Dean shot the girl a winning smile, then turned quickly back to his brother. 'Sam, why don't you take the car and head out? I'll give you a call later tonight.' He waggled his eyebrows. Sam frowned.

'You- seriously?'

Dean widened his eyes and dropped his voice to a hiss. 'Yeah, I'm serious! Dude, look at her!' He gestured over his shoulder at the brunette, whose house was definitely not haunted. Just full of rats in the basement. 'She's totally into me! I'm so in here! Just go find a motel, okay? Do your geek thing, watch some porn, call Cas if anything bad happens and only- got this? Only call me if something really bad happens, cuz when we were checking out her bedroom earlier I saw some handcuffs under the bed.'

Sam's face wrinkled up in disgust. Dean grinned and smacked his arm.

'You good?'

'You really gonna let me take the car?' Sam asked sceptically.

'Sure,' Dean smiled. 'You know the rules. Check the gas. Check the oil. You hurt her, I kill you. Right?'

His brother sighed and rolled his eyes. 'Fine,' he muttered.

'Good man,' Dean cheered. 'Keys are in the ignition. Night, Sammy!' He swatted Sam's ass on the way out.


The rain had just stopped pattering on the windows, he had one wrist in the cuffs and everything shaping up nicely when Cas popped in, saying he had important information to share, and that Sam was outside with his skin turning an unusual shade of blue.


Sam looked up with a petulant pout, pressed back against the side of the car with his shoulders hunched up and his hands deep in his pockets. 'Finally done?' he muttered sullenly, crossing his arms tightly over his chest, kicked-puppy eyes going full strength even half hidden behind a fall of dripping stringy hair. In the edge of his vision Dean saw Cas absolutely melt. Yeah, that's right, Dean thought with a mental snicker. His brother's puppy dog eyes could even take down angels.

Sam rubbed the back of his right ankle with his left toe, a subconscious little move meant to shift stiffening joints, and Dean saw that his shoes were soaked through.

Okay, he felt kinda shitty now.

'Aw, I'm sorry, Sammy,' he sighed. 'I seriously forgot I put the keys in my pockets.'

'Yeah, wonder why that was,' Sam snapped, wrapping his arms tighter around himself as he gave a little shudder like he was trying to suppress shivers but was just too cold. 'Maybe something to do with letting your brain get taken over by your dick? I should've just hotwired your stupid baby.'

Dean generously chose to chalk Sam's sacrilegious words up to the delusions of borderline hypothermia and ran a second eye over his brother. The first once-over had come up clear- that automatic, ingrained, gotta take care of Sammy flick of his eyes up and down Sam's body every time he saw him just to make sure all parts were whole and functioning like they should be. A second check let him notice that, yeah, Sam might not be bloody or bending like something hurt, but his little brother was definitely soaked right through his clothes and shoes and probably freezing cold. And pissed. Undeniably pissed. 'I'm sorry, Sammy,' he sighed again, shrugging out of his jacket. 'Stupid mistake. C'mere, or you'll turn into a popsicle on the drive.'

Dean pulled Sam's wet jacket down off his shoulders, ignoring Sam's irritably batting hands (he was too stiff with cold to do much damage, anyway). He threw Sam's jacket over the roof of the car with a slop sound and stuffed his brother's arms into his own warm, dry coat, pulling it into place and doing up the front. 'There ya go,' he muttered, turning up the collar to protect Sam's neck from his own dripping hair. He gently clapped Sam's cheeks. 'Better? Think you'll make it to a motel?' he asked, stepping back to give him an exaggerated critical once-over.

Sam shot him a dirty look, cold hands stuffed back in his pockets, and opened his mouth for some smart-ass reply, but-

'Wha- Cas!' Sam yelped, leaping back against the car. 'What are you doing?'

Castiel had stripped off his trench coat- repeat, Cas had taken off his trench-and was gingerly placing it on Sam's broad shoulders, trying to stuff Sam's hands through the sleeves. He was having a hard time of it, given how many layers Sam now wore. Dean snickered at the angel's determined expression.

'Cas, man,' he said kindly, 'you don't have to do that. He's okay now.'

Sam glared at him like an angry, waterlogged lapdog. Dean rolled his eyes.

'Fine, maybe he's not okay,' he sighed, shrugging with his hands out. 'He'll be alright once we get to a motel and he can get in a hot shower. So you guys wanna get this show on the road?'

Cas shot him a surprisingly displeased look. 'Sam is wet and cold,' he said seriously. 'I have been led to believe that he will become sick if he does not quickly get warm and dry.' He yanked on the collar and sides of the trench until it was at least covering Sam, if not properly worn, and stepped back with a satisfied expression. Then he frowned. 'You're still shivering,' he told Sam.

'No shit!' Sam snapped, and Dean could tell he was about at the end of his rope. Deciding to be the grown-up, he hustled around and started unlocking car doors.

'He's cold, I'm cold, Cas, you're- I don't know if your celestial presence of whatever can feel cold but let's just get in the car, alright? Alright. Let's go.' He clapped his hands loudly, raising his eyebrows at his brother and his angel.

But Cas was still frowning, moving slowly closer and closer to Sam. Sam just looked alarmed. 'If you're still cold,' Cas said gravely, 'then perhaps it would be better to use body heat to-'

'Okay!' Sam yelped, fingers scrabbling behind him until he could wrench open the front passenger door and throwing himself into the car. 'Let's go. Dean? We're going. Now. Cas, no body heat. Dean!'

Dean cracked up and collapsed over the roof of the car, laughing helplessly. He couldn't even move for Sam's hands tugging urgently at the hem of his shirt.

Castiel looked confused. 'But if your core temperature has dropped, the quickest way to elevate it is through the sharing of body heat,' he pointed out. 'And the back seat has plenty of space-'

'Dean!' Sam howled.

Dean wiped his eyes, still chuckling. 'Thanks, Cas, but I think he'll be fine,' he said, grinning. 'Come on, hop in the back and let's get going.' He climbed behind the wheel- Cas was already settled in the backseat when he glanced up at the rearview mirror, despite not having opened the door- and started his baby up, flicking the heater on high and directing all the vents Sam's way. His dripping little bro might not want to get skin to skin with Cas, but he was obviously still cold, and they really didn't need to deal with the flu right now. Sam was a bitch with the flu. He patted Sam's thigh. 'Sit back and relax, Sammy, we'll get you in a hot shower soon. I'll even go buy you some of that girly tea you drink while you're in there.'

Sam, great kid that he was, understood an apology when he got one. He still stuck out his lower lip in a pout and tried to bargain, though. That's my boy. 'Lemon honey tea. And get me some soup and cornbread while you're at the store, I don't want any of your greasy diner crap tonight.'

Dean grinned. 'You love greasy diner crap.'

'I hate greasy diner crap.'

'Sammy, greasy diner crap is a part of my soul.'

Sam snorted. 'I think you mean your gut, dude. That part at the front that's starting to stick out and makes you look like you've got a four pack instead of a six.'

Dean sucked in a breath. 'You-'

Sam continued on, oblivious to the monster he'd woken. 'Course, that could also be the beer. Cuz dude, the last few times we've been to a bar together, you've spent more time on the drinking than on the pool or the girls combined.' He ducked his head and peered up through his damp hair with big innocent eyes, all earnest concern. 'I mean, you are getting older. Your metabolism's not the same as it was-'

'Right, that's it!' Dean yelled, slamming his palm down on the wheel. 'No cornbread for you, man. Actually, you can forget the soup, too. I'm gonna spend the night somewhere else. Cuz you know, four or six pack, I can still pick up chicks any time I want.'

Sam grinned and leaned over to look in the rearview mirror, raising his eyebrows into a hopeful pout. 'Cas, will you make sure Dean gets me some soup when he goes out?'

Cas frowned. 'Will soup prevent you from getting sick?'

Sam nodded vigorously. 'Yeah. There's an enzyme or something in chicken soup that treats cold symptoms. And I hate the taste so I need cornbread to go with it.' The puppy eyes went big and pleading like he was asking for a jerkey treat being held just out of reach.

Cas' stern expression and stiff posture melted again and he nodded seriously. 'I will make sure he brings some back for you.'

Dean groaned. 'Man...'

Sam snickered and patted Dean's thigh. 'Thanks, bro.'

Dean grumbled, but he couldn't help grinning as he drove.