Well, here's more holiday brotherly schmoop. I can't seem to help myself.

Again, apologies if it's too sappy.

Disclaimer: Neither the boys nor anything related to Supernatural belongs to me. I'm just playing around with Eric Kripke's masterpiece of creation.

Santa Claus is Coming to Town

By: Vanessa Sgroi


The rustle of scratchy sheets woke him. Nine-year-old Dean Winchester rolled over and squinted in the semi-darkness (thanks to his five-year-old little brother's secondhand Spiderman nightlight) at Sammy's bed. Seeing it empty, he pushed back his own jumble of blankets and slipped from his bed. Clad in a pair of too-short flannel pajama bottoms and a t-shirt, the young boy shivered as cold air assaulted his sleep-warm body.

Padding barefoot from the room, Dean checked the bathroom before moving down the short hallway to the small square of a living room in search of his kid brother. By glow of a second nightlight, he found the younger boy kneeling in front of the one and only window in the front of the tiny rented house, skinny arms resting on the windowsill, gazing intently up at the black sky. His curly hair was sticking up at all angles.

"Sammy, what are you doing?" his voice was raspy from sleep. He rubbed a hand over his eyes.

The younger boy straightened, sighed, and glanced at his older sibling before turning his attention to the night sky. "I'm lookin' for Santa Claus."

"You're what?"

"I wanted to see if I could see Santa up in his sleigh."

"You really shouldn't be out of bed, squirt. You have the sniffles, remember?"

"I know, Dee. But it's Christmas and Santa's s'posed to come tonight. Brandon at school said so."

He doesn't exist, kiddo, but I can't tell ya that—not yet. "Sammy, you know Santa has trouble finding us 'cause we move so much."

"But this year we're HERE, Deanie, in a real house."

More like a rundown shack. "Yeah, well, you know Sammy, we haven't been here that long."

"But he still might find us, right?" Sammy's voice was soft and his eyes were huge and luminous in the gloom.

The older boy thought about the present he had wrapped and hidden for Sam—two Spiderman comic books, two Matchbox cars, and a candy bar. He'd skipped lunch for two weeks to save the money for it. It wasn't much, but at least it would be something to put under the ragtag, threadbare tree adorned with tinsel and rumpled garland made from rings of red and green construction paper that was propped forlornly in the corner.

He cleared his throat and ruffled the younger boy's hair. "Yeah, Sammy, maybe he'll find us. But it's only 11:00—way too early to be lookin' for him. And it's too cold in here for you to stay up."

"But I can't sleep!" Sam anxiously stood, turning to solemnly face Dean. His plaid flannel hand-me-down pajamas from Dean were still too big and flapped over his fingers and toes. "I-I wanna see him!"

"Sammy, you've seen all the cartoon specials, Santa only comes when kids are sleeping. If you're awake, you'll scare him away."


Deciding it was time for bribery as opposed to a long, drawn-out argument, Dean cajoled, "Look, how about this—I'll make us some hot chocolate. As long as you promise to go to bed afterward, okay?"

After a slight hesitation, Sammy nodded. He followed Dean into the kitchen and sat down at the table, watching his brother fill a small saucepan with water and place it on the stove.

"Is Daddy coming home, Dee?"

Dean emptied two envelopes of dry powdered cocoa into mugs while he waited for the water to boil, wishing it would hurry because he was freezing. "I dunno, kiddo. He said earlier on the phone he was gonna try." But I could tell he didn't mean it. Finally, the water came to a simmer and Dean carefully poured some into each mug. After stirring until it was all mixed, he pushed one of the cups in front of his brother. "Careful, Sammy, it's hot. Blow on it some before you drink it."

Following Dean's sage advice, little Sam puffed air across the top of the foamy chocolate until it was cool enough to take a sip. He swung his legs back and forth, humming Jingle Bells under his breath as he took another sip and swallowed. The little boy was just about to take another mouthful when he stopped and tilted his head in thought. "Dee, do we have any cookies?"

"Nooo. You took the last two in your lunch two days ago—just before Christmas break."

Sam's shoulders slumped, and he looked like he wanted to cry.

The older Winchester brother hated when Sam got that crumpled, devastated look on his face. "Sorry, Sammy, I-I just didn't have extra to spend for more."

" 's okay. I jus' wanted to leave one for Santa. The—the kids at school were all tellin' Mrs. Carre they leave him a glass of milk and cookies. Could we just leave him a glass of milk?"

Dean's heart sank. "We don't have enough. We need what's left for your cereal tomorrow morning."


"Hey, I've got an idea! I'll leave Santa a mug of hot chocolate—how about that, huh, Sammy? That's not something he'll get at every house."

Sam's face lit up. "Really?"

"Yeah, there's a little hot water left in the pan. I'll make the hot chocolate, and we'll leave it for him on the table, okay?"

"Okay!" The younger boy hopped down off his chair and wrapped his arms around Dean in a big hug. "Thanks, Dee."

Squirming in his brother's enthusiastic embrace, the older boy groused, "Yeah, yeah, squirt. You done?"

Sam shook his head, grabbing his mug to take a couple of more gulps before he handed the remains to his brother. "Will you read me a story?"

Dean sighed dramatically, as if he hated the very idea. "If I have to. Go hop in bed."

"Don't forget Santa's cocoa!" yelled Sam as he raced back to his bed.

While Sam complied, Dean prepared the extra cup as promised and left it on the table to dispose of after his brother was fast asleep. After rinsing out the mugs they'd used, he hurried back to their bedroom, diving under Sam's covers with him to get warm. "Okay, where's the book?"

The younger boy held out his favorite. "Here."

"Cool. This is a good one." Dean started to read, and it wasn't long before Sammy's eyelids drifted closed and he settled into slumber. Once he was sure his brother was asleep, Dean again slid out of bed, returned to the kitchen to dump the hot chocolate—leaving the dirty mug as evidence for when Sam got up in the morning. Before climbing back in bed, the older boy grabbed Sam's present and stowed it under the Christmas tree. Returning to their room, Dean crawled under his covers, pulled his knees to his chest and curled around his pillow. He let the sound of his brother's steady if slightly congested, breathing lull him into sleep.


The rustle of scratchy sheets woke him. Dean Winchester rolled over and squinted in the semi-darkness (thanks to the motel parking lot lights) at Sam's bed. Seeing it empty, he pushed back his own jumble of blankets and propped himself up on his elbows. He shivered as cool air assaulted his sleep-warm body.

His gaze roamed around the room until he spied his brother standing in front of window, gazing intently up at the black sky. "Sammy, what are you doing?" his voice was raspy from sleep. "Don't tell me you're looking for Santa Claus."

Sam turned from the window, one corner of his mouth tilting upward. "No. And it's okay for me to be up, I don't have the sniffles. How's the leg?"

Dean maneuvered until his upper body was resting against the headboard. "Throbbing a little. But nothing I can't live with."

"You need another pain pill?"

"Nah. Last dose hasn't really worn off yet. I'm okay. I'm thirsty though. We have anything around?"

"Well, your hot chocolate's cold. You want me to warm it up in the microwave?"

At Dean's nod, Sam retrieved his cup from earlier off the nightstand and stuck it in the small microwave in the kitchenette. After two and a half minutes, the cocoa was hot enough to be drinkable. He delivered it to his brother. "It might be hot so you might wanna blow on it," Sam said with a grin.

Dean chuckled a little at hearing his own oft-repeated warning from when they were kids tossed back at him. "So what were you doing?" Dean asked after taking a sip.

"Nothing. Just thinking."

"You know—there's such a thing as turning the brain off for awhile. It's called sleep, dude."

"Yeah, I know. I will."

"Thinking about anything in particular?"

"No, not really." Sam's eyes, however, told a different story.

"Sam—I-I never wanted to burden you—never wanted to tell you but I just—just couldn't…"

"Dean, no! It's not that—" Sam held out a placating hand. "I swear it's not that. It's … uh … kinda chick-flicky…"


Sam nodded but remained silent.

"You gonna tell me?" Dean grunted.

"You really wanna know?" Sam reclined on his own bed.

"I'm askin', aren't I?"

"I was watching 'It's a Wonderful Life' earlier. And it just made me think about…things."

"Oh." Dean drained his mug. "So, seriously, you watched It's a Wonderful Life? That's so…so… Wasn't there anything else on? Like A Christmas Story? Now THERE'S a Christmas movie! Ralphie wants 'an official Red Ryder carbine-action 200-shot range model air rifle with a compass in the stock, and this thing which tells time'. Smart kid… Then there was the kid who licked the flag pole and got his tongue frozen to it—remember when you tried that, Sammy? And what about that leg lamp, huh?"

Sam fell asleep listening to his brother extolling the virtues of, in his vociferous opinion, a totally non-chick-flicky Christmas movie.