Title: Aim for Heaven and Wind up in Hell
Disclaimer: Characters aren't mine. Title belongs to Bad Company's song "Crazy Circles."
Warnings/spoilers: AHBL and 4x10
A/N: I actually did the math for this story (too bad all math problems can't relate to Supernatural). This story assumes Sam was dead for two days before Dean made his deal and if so than I'm 99% sure the math is correct.
Summary: Sam understands the horrors associate with Hell. He knows the fear that is played against the souls rotting within the fiery depths. (Slightly AU)
There are five cracks in the ceiling, six spots on the wall where the paint is chipping, one oddly shaped hole to the left of the bathroom door and the table leans slightly to the right. When he starts to count the numerous stains on the carpet, Dean finally realizes he needs to either get out or go to sleep. Getting some fresh air definitely seems more appealing.
The old fashion alarm clock between the beds reads midnight, meaning it's only been about twenty minutes since Sam's fallen asleep but it feels like it's been hours. Dean's eyes drift to his brother's sleeping form; his head turned toward Dean, hair covering his eyes and making him look no older than eight.
There's absolutely no way Dean could sleep now. On top of his own nightmares of hell he knows his mind will plague him with thoughts of Sam's as well.
How could someone like Sam end up somewhere as awful as Hell and how could Dean possibly believe in God if nothing had been done to save his brother.
He wants to be pissed at Sam for giving him more to think about and pissed at God for letting it happen, but he knows the only person he's angry at is himself. His life has always revolved around two things, one always falling above the other, but somehow he's let that slip.
Since he's been back from hell he's done so much to fix up the Impala, slightly frustrated that Sam hadn't paid his baby much attention. And right there is where he should have realized things just weren't right.
He's been in hell for four months, left his brother all alone, and yet he seriously expected Sam to take excellent care of a car? He should have seen Sam had barely taken care of himself let alone the Impala, but he's not even sure he's given Sam much though since he's been back. What the hell kind of brother does that make him?
So he has a few tormenting memories flashing in his head every time he closes his eye. Apparently Sam's had to deal with his memories for a year, and then on top of that had the knowledge that Dean would be in that same place.
Dean probably should have seen it coming, or at least had some kind of doubt about his brother's afterlife. Sam's real life had been hell, why not send the kid to the pit and make him suffer more.
Back than Dean hadn't known everything he does now, which actually made it all ten times worse. His doubts about God still pull at the back of his head, especially after recent events.
Angels are apparently real though and if these angels have the power to pull Dean out of Hell, then what the heck were they doing when Sam was there? If anyone deserved saving it was Sam.
Dean stands quickly, unable to sit in the room any longer as his thoughts suffocate him. He grabs his jacket from the chair and heads for the door, sparing Sam one last look before exiting the room into the cool night air.
He pulls the keys from his pocket as he heads toward the trunk, wanting nothing more than to down the half empty bottle of whiskey he keeps there. That's become the only way he's willing to deal with his problems as of late, swallowing them in the numbness of alcohol.
The wind picks up suddenly, causing the hairs on Dean's neck to stand in alertness. He turns around slowly, knowing exactly what, or who, he will find standing in the darkness.
"You're about the last person I want to see right now."
Castiel sighs and lowers his head for a second before bringing his eyes back up to meet Dean's. Had the situation been different, Dean probably would have laughed at the idea that an angel could look or feel guilty.
"I came to set things straight," Dean shakes his head and turns back to the car, finally opening the trunk and pulling out the whiskey. "Sam wasn't of interest until you went to hell."
"That just lovely," He twists the cap free so aggressively that he thinks for a second the bottle might shatter, and wouldn't that be a funny bit of irony. "So my brother rots in hell and you think nothing of it until I'm in the same situation a year later? What makes Sam any less important than me?"
"One life is no more important than another, Dean Winchester."
"Then why the fuck didn't you save him?" Dean's voice rises and he instinctively moves forward toward the angel. "You could have saved him! You could have stopped his suffering, his doubts about his humanity, his doubts in me and God! He was a good kid."
"Are you saying he is no longer a good man?"
"No!" His anger flies to a new level and he can't stop himself from throwing his bottle across the parking lot. "Do not use my words against me! You and your buddies decide I'm worth saving only to tell me I have to stop my brother from being evil? You put these doubts in my head! You turned me into this horrible brother."
Finally Dean turns away with a sigh, feeling even worse. He hasn't said the words out loud yet but that seems to put things into perspective.
Dean's doubted Sam ever since Castiel showed him what happened to his brother. He's been so caught up on Sam possibly not being Sam that he forgot about being Dean.
He's noticed how far he and Sam have started drifting apart but he has done nothing to stop it from happening. Anger, fear and suspicion have become the only three emotions ruling his life.
The last time he can remember showing any sign that he cared about Sam was when they finally reunited after Hell tore them apart. All he's done since then is fight with Sam about powers and Ruby. He's thrown all his doubt straight in Sam's face yet Sam stuck by his side.
"You still care about your brother." Castiel's deep voice pulls him from his thoughts.
"Bang up job I did of showing it." He confesses with a small smirk.
"You were willing to give up Anna to save him."
"I actually thought about it though," Dean closes his eyes and runs his hand through his hair, letting it rest against the back of his neck. "I thought about it, Cas. It wasn't a quick decision like it usually is. What the hell is wrong with me?"
"You're scared," The angel takes a step forward and gently places a hand on Dean's shoulder. "I did not help you much but I am here to change that. You're brother needs you, Dean. He is still the little brother you remember, but only when his big brother is there."
"Why did you tell me I had to stop him," His voice remains soft even though there is still anger in his words. "You made me think he was a monster. I can't believe I let myself think that."
"Sam's powers are his connection to Hell."
"As long as your brother continues to use his powers, Hell will continue to hold his soul."
"He wasn't using his powers the first time."
"Azazel was still alive. The blood tie was still there."
"Even if Sam stops, the blood would still be in his veins."
"The blood is similar to a muscle in Sam's case. The more Sam uses his powers the stronger the connection becomes."
"Okay so by not using them he will still carry the blood but he won't have a connection to hell?"
"Correct," Castiel smiles slightly. "Sam's powers allow Hell to keep track of him and if Sam uses them they will have grounds to claim his soul since the powers are a gift from a demon."
"Sam doesn't know this?"
"No," The angel's smile falls instantly and he looks away from Dean. "The demon your brother is working with does though, which is why their relationship must end."
Even if Dean has suspected it all along, hearing it confirmed does not make him feel any better, especially after he practically thanked the bitch for helping Sam. Yeah she may have kept Sam from getting himself killed but at what cost?
"Why didn't you guys stop him?"
"We tried," Their eyes meet again, conveying the truth in the angel's words. "We couldn't reach Sam. By using his Demon powers he was blocking us. We also could not risk appearing to him with ruby around. Sam most likely would not have listened to us anyways. He had started losing his faith shortly after you were gone."
"So is this why I was resurrected?"
"One of the reasons, yes." The angel gestures toward the brother's motel room. "You're brother is too vulnerable without you around, you were the only person who could cease his activities or so we had hoped. You are also a strong asset to our defense. We needed you to keep the evil at bay."
"Sam wasn't doing enough of that?"
"Sam was helping but also destroying himself. He needed to be saved as did you. The two of you, together, are what will help us win this war."
"You saved me so that I could save Sam?"
Dean smiles, "I can do that."
"We know," Castiel smiles as well, placing his hand on Dean's shoulder once more. "You are a good brother, Dean. I never meant to make you doubt yourself or Sam, but if Sam does not stop, the only way to save his soul is for us to intervene and unfortunately that is not a pleasant ending either."
"Well it won't come to that." Dean stands straighter, feeling better about himself and the reason behind his redemption. "He's still my little brother, I can save him."
"That is what you're best at," The angel chuckles, enjoying the life that has been restored in Dean. "Sam is still Sam and with you around he will no longer need the comfort that Demon has been pretending to supply. Go to him, Dean, he needs you."
Castiel raises his hand slowly to touch Dean's forehead and Dean recognizes the gesture a second before his eyes snap open once more. He gasps slightly at the surprise of being back in the motel room, lying flat on the bed across from his brother's.
A murmur from beside him draws his attention and he turns his head to the side only to find Sam burying his head into the pillow. For all the nights Dean's woken up to Sam's nightmares, he wonders just how many he's missed.
It's been over a year since Sam's been in hell, he's confessed to remembering, and that most likely means he's had similar nightmares in the nights before Dean went to hell. He can only imagine the nightmares that plagued the kid while Dean wasn't here.
"Dean," The sound is so quiet that he almost misses.
Sam's head remains buried in the pillow but Dean can hear the mumbled words as he climbs out of his own bed and makes his way to Sam's. He takes a seat beside his brother and gently rests his hand on the back of Sam's head.
"Sammy," He whispers. "Wake up, buddy, it's just a dream."
"No, please," Sam turns his head from side to side frantically, face digging into the pillow further. "Dean!"
"Sammy!" In a flash, Sam jumps awake, almost knocking Dean backwards as he turns on to his back. "I'm right here."
"Hi," Sam smiles slightly, running his hand through his sweating locks, cheeks flushed with embarrassment.
"Hi," Dean lets himself smile as well, reaching his hand out to cup Sam's neck. "How you feeling?"
"You and me both, brother."
"Thanks," Sam's eyes drop to his hands, now folded in his lap. "You know, for being here."
"I'm sorry I've been such an ass lately, Sam," Dean's hand slips to Sam's chin, forcing their eyes to meet. "I should have seen that all of this affected you too, and I'm sorry I didn't."
"You were in hell, Dean."
"Yeah and apparently so were you. I know you understand that things are a little crazy for me right now and I appreciate that but it's no excuse for how I've been treating you."
"Well you have been a bit different."
"Yeah," Sam laughs softly. "You're a bit of a pansy lately."
"Real nice, Sam," He tries to feign anger but he ends up laughing himself. "I guess our roles reversed a little, huh?"
"I guess, but can we go back to normal now?" Dean laughs again, the look on Sam's face and the tone in his voice reminding Dean too much of the little boy Sam used to be.
"I think so. You're not a good me, anyways."
"I'm just not big brother material."
"Luckily, I am." He smiles and pats Sam on the shoulder as he stands up and moves back to his own bed. "It's the role I was born to play."
"Yeah," Dean's smile falters a tad, contemplating the idea of telling Sam everything Castiel had told him. Sam's eyes start to fall close though, a smile spreading his lips, and Dean decides it's best to leave everything just the way it is. Things are back to normal, or as normal as they could get, and he would save Sam. That was one mission he would never fail. "Thank, God."
Thank you all for reading! I hope you enjoyed this chapter as much as the first.
Please let me know what you thought, even if you didn't like it at all, I still would love to hear from you.
I'm pretty sure this is where I'm ending it cause there really is no where else to go unless I started my own new supernatural season haha, but you never know with me.