Five times Sam couldn't save Dean and one time he did

Warnings: Spoilers for Season One and Season Two, Character Death, Alternate Realities.

Disclaimer: Supernatural belongs to Kripke and the CW. tear

Summary: Part One in the Five Times Series. Fate and Destiny are never simple. The possibilities and probabilities are endless.

Notes: I've read a few of these and decided- in the middle of the night- that I wanted to do some too, damn it! It's probably already been done a bazillion times but here's my first contribution to the Supernatural fandom. basks in the newness

Feedback is love. AND this is also to show that no I haven't died and forgot to tell anyone about my fics. I've been writing, just not one particular story. My muse is jumpy- think crack addicted hummingbird on a lot of expresso. Tada- my muse.


Five Times Sam Didn't Save Dean and One Time He Did

One

The first time he ever really loses control of his powers, Dean is being stubborn about finding a way out of his deal. Poision words fly like darts, meant to hurt and scar. Sometimes, Sam wonders if his brother even wants to be saved or if he wants to go out in a big heroic twist- just like Dad.

Sam doesn't block the fist that comes flying at his jaw but unlike that time in the parking lot, he lets himself retaliate. His big hand is clenched into a hard fist as something dark and hot/cold and thrilling races thorugh his veins.

He doesn't even feel the pain of his knuckles connecting with Dean's suddenly fragile looking jaw. He doesn't even feel it when Dean doesn't get up swinging and spitting curses like their Latin. He's past the pain when his eyes register the blank, dull look of dead in his brother's gaze. There are no bruises on his hand but Dean's jaw is already moltted with dark blue-black-purple marks.

His large, untouched- demonic- hands ghost over Dean's too-still features, struck by the irony of them arguing over his brother's coming death and wonders if this tight, dark emptiness in his chest is what made Lily's eyes look like broken pieces of the sky back in Cold Oaks.

Two

Dad never did answer his phone as the weeks flew by and Dean grew weaker and weaker. Joshua's faith healer turned out to be nothing more than a quack with a white collar and Sam was already out of ideas and doctors to badger. The last specialist had put Dean's name on the emergency transplant list but repeated- numerously- that most patients spent years waiting for a match and many passed before they could be saved.

His brother had weeks, not years Sam had shot back countless times as he practically lived by Dean's bedside. He only left after visiting hours, when the security had been called and to update himself on Dean's worsening condition.

"There's something killing horny teens down in Flordia, maybe you should go check it out." Dean coughed out, the sound a wet rattle that froze Sam's own lungs. "Getting out of here might do you some good. Get some sun and shit. You look like death warmed over. Heh."

"Dean," Sam said softly, his voice carrying over the beep of the heart monitor and the low hiss of the oxygen, right into Dean's ears. "I'm not leaving you."

"You did once." Dean murmured tiredly, his chest a steady ache. "Shouldn't be that hard to do a second time."

Sam jerked back in the hard plastic seat, exhausted and worried and heart sick over Dean's failing health. "Is that what this? Some twisted payback because I went to school? You- I- Argh!"

The younger hunter stood with a huff, the anger leaving his frame quickly. A shaky hand ran through greasy bangs before he spoke.

"I'm going to go get a coffee. We'll talk about this when I get back. Understand?"

Dean shrugged weakly before closing his eyes. Sam sighed and took it as another silent acknowlegement.

He was just a five minute walk away from the hospital when the heart monitor began to scream.

Sam knew his father had gotten his unanswered messages when he called John's cell only to hear "This is John Winchester. I can't be reached. If this is an emergency call my son, Sam….."

Three

"If it's here naturally…." Sam trailed off, vaguely hit with the idea that he was talking to his brother's spirit as his body fought to stay alive. He had to find a way to stop a reaper from claiming his brother's soul again, only this time there were no faith healers to lay down some mojo on his stupid ass.

Whatever that meant.

John was too busy limping around the hospital with all the makings of a summoning ritual tucking under his gown and Sam hated him with a passion as he watched the doctors keep working on his brother every time Dean crashed.

"There are only so many times we can resussitate your brother before there is permenant damage." The doctor said frankly. "There will eventually come a time when we can't bring him back and you will have to be ready to face his passing."

Sam had given the man with a Ph.D behind his name the Winchester version of a 'Fuck That' and started researching containment spells and protection rituals against Reapers. God what he wouldn't do to have Mrs. Le Grange's wonky cross and black magic right now.

God what he wouldn't do to have his father here right now, helping him save Dean for once. His brother had already given them both so much- couldn't they give something back now that Dean was the one who needed it?

Sam jogged up to his dad's room, heedless of the aches and pains of his own body only to find a still empty bed and an absent father left in the wake of John's obsession.

The heart monitor screamed shrilly from Dean's room and with a sinking ohgodno feeling, Sam knew this was it. He felt surreal and brittle, like a strong gust would break him to pieces as his feet drifted closer to the end of his world. Dean arched and flopped across the bed as the paddles tried to start his heart and for a moment, Sam was sure he could hear his brother screaming denials as the nurses and doctors shared half-hearted, knowing looks and kept pumping Dean's heart just because his little brother was watching.

The room blurred as the fuzzy shapes of the hospital personalle stopped compressions and someone unhooked the bag that kept Dean breathing for fuck's sake, and called out.

"Time of death- 10:42 am."

Sam staggared away from the reality and the pitying stares of the nurses and back to his father's room. Dad could fix it, he would fix it. He just had to wait from him to come back.

Yeah. Okay.

The sun set and rose again on Sam sitting broken in a plastic chair as his faith in his father drained from his veins and the demon blood he was unaware of filled the void. Dean was gone- his body moved and his spirit taken by the reaper as Sam did nothing and Dad….Dad-

Dad was limping through the door excitedly, a grin across his face and a fucking spring in his step as he spotted Sam.

"It's gone. The demon that killed your mother….it's gone."

Sam didn't smile and felt horribly empty at the news. Mom, Jess and now Dean- he's pretty sure the price wasn't worth it, just for a little revenge. He wonders if John feels the same way when he says, hollowly, "So is Dean" and watches the color drain from his father's face.

Four

His head is pounding like the drum solo of one of Dean's stupid tapes he plays so much the tunes are practically burned into Sam's subconscious. Something hard is pressed against his cheek and it's wet and cold like…like asphalt.

Things come together and speed up- like a vision without the mind numbing pain- before Sam thinks about the agony in his head, he's sitting up and spinning on the wild ride called The Ground. Evil Twin Number Two is curled in on himself, obviously dead if the puddle of blood around him is to be believed. Diner Girl is sobbing and muttering to herself in the corner as Andy tries to get her to come to him, still waving around the actual smoking gun. Whatever happened here, all Sam knew was that in the end, Andy did kill someone and his brother was a lousy sniper.

The numbers on his cell phone were blurry, white dots and sqiggles but Dean's number was speed dial one and apparently Sam wasn't important enough to answer.

"Andy? Andy! I need to get to Dean- something's wrong."

The geeky looking mind controller shifted his attention from his temporarily insane girlfriend to Sam's worried gaze.

"I'm sorry. I couldn't stop him before- he was stronger than I was. Better than I was. Dean…"

Sam staggared to his feet in panic, hitting the car at his side before standing in a vaguely steady way. Andy's words were…..more than a bit frightening and just not possible. No.

"Dean- Dean's just not answering his phone. He's a dick like that." Sam was in denial. "You- you're wrong."

"We heard the shot from here." Andy whispered, his own gaze turning inward. "It echoed. I didn't think it would be so loud-"

"No! Shut up- he's not..."

It took shaking hands too many long seconds to hotwire the car and leave that stupid fuck Andy and his barbie girlfriend on that overpass.

Between the agony in his head and keeping the car on the road, Sam barely had the piece of mind to keep hitting 1 on his cell. It didn't matter- Dean didn't answer and he was already pulling up to the last place he'd seen his brother.

Pain blurred eyes scanned the small clearing and Sam could practically smell the fear and dispair that still hung in the air, coupled with the unmistakable scent of gunpowder.

It took finding Dean's body between the bushes, his heart already numb, to realize he never really believed his brother would leave this place alive.

Five

Dean's been missing for over a week by the time Sam is on the last set of warehouses to search.

Dean, his stupid brother, who ran off by himself to hunt the damn djinn without leaving his last location, without back-up, without Sam. Sam, who had less than a good night's sleep all week, frantic to find Dean before the clock in his mind did the final countdown to zero.

This was why they never ever hunted alone. Those years Sam was at Stanford seemed like the biggest bout of stupidity Sam had ever seen possess his brother and father. They didn't talk too much about it because he had come to hate how Dean and Dad seemed to think their lives had no worth without Sam to protect.

Either way, Dean was so getting his ass kicked when Sam found him. A fucking Djinn….

Djinn drained their victims of blood, kept them locked in their perfect fantasy world and unless Sam killed the son of a bitch who knew if simply finding Dean would be enough?

Turned out, it wasn't and suddenly Sam knew- the one thing worse than finding Dean dead in that abandoned warehouse was this; watching him slip away from Sam in a hospital bed, with a smile on his face.

One

A crossroads was a fucking nuisance to defend Sam thought wildly, still high from the fight. His eyes kept flickering away from the smouldering body that was once Lilith and the scorched grass and flowers that had once decorated the roads. Those were worries that could wait, forever if needed.

All that mattered was Dean, still alive and breathing in his arms. The hounds had come and left their marks in the deep slashes down Dean's legs, until Sam had nothing left to lose (Humanity? What was that without Dean?) and just let go.

The air had cleared and Sam was sure he should have been horrified in the mess he'd left of the poor child Lilith had been possessing but somehow, Dean's never ending murmurs ("They're gone…..I can't see them anymore Sammy….They're all gone.") made everything seem worth it.