A MARVELOUS THING

By: Karen B.

Summary: Season Seven Warning! Very Short tag to 'Plucky Pennywhistle's Magical Menagerie'. That's fun to say and to type and a blast to watch. A little brotherly moment. Beat-up Sam/ worried, smartass, Dean. Rock on Supernatural!

Disclaimer: Not the owner

Rated: Cheesy with a dash of awe.

"What walks down stairs, alone or in pairs, And makes a slinkity sound?
A spring, a spring, a marvelous thing, Everyone knows it's Slinky…
It's Slinky, it's Slinky, for fun it's a wonderful toy
It's Slinky, it's Slinky, it's fun for a girl and a boy

- Advertising Jingle

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There was nowhere to hide and there was nowhere to run, but Sam ran anyway.

He ducked and belly flopped and crawled, turned left and darted right, twisting and turning through the painted brown walls of the labyrinth. He ran and ran, jiggling and tugging and trying to open one of the many doors, but they were all locked and he didn't have the time to try and pick them.

Sam ran some more, but the passageway would not come to an end. Once he fell on his ass to the black-and-white, checkerboard tiled floor and it took superhuman strength just to get up and start running again.

Oddly, the faster he tried to run the slower he got. His legs and feet just wouldn't work. It was like running on an icy patch of road and everything was moving like syrup, in slow-motion.

No matter what he tried he couldn't escape the chaos.

As he ran the hallway doors randomly flew open, spooky, creepy, happy clowns of every shape color and size jumped out at him, super-soaking him with loaded paintball guns, water balloons and silly string.

"Slowpoke, slowpoke," his assailants chanted.

Sam cupped his hands over his ears trying to drown out the loud laughter. He was outnumbered and outgunned. He felt sick. His head pounded and his body ached all over. Just when he thought he couldn't take another step, all the hallway doors banged shut and everything went stone-cold quiet.

Sam stopped in the center of the passageway, confused. Slowly he let his hands fall away from his ears as he panted heavily trying to catch his breath.

"Sam," Someone called to him from behind.

Sam stiffened, his insides sloshing around and electricity shooting up and down his spine. His heart was beating too fast and his mouth was dry and he was sweaty and dizzy.

"Sammy."

Sam spun around, horrified to see a pudgy clown with a pointy hat, spinning polka dotted tie that lit up, and a huge mouth full of rotting sweet teeth.

"Order of fries for table ten," the jelly-belly clown said, waddling toward him, his big floppy red shoes squeaking with every step and teeth clicking.

As the clown drew near; Sam could smell whiskey and cigars.

Sam started to back away only to find his ass now magically sitting in a chair at a table. He tried to get up, but it was like he was bound and tied there.

Plucky the Creep-o clown waddled forward faster like a penguin on steroids. "Make you big and strong," he slurred, tripping drunkenly and losing his balance.

Sam watched as the clown's creepy head whacked against the corner of table number ten. Unable to break his fall the clown landed on top of Sam, knocking into Sam and tipping his chair backward. Sam landed flat to his back on the black-and-white tile checked floor, Creep-o landing on top of him and hot French fries splattering all around.

"Oh, hell, sorry, kid. Sorry." Creep-o lifted his head.

Sam stared up into the painted white face and yellow ringed eyes, horrified by the wide-open split on the bridge of the clown's nose; Creep-o's blood welled, dripping from the cut and dribbling into his mouth.

The taste was oddly familiar and so very wrong. Sam felt so helpless. So small. He had to get away.

"No. No." Sam spit and kicked his legs as he tried to scramble out from under the clown, but his arms were caught between the wooden slats of the chair. A group of children gathered around along with a group of equally Creep-o clown friends with the same painted on smile, all silently laughing. White gloved hands reached, touched and pawed to help, but help they did not. Their touch, instead, burning like the flames of a raging hot fire.

"Stay away!" Sam jolted awake with a grunt of pain

"Dude, I am away," Dean said, looking back at Sam from the front seat.

Sam grimaced, staring into a pair of worried green eyes. "Dean?" He blinked, doing a double-take.

"Who else, man? Slap Happy the clown?" Dean sarcastically snarked, lazily bouncing his pastel- colored slinky up and down.

Sam stared out the front window from the back seat. Grayish-white clouds wisped along in the equally grayish-white sky. It was early morning, the sun just starting to rise. They were parked on a pier overlooking a dirty greenish-brown sea-tossed lake, wooden steps leading down to a pebbly, seaweed tangled beach. Sam frowned at the noisy-ass pelican perched on top the back of an empty bench. Damn thing sounded like it was laughing. Must have been what woke him. Or maybe it was his throbbing head and acute soreness of every fiber in his being.

"Gawd," Sam panted, slowly easing back down to lay on his bunched up jacket disguised as a pillow.

"View's breathtaking. I know." Dean leaned further over the seat. "You doing okay back there, Bozo?"

"Shut up and play with your slinky," Sam barked, his voice raspy.

"Clowns try to eat you in your sleep, Bart?"

Sam didn't say a word.

"What'd you dream about, Clownophobic?" Dean pressed.

"Let's just say," Sam took a deep breath and hunkered down further into the lumpy seat, "Nothing much."

"Seriously, Pennywise, you know you can stop dodging the subject and tell me why you're so afraid of 'It'," Dean chuckled as he continued to flip-flop the slinky from hand-to-hand. "I know the pizza sucks at those places, but what happened that was so bad to scar you for life, Sam? Hot wax? Blindfolds? Handcuffs?"

"Those are your fetishes, Dean, not mine," Sam said, squinting hard up at the roof of the car, pinching the bridge of his nose and licking the taste of blood off his lips.

"True." Dean shrugged, setting the slinky on the seat next to him.

"Besides, I told you," Sam said, dropping his hand to his chest and rubbing a sore spot. "I'm not that guy anymore," he proclaimed bravely. "Not afraid."

"Right, Harpo, because that's why you ditched the clown doll I got you."

Sam shivered. "I said, shut up and play with your slinky."

"Here." Dean pulled of his jacket and tossed it over Sam.

"Thanks." Sam snuggled down, pulling the warm leather up under his chin. "Really, Dean, thanks."

"Don't go all fan girl, kissy-woo on me, it's just a jacket," Dean garbled.

"Guh, my head," Sam moaned.

"Bro, you look like you've been run over by a monster truck and pounded to death," Dean observed worriedly. "Seriously, Ronald, how are you feeling?"

"Like I've been pounded to death, and run over by a monster truck…twice," Sam admitted sarcastically, fidgeting to find a comfortable spot in the not so comfortable 'piece of shit' car. "Just let me go back to sleep." His bangs fell over his eyes as if trying to shut out the world for him.

Damn Sam missed their Baby.

Dean rolled his eyes. "Okay, Clowny the Clown. Don't get your ruffles in a bunch." Dean turned back to the front seat, clicked open the glove box and rattled around inside it for a second. "Here," Dean's head popped back into Sam's view, "Take these."

Sam adjusted the bangs out of his eyes and stared at the two white tablets being offered. "What are they for?"

"For pain you idiot. Just take them." Dean shoved a bottle of water at Sam.

"I would, but I ran out of strength to sit up," Sam whispered, refusing to take the bottle or move a single solitary muscle.

"Whatever, Krusty." Dean disappeared in the front seat again, once more rummaging and cursing and rummaging, then his head popped back into view. "Open up, Punchinello funny fellow."

"Dean," Sam whined, looking strangely at the needleless syringe in his brother's hand. "I'm not three-years-old."

"Apparently today you are." Dean dipped the syringe closer to Sam's mouth. "Open," he ordered more sternly.

Sam opened.

"Atta boy," Dean said squirting the crushed up pills and water mixture into Sam's mouth. "Swallow, dude," Dean laughed that kinky sort of Dean laugh.

Sam rolled his eyes and swallowed.

"Good, boy," Dean said proudly. "Now go back to sleep, Sleepy."

"Sleepy is a dwarf, Dean, not a clown."

Dean sat back up front and grabbed his slinky. "Dwarfs, clowns, midgets, Sammy, what's the difference," he said, looking up into the review mirror to peer at Sam, genuine concern in his eyes. "Rest, buddy, think happy thughts," he said, opening the flimsy car door.

"Hey," Sam protested, groaning as he lifted his head slightly to see better, "Where you going?" he asked worriedly.

"To do what you've been bitching at me to do since you woke up, Glitter-Belle." Dean smiled and nodded.

"Clara-belle," Sam corrected, snippily, head weakly plopping back down.

"Whatever, Mr. Giggles. There's still just one thing I must do before we go," Dean said, waggling his eyebrows and shooting a quick glance out the window at the wooden steps. "Everyone loves a slinky, eh, Twinkle Toes." Dean exited the car, taking his slinky with him.

"Big brothers…" Sam grouched closing his eyes and cuddling Dean's jacket closer as if it were his very own teddy bear. "…a marvelous thing. Happy thoughts. Think happy thoughts, think happy thoughts," Sam mumbled over and over until he finally fell asleep.

The end

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Author's (fun) Note: Check out the Ace Ventura 'Slinky' scene on You Tube. Picture Dean and a set of wooden steps instead.

Author's (serious) Note: Two theories on Coulrophobia, or fear of clowns. One is that the fear is based on a negative personal experience with a clown at a young age. The second theory is that mass media has created a hype surrounding evil clowns such that even children who are not personally exposed to clowns are trained to dislike or fear them.