A/N: I've decided that Cas actually DID get Dean to St. Mary's Convent at the end of Season 4, in time to save Sam and kill Ruby. Raphael killed Lilith and double-locked the Cage so it could never ever be opened again. (Zachariah got assigned latrine duty.) On the way from Ilchester to Bobby's, Dean drives through Lisa's hometown (no, it's not on the direct route, but I like Lisa and Ben.) This story is what happens after that. Told from Ben's POV.
Mom and me were out buying groceries and were headed back home again when we drove past a gas station and I saw Dean's car at the pumps.
"Hey, Mom! Look! Dean!"
"He's there. Over there. Getting gas."
"Are you sure?" She asked, but she signaled a turn at the corner we never usually turned at.
"I saw his car! I think I saw Sam too, putting the gas in."
"Sam? You didn't see Dean?"
It'd been a couple of years since we saw Sam and Dean, since they saved us from that whatever the hell - heck - that thing was they saved us from. But I knew my Mom still thought about Dean, and it sounded like she still cared about him.
"If Sam's there, Dean's gotta be nearby." I said.
We turned the corner and pulled through the parking lot of the strip mall and came up behind the gas station. There was the Impala, and there was Sam at the back of it, putting in gas.. Mom parked and I was out the door and I called over to him.
He didn't answer at first, and it wasn't because I didn't say it loud enough.
"Maybe he doesn't remember us." Mom said, but I knew that wasn't true.
"Mom. Dean said that Sam remembers every single thing from since he was like three years old. C'mon."
I walked right up to him, he was bent down trying to get the gas cap screwed back on.
He looked at me then, and man - I've seen Halloween masks that didn't look as pasty and not-real as his face looked right then. He looked like maybe he didn't remember us at first, but then I could tell he got it.
"Ben. Hey. Lisa. What're you guys doing here?"
"Sam - are you okay?" Mom asked instead of answering him. Instead of telling him that - duh - we lived here. She was freaked, I could hear it in her voice. She thought Sam looked as bad as I thought he looked.
"Can't get the - I just - I can't seem to get the gas cap back on." He laughed and it was really not funny the way he laughed, and he held up the gas cap. "The gas tank keeps moving."
"I can do it." I told him and took the cap out of his hand and put it back on, just as Mom asked him,
"Sam? Where's Dean?"
And just as Mom asked that, I heard a really deep, kinda pissed, "~HEY~" and then Dean was standing with us. He was carrying a plastic bag full of stuff and I think he must've thought we were just people bothering Sam. But then he got a good look and his face did that thing that adults' faces do when they see somebody they really really like, looking happy and embarrassed and 'I shaved this morning, didn't I?' but he turned to Sam before he talked to us and he got a pissed look again.
"I told you to stay in the car."
"I was putting the gas in."
"I told you I was gonna put the gas in when I came back out."
"Dean, I can put gas in the car."
"Yeah, well right now you're going to put your ass in the car. I got the stuff for you."
"Dean - ."
So Sam huffed, and said 'excuse me' to Mom and me and Dean opened the passenger door and Sam sat in the seat. Dean crouched down next to him and pulled stuff from the plastic bag. He turned the top on a bottle of Gatorade and handed it to Sam, then he opened a little bottle that looked like a medicine bottle and dumped out a couple of tablets and handed those over to Sam too. I guess Sam must've taken them because Dean said,
"Okay, we'll give those a chance to work. Okay? Now, stay in the car."
Sam answered with a word I'm not allowed to say but Sam saying it made Dean smile and he stood up then and came back to Mom and me.
"Hey." He said. He had that goofy adult face on his face again when he looked at Mom.
"Hey." And Mom had that same kind of look on her face, for a minute, and then she asked, "Is Sam okay?"
"He's a little under the weather."
"Under the weather? He looks like he got hit by Katrina."
They were keeping their voices down like they didn't want Sam to hear them talking about him.
"He's just-." Dean showed Mom the bottle, I think it said Dramamine. "We're trying to get back to our friend Bobby's. He can recover there."
"Where does he live? Around here?"
"No, Sioux Falls."
Dean said it like it was around here.
"That's over twelve hours away." Mom said. "And recover from what?"
Just as she asked that, a clump of napkins fell out of the front door. When Sam didn't reach to pick them up, and Dean I guess didn't notice them, I went to grab them and hand them back to Sam. At least I figured he'd want them because he had a couple in his hand anyway, and he was sweating like a faucet and was probably using them to wipe the sweat out of his eyes.
"Thanks." He said when he took the napkins out of my hand.
"So - you're sick?" I couldn't think of anything else to say to him.
"It's okay, I'm not contagious." He said, but I wasn'teven thinking that. "It's just - something I drank." He smiled, or tried to, but I didn't like the way it looked on him. "So - you're okay? You and your Mom? You've been okay?"
"Yeah, we're okay." It was weird to have somebody who looked so sick asking me if I was okay. "I think Mom is trying to get Dean to let you guys stay overnight."
At least, that's what their conversation sounded like behind me.
"That's not a good idea." Sam said.
"You said you're not contagious."
"No. No it's not that. It's just - this can - this can cause delirium. That wouldn't be safe for you and your Mom. You're better off away from me."
I turned back to Mom and Dean and heard Mom whispering to Dean,
"And it's safer for you that Sam hallucinate in a cheap motel with paper thin walls than in a bed in my house?"
"Safer for you." Dean told her, but Mom gave him that face she gives me when she's totally not kidding about something, not blinking, not smiling, just staring until I give in or burst into flames. It always works on me.
It worked on Dean too I guess. He huffed a breath out his nose and came back to Sam and crouched down next to him.
"Lisa wants us to stay at her place tonight. What do you think?"
"I don't think we should." Sam looked at Dean then at me then at Mom. Then he looked back at Dean again. "But I haven't been making very good decisions lately."
Dean stared at Sam a few seconds but Sam only was staring at the napkins in his hand.
"If we have to pull out, we will. Okay? We'll give it a try."
Sam nodded without looking up and Dean patted his shoulder and I think gave it a squeeze and stood up and shut the car door.
"Thanks, Lisa. We'll follow you there."
On the way home, I kept asking Mom what was wrong with Sam and what did Dean say and how long were they were going to stay and could Sam stay in my room and all Mom kept saying was ,
Ugh. Lame answer.
So Mom pulled in the driveway and Dean pulled in behind us and I was out the door again. Dean got out of the Impala and opened the door for Sam and waited for him to get out I guess. Only it seemed a lot like Sam didn't know that. He stayed in the seat in the car and when Dean leaned down to say something to him, Sam turned away from him.
"I'll go in and get things ready." Mom said and Dean nodded. She grabbed a couple of plastic bags out of the car and carried them into the house. I went to Dean.
"Can I help?" I asked him.
"Sure." Dean said, smiling and using that much-too-happy tone Mom uses when I double-cross myself . "You can help your Mom carry the groceries into the house."
I stared at him but he only kept smiling, so I knew I wouldn't win.
to be continued