Title : The Tree of Knowledge

Prompt: Sam/Dean, Adam's perfectly fine with it. It's his brothers who are bothered by his not being bothered. Written for ladyknightanka's birthday.

Thanks to graylor for the beta.

Adam's living with Sam and Dean now, traveling with them in the Impala, hunting and scamming banks with credit card fraud. His mom would be so proud. And it's good, mostly. He's learning about hunting, when to use the salt, or the iron bar, or the mix of holy herbs. He's learning exorcisms and how to tell a skinwalker from a werewolf (the time pattern gives them away every time). He's also learning to know his brothers, what their life was like, what makes them tick, and it's good too. It feels like, finally, he's not alone anymore with a great ball of incandescent fury controlling his body. Not that Michael was a bad guy, more like not so big on sharing, which especially annoys Adam since it was his body, damn it.

Adam learns something major about Sam and Dean an evening in February, when they're driving through Montana. Sam and Dean are brothers, always teasing, sometimes fighting, but they're also Sam and Dean, lovers who live on stolen and forbidden moments. Adam knows that because he saw them in the motel room. They were carefully embracing in the same bed, kissing, absorbed in each other and yet keeping an ear out so that they didn't get caught by their youngest brother. It both warms Adam to know they're not alone and chills him when he thinks of all the things he has to go through on his own, the things he keeps to himself, the things that stay inside his mind and come back from time to time to haunt him. Yeah, Adam is glad for them, but he wishes he had someone to hold him too, when hunting seems like an impossible task.

Adam didn't want to let Sam and Dean know, he really didn't, but sometimes, his brain/mouth filter is not everything it could be. That's how he ends up spilling the beans: Dean, Sam and Adam are walking to a little dinner to get breakfast. They're not really awake yet, just barely moving. At least, Adam is barely moving, he can't really say for the others. They're sitting down at a table, and the waitress is walking towards them. Dean is looking her up and down with a smirk, and Sam is rolling his eyes. Adam suddenly bursts out:

"Oh, Dean! Stop that! It's not like you're not getting it at home."

Heavy silence. Sam and Dean have stopped their play and they're gazing at Adam. The waitress has the good sense to turn around and flee.

"I mean…"

Adam doesn't know what he wants to say, but he really doesn't want to hurt his brothers. It's not like they're hurting anyone, and they deserve every bit of comfort they can find. There is little enough of it as it is in their lives. So he tells them that. Dean looks at him some more, and, when Sam opens his mouth to question Adam, Dean silences him with a look.

They go on with their meal, as if nothing happened.

Adam knows Dean will let it rest. But he also knows Sam wants to talk about it. He's been waiting for Gigantor to gather his courage and come speak with him.

"You're really not bothered, are you?" Sam said when he finally decided it's time they talked.

"I'm not."

Adam thinks about stopping here, but poor Sam really looks worried, so Adam goes on.

"I know it's against the law, and I know it's freaky. But I'm not bothered, really."

"If you think we're freaks, why don't you leave?"

Sam is hearing him wrong and is putting the worst possible spin on Adam's words.

"I'm not saying Dean and you are freaks. You're hunters. You kill freaky stuff that most people ignore. You're always moving, you can't have an honest conversation with anyone. You went through Hell for one another. Somehow, your specific brand of brotherly love seems like small stuff."

Adam is done talking. Everything he just told Sam is true, but he left something unsaid: how very alone he feels. Sam nods once, smiles at Adam with his big silly grin and leaves to buy some more rock salt.

It takes Adam a while to notice, but after a few weeks, he realizes that they stop to hunt with others far more often. Sam is always pushing him to meet new hunters and their families. The truth hits Adam like a sledgehammer: Sam is matchmaking, trying to ease the loneliness he saw in his youngest brother, and Dean is watching the whole process with an amused smirk. It makes Adam laugh. At least, he'll always have his brothers.