Since I've Been Loving You
Sam Winchester sat cross-legged and expectantly on the dark green coloured carpet. He was careful not to let his hands touch the itchy, scratchy fabric. He was suddenly glad that he had worn his dark denim jeans, a hand me down from his older brother Dean, which were still far too big, even after his father saying he would grow into them for the past three mounts, instead of his shorts.
It was late May; a hot, lazy feel to the air and Sam Winchester was six years old. His enter class had assembled for 'carpet time' and were perched messily about the green fabric in front of Mrs Grey, their teacher.
Peter Walsh was talking loudly and pulling Lucy Blackburn's long, blonde hair. The small girl half screamed in annoyance more than anything else and struck the boy sharply with the ball of her fist on his shoulder, he promptly let go of her hair and burst into tears. Mrs Grey shouted something at them, moving over.
Sam didn't notice, being preoccupied in an intense conversation with Jake Manners and Simon Kripke about Saturday's episode of Heman. The discussion had become quite heated when Mrs Grey returned to sitting on the large, soft paddled blue chair at the front and 'shhed' he class.
"Ok, boy and girls!" She grasped her hands together enthusiastically and smiled. She had bright blue eyes and gave an edge of delight in the world. When she spoke it was like you were the only one there, and when one of the children were talking she really listened, like they were adults and their views on Power Rangers was as important as the signing of world peace treaties. Sam liked her, she was a kind woman and a devoted teacher, who seemed to look fondly on the youngest Winchester.
"Today," she continued. "We are going to talk about what we want to be when we grow up." She leaned forward in her seat, using her hands expressively as she talked. "It can be anything in the world, a police man or woman, an actor, a theme park designer. Anything!" Her joy was contagious and enthralling, seeming to catch the children under her spell.
"We're going to write a story about what you are going to be when you are older, but first, we'll go around and hear your ideas." Mrs Grey beamed at her class. "Ok, who's first?" Every single person shot up their hands, quiet whispers of 'me, me!' were repeated by twenty voices.
"So many choices," she surveyed the class, humming. "Jacob." There was a small groan as Jacob grinned and a vast and sudden dropping of arms. Mrs Grey laughed, the sound of the chiming of silver bells. "Don't worry, everyone will get a turn." Sam smiled at her, and turned to watch Jacob, pondering what he wanted to be.
"When I am older, I want to be an astronaut. And I'll fly a rocket, and be on telly, and shoot bad aliens with my laser gun!" The young boy got over excited in his rendition and began to 'zap' fellow class members with his hand, producing a high pitched zing as he did.
The previously calmed class turned into pure chaos in the blink of a banshee's eye. Some shouted and laughed, pretending to die in the mass of laser beams, others, brandishing their hands like ray guns of their own, fought back against the sudden attacker, Sam Winchester and his friends belonged to the later group.
It took Mrs Grey almost ten minutes to quiet the class again. Sam didn't mind, he had shot most of the attacking horde, and shot them again when they had come, annoyingly, back to life.
"Right, ok." Mrs Grey began; eager to put the mayhem behind her. "Who wants to go next?" Another sea of arms was raised. Jacob pulled a face, his arms crossed in an act of defiance, he hadn't finished explaining about being an astronaut.
"Kelly." There was another small groan. "What do you want to be when you are grown up?" The small, dark eyed child beamed brightly, hunching her shoulders up slightly before she began.
"When I am grown up," she said, speaking in an almost near perfect imitation of an adult "I will be married… And have five children…" She raised her hand, fingers and thumb outstretched to demonstrate. Mrs Grey smiled at her. "And be President Of The United States." Kelly crossed her arms, chin held high. The teacher couldn't help but grin wider, the small child made running the country seem like not so much as an afterthought, but more of a less important job, less taxing than looking after children. She suppressed a small laugh.
It probably was.
"Girls can't be Presidents!" A young boy called Paul Cooper shouted.
"They can too!" Kelly shouted back.
"No they can't, you're just a big stupid head!" He retorted. Before Mrs Grey could intervene, there was another clamour.
"No she's not a big stupid head! There was a lady President in England." Sam Winchester pointed his tongue out at Paul after he spoke.
"Ok!" Mrs Grey raised her voice once more. "Paul, there can be female Presidents, there just has not been one yet. Kelly, that sounds like a very interesting idea," the teacher gave a quick glance to Sam, but said nothing for his previous comment, even though you were not usually aloud to speak with out your hand up. "What would you do as president?"
As Kelly began her tail she smiled brilliantly at Sam in a show of thanks. He returned the expression.
"Who's next? Hmm…" Mrs Grey surveyed the children, "Sam." The young Winchester's eyes lit up and he grinned, dimples showing. Mrs Grey always felt a connection to Sam; he was a smart child, with a kind nature, hopeful.
His idea would be refreshing, colourful and well described.
He swallowed, and began.
"When I am all grown up, I am going to be a Jedi, with a blue light sabre, and I am going to be married too," he sent a look to Kelly who smiled again and nodded like she was allowing him to use her idea.
"And I am gonna be married to my brother, Dean." He beamed majestically, proud of himself. The smiled almost dropped from Mrs grey's face; she struggled to keep it there, confusion breaking through her expression. Surely she had heard wrong.
Before she could speak or even formulate a question in her mind, Paul Cooper shouted,
"You can't marry your brother, you dumb head!"
"Paul!" Mrs Grey snapped. "Do not call others 'dumb head'!"
"You can too!" Sam spoke back to him, ignoring his teacher, his voice drawn out and his eyes squinted slightly, giving him the air of superiority, and making Paul to be the idiotic one.
"My Dad says that you marry someone who you love and care about, stupid. And I love and care about my brother. So I'm gonna marry him."
There was an awed silence from the class. Mrs Grey herself, for once, did not know what to say.I am going to have to talk to his father… She thought.
"Wish I could marry my brother…" Paul grumbled, defeated.
At three fifteen, Sam Winchester rushed out of school to meet his brother Dean.
The older boy was leaning casually against the faded red brick wall directly outside of the school building. He was wearing sunglasses that were a little too big for him, Dad's probably, Sam figured, the glare of the dancing sun rebounded brightly, his legs were crossed carelessly. He was wearing heavy dark jeans and a black oversized Metallica T-shirt, even in the unbarring heat.
Sam bounded up to his brother, his large satchel thundering on his shoulder with every rushed step, it swung violently and kept threatening to abandon his arm completely. He knew he should not be wearing it hanging precariously on one shoulder, but with the strap diagonally across his torso.
He didn't, because Dean didn't. Sam wanted to be like his big brother so much, wanted to have the air of utter coolness that his brother did. He never wanted to leave his side.
The sun beat down harshly on the already over baked earth, cracks and tears widening as the sun continued its path across the mass of dirty blue sky.
"Dean!" Sam let out a small squeal of delight as he smashed into his brother, grabbing hold of him violently in a hug. His full force did not even seem to budge Dean an inch.
"Hey there." Dean patted his little brother's head, which reached about chest high, he ruffled the floppy hair gently before gabbing hold of the younger sibling and noogieing him hard on the forehead.
Sam yelped and tried to duck away, Dean let him, after a moment or two.
The small boy rubbed his head, half-scowling, half-laughing. The elder just grinned.
"Ready to go home, Sammy?" He asked, thumbs hooked in his pockets.
"Yah! Home!" He raised his hands energetically in the air and jumped, causing his bag to whack him hard in the back. Dean smiled, half shaking his head.
"Ok, let's get a move on then solider." He mimicked their father's voice almost perfectly, but left out the harshness of the tone that usually accompanied those words.
Sam beamed at his brother as they walked home, swinging furiously on his brother's hand, spinning around in circles as he regaled Dean with his school day.
The elder listened intently, nodding and laughing at all the right places.
When they were about half way home, they stopped at a corner shop and Dean bought Sam a bright red ice lolly, saying it would keep him quiet. Or 'shut his pie hole' as he elegantly put it. While he really thought about wanting to keep him cool, and spent five minutes looking at base ball caps, worrying out the dangers of heat stoke on six year old kids.
After they had left, he had grabbed hold of Sam's satchel, slinging it comfortably over his shoulder, saying that he didn't want Sam drop his lolly, moan, and then have to buy another one because his bag kept whacking him. Which, was true, but he didn't want Sam to struggle with it's weight anymore either.
Why couldn't the kid just put the strap over his torso, like it was met to be worn?
Dean sighed silently and shook his head, as Sam jabbered on, his lips and area around them stained red, his fingers sticky as the melting lolly juice rolled down them. He slurped at the treat every other word. Clutching it as if it were some Holy Grail.
A smile tugged at the corners of Dean's mouth.
"And then, I said I was gonna be a Jedi!" He bit into the lolly once more. "And I was gonna be married to you, I didn't say how many kids we'd have, like Kelly did, 'cause I don't know. 'Cause Dad said you never know exactly how many kids you would have," he mimicked the work 'exactly' in a poor imitation of their father's tone. If Sam was honest, he wasn't one hundred percent sure of what the word met, but Dad had said it, so it must be a good, grown up, serious word to use.
Sam tried to use as many of 'Dad's Words' as he could when Dean was around. He wanted to impress his big brother. Wanted them to talk like Dean and his father talked.
Sam was talking so fast it took the elder Winchester a moment for the information to correlate correctly in his brain. He paused, double-checking it.
"So then Mrs Grey said she might want to talk to Dad some time. I wasn't sure if that was ok, but she said she was gonna, well was, gonna call him, so that's ok." He was talking so fast; he tripped over his words.
"And then me and Jake were talking about Heman, and Jake said,"
"Sammy." Dean spoke a little louder, catching hold of his brother's shoulder.
The younger boy stopped, and turned to look at Dean, while sucking on his lolly.
"Hmmmm?" He answered though a mouthful of red, his large brown eyes glazing up to his brother's face.
"What was that about marriage Sammy?" He asked, carefully, a slight look of confusion on his face. Surely he had heard wrong.
The little boy grinned.
"When I am older, I'm gonna get married."
"Uh-huh… Too who Sam?"
Dean paused. Ok… Didn't expect that today…
"Erm…" The elder brother ran a hand through his hand, how was he going to explain this one? Sam looked up hopefully, and expectantly at him. "We can't get married Sam."
The young boy frowned.
"Erm, well… Boys don't really," Well that's a lie straight away… "Brother's don't…"
Sam looked up at him, a pout tensing his features. He didn't understand. Dean sighed.Awh Hell…
"When two people marry…" He cleared his throat. "They become family…Erm… And we're already family Sammy…" There, that should sort things out.
The young boy paused, thinking deeply.
"So? Dad said that you marry someone who you love and care about. And I love and cared about you Dean." He blushed slightly as he said the words.
The elder Winchester blinked heavily. Oh Dad, seriously, brilliant choice of words…
"Erm," Well, I might as well be blunt, get it over with. "I can't marry you Sammy-"
"You don't want to marry me?" Sam's voice cracked at the end of the sentence, his lips beginning to tremble.
"No!" Dean reached out to him. Oh God Sammy, don't cry. "I mean, Sam, it's complicated,"
"You don't care about me?" He asked, his voice so small.
Oh, I'm gonna regret this…
"You know what, I was joking with you Sam, just fooling." He swallowed. I can't believe I'm doing this. "Of course I'll marry you… But we have to wait until… Err… Until we're older…"
There was a pause, Dean held his breath. Sam frowned deeply thinking.
"Yah!" The young boy grinned. Dean's mouth hung open in confusion of a moment.
Sam turned and carried on walking, his brother stumbling after him in shock. The younger Winchester took a large bit of his lolly, and licked the juice running over his fingers.
"And then Jack said that the next episode of Heman was gonna have Heman's son it in, but I don't believe him." He carried on talking.
Kids. Dean thought.Present Day
"Dean! What the Hell?! What have you done to my IPod?!" Sam yelled, flicking through the tracks on the MP3. He sat in shotgun in the Impala, Dean in the drivers seat.
They were in a parking lot in Mishergan, they had just checked out of a motel after finishing a poltergeist case.
"I "Vamped" it up." Dean shrugged, trying to hide his grin.
"Where's all my stuff?!" Sam asked exasperated. "All that's on here is your Mullet rock!" He said the words with disgust.
"Well, I was using your laptop to get some tracks on there, thought I'd give it a go myself, since you're always complaining when I ask you to do it for me… And I guess I must have deleted all your songs." He raised his hands up in the air and faked innocence. "Such a shame."
"Dean." Sam stared at him, face twitching in aggravation. "You are… I'm gonna…" He breathed out sharply through his nose.
The elder brother's face suddenly went serious, he lend towards his sibling, placing a hand on his.
"Sam," he said, locking eyes. "It's ok, you can marry me if you want…" His voice broke at the last few words as Dean irrupted into a fit of laughter. He smacked the steering wheel with his hands and threw his head back as he cackled away.
Sam sent him a venomous look.
"Hilarious Dean," he spat. I'm never going to live that down. "I was six."
As the laughter subsided Dean managed to speak.
"You know what Sam? You're right." The younger suddenly felt hopeful, maybe Dean was growing up after all. "It is hilarious."
Sam gave him another look, Dean grinned back at him, pulling the Ipod away as he did so, and choosing a song.
'Since I've Been Loving You' by Led Zepplin began to play through the speakers, Dean started the car, and kissed air at his brother.
"It's a good thing we've never got older Sammy, otherwise," he ruffled his brother's hair, Sam slapped his hand away. "I'd have to marry you."