out. I think back to all the times Dean had nothing to believe in. How he learned at four that angels weren't watching over him, that no one was. That we were on our own in this crap hole of a world.

That's a tough lesson for anyone to learn, let alone a four year old boy who just lost his mom.

Doesn't every little boy have the right to believe?

So Dean put his faith in Dad.

What you need to know, Sammy, is our dad's a superhero.

And he was… in Dean's eyes.

Dad was the only one Dean ever had to believe in so he did. He needed to know someone was watching over him, protecting him. I can't even imagine what it would have been like for him if he hadn't at least had that.

Dean had Dad watching his back and I had Dean. Now that Dad's gone I know Dean's felt this tremendous pressure to do it all. He'd always assumed the responsibility for protecting his family and especially me even before Dad died; but after… it was ten times worse and Dean had to deal with it all. And the burden was heavy: the weight of Dad dying and giving up his soul so Dean would live, the painful last order that he might have to kill his own brother if he couldn't save me, facing the demon's master plan for all the special children, and then me going and getting myself killed.

And now Dean's deal… one year and then an eternity in Hell. I know he's freaked out. I know him. I've been watching him since I was four years old and I can see how scared he is, and I really can't blame him. I mean… God, Dean… So, yeah, he wanted to believe and I took that away from him. And I am so sorry for that.

God, how I wish it had been true.

I guess a part of me always did resent Dean's blind faith in Dad. I know Dad tried, but the truth is we were on our own a lot. But honestly, looking back now, I totally get it. A son sees himself in his dad, and he needs to believe in him. See, I've always had faith in Dean. I guess you couldn't call it blind faith though 'cause I had plenty of reason to believe and not a single reason not to. I've seen Dean come through for me too many times for it to ever be called blind faith… it's pure. Pure faith, unwavering, dependable and true…

My whole life Dean's never let me down… ever. Dean's always been there for me, even when he should have died… even when I did die. You know, back at the hospital the Doc said Dean was fighting very hard but we needed to have realistic expectations... doctor's code for your brother's not going to make it. But even with a reaper stalking him Dean refused to let go 'cause his family needed him. But that's my big brother, my protector. That's what he does. He held on until Dad made the deal to save him.

And then I went and died and Dean was the ultimate protector, giving up his own life and soul for me. And he did it without any hesitation or regret. Dean did that… for me. He's always done whatever it took to take care of me.

I have to do the same now. Whatever it takes… I have to save Dean.

I've always had faith in Dean and now he needs to have faith in me. It scares the crap out of me, being responsible for Dean's life. But it's time; I'm not just the kid brother anymore.

Dad's not here and he's not coming. It's you and me, bro. And I am here and I am not letting go…

Together, if we just hold on, have faith in each other, we can beat this… I know we can 'cause there's no other option for us.

I have to have faith in that…

Call it blind faith if you will, but when it's Dean and me…

It's real…

It's pure…

It's undeniable.

It's us, and we're gonna make it, one way or another.

This time, big brother, I've got your back.

The End

bjxmas

May 2008

All standard disclaimers apply.