Dean stopped in the doorway and turned his head, listening, reaching out with his hunter's instincts. What was that? What was that feeling? Like something was there, just beyond his grasp….
He shook his head and pulled the motel door closed as he walked back to the car.
Sam watched as his brother slid into the driver's seat. "You get what you need?" he asked.
"Yep." Dean held up the flask.
Sam nodded. "Ahh." He leaned back, looking at Dean out of the corner of his eye. "You ok?"
"Yeah, I'm good. Why?"
"Dunno, you look..." Sam shrugged.
Dean thought for a moment. "It's just...I thought…." He looked at Sam, his brother's brows knitted in concern. "It's nothing Sammy. Don't worry about it. You're right, it's just grief or whatever." He reached down and turned the key in the ignition.
They'd been on the road for about an hour. Sam was snoring quietly as he slept off the hangover caused by the enforced drinking they'd had to do to defeat the Shojo. Dean shook his head. A few drinks and his giant of a brother was hung-over. Hopeless. He chuckled as he listened to the slightly snuffling breaths coming from Sam. It was comforting. This was comforting. Driving the highway, his brother by his side. He looked over. Sam's mouth was slightly open and his hair was hanging across his eyes. He looked like a kid. Dean smiled. When was the last time him and his brother felt this good, felt this right. He couldn't remember. A long time. It'd been a long time since they'd been able to talk like they did now. It'd been a long time since they'd been able to trust each other like they did now. Too freakin' long. It felt so good to have Sam back.
Dean sighed, stretching his arms out as he held the wheel. It occurred to him that he had no idea where they were driving to. Times gone by, if they were in between jobs they would have headed to Bobby's for a bit of R & R, maybe work on his baby, get some proper sleep. But not now. Bobby's was no more. Bobby was no more. Dean swallowed. Bobby…..
The road ahead was straight and dull. Bland scenery passed by the windows. Not many cars on this back road, so Dean could let his mind wander. It wandered to Bobby and the conversation with Sam at the motel.
Grief is a funny thing. It can play tricks on you that's for sure. And Lord knows Dean wasn't in his right mind for a few weeks after Bobby….after Bobby died. Maybe all those things that he thought he saw were just figments of his imagination. Wishful thinking. Hope. But…. Something in Dean's gut told him otherwise. He'd never been one to rely on facts alone, he usually went on gut instinct and more often than not, that instinct was spot on and right now, Dean's gut was telling him there was something to this feeling, this feeling that Bobby was still around.
He thought through each 'event'.
Just after Bobby died Dean'd been drinking way too much. He knew it. Sam knew it. It'd be just like Bobby to call him on it. Bobby always let Dean know he cared, that he was watching out for him. Not overtly, but with a few well placed words or a gesture. That beer just up and vanished. Or….did it? Did he drink it and not remember? He was pretty twisted up at the time. Could have. Dean took a deep breath. It was possible. But the page. What about the page? The page that gave them exactly the information they needed to defeat the Amazons. It wasn't there and then it was. Sure, the window was open, maybe there was a breeze.…but there was EMF and Dean was pretty sure it wasn't caused by the wiring outside….pretty sure….like 90% sure. Ok, so maybe the beer and the paper, maybe they can be written off as grief and a puff of wind….but that card falling out of Bobby's book that led him right to Cass? Come on. Now that, that right there, that was proof right? Dean ran his hand up through his hair and frowned. That was just too much of a coincidence. Too much good luck. He just doesn't have luck like that. That was someone looking out for him surely. Leading him to his old friend. An old friend who could help his brother. If it wasn't for that card, falling out of Bobby's book right at the moment Dean needed it most, who knows where Sam would be now. In the loony bin or maybe even….dead. They never have that kind of luck. They just don't. Then there was the sword. He saw it move. It moved right across the floor and back into his hand. Like he Obi Waned it, right back into his hand. But it wasn't just that, it was the feeling. Dean had been dealing with spirits long enough to know that feeling, like something's there…. Yeah, Sammy was right, the Shojo was there and the Shojo could have been trying to get the sword away from Dean, but….
"Bobby?" Dean whispered. "Bobby, are you here?"
Sam grunted and moved in his seat. Dean was silent. He watched his brother, waiting until he heard Sam's small snores start up again.
"Bobby" Dean continued to whisper, "If you're here, umm, thanks. You know, for helping out." Dean stopped and listened with his whole body. Nothing. "Ummm you know, because….without you, I wouldn't have got Sam back….so….thanks Bobby. Thanks." He stopped again. "Bobby? If you're here, can you show me?" He held his breath. Silence.
Dean sighed deep and long. A lump had risen in his throat. What did he expect? Bobby would pop up and go BOO? What did he want? He didn't want Bobby to be a spirit. He didn't want Bobby to become the thing they hunt. He wanted Bobby to have moved on. Be with his wife. Be having a beer with Rufus, Ellen, Jo, Ash… He wanted Bobby to have peace. But.…he wanted Bobby….he wanted him to be here. Here with him and Sam. Here to talk to. Here to call them idjits….
"Bobby….if you're around and you need my help….find a way to let me know okay? I'm here Bobby. I'll do whatever you need me to."
He reached out again with his hunter's instincts. There was that feeling. Like something was there, just beyond his grasp….
"I miss you…." Dean said, so quiet it was almost a breath.
Sam shifted in his seat and stretched out his overly long legs. "What's happening? Were you talking to me?" He rubbed the back of his hand across his eyes and squinted sleepily at his brother.
"No dude. You musta been dreaming."
"Oh." Sam frowned at Dean. "Where are we?'
"I don't know. You're the navigator. I'm the driver. Help if you weren't snoring loud enough to wake the dead."
"I wasn't snoring."
"Yeah ok, sleeping beauty. If you're done with your little nap, do me a favour and pick a place on the map to stop. I could do with some food."
Sam leant forward and grabbed a map from the glove-box. "We should probably change cars again too" he added, matter of fact.
"Yeah" Dean said "We'll grab something tonight."
Sam nodded. "So maybe like a truck stop or something?" he said, as he studied that map. "But no more booze" he moaned.
Dean glanced over at his brother, as Sam yawned wide and loud. A small smile drifted across Dean's lips. "Thanks Bobby" he thought and he turned to face the road ahead.
…...In the back seat, Bobby sighed.