Author's Note: Just some speculation for what the third trial could be. I'm really excited for the rest of season 8, but also a bit worried with how quickly Sam's health is deteriorating. So, I decided to take things into my own hands. I hope you enjoy!

"Tell me Sam, was it worth it?"

His hand is pressing down on his side, on the wound that is bleeding profusely. Crowley stands before him in the cave, smirking that same self-assured smirk as he twirls the bloody blade around like it's nothing. He can hear the distant sounds of Dean and Castiel working their ways towards him, but it's too late for him.

This was how it was supposed to end.

Sam forces his gaze to be even and steady as he securely holds the angel blade in his free hand. He's fought under worse conditions and though the trials have weakened him, he knows that it's not a matter of winning the battle.

It's a matter of just buying time until midnight when the gates will finally closed. Keeping all demons in and killing those that escape—that's their goal now. They've got reinforcements since Garth has called all his contacts. There's 50 other hunters here with them here, give or take. Sam didn't know them all, but it was nice this time, not going into battle completely outnumbered. It's a bigger battle than he's ever been in, but this is one he knows they'll win.

He just won't make it out.

Maybe . . . maybe if he's lucky, he can see Dean one last time.

His blood drips and mingles with the dirt. With every drop that falls, the barrier to Hell grows stronger. It's only fitting, he supposes. The Boy King, the boy with the demon blood, the one that started it all so many years ago—he's the one that finally gets to end it.

No more demons.

No more cages.

No more Hell.

Crowley doesn't seem keen on attacking him anytime soon. Perhaps he knows that he's beaten, but he's probably hoping that Sam will collapse on his own so he won't have to go through the effort of fighting him.

Sam smiles sadly because Crowley doesn't know what the third trial is. He doesn't understand that attacking Sam and stabbing had been the worst move he could make.

Trial #3—the willing blood sacrifice of the hero at the mouth of Hell.

That's what the after effects of the trial had been doing, why Castiel couldn't heal him—his blood had been changing, becoming the barrier that would block demons from escaping. Crowley didn't know though and now it's too late, for both of them. Sam lifts the blade and the King of Hell chuckles darkly. He isn't threatened by his presence anymore, which is good. Sam has the advantage.

"You're going to lose, Crowley." The youngest Winchester's voice is stronger, stronger than it had been during the duration of these trials. The fighting seems to be slowing, that he can hear and the look on the King of Hell's face shows that he knows it as well.

With a last ditch effort, Crowley charges, a blade out ready to kill. Using all of his energy, Sam deflects it with his own blade and strikes Crowley's side. The demon hisses in pain, but the youngest Winchester doesn't give him a chance to recover. Summoning up all his strength, he pushes the blade into Crowley's chest. The King of Hell looks down, surprise gracing his features. Black eyes meet his and then Sam had removed the blade. Crowley body falls to the floor, limp and unmoving.

It's over.

"Sam!" He can hear his brother's voice and he smirks. Leave it to Dean to be the loudest even in the middle of a fight. Lightheadedness causes Sam's knees to buckle and he drops nearby to the demon's unmoving form. Blood is flowing now from his side now and he lets it because there's no need to stop it, not anymore. "Sammy!"

Still, he fights the darkness that is calling him. He wants—needs—to see Dean once more. Truth be told, he's scared of dying and dying alone . . .

No one deserves that.

"M'here." Sam slurs but soon footsteps are closer to him and he sees his older brother staring at him, worry and fear clawing at him.


"S'okay," He whispers as Dean walks closer from the mouth of the cave, only for him to stop suddenly. Confused, his older brother tried again, only for him to meet resistance. "Hell's closed."

"It's not," Dean swears. "Not until I get you out, Sammy." Outside the cave, the sounds of the battle have ceased and Sam knows it's because the flow of demons has been stopped. They are all trapped now—Sam included, not that he'll be alive much longer.

"M'sorry, Dean."

"Don't you dare," His older brother hisses. "Don't you dare give me that last words crap!" The eldest Winchester is pushing against the wall, the strain showing as it's clear that the invisible force is not going to budge.

It's one of the few things not afraid of his older brother, Sam notes with a small smile.

"D'n." He can't really feel much now and he figures his blood is probably covering the ground.

"Sam, you stay with me." Dean pleads—never orders; Dean has never ordered him before—and it makes Sam rouse enough to force his gaze to meet his brother's. Panicked green eyes meet his and he forces a smile onto his face, trying to reassure Dean that this is for the best in the long run.

The world will be free of demons.

"Sammy, please," Tears prick at his eyes and Sam forces his eyes to remain open. Dean is still trying to get past the barrier but they both know it's a hopeless case. "Sam, stay awake!"

He hadn't even realized his eyes had closed.


Whispering the words that finish the trial, he stares at Dean, at his older brother who is crying—or is that a trick of the light; Dean never cries—and Sam smiles.

Then, he lets himself fall.

When he comes to, he's in a hospital bed with what looks to be 20 different monitors hooked up to him. Confused, his face scrunches up as he tries to recall what happened and how exactly he got here.

He comes up with nothing.


Dean is there, voice raw and eyes puffy. He has the beginnings of a beard and there are dark circles on his face. He looks like he's been fighting for three weeks straight though Sam knows this is impossible. Still, his hand is warm as it slips into his, his grip reassuring and strong.

And the details don't matter anymore.

All that matters is Dean is here and that they are both alive and together.

"Hey," His own voice sounds awful but judging from the relief that flashes across his older brother's face, it probably sounds like the best sound in the world. "S'okay?"

"Yeah, yeah," Dean reassures him quickly. "Everyone got out fine, Sammy. We're all good." Sam nods and breathes a sigh of relief.

"Hell?" Because that's the next most important thing—did he do it? Were they all safe now from demons?

"It's closed, Sam." Dean says it with such finality that it brings a small smile to his face.

No more demons.

No more families being torn apart via possessions or nursery fires.

Sure, there would still be the other things that went bump in the night, but keeping demons out? That was as close to a perfect world as they were going to get.

And Sam would take it.

"S'okay, D'n." His eyes are drooping and his older brother squeezes his hand. He still doesn't know how he made it out of the cave, but it's a story for another time, one when he can stay awake for more than five minutes.

"I know, Sammy," Dean's voice is a mere whisper following him as he plunges back into the darkness, though it's welcoming him now, not trying to pry him from his life with his brother. "You're alive. Everything's okay."

Tell me Sam, was it worth it?


For Dean, it will always be worth it.

Author's Note: I hope you enjoyed it! Please review if you have a second!