Chapter Twelve: Revelations
Bind all of us together
Ablaze with hope and free,
No storm or heavy weather
Will rock the boat you'll see.
The time has come to close your eyes
And still the wind and rain,
For the one who will be king
Is the watcher in the ring.
It is you.
It is you.
-'Revelations' by Iron Maiden
Sam Winchester could not sleep. He lay on his back on the bed in Jim's second guest bedroom, staring at the ceiling, wishing he could just close his eyes and drift off like Dean but it wasn't happening.
The voices were talking to him again. Calling out to him.
And Sam was scared.
No, Sam thought, they're not real. Don't listen to them.
He wanted Dean but he was afraid to get up. He was afraid he'd see things too.
He hated it when the voices tried to make him do things he knew he shouldn't. Sometimes they wanted him to hurt people.
Sam put his hands over his ears in an attempt to drown out the voices and gave a choked sob when he found he could still hear them.
"DEAN!" Sam shouted and flung himself out of bed. He wrenched open the door and nearly flew down the hallway. He slammed into Dean's door, shaking it in its hinges. His brother opened the door, a frantic look on his face.
"Sammy! What's wrong?" He grabbed Sam's arms and pulled his hands away from his ears.
"They won't go away!" Sam all but wailed, tears streaming from his eyes.
"Okay, okay," Dean wrapped his arms around Sam and hugged him, trying to calm him down.
But Sam didn't want to calm down! He was so tired. He was so tired of hearing the voices. He was so tired of medications that didn't work, that only made him feel sick and sad. He was tired of being tired.
Sam's knees buckled and he sank to the floor, taking Dean with him.
"Please… please," Sam whimpered, "Make them stop… Dean…"
Sam knew he was asking the impossible of his brother but he couldn't help it. Dean always seemed to make anything better and right then Sam wasn't exactly thinking rationally, not with phantom voices whispering insidiously in his head.
"Shhh," Dean murmured, "It's okay, everything's alright."
Sam rested his chin on Dean's shoulder and shivered despite the oversized hoodie he was wearing.
Nothing was alright! Nothing good ever happened to him!
Sam heard a picture fall off the wall beside him in a crunch of glass and Dean tightened his grip on him.
"None of that," Dean murmured, "Just breathe… in, out, in, out…"
Sam sucked in a shaky breath and fisted the back of his brother's t-shirt in his hands, holding on as if for dear life.
The light overhead flickered momentarily before going out, plunging the brothers into darkness.
Sam let out a high-pitched whine of misery and clutched furiously at Dean.
"I've got ya, Sammy," the older brother comforted, "I'm not letting you go."
He squeezed his eyes shut, grinding his teeth together.
"Sam," Dean stopped hugging his brother and grabbed his head instead, hands on either side of his younger brother's face, "Look at me, Sam."
The younger sibling opened his eyes and stared into Dean's hazel ones.
"Remember what I told you?"
Sam nodded stiffly, "D-Don't l-listen to 'em."
Dean was always telling Sam not to listen to the voices. Sam was sure his brother said it more often than Dr. Calhoun did.
"That's a good boy," Dean murmured and embraced Sam again.
"D'n," Sam whispered, "I'm s-scared."
"Don't be, Sammy," his brother replied, "As long as I'm here you've got nothing to be scared of."
Sam sniffed and wiped his dripping nose across the back of his hand.
His gaze shifted towards the staircase when he heard the sound of footsteps ascending towards them.
"Dean? Sam? Do you need any help?" Pastor Jim's voice whispered quietly.
"I've got it," Dean told the older man, "Thanks though."
Sam's gaze traveled back to his brother's as the Pastor's footfalls faded.
"Sammy," Dean murmured and shifted where he was crouched on the floor, "Sammy, hey, you're alright."
Sam shook his head- or at least he tried to but Dean still had his hands on either side of his face- and whimpered.
"I am not going to let anything bad happen to you," Dean told Sam sternly, his grip on Sam's head tightening, "You hear me?"
"Deeeann," Sam whispered and raised his hands to his brother's, "L'eggo. You're hurting me."
"Understand me? Sam?" Dean insisted and Sam nodded, eyes wide and tear-filled, snot dribbling from his nose.
Dean finally released Sam and wiped his sleeve over his brother's face as though Sam was a little boy. Dean stood and Sam stared up at him from his position on the floor.
"C'mon Sammy," Dean reached down one hand, "Let's get you back to bed."
Sam accepted his brother's hand and followed Dean as he led him back to his room. The younger man didn't miss his brother's cringe when he flicked on the light and saw the cracks in the windowpanes, the dresser drawers flung open.
"Go on, Sammy," Dean said as he began tidying up the room as much as possible; Sam sat down on the bed but watched his brother.
"M'sorry, Dean," he apologized. Jim had just finished putting new glass in the windows and now they were ruined again.
"Not your fault," Dean muttered distractedly.
Sam nodded but frowned. It was his fault. He still didn't know how to control his psychic ability. Pam had tried to help him but had failed. That had been nearly two weeks ago now.
Dean glanced up and scowled, "Sam. Lie down."
Sam did as his brother asked. He didn't like it when Dean got mad at him. Sam tried to be good. He tried to keep from breaking things and stay quiet and out of the way but Dean seemed to getting more and more angry as the days passed.
Dean's expression softened as he looked down at Sam with his wide, wet green eyes. He pulled Sam's blanket up to his chin.
"You know where I am if you need me," he said gently, patting Sam's chest through the duvet.
"Good night, Sammy," he turned and clicked off the light, leaving the door open a tiny bit so that a sliver of illumination from the hallway filtered into the room.
Sam lay there in bed with his eyes open and the voices in his head whispering for a long, long time.
I ran a hand tiredly down my face as soon as I left Sam's room. Man, I was exhausted. And stressed. Between learning to hunt with Bobby, searching for signs of Meg Masters and taking care of Sam, my plate was more than full. Sam took up most of my time. It seemed that all the demons had decided to take a vacation at the same time and although Bobby kept searching for that blonde-haired bitch, I spent most of my days with Sam.
I knew the latest prescription wasn't working. It had stopped shortly after we returned from the trip to Illinois to see Pamela Barnes. Sam was more agitated, fidgety; he'd even pace around Jim's living room for hours on end, unable to sit still.
Then Sam had told me that the voices were there again.
I felt trapped between a rock and a hard place. I wanted to get Sam his meds but to do so I would have to call Dr. Calhoun and by now she had likely told John Walsh to put me on America's Most Wanted. If I called Sam's doc, she would insist I bring him back to Alexander's and there was no way I could do that. There would be far too many questions to answer, questions I didn't have convincing enough answers for.
Bobby had suggested 'borrowing' some medicine from the local pharmacy but that wouldn't work either. Anti-psychotics weren't exactly behind-the-counter quality if you know what I mean. It was some pretty heavy-duty shit.
All I could do was make sure Sam continued to take what Dr. Campion had given him and hope that somehow, I'd be able to get him better stuff.
I thought about calling up Jenny and asking her to get us some but decided against it. I didn't want her to get in trouble if she was caught; that sort of thing could result in her losing her job.
The only interesting thing to come out of this mess was the fact that Sam was drawing like a fiend. I had had to stop at Blue Earth's small stationary store to get more notebooks after my brother had filled up all of his current ones.
Sam's sketches often reflected his inner thoughts and feelings and from just a quick glance I knew he was distraught. Pictures of Jess as she had been in death- engulfed in flames- filled the creamy pages of the notebooks.
I felt so useless. I hated not being able to help my brother. But what could I do? It wasn't like I could wave a magic wand and make Sam's mental illness disappear.
Deciding that I wasn't tired enough to go back to sleep I crept downstairs and into the kitchen, following the buttery-yellow light into the room.
Jim was sitting at the table, a cup of tea and a saucer with a couple of homemade shortbread cookies sat before him.
"How's your brother?" he asked, brining the cup to his lips.
I shrugged and poured some hot water into a mug of my own, dunking a teabag into it a few times absentmindedly.
"I think he's getting worse."
Jim's eyes pinched in sympathy.
"Bobby knows a hunter- Jefferson- who may be able to help," he said quietly, "He was a medic in 'Nam. I'm sure he'll know where to go to get your brother something."
I appreciated the offer. I shook my head though.
"Sam's meds aren't like Tylenol and Advil, Jim," I told him, "You can't just substitute one for the other if you need to. Some of the stuff Sam takes has some unpleasant side-effects and we have to make sure Sam isn't allergic to it either."
I frowned, recalling one bad incident where Sam had been given a new medication- already not a great thing- that had trace amounts of shellfish in it- God only knows why- and had gone into anaphylaxis. Luckily, Sam was sketching in the rec room and both the nurse giving the other patients their pills- and the orderly watching out for everyone- were able to act quickly when my brother had the attack.
Needless to say Mom and I were as pissed as hell when we found out what had happened. Sam had an EpiPen but before then there had been no problem; all the employees were aware of any dietary restrictions in the patients but apparently no one thought to check the ingredient list on my brother's medication before giving it out.
Dr. Calhoun had been a simpering kiss-ass. She knew someone, somewhere had fucked up.
After that, the doctor made sure Sam's medications were checked and double-checked to prevent another mistake from happening. I think it wasn't so much that she cared about my brother but rather her own skin. I had threatened to charge her will negligence if anything like Sam's attack should ever happen again and that had shut the good doctor up for a while.
"Are you getting through to him at all?" Jim's question brought me back to the present and I sighed.
"Maybe," I muttered, "I don't know. It's hard, Jim. He's been through this same routine so many times I'm sure he's sick of it by now."
"Well, keep doing whatever it is you're doing. And let me know if you change your mind about Jefferson," the Pastor said and put his empty cup in the sink.
"You can have those if you like," he pointed to the cookies still sitting on the table.
"Thanks," I said and sat down, staring into the clear brown tea in my mug.
The tiny blonde-haired girl collapsed in a heap, dead before she hit the ground.
Azazel was becoming frustrated. His eyes flashed yellow as he turned his gaze on Meg, his daughter.
"I… don't know what to say, Father," the female demon said, hands held out in supplication, "One of these children should be able to open the Door."
"Clearly, something went wrong," the male demon growled angrily.
"There is one more," Barclay spoke up, surprising both Azazel and Meg.
"Sam Winchester," the large demon continued, "The final child."
Ah yes, Azazel remembered him.
Meg's eyes widened, sparkling gleefully.
Of course! Why hadn't she seen it before?
"Bring him here," Azazel ordered and both Meg and Barclay nodded, walking down the aisle past the pews, eager to please the other demon.
Alone, the yellow-eyed man stared down at the mural that had been constructed over the Door hundreds of years ago.
"Soon," he whispered, "You'll be free soon."
Sam cracked his knuckles, switching his pencil to his other hand and stared down at the picture he was currently sketching.
It showed an old, crumbling church, its stained-glass windows broken and its walls ivy-covered.
Dean glanced up at him from where he sat on the couch.
"You okay, Sammy?"
Sam shrugged and continued sketching, trying to ignore the voices.
I looked up at Bobby as he got off the phone with Rufus.
"Still nothing going on with demons," the grizzled hunter told me, "I don't know what to say. Nothing like this has happened before."
I frowned and peered into the living room where Sam sat with a notebook and a pencil.
"Something's going to happen," I admitted the strange feeling I'd been having. From years of patrolling the streets of Utica, I knew that when all the criminals were quiet, something as up.
Bobby gave me a look that said he was way ahead of me, "Can't do nothing about it though."
"Why not? Can't you, I don't know… let all the other hunters know what's going on?"
The hunter chuckled, "We're not exactly that organized, son."
I sighed tiredly, "I don't like this, Bobby. I really don't like this."
"I know, son," the hunter muttered.
Dean glanced down at the orange prescription bottle and then at Sam. The younger man fidgeted nervously. Dean turns his attention to Bobby.
"You sure these are kosher?"
The grizzled hunter nodded, "Jefferson knows what he's doing."
Popping open the childproof lid of the bottle, Dean shook a couple of plain white pills onto his palm.
"They up to your standards?" Bobby asked sarcastically and Dean gave him a withering look.
"Hopefully these will work, Sammy," Dean told his brother and Bobby handed the youngest Winchester a glass of water.
Sam's brother tipped the pills into his hand and the young man sighed. He hoped Dean was right and these new pills would make the voices go away, at least for a little while.
Dean and Bobby left Sam where he was, sitting in his usual chair with a pencil and notebook.
Sam closed his eyes and leaned his head against the back of the chair. He wanted to turn on Pastor Jim's phonograph but he didn't move.
Shut up, Sam thought tiredly, just shut up.
NO! Sam exclaimed silently and stood up, began pacing the floor in front of his chair. He wrung his hands nervously.
He knew it would take a while- sometimes as quick as a few days, other times it was as long as a month- for the new medication to begin to help.
Where was Dean? Sam didn't want to be alone.
Turning to the kitchen, he went into the room even though he knew his brother wouldn't be inside.
He stood in the middle of the room, brow furrowed. He was supposed to be looking for Dean.
Sam wrapped his arms around his abdomen and stepped forward. He just wanted the voices to stop. He was so tired of always being sick. He was tired of always being scared.
Sam walked over to the silverware drawer and stared down at the array of knives sitting inside.
He couldn't go back to Alexander's, not now- not that Sam wanted to return- and he couldn't live with Dean or their Dad. Dr. Calhoun would say that he wasn't well enough to be left alone.
Sam reached into the drawer and picked up a steak knife.
…know you have… to…
The voices were more insistent now, egging him on.
But he couldn't do it! He had failed in the past so why would it work now?
Sam lifted his hands to the sides of his head, fingers still clutching the knife and he let out a frustrated cry.
"SAM!" a voice- not one of the ones in his head- shouted and he turned around to see his brother standing in the doorway.
"Sammy, no," Dean stepped forwards, one hand outstretched, speaking to him as though he was a child.
"Give me the knife."
"D-Dean," Sam stammered, not moving.
Dean did not look happy. He looked angry. Sam had made Dean angry again.
"I w-wasn't-" Sam tried to explain but Dean interrupted, "The knife, Sam."
Sam, tears welling up in his eyes, lowered his hands and pointed the knife towards his brother.
Dean grabbed the utensil quickly and threw it across the room, into the living room.
"What the fuck?" he growled and Sam backed up at the sound.
"I w-wasn't… I wasn't… Y-You don't under… understand…" Sam stuttered, tears rolling down his face.
Dean's expression, though still angry, softened somewhat in sympathy.
"Don't you ever do that again! You hear me?"
Sam lowered his head, ashamed, and nodded.
"You scared the shit out of me, Sammy."
Dean approached his brother but when he went to touch Sam's arm, the younger man dodged his hand.
"Don't!" Sam exclaimed, "Please."
Dean lowered his hand and sighed, "C'mon."
He followed Sam as he walked from the kitchen.
Dean didn't let Sam leave his side for the rest of the day. He didn't tell Bobby or Jim what had happened- at least not while Sam was in the room- but the youngest Winchester could tell the hunters knew something was wrong.
Sam tried to hide in his hoodie and remain quiet.
He didn't even feel like drawing anymore.
Sam didn't argue with his brother when Dean told him to go to bed at 7 pm. He was used to going to bed early anyway and was thankful for the chance to be alone for a while, not having to see the disappointment in Dean's eyes anymore.
Sam pulled his jeans off and shrugged out of his sweater before sitting down on his bed, clad only in his boxer shorts. He ran a shaking hand through his hair and glanced down at his left wrist.
Sam examined the pale thin scars that criss-crossed his skin and grimaced. He vividly recalled the night he had first tried to kill himself at Alexander's. The patients were only given plastic cutlery to eat with but Sam had stolen a letter opener from the nurses' station near the front of the building.
He remembered feeling so helpless, so hopeless; nothing was going to get better, he would be in the hospital for the rest of his life.
Sam closed his eyes and closed his fingers over the scars on his wrist.
Sitting up, confused, Sam realized he'd fallen asleep on top of his bed. He rubbed his eyes and looked around. The blinds were open but no light shone through the window; it was nighttime.
No, please, Sam thought, just wishing the voices would stop. He stood up and turned to the bed, preparing to tug the blanket down and go back to sleep when the voice spoke up again.
Sam's eyebrows knitted in confusion. The voice sounded different. He didn't know how to explain it; he could have sworn he'd heard it before, and not in his head. This wasn't the same voice he had been hearing earlier.
Sam turned on his heel and walked to the window. He squinted outside, eyes fixed on the front lawn of the rectory.
Reeling back, Sam let out a frightened cry as he recognized two figures peering up at him.
"No," he moaned and tears filled his eyes.
"D'n," Sam choked and shook with fear.
The voice- Sam knew now that it belonged to Meg- was insistent and he recalled how easy it had been for his possessed father to enter the house.
… Yes… Come…
Feeling as though he had no other choice, Sam turned away from the window and walked out of his bedroom and down the hall. His footsteps were silent as he crept downstairs, hoping that Dean wouldn't hear. He didn't want his brother to get hurt.
Moving through the house on autopilot, Sam unlocked the front door and stepped outside.
"Hey, Sam, miss us?" Meg grinned, her eyes flashing pitch black in the darkness.
I couldn't sleep. Not when I felt like such a dick.
How was it that I had possibly prevented my brother from seriously hurting himself and yet I felt like the bad guy?
I lay in bed, staring at the ceiling, trying to think of something I could say to Sam to remind him that I was only concerned for him, that I wasn't pissed at him but the situation.
Sighing, I rolled over from my back to my side and closed my eyes. Maybe I could make it up to Sam tomorrow. Take him to the library perhaps. Sam would like that.
Sam stared up at the man with bright yellow eyes, Meg and Barclay on either side of him.
"Samuel Winchester," the yellow-eyed man announced, smirking, "Welcome."
The young man didn't reply. He shook. He was cold and scared.
"Wh-who are y-you?" he whimpered, his gaze never leaving those lemon-yellow eyes.
The man smiled condescendingly down at him, "All in good time. Now, first, I require a task of you."
Sam took a step back, his heartbeat speeding up sharply. The man with yellow eyes motioned for Sam to follow him and the young man does, walking down the middle aisle between the pews.
The stopped at the front of the church and the man pointed down to a mural on the floor. Sam glanced down and what appeared to be a woman with long blonde hair floating above a sea of flames. The woman was wearing a white dress and had a golden halo above her head, silvery wings spreading out from her shoulder blades. One of the angel's hands gripped a sword, its blade pointed toward the sky while her free hand was raised to the level of her breast, index and middle finger pointing upwards with the ring and pinkie fingers being held down by her thumb.
Sam looked up at the man, confused. Why had Meg and Barclay brought him here only to show him a piece of art?
"You must open the Door for me, boy," the yellow-eyed man told him.
Sam tried to back up but Meg grabbed his arm, hanging on, grinning.
"You're our last chance, Sammy," she told him, "I know you can do it. The others failed but I have faith in you."
"I c-can't," Sam stuttered, "I d-don't know how… please l-let me go."
"You will," the man told him sternly, "Do not disappoint me."
Sam lashed out when Meg began dragging him backwards, away from the yellow-eyed man.
"Please! Please!" Sam cried and Barclay strode forward and grabbed his flailing arm tightly.
The two demons manhandled Sam down a narrow set of stairs and shoved into a large, bare room with cracked tile floors; they were in the church basement. Sam glanced around and his heart leapt into his throat when he saw a dried brownish stain on the floor.
Meg and Barclay released Sam and the young man hugged the wall, terrified.
"P-please d-don't hurt me," he whimpered and Meg chuckled.
"You already know how this works, Sammy. We'll leave you alone just as soon as you open the Door for us."
I scrubbed a hand over my face and knocked lightly on Sam's door.
"Sammy? Hey, you awake?" I called, hoping Sam wasn't still upset with me.
"Sam?" I said louder when I didn't receive a response, "I'm coming in, okay?"
The doorknob turned easily in my hand and I blinked in surprise when I didn't see my brother.
Was he downstairs already?"
Turning, I stomped down the stairs and peered into the living room. No Sam. Same with the kitchen. I walked down the hall and peered into Jim's 'media' room but didn't think my brother would have anything to do with computers and the like.
"Sam?" I called, beginning to get nervous.
Back in the living room I looked at the closed basement door and my heart dropped into my stomach.
Oh no, I begged as I wrenched open the door, please don't let me find Sam down here… please let him-
My brother wasn't in the basement either.
Sam curled in on himself, tears and blood dripping down his face. Meg stared at him thoughtfully.
"Think we should bring him back up now?" Barclay asked, thick arms crossed over his chest.
"Hm… not just yet," the female demon commented and grinned toothily.
"Well, where the hell could he have gone to?" Bobby asked, scratching sleepily at his beard.
"I don't know!" I exclaimed, panic constricting my chest, "Jim, you know Blue Earth best-"
The Pastor nodded, "But you know Sam. Has he ever done something like this before? Where would he go to feel safe?"
Trust the two hunters to be as cool as cucumbers in this situation. Here I was, veteran cop, freaking out that my brother had run away.
"I don't know," I admitted, "Sam only really knows Alexander's… my place… our parents' house…"
It had been a while since my brother had been well enough to be out of the hospital and when he was, he stuck pretty close to home.
Jim's brow furrowed as he considered all the places Sam might end up.
"I can drive down to the church," he suggested, "See if he's there."
"Okay," I said and looked over helplessly at Bobby.
"I'll cruise around town," the grizzled hunter announced.
I nodded and sighed.
"Stay here, Dean," Jim told me, "In case Sam comes back."
I rolled my eyes. The Pastor didn't have to tell me twice.
Sam watched in fascination as crimson drops of blood fell onto the mural. On his hands and knees, the three demons towered over him.
"Open. The. Door," the yellow-eyed man's tone was short and clipped; he was clearly displeased with Sam.
"I… I… d-don't kn-kn-" Sam tried but couldn't manage to speak, he was shaking too much.
He gasped as Barclay grabbed his hair and pulled him up.
"Try again," the man with yellow-eyes told them, glaring at Sam.
"Nuh- No," Sam whispered, "Pl-please."
Was this my fault?
Did I make Sam run away?
I paced restlessly around the house, waiting.
I wondered if I should let Dad know. No, I decided, not yet. No use in worrying Dad if Sam turned up a couple of hours from now.
I sat down in my brother's favourite chair and stared despondently at one of his notebooks.
Come back, Sammy. Please.
Sam opened his eyes when he heard the door to the basement room lock behind the demons. He shivered and wiped his sweaty bangs off his forehead.
He wished he could just open their Door so Meg and Barclay would leave him alone.
Sam thought about what the demon had said before, about there being others who had failed. Others like him?
Sam suddenly recalled the portraits he had drawn and kept hidden from Dean after his brother had joked about a girl he was sketching. He had seen them in his dreams but he hadn't known who they were. He vividly recalled a girl with dark brown hair cut into a bob, a boy with blonde hair and at least three or four more.
Sam thought back to when he'd first been kidnapped by Meg and Barclay and how they were looking for something, waiting for something.
Sam thought about his strange new power that hadn't been there before. He recalled the hunters wondering if it wasn't natural at all, but something else.
Meg and Barclay had awakened his power! It made sense!
Was that what they needed now? To open their door?
Sam swallowed thickly and closed his eyes as his body was wracked with pain.
If only he could control his power than he could do what the man with the yellow eyes wanted and then maybe they would leave him alone.
I absentmindedly flipped through the pages of Sam's notebook, not really looking at the pictures too intently but just giving myself something to do.
Where are you, Sammy?
Sighing, I started to set the book back on the side table when a loose page slipped out and fluttered to the floor.
"Shit," I swore, not wanting my brother to know I had been looking through his things.
Half-sitting up, I grabbed the paper and flipped it over so I could see what Sam had drawn.
My heart stopped beating.
Sam struggled against the demons but he was too weak. Blinking blood from his eyes, the young man gazed down at the mural, focusing on the angel's benevolent face.
"Open the Door, Samuel," the yellow-eyed man demanded.
Barclay and Meg released Sam and he lowered himself to the floor. He bit his lip and tried to concentrate, tried to tell the door to open! open! open!
Sam's arms shook and he collapsed. Whimpering, he tried to get back up but he was too weak, was in too much pain.
Tears streamed down his cheeks and onto the mural beneath him, "I c-can't..."
Furious, the man grabbed Sam by the shoulders and heaved him up.
"You will open the Door, boy," the yellow-eyed demon snarled, "You just need some better persuasion perhaps. There is more than one way to skin a cat."
"Father?" Meg looked confusedly at the man but he held up a hand to silence her.
Sam struggled in the man's grasp, terrified. The yellow-eyed demon dragged Sam along with him as he headed towards the stairs.
Meg and Barclay followed, confused and excited at the same time.
Once they had entered the basement room, the man with yellow eyes shoved Sam away from himself and turned to face the two other demons.
Meg took a step forward, "But-"
She didn't have to be told a third time. Closing the door behind herself and Barclay, Meg disappeared upstairs, leaving Sam and Azazel alone.
I don't believe it.
I don't fucking believe it.
There. Right in front of me is a picture of my Mom's dream. Sketched out in black and white.
It was all there. The scene before the alter. I recognized two figures as Meg and Barclay from Sam's other sketches but the third figure I didn't know. The thing that caught my attention though, was the final figure. His head was lowered until his chin nearly touched his chest, his long hair obscuring his face but I knew without a doubt that that was Sammy.
Oh my God.
I grabbed my cell phone from my pocket and dialled Jim's number, telling him to get his ass back here now! and then did the same for Bobby.
I stared at the picture while I waited for the hunters to return, as though if I concentrated on it hard enough, I would be transported inside and to my brother.
"Dean! Son! What's that you've got there?" Bobby's voice rang through the rectory, startling me and I show him the sketch.
"Do you recognize anything?" I asked, hoping he would say yes.
The grizzled hunter took the picture from my clammy hands and studied it.
"Nothin' about the church itself particularly sticks out," he admitted, "But maybe Jim'll know."
We waited an agonizing ten minutes before the Pastor returned and then I was practically shoving the paper in his face.
"Please say something jumps out at you," I nearly begged, feeling so close, yet so far from Sammy.
Jim frowned and my heart skipped a beat. Shanking his head, Jim sighed, "I'm sorry, Dean, its just not detailed enough to be any church I recognize."
I lowered my head, defeated. There must be thousands of churches in the country, even abandoned ones. There was no way we'd find Sam.
"Hold on," Jim muttered and walked purposefully into the kitchen. Rummaging in the junk drawer he pulled out a magnifying glass and squinted through it at the sketch.
"I'll be damned," he whispered, startling me.
"What is it?" Bobby asked and I leaned over the table, my nose inches from the paper.
"See, underneath that window?" Jim pointed to one of the broken stained-glass windows Sam had drawn across from the alter.
"Yeah," I mumbled, "What about it?"
"Here," Jim handed me the magnifying glass and I stared at the sketch of the window, "Look under the sill."
I did as he asked and saw, in minute writing, some Latin phrase that was beyond my comprehension.
"Sam doesn't know any Latin," I looked up and set the glass aside.
"He didn't have to know what it means," Jim explained, "That plaque was given to the church by Pope John Paul II when he visited. I know what church it is."
"What?" Bobby asked.
"St. Mary's in Ilchester."
"Now, Samuel," Azazel said, "Be a good boy and open the Door."
Meg watched the young man. He was sitting up on his knees in front of the mural, head down, shoulders hitching as he cried.
"I don't think you want to do that again," the demon continued and Sam shook his head frantically, "So, open the Door and I won't hurt you."
Sam held out a trembling, blood-smeared hand and Meg caught her breath, leaning forward eagerly.
The young man made a choking sound and lowered his hand, ducking his head.
Azazel swept past Meg, towards Sam and grabbed a handful of the young man's hair.
"No! Please! L-let me try a-a-again!" he cried and turned hurt eyes on Meg as though she would help him.
The female demon didn't react as her father dragged Sam back downstairs, the young man pleading the entire time.
I hate flying.
I really, really hate it.
Okay, well, it isn't so much a hate as a fear.
I'm terrified to fly but goddamn it I would do it for Sam.
I had told Bobby and Jim as such so thirty minutes later I found myself on a flight headed straight for Maryland.
To drive all the way to Ilchester would take almost eighteen hours but by plane, it only took two and a half.
I fidgeted anxiously in my seat, earning concerned glances from the Pastor.
"I'm fine," I growled when he asked me for the fiftieth time if I was alright.
I'd be so much better once we landed.
Actually, I'd be fucking perfect once I had Sam safe with me again.
Sam couldn't even think straight. He stared down at the mural of the angel and wondered how he ever thought she looked benevolent in the first place. Upon further scrutiny, Sam realized that the angel looked unkind, angry, evil.
"The Door," Azazel prompted and Sam flinched, whimpering.
Sam touched the mural, smearing blood across the angel's white dress.
He had to do this. He couldn't take it anymore.
Sam closed his eyes and concentrated as hard as he could.
Open. Open. Just open. Please. Please open.
Sam's eyes shot open when he heard a grinding sound and he saw one of the marble columns used to support the intricate church ceiling, had a large crack slashing down its length.
Open. Open. Please. Please.
The plywood covering the broken windows shuddered, nails popping out and dropping to the moth-eaten carpet.
Please. Open. Let this end. Please.
Sam scrambled back in fear when the mural began to glow with blinding white light. He raised a hand to shield his eyes from the brightness and then clapped both palms to his ears when a high-pitched ringing filled the church.
Looking fearfully over his shoulder, Sam saw the demons were still there, all three with a gleefully look upon his or her face.
Realizing now was his one chance to escape, the young man dove between two pews and crawled painfully on his hands and knees away from the demons and the Door.
The keening sound seemed to grow louder and louder and Sam groaned in pain, his eardrums surely bleeding.
He took a risk and peeked over the top of one pew. The demons still hadn't noticed him. That, or they no longer cared about him.
Agonizingly slow, Sam crawled towards the doors of the church, biting down on his lower lip to keep from crying out.
Tears continued to leak from his swollen, burning eyes, making it difficult to see, but Sam pressed onwards. He didn't know what was happening and he didn't want to be in the church when whatever was on the other side of the door came out.
Sam staggered to the front doors and tried to pull them open, only to find them locked fast.
"No," he whispered, desperately, "No, no, please. No."
Sam tugged again but the doors refused to move. He glanced to the side and saw a plywood covered window and rushed to it. Digging his nails in, he tried to pry the wood away from the empty windowsill.
The shriek grew louder still and Sam fell to his knees, his strength waning fast. Falling onto his side, he stared dazedly at the bright light coming up from the mural, the demons black silhouettes against its glow.
I jumped from the rental car even before it had stopped moving and dashed towards the church, not even pausing to look to the sky, where a feakin' search light was ascending from somewhere inside the building.
"SAMMY!" I shouted as loudly as I could, trying to make my voice heard over the strange high, whistling sound.
I slammed into the church's double doors and yanked on the handles with all my strength.
"Dean! Get away from there!" I heard Bobby's warning as though he was shouting at me from one end of a long tunnel. I ignored him. I had to get to my brother.
I gasped when I felt someone- Bobby- tackle me to the ground and begin to drag me away from the church doors.
"What are you doing? Let me go! SAMMY! SAM-"
My voice was cut off when the church exploded.
Bobby and I were flung backwards into the street. Dazed, but unhurt- my ears ringing like a son of a bitch- I scrambled to my feet and stared at…
Nothing. The church was gone. Only a mound of smouldering rubble remained.
"NO! NOOO!" I cried and started towards the site. I didn't make it. My knees collapse under my weight and I sank onto the burnt grass of the lawn.
Dimly I could hear Bobby and Jim calling my name and the wail of emergency vehicles but I ignored them all.
Sam, my little brother, was gone.
I hadn't been able to protect him like I'd promised to do.
I was a failure.
"S-Sammy," I sobbed, "Sammy… no… please…"
I felt a strong hand grip my shoulder and allowed Bobby to help me stand.
"C'mon Dean," he murmured sadly, "C'mon son."
I turned around and peered at the ruins behind me.
Sam couldn't be gone. He just couldn't. Not now. Not after everything.
Bobby guided me to sit in the rental car- its windows blow out from the explosion- and Jim turned on the radio.
I smiled tearfully when the Beatles' song 'Blackbird' came on; it was one of Sam's favourites and I turned away from the church, leaning my brow against the headrest of the front seat.
I closed my eyes and listened to the music as tears dripped down my face and onto the floor of the car.
"I'm so sorry, Sammy…"
1. Thanks to BranchSuper, DeanCasLover22, SPN Mum, and L.A.H.H for reviewing.
2. Thanks to everyone who alerted, followed and favourited.
3. I know that the character of Azazel is different from what he's like in the show. Sorry if you were hoping for more of a Supernatural-like 'Yellow-Eyes'. I just can't seem to make him that way for this fanfic. Also, Azazel wanted to open the Devil's Gate but this one is trying to release Lucifer. Remember, this is an AU so the plot is not exactly like that of the show. I plan to write a sequel, called Smoke and Mirrors, but you may have to wait a while for it; I have other fanfics I want to get down before coming back to this 'verse.
4. Thank you all so much for your support. Please feel free to leave some final thoughts.