BETA: Vonnie, Thank you so much for your awesome beta work and support.
** This chapter is dedicated to my beta and friend and big sister "Vonnie". I love you Didi. **
A/N: - Well, last and final chapter. Thank you so much to all who read and reviewed my story. Without you friends…you know what…THANK YOU FRIENDS.
***~**~ EPILOGUE ~**~***
It was almost noon; bright sunrays were peeking through the blinds of the hospital windows. The lights in the room had been kept at low power. Dean stifled a big yawn and blinked widely a couple of times. He was sitting on the hard plastic chair for the last two hours. Sam was sleeping, peacefully. The gentle sounds of his breathing were filling the whole silent room, especially Dean's ears. Sam was looking so serene in his slumber; Dean smiled at the sight of his baby brother's innocent face and swept some hairs from Sam's forehead. Dean frowned a little, Sam's forehead was slightly hot to touch but he seemed okay. It was two days since Sam came back to him and started to get better. Though he was still weak, couldn't keep his eyes open more than half an hour; at least he was lucid.
Dean leaned back in the chair and stretched his legs wide and his arms upwards at the same time. God, he was tired. He knew he seriously needed some decent sleep but his heart wasn't ready to accept it. He slept a couple of times keeping his head on Sam's hospital bed, but jerked awake when he heard a mere whimper escaping from Sam's lips and comforted him from whatever pain and distress he was feeling. Sometimes, Dean woke up abruptly with the thought of Sam whimpering and being in pain, but then he realized it was only his imaginations. Sam was deeply asleep in his medicated slumber, but Dean's big brother mode was in high gear and he wasn't ready to leave his 'Mother Henning' duty that easily.
Dean again stifled a large yawn like he was going to gulp the whole world up and didn't realize he was doing it loudly. He startled and clamped his mouth shut mid way when he heard a weak voice coming from the patient bed.
"Dean, go get some rest. You look beat." Sam stated in a sleepy childlike voice.
"Sammy, you awake?" Dean quickly leaned over his little brother and placed a comforting hand on his. Although he was feeling a little guilty for waking his brother up due to his large yawn honk.
"Nah, you're hallucinating." Sam snorted.
Dean chuckled, "Wise a**."
Sam rubbed his eyes with his knuckles to wipe the rest of his sleeps away. Like always, Dean smiled at the sight, 'Jeez, he always looks like five years old when he does that' and shook his head.
"What what Sammy?"
"What are you smiling for?" Sam asked as he tried to lever himself up to a sitting position. Dean got up quickly and helped his still somewhat fragile brother. "Nothing." He fluffed the pillows and settled them behind his brother's back, repositioning himself on the seat again.
Sam stared at him quizzically for some moments and flung his hand in the air, "Okay, you gotta stop this."
"Stop what Sammy?" Dean arched his eyebrows.
"Fussing over me, Dean." Sam sounded a little annoyed and Dean smirked. Sam huffed and whined, "I'm serious Dean. You are doing nothing but mother henning me for…for forty eight hours without remission man! That's…that's suffocating me dude."
"No, I'm not." Dean tried to defend himself.
"Yes, you are. Since I woke up, you are going all Florence Nightingale on me Dean. And…and what was that?" Sam pouted.
"What?" Dean asked innocently.
Sam rolled his eyes and gestured as he was fluffing pillow, "That…you're being ridiculous. Pillow fluffing dude! And…and all this weird fussiness like wiping my chin when I eat and if I roll on my side, you press the call button…driving the doctors and nurses nuts with your constant questions…hovering over me like I am some kind of new born baby…"
"Well, I'm not." Dean casually refuted and snickered like Sam was talking weird.
"B*tch." Dean chuckled.
Sam sighed and let his hands fall beside him. He chewed his lower lip and started again, "Dean I can understand…"
"No you can't." Dean's voice sounded cold and Sam flinched slightly at the tone.
"Dean, you can't let this continue. I know what you are thinking. But…but I'm okay man…"
"No you're NOT." Dean suddenly barked at him and jumped up form his seat. He walked to the window and stared at the outside scenery. But he wasn't concentrating at anything. He gritted his teeth and pressed his lips together hard.
"Dean?" Sam's soft voice came again.
Dean turned towards Sam and swallowed. His eyes were kind off cloudy. He licked his lips and started, "Sam, I…I know you're not okay. I put you in this state Sammy. I was being such a jerk with you since…" Dean took a deep breath and looked at the tiled floor, "…since Dad died. I…I…should have looked after you…"
"No." Dean raised an arm and Sam stopped, "Let me finish. I have to. Sammy, I'm sorry I treated you like you were a waste of my time, when I should'a taken care of you. I should'a looked after you when you were so sick. But I didn't." Dean eyes were almost welling as he swallowed his emotions, "And I…I don't blame you that you hid your illness from me. You must have tried, but I was so consumed with my own sorrow and self loathing, like he was only my Dad. I should'a remembered he was…he was your dad too Sammy." A single tear rolled down his cheek.
Sam's eyes were wailing as he heard Dean's confession. God, he was waiting for this moment for so long, but today was different. Today he knew, Dean was there with him and always be with him. When his father died, Dean's behavior and withdrawal from everything around him made him think that Dean might not come back to him. But today, he knew that this was the Dean he knew from his childhood. His hero, his protector…his reasons of living. He was the Dean Sam had come back for, he was the one for whom Sam didn't give up. But today, he didn't need Dean's self accusation because he already knew that his big brother was there for him.
"I know Dean…" Sam rasped in a soft voice, "…I know what you did, but you didn't mean it. Dad…dad was a big part of your life; I'm not saying that he didn't love me. I know Dean, he loved me. Mom told me, Dean."
"Sammy?" Dean came closer to Sam's bed and sat at the side of it.
Sam fiddled with his blanket and choked back a sob, "Dean, you aren't the one to blame. I am the one who did many things wrong. I kept pushing and pushing cuz…" Sam sniffed and looked up at his brother, "…cuz I was afraid I might loose you Dean. And…and I didn't wanna loose you…"
"Then why Sam? Why did you head out to make a deal? You think I could live if something happened to you?" Dean's voice broke again at the thought how close he had come to loosing his little brother.
"I…I thought if I bring back Dad to you again, you…you would be happy again. You would be the old Dean I knew." Sam looked up at Dean sadly.
Dean cupped Sam's face with both hand and didn't even realize it, "At what cost Sam? Exchanging you? How could you…I can't loose you Sam…not for anything…not even for Dad Sammy. I don't know what I would do if…if I lost you…" Dean was crying.
Sam suddenly hugged his brother and cried, "I'm sorry Dean. I am so sorry. I wasn't thinking…I…I won't do it again Dean. No more deal, Dean."
Dean draped his hands over Sam's back and rocked him. He whispered, "No more deal, Sammy. That's the deal, no more deal with the demons."
Dean woke up at the constant ringing noise filling the whole room. He rolled on the bed and turned the alarm off on his cell phone. He brought his left arm in front of his face and yawned, "What's the time…" and sat abruptly, "…oh God, it's already 8:00 a.m. and I am late as usual." He quickly got up and ran towards the bathroom, closing the door with a thud.
Today was special for Dean, today Sam would be released from the hospital. After one week of hospitalization and so many tests and examinations the doctor confirmed that Sam was ready to go home. Though Sam was ready since two days ago and he was driving Dean nuts about signing AMA papers. But Dean didn't agree; he coolly refused Sam's entire request, puppy dog glares and everything that Sam Winchester could muster. Then Sam refused to talk with him for a couple of hours, but Dean wasn't ready to take any chances with his brother's health.
Last night after checking Sam thoroughly, Dr. Grant announced that Sam was doing okay and ready to leave tomorrow. That was, when Sam and Bobby told Dean to go Bobby's house and get some sleep. He wasn't agreeing at first but when Sam told him that if he wouldn't go home and rest, he wouldn't take any medicine or food or anything. That made Dean afraid though he muttered some cuss at Sam for being a b*tch but at last he reluctantly consented. He promised Sam that he would arrive at hospital early with some clean clothes since Sam's shirt and jeans he was wearing when he was brought into the hospital had been cut away.
After a real hot shower Dean was feeling like a human again. Now he understood, why he so urgently needed a decent night sleep and a hot shower to feel like himself again. He quickly changed into clean jeans and blue button down shirt and took his jacket. Then he went to Sam's duffel to retrieve some of his clothes, but shockingly he found nothing to wear. There were only a blue tee shirt which was already torn for overuse and jeans. That jeans were torn too and there was a big stain of blood. Dean swallowed as he remembered that was the clothing Sam had been wearing when the semi hit the impala. He rummaged the duffel again and pulled out a worn out jacket of Sam's. His eyes filled once again with unshed tears as he saw large blood patches still visible on the collar of the jacket. His brother's blood, Sammy's blood; Sammy didn't even replace his clothes with new one. He bought some new clothes for Dean, yet never even bothered to get some for himself. "Oh Sammy, why are you so good little brother…" Dean wiped away his tears and threw his brother's blood smeared clothes into the waste bin. He pulled his wallet out from his drawer and headed towards his newly assembled impala.
Sam was sitting on the edge of his bed, waiting for his brother. He was feeling good though he was still a little weak. His IV's had been removed two days ago and he was only having oral meds. He was getting stronger slowly but surely, but sometimes he was feeling real lightheaded. He knew it was the side effect of those heavy duty medications and the illness or strokes he had suffered, but he was sure it would leave soon.
He looked at the digital clock and sighed. It was already 10:30 a.m and Dean still hadn't showed up. Sam had taken his shower and meds but now he was dying to get out from this hell. Bobby had gone to Colorado Springs for some reason as Sam and Dean assured him that they would take it real easy and call if they needed. Sam chewed his lip as he thought where his brother could be now?
"Missed me Cinderella?" Dean's cheerful voice came from the door way and Sam startled.
"Jerk. Where have you been?" Sam asked annoyed.
"Well, traffic was a b*tch, b*tch." Dean smirked and Sam huffed, "Besides, there were some hot chicks at the department store, soooo…" Dean was laughing.
Sam was confused, "What the hell were you doing at a department store?"
Dean sat on the seat and put his legs on Sam's bed. Sam glared at him, but he didn't care, "Got something for ya Sammy." He threw some shopping bags on the bed and relaxed.
Sam quirked his eyebrows and rummaged through the bag. He pulled some new shirts, tee shirts, underwears and a couple of jeans from it and stared at them disbelievingly. 'Is Dean okay? Why did he buy so many expensive clothes and where did he get all the money?'
"Oh come on Sammy, those are clothes not chicks. Pick one of 'em and let's go." Dean was getting bored.
"Dean, you didn't have to do that. That's so much and man," Sam looked at the clothes again, "These are expensive."
Dean answered casually, "Well, I didn't pay for it, you did."
"I did?" Sam was totally confused now.
"Yeah. Remember you worked at Butch's diner and he forgot to give you your paycheck. Well, I personally visited him and politely asked for the due payment and he gave it to me, simple." Dean was smirking.
Sam stared at him incredulously, trying to calculate what to believe and what not. He knew he should have to deduct at least eighty percent of Dean's statement and then he could come to some conclusion. But he was too tired to argue and let the subject drop. He chose a light brown shirt with white and black stripes and jeans the cleared his throat, "Ahh, a little privacy here please."
Dean downed his legs from the bed and pulled the curtains, "Okay, I will be outside your door." He hesitated a little and spoke, "Holler at me, if you need any help." Sam nodded and Dean got out of the room.
Sam gingerly pulled on the tee shirt and put the button down over it. Getting into the jeans was really hard work for him since bending down always made him dizzy. Once he thought to call Dean for a help, but it would be too much embarrassment if his brother helped him to get him into his jeans.
After somehow finishing with his clothes, Sam got himself ready for the next hard work. He looked wearily at his socks and sneakers as he sat on the bed. He closed his eyes suddenly feeling so tired; the clothes changing had totally worn him out. He took some deep breaths and leaned down to take his shoes but it turned out to be a bad idea. As he bent the whole world swirled and he started to topple forward.
Suddenly his falling was stopped in mid way as someone grabbed his shoulders protectively and held him up. Sam squinted his eyes closed as the spinning sensation was still assaulting him. He could feel Dean was murmuring soothing words as he slowly leaned him against the headboard of the bed. Dean quickly held a glass to his brother's lips as he took some tentative sips. After Dean wiped the perspiration from his forehead with a cool rag, Sam opened his eyes and saw Dean's anxious face hovering in front of him.
"You feeling okay now, Sammy?" Dean anxiously asked and cupped his brother's face to calculate his brother's pain level.
"Yeah." Sam answered softly.
"Should I call the doctor?"
"No, I'm okay, just got a little dizzy." Sam inhaled sharply.
"Okay, let me help you with the shoes." Dean crouched and pulled the socks from the shoes.
Sam was embarrassed. Dean had already done enough for him, but now his big brother touching his legs and helping him to get into the socks ad shoes was too much for him. He weakly tried to protest…
"Shut up Sam." Dean softly berated and Sam stopped. He smiled a little as Dean carefully pulled the socks on and put his little brother's feet into the shoes. After finishing tying up laces, he grabbed the prescriptions and pill bottles from the table and put them into a bag.
Sam weakly pushed himself up from the bed as Dean snaked an arm around his shoulder and draped the other around his waist. With Dean's help Sam walked slowly to the door, where a wheelchair was waiting for him. Dean lowered his brother carefully into the wheelchair and frowned a little when Sam didn't whine about his chariot. 'He must be way too exhausted' Dean thought and pushed his brother towards the exit.
Dean was driving his baby peacefully and glanced occasionally at his 'other baby' Sam, who was currently staring out the window. 'Back in Black' was coming from the car stereo; Dean's constantly tapping the wheel. Sam seemed happy to get out of the hospital. He was exhausted but didn't nod off or take a nap during the car ride. He chatted casually with Dean at times but then got exhausted and stopped talking.
During the journey a place came in his view and he frowned, 'Butch's café and diner'. The memory of being insulted by Butch came to his mind, but he also remembered the rest of the crew of the shop especially Lucy and Jason who had helped him a lot in his bad time.
Sam fidgeted a little and asked, "Ahh, Dean!"
Dean nodded a 'what' and turned off the music.
"Can you pull over the car for a minute?"
Dean killed the engine parked the impala beside the pavement. "Why Sammy, are you feeling alright? You gonna hurl or something?" His big brother mode once again kicked into high gear.
Now Sam was annoyed, "Stop that, I'm okay. I just want to go over there." He gestured over to Butch's Diner.
"To that crap hole again, why Sam?" Dean was astonished.
Sam toyed with the hem of his shirt and answered softly, "Well, there are some friends of mine who…ah… helped me a lot when…when…I was sick and wasn't able to do my work properly. I…I just wanna say thanks to them if it's okay with you." Sam looked at him with pleading eyes.
Dean thought for a second and then said, "Okay, alright then. C'mon." Dean opened his door and then helped Sam get out of the car. He didn't break the hold of his brother's shoulder as they entered into the diner shop.
"Oh my god, Sam." Lucy spotted Sam within a second as they entered into the room. She put her tray on the table and came close to them. Sam gave her a shy dimpled smile,
Lucy just looked at the boy's face who had taken a special place in her heart. She hugged him tightly and kissed him on his cheek, "Oh, put the formalities aside boy, call me Lucy."
"Sorry Ma'am, I mean Lucy." Sam returned the hug with the same affection.
"Oh god, what happened after you left Sam? I was so worried about you." Lucy asked worriedly.
"Ahh, I was kinda sick after that Lucy and I had to be admitted to the hospital." Sam replied softly.
Lucy trailed her hands over Sam's face and head in a motherly way and asked, "You okay now Sam? You look so skinny and pale."
Sam smiled again, "Yes, I am okay now, thanks to my big brother Dean here."
Dean smiled at her and cockily said, "Well, we meet again Lucy."
Sam was kind of astonished hearing that from Dean and looked at him. He was just going to ask him, when Jason and the others of the crew came to him and cheered with enjoyment for having Sam once again among them.
"What the hell is going on?" A rough, terribly annoyed voice filtered in the whole cheery room and suddenly everyone went silent. The owner 'Butch' was standing at the threshold of his office room and scanned the whole situation in a very unsympathetic manner.
Dean knew that Butch hadn't seen him because he was hidden behind the crew. An evil smile ghosted on his face and suddenly he walked out from behind them and stood in front of the pudgy man with his best mischievous smile on his face.
Butch's eyes widened as he saw Dean. Utter fear was showing all over his face like he had seen some kind of ghost or something. He stumbled backward… "Owww…www…mmm…mmy…gggg…not…again…" his face turned a superior shade of white and he just threw himself inside his room and locked the door with an ear deafening thud.
Sam was clearly dumbfounded to see the whole drama that happened so quickly in front of him. He couldn't understand why Dean told Butch 'howdy' and why Butch freaked like that. He also noticed that the others were laughing their lungs out at seeing Butch's reaction. Astounded, he tried to ask Dean but stopped, "Long story. Tell you later." Dean smirked and peaked his eyebrows in amusement to see Sam's confused state.
Dean was once again driving his car in a happy mood, because of having Sam ride shotgun beside him. But this time Sam was soundly asleep. Head leaned on the half closed window, the strong wind blowing over him, scattering his hair all over his face. The excitement at Butch's diner had really exhausted poor boy. Dean smiled and inhaled sharply, as the mind blowing aroma of food came from the back seat. There were lots of food packets on the backseat, which were heartfelt gifts given by Lucy, Jason and the other friends from the diner. Yes, Dean was beyond happy; the delicious aroma of food was making him seriously drool. He once thought to sneak one of the pieces of pizza or anything, but controlled his urge somehow with the thought that first he had to get to the house and make sure that Sam was doing alright and let him rest. He shook his head and pressed the gas pedal down tightly.
Dean slowed the car down as a bar came to his view. No, he was in no mood of drinking this early; but he remembered that a lady by the name of 'Sadie' worked there. Dean killed the engine and absently looked at the sleeping face of Sam. Sadie was the first person who showed him that he needed to get back to his brother, '…as long as you're around your brother Dean…' Dean still couldn't understand how she knew so much about their family, about him, about Sammy? But she helped a lot, when he seriously needed it. He owed her his gratitude. Dean swept a hand over Sam's long bangs and sighed. Getting his determination together, Dean got out from the car and made sure that both doors were locked and Sam was safe inside it.
Dean entered into the almost empty bar and scanned the whole interior, but didn't find who he was looking for. He went to the counter area where a young around the age of Sam was rearranging the beer bottles. Dean cleared his throat a little, "Ahh, excuse me."
The man turned to him and smiled, "Yes, what can I do for you?"
"Ah, I am looking for someone. Can you call Sadie? Tell, Dean is waiting for her." Dean informed.
"Sadie, Sadie…" The man seemed to be thinking hard, "…actually I'm new here and I don't know everyone." The man smiled sheepishly.
"Well, she is the owner of this bar if I'm not mistaken."
"Oh oh, I understand…" The young man beamed, "…wait a second, Sally…" he barked, "…hey Sally, someone is looking for you."
Dean frowned as he hollered for Sally but he waited anyway.
A young girl around his age came to him. Well, she wasn't Sadie but looked kind of like her. She asked politely, "Yes, how can I help you."
"Umm, I was looking for Sadie, can you just call her?"
Sally stared at him for a couple of seconds like she was watching a ghost or something. She blinked in confusion and asked, "What?"
Now Dean was annoyed, 'What the hell? Why she is staring at me like I'm some kinda' nutjob.' Dean thought wryly and asked, "I said, can you call Sadie for me?"
"Are you kidding? She can't come here." The girl looked somewhat sad. "I assume you don't know about her. My mom, she died one year ago." The girl lowered her head to hide her sorrow.
Dean mouth was crestfallen as the shocking news entered into his brain. What the hell was happening? He gulped a couple of time. His palms were sweating. He swallowed, "How…how could…I just met her not more than seven or eight days ago? She…she…"
"You are insane." The girl looked p*ssed now, "How could she meet with you when she died a year ago? I think you mistook someone for her. Okay, I gotta go now." The girl stomped into the other corner of the bar.
Dean staggered out of the bar in blatant astonishment. He still couldn't believe that the woman he met only a week ago had not existed for a whole year! Then who…why did her spirit talk to him? Why did she make him think about Sam? He didn't even know her. He rubbed his face and looked to where the impala were parked. He could still see Sam's head resting against the window, obviously still sleeping. 'Why is she worried about Sammy? Why her spirit…'
Suddenly a chilly wind from nowhere blew over his body and Dean shivered. It was like someone touched his face with a loving hand and it was so familiar. Dean could smell her scent, she was still there. She was there every time they needed her…
"Mom." Dean whispered and looked at the clear sky.
'Dean'…Dean heard a whisper from nowhere and smiled, "It was you mom. You were talking to me and tried to make me do right! But I was so stupid. I could not recognize you mom and I let Sammy…"
'Shh…take care Dean and look out for Sammy…' The windy whisper came again and then it was gone.
Dean wiped away the single tear forming in his eye and suddenly felt that he needed to get close to his brother. He ran to the impala and opened his driver side door with a light squeak. Sam stirred a little and rolled his head towards Dean but didn't wake up. He mumbled something incoherently but quickly faded back into deep slumber as Dean carded his hand over his hair and soothed. Dean smiled and quietly said, "I will take care of him mom, don't worry. I will never let him out of my sight again. I love you mom and I promise you I will look after him until I die." Dean started the engine and sped up to their destination. He had his beloved car with him; he had his mother's shadow on him...and at last he had his greatest prize 'His Sammy' back with him. He was content and it was a brand new start for the Winchester brother's…again.
*****************************************~**~ THE END ~**~*******************************************
" Happy Ending, now I just wanna say- awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww…"