A/N: So, every year I write a story for my own birthday, something I want to do that's a little different for me, sort of a "one to grow on". This year it's this one! If you've never listened to Kenny Wayne Sheppard's Blue on Black, give it a listen. It is freakin' awesome! Both the chapter titles and the feel of this story came from that song. If you've read my stuff, you know music usually plays a huge part, not so much specific lyrics or anything, but the power behind the words.
Thanks so much to supernaturalsammy67 for help with a title, and to Blue Peanut for the kick in the arse, making me feel that after reading just a bit of a rough draft for me, that this was definitely worth the work. Hope you enjoy reading this. It might be my last one for a while.
WARNINGS for gore in later chapters, and a little language from tired hunters. I'll let you know where. It's not extremely graphic but may be worse if you have an active imagination. Set late season 2 because that's still my favorite. Mentions the tattoos, I think the boys would have gotten them just after Sam's possession, even though we don't see them until s3. And this Joshua is not the Joshua we've met this season. He's our armed forces bulldog that everyone loves. ENJOY!
Tomb of the Broken
The flashlight beam panned its way across the pitch black chamber, bright light flooding it in sections. Dean crouched and stepped through the low doorway, his feet making squelching noises as they crossed moisture laden, half rotted boards. He heard something shift along the far wall, deep into the darkest corner of the room, the sound of rustling fabric.
"Sammy?" Dean whispered, his pounding heart finally hoping he'd found his brother and that hope making him unable to stay silent. The beam didn't shine far enough into the corner so Dean stepped forward, the boards beneath his feet creaking and protesting the poor distribution of his weight as he remained hunched to avoid hitting his head on the low ceiling. Water dripped on the back of his head, coursing through his short hair and down his neck, following his spine and sending chills and a feeling of disgust through him. He stepped forward again, stopping short as the wood beneath his left foot gave way and he plunged through up to his knee. He hissed as the rough splinters gouged through his denim and scratched at the joint. He shone the flashlight down and broke off the sharp point, pulling his leg back up as he crouched on somewhat safer boards around the hole.
Dean realized that the floor beneath him was hollow only the boards and a support beam here and there, all rotting as if years of moisture had wicked its way through the fibers, made up the floor. He shined the flashlight down the hole, seeing still water, murky and shadowy. He leaned over and looked closer, the shapes floating in the water resembling something familiar. He gagged, pulling quickly back from the hole as the smell of rotting flesh and rancid water burned into his lungs. He gagged again, the smell coating his nostrils and mouth, tasting it as his stomach gave up the battle and bile rushed up his throat. He leaned to the side and vomited, knowing that if something was here it heard him when he went through the floor, so there was no longer any need for stealth. Finally, when his heaving stomach settled by degrees, he heard the sweetest sound… Sam's small whimper, the one he'd heard hundreds of times when they were kids.
Dean straightened, the beam of light shooting in the direction of the sound, finally falling on his brother. Sam shied away from the beam, crying out in pain as Dean caught the tight clenching of his eyelids against the glare, the redness of them in the chalkiness of his face. Dean dropped the light to illuminate the floor near his brother and not blind him while still watching as Sam turned his head into the object at his side, a leather clad shoulder.
"No, don't hurt us! Please! Dean, don't let them take me! Don't let them take me again!" He clung to the arm in shadows, his words a low slurred moan, that Dean's light couldn't quite penetrate. The hunter moved forward again, crouched low, slowly, so as not to frighten his brother. Sam pulled his legs back, trying to move further away from the light, away from the stranger, and closer into the leather at his side. Dean's light finally fell on the object as Sam whimpered and pulled closer to it, the thing sliding sideways into the beam. A rotting, torn up head, connected to the shoulders beneath the leather, gray and covered with greenish lichen and bits of cartilage and tissue, shadowed Sam's face as he tried to hide between it and the beam. The skeleton, Dean saw was clothed in a dark leather jacket, tee shirt, jeans and boots, all barely hanging on, half rotted and not concealing the rattling of bones, and squelching of rotted meat as Sam's movements jostled it.
"No…Don't hurt us!" Sam grabbed the skeleton and kicked away from Dean with more strength and fear than Dean could have imagined. "Leave us alone! I won't let you hurt him again." Dean shone the light slightly higher, catching more of Sam's face in the beam. Sam's eyes watered profusely, his pupils like pinpricks, the contraction evidence of being long deprived of light. Dirt caked Sam's face, mud like in the fissures of his chapped lips and the lines of pain and distress around his eyes and mouth. Darker shadows on his face and neck showed Dean that his little brother was covered with bruises. His jaw and chin had a dark layer of better than week old stubble, his usual deep reddish brown, and the reason Sam never let it grow into a beard. His cheek bones, even with the forming beard were more prominent than Dean remembered.
"Hey, Sammy, shh. I don't know what happened to you but I'm right here." Dean put his shaking hand to his own chest and slowly moved closer to his distressed brother. "I'm right here."
"No. Another trick…" Sam growled, his voice taking on a feral tone, one Dean vaguely recognized with a sinking heart…as insanity.
A/N: I have Sunday and Monday off from work because of the holiday, and will probably post the first actual chapter of this story then. Happy Easter if you celebrate, either by bunny or whatever. Thanks for sharing my 29th with me!