Two days later.

Dean usually skipped the local news. But this particular anchor, with her wide, blue eyes and pouty lips, well… the way she talked about the horrible accident on 94 made him care an awful lot.

As her voice intercut with images of flashing emergency lights and wet pavement, Dean began to feel the suggestion of sleep prick the back of his eyes, days of tension finally easing and giving way. He let his head drift back against the headboard, fumbling with his hand along the bedspread next to him for the remote.

When Dean brought the button up toward the screen, his reporter girlfriend had moved on to her next story. He paused and then sat forward in surprise at video footage of a man he recognized as Liberty being handcuffed and guided toward a police vehicle.

"… being held in connection with alleged kidnapping and related drug charges. The men in custody are reported to be—"

"Hey, Sam!" Dean started to say, wanting his brother to have the poetic satisfaction of seeing this jackass being led around in handcuffs of his own. He was slightly disappointed to see Sam already deeply asleep, with his face half-buried in the pillow. Weird, he hadn't even noticed him dozing off. Dean shrugged and moved his thumb toward the "off" button just as the video footage cut back to the newsroom.

"The statement issued by the accused," said the blonde anchor, her blue eyes looking wide and serious into the camera, "was directed at one Dean Winchester. Dean. I offered you a pass, mate. You should have taken it."

Dean gasped awake suddenly, his heart hammering in his throat, tearing at the twisted knot of blankets that had managed to wrap themselves around him while he slept. He felt hands on his shoulders, and he pushed back, striking out blindly. The hands were holding him, holding his arms and he panicked until he realized.

Sam. They were Sam's hands. Sam's voice. "Dean! Jesus, Dean, calm down, okay?"

He blinked, breathing hard. He rolled over to the other side of the bed, away from Sam, away from the embarrassment at the extent of his freak out. "Sorry," he mumbled.

"What the hell was that?"

"I don't know. Just. Bad dream. Forget it."

"Do you—"

"No, I don't want to talk about it." Dean snapped. He ran a tired hand over his face. "Sorry. I don't mean to be like that. I just really," he looked back at Sam for emphasis. "Really don't."


Dean took a breath. He looked over at the screen of the TV, clouded over with busily dancing dots of static. "Sam, first thing tomorrow, we're putting road between us and this town, okay?"

Sam grinned. "Yeah, whatever you need, man."