Hello everyone! Thanks soooo much for coming back. Thank you for all the lovely, wonderful comments and reviews. Thanks for taking time out of your life to read this story. The response to this has been so very overwhelming that I am speechless. Thank you, each of you, for making it a pleasure to write and such a rewarding experience.

I had thought this would be the last chapter but I wanted to put the ask out to you lovely folks. So, let it stand as it is or have one more chapter? Your opinions do matter immensely so feel free to send me any thoughts/ideas you have on the subject.


Pure and raw panic.

Sam is forgotten as his mind veers off into survival instinct mode.

The need to get free.

The need to get away.

Before she comes back.

Before she turns him into…

Before he starts to ache for it in his bones again…

…before he craves the taste of it in his mouth, the feel of it on his skin.

His eyes drift to his arm. His pock marked, junkie-fied arm. Angry red marks from the injection sights meet his blurring gaze.

Blood. Damn, fricken, evil demon blood. It surged through his veins.

Maybe it still does.

A memory pours into his brain before he can filter it. A callous smile. A syringe. Warmth and euphoria as the devil juice entered his veins and he let out a groan of contentment.

No. Not him. Not this. Anything but this. No more. Please, stop.

He pulls and tugs and thrashes as far as his body will allow.

Tied down. That's bad. That's how it started.

Immobile.

Weak.

Unable to fight. Unable to move.

Surrounded by a fog of what he knows he should reject but that he won't be strong enough to fend off once he gets a taste.

A shadowy figure approaches and he clenches his eyes shut, tears of desperation and genuine fear escaping from under his lids.

He shakes at the touch on his arm. He groans and fights and struggles and…

"Dean? Relax."

Sam? No, he can't be here. She'll get to him and… with his… he'll…

He opens his eyes but keeps his gaze away from his brother's face. The shame he feels for what he allowed himself to do and how he let himself lose control makes his heart thump wildly in his chest.

He grounds out the words through clenched teeth.

"Get away Sam! You can't be here… get away before she comes back! She… she stuck me with… and if she sees you… she's… you're the one she wants… don't let her… you need to leave! NOW!"

Sam doesn't leave but increases the slight pressure on his arm. The big oaf never listens.

"Sammy… please…"

"It's over now, she's dead. Remember? Just look around Dean. We are both safe. At the motel. We got away. Dean, we got away. Remember? She's dead, she can't hurt you anymore."

Another flash of memory, her lifeless body stretched out floating in a sea of her own blood, her dead stare boring right into him.

Yeah, okay. Right, bitch is dead. Dead.

"Do you hear me Dean? She isn't coming back."

He takes in the surroundings then, the room adorned in some damn awful flowery wallpaper.

Motel. Right.

"Dean, you with me?"

He hears Sam but if she's gone why is he still tied up here, like a pincushion just waiting for the next needle to….

His eyes flicker to his bound appendages and he can hear Sam sigh. It's a weary, almost defeated sound.

"Sorry man, I had to, didn't have a choice, you were so out of it and… you were seeing things… Shit, I didn't want you to wake up like this but… this was the only way I could make sure you'd be safe."

His eyes finally focus on his younger brother and it becomes painfully obvious as he scans his appearance. He takes it all in. The bloodied nose. The cut lip. The patch job on his shoulder. The tired and beaten up vibes that ooze out from him tell him in spades what Sam would never say in words.

He lies there, tied up, because that was also the only way for Sam to keep himself safe. From his own brother.

He feels nauseous and can't stand to keep his eyes on his brother's face. He squeezes them shut once more and tries to hide away in the pillow, tries to sink down so deep into the material that it may just swallow him whole. God, he hopes it does.

His heart is heavy and tight with remorse and guilt and shame and regret. He hurt him. He hurt Sam.

"M'sorry… S'mmm… sorry… I hurt you… I… I'm sorry…"

Sam's hands are suddenly there, on the sides of his face, and he sucks in a shallow breath, his emotions teetering right on the edge of his control in response to the gentle touch he feels but knows he doesn't deserve.

And yet, somehow, he can't stop himself from sighing slightly at the comfort he feels in his brother's hands. They speak a silent language full of trust, love, and understanding.

"There is nothing to be sorry for Dean. None of this was your fault. Please bro, just look at me okay?"

Sam's soothing voice coaxes him out of the darkness to peer into those eyes, the ones full of compassion and love.

"See? I'm fine. I'm okay. You on the other hand look like shit, and I bet you feel that way too. Look, I'm going to untie you okay? But… just, you need to lie still for a bit alright? You've been through a lot and you need to give your body time to heal…"

Sam starts to untie one of his wrists and a myriad of emotions surge through him. Relief, that he will soon have his freedom and no longer be confined. Fear, that he will do something else to hurt his brother. And that idea? Well, when Sammy's health is involved, it trumps his own needs hands down.

"Wait…"

Sam stops what he is doing and looks to him, his eyebrow raised in question.

"No… don't. What if… don't wanna hurt… "

"You won't hurt me Dean. Besides, I'm pretty sure I could take you right now. Jerk."

Sam lets out a small chuckle and the sound warms his heart. That one little word tells him his little brother is okay.

Jerk. Bitch. Just two little words, but they hold so much meaning and have for so long. They are like their secret code; their way of checking in on each other, to let each other know that even with all the shit they've been through they are still okay, still alive and kicking inside.

But right now, for the life of him, as much as he wants to, he can't make the sound, he can't bring himself to utter that one little word that he knows Sam is waiting to hear.

He can't do it because as the fog starts to lift more and more, as fragments from his time as a demon's plaything come into his head fast and furious, the last thing he feels is okay. And he sure as hell ain't fine. Not even close. Not this time.

And he doesn't have the strength left in him to even make an effort to hide it.

"I heard you Sam."

"What?"

Something gives way. A weakness that he fought so hard to never show bubbles up. The emotions of it rise up through him and his breath hitches, unable to keep out the staggered memories that weave their poison through his mind.

The knowledge of what he became, of what he craved, of what he desired cracking his wall and leaving him defenseless.

"Heard you, talking to Bobby."

"Dean…"

"God Sammy… I messed up. I don't… I can't… I can see myself, see what I did… all I wanted… I needed to have it, like I wasn't even in control of one piece of myself. She won. That fricken bitch won and I… I wanted it so bad Sammy… "

He's dizzy. He feels hot and sick and disgusted and ashamed and guilty and… He can't breathe. He's suffocating in the whirlwind of emotions that he's churned up around them.

Sam moves in closer.

"Dean? Listen to my voice."

"and I… I saw Dad… he was burning… because of me… flesh falling of his bones… he… and you… my fault… it's just…"

Too dizzy. Can't breathe. Too much. Can't…

"Dean! Listen to me. Look at me. Please."

"…should have been stronger… should have fought… but… wanted… the taste… the rush… the way… it…"

"Dean! LOOK AT ME!"

He stops...

Do it… for Sammy… the least he can do is… listen to Sam for once… after all he's done…

He lifts his gaze and tries… but Sammy… he's blurry… fading… can't breathe… can't… but… Sam is there… with him… still there… listen to him…

"Good. Now, you need to take a deep breath for me okay? I need for you to calm down. Can you do that for me?"

Can't. Can't get enough air. No. Can't. He shakes his head and gets slammed with another wave of dizziness.

His left wrist is quickly untied and he watches through his ever increasing haze as Sam places it on his chest and holds it there.

"Yes, you can Dean. Just follow me. Now, breathe."

He feels the sensation of his hand rise with the intake of air his brother takes.

"Deep breath in."

Okay. In.

"Now let the air out slowly."

Out. His hand falls back with Sam's chest.

"That's it. Another. In. And out. You're doing great. Keep going."

He blinks as his vision starts to clear, as his breathing evens out and he finds a rhythm of his own, his hand still being held firmly against his brother's chest.

"Okay, that's good. Just concentrate on your breathing and relax. I've got you and I won't let go."

His eyes start to droop as he focuses on the rise and fall of his brother's breathing, as he matches his own in tandem. In and out. In and out. He gets lost in it, the warmth of his brother's hand on his, the life he feels enter and exit Sam's body. He's alive and he's there. Sam's okay.

It's calming. Peaceful.

His eyes go wide as he jerks himself back into wakefulness.

"It's okay dude, you can close your eyes. You can sleep."

His eyes lower and the sound of his brother's words slowly start to fade as he feels the pull of sleep descend on him.

Maybe he is gonna be fine after all.

A small smirk graces his lips.

"Only if you're sure. Bitch."


TBC?... Thanks as always for stopping by.