A/N: This is a little one shot that I worked on between chapters of my last story. Right about the time that I was thinking of quitting altogether. Anyway, when the need for some hurt Sam, caring Dean and HERO!Bobby took over I started typing. They may have killed him off on the show(or maybe not, who knows) but I will never get rid of Bobby. This is for all of you who miss him too. GO BOBBY!
Disclaimer: Don't own anything but the creepy ghost!
No Breath to Catch
A crescent moon hung low in the sky and fog snaked around the tombstones as Dean panned the flashlight over the crumbling slabs struggling to pick out the name that he was searching for.
"You got it?" Sam asked from another section of the graveyard. His voice sounded detached through the darkness.
"Yatzee." Sam's flashlight bobbed closer as he caught up with his brother. His light joined Dean's. The white slab seemed to glow, the fog casting a halo around thirty year old concrete.
"Margaret Daniels." Sam read aloud. "This is her. She started killing off the family that moved into what used to be her house. They started remodeling and she didn't like it."
"She's a pretty nasty old hag." Bobby chimed in. The fog swirled as he stepped up to the boys' side. "Likes to suffocate her victims. It's how she bit it. Husband suffocated her so he could move on with the young housekeeper."
"Yeah. She started off with the cheat in the family. Twenty year old college sophomore in the house. Dropped off his girlfriend at one end of a parking lot and picked up a hooker at the other. Margie possessed the hooker and taught the guy a lesson. Then the husband and wife started arguing about the remodel and she off'd the husband."
"Well, let's get this done. Damp night's makin' my ol' bones ache."
"Time for a retirement home, Bobby?" Dean teased.
"Idjit." Bobby said, handing Dean a shovel. "Just for that, these ol' bones ain't doin the diggin'."
"Aww, man." Dean handed Sam his sawed off and pushed the shovel point into the compacted ground. "I hate it when spooks are middle aged before they start acting like children."
"Quit yer bitchin' and dig."
"Yeah, yeah." Dean muttered, pushing the shovel deep again.
The clink of the shovel against the casket had an out of breath Dean standing up straight. Sam shined the spotlight down the hole to see the wood of the casket. He reached down and gripped Dean's outstretched hand, hauling him out of the shoulder deep hole. Sam handed him the light and jumped down into the hole, the thump of his landing echoing in the night. He took the shovel and wedged the point into the seam of the casket lid. He pried up and with a crack and a groan the sealed lid popped loose. The spotlight revealed a bare, grinning skull with hair ringing it, and the tatters of a stained and rotting dress that clung loosely to rib bones.
Sam planted his hands on the ground and pushed himself up out of the hole near the foot of the grave, dusting them off on his jeans. He took the accelerant from Dean's hand and began to spray lighter fluid into the casket. The wind picked up, shrieking through the low tombstones and making the fog writhe like a horde of snakes.
"Think we're about to have company! Hurry up, Sammy!" Dean raised his shotgun and panned it around them in a wide sweep. Sam fished in his pocket for his lighter, just about to pull it free when he felt something shove him from behind.
He cried out as his body dropped forward, head smacking off the right side of the hard ground. He tumbled into the grave on his back, heavy body pulverizing much of the frail skeleton. The lid slammed and dirt cascaded back into the hole, burying the newly unearthed casket as if it were never dug up.
"SAM!" Dean yelled.
Bobby's shotgun blast echoed through the cemetery, Dean ducking reflexively as he was pelted with rock salt. The spirit disappeared with a shriek. Dean dove for the discarded shovel.
"We gotta get him out!" Dean began to dig furiously at the soil, Bobby's shotgun going off again.
"Damn spook's persistent!" Bobby called
"No kidding! Sam just happens to be right in the middle of what should be glowin' cherry right about now!"
Sam groaned as his head rolled to the side and pain registered. His eyes opened and he saw nothing. Just pitch black darkness. He moved to sit up and stopped abruptly when his forehead tapped off a slippery feeling surface with a hollow thud.
"Oh, what the hell?" He muttered. Feeling in the darkness, he found the edges of his prison way too close to his liking. A familiar, sickening smell began to build around him, his head beginning to spin as he found out that the close quarters and the fumes were making him dizzy and unable to fill his lungs with oxygen. He turned his head to the side and jumped when his gaze, as adjusted to the pitch as possible, picked out a dim round shape and the outline of teeth, as close to his eyes as his own nose.
"Oh god, the coffin." He wheezed, stomach swirling painfully. The smell seemed to seep into his pores, his breath becoming shallower, uncomfortable to pull in. He pushed both hands up, against the damp satin of the casket. "D-Dean!" He choked, the sound barely over a hoarse whisper. His head spun, halos of color dancing in front of his sight deprived eyes. His stomach lurched and lungs burned, another wheeze echoing in the dark confines surrounding him. He allowed his head to fall back to the grime beneath him as darkness closed in tight.
The muted sound of shotgun shells hitting the ground was followed seconds later by another blast.
"Damn!" Bobby swore. "She ain't givin' up!"
"Keep the bitch busy!" Dean cried. His shovel bit deep and thumped off the lid of the coffin as it had earlier. Dean tossed it aside and crouched down, sweeping earth away with his hands. He hooked his fingers under the edge of the lid and pulled up on it. It didn't budge.
"Sonuvabitch!" Dean screamed, "LET GO!" Another gun cracked and the lid gave beneath Dean's fingers.
Dean threw the lid back on the coffin, not even taking a second to dwell on Sam's pale face and slack body. He grabbed Sam by the collar and sat him up, quickly gripping him under the arms. "Little help here!" Dean stood, hauling Sam up against him. Bobby fired the pistol with iron rounds at the spirit again, the bullet dispersing the apparition and pinging off a monument to streak into the darkness. The older hunter kept one eye out for the ghost while helping Dean boost Sam's unconscious body out of the grave. Dean hauled himself out of the hole and collapsed on the ground beside his brother, just as the spirit materialized again, a snarl across her pale, flickering face. She reached out bony fingers and Sam slid away from Dean's grasp, back towards the hole that had held him prisoner.
"NO!" Dean cried, the sound completely drowned out by the crack of Bobby's shotgun, scrambling to catch Sam before he was pulled six feet under once again. Bobby rushed forward and struck some matches to life and tossed them into the grave. Sam stopped sliding as the spirit shrieked, his feet only inches from the edge, arms askew. Dean grabbed for him and hauled him away from the grave. Dean covered his own head and Sam's with his arms as the ghost and the casket went up in a rush of flame.
"Sam!" Dean barked as he lifted his head.
"Dean?" Bobby queried.
"He's not breathing." Dean straightened Sam's limbs and lifted his chin, tapping his cheek. "Sammy! C'mon. Damnit!" Dean leaned over and delivered a rescue breath, watching as Sam's chest struggled to rise. "Somethin's wrong!" Bobby hunkered down and noticed Sam's cyanotic, blue tinged lips.
"Wha-" Dean said after giving another breath.
Sam gasped, eyes popping open and rolling wildly. He tried to lift his arms and grasp at his throat as his mouth worked like a fish out of water, high pitched wheezes crossing his lips.
"The fumes, Dean. Sam's havin' an asthma attack!"
"He hasn't had one of those since he was a chubby kid."
"Yeah, well, that didn't stop me from keeping up on a prescription inhaler. It's in the car, the med kit, Dean, go!" Dean took off, boots sliding on the grass. He caught himself on a hand and pushed off again, sprinting towards Bobby's Chevelle.
Bobby scooted closer to Sam's head, raising it slightly from the ground. Sam's hand shot up and gripped Bobby's wrist as his mouth dropped open, squeaking sounds ripping from his throat. His eyes rolled, the lids bluish in the full moon light, face waxen. "Easy kid, Dean'll be back in a sec."
"Got it. I got it!" Dean barked, skidding to his knees beside Sam's head. Bobby shifted Sam higher, his head beginning to loll, eyes fluttering. "Sammy, you know the drill." Dean said, putting the dispenser between Sam's dry, blue lips. Sam struggled to close his mouth around the inhaler, fingers loosening around Bobby's wrist. Dean pushed down on the tiny cylinder at the same time Sam's chest rose, trying desperately to pull in air.
"Good boy." Bobby coaxed reminded of the time when Sam was eleven, struck with a bad asthma attack after playing with Rumsfield on a chilly spring morning. Bobby had only had success because Rumsfield sat at Sam's side, whining, begging Sam to cooperate in receiving the medicine.
"C'mon Sammy. P-please." Dean stammered, watching Sam try frantically to breathe. Dean pressed the cylinder again and Sam pulled in a breath, the change barely noticeable, but Dean picked up on it. He glanced at Bobby and received a barely perceptible nod, signaling that Bobby noticed too.
"D-" Sam gasped, eyes fluttering and slowly coming to rest on his brother. Some of the blue tinge was leaving Sam's face, being replaced by pale but normal color.
"Shh, shh. Don't you even try it yet. Just breathe." Sam's hand lifted, trembling, and he reached for his brother. Dean grasped Sam's wrist and put Sam's hand on his knee, surreptitiously keeping a finger on his racing pulse. Sam's breathing finally started to sound normal, his lungs freer. He relaxed a little against Bobby.
"Dizzy." Sam muttered when he could finally pull a full breath.
"Yeah. We think the fumes from the lighter fluid triggered the attack." Bobby replied helping Sam sit up and steadying him. Sam pulled away and puked, running a shaking hand back through his hair. Dean put a hand on the back of Sam's sweaty neck, feeling tenseness and trembling.
"C'mon. We're gonna getcha somewhere safe." Dean got to his feet and pulled Sam away from Bobby, allowing the older hunter to stand with a muffled groan. Dean put Sam's arm over his shoulder, waiting for Bobby to gather the shotgun and shovel and do the same with Sam's other arm. Together, the hunter's walked the youngest among them back to Bobby's car.
*The Next Day*
Bobby sat a cup of coffee in front of Dean, who was seated at the scratched, butcher block table. He sat opposite, wrapping his fingers around his own mug. "How's the kid."
"I'm okay, Bobby." Sam said, coming into the room, dressed as he had been when Dean put him to bed, in jeans and a white tee. "Can finally breathe, and I don't feel hung over."
"Good to hear, kid." Bobby stood from the table and motioned to the third empty chair. "You feel like breakfast?"
"I can eat." Dean chimed in.
"You could eat while getting a leg amputated, Dean."
"Jerk." Sam smiled, tired but trying.