Six Months Later
"Sam, if you don't get your ass in here right now, you're gonna be riding on the car not in it." The upper half of Dean's body hung out the driver's side window.
"One more spot to wipe down." Sam rubbed the cloth in a small circle, blew a hot breath against it, and repeated the action with the cloth.
"Yeah, yeah, keep your pants on." He darted around to the passenger side and hopped inside the car. "You ever going to let me drive?"
"Why not? This was my idea."
"No. You can't drive a stick." Dean grinned and started the engine. "Ahh…listen to that purr." He patted the dash. "She's nearly seventy-five years old."
"I'm going to be ninety before we go anywhere in her…it."
"Ha! You said her."
Sam grinned. "Okay. Her. Are we going to test drive this thing or not?" He twisted to look at Dean. "And why is it you can help me learn to use some freaky demon power, but you won't teach me to drive a stick shift?"
"Doesn't matter, Sammy, you're not driving this car. It needs an experienced person at the helm."
"Ha! You said it!"
"I didn't mean—" Dean grumbled and pulled the 1937 Chevy Master onto the dirt road leading from Singer's Auto and headed to the main road. "Shut your trap and open the gate."
Sam grinned when the gate to the junk yard swung open just before the car barreled into it. They drove through and onto the road. There was hardly any other traffic; it was as if they had this bit of the world to themselves. Dean pressed against the gas, the engine rumbled and Sam felt how the car shifted and opened up as Dean increased their speed.
Offering him a completely fake annoyed look, Dean snickered, "Cutting it a bit close, weren't ya?"
"Element of surprise."
Dean glanced at him then back to the road. "More like showing off."
"As if you wouldn't," Sam muttered and ducked away from the punch aimed at his shoulder.
Shrugging, Sam resettled in the deep, leather seat, one arm resting on the opened window. The early evening air was warm, but not uncomfortably so. The breeze from the moving car ruffled his bangs and wafted over his face.
Dean had died. Dean had come back. Sam still didn't know what it was he'd done, or how he'd brought Dean out of Hell and back to the living but he had his brother and he was safe. The wraiths hadn't taken Dean's soul and they easily could have, leading Sam to believe Dean's soul was safe. That was all that really mattered.
Now there was a way to fight these demons with a clearer understanding of how they both needed each other to use this power, of what to do with it. Sam's head was definitely screwed on better these days. Dean had finally stopped looking at him as if he'd melt or break and shatter into a million small pieces. The days of Dean worrying over Sam's sanity were behind them and Sam hoped to keep it that way. Maybe he'd never be able to do the things the Trickster had manipulated him to do, but at least with his brother, Sam's control and his mind were far more stable.
"It's cool, huh?" Dean tapped Sam's leg. "Being in this car."
"It is," Sam agreed. He stretched his arms over the seat and let his fingertips brush Dean's shoulder.
"You really want to learn to drive her?"
"Yes." Sam bolted up straight. He flushed and looked away, embarrassed by how ridiculously excited he was at the prospect of driving an old—ancient—car. "Isn't showing your kid brother the ropes what you're supposed to do?"
Dean smiled softly and pulled to the side of the road. "Burn out the clutch, and you put a new one in." He parked the car, got out, and Sam slid to the driver's seat. Dean settled in the passenger seat. "Okay…that's the clutch, that's the brake and there's the gas." Dean pointed to each as he spoke. "This thing here," Dean tapped the gear shift, "is the gear shift."
"Dean, even I know that."
"You want to do this or not?"
Sam shut his mouth then made a zipping up and throwing away the key motion. Dean nodded, turning serious. When it came to cars and hunting, the man was all business.
"Push in the clutch gently. Now start her up and move the stick here, to first gear. Then ease your foot slowly off the clutch and press down on the gas at the same time."
Sam did as his brother instructed. The Chevy Master shuddered and jumped forward.
"Slow it down, Sammy. Just ease up on the clutch and down on the gas."
One thing Sam had always known, even as a small child, was that Dean was an excellent teacher. Sam was always his most rapt student. It was a quality Sam now cherished deeply. He felt blessed to have been able to experience that side of Dean's personality first hand again and again. After a few false starts, he was easing the car onto the road and up to speed.
Dean's smile was wide and brilliant, "There you go, you've got it." He patted Sam's knee a few times, leaned back against the seat looking quite pleased and content with himself.
Sam's grip on the steering wheel eased up as he got more comfortable with the gears and clutch and the difference between this and a car with an automatic transmission. They had a nice night, a full tank of gas, and nowhere in particular to drive. Tomorrow they'd be hunters again, and this car would be tucked in a heated garage under a tarp behind Bobby's house waiting for another warm summer night when they had time to enjoy the ride.
Tonight they had nothing but open road. Tomorrow they'd be off to save the world…again.