One Snowy Christmas

Disclaimer: I do not own anything recognizable in this story, nor am I making a profit.

Author's Note: This story is dedicated to Irishgirl9 who asked for an expanded story on the Christmas memory scene from Fighting to Breathe.

After tucking his boys into bed for the night, John breathed a sigh of relief knowing that the hunt was over and he had finally made it back to his boys. It had taken him damn near two weeks to learn the snow beast's habits and then another forty eight hours out in the freezing cold and falling snow to finally kill the son of a bitch before it could maul another innocent skier. Luckily for him, Bobby had known the friend of a friend who allowed him to use an old cabin of his so the boys would have a safe place to stay while he finished the hunt. Sammy was only six and still innocent about the supernatural world and he wanted it to stay that way as long as possible.

Sitting on the edge of the bed, John bent down and kissed his youngest on the forehead. "Night Sammy, sweet dreams." He whispered as he pulled the blankets up over the little boy and tucked them in around him.

"Daddy, will you tell me a story?" Sammy asked not wanting to be in the room by himself while Dean was taking a bath. The room was really dark at night and he was afraid that of the sounds he kept hearing at night. Dean had told him it was just the forest animals, but he was still frightened

"I'm sorry, but I don't really know any stories Tiger." John said with a sad smile as he ruffled Sammy's curly brown locks. Dean had always been the one to regale Sammy with made up stories and he honestly wished he could remember one of them right now.

"Please Daddy, I don't…" Sammy's voiced trailed off as a strong wind blew outside and the branch of the tree made a loud screeching noise as it scraped the window causing Sammy to visibly shudder.

Noticing Sammy's discomfort right away, things suddenly became clear to John. "How about I make a deal with you kiddo. I'll crawl into bed with you until Dean gets out of the bath and he can tell you a story instead. Will that be okay?"

Nodding his head, Sammy scooted over in the bed to make room for his dad. Once John had lifted the covers and climbed in beside him, Sammy snuggled up to his broad chest. "Thanks Daddy." He mumbled as he fisted the USMC olive green t-shirt his father was wearing and closed his dewy eyes."

Sighing in contentment, John wrapped an arm protectively around his baby boy. "You're welcome kiddo." He whispered allowing himself to relax fully for the first time since the hunt had ended. His boys were safe and they were together again and nothing else mattered. Closing his eyes, he decided to take a light nap until Dean finished his bath and entered the room.

Climbing out of the bath, Dean quickly dried himself off and then pulled on his flannel pajamas. His dad had bought both him and Sammy a pair knowing that it would be cold in the mountains of Montana at this time of year. Luckily, they had lots of firewood stacked on the porch out back to keep the cabin warm, but it could get really cold at night since their dad didn't want to chance having a fire going through the night, especially if he weren't there so the flannel pajamas were a godsend.

Walking out of the bathroom, Dean made his way to the bedroom that he and Sammy shared knowing that his baby brother wouldn't be able to sleep without him there. Sammy had had a few nightmares over the past couple of nights and he didn't want to leave him along for too long. Silently slipping into the room, his eyes grew huge at noticing his dad in the bed with Sammy and that he was snoring.

Smiling at the sight before his eyes, Dean silently trod over to the bed and then straightened the blankets over both his father and baby brother before making his way out of the room to check the wards and sigils his dad had placed before going to bed himself. Once he had made sure the salt lines were intact and that the deadbolts on the doors were secure, he made his way back to his dad's room since his and Sam's bed was too small for the three of them to fit together on it.

Leaving the doors open between the two rooms just in case his dad woke up, Dean turned out the lights and then climbed into bed and snuggled under the comforter, grateful for the warmth it provided. "Night Sammy and Dad." He whispered as he glanced across the hallway before closing his eyes and fading off to sleep, knowing that Sammy would be safely protected by his father tonight.

Early the next morning, John slowly became aware of a small form clutching to him and opened his eyes in surprise to find Sammy firmly snuggled against him, his hands clutching the shirt covering his chest. Ruffling his hair lightly so as not to wake him up, he suddenly realized his oldest was not in the bed. "Oh shit, Dean?" John gasped, realizing that he had fallen asleep while his oldest was in the shower the night before. How could he have slept so soundly that he failed to make sure Dean was tucked safely in bed and that the wards were in place. Some dad he was.

Easing himself out of the bed so he didn't wake Sammy, John started towards the door in haste to find Dean. He would never forgive himself if something happened to his eldest while he slept soundly through it. Reaching the door, he immediately relaxed as he looked through the door into his own room and saw his son sleeping soundly on his bed. Breathing a huge sigh of relief, he smiled at the way Dean looked so innocent in sleep. Dean always had his guard up when awake giving him a sharp edge to his features, but laying there in bed, he could that his oldest child was still just a kid. He knew Dean would be pissed if he knew he thought that, but it brought him a little peace knowing Dean still retained a small bit of innocence.

Deciding to let the boys sleep just a little while longer, John checked the wards to find them all secure and then silently made his way into the kitchen and put on a pot of fresh coffee to brew, thankful the cabin came with a generator that allowed them to have the basic luxuries of running water and electricity. Of course, he had to get a fire started in the fireplace since the cabin wasn't equipped with a heating system and it was a little too cold for his liking. Once he had a roaring fire going and placed the protective screen in front of it, he could feel the warmth starting to build in the cabin. He would get his boys up as soon as he had his first cup of coffee and have them start packing while he made breakfast. He wanted to be out of there by noon if possible.

Walking back to the kitchen and pouring himself a cup of the caffeinated beverage, he sat down at the table and stretched his legs out. Taking a sip of the coffee, he glanced up to see Dean walking towards him, already dressed. "Hey Ace, I thought you were still sleeping." He said with a smile as he watched Dean flop down into a chair on the opposite side of the table.

"The smell of the coffee woke me, can I have some?" Dean queried knowing that his dad didn't allow him to drink it too often.

"Only a half a cup this time sport. I don't want you hyped up on caffeine when we leave." John said as he got up from the table to pour Dean a cup. "Why don't you go wake Sammy and I'll make some scrambled eggs for breakfast also so we can get out of here sometime this morning. And while you're at it, make sure you pack your duffles."

"Yes Sir." Dean replied as he tugged the fingers of his right hand through his hair before walking away to do as told.

Walking into the bedroom, he packed his duffle bag and then sat on the edge of the bed to wake his brother up. "Sammy, time to wake up kiddo, Dad is making us breakfast." He said as he gently shook his younger brother by the shoulder. When he got no reaction from that, he tried again. "Come on Tiger, you don't want to miss breakfast do ya?"

"Lemme alone Dean." Sam grumbled as he rolled over onto his other side. He wasn't ready to wake up yet.

"Oh no you don't squirt." Dean said as he rolled Sam back over onto his back and began to tickle him.

"De stop." Sam breathed out through giggles as he tried to get away from those ticklish fingers of Dean.

"No way munchkin, not until you say you're getting up." Dean retorted as he went for the soles of Sammy's feet.

"Okay, okay, I give up." Sam laughed as he pushed himself into a sitting position.

Reaching into Sam's duffle, Dean pulled out some warm clothing for his brother to wear. "Put these on kiddo." He said as he tossed the clothing on the bed before gathering up the rest of Sam's things to place in his duffle.

"Kay De." Sam replied as he began to pull off his pajama top while Dean packed his things. He finished dressing quickly and then tossed Dean the pajamas he had worn to bed so they could be packed also. Once everything was packed, he followed his brother out into the kitchen. Seeing a plate of scrambled eggs set out for him, he asked, "Daddy, can I have some ketchup for my eggs please?"

"Sorry squirt, but there isn't any." John replied knowing how much Sam liked the condiment over his eggs.

"There's a little bit of syrup left if you want Sammy." Dean informed his baby brother upon seeing the pout on Sammy's face.

Nodding his head, Sammy watched as Dean got the bottle and poured the last of the syrup over his eggs. "Thanks De." He said gratefully as he forked a large bite into his mouth.

"You boys eat up. I'm going to go get our things and put them in the Impala so we can get an early start." John told his boys as he stood up and pushed away from the table. Grabbing his jacket from the stand on his way to the door, he put it on and opened the door to get the surprise of his life.

"Son of a bitch." He gasped upon seeing the winter wonderland that met his eyes. At least two feet of fresh snow had fallen overnight, maybe more. There was no way they were getting out of there today.

"What is it, what's wrong Dad?" Dean questioned as he stood up and walked over to see what had his father so upset. "Wow!" He stated strongly as he saw the snow covered landscape.

"Wow is right, there's no way we can leave today with all that snow." John groaned knowing they would be stuck for another day or two at least until the weather warmed up and some of the snow melted.

"But Dad, what about…ya know?" Dean asked, hoping his dad would understand the unasked question. It was the day before Christmas and with Sammy still believing in Santa Claus, he didn't want him to wake up disappointed.

"Don't worry Dean, I've got it covered." John answered with a wink to let his son know that his message was understood and that everything would be just fine. "I've already got his things and they're in the trunk of the car. And don't you go snooping either." John chided not wanting Dean to see that there were some presents with his name on them also.

"Dad, I'm not a little kid." Dean said as he rolled his eyes.

"I guess you don't want to go out and have a snowball fight then with your old man." John retorted with a devilish gleam in his eyes. If they couldn't leave, they might as well have some fun to pass the time away.

"What? You actually mean it?" Dean questioned incredulously wondering if she would whisper Christo.

"Sure, why not. It's been a long time since we've had some fun as a family. You can help Sammy get bundled up into his long johns and snow suit and we'll go have ourselves some fun."

"Christo." Dean whispered just to make sure his dad wasn't possessed.

"Very funny Dean." John stated with a wry grin. Maybe he had been to stern with his kids lately if Dean thought he was possessed just because he wanted to have a little fun. "Now go help your brother get dressed." John encouraged as he walked to his own room. He was looking forward to having some good old fashioned fun with his boys.

Twenty minutes later found all three Winchesters bundled up to protect them from the cold as they made their way outside. Walking down the steps and out into the yard, John couldn't help but laugh as Sammy tried to make his way through the deep snow. "You need some help there Tiger?" John questioned as he watched Sam lift his leg high so he could move.

"No, I got it Daddy." Sam said with a smile as he trudged towards his father. "What are we going to do?"

"What do you want to do kiddo?" John asked as he knelt down in front of his youngest.

"Can we make a snowman?" Sammy questioned with a smile as his eyes twinkled with merriment.

"Sure munchkin, let me show you how to get started." John answered as he formed a small snowball in his fist. Laying it onto the snow, he showed Sammy how to roll the ball along so that it could grow in size. Letting his baby boy take over with what he had started, he watched as Sammy rolled the snowball along. "You're doing great Sammy." He touted as he glanced over to see Dean with a sizeable snowball of his own.

"Hey Ace, we'll use that one for the bottom of the snowman." John called out as he watched Dean pat it down on top. Forming a ball of his own, he quickly rolled it into a smaller size for the middle part while Sammy continued with his own. Placing his snowball on top of Dean's, he signaled for Sammy to roll his over to him. "That's just the perfect size for the snowman's head." John told his youngest as he used his gloved hand to pat the small boy on the head. Picking up the small sized snowball, he placed it into position.

"Hmmm, something's missing." He said as he scratched at his chin, giving off the impression that he wasn't sure what.

"The snowman doesn't have any eyes." Sammy stated suddenly figuring out what was missing.

"By golly, I think you're right." John said with glee as he picked his youngest up and spun him around. "Wonder what we could use for his eyes?"

"We could use some marbles." Sammy suggested as he tried to think of something that would work.

"Or we could use those colorful rocks that were by the fireplace." Dean said knowing that the marbles would be too small.

"That's a good idea Dean, why don't you go get them, while me and Sammy get a carrot for the nose." John said as he held Sammy in his arms.

Once they returned outside with the desired objects, John allowed his boys to place them and then they all stood back to admire their creation. "I think that's probably just about the best looking snowman I've ever seen."

"Hey Dad?"

"Yeah Dean?" John questioned as he turned to face his oldest only to find himself hit in the chest with a snowball.

"Gotcha." Dean laughed as he watched the surprised look on his dad's face.

"You've asked for it now Sport." John said as he picked up some snow and packed it into a nice round ball before giving it a fling.

"Missed me." Dean shouted with a laugh as he launched another ball of his own, this time going wide.

"My turn." Sammy yelled as he threw his own snowball and hit his dad in the stomach.

"You're gonna pay for that Sammy." John grinned as he picked up some snow and formed another snowball. Throwing it, he made sure it went over his youngest son's head so that it wouldn't hurt him.

"You missed me Daddy." Sam stated proudly as he made a funny face at his Dad.

"So I did, I'll get you the next time Tiger." John said knowing dang well he would purposely miss him every time. He wasn't about to chance Sammy getting too cold from having snow get inside his snowsuit.

The snowball fight went on for another good thirty minutes with John and Dean both taking hits, but Sammy managing to escape every time. By the time that they had finished, John and Dean were both panting breathlessly and Sammy's cheeks had turned a rosy red in color. "I think it's time to go back inside." John said noticing that Sammy was starting to become chilled also.

"Aw Daddy, do we ha-have t-too?" Sammy questioned through chattering teeth.

"Yes Tiger, you're already freezing as it is. I'm not going to chance both of you getting sick on me." John answered as he grabbed Sammy's gloved hand and started leading him towards the door.

Later that evening as they sat in front of the fireplace reveling in the warmth it provided, Sammy climbed up into his dad's lap as he sat in the reclining chair. He was feeling a little antsy and he really needed some comfort from his father since Dean was in the kitchen washing up the dinner dishes.

"Sammy, is something wrong kiddo?" John asked as Sammy snuggled into his chest and began chewing on his fingernails.

"Daddy, will Santa be able to find us tonight?" Sam asked as tears began to fill his eyes.

"Sure he will Tiger, why would you think he wouldn't?" John queried as he brushed away the tears beginning to fall down Sammy's cheeks.

"Cause we're stuck in the mountains and not at home where I told Santa we lived in my letter." Sam answered sadly.

Aw Sammy, you don't have to worry about that because Santa has a magical snowball squirt. All he has to do is shine it with his magic mittens until it is crystal clear and look into it while saying your name. When he does that, the magical snowball will show him exactly where you are." John stated as he wrapped his arms around his youngest and gave him a hug.

"You promise?" Sam asked with a quivering voice.

"Yeah baby, I promise." John said as he held his son close and looked at the sorry excuse for a Christmas tree that he had cut down and brought into the cabin hours earlier. They had decorated it with decorations that Sam had drawn with his crayons and cut out to make it look good.

"And speaking of Santa, you better get to bed so that he can come." John encouraged as he kissed Sammy on top of his head and then sent him on his way.

"Kay Daddy." Sam shouted as he ran to his room to change into his pajamas. He didn't want Santa to arrive and find him awake and not leave him any presents. Quickly brushing his teeth, he ran to the kitchen to tell Dean he needed to hurry or Santa couldn't come. Once Dean had promised he'd be finished shortly, Sam ran back into his room and climbed into bed and waited for his dad to tuck him in.

Approximately thirty minutes later, John had both boys tucked into bed and was waiting for his children to fall asleep so he could go out to the Impala and bring their presents in. Sitting at the table with a cup of java, he could hear his boys whispering and knew that they were excited about the coming morning. He had to smile as he heard Sammy trying to whisper but not succeeding.

"Hey Dean, do you think Santa will bring me the Optimus Prime that I asked for?" Sammy queried of his big brother. He and Dean had been watching the Transformers cartoon on television and he really wanted the transforming robot more than any other toy in the world.

"I don't know Sammy. You would have had to been pretty good all year long to get a nice toy like that." Dean answered. He didn't know if his dad had bought the toy or not, so he couldn't guarantee Sammy that he would get it.

"I've been pretty good most of the time De, but I was bad a few times. Do you think Santa will be mad at me?"

"I think he'll be mad if you don't get to sleep so he can come." Dean retorted wanting to end the conversation before Sammy became upset. "Just go to sleep and hopefully Santa will bring you what you want, but if he doesn't, then I'll get you one for your birthday."

"Okay De. I love you." Sam said as reached over and gave his brother a quick hug before snuggling next to him to go to sleep.

"Love you too Sammy." Dean replied as he pulled Sammy in close. He hoped with all his heart that Sammy had the Optimus Prime waiting on him in the morning.

Checking in on his boys approximately forty five minutes later, John found them both sleeping soundly with Sammy snoring ever so lightly. Tugging the blanket up over their shoulders, he tucked it in once again and then slipped quietly out of the room. It was time to get their presents and put them under the tree.

Early the next morning, John was awoken by the sound of an excited Sammy running into his room and bounding onto his bed. "Daddy, daddy, it's time to get up, Santa came." Sammy panted as he shook his dad by the shoulder. "Come on Daddy, it's time to open presents."

"Okay, okay, I'm up." John said with a yawn as he sat up and rubbed his hands through his disheveled hair. Throwing his legs off the bed, he stood up and pulled his jeans on over his boxers and then followed his youngest out of the room.

"Sorry Dad, I tried to get him to wait, but Sammy was too excited." Dean said as he handed his dad a cup of coffee from the pot he had just made.

"S'okay Ace." John grinned as he accepted the cup gratefully and took a few sips before sitting it on the coffee table. "Guess you boys are ready for me to start passing out those presents huh?" John queried with a gleam in his eyes. Pulling out the first box that was wrapped in blue paper, he said, "This one's for you Sammy." Handing the box over to his youngest, he smiled as Sammy started ripping it open.

"Cool, look what I got Dean." Sam said as he held up a small matchbox car that looked like the Impala.

"That's awesome Sammy." Dean said as he watched his brother start to push it around on the floor. It was a nice toy, but it wasn't the one his brother really wanted and he hoped Sam wouldn't be disappointed.

"Here Dean, this one is for you." John said as he held out a slender box wrapped in silver paper.

Taking the box into his hands, Dean pulled off the paper and then opened the lid. "Wow Dad, this is fantastic, thanks." He said as he pulled out the switchblade with his initials etched into the hilt. He had been wanting his own knife for a while now.

"Your welcome kiddo, I hoped you would like it." John stated as he watched Dean carefully replace the knife into it's box knowing the significance of it. Dean was slowly becoming involved in the hunt, and he wanted his son to have a knife of his own and this was the first step.

Pulling out two more boxes, he handed one to each of his boys knowing that the boxes held new pants and shirts for each of them since the ones they already had were looking worn and had holes in them. He watched as Sammy started trying them on while Dean folded his and lay them on the side of the couch.

"Oh look, here's one more box." John said as he pulled the last box from under the tree. "It has your name on it Sammy."

Taking the box into hand, Sammy chewed on his bottom lip wondering what it could be. Did Santa bring him the toy he wanted most. Tearing into the paper, his eyes became huge as he saw the red, white and blue toy looking back at him. "It's him, it's Optimus Prime." Sammy shouted as he hugged the transforming toy to his chest. "Santa really brought him De, he really did."

"Santa's the best isn't he Sammy?" Dean said with tears misting his eyes as he looked at his Dad with an appreciative smile and nod.

"He sure is." Sam replied as he tore open the box and pulled out the beloved toy, He was surprised the box contained another Transformer figure also. "Look De, it's Bumble Bee, you can have him." Sammy said as he handed the toy over.

"Thanks Sammy." Dean stated as he took the offered too and began to play with his baby brother thinking that this was the best Christmas ever.

THE END. Merry Christmas to all who celebrate. I hope you enjoyed the story. Thanks for taking the time to read.