A/N: The (longer) final chapter for this story...
Love Express (Chapter 10) by frostygossamer
There was silence in the SUV for several long miles after they finally pulled away from that gas station. Unfortunately the silence couldn't last.
"Is it something you do on purpose?" Sam began in a grouchy tone. "Or do you just naturally attract trouble like some kinduva hassle-magnet?"
Dean exhaled slowly, deciding that saying nothing was probably the best option.
"First you get your ass arrested, then you make me think you've gotten yourself abducted. Is that it? Are we done for the day?"
Dean realized he was going to have to say something.
"Sam, I know I messed up," he said. "I apologized. What more can I do?"
Sam snorted. "Reckon what we oughta do is shut up and drive, and see if we can't get to our destination before anything else freakish happens. OK?"
Dean nodded. "Sure," he said, and settled down to pretend to get some sleep.
Sam drove on through the afternoon, evening and twilight. When they got into the outskirts of Palo Alto, it was already dark. Dean was woken from his doze by the more random movements of the SUV through residential streets.
"We there?" he asked, stretching.
"Yep," Sam replied, sounding perfectly normal.
Dean hoped the guy had gotten over his mad ranting phase. He fished a street plan out of the glovebox and, spotting a street sign go by, located them on the map.
"Third turn on the left and then second right," he said.
A few minutes later, they pulled up in front of the entrance to a small gated community.
"Guess we're home," Dean remarked.
Sam smiled at him. He actually smiled. "Home," he repeated.
Sam honked the ute's horn, expecting some response from the little security booth next to the gate. Getting no immediate answer, he got out and walked over to the gate.
"Hey," he shouted. "Anyone on duty?"
His Faculty Head and ex-partner, Dave Mann, was supposed to have organized this. Someone was supposed to be expecting them.
"Wait just a minute," came a gruff voice from behind the booth and a tubby young guy in uniform emerged, holding a half-eaten slab of pizza. "What's your hurry?"
Sam rolled his eyes heavenward. "We're moving in today," he said. "Name of Winchester?"
"That right?" the gatekeeper muttered as he waddled into his booth. "Then you'll be on my roster."
The guy put down his pizza, unhooked a clipboard from a nail on the booth's wall and studied it.
"Humph," he grunted. "No 'Winchester' down here."
Sam shook his head in disbelief. "This was all supposed to be prearranged," he insisted.
The guy waved the clipboard at him. "No 'Winchester'," he repeated.
"Got ANYONE down for moving in today?" Dean asked, climbing out of the SUV. "Someone mixed up the names maybe?"
The guy looked at his list again. "Maybe," he admitted, guardedly. "But that don't mean it's YOU."
Dean shrugged. The guard didn't seem to want to be helpful.
Sam tried another tack. "The let was arranged by my boss, Professor David Mann. You wanna ring him and clear this up?"
The guy gave him a wary look. "That name don't ring no bells either," he said.
"Ring him," Sam insisted.
The guard huffed and picked up his local phone book. Leafing through it slowly he located Sam's ex's number and dialled it with deliberation.
"Hi," he began, "This is gate security at the California Beauty gated community on Sassafras Street. I have a query about a new arrival?"
There was a pause while he listened to the other end of the line.
"He wants me to describe you," he told Sam, after a minute.
Sam moved a little closer so the guard could see him better. The guy looked him up and down.
"Close on seven feet, built like Sulley, long floppy hair like Mufasa," he said. "And kinda touchy," he added when Sam shot him a glare.
He held the receiver away from his ear to minimize the answering bellow. Sam chuckled. That was SO Dave.
After a minute, the guard put down his phone. "Guess it's OK," he begrudged. "Wanna get back in your vehicle? I'll unlock the gates."
Sam and Dean got back in the SUV while the guy operated the electronic gate mechanism. Then, as they rolled onto private property, he had the cheek to salute them.
"That's one guy who better not expect a Christmas gift from me this year," commented Sam.
Their new home was a bijou two-storey affair at the east end of the estate. Sam parked the ute outside, and they got out and surveyed the front prospect.
"Looks OK," Sam ventured.
Dean nodded. "Stayed in a lot worse," he commented.
Sam took the envelope containing the house keys out of the SUV's glove compartment, and made to unlock the front door. Dean walked up to him and put his hand on Sam's.
"First place together" he said, meaningfully.
Sam grinned and they turned the key together, opening the door onto a tastefully decorated hall.
"Looks great," Dean approved, checking out the hall and a couple reception rooms, "Only, gotta find the john. Long drive, huh?" and he disappeared up the stairs to search out the bathroom.
Sam walked through to the kitchen, a well-appointed installation that reminded him of the studio kitchens you see on TV cookery shows.
"Nice," he remarked to himself.
Sam looked in the refrigerator. Fresh eggs, ham, mushrooms, maybe he should make an omelet? It was a while since they had eaten. He rummaged around in the cabinets for a suitable pan.
"Hey! Sam!" came a call from upstairs.
Sam put down the frypan and went to the bottom of the stairs.
"Problem?" he asked.
"Problem? No. But you gotta come see this," Dean answered.
Sam walked up the stairs, where he found a trail of Dean's hastily discarded clothing, leading to what was apparently the bathroom door. He turned the knob and peeked in. Dean was standing in the middle of the room, wearing nothing but a childishly gleeful grin.
"Dude, it's a wet room," he announced. "No cubicle, no curtain, no nothing. You just stand right here and get wet," and he demonstrated by turning on the ceiling-mounted shower head and letting the hot water pour all over his naked body. "See?"
Oh yeah, Sam could see all right. In two seconds his clothes had joined Dean's, and he was grabbing the guy under that steaming waterfall.
"Hey, Sam, you tryna Shawshank me in here?" Dean protested, taken by surprise.
Sam pulled Dean against his body and kissed him forcefully. "You objecting?" he asked.
Dean chuckled. "Hell no. Only, not sure we got the energy. Dunno 'bout you, but I'm a little beat for bumming right now."
Sam loosened his hold on the shorter guy and pouted. "Don't wanna christen the facilities, huh?"
"Maybe tomorrow," Dean answered, with a grin. "Tonight what I want is a shower and something to eat then bed. To sleep. Sorry, Sammy."
Sam let him go reluctantly. "OK," he said. "But you gotta help me out with this first," glancing down at the impressive edifice he was sporting.
Dean snickered. "Now THAT I can help you with," he said, grabbing the shower gel. "Gonna lather you up and get you real clean, you dirty f**ker."
"Like the way you think," responded Sam.
Dean poured the gel over Sam's strong shoulders, making it dribble down over his back and chest. Reaching around, he smeared the fresh-smelling man-fragranced goo over Sam's broad back, while the slick slurping down his chest smudged between them. Grabbing the bottle from him, Sam blobbed a dollop in his palm and used it to anoint the firm round globes of Dean's butt.
Pretty soon they were covered all over in a slippery froth, their bodies sliding easily together. Dean combed a little gel into Sam's hair with his fingers, smoothing the wet locks back from his manly face as he placed his hands on Sam's ears and pulled him down into a kiss. He squeezed his eyes tight shut as the warm soothing spray rinsed the foam down over both their faces, pooling foam at their feet, where it disappeared down the central drain.
Dean wrapped a firm fist around Sam's little problem and gently relieved him of his predicament with long easy strokes, making him moan softly against Dean's shoulder as he let go. Feeling lucky, Sam chanced his thumb between Dean's ass-cheeks, teasing his little hole, but Dean batted him away.
"Nah-ah-ah," he scolded. "Not yet, tiger. Wait till we get in bed, then maybe..."
Sam responded by reaching up and redirecting the nozzle directly onto Dean's head, swamping him. Then he generously leaned in to prevent him drowning by giving him the kiss of life, sharing his oxygen with the gasping flounder. Dean shoved him away playfully, grabbing a large towel from the glass cabinet and walloping him with it. Sam grabbed the end of the towel and pulled Dean back toward him, grasping him by the waist.
"C'mon. Let's get dry," Dean begged. "Dude, I need food. Right now. Or I'm gonna slip down that freakin' drain."
Sam guffawed. "Don't worry, man. You won't go down. Your big damn head'll get stuck."
He unfurled the huge towel and wrapped it around them both, rubbing over Dean's back and butt.
"Gonna make you the best damn omelet you ever tasted," he promised.
They were sitting in their new kitchen, stuffing in big forkfuls of fluffy omelet, created with love by Sam.
"So. This David Mann guy, you and he used to be a couple, right?" Dean probed.
Sam nodded. "Dave was one of my professors. My mentor, you could say. We hit it off. After I graduated, I moved in."
Dean gave that a moment's thought. Dave had been Sam's 'husband'. Now Sam was his, kind of. What did that make him? Did it even work that way? He was still pretty naive about gay lifestyles.
"And now he's the head of your department, your boss?" he asked.
"Head of Faculty, yes," Sam agreed. "That promotion was the start of the end for us."
"Hmm," Dean responded, growing thoughtful. "So. It's definitely over? Between you two?"
Sam had to smile. Was Dean feeling a little jealous?
"Over like yesterday's news," he answered firmly.
"Good," Dean responded. "Cos I want 'Sam and Dean' to be an expression, like 'Batman and Robin', 'Butch and Sundance'..."
"You mean like 'Bonnie and Clyde', 'Harry and Sally', 'Rocky and Adrian'," Sam corrected him.
Dean snorted. "Like two guys," he grouched. "Like a freakin' team. Right down the line."
Sam nodded. "Me too," he agreed. "I don't do hook-ups or one-nighters or summer flings. I do love or nothing, and I don't wanna get hurt again. But, dude, you're gonna have to get your act together, if you wanna be my team-mate."
Dean raised a questioning eyebrow.
"Because right now," Sam continued, "you're still acting like you're on your own, a free agent with no one else to think about. And that's not true anymore. Gotta stop running off without a word or pretending we're not together. Got me now, and you gotta remember that if you're serious about us."
Dean sighed. "Damn right I'm serious," he insisted. "Really want this to work, Sammy. You know I'm still kinda green with this 'gay' thing, but I WANT this. Swapped sides for this gig. Wouldn't have done that if I wasn't damn sure I NEEDED to be with you."
Sam was touched. He reached for Dean's hand.
"You know, I don't let just anyone call me 'Sammy'. Not even Dave got away with that," he said. "But somehow, from your mouth, baby, it sounds so right."
Dean chuckled. "That's because it IS right," he said, leaning across to kiss Sam on the lips. "C'mon. Bed."
They piled into the big king-sized bed in the master bedroom. They were both feeling amazed that they were finally there, in their new home, and in one piece. Tomorrow they were going to begin a life together.
Dean settled in the middle of the bed and pulled Sam closer so he was laying on his back, propped up on Dean's chest. Sam closed his eyes and exhaled deeply, comfortable in the arms of his lover. Dean raked his fingers through Sam's long hair soothingly.
"Mmm," Sam murmured.
"You still wanna get frisky?" Dean asked lazily.
"Nah," Sam replied. "I'm good. Got the rest of our lives, baby."
That was a beautiful thought. They had the rest of their lives to love, and be loved by, each other. It was a thought that Dean ruminated on.
After a while, as they lay together in the drowsy dark, Dean broke the silence with a confession. Not an easy thing for Dean, but he sensed this was the right time to open up, as much as he was able.
"You know, the reason me and Jo broke up wasn't because I cheated on her," he said. "Not that I didn't cheat on her, kinda. It was because she'd had enough of me not being up-front, keeping crap to myself. Hoarding my secrets, she called it."
Sam turned his face toward him and smiled in the darkness. "Know what she meant," he whispered.
Dean pressed on, "Know I got this problem. Turn inward when things get tough, get closed off."
Sam reached across and took Dean's hand in his, squeezing it gently. "Yep," he agreed.
Dean sighed. "Get that from my dad. After we lost Mom, he just kinda sucked it all inside like some kinda giant black hole for emotions. Guess he expected me to be the same way."
Sam had already heard a little about John, and he really felt for him.
"You had it rough, baby," he sympathized.
Dean shook his head. "But I DO get it. And I'm not gonna make that same mistake again. Gonna try, Sammy, try my best to share. Because I... couldn't bear to lose you. Gotta help me."
Sam rolled over and pulled Dean into a hug, cradling him close.
"Baby," he said. "We're in this together. Bad times are over. Good times from now on."
And somehow he knew they would be.
A/N: That ends the second part of the trilogy. Yes, I'm going to make it a trilogy. I'm thinking I want to know how Dean settles into a college campus life. So keep your eyes open.