He Ain't Heavy
Tommy whined, favouring one hind leg - the damn thing'd almost been broken last night, and he had been far too tired to shift back last night, hurt too bad…
He hushed himself before he could wake his mother - she'd be pissed somethin' fierce if she heard him makin' noise over something so 'pathetic'. After all, as she never tired of reminding him, she'd 'done it for years, til she couldn't no more'.
The shed door creaked open quietly, and Tommy wondered briefly if he'd made too much noise after all. But no, if he'd done that they would have thrown the door open, not eased it back like tha- Sam?
"God, Tommy!" Sam muttered, seeing the bloody pile of fur that he was reduced to. Sam knelt beside him on the rust-coloured concrete and laid a gentle hand on his shoulder.
Tommy sucked in a breath, but his brother was more careful than either of his parents had been - in years, or possibly ever, his mind was too fuzzy to remember - and it didn't hurt much. What the hell was Sam doing here, anyway?
Sam petted him kindly and murmured to him in a low voice. "I'm getting you out of here, right now, Tommy, all right?"
Tommy snorted weakly. That'd be the day - he couldn't even move yet, he was so stiff from the new injuries he'd gotten last night.
"I mean it!" Sam whispered, voice fierce despite its low volume. "I swear, if I have to carry you out, you are not lying here for another minute longer than you have to - too bad off to shift?" he asked, shifting topics easily.
Tommy couldn't exactly answer, so he just lay there, panting shallowly. Sam nodded decisively. "Right then. Sorry 'bout this."
Sam slid strong arms around and under Tommy's thickly-muscled and bloody body. For once, Tommy was grateful that he wasn't any heavier in his favoured form.
Tommy found himself wondering, briefly, what he might have chosen had his parents - his mother - not insisted on such a strong, fighting-form breed. He might even have chosen something more like his brother. He couldn't quite see himself as a collie, but…
Then again… He reconsidered, knowing as he did that he was merely attempting to distract himself from the discomfort of being carried, no matter how gently. If it would make his brother happy - happy enough to let him stay… - he probably could get used to the idea of wearing the form of such a silky, delicate breed.
Sam tucked Tommy into the passenger seat of his truck - the door of which he had thoughtfully left open - wrapped him gently in a blanket, and closed the door with a small click before ducking around the vehicle.
As Sam climbed behind the wheel, Tommy noticed that his chest and arms were smeared with blood - Tommy's own, of course, and already half-congealed. Sam winced slightly at the sound of the engine turning over and catching roughly - and noisily.
That shirt's had it, far's he's concerned, I'd bet. Tommy thought idly. The light plaid would likely bear blood-stains no matter how it was washed.
Thankfully though, there was no sound or other sign of movement to show that those inside were waking as they pulled away.
Tommy sighed, allowing himself to relax a little as the truck sped up, heading back to Sam's place, he expected.
Sam glanced down at his little brother, noting with some relief that Tommy appeared to be falling asleep. He murmured something soft and reassuring before focusing back on the road, trying to keep his temper.
It failed, his hands tightening involuntarily around the steering wheel until it hurt, and he bit back a growl at the thought of what the boy's own parents - god, their mother - had put him through.
The title was suggested by my beta, and comes from the song, 'He Ain't Heavy' by The Hollies. I had never heard the song before, but I think some of the lyrics actually fit - in any case, I liked the title, obviously. The idea for the story itself hit me after watching 'I Got a Right to Sing the Blues' - I'm sure it will be totally AU after the next episode, but here we are. It was both difficult and interesting working on Tommy's characterisation, and I hope it worked well...