No, I do not own Supernatural or any of its characters. I have changed things a little bit. Sam has already had his headache visions. Everything else, just read to figure out. I hope you enjoy. Thanks for reading and reviewing. :-)
Sam Winchester had never liked fire. He knew it was from the trauma he had experienced as an infant. He was only a few months old when the fire that changed his life first happened. His mother had been killed, but not by the heat. Her body had been consumed by the flames, but she had been killed before then. A demon. The yellow-eyed demon his family had been searching for almost his entire life. He had actively destroyed the family Sam knew, drove his father into a hunter's life, and enlisted two young boys into an army, all in one night. It wasn't fair. It didn't make sense, but that's what happened.
Now he lay on his bed. Moments before the thick, cool liquid of his girlfriend's blood had dripped down upon his face. His first and more logical thought was that they had a leaky roof. When he opened his eyes and found Jessica's impaled, bloody body above him, a scream caught in his throat. As he looked up at her unseeing eyes, she was engulfed in flames, but Sam was frozen to the bed.
"JESS! NO!" he screamed, desperate to stretch his 6'4 frame just a little higher so he could reach the woman he loved. Screaming and climbing on top of the bed, he tried to grab her from the ceiling. But the flames came too fast and the room seemed to crumble around him.
Flaming boards and debris fell around Sam, making it hard to see and breathe. But he had to get Jess. He had to get her out! He struggled and reached for her burning corpse and was met only by fire on his hands. Screaming in pain, he shot back, only bumping into the wall that chose to dissolve from behind him. Falling to the floor, he shielded his face with his arms, crying and hyperventilating.
This couldn't be happening! Sam's worst fear was being back here, trapped, suffocating, dying. How could this be happening? He must have fallen asleep. That had to be all. When his back hit the bed, he must have drifted into a horrible nightmare. This couldn't be happening. Not again!
Sam felt the heat blanket him and surround him. Smothered by the smoke and flames, he coughed as he tried to catch a breath. His tears added to the heat on his face as the moisture cut through the smoke dirtying his face. He tried to get up but couldn't catch a breath to do it. Crawling on his hands and knees, he knew he had to get out. But he wasn't going anywhere without Jessica.
"Jess! I'm coming!" Sam tried to hurry toward her, but she was so far away. As his body became deprived of life-giving oxygen, he began to slow. His heavy lids seemed impossible to keep open and he fought to remain conscious.
Dean never would have guessed anything was wrong if his stomach hadn't alerted him of hunger. He was wondering if any restaurants would still be open, as he pulled up to a local diner. Quickly his hunger was forgotten, because the lights started flickering and his heart turned cold. He immediately made an illegal u-turn. He had no way of knowing for sure that Sam was the one in danger, but if there was any chance, he wanted to be there to save his only brother.
As he pulled up to the apartment building, he could already see the smoke piling out of the building, in the corner that Sam and Jess lived. For a split second he considered dialing 9-1-1, but ran inside instead. Making a phone call wasn't enough doing for Dean. He couldn't stand by and watch his brother burn up in flames. He had to do something.
"SAM!" Dean shouted as soon as he got into the main entrance. His brother was upstairs and farther away still, but he was desperate and Sam was in trouble. As he charged up the steps, he quickly kicked in Sam's door.
"SAM!" Dean screamed again, terrified to see the whole apartment covered in an orange glow. He ran through the rooms, searching for his brother. He traced the fire back to the bedroom and found his brother there, nearly passed out on the floor.
"Sammy!" Dean shouted as he ran to his brother. Sam's pant leg had caught fire and a line of flames seemed to be traveling straight for Sam's head. Sam lay face down on the floor until Dean quickly lifted him into a sitting position.
"Sam, come on! We gotta get out of here." Dean shouted as he used his bare hand to beat the flames off Sam's pants.
"No, Jess. Gotta... save Jess."
Dean's eyes widened as he realized Sam's girlfriend was still inside. He was about to go for the girl when he followed Sam's eyes to the ceiling. Dean's stomach dropped and turned into a hunk of ice. He'd been here before. He remembered this all too well.
"No, Sam. We have to go. Come on," Dean stood and dragged his brother up with him. He slapped his brother across the face, begging Sam to snap out of it. Dean threw his jacket off and held if over Sam's mouth.
When Sam remained unresponsive, Dean hoisted Sam upon his shoulders. Sam's tall frame made it difficult for him to lift but he was a big brother, so he had all the strength he needed. Whenever Sam was in danger, it changed everything.
"Dean, no!" Sam's hoarse voice screamed. He coughed and choked, weakly clutching Dean's shirt in his hands.
"We have to go, Sam. Now!" He dragged his brother outside. The stairs were difficult for Dean to maneuver, especially while trying to keep his balance as he held his brother's weight up, as well as his own. It was all he could do not to pitch forward.
With a swift kick to the door, they were outside. Dean took deep breaths as he got out into the open air. He slowly sank to his knees and laid Sam on the ground. His brother's chest was barely rising.
"Sam? Come on, buddy. Talk to me!" Dean demanded as he lightly patted Sam's smoky face.
Sam managed to cough and wince in pain. He struggled to open his eyes and rolled over on his stomach.
Sam put his hands underneath him and tried to get himself up. "Jess... have to... save... Jess."
Dean shook his head in despair. "I'm sorry, Sam. You can't save her now."
Knowing he couldn't stand, Sam crawled on his injured hands and knees for a couple inches, holding onto fistfuls of grass to pull himself along. Soon Dean pushed him back and Sam fell back against the ground, limp.
"Sammy? Come on. Sam!" Dean turned Sam over and found his brother had lost consciousness. He leaned down to check his brother's breathing. Though shallow, Sam still drew in air.
Dean looked up as he heard the sirens in the distance. He was thankful that someone else had called. He was a bit preoccupied. Dean checked his brother's leg and found the skin red and agitated. Judging by the angry burns and the shallow breathing coming from Sam's lungs, Dean knew a trip to the hospital would be in order. His stomach clenched at the idea. He hadn't been in one for years, even with all the hunts he'd been on the majority of his life. He and his father had become expert doctors. They could treat just about any injury. But this was different. This was Sammy. He wasn't like them. They didn't care about scars or bruises. They were strong and could handle anything. While Sam was as tough as the next guy, he also wasn't as rough around the edges as John and Dean. And no matter how tough Sam got, Dean would always see him as weak and fragile, someone he had to protect. He was an older brother; he couldn't help it. And Sam's health came first. He didn't trust it to just anyone, even just himself. He needed professional help, and Dean would see that Sam got it.
Upon arrival, the EMTs quickly swooped in and took Sammy to the back of the ambulance. Dean couldn't help but watch and wince as he saw his brother's too long of a frame didn't even fit on all of the stretcher. He got in the ambulance and sat next to his brother and watched as they placed an oxygen mask over his face. Dean shivered at the sight. It made Sam look ten years younger and all the more vulnerable. It made his protective instincts go haywire and feel a desperate need to shoot something or someone.
Dean reached out and cradled his brother's literally ashen face in his palm. Sam's pain-filled face immediately eased at Dean's touch. Dean had to smile at how he could still calm his brother, though they had been separated for two years now.
After hours of pacing in the waiting room and threatening doctors and nurses, Dean was allowed to go back to see Sam. Sam was going to be just fine. He had second degree burns that needed watched and smoke inhalation. Because of his injuries, the doctors wanted to keep him overnight for observation. After Dean gave him the death glare, the doctor agreed that Dean could spend the night as well.
Dean watched his brother grimly. Sam would be fine physically. But what about Jessica? His girlfriend was dead. While Dean hadn't been around long enough to see how close the couple was, he could see see the devotion in his brother's eyes. And judging by Sam's devastation in the burning apartment, Dean knew that Jess was not just any girl. Dean had just been teasing, but Sam had said that she may be the one he wanted to marry. But now Jessica was dead, suffering the same fate as their mother had 22 years ago.
Dean sat next to his brother's bed and studied the young face there. Sam didn't deserve this. Any of it. He was a good kid, always had been. He was the only one of them who had managed to get away. So he should have been safe. That's what Dean had always convinced himself. If Sam wasn't a part of this life, then this life couldn't touch him. But he should have known. The world he and his father lived in touched more corners of the earth than even Dean knew. So of course Sam would be affected. Dean just wished he could have been there to protect him sooner.
Dean barely so much as blinked as he sat with Sam. Every hitched breath or turn, he was at attention, ready to help or soothe. Sam had hardly moved, but Dean didn't want to miss a second so he'd be ready at a moment's notice to swoop in and help.
Around 4 a.m. Sam began to stir. Dean watched patiently, expecting it to be just another turn in his sleep. But this time was different. Sam's face scrunched in pain. His hands clenched the blankets underneath him as his back arched up in pain. Dean stood quickly and eased his brother down against the bed.
"Easy, tiger. I'm right here. You're okay," Dean soothed, only to see the terror in Sam's body heighten.
Dean cringed at the name. This was going to be hard to save Sam from. Sam's heart was too far away for Dean to protect. He couldn't keep his brother from loving people. It was as natural as breathing to kind-hearted Sammy. But Dean knew that was what made his brother who he was. Dean couldn't change that about Sam, even to protect him from getting hurt.
"Sam. Sh. It's okay. You're just dreaming." Dean could have bit his tongue off. He wasn't just dreaming. This was real. Sure, Sam was safe now. But Jess wasn't. Jess really had burned up. She was gone. No matter how many times Sam woke up, that would always be a reality.
Sam flopped around on the bed, his tears turning into pained cries as he reached for something that wasn't there.
"Sammy. Come on, now. It's okay. Just wake up for me. Dean's here. I've got you." Dean shook Sam a little harder, trying to wake his dreaming brother.
"Jess... JESS!" Sam strained his voice, screaming for the woman he loved.
"What's going on?" a nurse asked as she came rushing in.
"He's having a bad dream. What does it look like?" Dean barked. The nurse gave him a sour look, and he just glared back. "I can handle this. Get the hell out of here!"
The nurse looked at Sam and then back to Dean. She was smart enough to recognize that Dean was more than capable of taking care of something like a nightmare. It wasn't medical anyway.
"Sam. SAM! Goddamnit, wake up!" Dean shook his brother roughly, anger disguising his fear. Sam whimpered, shuttered visibly, and woke with a start and scream.
Dean felt immediately guilty for shaking his brother so hard. Sam groaned at the pain and fear rolled off him in waves. Dean held a hand out, trying not to look threatening. He came closer cautiously, like he would a strange dog.
"It's okay, Sammy. I'm right here. You're fine. You got burned, so you're in the hospital, but you're going to be just fine."
With a flinch, Sam's memory returned. It wasn't another nightmare. He had been dreaming about his girlfriend's death for days. Now all the sudden it wasn't a dream anymore. This was reality.
Dean saw the pain wash over Sam's face and he moved in quickly. He sat gently next to his brother and wrapped Sam in his arms. Sam remained stiff and tense, having gone years without so much as a hand shake from his brother. This touch was foreign. He remained a rigid form in Dean's arms, unwilling to crack and break. He was still a Winchester, even if he had been away from his family for years. It didn't matter. You could lose the woman you loved. You could watch her die. You could feel guilty and responsible for her death. But none of that mattered, because even with all that, you still weren't allowed to break... not if you wanted to remain a Winchester.
When Sam remained unrelenting, Dean released him from his hold. He wondered if he was losing his touch as a big brother. He could remember when Sam used to come to him for every small heartache or pain. Now Sam wouldn't so much as hug him back. Had time really separated them that much?
"Sam... I'm so sorry. I promise you. We're going to find that son of a bitch responsible for this. I swear, we'll make him pay."
Sam remained silent, just staring blankly Dean didn't even know if Sam could hear him. He hadn't spoken a word after waking, had shown no signs of recognition. He didn't know what was going through his little brother's head but he knew it was never a safe place for Sam to be.
"Sammy? Come back to me now, kiddo."
Sam shivered but remained silent until haunted eyes turned to Dean. "You already have the one responsible. So do what you want to make me pay. I deserve it."
Sam turned away from Dean, staring blankly at the wall. Jessica was dead. The woman he loved was dead. His soul mate was dead. There was nothing else to do but die along with her.
"Sam! You know what did that to her and it wasn't you. It wasn't you. You hear me?"
Sam looked Dean in the eyes and Dean thought for a minute he would need to splash holy water on his brother. "I did nothing to stop it. I knew this was going to happen, and I left her anyway. I didn't warn her, I didn't call her, I didn't stay and protect her. I may as well have pinned her to that ceiling because I was the one who sealed her fate. Because I didn't do anything, and I knew it was going to happen."
Dean was confused. Sam knew? What did he mean he knew? "What are you talking about, Sam? How could you have known?"
Sam's face was stony and it scared Dean. "I dreamt of it. Seven times. I should have known what it meant. I tried to pretend it was nothing, just a nightmare. I tried so hard to be normal, to completely forget about our lives as hunters. I knew it was something more. And these headaches..."
"What? Headaches? What kind of headaches?"
Sam shook his head. "It's probably nothing. I just get these killer headaches. Migraines probably."
Dean didn't like the sound of that. Not at all. "Sam, even being a hunter, you had know way of knowing it would happen for sure. It was a dream. I would have thought that was it too. And if you had told Jess, she would have spent her last days in fear or thinking you were crazy. Even if you had stayed, warned her, done something, it wouldn't have stopped her from dying. Dad was there when Mom died. He couldn't do anything. He's a demon, Sam. They don't waste their time. You couldn't have been there every second, and even if you had, you could have gotten killed too."
Sam shook his head. "If only."
Dean's heart dropped to his feet. The pain behind his brother's words killed him. He could feel the anguish in his brother's heart, the pain he felt. His brother's pain was Dean's. It was the life of brothers, even brothers who'd spent time apart for far too long.
"Sammy, get some sleep. I know this is hard right now, but I'm right here. I'm not going anywhere. I'll be here to get you through this."
Sam nodded but didn't lay down. Finally Dean physically pushed Sam down on the bed and covered him up. Sam eventually closed his eyes and slept fitfully. He could feel the pain from the burns and he welcomed it. He deserved it and more. He should have died with Jessica that night.
When Sam was asleep, Dean got out his cell phone. He called his dad, who had lost contact with him for weeks. Dean figured he was fine, hunting as usual. But this was an emergency, and John needed to know.
"Hey, Dad, it's Dean. Listen, something happened. Sam's girlfriend died. It's the demon... You know what I'm talking about. Same exact death as Mom. So, please, if you're out there, you need to come here. He's close. He was just here, a few hours ago. Sam needs us right now."
As Dean shut his cell phone closed, he felt his anger rise. John had been ignoring his calls for weeks. Dean would know if John were hurt. He could feel it in his bones when his loved ones were hurt. He had felt it that night when his mom died. It had woken him up before he heard his father's screams. He had gone for Sam, thinking it was his little brother who was hurt, when he found the nursery in flames and suddenly little Sammy was thrust in his hands and he was running out of the house. His dad had come later, but as the house was consumed in flames, his mother went with it.
So that left just that John was ignoring him. Dean had tried every phone number his father had, had even tried reaching some of their fellow hunters in case they'd seen John. But to no avail. John was not wanting to be found. And if he didn't want to be found, no one could find him. Not even Dean.
Dean reached out to stroke his brother's hair back. Sam was wore out. The kid looked rough. His skin was marred with singe marks from the flames. His hands were wrapped in gauze, as well as his lower left leg where Dean had beaten out the flames. Dean's own hands had been burned but he paid it no mind. Sam looked especially weak in the hospital gown. To top that off he was asleep and he looked younger. The image pulled at Dean's heart and made him want to do anything to protect his brother. But this time there was nothing on the outside that he could fight, nothing he could kill, shoot, salt and burn. Dean didn't know what to do to protect Sam from himself. He sure as hell couldn't fight his own brother. But he'd be there to help pick up the pieces. He'd make sure Sam made it through.
Sam was released the next morning and Dean took him to the motel he had checked into several days before. He wasn't sure what his brother wanted to do next. There was Jess' funeral to arrange, but then what? Did Sam want to go back to school? Or was he coming with him?
Sam was laying on the bed furthest from the door and Dean was cleaning out his arsenal.
"Damn it!" Sam suddenly yelled, and Dean thought it was another nightmare. But suddenly Sam's face scrunched up in pain and he went from the bed to the floor with a loud thud.
"Sam! What's going on?" Dean rushed around the corner of the bed and grabbed at his brother's hands, which were both holding his head, as if to keep it form falling open.
Sam started to cry out and he grabbed onto Dean's shirt. "My head... Dean!"
"I'm right here." Dean cradled his brother's face in his hands but Sam's eyes would not open. His brother doubled over in pain, his arms shooting out for something to grab onto to release the pain. Dean grabbed his brother's outstretched hands, holding tightly to them.
"I'm right here, Sam. It's okay. Just breathe."
As suddenly as the pain had started, it was gone. Sam's hold released on his brother's hands. Whimpering from the fading pain, Sam tried to breathe deeply. His eyes opened to see Dean's concerned gaze upon him.
"You okay?" Dean asked, concern all over him.
"I'm okay. Do we have any pain killers?"
Dean hurried for his first aid kit and took out a few pills. He handed them to his brother and got out a bottle of water from the refrigerator. Sam took it gratefully. He stood on shaky legs and got back up on the bed. Groaning, he rubbed his throbbing temples.
Dean continued to watch his brother. "What the hell was that?"
"I told you I'd been getting headaches."
"That's what you were talking about?" Dean exclaimed.
Sam nodded. "Dean, don't go anywhere tonight. Let's just stay in for a while, okay?"
Dean didn't understand why his brother wanted that, but if that's what Sam wanted, that's what Sam would get. "Okay, Sam. Whatever you say."
Sam's heart thudded in his chest. He hoped his brother took him seriously. He laid back down and closed his eyes, exhausted from the sudden "headache."
What he didn't tell his brother was that this wasn't just any ordinary headache. It was a vision of sorts. Images flashed across his eyes and they always came through. He'd been having these visions about Jessica's death. He told Dean it was dreams, but he'd never dreamt of it. Just had visions. But it was a lot easier to explain and made a lot more sense if he said he was dreaming about it.
Dean watched as his brother fell asleep. Dean knew his brother hadn't eaten in at least 24 hours, so he decided he needed to go get something. His brother wanted him to stay i, but he'd only be gone a few minutes. There was a diner right around the corner, the same one he'd almost gone to the night before.
Dean was walking along the road and he suddenly felt like he was being followed. He was starting to cross the road when he was tackled to the ground. Shots were suddenly fired and the car that past them got its windows shot out. It was right where Dean would have been if he'd kept on walking.
A cop came out of seemingly no where and cuffed the man with the gun. Dean saw it happen as traffic screeched to a stop around him. He turned onto his back and found the weight on top of him was none other than his little brother.
Sam was shaking, near tears. "I told you not to go out tonight."
Sam stood and ran back to the motel, visibly shaken.
Dean stood a little slower, but he followed close behind. When he went into the motel, he found his brother with his face buried in his hands.
"Sammy? You okay?" Dean asked, afraid the tackle had hurt his brother's already beaten and burned body.
Sam looked up at Dean, tears streaming down his face. "I told you not to go! Why did you do it, Dean?"
Dean felt guilty, but he didn't quite understand why. "I'm sorry, Sam. I was just going out to get us some dinner, then I was going to be right back." Dean paused as a thought hit him. "Wait. Did you know that was going to happen?"
Sam looked embarrassed. "I didn't know. I just... I saw it happen before it did."
Dean was confused. "Did you have another dream?"
"Sort of. I... I have visions."
Now Dean was freaked. "Visions? What do you mean?"
Sam sighed, speaking through his tears and fears. "When I have headaches, I see things. I'd been having them for about a week and every time I saw Jess' death. It was so painful it hurt. And now that I know that it's real, I knew when I had a headache earlier that it was going to happen. I saw that bullet hitting you, then the car. It was awful. You didn't make it."
Sam shuddered at the thought. Dean moved and sat next to his brother on the bed, extending an arm across his brother's shoulders.
Sam turned and looked at his brother seriously. "Dean... I can't do it. I can't lose you too. I just lost Jess. Please... Don't make me lose you too."
Sam was suddenly in Dean's arm and instinctively, Dean held his brother tightly. "I'm not going anywhere, Sammy. I promise. I'm not going to leave you. You saved me. I'm here now. I'm not going anywhere."
Sam broke out in sobs. His whole body shook as pain overwhelmed him. His life was change forever. The love of his life was gone and his heart could hardly stand it. He didn't know what made him keep breathing. It was killing him. The thought of losing his brother on top of all that was enough to drive him into the ground. He couldn't do it. He couldn't lost the two most important people in his life. Losing one was killing him enough. It wasn't easy. But if he had Dean, he knew he'd make it. His brother was good at that. Dean had always been there to pull him through. It didn't matter how much time changed them, didn't matter how much space had separated them. They were just brothers. That never changed. Nothing could change that. They had too much of a history together. Dean was always going to be his big brother.
"I'm here, Sammy. We're going to get through this. I promise."
Sam knew it was true. They would always get through things together. Just like they always had.
"I know, Dean. It hurts so much."
Dean knew it would. It would hurt for a while. Especially with Sam's soft heart. He hadn't hardened himself like Dean and John had. Sam had a long way to go before he felt okay again. But Dean would see it through. He knew how to do it. Had done it a million times. When it came to his Sammy, he knew how to make everything okay. He always did.
Sam fell asleep in his brother's arms, the only place he felt safe anymore. Here he knew Dean was safe, knew that everything was okay. He could make it. No matter what. As long as Dean was by his side.
And Dean would be by his side. As long as Sam needed him, Dean would be there. He wasn't letting Sam go this time. He would stay with Sam, protect him. It was his job as a big brother. And he was damn good at it.