Originally appeared in the Blood Brothers 3 Zine.

The Cure

Chapter 1

"You have got to be kidding me!" a very indignant Dean Winchester scoffed as a beautiful brunette with long legs and curves that screamed 'I'm noisy in bed' passed by him and practically molested his younger brother with her eyes. Wanton bitch even licked her lips! Sam, for his part, blushed furiously and flashed a quick dimpled grin at her attention, always playing the shy boy and this woman was totally sucking it up. "What the hell? She blind?"

Sam pushed him further into the bar, maneuvering the still protesting Dean towards a table in the back. The brunette's gaze followed them, well Sam actually. "I don't get it." He raised an arm and did a quick sniff. "Do I smell?"

"Dean," his brother rolled his eyes and then indicated towards a chair, "Sit." Without waiting to see if Dean actually complied, Sam was gone, heading through the haze and towards the counter of the only bar of whatever-the-hell named town they were in. Dean couldn't remember the name and honestly couldn't give a damn. They weren't on a job, on the way to a job, or even thinking about a job. Just two bros hanging out and taking it easy for a day or two before they headed to Bobby Singer's to help him with his roof.

He shook his head in wonderment at that. They were hunters god-damnit, not roofers. However Bobby's place had leaks. One particularly nasty one had woken Dean up thinking he'd pissed his bed the last time they'd stayed there and Sam, bleeding heart suck up that he was, promised they'd give Bobby a hand to repair it before the rainy season set in. The older hunter lived in South Dakota for cripes sake, Dean wasn't even sure they had a rainy season. But here they were, in between hunts, no missing limbs or broken bones to lay them up, and on their way to do manual labor. Actual work. Yay. Whoopee. Dean was oozing with excitement. If it wasn't for the fact that they were doing this for Bobby, he'd be tempted to feign malaria or something just to get out of it.

And now the only hot chick in this whole damn place was following his little brother around like Sam was the second coming. Dean's manhood was insulted. Sure the kid getting a bit could only improve his less than sunny disposition but did it have to be with the only looker in the place? Where were all the ugly chicks?

A potbellied farmer with no teeth and even less hair caught Dean's eye and gave him a gummy grin. Dean sank further down in his chair and hoped to God his brother brought back something a hell of a lot stronger than beer.

"Hey," a beer clunked down on the table in front of him. Dean scowled. Sam ignored him. "So I was thinking-"

"That's never a good thing," the older hunter interrupted peevishly as he picked up the bottle and swallowed back a large mouthful.

"What's the matter with you?"

His surliness hadn't gone unnoticed but it wasn't fair either, so Dean exhaled loudly and tried to make nice. It wasn't Sam's fault that some girl had bad taste when Dean really could have used a little female company tonight. Maybe getting a bit wouldn't only be beneficial to his sibling. "Nothing." Not much better but at least this time he only sounded petulant.

Sam eyed him knowingly and Dean fought to keep from reaching across the table and punching him out. He hated that look. The one that said 'I know there's something bugging you and I'm going to keep staring at you until you break down and emotionally bleed out all over the dirty table in this public place'. God, he hated his brother sometimes.

"Okay, fine, you really want to know?" He straightened up in his seat, sudden unexpected anger lowering his tone and tightening his mouth. "I really hate how we always got to do what you want to do." Okay, so he sounded about five and it wasn't really true but Dean was in a foul mood and Sam had insisted on him sharing.

"Huh?" Sam stared at him probably as shocked by Dean's accusation as Dean was.

"You heard me." Motor-mouth was off and running and he found himself wondering when he'd become possessed by a pissed off house wife. "We never get to do what I want to do. It's always the jobs you pick, the places you want to go, where you want to eat -"

"Dean," Sam, God bless him, tried to interrupt. "You drive-"

"While you bitch and nag all the way." Dean snorted. "I swear Sam, keeping you happy is more work then any girlfriend."

Hurt flashed across Sam's face. "How would you know?" His brother snapped in defensive anger. "You've never had one!"

Dean stiffened but Sam was finished and fired off a parting barb before he got up from the table and headed back towards the bar. "Girlfriend implies more than a one night stand, asshole."

As he watched his brother just walk away Dean closed his eyes and let his chin drop to his chest. What the hell had just happened? He wasn't really pissed off with Sam, he was just in a black mood and Sam was there, knowing him too well and expecting an answer, but sometimes Dean just wanted to be left alone to stew. 'Well, 'asshole',' he mentally berated, 'looks like you got what you wanted.' He briefly wondered why he'd even agreed to go out.

Shoving his chair away from the table, Dean got up and left the bar. He'd apologize to Sam in the morning by letting the kid sleep in. But for tonight it would probably be better for everyone concerned if he just went home. Or, in his case, back to the cheap little run-down dive of a motel room they'd rented for a night.

Sam would understand. He always did.

Sam had no idea what had just happened. Sure Dean had been a bit quieter than usual tonight but nothing to suggest he was that upset. It happened from time to time, unexpected blowups, usually about stupid things just because they were two alpha males sharing the same living, work and play places 24/7, but usually Sam got some inkling of impending trouble before it just happened. And yes, his brother had been under a lot of stress lately but – really? Was Dean that angry with him? And about what? Voicing his opinion? Sam let out a slow exhale as he grabbed an empty stool by the bar and sat down placing his almost full beer on the counter in front of him. This was not exactly how he'd planned on spending the evening. Actually he'd been naively looking forward to just hanging with Dean. Just two bros, no jobs, no huge need to earn cash thanks to an actual paying gig last time, just hanging out. And then Dean went all mad-face on him.

Sighing again, the young hunter glanced back towards the table, unsurprised to see his brother gone. Patented angry Dean retreat tactic. Shaking his head, he faced forward again, lifted the bottle to his lips and sucked back a long drink knowing Dean'd eventually turn up back at the motel and they'd sweep this evening under the rug like everything else and move on. There just wasn't enough room in the Impala to keep everything.

"Hey there," the sultry voice almost in his ear made Sam jump. "D'you mind if I sit here?" It was the brunette and she wasn't taking no for an answer practically pushing the guy who'd been sitting next to Sam off his chair. The guy shot her a dirty look but moved anyway. Sam was impressed.

"Apparently not," he gave her an amused little smile not used to girls being so forward. He usually attracted the quieter, shy type. Well shy 'til he got them in bed. 'Oh God,' he blushed furiously, did he actually just think that? 'I'm channeling Dean!'

"You're blushing?" the woman cooed as she leaned in even closer, twining her fingers playfully through a thin golden chain that hung from her neck. Sam absently noticed the pretty red gem at the end of the chain, icicle like in shape it caught his attention for a moment, "that's so cute!" She glanced around. "Where's your friend?"

"Who, Dean?" Sam shook his head, pulling his eyes from the stone and shrugged, "Gone back to our room."

"Your room?" an odd look passed over the woman's face. "I'm sorry, I-"

"It's okay," he assured her not wanting to let her think he and Dean were, ah, an item. "He's my brother."

"Oh," she perked up, "That's good. So," she brushed her lips against his cheekbone and whispered, "What say we cut to the chase and just go right back to my room for a bit? I have black sheets on my bed."

Shivering, Sam swallowed hard. Oh God. It had been a while, a long while and she had black sheets – but then he thought about his obviously bothered brother probably back in the motel room by now glaring holes into the defenseless black and white television set, and deflated. Family first… and while Dean left him on occasion for an all nighter, that wasn't Sam's M.O and the last thing he wanted, on top of apparently annoying the shit out of Dean with his every breath, was for his brother to get worried if Sam didn't follow him back soon. That would just end up embarrassing as Dean busted down the door and caught him, literally, with his pants down. It wouldn't be the first time unfortunately, but Sam had learned and it had only happened, twice.

"Look… while I really do appreciate the offer, I do… I can't. I really can't," he didn't want her to think she wasn't attractive 'cause she was and, Oh God the sheets were probably silk too, that wasn't the problem. "It's not you. Believe me. It's not you… It's me." Smooth, Sammy, real smooth. "I just," he glanced over his shoulder towards the door he knew Dean had left gone out of and then gave her a half shrug, "I just kinda got some other things I need to take care of tonight, you know?"

Eyes so dark they were black in the smoky lighting followed his gaze to the door and back again. Something cold settled over her face and she pulled back from him. "Oh, I get it." Sultry turned vicious and Sam found himself wincing. "Should have seen it from a mile away." She snorted and tossed her long black hair, "Your brother? Yeah, sure, whatever helps you sleep at night, big boy. You know? There's a special place in hell for people like you!" Without another word, the woman was gone leaving Sam stunned and speechless. Was he sending out 'I piss people off tonight' vibes? Because between Dean and this girl, he was seriously starting to wonder if he smelled.

Slumping further against the bar, Sam closed his eyes and rubbed a finger against the bridge of his nose. If he didn't end up with a tension headache before the night was over, he'd be buying lotto tickets.

Sam finished his beer slowly. Not really wanting it but since he'd already paid for it, too stubborn to leave it behind either. He really was his father's son. The voices around him didn't matter as he tried to piece together what might have set Dean off, finally deciding there was only one person who could answer that and that person had already gone home for the night and had probably sewn the crotches of Sam's underwear together by now.

And how unusual was it for Sam to be the last one still out on the town?

'Oh well,' he mused, 'there's always a first.' Deciding that he'd had enough 'fun' for one evening though, the young man pushed away from the bar and stood up. He'd just hit the head and then call it a night, after all he had a television to save and who knew, maybe there'd even be something good on it worth watching. A good flick might serve a better, amicable brotherly evening then this poorly planned bar excursion.

On his way back from the bathroom, the woman suddenly appeared by his side again. She held out a full beer and gave him a sheepish look. "Peace offering?"

Sam hesitated and then took the drink.

"I'm really sorry," she admitted, her face in such contrast to the angry one of earlier, "I'm just not very good with rejection." She gave a shy smile. "Whatever the reason. Please," the woman indicated a table, "let's try this again."

Again, Sam hesitated and then decided what could be the harm of another half an hour especially when space was what Dean seemed to need. He gave a quick nod, "Okay," and followed her towards the table.

An hour later Sam was enjoying himself. Now that she wasn't trying to get him in her bed, the girl turned out to be witty, funny, and came from a very large family which Sam found fascinating especially as she regaled him with tales that had him cringing and thanking a God his brother didn't believe in, that he only had Dean.

Speaking of Dean, Sam realized he really should be leaving. Saying his good-byes, he noticed how quiet she'd became, her dark eyes just watching him and it started to creep him out. With a final 'it's been fun,' he stood and then dropped back down in the seat as a wave of dizziness spun the bar around on him. "Whoa," he tried to shake it off, his alarm growing as lassitude swept over him and he knew something was wrong. Sure, he wasn't the drinker his brother or father was, but surely Sam could handle two beers. Two freakin' beers. But as the girl's face swam in and out of focus, a horrifying reality slammed into him. He wasn't drunk. He'd been drugged.

"You," he slurred as he raised a heavy arm to point at her, "Wh'd ya do?"

The woman smirked, her eyes moving to some place behind him. Sam didn't have to turn to know someone was behind him. She wasn't in this alone. Whatever this was.

Twenty-two years of instinct and training slammed adrenaline through his veins and Sam was on his feet and met the threat with shocking lucidity. Dean would be so proud. Three guys, homegrown locals with pool sticks and sick smiles closed in. A definite 'I piss people off vibe' then…

Grabbing his chair, Sam swung it at them, his bold defense scattering and momentarily stunning the other guys. Unfortunately it didn't last long and as Sam continued to use the chair, alternating using it as a shield and battering ram, he knew he needed to get out of the bar and get away. Without anyone – Dean – to watch his back, and as whatever they'd drugged him with slowly overpowered the adrenaline rush, he knew it was only a matter of time before he went down. And Sam really preferred not to find out what they had planned for him.

Two more guys joined in – geez was the whole bar in on this? – trying to corral the young hunter but in the end it was the drugs that took him down, crashing his long body to his knees just outside the bar doorway, and as something slammed against the back of his head and he fell face first onto the gravel, Sam had one final fleeting thought. Dean…

Dean was not very happy. The black mood that had settled over him earlier that night had fully mutated into something way past pissed as he stared down in disbelief at his now completely soaked jeans and shirt, the can of beer he'd just opened having apparently shook itself up in anticipation of an unsuspecting Dean Winchester needing a drink when he got back to the motel.

"Great," the incensed hunter growled as he stalked to the bathroom to drop the still fizzing can into the sink then flinging his hands dramatically to get some of the wetness off them, "Just freakin' great. What else can go wrong tonight?" Dean savagely stripped off his shirt and jeans and flung them into the bathtub, his nose already crinkling at the smell. Wonderful, the place was going to reek like a brewery now. Scowling and cursing vehemently under his breath, the man briefly considered getting dressed again but then decided the safest thing might be for him to just go to bed.

Scrubbing a hand through his cropped hair, Dean stood in the bathroom doorway for a moment then exhaled loudly and crossed to his bed, scowling harder when he stepped right into a wet spot. Just swell. Cursing loudly, he sat on the edge of the bed and glared at the clock, half expecting Sam to have followed him back by now. Not that his brother had to of course, or anything, but still… that would be so Sam. The agitated man huffed bitterly as he leaned over to pluck off his beer-drenched socks, it might be in Sam's best interest to actually stay out a bit longer tonight. And as a loud crack was the only warning Dean got before the bed frame broke dumping him unceremoniously on the floor, he was suddenly sure of it.

Sam had no idea how long he was awake before he realized he was awake. Consciousness just suddenly seemed to bloom, instantly tossing him back to reality with a head full of cotton and a body feeling like lead. Confused and unsure of what was going on, he called out for the one person who could always make sense of things for him, his brother.

"D-Dean?" the strained croaked word unnerved Sam and he fought harder to try to understand. Why did he feel so weak? Why couldn't he move his arms? Slowly and with great effort, the hunter was able to lift his head and realized what some of the problem was, he was tied sitting up in a hard back chair.


Blinking hard, he forced his eyes to focus, his breathing quickening as he saw he was alone. What was going on? Then memory slammed into him, brutal and in frightening color – he'd been drugged and kidnapped. But why? What'd he and Dean do this time? They hadn't been in town long enough to piss anyone off… had they?

Sam still couldn't think very well, the drugs probably, but he remembered the girl – was she really that angry that he hadn't wanted to go home with her? Scrunching up his face in disdain, he snorted softly as he turned his attention to the thick rope stretched across his chest, pinning him to the chair and muttered, "Black sheets, my ass." His wrists were bound behind the chair by a thinner rope but his legs weren't restrained. That was something at least.

Flexing his wrists to try and loosen the rope, Sam took a closer look around. The room he was being held in was actually a small wooden shed, an older one and not very well maintained, he guessed, as he caught glimpses of the outside through gaps in the wood and felt the cool dampness of passing air on his skin. He shivered slightly. It was light, but the day was grey and wet. Continuing to struggle with his bonds, Sam wondered if Dean realized he was missing yet.

He wanted to yell for help but wasn't ready to let his captors know he was awake either, although as he was left un-gagged and could hear nothing beyond birds and rustling leaves, he wasn't getting a good feeling about anyone helpful hearing. The silence was telling. Hell, if someone started playing 'dueling banjoes' any moment, Sam didn't think he'd be surprised. Freaked? Yes. Surprised? No.

And then he heard the sound of crunching gravel. Someone was coming to see him. More crunching gravel. More than one person then.