Proud Mother Note 1: if you follow Matt Cohen on Twitter, my son Joshua is 'the coolest kid ever.'

Proud Mother Note 2: if you were at Chicago when Misha and Jared were answering questions, Joshua is the boy Jared brought on stage to 'high five'.

Proud Mother Note 3: and still, no one at the convention knows my name!

If Dean ever gets married, I hope he treats his wife at least as good as he treats his car. I mean, hopefully better, but you take what you can get.

So, we're Day Five post 'I got my brother back from hell.' Day Three post 'did we mention the seals are breaking and it's not a good thing?'. And Day Ground Zero of 'my baby neeeeeds me.' So, we're parked at a do-it-yourself car wash place and since - since the Ipod - I'm only allowed to ride in the car and not touch it, I hike across the parking lot the sub shop to get us lunch while Dean washes and waxes and vacuums and purrs over his baby so much that I might not be able to eat lunch anyway.

When I get back, Dean's in the back seat elbow deep in automotive BCS. I'm pretty sure he's pretty much forgiven me for the Ipod and I never spent any time in the back seat while he wasn't here, so I don't expect him to find anything to hold against me.

But as I walk past the open back door, he barks at me,

"Hey - hey - hey. When were you going to tell me about this?"

And when I look, he's holding a crumpled piece of one of my old shirts. It's stiff and brown and completely saturated with dried blood that sprinkles off when he gestures with it. He sounds pissed.

"I - I'm sorry." I stammer out. "I thought that I got all those."

"Not the rag." He barks at me again, the 'you idiot' unspoken but implied. "When were you going to tell me you'd been hurt this bad?"

He doesn't know. He doesn't realize.

"That's not my blood." I have to tell him and it's a whisper that comes out.

"Whose then?"

No, I don't think I'll be eating lunch today.

"It's yours."

He looks confused then puzzled then he realizes what I'm talking about and he shoves the rag into the plastic shopping bag that's serving him for garbage. He goes back to digging in the seat which means the moment is over, so I go have a seat on the park bench parked near the door of the car wash bay.

I'd wrapped Dean in a tarp because there was no other way to keep his guts from dragging along as I moved him from the house to the car. Blood covered the back seat and when I'd used up our only two towels and all the paper napkins from the glove box, I ripped one of my shirts into halves and quarters and tried in vain to stop the blood while Bobby kept trying to pull me out of the car and I kept trying to not throw up and neither of us got anywhere with our trying.

I can still feel the blood and taste the bile and hear the silence and the only thing that keeps me from going sit in the car just to be near Dean is when he throws out his bag of garbage and pushes a few more quarters into the car vac to give the car another once over. We could be here until nightfall. Which, all things considered, is fine by me. I have my brother back, whole and sound and alive. Nightfall wouldn't be long enough.

But he's done while there's still five or six hours of daylight left. He wraps up the hoses and puts away the wax and chamois and all his other little tools of automotive seduction. Lastly he picks up the cooler and our lunch and tucks them into the trunk. Then he heads over to the park bench and sets himself down next to me.

There's no talking. We just sit and we both look at Dean's gleaming marvel of machinery.

"She looks great." I finally say.

"Yes, she does." Dean answers, ever the proud father. But he adds, "You took good care of her, too. Y'know - Ipod excepted."

I laugh but shake my head.

"It wasn't the same car without you."

And we sit in silence a little while longer. The Winchester-appropriate amount of time for deeply felt and therefore awkward comments to dissipate.

"Ready to find somewhere to eat lunch?" Dean asks when enough time has passed.


We both walk to the car and we both stop and look into the back seat. I wonder if we're both looking at the same thing. I'm seeing death and despair and crushing loss.

Dean's looking at something else though.

"I'm glad it wasn't your blood." He says. Then he gets in the car and I get in the car and we drive somewhere to eat our lunch.

The end.