Renewing Bonds.

Summary. . . . . . Promises broken, secrets revealed, brothers torn apart. After Jess' death can Sam and Dean make right what was destroyed two years earlier? A short one shot sequel to Broken Promises, uncovered secrets. Angst a given!

Disclaimer. . . . . . Written for fun, they don't belong to me I'm just playing with Kripkie's action men!

A.N. . . . . A few readers were, I think, disappointed with how I left Broken Promises, a few others wanted a scene between Sam and Dean, so I gave it some thought and this is what I came up with. I hope you like it, enjoy, and as always thank you so much for reading, Peanut x

"We've got work to do!"

Dean contemplated those five words, and the lone tear that had fallen down Sam's face as he stood at the back of the Impala outside his now destroyed apartment, as he watched his younger brother toss and turn on the too small bed in their latest crappy motel. They had turned out to be the only words that had come out of Sam's mouth, the only tear to have fallen at least in Dean's company, since he had pulled him from the clutches of hell. Now five days later Dean was getting worried. Sam refused to eat, barely drank, and was lucky if he caught an hour of sleep a night before terrors struck, images ripping through his subconscious of Jess pinned to the ceiling, blood dripping from her stomach, her eyes begging for help, begging for understanding, bringing blood chilling screams from Sam's mouth and sending him sprinting for the bathroom where he spent hours dry heaving and crying in solitude; refusing to open the door no matter how furiously Dean threatened to break it down.

Earlier tonight had been the last straw, Dean had finally carried through with his threat, shattering the door from it's frame as Sam's sobs seemed to intensify, only to stand in it's ruins shocked and unprepared for the sight that greeted him. A sight that took his breath away, raised his heart to his throat, and brought back memories Dean had buried deep; memories Dean had never wanted to see repeated. Sam clad only in boxer shorts, rocking back and forth as sobs wracked his body, a knife held precariously close to his throat. On legs of jelly Dean started to step forward, only to hesitate and retreat. Sam hadn't wanted him last time, had refused to even acknowledge him, no matter how hard Dean had tried Sam kept blowing him away, why would this time be any different? Dean retreated even further, sitting on his bed yet still with a clear view of the bathroom, he wept silent tears; tears for his sibling and the pain he was going through, and for himself as he struggled, unable to see a way to help.

Both men had refused to talk about it when Sam finally, hours later, slouched his way back to his bed, flopping down on it and staring blankly at the wall, fighting his bodies need for sleep until his eyes, heavy with exhaustion, could no longer stay open. Dean let out a quiet weary sigh as Sam's breathing evened out, not wanting to move an inch in case he woke his sleeping sibling, he sat and contemplated his next move. Did he take the Winchester way, and stay quiet, distant, hoping that things would eventually blow over and Sam would find his own way back? Or was it time for a long over due chick flick moment? How ever much he hated the thought of it, Dean knew the second option was the only way to go. He had avoided it two years ago, walked away when he knew he should have stayed, when he knew Sam needed him most. To his own defense, Sam had at the time been pushing him away, but deep down Dean knew his brother hadn't meant to, but with his own feelings of guilt and failure running rampant within him Dean had taken Sam's words as an easy way out and left.

Of course at the time Sam had Jess; a woman that in a short time Dean had grown to admire and respect, a woman who had vowed to stay by Sam, love him and help him, even after she had eventually found out all that had happened to him in his past. Now though that rock, that tower of strength, had been crushed, leaving Dean once again as Sam's grounding point, his lifeline as he balanced precariously between the here and now, and the deep dark depths of his mind; and this time, Dean knew, there would be no walking away, because if he did Sam would fall and with no one there to help would he be able to mend? His resolve steeled, and knowing if he waited it would only get harder, Dean moved to wake Sam up and initiate the talk that he knew was desperately needed.

Shaking Sam's shoulder gently, Dean was dismayed when he got no response from Sam. Shaking a little bit harder and calling his name though had the desired effect as Sam's eyes opened, happiness at seeing Dean before him shining in them briefly, before remembrance flooded his mind and the happiness ebbed away to be replaced by confusion, sadness and grief. As tears threatened to fall yet again and not wanting Dean to see him cry, Sam tried to turn away, to cut his brother off yet again, Dean though refused to allow it.

"We need to talk Sam. We need to talk about what's happened." As Sam's eyes focused on anything but his older brother, Dean tried again. "Sam, talk to me please?"

"Why?" Sam eventually whispered out.

"So that I can help you. . . . . . . ."

"Help me!" Sam laughed. "How the hell can you help me? Jessica's. . . . .Jess' is de. . . . she's gone Dean. Taken by the thing that took Mom, please tell me what you can do to help me? Can you bring her back?" As silence came from his brother, Sam carried on. "The only person I have ever loved, that understood me, that would listen to me, that would calm me down when the nightmares came, that didn't judge me because of my past, is gone. She's dead Dean."

Dean's heart broke as he listened to Sam speak about Jess doing a job he had spent nearly twenty years doing. How had it ever come to this? When had Sam stopped talking to him? When had Sam felt he could no longer trust Dean with those things? Dean though knew exactly when it had occurred, leaving Stanford when he did two years ago, he had left that responsibility behind, leaving Jess to pick up the pieces of Sam's destroyed life and mold them back together. Now though those pieces were broken once again, and with Jess gone could Dean take back what was one his one time goal in life and look after Sammy once again? Dean knew in his heart he could, knew that he had no other choice in the matter, knew that if he failed Sam this time his brother would be lost forever, and that was something Dean would do everything in his power to prevent from happening.

"Sam, please don't shut me out again. Tell me what I can do to help you feel better?"

"Leave me alone."

"Sam, I can't do that. I wont do that."

"Why not? You have before."

Sam knew that he was lashing out, but he was hurting and he wanted someone to feel his pain, even if that someone didn't deserve it. He knew he had pushed Dean away, knew that blaming him for the secrets he had kept was stupid, but hurt and confused and scared as he was at the time he had done it anyway; trying to keep what little bit of his sanity he had left intact. Jess had helped him recover after Dean had gone, talking to him, listening to him, reassuring him, comforting him, closing slowly the void Dean's departure had created. Deep inside her though, even she had known that she wasn't the one who needed to be doing this, that Sam needed Dean, that she was just a convenient temporary replacement, and so every day she would coax Sam into making contact, but stubborn and guilt ridden Sam would refuse. Turning to Dean she had tried pushing him to call, but had found out pretty soon just how alike the two brothers were.

"I needed you two years ago and you left. Why should I let you back in now?"

"You were the one who pushed me away Sam, you were the one who forced me to leave, you wouldn't look at me, you wouldn't talk to me, you barely tolerated being in the same room as me, what was I suppose to do?"

"Keep trying!" Sam shouted out as he rose to sit on the edge of the bed.

"I kept trying Sam, but you kept pushing me away. You made it pretty clear you didn't want me there, so I made things easier for you and left. You wanted space so I gave it to you."

"I didn't want space Dean, I wanted my big brother, but when the going got tough, he turned and ran."

"That's not fair Sam! How was I suppose to know? Was I suppose to psychically guess what was happening in your head, what was running through your mind? You didn't want me! You didn't need me! You were the one pushing me aside! Tell me Sam, how was I suppose to know?" Dean had started pacing them room as his anger rose slightly. At Sam's next words he stopped, rooted to the spot.

"You always knew before." Sam's words were mumbled and whispered, all fight beginning to leave his body. "You always knew when I needed you before. You always knew when I was hurting. I pushed you so far and so hard in the past, but never once did you walk away. What happened? What changed?"

Dean stood there winded, Sam's words hitting close to home. In the dark days of his past, Sam had pushed Dean to the edge, yet never once had he walked away like he did at Stanford. He had battled and fought and eventually he had always managed to get Sam out of his slump. Why was last time so different? What had changed? "Jess."

"What? What about Jess?"

"You had Jessica, Sam. Even then you could see how much she cared for you, tell how much she loved you. I figured you would be okay, that you didn't need me anymore."

Sam sat there open mouthed, letting Dean's words sink slowly in. "Dean." He eventually replied. "Your my brother and I love you. Nobody will ever replace you." He stopped before adding. "I could never tell Jess everything, Dean. I felt if I did it would make me appear weak and pathetic and useless to her, half a man. I thought if she knew she would walk away too, and then I would have really been alone. So I never told her the whole truth, I kept it inside and let it fester and eat away at me slowly. She guessed at what I was doing, that I wasn't telling her the whole truth. She tried everyday to get me to open up to her, but I couldn't do it, I just couldn't tell her. She even tried to get me to call you."


"Don't Dean! It's okay, I know it's my fault. I knew I deserved to feel that way, Joe said so."

"No, Sam! No you didn't! You didn't deserve the things they did to you, and you certainly didn't deserve to feel the way you did. As for Joe, he was just a piece of crap, and the words he told you were just the same."

"No Dean! I destroyed his family."

"Sam listen to yourself, you didn't destroy anything, they tried to destroy you! You didn't make the Burton's, or Corey, or Paul do the things they did, you didn't force them to rape you, to hurt you, to hurt me. They made their own choices Sam, bad choices. You didn't destroy any families, they did. Ours!" Walking over and sitting down on the bed next to Sam, Dean continued. "I'm so sorry Sam, I'm so sorry I walked away. I really did think I was doing what you wanted, that I was doing the right thing, that you would be fine with Jess there. I'm also sorry that I didn't tell you about Lesley and the guys, I just couldn't see what good it would do to have you know. I guess I well and truly screwed up."

"Dean I'm sorry too, I was the one who pushed. I guess I just hated the fact that you were seeing me weak again, and I understand why you kept the secrets, but you still shouldn't have. You should have known Winchester luck would have run out eventually and I would have found out. You should have trusted me."

Pulling Sam in for a hug Dean answered. "I did trust you Sam, but after Lesley you were such a mess and I didn't want that knowledge to be the thing that pushed you over the edge. I'm sorry."

Resting his head on his brothers shoulder, and with weariness beginning to take hold, Sam whispered. "Yeah bro, so am I."

Feeling Sam's head get heavier Dean moved. "C'mon Sam, lets get you some decent sleep." Gently lowering his younger brother down, Dean positioned him on the bed before pulling the blanket up over his lanky frame. He watched as Sam rolled onto his side, facing Dean's bed. Placing a hand on his head he brushed his bangs off his forehead, softly whispering words as he did so.

"You're wrong about one thing Sam. Jess would have understood, she would never have walked away, she would never have left you. She loved you too much."

As Dean's words faded, Sam turned to look at his brother and the tears he had been holding back, only releasing them in solitude, began to fall freely. Rivers of salt water flowing down his cheeks, dampening his pillow beneath and finally cleansing his soul.

A.N. . . . . . Well that's it, the end to the series. Was it worth adding too? I hope so. Catch you soon, Peanut x