A/N: Here's a one shot as a thank you to all the amazing friends I have that made my birthday such a memorable experience for me. This has been a great year and I'm so thankful to all you sweet girls that wished me well.

ST, this isn't the only thing in the works for you sweetie. Look for a return of the gift. Gill, Jean, Mish, Veronica, Spela, Rach…You are some of the greatest people I've had the pleasure to talk to and get to know. Love ya girls! To all the others in the Winchester Single Shots group, you made my day with the wishes and thoughts!

If you all are wondering what I'm rambling about check out Skag Trendy's story Hunter Of The Shadows. She's writing it for me and it totally rocks! It will be amazing to the end. Blue Peanut has given me the gift of two amazing stories and Sammygirl63, Soncnica, V.R. Jennings and DancerInTheDark101 have given me chapters and stories. The WSS group made my day( check out my profile for our stories as they progress) and Merisha gave me the most beautiful cover art for my story WAR ZONE. It's on deviant art if you wanna see. Also on my profile. Check out the fic if you wanna see which scene she made real for me!

So, This is a small thank you to all of you. Love ya all and enjoy the moments to come. But before you ask, this is complete as it is. There will be no more because I'm trying to focus on another project at the moment, but if things go the way we want for WSS, you may see this again in my contribution to the grand finale. Title from Matchbox Twenty.

Back to Good

Dean stood from the bed in the motel room, turning as a cool breeze washed over him. His shadowed green eyes caught sight of a figure in the room. He reached for the hunting knife he kept under his pillow only to find it gone.

"Who the hell are you?"

"It's me, Dean."

"Dad?" Dean said, standing straight as his mouth trembled just slightly.

"Yeah Deano it's me." John Winchester said as he stepped from the shadows. He was the same as ever, Dean noticed, looking over the features of his father that he so missed. The salt and pepper beard still covered a couple scars on his face. His eyes, still the eyes of John Winchester, bored into his oldest son, even while remaining haunted and distant.

"But, I thought…you… y'know…moved on? I mean ya got outta hell and…"

"I did Dean. I've been watching. I know how you're feeling, what you went through, how it weighs on you. You need your father so I'm here."

"We needed you before. I needed you. What's so different about now? Why show up now?" He asked, crossing his arms over his chest.

"You need to know what you're facing Dean. The angels, they can't tell you. I can."

"What?" Dean asked, standing straight again.

"You know what was started, what was forced on you while you were in hell. You know what's happening now. You know the angels want you to stop it."


"I know you can Dean." John said, moving closer but still remaining out of reach.

"Yeah, well I wouldn't be so sure. I'm not exactly something to be proud of am I?"

"Yes. You are. Dean, you are a warrior. A hero. It's in your blood. I knew that when you were ten years old and hunting with me. You looked after your brother better than I ever could. He's at the center of this, on one side, and being pulled in deeper. You're right there with him, being pulled to the other side. It's not the way to go. You need to stand with your brother, hold him at your side. It's the only way to save him, Dean. It's the only way to win this war, like you're supposed to, like you're destined to."

"He keeps pulling away. The damn secrets and lies…"

"You were the only one who could reach him, even so many years ago. Draw on that and ya will get through to him. You're the only one who can save him."

"Dad…I don't know if I'm strong enough. I mean, I feel like all of me didn't come back." Dean said wearily scrubbing a hand over his face as his legs went out from under him and he sat back on the bed just to keep from hitting the floor. "What if I can't do this…what the angels want, what Sam needs me to do?"

John stepped forward once more, crouching in front of his son, a strong hand on his knee. He squeezed once. "Listen to yourself, what did you just say Dean?"

"What if I can't?"

"Not that."

"What Sam needs me to do."

"That's it Dean. You've always done what Sam needs ya to do. It's been built into you since Sammy was born. You know what to do. Just stop listening to that part of you that thinks you're weak. You're far from it. You've fought against something every single day of your life, and you won. You can win this too."

"What makes you so sure?" Dean asked in a near whisper, his eyes looking to a point just beyond where his father' s hand still rested on his knee. "I mean, how do I know if I'm…"

"Son, you will. When the time comes you won't have to know, you'll just do." John squeezed Dean's knee once more and stood. Dean looked up sharply, as John took a step back, fear flickering across his face.


"Fight Dean." John said, stepping back into the shadows. Lights from a passing semi flicked over Dean's face, momentarily blinding him. He blinked harshly.

And sat up on the bed with a gasp as a loud bang woke him. The room door slammed open, knob embedding itself deep into the into the drywall as the hinges sprung. Sam bolted from his own bed to stand at the foot of Dean's facing the door. Dean grabbed Ruby's knife from it's resting place and stood by his brother.

Sam raised a hand as four demons pushed through the door, his eyes glinting dangerously in the dim lighting as four sets of pitch black orbs flicked between him and Dean.

"Sammy." Dean said, stepping shoulder to shoulder with Sam, raising the knife. "If we do this…we fight…we do it together, side by side." Dean said, putting a shoulder slightly in front of Sam as the demons advanced. Sam lowered his hand, his blue green eyes meeting Dean's. He nodded and stepped forward, bumping shoulders with Dean as he licked his lips and began to fight.

"Regna terrae, cantate Deo, psallite Domino qui fertis…" His words faded into the background as Dean met the first demon head on, the knife glinting in the dim lighting of the room before an arc of red light flashed through the first demon. Dean pulled the knife and staggered under the weight of the body as it slumped. Another demon slammed into him from behind, taking him hard to the floor. Another arc of red light brightened the room as the knife once more found it's mark.

Sam was still chanting as he grabbed the demon who'd rushed him, holding onto the squirming host tightly as he recited the words he still knew by heart even though they hadn't been used in months. The demon roared and threw back his head, preparing to vacate the host. Sam clamped a hand tight over the man's mouth, reinforcing the grip with a burst of power until another demon plowed into Sam, taking him hard to the dingy motel carpet. His cheek split under the man's fist. Dean shrugged off the weight of the other dead host and plunged the bloody knife into the demon's back as he fought with Sam. He felt the knife ripped from his hand as the final remaining demon flung out a hand and knocked him across the room. Dean hit hard, his head clipping the bathroom door frame, before he sagged to the carpet, half in and half out of the bathroom.

Sam kicked the last demon, sweeping his legs out from under him. The demon went down on his back in the center of the devil's trap that lay beneath the rug at the foot of Sam's bed. Sam used the momentum to flip over atop the man and held him down, picking up the chanting of the exorcism again. "Ut Ecclesiam tuam secura tibi facias libertate servire, te rogamus, audi nos. Ut inimicos sanctae Ecclesiam humiliare digneris, te rogamus, audi nos." The demon roared as black smoke issued from his mouth and filtered into the devil's trap in a red haze. Dean had pushed himself up on his elbows and looked at Sam as Sam slid away from the demon to land on his ass next to Dean. Sam looked at his brother, wiping blood from his split lip and smearing it over his face when his hand brushed the split on his cheekbone.

"We fight…" Sam said, panting before he pulled in a breath and released it on a harsh exhale, "…side by side."

Dean grinned, blood on his forehead and lip catching the light as he tipped his head. "We fight."

Thanks so much for reading! Please let me know what you think.

Oh and don't forget to check out Winchester Single Shots. A bunch of the girls now including 1Pagan3 and Dianne have been working so hard to bring wonderful one shots to the project that has turned into so much fun. There's a complete list of players on my profile and a lot of theirs.