I wrote this a while back, but am just getting around to posting it. A few hardy souls asked for a follow-up to "The Power of Suggestion," so here ya go. Hope you enjoy! You don't have to have read that story to understand this one.

I also finally posted my version of the hypothermic!Dean, protective, caring!Sam challenge that went out for my birthday. It's called "Frozen in Memory." I hope you'll check it out.

words: scratch, feel, green
word count: 300

The Power of Duct Tape

Dean watched his brother sleep. He'd been pushing Sammy to rest since they'd gotten back from the fair and their disturbing encounter there, and Sam had finally succumbed. Good thing, too—poor kid was miserable, which made Dean feel miserable. Friggin' gypsies.

He scowled at the red welts that littered his little brother's arms. No matter how vigilant he was, Sammy always managed to sneak and scratch—just like he had as a kid with chicken pox. Well, Dean knew how to fix that. He smirked, anticipating Sam's reaction, but hey—sometimes you had to be cruel to be kind. Humming, he gathered supplies, made sure Sam was still out, and got started.

Dean finally finished and observed his handiwork, satisfied. That oughta do it. Glancing at his watch, he determined there was time for a shower. He'd know if the kid woke up.

Sure enough, the earth-shattering shriek came just as he was getting dressed. "DEAN!!"

Knowing his little brother well enough to recognize annoyance, rather than pain or fear, he nonchalantly poked his head out of the partially-opened door, exuding innocence.

Sam held up his hands, encased in sasquatch-sized white athletic socks, bound to his wrists with layer upon layer of duct tape. He made quite a picture—hair sticking straight up in spots, the cotton-candy-pink elephant from the fair still tucked in the crook of one elbow where Dean had placed it while he slept, arms speckled with the antibiotic cream Dean had carefully smeared onto each scratch—and Dean had to bite back a chuckle. Sam's face flushed with indignation as he shook his besocked hands. "What is this?!" he squawked.

"Sorry, kiddo." Dean shrugged pragmatically, his green eyes a mix of sympathy, concern, affection…and just a hint of diabolical glee. "Told ya not to scratch."