Chapter 9

Dean sat on one of the chairs in Bobby's kitchen, playing with a beer bottle in his hand with a million thoughts running through his head, all about Sam. How is he going to help his brother when he doesn't even know how to help himself? He was drowning in a deep dark ocean of despair and guilt. All the 'what ifs' going through his head weren't exactly helping him in the least, filling his heart with remorse and clenching his gut with shame. Sam is traumatized. Broken, and probably beyond repair for all he knows. He might never even be the same again. The broken shell of a man, that's all that's left of him.

He immediately felt his palms shoot up to press against the tears unwillingly pooling in his eyes, not wanting to cry in front of Bobby, who was wheeling around the kitchen to prepare some food, or Castiel, who stood quietly at the other side of the room, watching all that's happening around him.

Castiel let his ocean-blue eyes fall on Dean, who looked to be trying to suppress his tears. He knew what he was thinking about, and felt bad for his friend, knowing how much his brother meant to him. He wanted to do something, to make him feel a little better, but it seems that he still doesn't understand humanly emotions that well.

Bobby forced a small smile as he wheeled to Dean with a plate of food. The thick silence in this house was tense and uneasy, and it made him feel a little suffocated. He hadn't found out much from Dean, although he plans to find out the answers of the questions that keep whirling in his mind. All he knows is that Sam isn't the same anymore and that he doesn't trust anyone to come near him. Not even Dean.

He put down the plate in front of Dean, the clink of the glass plate on the table brought Dean out of his reverie as he stopped playing with the bottle and looked up at Bobby, and then down at the plate. Dean licked his lips and returned a small smile of gratitude and appreciation for all his hospitality.

"Eat up, ya idjit." Bobby ordered softly.

"I...I will." He replied and huffed out a small sigh, before grabbing the edges of the plate and stood up, turning on his heel to the door. "But I want to feed Sammy first." He bit his lip and added. "And if he won't eat...then neither would I." He whispered softly before walking out of the kitchen, leaving the sad gazes following him out of the room.

XxX

Dean swallowed down the apple bobbing in his throat and rests his palm flat against the door, ready to push the door of the guest room open. He closed his eyes and rested his forehead against the brown wooden door, sighing deeply, before slowly pushing the door and poking his head in with a light knock.

Sammy was there and fully-awake, sitting cross-legged and rocking back and forth on the further corner of the room. The image reminded him slightly of a younger Sammy, sitting there like that after a terrible day at school, or after a really huge fight with dad, or after the worst of nightmares of Jessica's death haunting him and he didn't wanna sleep, or in the panic room detoxing, cleansing himself of the demon blood (which he doesn't wanna think about ever again).

Sam flinched and stilled at the light click of the door ,and looked up at him, pulled his legs up to his chest and hugged them close at the sight of him, tried to swallow down the fear he feels and scrunched his eyes closed to whatever was coming at him.

Dean pushed the door completely wide open, slowly walked inside the room and crouches quietly in front of him, biting his lip. His heart felt like it was breaking in two because he just can't see his brother like this. It hurt too damn much to.

He slowly puts the plate down and said gently. "Not gonna hurt you, Sammy. Just want you to get your strength up a little, 'kay?"

At that, Sam slowly lifts his eyes open and looks up at him through wide and bruised, bloodshot eyes. Dean smiles softly at him, a touch of sadness in it. He slowly shook his head and quickly buried his face into his knees and covered his ears at the expected abuse.

But none came.

"Sammy, you need to eat somethin'." He said lightly as he carefully pushes the plate of food slowly towards him.

Sam stared down at the sliding plate. He noticed that this wasn't like the food given there, where he had to tear the clean chunks off carefully. This didn't have any fungus on the bread and it didn't stink either.

Dean sighed softly, knowing his brother probably wouldn't feel very comfortable if he was in the room, he bit his lower lip and stood up on stiff legs slowly, walking out of the room.

But he still stood at the outside of the room with the door open a crack, watching as his broken sibling slowly uncurls and reaches for the plate of sandwich, tearing chunks of small pieces with trembling hands and eating them.

He ran his fingers down on the door and letting a small smile break into his face, knowing he'll be eating peacefully now.

XxX

They both ate in tense silence. Castiel had decided to continue his mission of searching for God and disappeared for a while with a promise of coming back later. Bobby had been meaning to ask a few things about the hunters that took the youngest Winchester, but it seemed like he couldn't spit them out, all the questions still stuck on the tip of his tongue, clenched behind his teeth. But now really felt like a good time, anything to break this uncomfortable stretch of silence.

"So, Dean." Bobby began, and continued when Dean looked up at him as he shoved a spoonful of food in his mouth. "What happened while you were there?" He asked softly.

The question made Dean still as the spoon hung mid-way towards his mouth. There was something in his face, something akin to pain and fear, something that horrified him as he lost all the colour from his face and almost looked like he was going to be sick.

"Dean?" Bobby pressed gently.

Dean looked around, avoiding eye-contact with him as if he didn't want him to see all the emotions in them that could clearly be seen on his face, and he knew immediately that it had something to do with his little brother.

Bobby bit his lip, deciding to let him off with this question as he had already seen all the answers on his face evidently. "Well, they didn't hurt you, did they?" He changed his question.

Dean swallowed and shook his head slowly. "They only had eyes for Sammy." And that's the worst pain they could ever inflict on me went unsaid, but Bobby heard them clearly.

Bobby felt a dull pain aching in his chest for his boys, it was just as hard for him to watch them like this as it was for them. He sighed again and decided to ask the question that had been bugging him above all the others. "And who were the hunters?"

Dean looked at him and looked away, huffing out a small chuckle. "Out of all the hunters it could've been...it was an old friend of dad's." He snarled repulsively. "Tim." He spat out the name with such disgust and anger that Bobby would've flinched slightly, but that wasn't what made him still and drop his spoon to the plate and he seemed to pale whiter than a ghost as he turned wide, horrified eyes to the elder Winchester.

"I...oh God, damnit." Bobby whispered in horror and shook his head. "That son of a bitch. God, I should've never sent those bastards to the kid." He said in half-revulsion and half-remorse.

Dean stood up so fast that the dishes on the table rattled slightly. "You what?" He asked incredulously and in anger. "Bobby, you knew better than that, damnit!"

Bobby didn't even flinch a little as he knew that this was coming. "Look, I really didn't know. If I did, I would've never done such a thing."

"Bobby, you know the hunters would've been after him after...after..." He trailed off, not wanting to mention the events of the past year, the year that had made so many cracks on their unbreakable relationship.

Bobby sighed guiltily. "I'm really sorry, Dean. I didn't know."

Dean stared at him but then he closed his eyes and plonked back down on the chair, running a hand wearily down his face. "Actually...I'm sorry." He bit the inside of his cheek and shook his head lightly. "Maybe the fault is mostly mine...I shouldn't have turned him down when he asked to come back in...I should've been there to protect him." He confessed miserably, his voice cracking with emotion and swallowed.

"Don't say that, boy, ya know it's not your fault. Yeah I mean, ya shouldn't have said no when he asked to join you again', but...it ain't your fault." He sighed and turned his eyes to where Sam might be right now. "If you wanna blame anyone for the state he's in, you can blame me, or that bastard Tim."

Dean sighed and swallowed, nodding slightly, the conversation didn't make him feel any better and he still blamed himself for what happened to Sam, but he knew that the hunters' were the one to blame the most, and he's gonna make them all feel the wrath of Dean Winchester.

Because they touched my little brother.


Sooooo, how did it go? OMG! Guys, so sorry for the late update...again. But hey, this one is a little extra longers than my usual 1,000-1,200 words huh? And thank you all so much for the support with all your reviews/favs/alerts. And thank you all for the amazing birthday wishes, they made me really, really happy. :)