Midnight at Singer Salvage

Summary: Bobby receives some late-night visitors. Specifically: two Winchester brothers, one of whom is injured. Bobby's POV. Slight limp!Sam. Season 2-ish.

AN: I just wanted to see Dean tend to his hurt brother from an outside perspective. Random info: I started this story three years ago!

Disclaimer: "Any society that needs disclaimers has too many lawyers."- Anonymous. I don't own anything.

He crept up the stairs slowly, trying to be as stealthy as possible, even though the creaking of the stairs- and his joints- made it difficult. Feeling guilty for spying, he tried to keep his conscience at bay by reminding himself that this was his house, and they were the intruders. But he still couldn't help but feel like he was crossing the line.

Sure, they were the ones that had shown up on his doorstep when the clock was nearing midnight. Normally he was glad when they appeared, but this time he had gotten a phone call beforehand warning of their impending approach. Fortunately he hadn't been asleep, but had been buried in research for hours, and was actually surprised to notice it had gotten so late when he answered the phone.

"Bobby, are you home?" Dean had asked. On the surface his voice sounded rather calm, but Bobby could hear the thin cracks and the panic being held at bay. When he answered to the affirmative, Dean had responded hurriedly, "We need a place to crash for a while- we'll be there in fifteen minutes."

They hung up right after that, and true to his word, Bobby heard the rumble of the Impala thirteen minutes later. Not knowing what to expect, he had looked out the window into the darkness to see Dean dash out of the driver's seat and around to the passenger side where he carefully opened the door. As he shifted around, Bobby glimpsed into the car and saw a rather motionless Sam with his head against the back of the seat, and even in the dark he could tell that the left side of the boy's face seemed messed up.

Dean set about trying to arouse his brother and Sam, never one to deny him, blinked open his good eye and tried unsuccessfully to extract himself from the vehicle. Kneeling next to him, Dean halted his movements and exchanged some words with him, to which Sam nodded slowly. What occurred next looked like well-rehearsed choreography as Dean helped his brother to stand with as little movement on Sam's part as possible.

Dean's support of his brother didn't end there. Slinging Sam's arm around his own shoulders, he bore most of his weight on the long, sluggish progression to the front porch. Sam tried his hardest to run under his own steam, but it was apparent by the sweat glistening on his forehead that simply shuffling his feet seemed to be more like running a marathon for him.

When the parade finally reached the bottom of the stairs, Bobby stepped outside. Dean barely glanced up at him before going back to concentrating on keeping Sam stable. Bobby knew that Dean would never admit to needing help with his brother, so he asked instead, "Want help?"

A mere grunted, "No," was his answer. In truth, Sam was actually starting to become more cognizant and coordinated, so Bobby let the matter drop. He did offer, "If you can make it upstairs, plant him in the spare room. If not, couch is just as good."

Dean obviously decided to use the former choice because he directed Sam towards the stairs. Shaking his head at the two brothers making their way up the staircase, Bobby turned and headed outside.

Returning inside with the boys' bags, Bobby headed upstairs with his own first aid kit to check up on them.

Walking into the room, he found Dean already busy tending to Sam who lay pliant on the bed. Sitting on the edge of the bed, Dean was using a moist cloth to gently wipe away some of the dried blood that covered the entire left side of the boy's face.

Bobby eased into the room and set the duffels on the ground at the foot of the bed and walked to the other side of Sam. "Brought this up," he held out the first-aid kit. "Didn't know if you'd need it or not."

Dean glanced up and took the kit. "Yeah, thanks."

After a while, Dean had cleaned up the blood, clearly revealing the source of it all. Four deep gashes ran from Sam's left temple down to his jaw line, one of which just barely missed his eye. However, Dean also revealed that there was another hidden in Sam's hair. Fortunately, only one would require stitches.

As Bobby dug through the kit searching for the pain killers, Dean set about waking up Sam. The boy woke up easily, eyes blinking slowly. However, it worried the older men how he seemed disoriented. "Dean? Where are we?" he asked, confused.

"We're at Bobby's now, remember?" Dean answered slowly. Sam muttered an "Oh yeah" before his eyes slid shut. "Hey! You can't drift off right now kiddo, I've gotta play doctor on you."

Sam grimaced, "Stitches?"

Dean nodded sympathetically. "But we'll dope you up first." Dean signaled to Bobby who handed over the pills and a bottle of water. Dean helped his little brother ingest the pills and then laid his head back down, trying to get him comfortable before the painful process of stitching started.

Bobby couldn't help but be impressed at Dean's bedside manner. While expertly threading the needle, he kept up an easy flow of conversation with Sam to keep the boy awake. He knew John had taught his sons first aid, but the rest of it was all Dean. Taking care of Sam had been second nature for so long, that it was as easy for him as breathing.

The last few minutes, Sam's eyes had slowly become less and less focused as the pills took effect and lessened his grip on reality. Dean noticed and asked softly, "Sammy? You with me?"

Sam tilted his head towards his brother and smiled drunkenly. "Dean? We been drinkin'?"

Dean chuckled softly. "Unless you think getting walloped by a Wendigo's claws count as getting drunk, then yeah, sure."

At this, Sam seemed to deflate slightly. "Oh yeah…" Just as it appeared that Sam was going to drift off, he snapped awake. "What about the cops? Did we ditch them?"

Dean glanced nervously at Bobby. "Yeah, Sam. We lost them. You get some sleep now."

This appeared to be an order that Sam gladly followed, the combination of medication, pain and exhaustion sent him tumbling into oblivion immediately.

Finishing applying gauze to Sam's injuries, Dean wouldn't look Bobby in the face. Even when the bandaging process was finished, Dean continued to fiddle with Sam's pillows and blankets, occasionally fiddling with the fresh bandaging.

Finally Bobby proclaimed, "When you're done stalling, come downstairs."

As he turned for the door, Bobby could have sworn he could see a blush creeping onto Dean's face.

Bobby was lounging behind his desk, drinking from a beer bottle when Dean came down the stairs.

Gesturing to another beer bottle with his own, Bobby silently invited Dean to sit. As Dean perched- yes, perched- on his chair, Bobby asked his opening question. "So… wendigo, huh?"

Staring at his beer bottle like it was a gorgeous blonde stretched across the hood of the Impala, Dean responded, "Yeah, in Minnesota."

Bobby paused. "You gonna tell me more than that or am I-"

"I screwed up okay?" Dean exploded, now staring at Bobby. The older hunter knew well enough that Dean wouldn't need prodding to continue, so he stayed silent. "We knew it was a wendigo, but it was a tricky bastard. Sam played bait, and I got the shot off as soon as I saw the fugly, but he still managed to get a good swipe at Sammy 'fore the flare got him."

Taking a swig from his bottle, Bobby pondered, "That don't sound like anybody's fault to me."

"Yeah well, Sam had told me before we went into the woods that the police had been patrolling pretty heavy. I just ignored it, ya know? Well, until they heard the flare go off and started coming after us," Dean scratched the back of his neck. "They managed to follow us to the car and chased us. Even with pulling all of my tricks they stuck to our trail pretty good. Once we hit the border though we finally lost 'em. I figured we shouldn't risk staying at a hotel, so I woke you up instead."

"You know I don't mind, boy. And don't go losing sleep over this. You couldn't a-known that the cops were so close," Bobby assured.

Dean sighed. "Yeah. Just felt like a rookie mistake. I'm mostly embarrassed."

Bobby shook his head. "Don't worry boy, it's happened to the best of us."

"I just felt really bad for Sammy. Things were rough for a while and he was getting banged up good. And I didn't have time to give him any painkillers."

"Well you know what? That boy's still alive and you'll still be his hero in the morning." Dean smirked at that. "So, no harm done."

"Yeah, I guess." The boy took a final drain from his bottle and stood. "I think I'm going to hit the sack."

Bobby nodded and watched as Dean trudged up the stairs. Leaning his head back against the wooden chair, he just sat and listened as the floorboards creaked overhead as Dean moved about. When it was silent, Bobby decided it was probably a good idea to go to bed himself. It was the middle of the night after all.

He planned on checking in on the boys one last time just to make sure they were settled, and stayed as silent as possible so as not to disturb them.

After sneaking up the stairs successfully, he continued to creep down the hall to the boys' room. Once there, he paused right outside the door, planning on just peeking in… Until a voice called out to him:

"You're not as sneaky as you used to be Bobby. Getting kinda rusty there."

Mumbling under his breath, Bobby gave away his position and stood in the doorway. As shocked as he was that Dean had heard him, he was even more surprised at the scene before him.

Sam lay in the same position as before, lying on his back, his face turned to the right to expose his injured left side. However, Dean now sat against the headboard of Sam's twin bed on Sam's right side. And his left hand was busy smoothing Sam's hair back from his face.

The move wasn't un-Dean-like, it was just that he usually never exposed this vulnerability to anybody that wasn't a Winchester.

For Dean to allow somebody to see such a scene was a major event. It was almost like Dean was letting Bobby closer to him and his family. To be granted such trust was moving, and Bobby swore right then that he would never misplace such valuable trust.

Dean smirked across the room at him. "Your ninja skills need a lot of work there, Bobby."

"I've got a lot of windows that need washing too, if you wanna keep running your mouth."

The smirk dropped from Dean's face at the threat. "You know, Sam would probably be better at windows, I mean, he is taller than me and all…"

"So you finally admit it, eh?"

It was clear that Bobby had gotten Dean's goose as the boy stammered, "You know what? I don't need to take this! I've had a very stressful day and I need my sleep." He said this without moving from his position. "See you in the morning Bobby."

"You too boy." Bobby left the room, and the boys, and headed to his own bedroom.

While he didn't particularly enjoy bloody late-night visitors with cops on their tales, he had to admit it made his life exciting. And as much as he would grouse to them over it, he would secretly admit to himself, that honestly, he wouldn't have it any other way.

Good? Bad? In-between? Let me know!