A/N:- I know it took me forever to update but I won't bore you guys with boring stories of my hectic life. I thought I could never finish this story, but some of my friends really encouraged me (kicked my rear) and here it is. I doubt there's anyone left to read it and I'm sure everyone's forgotten about this story, but still felt I should post it. Again, I'm very sorry for the delay and won't be surprised if this chapter doesn't get any response.
A/N:- Thanks to my two awesome betas Vonnie and Jules, without them… Uggh… I don't wanna think about it.
"Johnny Winchester, come in. I've been waiting for you." The old doctor greeted the Winchesters warmly. It was clear he had known John for a long time. His smile faltered as his eyes landed on the limp form cradled in John's chest.
"Holy mother of Jesus, is that your son?"
John fervently nodded. "Yes, he's my youngest son, Sam. Help him, Dr. Robert, he's not breathing well."
Placing a comforting hand against John's back, Dr. Robert guided him inside the house. "Come on, this way." The old doctor walked towards a room and opened the door, motioning for John to enter.
The room looked like a miniature hospital room. There was a bed in the middle and a heart monitor by its side, as well as a couple of IV poles and other medical equipment.
"Put him down on the bed, John."
John carefully laid his insensate son onto the bed and adjusted his pillow so he could rest comfortably. After Sam was settled, Dean immediately took his usual place beside Sam's bed, taking his brother's hand into his.
Dr. Robert was doing his ministration silently. After taking Sam's vitals, he bound a blood pressure cuff around his patient's uninjured left bicep. Fastening an oxygen mask over Sam's face to aid his breathing, he inserted an IV line into Sam's hand and attached a bag of normal saline to it to keep him hydrated.
"Did you bring his medical file?" He asked nobody in particular.
Dean nodded and handed him his brother's medical file, which he had swiped from the hospital prior to the great escape.
Taking the file gratefully, the doctor thoroughly scanned the details. Raising an eyebrow, he waved to a woman, who seemed to be a nurse but was wearing casual dress and gave her some instruction. Dean watched cautiously as the woman left the room. She returned after a couple of minutes, carrying another IV bag containing a yellow liquid and hung it on the pole after not so carefully connecting it to the IV line already in Sam's hand.
Dean did not like it. It was not a hospital; the doctor seemed mad with his loose attire, unkempt hair and weird beard. And the nurse - there was a constant frown on her forehead as if she didn't like anything at all. But seeing Sam was now resting a little easier after being given the medication, he sighed and kept his mouth shut.
"All done. He's got what he needs most right now." The old doctor straightened up after fixing the heart monitor carefully, and waved at John. "C'mon Pals, you both look like you could use some food right now."
"I'm not hungry," Dean announced without wasting a second and John rolled his eyes. He was proud of his oldest son, the way he took care of his little brother, beyond imagination. But he needed something to eat, so John tried to change his mind. "Dean, son, you have to eat something…"
"I'm not leaving Sammy," He growled.
Sighing, John placed a comforting hand on his firstborn's shoulder and squeezed affectionately. He knew Dean needed some time alone with his brother. After all the drama they'd been through during the course of the day, Dean needed to know personally that his baby brother was doing alright.
"It's okay, Dean. I'll bring the dinner in here so you can eat and watch out for Sammy at the same time, alright."
Dean nodded half-heartedly, knowing his father was right. He needed to eat something otherwise he would keel over for sure.
After their Dad and the other people left the room, Dean finally had some time alone with his brother. He leaned a little closer to Sam's face and watched him carefully. Sam's breathing was a little shallow and his face was flushed with fever. He still was not well…
Dean's bottom lip quivered as the overwhelming emotion threatened to shatter his macho mask. Running a trembling hand through Sam's hair, he sniffed miserably as he remembered how close he had come to losing his little brother. That bastard had almost killed him… Shaking his head at that unpleasant memory, Dean took Sam's hot limp hand into his and held it to his right cheek. He did not want to cry; no… he was not going to cry.
"Sammy!" The tears fell anyway. "Why does all the bad crap happen to you, little brother?" Choking back on a sob, Dean put his hand on Sam's blanket-covered chest. "I always try to protect you, but never really keep you safe."
Sam's hand twitched a little in Dean's, as his head rolled towards his big brother's voice.
"Sammy, you waking up, brother?" Dean's hope flared upon seeing his brother moving even a little. But much to his dismay, nothing other than that slight motion happened.
Sighing, Dean put Sam's hand back beneath the blanket and whispered. "Ya keep fightin' Sammy, I'll be here when you wake up." Placing a comforting hand on his brother's chest, Dean lowered his head onto Sam's bed and was already asleep before his head hit the mattress.
Placing a hot mug of black coffee in front of John Winchester, Dr. Robert sat on a chair and eyed him suspiciously.
John looked like a refugee with his mud-soaked jeans and dirty, crumpled, old ratty flannel shirt. His face was pinched and drawn with worry and fear. Yes, for the first time he saw the fear on John Winchester's face.
"So, what exactly happened with you chuckleheads now, Johnny? Why did you have to escape the hospital in such a hurry with a patient in as serious a condition as your son?"
Sighing, John took a sip of the hot brew.
"I told you, someone had overdosed Sam's medication. They called the cops; I'm already on the FBI's radar and if they caught us…" sighing John continued. "Sammy wasn't safe there. What if the bastard tries to kill him again when we're not around? We can't keep an eye on him 24/7 in a frigging hospital."
"Why would some random killer want to kill an eighteen year old school boy?" The old doctor asked.
"I wish I had any idea, doc."
Nodding a little, the doctor got up and picked a newspaper from the nearest table. Opening it to a certain page, he pointed his forefinger at the picture of a young girl.
"Did you see this news? This girl disappeared almost two weeks ago and hasn't been found. Not only this; but a couple of young boys and girls have also disappeared within the last two months. And all of them are in their late teens, same age as Sam." Furrowing his brow, the experienced doctor-cum-hunter asked quizzically, "Do you think there is some connection between these disappearances or abductions - whatever they are, and Sam's near death case?"
John hung his head low as Missouri's words flooded through his brain.
'Sammy's got some special powers in him. When he turns eighteen and becomes an adult, his power will start developing.'
John's breathing sped up as he once again remembered the warning.
'He is so vulnerable right now, and wolves are there outside waiting for him. Just call me if things get worse.'
"John, you alright?" Dr. Robert asked worriedly when John didn't answer his question.
Frustration making John's head ache, he realized he didn't know what to do. All he knew was that he had to save his baby boy but he didn't have a clue as to how.
"I gotta make a call, excuse me." Abruptly, he got up and went outside, leaving his dumbfounded friend behind.
Flipping the phone's lid open, John pressed the speed dial and waited for the person to receive his call.
"Bobby, its John. You gotta help me."
"John, what happened? Are the boys alright?"
"No Bobby, its Sam."
"God damn it."
Logan was furious. Sam Winchester had once again gotten away and this time, it was a close call. Brad had almost got caught by Dean Winchester.
"I gave you one…" Logan slammed the other hunter into the wall hard and grabbed the lapels of his jacket. "…one simple task – to overdose an unconscious kid, but you had to screw it up too." He screamed against Brad's ear.
Brad flinched as Logan shouted and slammed him again just as hard.
"How… how could I know that the little prick would wake up and recognize me? He was sleeping when I went into his room but…"
"That little son of a…" Logan released the other hunter and began to pace around the small dingy room. "He's one slippery son of a bitch. Every time I try to catch him, he gets away." He was muttering to himself. "He was only a couple of inches away in that school and I didn't even recognize him." Stopping his pacing in midstride, he glanced at his partner in crime. "And he is John freaking Winchester's son. It's gonna be hard to catch him now. I know John. He must have blocked every connection we had. I can't even locate where they are right now. He's very good at hiding. God damn it."
"What're we gonna do now?" Brad asked nervously.
Gritting his teeth, Logan started to pace without answering the question. Suddenly his gaze fell onto the bound kids sitting close to each other in the corner; faces shockingly pale and tear tracks dried onto their gaunt cheeks. They looked filthy.
The kids whimpered and tried to ease back as Logan advanced towards them. Smirking at those bewildered teenagers, the cruel hunter crouched down and ran a finger down the tear-stained cheek of a thin boy.
"What are you thinking, Logan?" Brad asked worriedly. His friend was likely to do anything and he really didn't want any of those kids killed.
"If we don't get to him, he will come to us." Logan smiled devilishly.
"You heard me." Logan grabbed the poor boy's jaw hard, making him whimper in pain before continuing. "That boy's a hunter. One thing he won't let happen…" he pressed hard and Brad winced at the scene, "…is getting one of these kids killed."
Brad was shocked speechless.
"Why are you standing there like a dumbass?"
Logan's irritated tone broke his trance and he flinched.
"How are we going to lure him out? We can't even track his cell phone. John already got that covered."
Shoving the trembling boy against the wall, Logan got up and turned towards Brad.
"We can't but I know who can do this."
Not answering the asked question, Logan pulled out his cell phone from his pocket and started scouring through the phonebook.
"Whom are you calling?"
Brad's eyes widened. 'Has he gone mad?'
"Roadhouse? But you do know that Ben and Ellen Harvelle are good friends of John Winchester, right?"
Logan scowled in irritation. "I don't give a rat's ass about the Harvelles. I need the weird geek boy whatever the hell his name is who works in their bar."
Something clicked on Brad's mind.
"Oh, you mean Ash?"
"Yes, him. I want you to meet with him and get as much information about Sam Winchester from him as you can."
"But, why will he give any information about Sam?" Brad was confused as he knew how much the Harvelles admired the Winchesters.
Thrusting a piece of paper into the other man's hand, Logan smirked devilishly. "One bottle of Jack Daniels and he'll be kissing your toes. Harvelles don't have to know about that, you make sure of that alright."
"I get it."
Once Brad was out of sight, Logan took a long swig of the whiskey and slammed the almost empty bottle onto the table. He let out a short drunken laugh as he waited for his ultimate bait…
"Sam Winchester, I'm going to get you soon."
Dean was hovering between sleep and wakefulness, when he felt some movement in the bed. Sam was stirring and coughing a little. The sound of his distress woke Dean completely from his fitful slumber and he instantly leaned over his little brother who was blinking slowly at him and whose coughing seemed to have dissipated.
"Sammy! Oh thank God!" Dean sounded husky with relief. "How are you feeling, man?"
"Like cr'p." Sam croaked and tried to sit up onto the bed, wincing as the flare of pain shot up to his still healing hand.
"Easy there bro, you're not 100% yet." Sighing in relief Dean helped his still weak brother sit upright.
"What happn'd?" Sam hoarsely asked, although a little confused.
"What's the last thing you remember, Sam?" Dean's voice sounded serious as he handed his brother a glass of water.
Swallowing some of the liquid, Sam handed the half empty glass to his brother and leaned against the pillow.
"Ummm… I was at the school hall…umm I had this intense headache…" Sam winced as if thinking seemed to be hurting his already fragile head.
Dean frowned at his brother's lack of memory. He did not know if he should be happy or worried. That wasn't the only thing Sam should remember… and he didn't know if it would be wise to help Sam recall the part where he had…well almost…
"Dean, what are you hiding from me?" Sam knew something was wrong by Dean's intense frown and the way he was rubbing the back of his neck. Dean only did that when something was really, really wrong. And by the way where were they, he wondered. He had never been in this house before, and it certainly wasn't the motel where they used to live.
"Where the hell are we, Dean! And what's with this IV and stuff?" Sam seemed to grow more agitated as he noticed the IV line protruding from his left hand and the other medical equipment around the small non-hospital room. His breathing sped up a little as the memories suddenly flooded through his brain and his body started to tremble violently.
"Oh no no no….Dad no nono Dean I'm sorry Dean…Dad…oh my God Dad…" Sam shot up off the bed and grabbed his head with both hands as he mumbled incoherently and cried constantly for Dad. The IV line ripped out of his hand and blood started to trickle from the small cut.
Dean instantly pulled his severely distressed brother into his embrace and tried to calm him down.
"Shh it's okay Sammy. Dad's fine. You're okay Sammy, calm down." Rubbing his brother's back Dean continued to soothe him but nothing seemed to be working on his distressed brother.
Dean was about to call the doctor, when the door suddenly opened and John came running towards them.
"Dean, what happened?" John asked worriedly when he saw his youngest crying and trembling miserably.
"I don't know Dad; he was okay when he woke up. But then suddenly he freaked out and started calling for you." Swallowing convulsively, Dean looked at his father. "I think he still thinks you're…you're…"
"Aww Sammy." John sighed as realization hit him. He knew what had happened. His baby boy still thought he was dead.
Perching on the bed, John smoothly drew a disoriented Sam from a reluctant Dean and cradled him. Placing his youngest son's head on his shoulder, John rubbed his hand as he continued to talk to him.
"Sammy, I'm here Sammy." Patting his boy's cheek lightly, John wiped away a stray tear from Sam's pale face. "Look at me kiddo, I'm okay. I'm here with you and Dean, boy. Open your eyes for me Sammy! Sam!"
Hearing his father's voice, Sam calmed downed a little and he blinked tiredly at his Dad.
"Yeah, Sammy." Running his left hand though Sam's silky hair, John spoke again, "I'm here Sammy. I'm here."
"I hurt Dean, Dad. I hurt you…" Sam mumbled as a fresh bout of tears spilled from his already red and puffy eyes.
"No Sammy. You didn't. You didn't hurt us, Sammy, you saved us," John assured his distressed baby boy.
Sighing, Dean got up and sat on the bed behind his brother who was currently slumped against his father's chest, and wrapped his arms around the boy. 'Damn chick flick moment. Sammy needs this right now' He softly whispered in his brother's ears. "We're here Sammy, for you we're here. You saved us all. You are the reason we're here." 'And I'll always be here for you Sammy, no matter what happens I'll always protect you. Save you. Love you.'Dean silently promised to his brother and hugged him.
John smiled tiredly at his elder son and pressed a soft kiss onto Sam's head. No matter how lame it looked to the normally strong and stoic Winchesters, they also needed some love and assurance on occasion. John too knew it. He knew he had always been too tough on his boys and never let them see how much he loved them. Sam and Dean were his world and he would die to protect them. He could act like a lieutenant towards his soldiers later, but now it was his sons who needed him so much. Hugging both his boys tightly in his arms, John let his emotions flood without even caring for the outside world.
His boys were all he had left, Mary's last gift…his world.
The Next day:-
John ran his fingers through his sweaty hair as he heard the whole story of what had happened to Sam. He could not believe someone had tried to kill Sam…twice. A psycho shot his baby and Sam had been having those premonitions… no, this couldn't be possible. Not now…not his Sammy.
He looked at Dean who was also staring at his brother in awe as Sam finished retelling what had happened from the beginning. How the headache started, what happened at the playground and then Ashley's house. How he met Andy and oh God! Dean swallowed 'Another superman' but he didn't utter anything, afraid it would upset his still too weak and pale brother.
"We gotta save those kids, Dad!"
John startled as Sam's soft voice penetrated through his already preoccupied mind.
"Sam I don't think you should…" John's voice cut off in mid-sentence as Sam shook his head with frustration.
"No Dad, the psycho man is killing them. Just because they have…" Swallowing thickly, Sam turned his head from his father and brother "…just 'cause they're freaks like me."
Dean shook his head. "No Sam, you're not a freak."
Blinking rapidly Sam tried to control his emotions. He knew it was not the truth. He could see it in Dean and Dad's eyes. The way they had been staring at him when he told them what had happened, it hurt him. Sam knew Dean and Dad would never hurt him, never thought he was a freak, an abomination…but it still hurt. Deep down he knew, he wasn't normal and why the man tried to kill him. Kill Andy. Because they were freaks. Sam remembered what he had done to his brother. He flinched as that particular sore memory haunted his mind again. 'I almost killed him. He should hate me by now.' Biting his lower lip, Sam desperately tried to control his posture. He knew his family thought he was the weakling, a whiny brat…but now…with adding insult to injury, he became a freak too.
"Sam! You okay?"
Sam startled as Dean shook his shoulder lightly. He was so engrossed in his own miserable thoughts that he hadn't even noticed Dean and Dad's concerned faces staring at him.
"We have to save them, Dad. We can't let them die. The man's gonna kill them all. He already killed one of them Dad!" Sam was almost hysterical. "We have to save them."
"Okay, okay, calm down Sam!" Grabbing his son's shoulder, John shook him a little. "Just breathe, easy." When Sam's breathing returned to its normal rhythm, John sighed in relief. "We'll save them Sammy. I'm going to call some people and find out who's been doing this. We're going to save the kids and kill that son of a bitch, alright!"
Although not completely assured, Sam nodded knowing he could do nothing about this matter. They had no lead about the killer, nothing. His dad was right; his hunter buddies could help him to find the lead.
"In the meantime, you rest okay Sam!" John nodded at Dean who had already gotten the signal 'Take care of Sam' and patted Sam onto the shoulder. "Do not go wandering outside this house without having Dean or me with you. You're still in danger and do not pull any stunts while I'm out, got it!"
"Yes sir." Sam half-heartedly muttered, not happy about being grounded like a five year old.
"Good boy." John smiled at his boy's antics. Sammy was pissed and he could tell, but no matter how pissed Sam was, John couldn't let his guard down. He had almost lost his boy…
"Dean, take care of your brother and don't let anyone come near him. Call me if anything happens and take care of yourself too."
When John left, Dean turned towards his brother and saw his eyes were already drooping in exhaustion.
"Why don't you get some shuteye for a while, Sammy? You look like you're about to fall asleep while sitting up." Dean smirked as his brother rolled his eyes.
"Jerk." Sam yawned and rolled onto his back.
Chuckling, Dean straightened the blanket over his already sleeping brother's body.
Sam woke up abruptly from his fitful slumber as the shrill of his cell phone filled the too silent room.
Blinking rapidly Sam glanced around the room, sighing when he failed to spot Dean. He switched on the table lamp beside his bed and saw it was only 6 in the evening. He winced as another monotonous shriek emanated from his cell phone.
Grabbing the phone, he saw it was a private number. Frowning, he stared at the phone for some seconds. Who could have called him from a withheld number?
There was silence for a bit on the other side. Sam was getting agitated.
"Hello, who's it?"
"Sam Winchester?" The voice sounded thick and somewhat husky.
"Who wants to know?"
"Now you listen to me boy and listen very carefully. I want you to come out of that house and head towards the woods. No fussing, no asking question and don't try to call that brother of yours otherwise I'll chop his head off. Remember, my marksman is out there to shoot any unexpected object."
Sam's heart was beating furiously. He somehow knew this was him. The killer had finally found him.
"Who the hell are you?" Sam was sweating but he held his voice strong. He was itching to call Dean, who he could hear now in the bathroom down the hall, taking a shower.
"Keep your voice down boy and if you think I'm joking with you, then hear it out."
Sam's eyes widened as he heard someone groaned at the other side of the line and a faint female voice; crying. "Please don't kill me please."
"Leave her alone you son of a bitch!" Sam almost shouted but didn't forget to close the door so Dean wouldn't hear him. He couldn't risk Dean's life. He knew the man was dangerous and if he said that he would slit Dean's throat…he would.
"Boy, your dad raised you just right, dontcha' think?" He heard the man's chuckle before his voice turned malicious. "If you don't come out, I'll slit her throat and it will be on your shoulders, do you understand wonder boy?"
"No, please don't hurt her." Sam begged as he quickly put on jeans and a shirt. He had to save the girl. He had to, even if that meant he would have to fight to the death against that madman.
"I won't if you come out from your little hole." Sam grabbed his .45 and tucked in into his waistband as he quickly tied his shoelaces; phone still balanced between his left ear and shoulder. "Only ten minutes but if you're late, I'll start ripping her pretty fingers off one by one."
Sam was already at the front door, silently thanking God that Dean was still in the shower. He couldn't see Dr. Robert either; the man must have been in his weird lab and the coast was clear.
Sam strode towards the small dusty road as quickly as his still healing body would allow. He could not let another innocent victim die. He had to save those poor kids from that bastard.
As he drew near the woods, he couldn't see anything or anyone. Sam looked around the area, it was already dark and he could not make out anything clearly.
"I'm here, you bastard. Come out and show me your face." Sam shouted impatiently.
But there was an eerie silence at the other side and it was freaking Sam out.
Suddenly he heard a faint hissing sound, followed immediately by something striking forcefully against his neck. Wincing, Sam dropped the cell phone as a blinding pain shot through his neck. With a trembling hand he pulled out the object and saw it was a tranquilizer dart needle with a bloody tip. Within a second, his eyes rolled back in his head as his unconscious body slumped onto the dirt road.
Two bulky men came out of hiding from the woods and one of them knelt beside the unconscious teen, smirking cruelly.
"Oh Sammy boy, you have no idea what I've got planned for you." Logan ran his calloused hand over the smooth skin of Sam's cheek.
"Get the freak into the car. We have to move from here quickly." He instructed Brad as his partner in crime hoisted Sam's inert body over his shoulder in a fireman's carry.
Picking up the fallen cell phone, Logan put it into his pocket and ran towards his hidden car. After roughly throwing Sam's body in the back seat, he stared the car and sped away towards the east.
"The game has just begun."