Sobs, harsh, almost inhuman and Bobby cannot deal with them, not again.
He bends down and takes Sam by the arm, pulling hard, feeling the tug of muscle, the solid strength there. Standing, Sam is huge, he could crush Bobby with one hand if he wanted to, but there is no anger there, only pain and loss and tears.
That night, Bobby drives the Impala and prays that there will be no more deals.
Mary Winchester is alone, husband on a job somewhere in New York State, good money, enough to put down a deposit on a house, their dream house, in Kansas.
She goes to feed the baby when she realises something is wrong. Dean is still, grey, his little lips already turning blue. She screams, holding that cold, stiff body to her chest, tears dripping onto his face, his glassy green eyes.
She knows there are so many people she should call, but she gets into the Impala (her husbands gift to her when she finally gave him a child) and drives frantically to the crossroads. She knows what she is looking for, knows what she must do.
The man is suave, yellow-eyed, his mouth made for smiling. He explains that it is usually the red-eyed ones, but Mary is special, will be special, Mary is his chosen one. She sobs and begs and he bends over, his breath fetid against her ear.
"I'll give you a good deal," he says, "a full whole life with your boy, but I get the next child, the next child is mine."
Mary nods, kisses him, his lips cold and uninviting. Her mind is whirling but she thinks she is victorious, she is safe.
The doctor told her she would have no more, she is barren and Dean was her last hope, her only hope.
The Impala screeches to a halt outside the apartment building. She hears the baby crying before she is even out of the car.
Sam doesn't sleep or eat, just swigs whiskey straight from the bottle, keeping vigil. Dean is grey and still, his body beginning to stiffen in death, blood from the wounds that the hellhounds left congealed and turning dark red.
Bobby watches from the other room, a horrible sense of foreboding, a sense of having done this before. He feels hot tears burn his eyes and he runs a callused hand over them, his gaze fixed on the youngest Winchester, the last man standing, an orphan in every sense of the word.
He takes his own glass and drains it, wanting only oblivion, hoping that, when he wakes, Sam will still be here.
She wants to abort the child in her womb but it clings there tenaciously, putting a big smile on John's handsome face. Dean sits by her, his hand on her belly, feeling the baby kick. He is excited at the prospect of being a big brother and Mary wants to cry, to sob, to beg them both for forgiveness.
At night her dreams are full of yellow-eyes and crossroad dirt and she is worn and sick by mornings.
Sammy is born on a Sunday, big and long, he seems to look at her knowingly, large, liquid eyes burning into her soul. She loves him instantly, the moment she knows that he isn't a monster, sees John in him, sees Dean, even sees herself.
She holds him close to her and prays for absolution.
Sam buries the box nice and deep, although he knows, in reality, that it is futile.
No one comes to him or for him and he is left alone, on his knees, in the crossroad dirt, tears smearing his face, his hands tearing through greasy hair, teeth biting hard on his lip, making it bloody and sore.
He wishes that Lilith had killed him, wished he had been blown away by that bright, white light. He doesn't want to think what his survival means, to him or to his dead brother.
At night, he dreams of Dean, in hell, meat hooks pressed into muscle and bone, the screams harsh and telling. Only one word is ever uttered.
She sees him bending over Sammy's cot, blood dripping from his wrist into her precious baby's mouth. Yellow eyes meet hers and she knows. The last words she ever says on this earth are "It's you," before she is lifted up against the wall, her body dragged from floor to ceiling, his eyes on her face as he lifts up his hand and tears it across her abdomen. The pain in her heart is worse than the pain in her belly and she feels the fire engulf her, John's face a mass of anguish and confusion.
She is mistress of her own destiny.
Six months and Sam is harder, faster and meaner, all the soft edges worn away. He lives only because he has to, exists really, killing everything that gets in his way, be it demon, monster or human. The day he stabs a ten year old girl, with Ruby's knife, because there was a demon inside of her, is the day he finally breaks.
He sits in the Impala, head on the steering wheel, and prays for death.
The irony is, she doesn't go straight to hell, lingering in her old house, watching it being rebuilt, watching families come and go, driven away by old evil.
When the men come, she knows them instantly, even though it has been twenty-two years, a mother doesn't ever forget.
She wants to touch them; Dean's face is hard, but his eyes are soft, moss green and gentle, like his fathers. To her he is still that four year old child who wanted a brother so much and once made her a card, sticky with glitter and glue, saying 'To the Best Mom ever'.
There is nothing of that chubby baby in the tall, thin, boy who stands before her, dark eyes wet with unshed tears. She sees the soul in him, sees that it is good, that he has not yet been touched by the evil thing inside of him, dormant maybe, waiting to burst out.
"I'm sorry," she whispers, as she touches his cheek and he stares at her, wanting in his eyes.
She did this to her sons and she doesn't know if anyone can ever fix what is broken.
Bobby Singer is, possibly, the only man alive who knew that Dean Winchester cheated death three times. Sure Dean knew about the faith healer, his dad's painful deal, but he never knew about his moms, about baby boy who was dead in his cot, about what it cost her.
All through this hell, both on earth and below it, they had thought that it was all about Sam, about his powers, his demon blood, his destiny. In reality though, it had all been about a tiny baby and the fierce love of a mother for her son.
When Bobby Singer put Sam Winchester into the ground, he knew that the cycle had finally ended, that all deals were now, officially off.
Then he went to Mary Winchester's grave and prayed for forgiveness, for peace and for understanding.
In the end, he mused, love can damage men's souls as much as hate, and sometimes, the consequences of such a great love, can cause ripples down through endless generations.
Mary Winchester's love for her son, John Winchester's love for his boy, Dean Winchester's love for his brother.
Consequences, Bobby mused, as he wiped a hand across his tear smeared face, consequences…