But In The End It Didn't Really Matter.

Summary. . . . . . . He fought with Sam in an attempt to keep him safe, but John's about to find out, in the end it didn't really matter. A short little one shot response to reviews for Being Cruel To Be Kind, asking for a fic based on John finding out about Jess.

Disclaimer. . . . . . Not mine, I'm still only loaning them.

The insistently ringing cell phone resonated harshly around the otherwise still space. Laying forlornly on the grimy, paper strewn night stand, it was barely glanced at by the rooms only occupant before the man's attention was focused once again upon the walls and the information he had taped up there. After years of research and calculations John and his close friend, Caleb Cross had finally figured out a way for them to track the demon that had ruined both their lives. Which was why he had so abruptly, three weeks ago, left the hunt for the woman in white, in Jericho California, to trek his way to Concord after the signs had started showing up there. He had been too late though to save the mother of the six month old baby girl, too late to save yet another family from feeling the same desperate tragedy he had felt all those years ago. He had retreated to the motel after learning of the woman's death, not leaving it for anything, having food delivered when he felt hungry, but otherwise staring for hours at the wall he had created, as grief overcame him. Even his phone ringing again an hour later could do little to bring him out of the slump he had fallen into, could do little to stop the melancholy thoughts that ravaged him.

The hunt, that was all he thought about these days, and with each day that passed it consumed him all the more. His unceasing quest to find the thing that had killed his beloved wife, that had cost him his young perfect family, had cost him dearly over the years. His once proud good looks had been replaced by worry lines and dark circles. His once mane of glorious brown hair was now peppered with grey, and if he was truthful to himself the grey's were beginning to take full control. His once clean shaven face was now constantly coated with five o clock shadow, or as it was at the minute a full grown beard. These things though were minor losses compared to the most prized possession he had lost since the death of his wife. The loss of his youngest son. Knowledge garnered over the years had led John to take action, action that had resulted in him accusing Sam of betraying his family in a quest for a normal life, and a chance at university. In the end his own biting words had worked and Sam had left, but not before John's own hand had shot out and struck his youngest son, something he had never done to either boys before. He had instantly regretted it, the smack that was not the words, the words had been needed and although cruel and not at all meant, if by saying them he could keep Sam alive and safe and away from the things that chased him, then John had no doubt he would say them again in a heart beat.

Thinking about Sam again brought John's thoughts back to his eldest son, Dean. Dean had always been the more obedient of his two sons, the one that would follow orders no questions asked, but even he had turned away a little from John that night. He still respected his father, still never questioned his actions, but ever since that night he had requested to be allowed to do more and more hunts on his own, to the point where their paths were crossing less and less. As his cell phone rang again, John thought about Dean, he hadn't even found the time to check in with his eldest, perhaps that was who was ringing now? Feeling suddenly nostalgic and needing to hear his eldest son's voice John finally picked up the phone, surprised when he did to see the amount of voice mail messages he had received. Skipping through the list he decided to listen to the last six messages all left within the past week and a bit, before calling Dean. Pressing the button he began to listen, Caleb's voice being the first he heard.

"John? It's October twenty sixth. Call me, it's important." John made a note on the pad he had handy, determined to call Caleb as soon as he had called his son. That determination increasing as he listened to Caleb's second message.

"John, please call me! It's October twenty eighth. The signs are back!" John stood from the bed and rushed to his duffel. Still cradling the phone between his head and shoulder he hurriedly began to pack his meager belongings, stopping suddenly as Caleb's next message began.

"John! God dammit! It's October thirty first, will you answer your fucking phone! I've managed to narrow down the search to within thirty kilometers of the San Jose area. Call me back." John could feel his heart beat rising along with his breakfast as he listened to Caleb's words. San Jose was too close to Palo Alto, surely the demon wasn't? But Sam was suppose to be safe. Caleb's next message though confirmed his worst fears and had him packing all the more faster.

"You stubborn son of a bitch! You can't keep losing focus when we lose someone, others will die if you do. It's November second, I can't wait around any longer. If you finally pick this up follow me out here. It's targeting someone in Palo Alto. Get out here John, you know how powerful this bastard is. Get out here now!" John's knees gave out on him then, his body crashing unceremoniously to the floor. As he listened to Caleb's next message he felt the tears forming.

"John, I was too late. It got someone, I don't know any facts yet, I'll call you back when I do." John prayed then, prayed that the victim wasn't his youngest son, prayed that the demon hadn't destroyed part of his family yet again. It was the next message that answered those prayers as Dean's voice rang out. The tears that had been forming fell relentlessly as John listened to his son's voice, a voice that was so usually strong and cocky, was now broken and unsure.

"Dad, it's me, Dean. I'm in Palo Alto and I really need you to come here. It's Sam, Dad." John's stomach rolled and the lunch he had been fighting to keep down showed itself again at Dean's words and the silent pause that followed them. Struggling to regain control John forced himself to listen as Dean spoke again. "The demon that killed Mom attacked his apartment. I managed to get Sam out Dad and he's. . . . . he's okay, but it killed his girlfriend, Dad. Pinned her to the ceiling just like Mom, he's a mess, he needs you here, Dad. Sam needs you. I guess call me when you get this, bye."

John sat there for a long while after Dean's voice had stopped talking. Guilt washing over him yet again. It had all been for nothing. His vicious, cruel barbs aimed at Sam two years ago, aimed at preventing just this from happening, aimed at keeping his son safe, aimed at keeping the demons away, had all been in vain. He'd hurt his son, driven him away from his family and for what? To keep him safe, to keep him out of danger, but in the end it had hadn't worked, Sam wasn't safe, Sam hadn't been kept from being hurt. Sam had been subjected to all that hurt and in the end it didn't really matter.

A.N. . . . . . . Well that was what I came up with, how was it? As always thanks to everyone for reading. Catch you later, Peanut x