A/N: Thank-you so much for all the support everyone, including reviews, favorites, follows, and pms. I appreciate it. I also want to give a special thanks to those I could not respond to personally. I was very worried about posting this fic but the reviews have made me feel better. I hope you like the conclusion.
He navigated the still somewhat dark roads, his mind filled with questions.
How the hell did Sam get hit by a car? The thought crossed his mind several times as he drove to the hospital. Why was he even out walking? Couldn't he take the car?
"I need information on Sam Singer," Dean said when he got to the admittance desk.
"Here are some forms," She said, thrusting a thick wad of papers at him. "The doctor will be out to speak to you shortly."
He opened his mouth to say something but thought better of it. He sat down in the nearest seat, all too aware that the last time he was in a hospital, Bobby died. He tried to look down at the paperwork but was embarrassed to admit that it was way too blurry. The alcohol still wasn't out of his system and he was feeling a bit disconnected. He tossed them on the side table for now.
"Mr. Singer? Dean?"
The doctor had to call his name twice before he registered it.
"I'm Dr. Lucious."
Dean wasn't in the mood for pleasantries or introductions.
"How is he?" He asked, quickly.
"He's in serious condition. He suffered a broken collar bone, a dislocated hip, and a couple broken ribs. He also sustained multiple contusions and lacerations, including a deep laceration to his leg. Apparently the car that struck him left a piece of metal lodged in his leg. However, our most serious concern is the head injury he sustained. He has been in an altered state and having seizures. We are struggling to get them under control."
"Seizures?" Dean questioned. He knew it was either the head injury or Lucifer was hanging out again.
"He has a pretty severe concussion, and we are monitoring his intracranial pressure. We haven't seen any significant swelling on the scans but the seizures are telling us something is going on."
Dean just stood there taking it all in.
"The police will probably want to talk to you about who could have hit him. Probably a drunk driver. There is a dive up the street. People have been petitioning to get it closed for years with the rate of hit and run accidents. They'll be lucky if they catch the guy and even if they do, he'll probably go scot free. Laws these days are so slack. Thankfully that passing motorist found him and stopped to call for help. I don't understand how people can just drive off and leave someone suffering like that."
Dean felt himself swaying slightly, but he caught himself.
"I'm sorry," he said. "I didn't mean to go off on a tangent like that. Your brother is lucky, given the circumstances."
Could the person who hit Sam have been in the bar with me? He wondered.
Dean nodded, his mind lost in thought.
"Sir, are you sure you're okay?" The doctor asked. "Have you been drinking?" He asked, obviously now catching a whiff of him.
"No," Dean lied.
He looked at him sternly and he felt shame fall over him like a dark cloak.
"Can I see him?" Dean asked, ignoring his penetrating gaze.
"I'll come and get you once he's settled in the ICU."
Dean slowly opened the door to Sam's room. It was quiet, and plain. Sam looked an awful lot like Bobby in the bed, a bandage covering a head wound. He was relieved that there was no ventilator nearby and just a nasal cannula under Sam's nose. Sam's face sported some road rash but he looked like he was sleeping.
Bobby looked like that too.
He shook the fear off. Sam had a hard head. He bounced right back after the Leviathan attacked him with a crowbar. The doctor hadn't given him dire news. Maybe they had actually caught a break this time. A few days bed rest and Sam would be fine.
He almost laughed at his own thought process. Since when were they ever that lucky?
Must be the alcohol, he mused.
Dean hung back, not sure if he should establish contact with Sam.
He remembered how Sam had made the first move with Bobby and taken his hand. He had sat by Bobby's side the whole time, even after he was gone, clutching his hand as if he could somehow will him back to life.
"Sammy?" Dean said, approaching the bed.
"Sammy?" Sam heard the words in the deep recesses of his mind. They were quickly drowned out by the sinister words of Lucifer.
"Don't listen to him Sammy," Lucifer interrupted. "Didn't I tell you this would happen? All brothers do is betray you, let you down, but you wouldn't listen. You don't live up to their perfect image and this is what you get! You get cast into the fire," Lucifer hissed, lips curled into a serpentine scowl.
"No," Sam repeated softly, cowering in fear.
"No one wants you, Sam. Why can't you accept that we are just the same? Rejected and abandoned by our fathers. Almost killed by our brothers."
"I'm nothing like you," Sam said, keeping his resolve.
"Know what I hated the most about you Sam. Your faith and your hope, this small pitiful flame that lived inside you and told you one day Dean would save you, one day you would make it out. All I wanted to do was stomp it out. Maybe you did make it out, maybe you didn't but you can't escape it. It will always be there! I will always be here."
"No!" Sam yelled, louder this time.
"He left you to die Sammy! Die!" Lucifer yelled, infuriated.
He thrashed on the bed, pulling equipment with him, yanking his IV. It was a lie. It had to be. Dean wouldn't do that. Yet how could a part of him believe it was true?
"You know Sam," Lucifer whispered. "You know."
His stomach burned and burst as if the idea was too much for his body to handle.
This was too much for him to handle. Dean watched in horror as Sam started seizing violently on the bed. Blood poured out of his arm and the white sheets turned red. Alarms started beeping loudly around him. Dean was pushed aside by the medical team that flooded the room.
"Get me some Lorazapam," the doctor yelled. "We have to get this seizure under control."
Dean watched as Sam continued to writhe, painfully on the bed. Slowly the drug was injected and began to take hold. Sam tremored and twitched slightly as he settled down.
"That's it Sam," the doctor said gently. He pulled out a penlight and shined it in Sam's eyes.
"He's ripped his IV and the sutures in the leg," the nurse said, stopping to examine Sam's leg. Dean saw the extent of the damage under the bandage. A jagged cut ran down Sam's thigh, with an imprint of an object of some kind on Sam's hip. Somehow the marking looked familiar.
"We are going to have to restitch that leg," the doctor said. "Why don't you go wait outside?" The doctor suggested to Dean.
Dean went back to the waiting room, dumbfounded on what was going on.
He tried to sit back down but he reeked. He had to get out of there and get rid of the stench. He wasn't sure if it was the alcohol or the guilt. He took the elevator down to parking lot where the car was parked.
"Hello Dean," a gruff voice said.
Dean whipped around incredulously.
"You're dead. You can't be here." He couldn't help but feel like Sam with his own demented version of Lucifer.
"You don't need to know because you aren't here!" Dean bellowed.
"Deep down you know Dean," Bobby said, simply.
Know what? He wondered. What am I supposed to know?
Know? He couldn't know that his brother would do that.
He heard the frantic voices again as he thrashed around unable to control it. Then he heard a gentle voice try to settle him back down. He felt hands on his leg.
"They are stitching you up Sammy," Lucifer chimed in, as if to keep him up to date on just what was going on. "Kind of like what they do to monsters. Even your brother doesn't trust you. That's why he killed your friend, Amy too. Think he saw a bit of you in her Sam? She was a monster. That's all you are too Sammy, a monster stitched together with scars and wounds that never heal. A freak," Lucifer finished.
He felt sweat break out on his face, his heart pounding loudly.
"His blood pressure just plummeted," the doctor said, suddenly.
"There is no way the blood he just lost from that leg wound would cause this."
"Does this hurt, Sam," they asked him as they pressed again on his sore shoulder.
He gasped audibly.
"He's having shoulder tenderness, possible spleen rupture."
"I think the kid is bleeding out. We have to get him up to the OR."
"Where is his brother?" The doctor asked. We need to get him to surgery."
"Yes, where is Dean?" Lucifer questioned. "He ditched you. Everyone ditches you, first your mom, then Jessica, then your dad, and your other dad, Bobby.
Each name punctuated the ache in his heart, ripped the hole inside of him even bigger but Lucifer was unrelenting.
"You're bleeding out Sam. Bleed it out. The pain, the emptiness. Give up."
"Stay with me, kid," a voice said in contrast. He felt the bed he was lying on being moved.
He didn't know who to listen to, who to believe anymore.
Dean wasn't sure what to believe anymore. Bobby was dead. Leviathan? He wondered.
"Not leviathan," Bobby answered as if reading his thoughts.
A ghost then?
"I'm not freaking Casper either. More like a conscience. I need you to remember."
"Remember what?" He asked, shivering in the early morning air.
"Last night," Bobby said, approaching the car. He looked at the side carefully.
How didn't I notice that before? Dean wondered as he noticed the head light was smashed and there was some front end damage, the hood ornament mangled and dangling.
"You must have hit something," Bobby said.
Hit what? He wondered. He was the one taking the hits lately. He wanted the relentless beatings to stop.
He just wanted him to stop hitting him. Each word hit like a blow to his abdomen accentuating the ache there. They weren't actual blows but the words were just as bad.
"Wow Sam, that scan doesn't look too good," Lucifer continued to rave. "Your insides look like roadkill. I don't think you are going to make it. Then you can come back and see me. Of course this can end. Just say it, Sam. Just admit it, Dean hit you. He doesn't love you."
"Stop!" He yelled inside his head.
"Stop!" Dean yelled at Bobby. "Just leave me alone!"
"Remember Dean. I know you aren't as dumb as you look, boy. Remember!" Bobby yelled, attempting to pry out his memories.
"Sir, are you okay?" He looked up to see a nurse looking worriedly at him.
"I…I'm fine," he stuttered. "What is it?"
"Did you finish stitching him up? Is he okay?"
"I'm sorry but there have been some complications. Sam is in the OR. We need your permission to operate."
Dean didn't know if he had ever moved so quickly to get back into that hospital. He quickly gave his consent, his hands trembling like crazy. His speed hadn't been enough to shake Bobby though whose reproachful eyes watched him every step of the way.
Now he sat back in the waiting room, waiting for news on Sam. His hands continued to shake and he knew it was not only the fear but the withdrawal from the alcohol. He found the nearest vending machine and bought a cup of coffee.
"Idjit," Bobby said simply in his usual way. "I'm barely dead a month and Sam is almost joining me."
"What do you want from me?" Dean asked at the end of his rope. He felt the threat of tears and he struggled to hold them back.
"Dean?" He looked up to see the doctor in front of him.
"How's Sam?" He asked nervously.
"He's still in serious condition. He is in recovery, his spleen was ruptured."
"But how?" Dean asked.
"Unfortunately sometimes internal bleeding doesn't show up right away. We removed it and it looks like we controlled all of the bleeding."
"Will he be okay now?"
"He's stable for now but he did have another seizure right before we anesthetized him. We are still concerned about the head injury. It doesn't seem to be any worse, which is a positive sign, but Sam's body has been through a lot. These seizures are really wreaking havoc."
"I think Lucifer is wreaking havoc if you ask me," Bobby chimed in.
Dean ignored him.
"When can I see him?" He asked.
"Soon," the doctor said. "We want to keep an eye on him for a little bit just to make sure there is no breakthrough bleeding before we return him to his room."
After what seemed like an eternity, the doctor came to get him and he returned to Sam's side. Sam looked much paler than before, minute twitches continuing to wrack his body.
"Sam?" He questioned again. "I'm here now."
"I'm here now," Lucifer said to him in a sing song voice. That anesthesia tried to block me out but I can handle it. It just gave me a little edge on this crazy train."
"Just go away," he managed feebly. He was exhausted and didn't have the energy to argue, even subliminally.
"I saw them hack into you like a tree trunk. That brother of yours did some real damage. That spleen they took out of you looked like a hunk of raw meat. I'm not surprised though. That's what happens when you get hit by a hunk of metal weighing 2000 pounds driven by a drunk idiot."
"No, it's not true!" He shouted, stronger this time. He began to thrash again in the throes of another seizure.
"I can go away Sam. Just admit what Dean did to you. Just admit he's a lousy brother. Admit it!"
"Dean, are you ready to admit it?"
"Admit what? You keep asking me but I don't understand."
"As much as I'd like to tell you it's a wonderful life and go all touched by an angel on your ass, you know why I'm here. What happened last night?"
He remembered bits and pieces, hunkering down at another motel, an argument with Sam about him going to the bar again, something about feelings and what they had talked about before, how Sam didn't want him getting killed. Then he recalled taking off and drinking until he couldn't see straight.
Did I drive that way? He wondered now.
"Yeah you did," Bobby said, affirming his fears.
Then he remembered he was close to the hotel, something bright in front of him, a thunk off the car. He wasn't sure what it was but he hadn't veered off the road or into another car so he was thankful. Then waking up on the floor.
The damage to the car. The thunk. The imprint of what looked like a hood ornament on Sam's hip. The cracked pieces of the car that left a jagged cut on Sam's thigh and now these pieces were all starting to fit together into one hideous puzzle.
Sam couldn't drive because I was driving the car. He was looking for me, he thought.
"I hit Sam," he said for the first time. "Bobby, I hit Sam. I'm the one who left him there."
He felt physically ill.
No it can't be true. No.
"I hit my brother with my car. I'm a monster," he said.
"Your brother is a monster."
"No, you are," Sam repeated with determination.
"Guess it runs in the family though. You didn't blink when you iced your niece."
How could he argue when it was true? But it was Dean standing there with a girl with a knife that could take away his world in an instant. He would choose Dean every time.
He felt his body shaking and he couldn't stop it, couldn't control it. Each muscle contracted, sending pain coursing through his already damaged body.
"Have you had enough Sam?" Lucifer asked him.
Dean had had enough. He watched in horror as Sam once again shook uncontrollably on the bed.
The doctors surrounded Sam as the monitors beeped loudly.
"His heart just stopped!" Dr. Lucious shouted.
Dean stood against the doorframe, watching as his brother, now eerily still, was shocked, an ambu bag placed over his mouth as they tried to get him back.
"We got him!"
However, Sam's seizure continued again even as he was brought back to life.
"Sammy, I'm sorry," Dean said, sincerely, tears beginning to leak from his eyes. "Sammy, please it's okay. Listen to my voice."
"Listen to my voice," Lucifer demanded.
However, Sam latched on to the sound of his name coming from the only voice he truly wanted to hear. Stone one he remembered. He would never do what Lucifer wanted. He'd endured years of torture in hell because he would never admit that he didn't love Dean, or say he wasn't his world. He couldn't be forced to utter the hideous lie that their bond didn't transcend death. But he had managed to survive. He never would admit defeat and say Dean wasn't coming for him. Brimstone and hellfire be damned, Dean would always save him.
"Sam?" He heard it louder this time, the soft welcoming sound that made his window a door, freeing him.
He cracked his eyes open ever so slightly, the seizure finally stopping completely.
"I think it's finally stopping. He's waking up."
He saw doctors and nurses surrounding him, fixing his limbs on the bed but he searched out the one face he was looking for.
Dean looked at him, a maelstrom of emotions covering his face: hope, love, relief, and most of all guilt.
He knew. The sounds of AC/DC gave it away and the look on Dean's face confirmed it. Dean had hit him with that car but he forgave him. Dean was here now. He hadn't abandoned him and that was what mattered. Lucifer hadn't been right because Dean hadn't left him. He would never leave him.
"I'm sorry, Sam," Dean said.
"For what?" He rasped. He was not going to let Dean suffer to think he remembered it.
Dean looked at him with confusion but with a glimmer of hope in his eyes.
"That you got hurt," Dean answered. "Do you remember what happened?"
"Not too much. I think I spaced out in the road." He was sure it was far better to have Dean think that he had been in the middle of another hallucination when he'd been hit and it was all just a terrible accident. "Glad you're here," he added, letting the exhaustion pull him back under, this time into a peaceful, quiet sleep.
He knew Dean was sorry and that's all that mattered. He didn't need to think he'd live with the trauma of the memory.
He thought he felt the whisper of a hand rest gently on his forehead for a moment and then it was gone.
When Sam opened his eyes, Dean saw emotions reflected there: pain, exhaustion, sadness, but most of all happiness to see him.
He thought for sure he'd see contempt in those eyes. However, he wasn't sure if any of this was real. Was Bobby real? Had he really hit Sam? And if he had was the alcohol the reason or was Sam zoned out in the middle of the road? He didn't know for sure and right now he didn't want to find out.
He watched Sam close his eyes, a peaceful expression crossing his face.
He sought out the nearest trashcan and threw the flask inside it.
He thought he felt the slightest whisper in his ear, but then it was gone.