AN:I own nothing and no copyright infringement intended. This is the first story I have ever written for Supernatural. Please let me know what you think. Thanks, Snarks.


Rolling the Dice

Sam sat in the back seat of the Impala, resting his head against the cool window and watching the passing scenery with a feeling of complete detachment. Dean and John were both up front talking about their latest conquests with an enthusiasm that Sam wished he had for anything in life. He never felt that way anymore, hadn't for a long time. Maybe he had just seen too much death or too many unhappy endings to feel anything close to okay anymore. Things just seemed to affect him more, lately.

He imagined a doctor might call him depressed, but really, he was far beyond it. He was lost, lost somewhere in fire and pain and bodies stuck to ceilings. Where he was now, there was no hope, no path back to the life he once had and he knew it. All he wanted was to find a way to end the pain, but he was too much of a coward to just do it, to just take his knife and slice his wrists or take a gun and place a bullet squarely through the roof of his mouth. No, he wasn't that strong. Instead, he threw himself into the job, hoping against hope that fate would find an end for him, that he would finally get a rest from it all in perfect darkness.

The car came to halt, jostling Sam's mind back to the present. He scrubbed a hand over his face and looked out the window, taking in their surroundings. They were at a cheap, dated motel, one that came complete with a flickering neon sign that said 'vacancy.' It was all very Hitchcock.

Once they had unpacked and prepped their weapons, they set out to hunt down some intel on exactly what was wreaking havoc on the little town. It didn't take long before they confirmed that the string of recent deaths weren't just accidents. Something was preying on people, specifically people who were in the town park after dark.

It made finding the thing easy enough. All they had to do was go to the park and wait it out. They packed enough weapons that they had most of the likely suspects covered.

"Sam, are you paying attention?" Dean asked, punching him in the arm. "Dad said to go around the embankment and watch the hill."

"Oh, yeah, sorry."

Dean shook his head. "What's up with you lately?"

"Me? Nothing."

Dean gave him an appraising stare. "Whatever, man. Just get your head in the game, all right?"

Sam nodded. Grabbing his shotgun, he crept over to the embankment and took position.

Sighing, he leaned back against a rock, holding the gun tightly in his hands. It would be easy to end it. All he would have to do was reload with a slug instead of the salt. It was peaceful in the woods. And being outside, the mess would be washed away with the rain. It would be so simple.

But he couldn't. He just didn't have it in him.

A rustling in the distance caught his attention and he focused in on it. Whatever it was, it was close.

The sound stopped and Sam looked around. Another branch broke and he stood. He caught sight of something moving in the shadows.

"Sam, you hear that?" Dean called from across the small clearing of trees.

"Yeah, it seems like it's moving closer."

"Same thing I thought." Dean said. "Have you seen Dad?"

"No, I thought he was still up with you."

Dean leaned back against a tree and shook his head. "Shit."

Something crashed in the darkness and they fell silent, listening. Sam stepped out from the protection of the embankment. Adrenaline coursed through his veins, making everything seem a bit sharper.

A shadowed figure charged forward, making a beeline for Dean. Time seemed to slow as so many things happened at once. Dean pulled up his shotgun just as Sam lunged forward, shoving his gun into the figures chest. The figure reached up and grabbed Sam's throat, twisting his neck. Sam choked and sputtered, but didn't pull the trigger. Dean yelled for Sam to shoot and Sam smiled as he knew the darkness he wished for was so close.

He could feel the world fading to black and he was all right with that. He welcomed it. Fighting all the training that had been engrained in him from an early age, he let the gun tumble from his hands and he closed his eyes. It would all be over soon.

Except it wasn't.

A Shot rang out and the hand that was holding him suddenly went lax and he fell to his knees. There were more gunshots, and then the only sound was Sam's raspy pants for breath.

"What in the fucking fuck was that?" Dean said, running over to Sam.

Their father was there in front of him, leaning over the dead creature. "A night walker, nasty one at that."

Sam looked over at the creature, its claw like fingers reaching out toward him still.

His father looked over at Sam, and probably seeing the pained expression, said, "Sam, are you all right?"

"Yeah, dad, I'm fine." And that fact seemed like a painful truth. He didn't want to be fine. He was so close, and to have it fail … it just didn't seem fair.

"What the hell is wrong with you, Sammy!" Dean shouted. "That thing could have killed you. I had a shot! You had a shot!"

"I'm sorry. I wasn't thinking."

"Hell right you weren't thinking. What's going on with you? That was a rookie mistake."

"Dean," his father warned. "Take it easy."

"No, dad. Something's been up with him for weeks. This isn't the first time he's done something like this, look at his damned shoulder for Christ's sake."

How could he forget? It had been a moment much like this one where he tossed the dice and tried to let fate decide. He had thrown himself in front of a ghoul to save his father, or at least that's what he told himself. He came out of the whole ordeal with only a dislocated shoulder, some angry bruises, and a very pissed off Dean that then spent the better part of the afternoon lecturing him about the importance of not being an idiot during a fight.

"Sam?" his father said quietly. "What happened?"

Sam, still on his knees, looked away from their scrutinizing gaze. "It's not … I didn't …" Sam pushed himself up to his feet. "Never mind. You know what? It's nothing," he said, brushing his hands off on his jeans and wincing at the sudden shooting pain in his hand.

"You all right?" Dean asked.

Sam pushed himself to stand, cradling his hand. It was starting to throb. He must have fallen on it when the creature dropped him. "I think so, just a sprain. It's nothing, really."

Dean licked his lips, shaking his head. "You practically offered your head up on a silver platter back there. That isn't nothing."

"I wasn't trying to … I mean, I wasn't trying to get hurt or anything."

"Then what were you trying to do? Kill yourself?" Dean asked sharply. "Because I can't see what else you were doing since it sure as hell wasn't fighting."

It was like someone had doused him with ice water. He sucked in a breath and looked away, closing his eyes. He felt ashamed. He had let his family down again. Everything felt like it was pushing in on him.

"Sam," his father said from beside him. "You weren't trying to hurt yourself, were you?"

Sam sighed, running a hand through is hair. "Do we have to talk about this?"

"God, you were. You were trying to …" Dean trailed off, looking disgusted.

Feeling completely exposed, Sam stepped away, wrapping his arms tightly around himself. "Please, can I just have a minute alone?"

Dean crossed his arms over his chest. "Yeah, go ahead. We'll be right here."

Sam raised a brow. "Alone?"

"I'm sorry, son," John said, stepping closer, "but we aren't leaving you."

Tears began to prick at Sam's eyes and he bit his lip, trying to fight back the painful sob building in his chest. "Please, can we just go then?"

"Sam, why?" Dean asked. "Why would you … You're my brother."

"I'm sorry." Sam shook his head. "I never meant … it's just never quiet anymore."

Dean cocked his head to the side. "What do you mean?"

"My mind, it never stops. The fire, the bodies, Jess, mom, it never goes away."

John scrubbed a hand over his face. "Jesus, Sam, why didn't you say something sooner? We could have helped you."

Sam shrugged. "I don't know. I guess I didn't know what to say. I didn't want you to think I was crazy or …" he paused, running his good hand through is hair. "I thought I could deal with it on my own."

"How long, Sam?" Dean asked. "How long have you hiding this shit from us, from me?"

Sam looked down and blinked, shrugging a shoulder. "A few months."

"Shit," Dean said under his breath, shaking his head. "How did I not see this?"

Sam felt ashamed of himself, of what he done or almost done. But the worst part was he still wanted to do it, he still wanted to end it all. If anything, being so exposed made him want to just curl up with his gun and stop the pain and worthlessness for good. What kind of brother was he?

A tear rolled down Sam's cheek, and he tried to wipe it away before they saw it, but it was too late.

"Sam," John said quietly, stepping forward.

Sam tried to step back but he stumbled over the dead body and cringed back.

Dean reached out and grabbed his arm. "Easy, Sam. Just take a few slow breaths for me, okay?"

Sam furrowed his brow, looking confused. It wasn't until Dean placed a hand on his chest and pressed down that he realized how fast his breathing had become.

Sam looked up at Dean, tears in his eyes. "It just hurts so much."

"I know it does, but we're going to try and work on that, okay?"

Dean reached out and gave Sam's shoulder a squeeze.

Sam nodded, wiping his eyes with his sleeve. "Yeah."

"Come on," Dean said, putting a hand on his back and guiding him forward. "Let's go take a look at that hand."

For the first time in a long time, some of the weight he had been carrying with him lifted and he didn't feel quite so alone. Things weren't going to be easy and they'd probably never be perfect, but that's was all right, because he wasn't alone anymore.