A/N: This one-shot is dedicated to the lovely Jessica Moore on her birthday today! This was really fun to write and I loved every second of it.

Hope you're having a nice time up in Heaven Jess!

Disclaimer: I own seasons 2, 3 and 6 on DVD, Jim's memoir and a laptop.

xxxxxx

Beating Sun:

Jessica Moore meets Sam Winchester on a bright Friday and it's outside of their physics class and it's warm and she's wearing her favorite red sweater and that should have meant something to her. She was wearing said red sweater when her cousin Janine got news of her lung cancer and she was wearing said red sweater when her mother got into that car accident last June. But it didn't register to her what she was wearing because seven feet away was a tall sophomore with hooded eyes and a warm face and the sight of him pushing back his hair with one hand was doing weird things to her stomach.

It takes her a week to approach him and the second she does she can see she'd been right about the hooded eyes and there's pain there and a tiredness that comes from knowing too much and having seen too much and right away she knows she wants to keep him.

"I'm Jess." She sticks her hand out and smiles brightly and gazes up and hopes he feels the weird stomach things too.

A timid smile. A beautiful smile. "Sam."

xxxxxx

Sam doesn't like popcorn. Or licorice. Or Metallica.

That last one might be have to do with that picture she never gets to see that he keeps in one of his numerous books though. She figures it's too early to ask.

It's been five months and he's smiling more and opening up more and holds her hand in his warm hand and gazes at her with affection and love and she can feel forever with him.

xxxxxx

Sam has secrets. A lot of secrets.

He's sweet and understanding and caring and smart and reads and when he asks what's wrong, he actually wants to hear what's wrong.

But he also has a lot of secrets.

She finds the knife in the back of his dorm room seven months in and it's curved and glistens in the sunlight and she puts it back before Sam can come out of the bathroom and catch her.

She finds the blood stained and tattered shirt eight months in and it's in his top drawer and it looks old and used and broken and well loved. It's faded and stained and she can see dried blood that hadn't wanted to come out in small blotches. It feels soft and warm and she knows she should be scared but the shirt also feels like a piece of history so she puts it back in and says nothing.

She finds the picture in the back of the book nine months in and there's a car and Sam and a man with dirty blonde hair and a sparkling smile. They're leaning into each other and the man has Sam in a headlock and it looks painful but Sam's teenage face is glowing with joy and love and she doesn't think she's ever seen him like that around her. She flips the picture over and in four little words are all she needs to know.

Dean, Sam and home.

xxxxxx

They move in together eleven months in and she loves Sam and feels safe with him and the forever's starting to look more possible and they have their first fight.

It's loud and fierce and she can't remember what it was about but she does remember the fury and the power in Sam's eyes and how scary he'd been and how she'd flinched at his words.

It's the first time she ever cries because of him.

He apologizes afterwards and is so guilty and soft and there are actual tears in his eyes and she forgives him because her stomach still does weird things and his eyes are hooded and she wants to keep him and she wants forever.

xxxxxx

When Sam's drunk he talks. A lot.

Not coherent sentences but sometimes she can pick apart certain words from the jumbled mess that are his spewing.

He talks about Dean. A lot. About how sorry he is and how he misses him and how he should have never left and how he misses home.

He talks about his dad. A lot. About how mad he is still and how they deserve more and how he was just a kid and how he needs more.

He talks about weird stuff too. A lot. About bodies and burning and darkness and fires and pain and blood and death.

She holds him through the drunken rambles.

xxxxxx

One year and a month in Sam tells her he loves her for the very first time.

She's recovering from the flu and her hair's a mess and she has no make-up on and she's dressed in sweats and dozing off in their bed when he whispers it.

"…Love you."

She freezes, suddenly very much alert.

Sam has never, in all their months, spoken those words. She had said them eight months in and he'd smiled and kissed her and held her tight but he hadn't said it back. She had accepted it because…because his eyes, despite all her efforts, are still hooded and there are still brief flashes of pain here and there and faint tears spring occasionally when the right word is mentioned. She'd given up hope.

A small smile flickers across her lips before she reaches forward and cups his chin in her hands. "I know."

He leans into her touch.

xxxxxx

She finds out about Sam's mom one year and three months in.

It's Friday and they're watching a movie and she asks because he never tells.

"My mom? Um, not really much to tell." He mumbles and it's so cute and endearing she nearly dies.

"Come on Sam, talk to me. I barely hear anything about your family." She digs because it was time she knew.

He stares ahead for a long time and when he glances down at her it's with a magnified sadness in his eyes. She shudders. "There's not much to tell because I never knew her. She, she died when I was a baby. My dad doesn't really talk about her so," he shrugs. "that's it really."

She tightens her hold on his waist and leans her head into his chest. "Okay."

xxxxxx

Sam has scars. A lot of scars.

There are a few scattered ones along his back and some near his ribs and a really faint one on his leg.

There's one though that resides right over his heart that she makes sure to kiss whenever she gets the chance. It's about an inch wide and it's pink and slightly raised but it goes with the rest of him and she sort of loves it.

Sam doesn't say anything but she knows these scars are part of his dark past. She wonders how he got them and from who and why.

xxxxxx

When she finally gets to meet Dean she's not sure what to think.

It's only been a year and a half and the weird stomach things are still there and his eyes are still hooded and she's been able to keep Sam and forever looks closer and closer with every passing day but she'd been fearing this day. The day his brother finally came to take him back.

Dean's cocky and smart mouthed and makes jokes and she's not sure what to think.

She lets them talk alone and fights the need to eavesdrop because she's a good girlfriend and she knows Sam needs this.

She lets him go because she knows he misses his brother and she knows his brother misses him and she can already see that what they have, Sam and Dean, whatever it is, it's something powerful and enticing and she doesn't stand a chance either way.

xxxxxx

Jessica's wearing the red sweater the day it happens.

Sam's been gone for a few days and she misses him so she bakes cookies in said red sweater and cleans the place some in said red sweater and before she goes to bed she places said red sweater into the hamper.

When she wakes up later to a doorbell to be greeted by the sight of Brady she's wearing said red sweater over her nightgown.

xxxxxx

She can't scream.

She's there, hanging and bleeding and choking on her own blood and it burns and it hurts and she can hear Sam in the kitchen and she can't scream.

When her flesh starts to burn and death gets close and Dean comes in and takes her forever away, she realizes she'd been wearing the red sweater the day she'd met Sam and she really should have known.