A snippet to celebrate Dean Winchester's birthday today, January 24.

Disclaimer: To my everlasting despair, I own nothing related to Supernatural.


BIRTHDAY PAST

By: Vanessa Sgroi

Dean Winchester, a newly-minted four-year-old as of today, trailed after his mother into the kitchen, watching while she rinsed their dinner dishes in the sink. To the little boy's delight, she had made his favorite dinner—macaroni and cheese. Even though she'd also made peas to go with it, he made sure to eat every single tiny green sphere on his plate so as not to jeopardize the generous serving of birthday cake and ice cream that was to come.

"Mommy?"

"Yes, Dean?"

"Is it time for cake yet?" He eyed the merrily decorated confection situated up on the counter next to the refrigerator. Four—he knew it was four because he was a big boy and could count—four blue candles stood at its center.

"Not yet, sweetie."

"Why not?"

Mary finished the rinsing the last dish and placed it in the drainer. Wiping her hands on a nearby hand towel, she bent forward and smiled, her eyes full of sparkle. She kissed his forehead. "Because right now it's time to open your present. You do want to open your birthday present, don't you?"

Dean's green eyes lit up. He already knew what he was getting; Mommy and Daddy had told him the big secret yesterday. And he'd already seen the big, big box sitting in the living room with a bow on top. "YES! I open my present first."

Mary laughed and took Dean's hand. "Well then, that's just what we'll go do."

Once in the living room, the little boy dropped his mother's hand and hurried to the wrapped box, dropping to his knees before it. "Daddy, Mommy says it's time for me to open my present now! THEN we can have cake and ice cream!"

John chuckled at his son's enthusiasm. "Did she now?" He looked at Mary and winked. "Well, who can argue with Mommy? Let's see what you got."

Dean tore into the brightly-colored paper anxious to get to the goods inside. Once the paper was gone, his little hands worked at the cardboard flaps until they gave. Breathless with excitement, he reached in and pulled out a giant Tonka truck; its sunny yellow paint gleamed in the ambient light. Dean stopped short of pulling it all the way out of the box though, a perplexed, if not discontent, look settling on his young face. Lifting the box slightly, he peered into its depths.

Noticing the odd look, a small frown creased Mary's brow. "What's wrong, Deanie? Don't you like your present? I thought you wanted a Tonka truck."

Disappointed, Dean mumbled, "Yeah…but where's my baby brother? You-n-Daddy told me yesterday I was getting a baby brother. Did you forget?"

Not having considered the timing of their announcement to their son yesterday that there'd be a new addition to the family, Mary and John looked at each other, biting their lips to keep from laughing good-naturedly at Dean's misconception. Mary crouched down next to him and pulled him into a hug. "No, sweetie, we didn't forget."

The little boy reared back a little, blond curls falling over his forehead. "You changed your mind?" Dean asked, aghast. His tiny voice was as appalled as a four-year-old's could possibly be.

At this Mary did giggle. She tucked a strand of her blonde hair behind her ear. "No, we didn't change our minds." She patted her tummy. "Your little brother or sister just needs some more time to grow before coming to join us."

Dean looked at her tummy then back at her face, not quite understanding. He eyed her warily. "You sure? 'Cause you promised I was getting a baby brother."

Amused at Dean's insistence that the coming baby was going to be a boy, Mary gave her firstborn a comforting squeeze. "I'm sure. We just have to be patient."

The little boy sighed dramatically. "Okay. I guess I can play with my truck then."

Mary let him go and stood. "Now—why don't we go have some of that yummy chocolate cake out there?"

"YEAH, cake!" Dean ran for the kitchen.

"Dean, you wait for us!" admonished Mary as she watched her towheaded son race ahead, "no pulling a chair over to the counter!"

As John came to stand behind her, Mary felt a slight quickening in her belly and she rested a hand there, gently rubbing small circles. "Something tells me he's going to be a great big brother." She grinned. "Are we up to handling another boy?"

Strong arms wrapped around her in a snug embrace. "Absolutely."

FIN