AN: Another quick oneshot for me. I know this scene has been done by many talented authors, but no one wrote the scene quite like this.
I don't own Supernatural and I'm not making any money off of this.
Dean and his father sat in the motel room waiting for the third member of their small family to walk in. Both older hunters had finished up at their respective medical centers and met back at the room, as decided earlier. John sat on one of the beds going over the list he had written out of children in their target age range. Dean sat at the small table, a similar list spread out before him.
"Dad, how are we going to figure out which kid the damn demon is going after?" Dean asked, frustrated and slightly irritated that Sam wasn't back yet.
"I don't know Dean, but we will figure it out." John replied. "We have to."
Dean looked over at his dad, hearing the muttered last sentence. He knew how much his Dad hated this demon and how much he wanted to stop it before it could put another family through the hell the Winchesters had gone through. Hell, Dean wanted to stop it to. His reasons were more about his own family though. Seeing the pain his father had gone through and, more recently, the pain Sammy had been experiencing. Not only Jessica dying, but now these damn visions.
Whenever Sam had one, Dean felt so helpless. There wasn't really anything he could do for Sam when one hit except hold his brother up and wait it out. And that didn't sit well with the protective older brother. He wanted to do something, find someway to stop them so Sammy didn't have to feel the physical pain or the emotional pain the content of the visions always seemed to bring in their wake. But he couldn't. All he could do was be there for Sam during it and nurse him through the aftermath.
Speaking of Sam, where was he? As it finally registered that Sam had been gone longer than he should have been, Dean reached for his phone.
"Where the hell is your brother?" he heard his Dad's irritated question from across the small space.
Dean looked over as he pushed the speed dial button for Sam, "I don't know, I'm giving him a call."
Just as the phone at his ear started to ring, the motel room door opened to reveal his little brother. Dean put the phone down on the table and stood up as Sam walked a few steps into the room and shut the door behind him.
"Sam! Where the hell…" he trailed off as he noticed Sam's posture and expression. It was one he knew all too well.
John impatiently read through his list for the twentieth time, shifting on the hard bed. He glanced across to see Dean doing the same.
"Where the hell is your brother?" he threw the question to his oldest son. In response he saw Dean grab his phone out of his pocket and reply he didn't know.
John sighed in frustration. Sam should not have taken this long. Dean had gotten back here a few minutes after John and they were stuck waiting for his youngest, as usual. Dammit! Sam knew how important this was and how limited their time was. Why was he still acting like a rebellious teenager, picking fights with John about anything and everything?
Suddenly, he heard the door swing open and looked up quickly in time to see his son slowly make his way inside and shut the door behind him. He opened his mouth to yell at Sam, but Dean beat him to it.
John watched as his oldest stood up and started asking Sammy where he had been. The expression on Dean's face quickly shifted from anger to concern and…was that fear? Worried now, John quickly looked towards his youngest and saw why Dean was making a beeline for Sam. Sam was barely standing upright and his face was pinched in pain. One hand was cradling his head, while the other clutched some paper and what looked like a map of the town. John saw the papers flutter to the ground as Sam started to keel over and leapt up to catch his son.
But once again, Dean beat him to it. The father could do nothing but watch as Dean braced Sam's weight, quickly divested Sam of his satchel, and led him to the bed furthest from the door.
"Come on Sammy, let's get you lying down. It's all right, just breathe through it. Come on man, just breathe."
Dean settled Sam on the bed, where the young hunter immediately curled up and buried his face in the thin pillow. John watched dumbfounded. Did his son just whimper? He hadn't seen Sammy in this kind of pain without any external injury…ever. And Sam hadn't made sounds like that since he was a kid. He looked to his other son and saw Dean moving quickly around the room, shutting the curtains and moving to their duffel bags on the floor. He dug around in his bag, muttering to himself. Not finding whatever he was looking for, he rapidly moved to Sam's and repeated the process. John watched as he came up empty handed again and made a sound of frustration.
Dean moved back over to the bed where Sam was still curled up and crouched down next to the bed near his brother's head. John had to strain to hear the quiet conversation.
"Sam? Sammy, you gotta get out of the pillow for a sec." When that just got another whimper from his brother, Dean leaned up and placed a hand on Sam's shoulder.
"Come on man, I need to know where they are. Where did you leave the pills?"
Pills? What the hell was going on? Unable to keep quiet any longer, John demanded answers from his oldest son.
"Dean? What is going on? Is there something you boys haven't told me?"
When he voiced his loud questions, two things happened at once. Sam curled up smaller and buried his face tighter into the pillow, if that was possible. Dean's reaction was to rapidly uncurl himself and spin to face his father. The expression on his son's face was enough to make John take an involuntary step back. He had seen that kind of anger on Dean's face before, but it was always directed at someone or something else, usually something that was threatening Sam. John had never had that protective anger directed his way and to behold it now was almost frightening. But this was his son, dammit, and he was going to get answers. He squared his shoulders and opened his mouth to ask again, but Dean cut him off.
"Not. Now. Dad." Dean bit off each word, still speaking softly, unwilling to cause his brother more pain despite the anger he felt towards his father for his callousness to Sam's obvious pain. Dismissing his father, he turned back towards Sam and tried asking again.
"Sammy, come on dude. I need to know where you left them."
John watched with disbelief as Dean practically screamed at him in a whisper and then turned his back on his dad, switching all of his attention back to his wounded brother. This time, the quiet question got a response from Sam as he lifted his head slightly out of the pillow and whispered something to Dean.
John couldn't hear what he said, but apparently it was what Dean had needed to hear because he quickly got back to his feet and practically ran out the door. The oldest hunter listened to the squeak of the Impala's door as he watched Sam push his head back into the thin motel pillow. Dean was back inside the room in less than a minute, quietly shutting the door behind him before moving over to the small kitchenette area.
The oldest Winchester settled himself back on the other bed to wait. Clearly, he wasn't getting any answers until Dean had taken care of Sammy. He watched Dean fill up a glass with water and take two pills out of the bottle he had finally located. His oldest son made his way back to Sam's bedside with the water and meds and quietly coaxed Sammy into sitting up enough to swallow the pills and some water. Dean resettled Sam, pulling the covers over him and tucking his brother in. As he walked away from the bed, there was a protesting sound from Sam which had Dean turning back instantly.
"I'll be right back Sammy, calm down. I'm not going anywhere, I promise. I just gotta grab a chair, okay dude? I'll be right back." Dean kept up his soft reassurances until he had snagged the chair he had been sitting in earlier and dragged to the side of the bed. He grabbed the hand Sam had thrust out from under the covers and Sam quieted.
"That's it, Sammy. Just breathe through it and let the pills work their magic."
The instant he took in Sam's posture and pained expression Dean knew it was another vision. He went immediately into action, catching Sam before his brother could fall and quickly herding him towards the bed before Sam couldn't stand at all. He settled Sammy and dove for their bags. Where were the damn pills? He and Sam had gone to a free clinic a while back, during that episode with Max, and had gotten some migraine medicine. The aftermath of Sam's visions mimicked a migraine, but they thankfully didn't last as long.
Not finding the bottle in either of their bags he tried to think of where else it could be. When was the last time Sam had needed one? Unable to come up with an answer, too worried about Sam to really think straight, he returned to his brother's bedside. He was trying to get an answer from Sam when he heard his father's loud, angry questions. Watching Sam flinch and try to burrow further into the pillow at the loudness of John's voice kicked Dean's protective instincts into overdrive.
As he faced his father, part of Dean knew that he had never stood up to his father like this. Had never stood between his father and Sammy, always between Sammy and something else. But Dean didn't have the time or patience to deal with his dad right now. Right now the only thing that mattered was getting the pills to Sam so he could start to feel better. That was the only thing Dean could do when his little brother had a vision, and no one was going to get in his way. He barely heard himself answer his dad, just knowing that he had kept his voice down so it wouldn't hurt Sammy anymore, before he turned back to his downed brother.
Finally getting the answer he needed, Dean bolted for the car. Of course they were in the Impala! After Sam's last vision, they had jumped in the car after talking to the police and Dean had forced the pills on Sam before driving back to the motel room. He wrenched open the door, hoping the squeak wouldn't bother Sam, and dug around in the glove compartment. At last he grasped the small plastic cylinder and darted back inside, making sure to shut the door quietly behind him. As he moved around the room getting water and shaking out the meds, he was aware of his father moving to sit on the other bed.
He knew his dad was frustrated with Dean's refusal to talk and probably angry with both him and Sam for holding out on him about Sam's visions. He could feel the impatience radiating off the older man, but Dean shoved that all aside. Sam needed these pills and some quiet before either of them were answering any questions. He grabbed the chair he had been using before and planted it beside Sam after getting his brother to swallow the pills. He kept up the quiet mutters of reassurance, letting Sam know he was there and not going anywhere. Dean grabbed the hand that Sammy had pushed out from under the bedspread as he sat down in the hard chair. He knew his presence helped ground Sam and helped his brother fight through the pain. And he would do anything to help Sam through this, anything.
John watched all of this with a tight feeling in his chest. He knew the bond his sons had was very strong, but seeing Dean protect Sam even from his father drove it home even harder. Clearly, this scene had been played out before. Dean's reactions were practiced, from supporting Sam to the bed, to dimming the room, to finding the pills, to knowing that Sam needed his brother to stay by him until the pain passed. And John felt helpless for one of the few times in his life. His son was obviously in a lot of pain and there wasn't anything John could do about it. He watched Dean soothe Sam and reined in his impatient questions. They could wait until Sam didn't have his face buried in a pillow and his brother's hand clutched in his, holding onto Dean like if he let go, he would be lost.
Please leave me your thoughts and thanks for reading!! I hope you enjoyed.