Title: Fire on the Mountain (Run, Boys, Run)
Characters: John, Sammy, Dean
Category: Gen, Angst, H/C, Weechester (very wee)
Warning: (skip) Schmoooooop.
Summary: Little Sammy was poking him. Again.
Word Count: 873
Disclaimer: This is my Father's world, but it's Kripke's playground.
Author's Note: For the spnwriterlounge Writers Olympics. Title from a bluegrass tune (or "The Devil Went Down to Georgia"), though the Grateful Dead song is cool, too.
Fire on the Mountain (Run, Boys, Run)
"Daddy, Daddy! Lemme sweep wif you. Daddy!"
Little fingers were pulling on John's blanket, letting in the cold air, poking at as much of his forearm as they could reach, and a loud stage-whisper echoed off the nearly bare walls. John grunted awake and stared into the darkness. His two-year-old was poking him. Again.
"Daddy, tum on. Lemme in."
John turned over on his side and lifted a corner of the blanket to let the toddler into bed with him. He tried not to sigh. His son was just a baby, and there was no way he could know that John had been up far too late reading old books, that his head hurt and his eyes ached and his heart was sore, and being woken up in the small hours to fetch his child a glass of water, or tell him a story, or whatever he wanted, was the last thing Daddy needed right now.
At least Sammy wasn't asking for reassurances that there were no monsters in the closet or under the bed. John didn't know what he would say when that came up.
"What 's it, Sammy?" he asked, stifling a yawn. The tiny boy crawled in next to him, snuggling up against his chest with all of the confidence and unquestioning trust that a very young, innocent thing could hold. "You really need to sleep in your own bed. We talked about this. Being a big boy is fun, remember?"
Letting Daddy have his own bed, yeah, that was going to be real fun. John had really been looking forward to having his own bed again.
Sammy scowled into his neck, little foot inadvertently kicking John in the kidney as he squirmed. "I twied to, Daddy. Dean was kicking me again."
"Dean? Kicking you?" John blinked, suddenly wide awake. He couldn't imagine Dean kicking his little brother. He'd been nothing but extraordinary with the baby since they first started this nomadic life. "Kicking you again?"
"Yeah, he been kicking me ev'y night since you lef' us wif Pastor Jim. And he's all hot and poky and I can't sweep wif him, Daddy, it's too hard."
Sammy's voice rose in a whine at the end, and John absently patted his head and started to slide out of bed. "You stay here, okay? I need to check on Dean."
Sammy let him go, already busy snuggling into the pillows. "Tum back soon."
John slid across the floor in his stocking feet, moving quietly to the motel room's other queen bed. He found Dean scrunched up in the middle in a swelter of blankets, sweat glistening on his forehead in the dim yellow light striping in from the parking lot outside. Before John could get to him, the kid was shaking, tossing his head, kicking out as if trying to run. Or fight.
"No," he whimpered. "No, no, please, stay 'way from the fire..."
Something gave way in John's chest, shattered, broken, gone for good. Dean was dreaming about Mary. John had always hoped that the boy didn't see anything that night, didn't see...
John almost stumbled over his feet in his haste to get over there, sat on the edge of the bed and laid a hand on his boy's chest, all but spanning it just from fingertip to wrist. So small, so fragile. "Dean, wake up. Wake up, it's a dream."
Dean lurched upward with a tiny cry, almost stifled, almost lost. Sharp fingernails bit into John's arm, and the boy's eyes were wide and panicked. "Daddy? Daddy, is that you?"
John engulfed his shoulder in one palm. "I'm here."
"Daddy." Dean sobbed and burrowed into him. "Don't let it get you, Daddy. Don't let it get you."
What was this? John folded him up, mystified. "I won't, kiddo. I won't let it get me."
"Don't let it get you like it got Mommy. Don't let it burn you up."
John held him tighter, pressed his face into damp, straw-colored hair, felt the pricking in his own eyes. "I won't. I swear. Nothing's gonna get me. Not ever, Dean, you hear me? Not ever. It's gonna be okay. I'm not gonna leave you."
Dean held him and John held him back until he felt the little arms loosen fractionally, the child sagging against him in exhaustion. Every night, Sammy had said. John had left them at Jim Murphy's for a few days almost three weeks ago while he went on a trip with an experienced hunter, trying this monster-killing job on for size. That long? He should have noticed.
"Daddy," Sammy called from the other bed, lonely in the dark. "Are you tumming back?"
John pulled in a breath through his nose and turned his head, resting his cheek against his little boy's head. "Why don't you come back over here? I'll sleep between you two so Dean can't kick you anymore."
"Otay," Sammy replied easily, and John heard the little scuffles as he got down and crossed over.
He shifted Dean over, let the toddler in. Both boys curled against him, Sammy warm and sleepy and relaxed, Dean still clinging to his neck. John wrapped an arm around each and settled in.
Having your own bed was overrated, anyway.