Disclaimer: Not mine.
Author's Note: Thanks to Jedi Sapphire for the beta on this.
Summary: Sometimes big brothers can be pretty amazing.
Dean stood in the Library entrance, his eyes reflecting the warmth felt for the brother he treasured seated there.
"Hey," he called out softly.
"Hey," Sam echoed, looking up from the book he'd been studying. "What are you doing up?"
"I heard the pitter-patter of little feet."
Sam couldn't help but snort out a laugh. "I don't pitter-patter."
"And you sure as hell don't have little feet," Dean finished with a grin as he took a seat across from his brother.
"Funny." Sam eyed him warmly.
"Trouble sleeping again?" Dean asked.
"A little." Sam admitted." Did I...?"
"Wake me?" Dean cut in. "Nah, I needed the bathroom, all those beers earlier."
"Yeah," Sam smiled as he got back to his book. "You were celebrating something alright."
"So what are you reading?" Dean leaned over to take a look.
"Some of the legacy's oldest documentation. It's really fascinating."
"I bet." Dean yawned.
"Hey why don't you go back to bed?" Sam urged. I'm going to be up for a while."
"I think I'll get something to eat," Dean ignored his brother's comment. "keep you company."
"Dean, I know what you're doing and I appreciate it, but I'm fine."
"No you're not," Dean countered. "You probably only had a couple hours sleep this whole week."
"You don't have to babysit me." Sam said.
"I'm not trying to."
"Dean I've been upfront with you about everything. The not sleeping and feeling more crappy than after the first trial."
"I know you have Sammy and I appreciate that."
"All I can do is deal with this the best I can." Sam rationalized.
"I'm aware of that." Dean stated.
"Well that's what I'm doing now." Sam explained. "Taking a break from the tossing and turning in bed. So please don't worry about me and go get some sleep!"
"What I'm saying," Dean tried to clarify. "Is you don't have to deal with it alone."
"I'm not!" Sam almost yelled surprised by his brothers comment "I couldn't have done any of this without you Dean. Hell I'd still be in Purgatory with Bobby if it weren't for you and Benny. Naomi too," he added.
"I get it, Frodo, you're the one carrying the ring. But that's not the kind of help I mean. You're dealing with a lot of crap and you must be stressed out about the final trial. I know I would be."
"Dean," Sam paused uncertain about this question. "Are you asking me if I need to talk about this?"
"Yes." Dean answered in all sincerity.
"Now let me get this straight." Sam began in disbelief and slight amusement. "You, Dean Winchester, or should I say Dean "Let me get us both some herbal tea" Winchester, wants me to open up?"
"Okay I had that coming but all joking aside. Yes. I might not be into chick flick moments but truth be told Sammy you've the one who buries feelings far more than me, and I get it, that's your way. But just in case you ever need to talk. I just want you to know I'm here and I promise Sammy I will stow douche Dean if you do."
"I'll keep that in mind. I will Dean. Thank you!" Sam said his voice revealing how touched he was by his brothers gesture and openness. "Now if only there were some kind of spell to help me sleep."
Sam buried his head back in his book and Dean sat there contemplating what his brother had just said about a spell.
Something about it sparked a thought and Dean stood up quickly. "Let's go," he motioned for Sam to follow him out of the Library.
"What?" Sam asked, not moving.
Dean leaned over and closed Sam's book. Then he grabbed hold of his brother's arm. "Let's go! I know a spell that will help you sleep."
"You do?" Sam asked as Dean pulled him out of the chair.
"Yes and it worked every time I used it."
"What kind of spell is it? Who did you use it on?" Sam questioned while being shuffled quickly down the hallway.
"It's old magic Sammy safe enough to use on kids." Dean told him.
Dean let go of Sam's arm and gently shoved him into his bedroom . "Now go, get into bed. I need to grab a few things for the spell."
"Like what?" Sam asked wondering if he'd ever get an answer out of Dean.
"Nothing to worry about Sammy, trust me." Dean tossed back over his shoulder as he left the room.
"I do," Sam said, sitting on the edge of his bed not sure what to make of the last five minutes.
Dean returned with a chair and something tucked under his arm.
"For the spell to work," Dean instructed. "You have to be in bed, eyes closed, like you're trying to go to sleep.
Sam gave Dean a puzzled look but did exactly that. He propped up a few pillows and lay down on his back and shut his eyes.
Dean positioned the chair and sat down. He then pulled from under his arm a book, To Kill A Mockigbird. It was one of Sam's favorites which he had found with a few other books rummaging through some of the bunker's storage bins. He had meant to give them to his brother but had forgotten .
Looking over at Sam, eyes closed and so trusting. Dean couldn't help but pause and smile at him. Taking in a deep breath and hoping this worked he began to read.
"When he was nearly thirteen, my brother Jem got his arm badly broken at the elbow. When it healed, and Jem's fears of never being able to play football were assuaged, he was seldom self-conscious about his injury."
After the first few words Sam opened his eyes. He remembered this. He remembered this time in his life. It was before he knew monsters existed. When Dean used to read to him when he couldn't sleep or was afraid of the dark or missed their Dad. It was a time he remembered feeling safe. Dean made him feel safe.
Sam sat up. The memory was bittersweet as it carried with it both great heartache and joy.
Dean stopped and looked up at his brother. "You remember don't you?"
"Yes," Sam answered his eyes tearing up a little.
"I wasn't sure, you were so young."
"It's not that I forgot. It's just been so long since I thought about this."
"I know. Me too." Dean said. He understood what Sam said. That over time with the lives they've led, the heartache they've endured and the horrors they've seen. That the dark memories start to block out the ones full of light. They're not forgotten just lost and just maybe it's an unconscious act of self protection.
"What made you think of this Dean?""
"When you wished for a spell to get some sleep. It just triggered something , a spark of a memory and then it all came flooding back "
Sam gave him a questioning look.
"I never told you this and it's kind of funny but I was convinced Dad used some kind of magic and cast a spell on his books.
"But why?" Sam asked very curious and amused.
"Because whenever I read one of them to you they always seemed to solve whatever was bothering you Sammy. You were no longer afraid or missing Dad and you'd relax and fall asleep."
"So you thought Dad charmed his books?"
"Yes." Dean answered.
"No Dean." Sam said deeply.
"What?" Dean asked looking confused.
"It wasn't any spell or book that made me miss Dad less or feel safe." Sam said looking directly at Dean. His eyes reflecting the same big brother love and worship that Dean had seen in them as a child. That nourished him now as it did then.
"Oh." Is all Dean managed to get out when he understood Sam was talking about him.
"Okay, enough slumber party moments," Dean said his voice shaky as he began to read again.
"Yeah?" Dean peeked up from the book. This time his eyes were a little teary.
"Thank you!" Sam told him whole heartedly.
Dean continued to read glancing up every once in a while to check on Sam and smiling with relief when he saw his brothers eyelids grow heavy.
Sam had lain back down but he didn't close his eyes. He didn't take them off the big brother he treasured who sat there reading to him until they became too heavy to keep open.