"Don't forget to come home tomorrow on your lunch break, the cable guy is coming out." Jessica said as she pulled her side of the comforter down.
"What time do I need to take lunch then?" Sam asked as he reached into the chest of drawers for his pajama pants.
"They SAY that they'll be at the house between 11:30 and 1."
"Don't they realize that people work?" Sam asked as he slipped the flannel over his slender hips.
"I know I know." Jessica sighed as she hunkered down into the warm depths of the bed. "They said they'd call when they were close."
"They said that the last time and then got pissed at us because we weren't there because we never got the call." Sam sighed and got into bed next to his beautiful wife. "Do they have my cell number?"
"That's the one I gave them," she waited until he was settled and turned off the lamp. And with a practiced grace of two people who had been married for 9 years, Sam wrapped himself around her, spooning her, holding her hands in his.
"Goodnight. I love you." He said softly.
"Love you too."
Sleep had just overtaken Sam when he heard the knock on the door. His eyes opened, and he looked around the room. The knock came again, this time it sounded more like a thump rather than a knock.
"What's that noise?" Jessica asked softly.
"It sounds like someone is knocking on the front door." Sam said. Jessica touched a button on her cell phone and the illuminated screen indicated that it was past midnight.
"Who would be here this late?" she asked.
"Your sister on the outs again with her boyfriend?" Sam asked as he got out of bed and pulled on a shirt. The knock again.
"Not that I know of." She said pulling on her robe.
Both hurried downstairs and they heard the knock just as they both reached the bottom of the stairs and instead of a third rap on the door they heard what sounded like something falling against the door. Sam hurried, turned on the light, and unlocked the door, he peeked outside and found a male form crumpled onto the ground, and in illumination of the porch light he saw blood pulling underneath the form's mouth.
"Oh God." He said and quickly opened the door wide, and did his best to push through the storm door without smacking the poor man's head while he did so.
"What's going on Sam?" Jessica asked.
"Stay back!" Sam ordered and Jessica halted her steps towards the door. Sam knelt down next to the man, grabbed him by the shoulders and sat him up, his head lulled boneless on his neck and the light poured onto his face. It was Dean. Dean with a battered and bruised face, blood was streaming from a cut in his hairline; blood was beginning to congeal under his nose, on his chapped and raw lips, and matting his untended beard. Sam's brother, whom he hadn't seen since he was 18 years old almost 13 years before was in a bloodied heap on his porch, and he looked like he was dead. And something deep inside of Sam knew that Dean would want to see him one more time before he died, and that same part of him knew that Dean wouldn't want to die alone. Sam's trembling fingers went to his brother's neck and felt for a pulse, and time seemed to stand still as his fingers waited for the thump against their sensitive pads and when it finally came, it was like someone poured ice water into his veins, veins that had been on fire with anxiety. Sam had to fight to stay alert and not succumb to the cold of relief.
"Dean." Sam said more shakily than he wished. He got behind his brother and tried to pull him into a sitting position, tried to get him to wake up enough for Sam to get him inside. "Dean. Come on man." He tried again and lightly slapped the less bruised of his brother's cheeks.
Dean roused a little and opened his eyes, "Come on Dean, you have to stand up so I can get you inside."
"Sammy?" Dean slurred. "'sthat you?"
"Yeah, Dean, it's me Sammy." Sam swallowed hard, tying to push the lump of emotion out of his throat. "Jessica?" He called. "I need some help." The storm door opened and his wife was at the ready.
"What? Oh my God. What happened to this man?" she asked.
"I don't know. Help me get him inside." Without hesitation she put her hands under the man's arms and helped her husband get him inside, out of the cold, out of the snow, out of the elements that were normal for November in Colorado. It took the two of them and a prayer or ten to get the man upstairs and into the guest room.
"Help me get his boots off." Sam said and began assessing the damage. Sam touched and poked and prodded, looking for broken bones or signs of internal bleeding. All he could find were superficial wounds, and a lump on the back of his head that told Sam he more than likely had a mild concussion and that was the reason for the unconsciousness. Idiot must have drove here from God knows where with a concussion, stupid idiot. Sam chastised in his head.
"We should call a doctor." Jessica said, her eyes bright blue with worry.
"No! No doctor." Sam said sharply, a little too sharply perhaps.
"Sam. Look at him. He looks like he's been to hell and back. He needs a doctor."
"He won't stay even if we take him."
"How do you know Sam?"
Sam looked up into his wife's eyes and said softly, "He's my brother. And my brother doesn't do hospitals, no matter how close to death he is." The breath was knocked from Jessica at those words and she looked back down at the bruised and battered man and then at her husband.
"This is Dean?" She asked softly.
"This is my brother Dean." Her delicate hand went to her mouth.
"But he hasn't talked to you in how long?"
"Almost 13 years."
"Why would he come here?"
"I don't know. Whatever it is, it can't be good."