A/N: So we've come to the end of another fic. Thanks to everyone who stuck by me through this and thanks to CydneyLynn who I couldn't reply to. I hope you enjoy the last chapter and will leave me a review again.
Dean gasped awake, sitting up on the bed.
"What the hell?" He stared at the sheet bunched up in his lap, feeling the material's weight over his jeans and laying against the tips of his bare toes. He looked out the window to see the moon shining down and swiveled his head towards the bed his brother used, still shrouded in darkness. Sam was laying awkwardly on the bed, face turned nearly into the pillow. Dean's heart rate jumped when lights from a passing vehicle played over the second bed and shone crimson on Sam's chest, the patch of blood seeping down his sides.
Dean jumped from his own bed, nearly hitting the floor when the sheet tangled around him. He shook free and smacked the lamp, bathing the room in a muted yellow glow. He crossed the distance between the beds and reached for Sam, checking hastily for the pulse that he found beating sluggishly. Heat radiated from him like a furnace. Sam shuddered, his pale face glistening with droplets of sweat, as Dean ripped the bloody gash in his tee shirt wider to look at the wound.
"Sonuvabitch!" Dean ran to the bathroom and grabbed the two remaining clean towels, leaving one folded as he pressed it to the wound. "C'mon Sammy, talk to me kiddo."
"Dean." Dean whirled, a breeze and flutter making his green eyes sting.
"Damnit Cas, don't do that!"
The trench coated angel stepped forward, pushing between Dean and Sam. "Dean, we need to talk."
"Got my hands full here, Cas." Dean said. Dean's cell rang and he gave it a fleeting glance before returning his gaze to Sam.
"It is about Sam, Dean." Dean looked into the stoic face of the angel.
"What about Sammy?"
"He was awake, Dean."
"What? What do you mean he was awake?"
"He felt Lucifer's power flow through him. He was not possessed, he was used. Lucifer's will to destroy was fed through Sam, through the blood bond with him. He suffered as he saw the cities being leveled."
"But Sammy didn't do it!"
"To Sam, he did. You know your brother, Dean. You know he won't be able to forget what he was a part of. Lucifer fed him the images of his destruction. Sam watched the children lose their lives. Sam watched the mothers trying to keep their children out of harm's way and he watched them fail."
"So I'll help him through it!"
"It will not be that simple, Dean. Sam is broken. He will not be the brother you knew when he wakes." Cas said, sitting at the foot of the bed and looking at the young hunter lying there. Castiel's eyes seemed almost sad. He reached a hand out and held it over the towel briefly, before pulling the stained towel away, the bleeding stopped. The wound was a puckered pink scar, surrounded by smudges of drying blood.
"So help me get 'im back, Cas! Put him back together."
"I cannot. I am sorry Dean."
"The hell you can't! You, that demon bitch, and those other dicks, you did this to us! You played us and now you can fix him!" The angel stood and took a step away from the bed. Dean continued to rant, whirling on the angel. "So what? Now after all this…after fighting to save humanity…this hole" he spread his arms wide and gestured as if to encompass the planet, "I'm gonna lose the one…only good thing I got left? I fought and fought to put Lucifer down because the angels couldn't handle it! Sammy and I have been through TOO MUCH! We're all we got, the only good thing left. And you're tellin' me even after we fought our way through this… Did. Everything. You. Asked. Hell, everything God asked, that I'm gonna lose him?!"
"I am sorry, Dean." Dean grabbed the angel by the lapels of his trench coat and shoved him backwards, getting a startled grunt from him when his back impacted the wall. "If I lose Sam I swear… I swear to GOD that if I ever see you again…I will find a way to kill you. You get outta my face. " Dean was right up in the angel's face, tears in his eyes and mouth set in a hard but trembling line.
The angel stepped slowly away when Dean released him. "I am truly sorry Dean."
"You say that a helluva lot." Dean growled. He went back to Sam's side, perching on the edge of the bed. He smoothed Sam's hair back from his too warm forehead. "Go away, Cas." Dean said softly. The angel disappeared with a soft burst of air and the rustle of wings. Sam moaned and Dean brushed his hand over his forehead again, fingers sliding as red smudges appeared.
"What the hell?!" Dean cried, staring at his fingers. He watched Sam's face as blood droplets seeped from his pores. "No." He grabbed the ice bucket and went to the bathroom and grabbed a washcloth from the rack in the shower, filled the ice bucket with cool water and went back to his brother.
Castiel sat on the bench in the park, staring off into the distance, not seeing the children's jungle gyms and swings that even already were beginning to be used by carefree children. Dean's words played over and over in his head. The streetlight over head flashed on and blew out, sparks raining down. Anna's red hair stirred in the slight warm breeze that ghosted over him.
"What are you doing, Cas?"
"I do not know of what you speak."
"Yes. You do. Letting Sam die? After all they've gone through to save our… father's… creations, from Lucifer, from destruction. Even from the angels that wanted all of this. They sacrificed everything they had. Nearly lost each other, their bond. Everything. And now, you are going to stand by and watch as they do lose everything they have left? Come on. That's not you Cas. You know it's not. You know how to save Sam. You know that the only way Dean will survive this is to have his baby brother at his side. Are you really going to sit here and not flinch when you hear that gun go off in your heart?"
"Tell me what to do. Anna, please."
"You already know. Deep down you already know. In your place, after everything that has happened to them, you know you won't hesitate any longer." The wind rose and Castiel blinked, looking over to see the bench beside him empty.
"Come on, Sammy. Hang on kiddo." Dean brushed the cloth over Sam's brow, the seeping blood it gently scrubbed away being replaced immediately as it mixed in a pink film with the cool water droplets. Sam's chest heaved, struggling to rise and fall with another hard won breath that with each one Dean feared would be his last. Air whistled through Sam's dry lips and down his throat, returning on a much too shallow burst of heat from his lungs. His closed eyes worked behind their dark smudged lids, pain lines marring the face that looked much younger than his twenty six years.
"Don't you leave me. I can't do it. I can't letcha go. I did that too easy this last while. Not gonna happen again. I can't…" Dean put his hand beneath Sam's neck, the scorching heat of fever making his palm sweat. Dean's fingertips closed on the too fast beat of Sam's pulse and he felt his brother slipping away. His fingers slid over the film of blood that coated Sam's skin. Dean dipped the cloth back in the water and clenched it in his other fist, the liquid squeezing out of the cloth to dot the motel carpet with moisture and slosh back in the bowl. Dean wiped the cloth over Sam's face, lingering against his jaw as he felt a shudder work through his baby brother again. Sam struggled for his next breath, his lips quickly tingeing with blue. Dean dropped the cloth to the floor beside the bowl and lowered his forehead to rest on Sam's.
"Sammy, please!" The word became a silent litany as Dean's eyes scrunched closed and his walls crumbled, tears leaking from the tightly closed lids, to land on Sam's cheeks. Sam's cheek twitched at the warm saltwater that felt so cold to his heated skin. He rasped in another breath, his neck arching in Dean's hand as he fought.
The motel room door blew open, knob burying itself deep in the garish drywall. The trench coated angel strode into the room as Dean stood, pulling the gun from his waistband and leveling it on the angel, albeit uselessly. Castiel flicked a finger and the piece flew from Dean's hand, slamming into the wall on the other end of the room. Dean was forced back away from the bed as Castiel moved toward Sam.
"What the fuck are you doing?! Stay the hell away from him you sonuvabitch!" Dean grunted as his back hit the wall hard and he slid down, fighting to catch the wind pushed from his lungs. The angel loomed over Sam, looking down with determined features. His tan trench coat rustled as he lifted a hand to the base of his throat, an intense white glow appearing beneath the skin. He shoved his fingers through his skin and grunted, pulling back his hand with the white glow shining through his clenched fist. The glow faded to become contained in a filigreed pewter and glass vial. Castiel popped the pewter cork and dipped a finger in the blinding light. His hand shot out and gripped Sam's forehead, the glow on his finger mixing with the blood coating Sam's skin to spread quickly over his body. Sam's back arched and chest heaved as he screamed, the glow filling the room as Dean threw up his arms to shield his eyes. He ran blindly forward, shoving the angel away from his brother. He leaned in over Sam as the angel staggered away.
"Cover your eyes!" Castiel screamed. Dean threw his arms over his and Sam's heads and buried his face in Sam's shoulder.
Cas threw the capped vial to the floor, shattering it. The light swelled in the room and Dean covered Sam's head tighter. The window blew out and the light extinguished, leaving Dean panting. He raised his head, blinking the haloes of distorted light from his vision. His eyes finally cleared, the room dimming to normal. He looked down at Sam, seeing the blood gone from his flesh.
"Sammy?" Dean touched Sam's cheek, feeling it radiating normal levels of heat. Sam's head tipped into his hand and he sighed in his sleep. Dean breathed a sigh of relief and sat on the bed. He leaned against the headboard and pulled Sam against his side. He rested his leg against Sam's hip and leaned his head back, nesting his fingers in Sam's long hair.
"Y'know, the night dad gave ya to me, told me to take you outside, I felt like I was important, like I was a hero. That was the night I was given my job. I'm not sayin' I've been the best at that job. Know I let ya down… a lot." Dean swallowed and blinked, his breath catching. He shook his head and sighed. "I want ya to know, though, I'm back now. No matter what, I'm gonna do my job. I'm gonna look after you. I will find a way to help you."
Dean stirred as he felt something silky pull on his fingers. He lifted his head from it's reclined position and winced as his neck popped. He looked down into the watery blue green eyes of his baby brother.
"I'm s-sorry." Sam whispered, a tear breaking free to course down his pale cheek.
"Whoa, whoa." Dean cooed, brushing the moisture away, "What for?"
"I let him…use me." Sam's breathing hitched and his chest began to rise and fall faster. "I…hurt all those…people. Those kids… I watched an' I c-couldn't s-stop him. He…I saw mom. She was there, she…she was gonna help me get out an' I…I stepped back an' let him… Oh god, Ilet'imhurther." Sam said in a rush, tears spilling down his cheeks as he shook. Dean shifted on the bed and faced Sam, lifting him so that he sat up. Dean pulled him against his chest and wrapped his arms around his back, cupping his neck with a calloused hand.
"He used you. Hell, we were both played. You listen to me when I tell you…None. Of. This. Is. Your. Fault. Ya hear me? You did not do this." Dean said carefully, his mouth close to Sam's ear, and hand moving up to the back of Sam's head, holding him still as he tried to pull away.
"No. Stay put. I wanna know that you hear me."
"Y-" Sam gulped, falling silent and nodding against Dean's hand.
"Good. Chick flick be damned for once. We just stopped the freakin' apocalypse." Dean said, pulling Sam with him as he leaned back again. His phone rang and he reached for it, holding it to his ear. He quickly pulled it away as Bobby's angry voice rang over the line.
"Winchester, where the hell are you?!"
"Easy Bobby, easy. We're safe, we're okay. Cas pulled some strings and we're at a motel…somewhere."
"I should pump your ass fulla buckshot!! Next time you boys disappear, you freakin' CALL ME!"
"I had a… situation. Usin' the phone was kinda the last thing on my mind."
"A situation? A situation?!" Bobby huffed, Dean could picture him ripping his hat off and slamming it back on his head. He fell silent. "Sam? God, the boy okay?"
"Uh, look, give me the address and we'll be there as soon as we can."
"Don' worry about comin' here. Just get that boy to my place an' let him rest."
"I'm gonna give him a few days an'…"
"No Dean. Let's just go. I wanna just lay low for a while. Y'know?" Sam said, shoving up on his elbows. He swayed slightly and Dean caught him.
"Hey Bobby, I'll call you later, huh?" Dean said, sliding off the bed and lowering Sam back to the pillow.
"Sammy alright?" Bobby sounded worried.
"I got him."
"Take care 'a him."
"We'll see ya soon." Dean snapped his phone shut.
"I'm alright Dean. I just got dizzy for a minute." Sam said, his eyes closing as his brow furrowed in pain. His face smoothed out and his eyes remained closed.
"Yeah. You been through hell Sammy. We both have. We can chill for a few days before we hit the road."
"Dean, please. I just wanna go."
"Make ya a deal? You sleep until you wake up and then we'll hit the road."
Sam pulled in a breath and released it on a sigh.
The mist parted to reveal the white bench and Sam looked around, jumping when he felt a hand on his shoulder. He spun. "Mom?" Sam threw his arms around his mother. "I thought Lucifer…"
"No Baby. He didn't destroy me. He can't. He just sent me back."
"Heaven." Mary pulled back, out of his arms. White light swelled around her and blossomed into long, graceful wings. She spread them wide before allowing them to disappear.
"Sammy, I just wanted you to know that I'm fine. You go back to Dean, and you forgive yourself. It's over."
Sam's eyes opened and he found himself staring at the ceiling of the motel room. Light from the window reflected off the ceiling.
"Who'd ya think I was?" Dean said, stuffing clothing into his duffel bag.
"Remember when I said I saw mom?"
"Yeah. Ya said that Lucifer…"
"I saw her again. She's an…angel."
"Well, yeah. Means we got a chance t'see her again."
Sam pushed himself up and placed his feet on the carpet. Dean zipped his bag. "Ya ready to hit the road?"
"Yeah. You find out where we are?"
Dean chuckled. "Cas has a sense of humor. Grand Canyon Lodge."
"You wanna stop?"
"That's another trip for another time."
A/N: I'll be back in a couple weeks with another story.