Disclaimer: I don't own Supernatural.
Major AU from the end of S3. Wincest.
Sam stared at the gate that had started so much trouble. It was here that he had learnt the awful truth of his death and what Dean had done, here that an army of demons had been unleashed and it was here that he had last seen his father and had seen Azazel die. He held the colt in his hands, turning it over absently. Two months ago the hellhounds had come for Dean, with Lilith gloating over them. Two months since he'd watched his brother torn apart in front of him and two months since he'd killed Lilith. She hadn't realised that Dean's death had been the final straw for Sam; he'd flipped all those little switches Ava had talked about and after that destroying Lilith had been so easy. Bobby thought he'd used Ruby's knife when in fact he'd simply reached out with his mind and snuffed her out like a candle. Hunting had gotten a lot easier, not that he'd done much of that. But demons ran from him now, called him Master, the Boy King.
Sam knew there was no way to bring Dean back from hell, his body was a mangled mess even if Sam could get his soul back he'd be dead again in seconds. Sam needed Dean like he needed air, he couldn't live without him. But that was okay now because there was a place they could be together forever. Sam smiled and inserted the Colt into the keyhole, watching it spin and the gates open. He squared his shoulders and stepped inside, commanding the doors to close behind him. As long as he had Dean, hell could be home too.
He walked through hell, forcing himself to ignore the souls being tortured as he searched, demons cowering away from him until he found one that actually approached him. He knew this demon, knew her better than any others really because she'd been inside him for over a week.
"Meg." He stated flatly and she bowed low, seeing the anger in his yellow eyes.
"Master." She answered, not looking up at him.
"Take me to him." Sam ordered and there was no need to specify who, they all knew why he was there, why he was finally taking his place among them. She led him deeper and deeper into the pits and then stopped at an alcove with a single rack inside. Sam knew without looking who was stretched upon it, he could feel the closeness of his brother. He snarled at the demons working on Dean and they ran, a glance banished Meg from his presence too and he took a deep breath to calm himself. Dean didn't need to see his anger or the physical effects of his powers. Slowly, yellow eyes faded to soft hazel and he stepped into the alcove, reaching out with shaking hands to undo the chains that bound Dean to the rack.
Dean, his hero and a man that could be shot and insist he was fine, whimpered and cringed away from his touch, eyes clenched tight. Dean was shaking, from pain or fear Sam wasn't sure, and muttering softly under his breath. Sam choked back a sob and gently laid his hand on Dean's forehead. Dean froze before trying to pull away, almost falling off the rack.
"Shh. Dean it's okay, it's me Sammy. I've got you big brother." Sam spoke softly, keeping his tone soothing and wild green eyes shot open to stare at him in horror.
"Dean? Can you...do you know who I am?" Sam asked slowly, not sure what was wrong.
"Not again, please not again. Not him, never him." Dean's please broke Sam's heart. How many times had they used his form to torment Dean?
"Dean, it's really me." Sam soothed, gently stroking Dean's face. Realising the one thing that might help Dean believe, Sam reached under his shirt and removed the amulet holding it up so Dean could see it. Green eyes locked onto the familiar item hungrily and Sam smiled. He slowly reached out to lower the cord around Dean's neck and one thin hand twitched as if to grasp the amulet. Dean stiffened and then looked down in shock at his unbound hands, quickly moving to clasp the amulet in both hands. Dean clung to it and Sam smiled.
"I kept it for you Dean, knew you'd want it back." Sam reached out gently to try and hoist Dean up. Dean whimpered and tried to struggle without letting go of his amulet.
"Dean, hey, it's okay, just want to get you off this thing." Sam assured him, rubbing gentle circles on whatever unbroken skin he could find.
"No. Sammy can't be here, can't leave ever. Sammy's safe, has to be safe." Dean muttered and Sam swallowed. He gently lifted Dean into his arms, actually relieved when Dean passed out, it would make thing easier for the moment. A thought had a demon appearing at his side, ready to fulfil his orders.
Dean woke to an absence of pain and wondered what new torture had been thought up for him now. He didn't know how long he'd been in hell but it had been years and he had long ago given up any hope that Sam would manage to rescue him. It was hopeless, the only way out was as a demon and Dean dreaded the day he became one of the things he hunted, he clung to the hope that Sam would be long dead by then, he didn't want Sammy to have to hunt him, even if he no longer remembered his brother by then. He tried to muffle a sob, not wanting them to know he was awake again but he couldn't stop the sobs. He felt movement nearby and tensed, waiting for pain that never came. Instead gentle, human hands wiped him down with what felt like a cool cloth. Dean bit back a scream at the momentary kindness, the torture afterwards was always so much worse.
"It's okay Dean, I've got you. Not gonna let anyone hurt you ever again big brother." An oh so familiar voice said and Dean's sobs grew loader. This was the worst torture, the times a demon came to him in Sam's form, offering hope only for it to be cruelly snatched away.
"I know you're awake Dean; come on open your eyes, please Dean." Sam pleaded and Dean found himself opening his eyes to see what looked like Sam leaning over him with a cloth in one hand and a small smile on his face.
"Hey. You hurt anywhere?" the demon asked and Dean just stared.
"Please say something Dean."
"Not him, stop pretending." Dean demanded shakily and then watched a lone tear fall from hazel eyes. That was new, no matter how good the imitation they could never cry. The tear made its way down the imitations face to drop onto Dean's face, he flinched and then his tongue darted out, desperate for any sort of liquid and sure enough he tasted salt water. Even if a demon could cry would it be salt water like a human?
"Guess you're thirsty, sorry I didn't realise." The demon babbled and then searched around a bit before holding a glass of clear liquid out to him.
"It's just water, promise. See?" The demon took a sip himself and then held it out to Dean before frowning.
"That's not going to work. Okay." He muttered before putting the glass and reaching out to Dean who automatically flinched away.
"Easy, just helping you sit up so you don't choke." Was murmured before warm, gentle hands helped lift him and then lowered him again but he was shocked to find he was now reclining on what felt like pillows.
"That's better." The glass was picked up and held to his lips. Dean cautiously darted his tongue out to test and sure enough cool water slipped across his tongue. He drank greedily but then the glass was pulled away.
"Slowly Dean, don't want you to be sick. Wait a few minutes and you can have more."
Sam watched Dean as he lay against the pillows; at least he seemed more coherent now. Though he was still insisting Sam wasn't Sam. It hurt but he would just have to persist until Dean accepted the truth. He'd make sure no demons came into the rooms he'd had created for them, he didn't want to spook Dean or make him remember the torture anymore than he already did. He was just glad he'd found Dean before he'd started to become a demon himself. He didn't know what he would have done if Dean had forgotten him. He smiled softly at Dean and then lifted the glass to his lips again. It didn't surprise him Dean was thirsty, sure technically he was just a soul but he still remembered needing water and therefore still got thirsty. It wasn't a shock to know he'd been denied water or food, Dean was far too skinny but he would fix that. He kept up the gentle touches, trying to show Dean that he was safe now.
"Just get on with it. Won't scream." Dean muttered finally and Sam sighed.
"I'm not going to hurt you Dean, I could never hurt you." Sam answered softly as Dean finally drifted back off to sleep. Once he was sure Dean would sleep for a while Sam slipped from the room, he would find the ones that had harmed Dean and they would pay for what they had done. He needed to know what had been done, as much as he dreaded learning it, to figure out a way to help Dean. He left a demon to guard the door in case someone got the bright idea to try and hurt Dean again.
When Dean woke again he was alone, there was no sign of the fake Sam. He struggled to sit up and look around, something he hadn't really been able to do before. The room he was in looked like many of the bedrooms he'd been in searching for clues during a hunt. He was on the king sized bed, with a table on either side of it. The room was done in soft colours, mainly blues, a big difference to the colours he'd been surrounded with for years. He shivered and then struggled to get out of the bed. He fell to his knees on the soft floor and then fought to his feet, grabbing onto a chair to steady himself. Opening a door he found a closet with clothes that looked familiar, he reached for a shirt and held it to his face...it was his! Shaking hands searched the rest and found some were his and others were obviously for a taller, slimmer person...the thing masquerading as Sam. He couldn't let himself hope this was real because if he did then when the betrayal came it would hurt so much worse. The next door revealed a luxurious bathroom and Dean couldn't help the small smile at the sight of a shower, he was filthy and he knew he stank of his own blood and other fluids. Grabbing clothes from the wardrobe he moved slowly to the shower, leaning against a wall as the warm water ran over his body.
He froze when he saw the figure sitting on the bed and then backed towards the wall. The Sam thing smiled at him softly.
"Glad you found the clothes and shower. Feel better?" He asked and Dean refused to answer.
"Hungry? Got some food, I know it's not a burger but I don't think you could handle one at the moment." Sam stood and walked slowly towards him and Dean realised he'd backed himself into a corner. He tensed ready to fight but the Sam thing just held out a hand to him, not moving any closer.
"Come on Dean, tomato soup is waiting, even managed to get you some coffee." Sam pleaded and Dean's hand went up to the amulet around his neck. He could remember this Sam giving it to him out on the rack but how did he get it? Had Sam buried it with him or had a demon taken it off Sam in a fight? Was his brother dead even now? The thing that looked like Sam just stood there, waiting patiently and staring at him with Sam's pleading puppy eyes. Dean chokes back a sob, this thing is so much like Sam, the best one yet, and it's killing him to see it look at him like that.
"Not real, not him. Can't be." Dean sobbed and his legs buckled but he didn't hit the floor. Warm, strong arms caught him and pulled his close to a warm, living body and Dean lost the fight, clinging to the offered comfort.
"It's okay Dean, it's going to be okay." A soothing voice breathed into his ear as he sobbed, wishing it could be real.
Sam sat on the floor, holding Dean close for the first time while his brother was conscious. It was a start at least, that Dean was letting him hold him even though Sam suspected it was simply because Dean was too tired to fight him at the moment. He laid gentle kisses on the top of Dean's head, gently stroking still damaged skin, although it was healing at an incredible rate. When Dean's sobs abated Sam stood up, easily carrying Dean back over to the bed where he tucked him in with a small smile and then held the bowl of soup up for Dean to eat. A shaking hand reached out and carefully clutched the spoon. Sam relaxed as Dean slowly began to feed himself. He ignored the fearful glances between spoonfuls and just relaxed beside Dean as his brother ate. Being here with Dean was a lot simpler than out there amongst those who now followed him, here he could be Sam, not the Boy King, and he loved it. He half dreaded the day Dean learned the truth but by then it was possible Dean would be a demon himself, not one of those low class black eyed body stealers but one closer to his own power. The process would be slow because he would not cause Dean pain intentionally but really he did have eternity now.
Should I continue?