So I'm finally back. This time with a story based on a prompt from newspapertaxis over on OhSam! The complete prompt will be posted after the last chapter, as it is very detailed and I don't want to spoil the story. Hope you will like it and let me know what you think. Hugs, Vonnie
Sometimes You Just Have To Trust
Disclaimer – Supernatural doesn't belong to me, I'm just having fun here!
He really didn't feel so hot right now. His head felt like it was submerged in water and his vision was going from black to white and back with nothing much in between. What he really wanted right now was to just give in to the pull and pass out on the spot, yet he knew this was a luxury he couldn't allow himself, as the price would be for it would be too high, with his brother slumped in the seat beside him, wheezing like an ox after pulling a tank out of the ditch. If he could just get his eyes to function like he wanted them to, this really wouldn't be such a problem, but it was sort of difficult to drive a car, when you had no idea which side of the road you were on or even if you even still were on the road at all.
Not being able to make out that road was actually the only motivation Dean Winchester had for pulling over, at least he hoped he pulled over and wasn't standing somewhere in the middle of said road. Reaching beside himself, he felt more than he actually saw the water bottle he deposited there earlier. He unscrewed it and lifting it to his lips, sucking down a large gulp of its contents, when a coughing sound to his side made him start and drop the bottle. Instinctively he grabbed for it, trying to prevent it from falling. As it turned out, not a smart move, as the water his brain seemed to swim in, now started to stir and violently turned it over and over. Struggling to hold on to a semblance of consciousness, the hunter passed out before he knew it was happening. His body pitching to the side, the last thing he heard was a moan from his brother as his head landed on the other man's injured leg.
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Really, it was supposed to be an easy hunt, but like always nothing ever went down easy, not if your last name started with Win and ended with chester. That was not only a fact, it was more like a law and by now both of them should be used to it and plan for it. Yet one could always hold out hope that this time would be different and without hope one couldn't really go on living. Sure, this time neither of them had been completely innocent on how this hunt went down. It wasn't unusual for Dean to run in halfcocked, especially when lives were on the line, but Sam was usually the one who stopped his brother and made sure they were thoroughly prepared. Not this time though, as both of them had rushed in, desperately attempting to save the life of a little girl.
Getting thrown around by the angry spirit of a known wife beater and pedophile had turned out not to be a lot of fun for Dean. The ghost had kept his little daughter captive in the very place he had died, a hunting cabin deep inside the woods. By the time the Winchesters arrived it had been too late, five year old Katie had been dead for several days. Her spirit yet had still been there and not even in death had the poor excuse for a father left her alone. So while Sam had hurried to salt and burn the body of the child, Dean had tried to keep the evil entity away from her and in the process been not only thrown across the one room cabin, but also had found his right side impaled by an aluminum spear that had conveniently happened to be part of the decoration.
It had been up to Sam to haphazardly patch is brother up to prevent him from bleeding to death and dig up the bones of Thomas Rafferty, which thanks to the hurry his former wife had been in after killing him in self defense, had been buried only deep enough to prevent animals to get to them. After taking his daughter away from him, it had initially seemed like Rafferty had gone with her, yet both boys knew that it was very likely just a ruse. Their instincts had once again proven true, as right when the younger Winchester had uncovered the decaying corpse, the spirit had shown itself and first deposited Dean, who had been standing watch, against a tree, then had thrown Sam towards the house, using one of the windows as a bulls eye.
Thinking the seemingly unconscious older brother was no threat, the spirit had gone after Sam, who although dazed and injured, had still been able to get to his feet. What exactly had happened inside the cabin wasn't clear, but it had been only due to Dean's quick thinking, the hunter only had the wind knocked out of him and had been able to sprinkle salt on the corpse, before dousing it with exhilarant and throwing a lit match on it. The screech coming from the cabin had been bone chilling and adrenaline had given the concerned older man the strength to ignore his own injuries and run in to help his brother.
He had found the younger man lying halfway in the hearth with a fire place poker sticking out of his thigh, out cold. Although cast iron, the poker had a wooden handle, the reason why the spirit had been able to use it.
After patching Sam up, not an easy task, as the poker had been thrown with lots of force and had struck bone and in return being patched up by the younger hunter, after he had regained consciousness, Dean had allowed for an hour's rest, before heading back to the car. The three hour walk had turned into almost twelve, not the least thanks to the chest infection the taller Winchester had been carrying around for days. By the time they had finally gotten to the Impala, Sam had been congested and wheezing, his coughs painful to listen to and the rattle now clearly audible from his chest had done nothing to placate his brother.
Still, the young man had held up as well as he had been able too, using the forked branch of a tree as a crutch to keep the weight of his injured leg and trying to support his also injured sibling on the other. If Dean wouldn't have felt so poorly himself, he might have found humor in Sam's poor attempt to help him along, just as he was trying to do the same thing for his brother. In the end it had really not been clear, who had been supporting the other more, or if they had supported one another just well enough to somehow make it to their destination. Later the older man hadn't even been able to say, how they had gotten there and how he had started the car and driven off.
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When Dean came too, he had no idea how long he had been out or what their exact location was. The first thing he noticed was that his head was lying in his brother's lap, Sam looking down on him, his eyes shining with fever. It took him a moment to comprehend that seeing his brother's face actually meant he was able to see more clearly again.
"You 'kay?" The question was interrupted by a painful sounding barking sound shaking the younger man's body.
"Been better" Dean couldn't hold back a gasp as he tried to sit up, a move that also caused some of the dizziness to return.
What concerned him more though, was the moan coming from his brother, which was once again interlaced with coughing. Allowing the spinning sensation to dissipate, he righted himself completely and took in Sam's appearance. The younger hunter was leaning stiffly against the back of the seat, obviously trying to remain as upright as possible to help his ill lungs to expand as much as possible. The cuts and bruises his face bore from being thrown through a window did nothing to disguise his flushed cheeks nor did they cover up the paleness of the underlying skin. His hair, wet with perspiration, was plastered to his face and his usually hazel eyes were bright with fever.
"You don't look so hot!"
"You look…" There was another coughing spell, almost taking his breath away, before Sam could push out the rest of the sentence, "...in the mirror lately?"
Dean supposed he didn't look much better, still right now it didn't matter he needed to get his brother somewhere safe, somewhere where he could take care of him. It would be a lot easier to do so, if he had an idea where they were located at this very moment. The thought crossing his mind suddenly almost made him slap his head. Pulling his phone out of his pocket, he played with it for a moment, before pulling up the GPS feature. It was definitely a sign of the blood loss and possible concussion that he didn't think of it earlier. It took a moment before he was able to read their position, but when he did, he knew there was only one place close enough to go to. If he would have to choose, this wouldn't be where he would go, yet he was sure that even after everything that happened, they wouldn't be denied help there, at least not initially, until he could get them somewhere else.
A look over to Sam, who was leaning against the passenger side window, passed out now, but still rattling and wheezing with each breath, gave him the boost he needed to make up his mind. His brother needed help as fast as possible.
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The place looked almost abandoned when the Impala pulled up in front of it. Not really surprising at four o'clock in the morning, when most people where still sleeping. The last hour of the drive had cost Dean almost everything he had left. He knew for a while that his wound had started bleeding again, not heavily, just seeping enough to deplete him of more of the precious life juice than he could spare.
Taking a breath, he peeled himself out of the driver's seat and went around to the passenger side. Several times he had to hold on to the car to prevent himself from falling, as dizziness and the headache from hell weren't exactly a great mix. Leaning against his baby, he opened the door, listening for just a moment to his brother struggling to pull air into his lungs. Finally he reached down; his body still braced again the frame and put his hands on Sam's shoulders.
"I'm gonna help you stand up now." He explained.
"Don't need help!" The younger man wheezed out, before he was shaken by another coughing fit that made him double over and left him gasping for breath.
"Right, just humor me!" Even though he wasn't feeling well himself, Dean couldn't keep a smirk off his face, "You ready?"
A nod was the only affirmation he received. Helping his brother turn in the seat until his feet were settled on solid ground, he changed his grip to the other man's arms and pulled him forward and up, making sure he wouldn't hit his head on the roof. The sudden change in position left the younger man lightheaded and his legs buckled. Tightening his grip to keep his brother upright, Dean almost went down with him and it was only because he was once again leaning against the Impala that he was able to keep both of them upright. However, he couldn't suppress a moan, when he jarred his injured side.
"You with me?" He asked concerned after regaining his balance, when Sam's head lolled loosely against his shoulder.
There was a pause, before the other hunter straightened up slightly, "Yeah" He rasped, "You…?"
"Peachy, let's do this before we both grow roots!" Dean reached back into the car and pulled out the makeshift crutch, handing it to his brother. There was no way they would make it without Sam using the extra support for his leg.
Not bothering with closing the door, the two men started the painful journey towards the house. Ever so slowly they closed the distance between the car and the building. Both of them were beyond exhausted, hurting and it took all their concentration to stay upright.
About halfway there, the makeshift crutch fell cluttering to the ground. Startled, Dean wasn't fast enough to tighten his grip around his brother, before the younger man followed it. Denying his initial instinct to help Sam, the older sibling continued on, knowing he wouldn't be able to get back up, if he went down now. As his vision grayed, he continued to stumble forward, his arm firmly wrapped around his middle and his hand applying pressure to his injured flank. He felt like he was walking through heavy mud, as it got harder and harder to lift his feet and the distance didn't seem to decrease. Finally reaching the porch, he stumbled up the two steps and only due to the short distance to the door fell against it instead of flat on his face, the crash serving as the knock he wouldn't have had the strength to complete.
He still leaned there, when the lights inside came on and the cocking of a shotgun could be heard. It was only because of the speed, with which the person opening the door jumped back that said person wasn't taken down by the now unconscious body of one Dean Winchester. As it was, the shotgun fell to the floor with a thump and the woman, who had held it, went down to her knees.
"Help me turn him over!" She demanded from the younger woman behind her, who was also holding a gun.
Turning the fallen man over, a gasp escaped both of them, "Dean…"
It was the older one, who first recovered, "Jo, get me some water."
Waiting for her daughter to move, Ellen Harvelle started to check the unconscious young man injuries. She didn't bother checking the obvious, by now crusted over laceration on his forehead; instead she gently moved her hands through his hair, lifting up his head until she found two areas that were not just swollen but also moist with blood. Letting her eyes glide down his body, she noticed the hand pressed against his side. Lifting it away, she let out a curse.
"Shit, what did you get into this time?"
She took the glass her daughter held out to her and carefully lifted it to the young man's almost bloodless lips. A small groan came from the hunter, but otherwise he showed no response.
"Dammit…" Turning her head, she called towards the back, "Ash, get your butt out here, we need help."
A grumble came from the room bordering the bar, but it didn't take long for the mullet headed genius to show himself. As soon as he spotted the hunter sprawled out on the floor, he increased his pace.
"Let's get him to the guest room." Ellen ordered, "Jo, call Doc White, this looks pretty deep and I think he might need a transfusion."
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Ten minutes later Dean Winchester was settled into the 'guest room', a small room in the back of the house with two beds, which had seen more than just a few tired or injured hunters spent time there. Ellen had put a pressure dressing on the wound on his side. When she went into the bordering bathroom to wash her hands, Jo returned.
"Doc will be here in half an hour." She said, "How is he?"
"Still out, he hasn't moved an inch on his own. Wonder how he even made it here on…" She was going to say 'on his own', but never finished, as a thought struck her, "Jo, stay here!"
Without further explanation she walked away, calling out for Ash and turning on the outside light on her way out of the house.
"I should have known!" She chastised herself, when she spotted a tall figure lying in a heap on the ground.
Running the last few steps, she went down to the ground. Hearing the wheezing respiration coming from Sam, she decided to wait with any further assessment and instead waved at Ash, who by now was standing right behind her.
"Let's get him inside; it's too dark to see anything out here anyway!"
Together they were able to hoist the tall Winchester up and drag him into the house. Calling for Jo to uncover the second bed, they settle the young man onto it. Immediately checking for injuries, Ellen took in the lacerations all over his face and neck then saw the blood on his jeans.
"Jo, I need to clean him up, you know what I need. "
Getting no response, she turned to see her daughter lean against the wall, her face pale and her eyes staring at the figure in the bed with an expression of horror.
"Look, I understand how you feel, but we don't have time for this now. So pull yourself together and get me what I need." Seeing the other woman leave the room, she turned to Ash, who was still standing in the doorway, "Help me get his cloth off."
"Aren't you glad I decided not to leave until tonight?" The computer whiz wondered.
"Just get over here, now!"
Knowing when he needed to shut up, he followed her orders without another word.
"Damn, he is burning up!" The bar owner cursed, "Guess it shouldn't really be a surprise with the way his breathing sounds." Seeing that Jo returned, she continued, "Set the water down here and give me the towel and wash cloth. His leg started bleeding again, when we pulled his pants down. Put a pressure dressing on it, while I clean the rest of him. The wound is too large it will have to wait for Doc."
She dunked the cloth into the water and expressing the excess, she started to wipe the blood of his face. Repeating the procedure on his left arm, she looked up, noting that the younger woman hadn't moved an inch.
"Look, you can leave after we are done here, but right now I need your help, so unless you want him to bleed to death, get a pressure dressing on that leg."
Like earlier, Jo started to move, following her mother's orders, silently leaving the room after she finished.
"I could've done that, you know!" Ash said.
"I know, but I need her after you're gone tonight. Don't think either one of them is going to be okay by then." Ellen said, never looking up from her task.
"You need to quit waking me up in the middle of the night, man my age needs his beauty sleep, you know?"
"Doc" Putting the washcloth down, she stood to greet the newcomer.
The tall, gray-haired doctor smiled at her before asking, "So what trouble did you get yourself into this time?"
"Not sure what exactly happened, neither of them has been able to talk since they arrived, but they're both pretty banged up." She looked at the two unconscious men, occupying her guest room then pointing at Dean, she said, "I think you should start with this one, I don't think my dressing stopped the bleeding on his side completely. Ash can help you if you need anything, while I continue cleaning the other one up."
"He doesn't sound good; don't need my stethoscope to hear he has at least a bronchitis, maybe worse." The doctor noted, before moving over to Dean's bed. Experience told that a few minutes more or less wouldn't make a big difference in a respiratory infection.
It took him almost an hour to clean and suture the deep wound on the older Winchester's side. Throughout the procedure the injured man moaned a few times, once even almost opened his eyes, but never woke completely. After checking for other injuries and putting several stitches in the laceration on his forehead, the old physician stood up and walked into the bathroom.
After washing up, he went to stand beside Ellen, "Nice job!" He told her, looking at the clean line of sutures she put into one of the deeper cuts on Sam's chest."
"Thanks, it's not like I haven't done it a hundred times before." She smiled then turned serious again, "Looks like he got thrown through a window or something, I took quite a few chards of glass out of him. Most of the cuts didn't need stitching, except of this on and one on his right arm."
"I know the other one is Dean Winchester, seen him a few years ago, when I patched his dad up, but who is he?"
Ellen stood and let the doctor have her seat on the bed, before she answered his question, "Sam, he is his younger brother."
"Oh, didn't know there was another Winchester." The old man responded then went on to check the ill young man's chest. Finishing with the front, he looked up, "Would you help me sit him up, so I can listen to the back of his lungs?"
He stood; allowing Ellen to sit again then helped her pull the limp body to a sitting position. Shaken by a coughing attack, the young hunter's eyes opened without warning. Although glassed over and not tracking, there was fear written in them, as their owner struggled to draw in the air his body so desperately strived for.
Seeing Sam's lips turn blue, it was only due to Doc White's calm demeanor that the tough Road House owner didn't lose her own composure. It seemed like forever, before the coughing slowed and finally settled. Although still cyanotic, some of the color returned to the young man's lips. His eyes open; he suddenly slumped and before Ellen could hold him up, his body fell forward, his head ending up on her shoulder. Her first instinct was to push him back, when she felt his cheek brush against her neck and through the rattle that was his breathing, she barely made out the "D'n" coming from him, sounding like a plea for help.
Seeing the questioning look from her friend, she just nodded at him, "Just do your thing, we are okay here." Somehow unable to keep her hand from running through his moist hair, she suddenly found herself soothingly whisper, "Sssssh, you're going to be fine!" with a tenderness she didn't know she possesses anymore.
"Definitely bronchitis," the doc interrupted her ministration, "sounds like he isn't far from pneumonia, can't tell exactly without x-rays, not that it matters, treatment isn't that different. Do you have any more pillows around? We need to keep his upper body elevated, it will help his breathing."
"Yeah, would you mind getting them yourself? Just go upstairs, Jo can help you."
After the physician disappeared, she adjusted her position slightly to take the ache out of her lower back.
This time she almost missed the partial word, "You're fine, Doc will fix you right up!" She encouraged, once again stroking his dark hair.
Her hear t almost broke, when she realized the young man was at least somewhat with it and worried about his brother, not like she initially had though himself.
"Dean is fine; Doc took care of him already. He is sleeping now!"
There was a sigh, before the tall body relaxed, almost taking her down, as he lost the fight for awareness.