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Xx


One

Dean creeps in early in the morning, early enough for it still to be dark and early enough for his brother to still be sound asleep. The door creaks, and as it starts to shut on its own, he holds it tight with his sticky fingers to keep it from slamming. The cold wind outside creeps in, and he shivers a little as it reaches his bare arms. He wonders briefly who he gave his jacket to, but there are so many possibilities. It's been a long night, and he's gotten around more than he'd planned to.

Dean closes the door quietly and leans his head against it, sighing heavily and squeezing the knob tightly. There's a sour taste in his mouth, one that he wishes he didn't have to taste to make end's meet. It didn't come about too long ago, and the gum in his mouth hasn't fully masked it, so he starts for the washroom parallel to him, hoping to, A, get the taste out of his mouth, and, B, take a shower, because he feels absolutely disgusting. Cold, sticky, and impure to a fault, he's just about had it. He hates it to say the very least, but not enough to find some other way to pay for dinner.

He reaches the washroom and closes the door hard behind him, locking it so that Sam can't get in. He starts the shower and turns the temperature as hot as it'll go, which isn't all that hot, not hot enough to wash this horrendous feeling away. A heavy sigh escapes him as he looks in the mirror. His shirt is no more than a thin white undershirt, stretched and stained and torn in places from those who get nasty and physical. Physical, oh how the bruises on his cheekbones remind him of them. "You into that?" The girls always ask-the boys don't. The boys just throw him down and get at him. It's the boys who leave all the bruises, the cuts, the bite marks, the carpet burn. He thinks about it and leans against the counter, exhaling deep and thinking about how soap will never be able to wash this off. Band-Aids will never be able to cover this up, and no matter how hard he tries, lying will never block this out. He knows he'll never forget it. He'll always feel this dirty, this wrong.

Nonetheless, he strips himself of his thin shirt and too-tight stained jeans. He throws them carelessly onto the linoleum and steps under the water. It's lukewarm at best, seeing as these motels keep getting sketchier and sketchier the less money they have. The bars of soap are faded, and he makes a mental note to get better bottles at what ever drug store he found himself behind an hour ago. He'll do that first, and then get somewhere less dusty and that smells less like pot. He pauses. It isn't the room that smells like pot. It's him. 'Soap,' he reminds himself. 'Get better soap.'

XX


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