Hey, everyone! Time for a new story! Prepare for some hurtSam! This is set in season seven, but before 7.10 (I don't even want to go there right now). Don't want to give too much away for this one though, so happy reading! :) Reviews are love, of course! Lol

-Punkin

"The Devil in Your Shadow"

"They'll come for you, you know."

And Sam tries his best to ignore it. To ignore the whisper of malicious intent, to ignore the icy touch of unreal fingers on his shoulder, to ignore the death saturated breath against his ear. His eyes instead stay glued to the computer screen before him, his thumb a constant, aching press against the scar tissue on his palm. He will eventually go away…Sam only has to be patient.

"You think you've paid your dues, darling? Think our play time was God's salvation on a platter?"

Sam had very nearly accompanied Dean to the bar. His brother's drinking habits, however, were growing increasingly reckless and he hadn't much felt up to witnessing the patented Winchester method of 'coping'. So, instead, he'd attempted to convince his sibling to lay off the alcohol and help him research. Alas, his tone only elicited a defensive jibe and a slamming motel room door. It isn't so bad, really. Sam's a big boy after all and most certainly can handle being on his own.

Yet, that only applies when he really, truly is alone. And these days, he can never be sure.

"Hate to break it to you, Sammy, but daddy dearest didn't cast me to the pit for salvation. No…he threw me down there because I was beyond saving."

Sam feels his nails dig into his skin and he shifts uncomfortably in his seat, his heart thumping within his ears. "Not real…" he mutters, just to remind himself that he- his voice included-is solid, and that he does, in fact, have some semblance of control.

"A tragic, lost cause. Remind you of anyone, Sam? Hmmm? Come now…you remember how I hate it when these things are so one sided."

An electric current seems to stream through him, flashes of horrendous things tearing across Sam's mind and escaping from the usual edges of his consciousness where he holds them at bay, creeping in and out throughout the course of the day-the GOOD days, mind you-and only taking their strong hold at night when he is no match for the brutal nightmares.

"You know better than this. You've given nothing, Sam. They'll never stop. They'll come for you, like they've come your entire life. You know it, Dean knows it. Why do you think he's drowning himself in liquor? He realizes it's never going to end, not while dragging us around."

"Shut up." Sam growls, slamming his laptop shut and standing so abruptly that the chair topples to the carpeted floor. His breathing has picked up, chest heaving. Only then does he comprehend the warm, sickly blood that's trailing its way between his fingers, over his palm and down his wrist. The sight and, more prominently, the smell send his stomach into somersaults, his world tipping and spinning on its side.

Suddenly, Lucifer isn't just an echo over his shoulder; he's in front of him, beside him, all around him. The gentle laughter almost sends him crashing to his knees, the condescending grin bringing to light unpleasant, deafening screams inside his mind.

"Why so upset, Sammy? I thought I wasn't real? Or is it my brutal honesty? Over one hundred and fifty years together and not one lie. Has to be the healthiest relationship you have. Tell me, Sam, what's it like having a brother treat you like you've fallen off your rocker?"

"I said, shut up!" And Sam's yelling now, spinning in a circle in a desperate attempt to fight against an onslaught he has no means of defeating. "Leave me alone." There's a chuckle again, another ghostly touch on the contours of his cheek.

"They'll come for you. It doesn't matter how far you run or what you do, they'll tear down everything in their path until it's just you and me. You and me, Sammy…that's all there's going to be in the end. Isn't that right, bunk buddy?"

The walls are gone. The room is gone. There's just red. Everywhere Sam looks, there's blood and tears and endless crimson stains. Someone's shouting, inarticulate and deafening, and at his fingertips there's nothing but the numb cold of emptiness. Because that's all his hands have ever reached for, all his hands have ever grasped each torturous day in hell…emptiness. Nothingness. A complete and all consuming lack of some unknown factor crucial to his proper functioning.

All at once, he feels the ground shake beneath him, the distant pounding of unfamiliar footsteps. Blearily, through the stark red, the screeching, the fire, and the ice, Sam registers the flicker of cloudy, dark and abysmal black eyes. Something hard slams excruciatingly into his stomach, into the soft flesh of his cheek and the small of his now vulnerable back. He's felled in those few, brief moves, unable to defend himself or even properly assess his attacker. He can't trust his own mind, can't trust what his eyes say are real.

Everything has spun together, mixed into one giant, squirming, confusing ball of color. And all it's doing is sending him spiraling faster and more rapidly into depths he cannot untangle from. Strands of present, past, and imaginary have tied his arms and legs, have wound around his neck and buried his face into tortured memories. The world is dimming, there's copper in his mouth, yet as Sam dwindles he perceives a chilled hand running through the strands of his hair, a haunting, consoling, and sorrowful smile, "Like I said, Sammy. They'll come for you. You and me."

TBC…

End note? Just one: Dean, get your butt back here and save your brother! Lol Hope you liked it! :)