A/N: Ok, first of all, I am so sorry for this. Seriously, I feel dirty.
BEWARE BEWARE BEWARE!
Someone (I'm so sorry, I can't remember who. I tried to look it up but my computer's doing funny things. Was it you, Cainchan?) said during the Stale Beer and Cigarette Smoke Saga that they thought I could do an actual rape story and my stupid muse decided to take it as a challenge. There's something wrong with me, really there is.
Warnings: Uh, the obvious. Rape, though nothing terribly graphic. Swearing and violence. No happy ending. Please don't be scarred for life. And review, if it's not too much to ask. Please?
This is the worst thing thats ever happened to him. Worse than when Dean Nair'd his shampoo (even though it felt like the end of the world at the time), worse than when he crashed the Impala when he was sixteen (Dean yelled at him for an hour straight and Dad gave him extra training for a month), worse than when he was possessed (and this is kind of like that, almost entirely, but he's decided to be grateful that he wasn't really 'there' for all of that.)
This time he's awake for everything, shoved into a tiny box in the back of his mind where he can watch and feel but no amount of screaming or fighting will set him free. He knows because it's been a week, then it's been a week and three days, a week and six days, two weeks and five days, and he can't get out. There's no sign of Dean and no weakening of his metaphorical cage and he's starting to wish that Chet would just kill him already.
At first he thought that it was a random selection, bad luck, wrong place, wrong time but on day four, in the dark of Chet's bedroom in the midst of the creeping silence that stalks him like a predator, Chet had whispered that he'd been watching him for days (how had they not noticed?), since he rolled into town "with that guy. He your boyfriend?" Sam answers (because he has to) that Dean's his brother and Chet looks at him like he's the sick one.
Chet's a big man who always smells strongly of tobacco and onions and the combination makes Sam feel sick. His house smells like smoke and mould and hints at the ghastly contents of the basement. He's half a head taller than Sam and twice as wide, with thinning black hair and dark skin. Sam thinks he's in his mid-forties, there's always crud under the nails at the end of his stubby fingers and he doesn't brush his teeth. He's not what Dean would call 'the sharpest tool in the shed', which makes Sam wonder how on earth the creep managed to figure out how to perform what had to have been some fairly complicated dark magick.
Chet works three days a week. Sam's not sure where or what he does but those are his favourite days, they're the best days he has, even though Chet always orders him to stay in the bedroom and only move if he has to go to the bathroom. Chet's not there and that's enough.
Depending on where Chet places him, Sam can look at the orange wallpaper, or the cream ceiling, or the drawn brown curtains. Chet never leaves the TV or radio on and Sam listens to the sparse traffic, hoping to catch the throaty growl of the Impala. Once or twice he manages to convince himself that he's heard it but when it's gone he's never sure if it was there in the first place and Dean never enters his prison.
At first, in the early days, Sam spent the long empty hours pushing back against the box. He'd focus his will on simply shifting a finger, trying to form words, turn his head, anything. Now he just sits and relishes the time alone and doesn't bother giving himself a headache.
He's been cursed, he knows this much. He's seen Chet's make-shift altar, complete with stubs of candles, assorted herbs you definitely can't find at the supermarket, and a chunk of hair that Sam knows is his own. Sometimes he wonders irrelevantly if the missing hair is noticeable and wishes he could see a mirror or raise his hands to check, but often Sam's not wondering anything, just trying to will his mind into believing that he doesn't exist.
Three weeks and one day and Sam's in bed. He hates being in bed, hates the bed, hates Chet, hates watching and feeling himself do things and having things done to him. He can't even close his eyes without permission.
It's late and Sam's trying to focus on the single star he can see through the gap in the curtains. It dips in and out of view with the movement of the cheap mattress, his fingers tangled in the sheets, his breath coming in short gasps. Sam watches the star and doesn't think about anything.
Chet finishes and Sam can feel the older man's naked flesh pressing hard against his bare back, shuddering and sweating on him, breathing heavy in his ear and Sam wants to sob but he doesn't even have enough control to do that.
"Boy, I think you're my favourite," Chet sighs in his smoker-gravel voice.
Sam wishes he could crawl out of his skin. He wishes Chet would just get sick of him and, God help him, find someone else to be his favourite.
Chet's hand is in his hair, stroking almost gently, and if he tries really really hard he can almost pretend that it's Dean, comforting him and trying to make it better. Dean's never needed words, he shows affection by bumping shoulders when he thinks Sam needs support, a well-timed joke and a slap on the back when he thinks Sam needs to smile. The hair fondling is saved for extreme moments when Sam is sick or in pain and it always knocks him back to childhood memories of Dean taking care of him, to before Dean got too old to tell Sam that he loved him.
Yeah, Sam can almost pretend that it's Dean but he can't make the memories of warm soup and peanut butter M&M's (Dean's fix-all) wash over him because he's not being comforted, he's being invaded and Dean's fingers aren't as short and stubby as Chet's. Sam hates the man all the more for ruining these memories and he wants him to stop, stop, please, stop but now Chet's pressing his face into the back of Sam's neck and inhaling long and deep.
"Mmmm," Chet moans out, and if Sam's body would've obeyed he thinks he would've thrown up.
Sam watches the star peeping through the gap and he supposes he could try to think of something inspiring and cliché, like, 'All the darkness in the world can't extinguish the light of a single candle' or 'Don't fear the shadows because they mean there's light nearby' but he knows it's all bullshit (people should fear the shadows and there's no light in his prison) and it's not going to help him. The only thing that will help him is Dean and he's not here. Star light, star bright, first star I see tonight, wish I may, wish I might...
"It must be time for a shower," Chet continues, and Sam's tired and hurting and he just wants to go to sleep so it will all go away and maybe never wake up so it will all stay away but his hands are already pushing the sheets off and he's getting up, feeling the cool air on his bare skin, and Chet's guiding him to the bathroom with a hand burning at the small of his back and Sam wishes he could somehow drown himself under the shower head.
Three weeks and three days and Sam's sitting cross-legged in the basement. It smells like death and where he is he can see two if the five corpses he knows are down here.
One is a girl – he thinks it's Melanie, if he remembers the Missing Persons report properly. It's been a while since he and Dean went over them together. Long dark hair that partially obscures her rotting face, the white blouse she was wearing the last time she was seen is open and she's bra-less. Sam feels humiliated and angry for her, the way he feels for himself, and wishes that she hadn't died at the hands of this psychopath (wishes none of this was happening), left unburied to fester until he can barely recognise her as the smiling 18 year old in her graduation photo. Sam thinks she'd make a good vengeful spirit.
The other body is too far gone for Sam to be able to tell who it once was. He thinks it might have been male. There are no clothes to offer a clue and most of the flesh has been eaten away by insects and rats. It must have been here for months. Maybe it's the first one to go missing, Thomas. Which means that somewhere in the depths behind him there must be Kelly, Francis and Michael, all aged 18 to 25, all vanished without a trace over the last year, all rotting together in Chet's airless basement.
Sam can't figure out whether he dreads joining them or if he's looking forward to it. As it is, Chet's not ready to part with him yet.
Chet stands before his altar, lighting candles. Sam smells some kind of herbs but it's hard to tell what they are with the stench of decay seeping into his pores, oozing down his throat.
"I'm sorry we have to go through this again," Chet says conversationally over his shoulder, not sounding sorry at all. "The effects wear off. One day I'll figure out how to make it permanent."
Sam doesn't move or speak because he can't. Chet turns away from the altar and takes the few steps to Sam's side. Melanie's empty eyes stare at him and Sam hears a sharp slice before Chet's moving back to the altar with a chunk of hair clenched in his fist. He knows it's stupid and it shouldn't matter as much as it does compared to everything else Chet does but it's his hair and Chet has no right to touch it. If his body could react he's sure tears would be smarting in his eyes and it's just one more thing that highlights how helpless he is.
Chet's chanting something, not in Latin, and he's butchering whatever language it is, the words chunky and ugly on his tongue. One of the candles flares suddenly and Chet whirls, approaches Sam with a mortar in hand and uses the pestle to flick some concoction on his face.
Next thing Sam knows he's writhing on the damp basement floor, blinding white light giving colour to the agony in his head. It feels like hands have ripped his skull apart and are now clawing at his brain and Sam has time to wonder if the damage can ever be repaired, time to feel something wet slithering over his upper lip and down his chin, time to feel his head bash against the concrete again and again as he convulses, before the hot white light disappears and everything goes black.
Things are hazy for a while but Sam still manages to count off the days. At first he was counting down to Dean but now he thinks he might be counting down to death. Three weeks and six days.
He wonders if Chet kept the others this long and if they wished for death too, if they had family searching for them as frantically as Dean must be searching for him. He thinks that if he could talk to Dean maybe he'd tell him that he's already too late.
Sam sits on Chet's bed and stares at the wallpaper.
He almost doesn't want Dean to find him, doesn't know if he can handle the shame of Dean knowing what's happened to him. He just wants to fade out of existence, but he wants Dean to be there to stroke his hair as he goes. He doesn't want to die alone and he doesn't want to die with Chet. He wonders if Chet's into necrophilia.
The front door slams and if Sam could crease his face in confusion he would. He's sure Chet's not supposed to be home yet. He only left a few hours ago.
Hurried footsteps stomp through the house until they reach the bedroom doorway.
"Hold your breath!" Chet's voice demands.
Sam's lungs instantly freeze, mid-inhale. In his prison Sam panics. Maybe Chet's sick of him now. Maybe he's found someone new. Sam doesn't want to die like this, holding his own breath until he suffocates.
The footsteps stomp over to him.
"You're mine!" Chet spits furiously, his red face inches from Sam's, "Mine!"
Sam can't look away. He sits where he is and doesn't breathe. He can feel his lungs beginning to strain, his throat constricting.
Chet pulls away and starts pacing the room, in and out of Sam's line of sight, his hands clenched into fists. He reminds Sam of an agitated bear, and Sam's seen an agitated bear so he should know. His chest begins to ache.
"No one's taking you away from me, I don't care what they do. You're mine! I got you and no one's taking you away!"
I'm dying and I'm thinking about bears, Sam marvels dizzily to himself, wanting to laugh, and then, after a moment, Chet's ranting sinks in and Sam realises, Dean!
It must be Dean. He must be closing in and that's what's got Chet so rattled and Sam immediately takes back everything he thought about not wanting Dean to find him. He wants Dean so bad it's like a snake coiled around the bottom of his stomach, squeezing tight.
"You're mine," Chet says again, and he's stopped in front of Sam now, eyeing him up calculatingly and Sam's head hurts from the lack of oxygen, there are white spots dancing in his vision and greys beginning to encroach at the edges. Even the panic's beginning to ebb away.
This isn't fair. He can't die when Dean's so close – Dean must be close – but Chet's just watching and the grey is turning black...
"Breathe," Chet orders flatly. "And don't you ever forget who owns you."
Four weeks and two days.
Sam's on his knees in front of Chet in the living room when he hears the front door cave in, splintering wood and groaning hinges.
Chet pushes him away and is on his feet in an instant, tucking himself in and zipping up his jeans, standing in front of Sam like an animal protecting it's young but Sam knows there's no affection or love involved in this. He's simply Chet's property and Chet wont give him up without a fight.
Despite this, the little cage in Sam's head fills with hope. It must be Dean because who else would it be? Last he knew the police had no leads and he sincerely doubts that they could figure it out before his brother.
He sees the gun first, leading the way into the room at the end of Dean's – oh God, it's really Dean, he's really here – outstretched arms, the sleeves of Dean's leather jacket. A few more steps and Dean's fully visible just inside the archway and Sam wants to melt in relief. He's insanely glad that Chet told him to dress in his boxers and t-shirt today – he hasn't seen his jeans or jacket since day one but some clothes are better than no clothes.
Dean's not looking at him. His brother's eyes are hard and on fire and fixed on Chet, the gun aimed straight at his chest.
"Chet." Dean manages to make his name sound like the foulest word in history, cocks his head slightly, the illusion of calm although Sam can see the rage below the surface. "Been taking things that don't belong to you."
Chet glances down at Sam's kneeling figure and Dean takes the opportunity to flick his eyes briefly over Sam too, a quick glance that Sam knows is looking for injuries, a small meeting of the eyes that offers reassurance. There's no time for anything else, not if Dean wants to stay focussed.
'Never take your eyes off of the monster,' John's voice says in Sam's head. He thinks Dean hears it too, and Chet's the worst monster Sam's ever faced.
"Eye's down," Chet says, and immediately Sam's looking at carpet, which no no no, he needs to see what's going on, needs to see Dean to know that he's still there.
"Finders keepers," Chet sneers over his head, "I ain't giving him back, I already got him all trained up."
Dean huffs a humourless laugh, "Trained? Yeah, right. Reverse the spell, dickwad."
Sam can feel Chet's surprise that Dean knows about the magick and almost wants to smile. That's right, asshole, not dealing with amateurs here, and you're gonna be sorry...
Chet pulls himself together and crouches down. Sam can feel his breath fluttering the hair by his ear. A finger crawls down the side of his face.
"Now why would I do a thing like that? I like this one."
"Don't touch him!" For a second Dean's voice has lost the controlled edge – Sam thinks he sounds more like his big brother than a hunter – but then there's the sound of a rough inhale and it's back. "You reverse the spell now or I'll kill you, nice and slow."
Chet laughs mockingly, "Funny, that's just how your brother likes it."
Dean growls, actually growls, and Sam wants to sink through the floor. He hears the chi-chunk of Dean's gun being cocked.
Chet doesn't seem fazed, standing back to his full height, "Now, don't be like that. He likes it, don't you, Sammy?" Fingers in his hair. "Go on, tell your brother."
The words are in his head and out his mouth without any input from him. This is without a doubt the worst month of his life.
"I like it when Chet fucks me." His voice is dull. The words aren't his and it's so wrong to hear his voice speaking Chet's lies. He's disgusted with himself.
"And you want to stay."
"I want to stay."
"Stop that," Dean says. It sounds like his teeth are clenched.
Chet stands. Sam feels Chet's arm brush past his shoulder and he knows by the sudden block of ice in his gut that Chet's reaching for the gun he keeps in his waistband. Sam knows it's there, knows it's loaded, because he's seen it. Sometimes Chet likes to play with it while he plays with Sam. They're both just objects to him.
He can't warn Dean. There's no way, not when he can't even look at him. All he can do is kneel there and stare at the carpet.
There's a solid thunk from behind him and then Chet's falling, like a tree in slow motion – Sam half expects Dean to call 'timber!' - and he hits the carpet face first.
Sam watches Dean's boots thud closer until they're standing in front of Chet. There's a pause and then three gunshots ring out one after the other.
Sam sees Chet's body jerk three times, hears Bobby's voice saying 'Christ, Dean,' and has enough time to realise that he's moving without Chet ordering him to before the carpet rushes up to meet him.
Sam wakes up slowly and for the longest time he just stares at the ceiling. He knows where he is, remembers what happened, knows that Chet's gone, and eventually he raises his arm and marvels at how he can open and close his fingers by himself for the first time in four weeks.
His skin doesn't feel quite right, like it doesn't quite fit, like it's not quite his any more. Maybe it's not.
Sam drops his arm and rolls his head on the pillow. Dean's sitting on the opposite bed, half-empty bottle of whiskey on the night-stand. He looks devastated. There are lines in his face Sam doesn't remember being there a month ago.
Sam wonders vaguely what he looks like, if his time with Chet has changed him as much on the outside as it has on the inside. He reaches up to feel for his missing hair.
Dean's head drops into his hands. "Sammy," he says again, "Oh God, Sam."
Sam looks back at the ceiling, fingering a short tuft of hair.
"Chet's dead?" he asks, because he needs to hear Dean say it. It's the first time he's spoken his own words in weeks.
"Yeah." Dean clears his throat but his voice stays rough and choked, "I wasn't going to let him live after... He might have been human but he was still a monster."
Sam brings his arm back down to the sheets.
"Your hair's not that bad," Dean almost sounds like he's pleading, like he doesn't know what to say. "You can barely tell..."
"Did you look in the basement?" Sam can hear the hollowness in his own voice. He sees Dean's hands clench in the sheets from the corner of his eye.
"Bobby did. All five of those missing kids were-"
"I know," Sam says. "Chet showed me."
Dean's never needed words. He shows affection by bumping shoulders when he thinks Sam needs support, a well-timed joke and a slap on the back when he thinks Sam needs to smile. Now Dean's hand ghosts over his fringe and instead of being comforted Sam jerks away like he's been burned, violently enough that he almost tumbles off the bed, catches himself at the last minute and shoves himself up against the headboard.
"Don't touch me."
"Don't fucking touch me!"
Dean's never needed words and he's a jerk and he never listens to Sam and Sam suddenly finds himself crushed against Dean's chest, his wrists caught in Dean's hands, and doesn't Dean realise that he's not the same little brother he was before? And if he's not Sammy any more then maybe he doesn't deserve a Dean. Part of him is screaming that Dean needs to stop touching him before he catches something, before Sam infects him with something dark and dirty and suffocating but no matter how much he struggles Dean wont let him go.
He doesn't even know he's sobbing until Dean starts rocking him back and forth. He's got Sam's face pressed against his collarbone, his chin resting on Sam's head and Sam realises he must have said something along the lines of what he was thinking because Dean's saying, "No, Sammy, God, no, Sammy, you're still my little brother. It's gonna be okay, I swear. I'll make it okay. I'll fix this, Sammy. I'll fix this."
Sam doesn't think Dean can. This time it's too much, there are too many pieces broken or missing and they can't be put back together. He thinks he would've been better off in Chet's basement.