A/N: A little something to celebrate Sammy's birthday. A little sad in parts but hopefully enough fluff too! Thanks for reading!
Happy Birthday Sammy
May 2, 1983
The little hospital room was full to overflowing with blue: from the helium balloons to the gift backs with ducks, teddies, and other cutesy paraphernalia for newborns, to the fuzzy sleepers and blankets ready and waiting to be wrapped around the tiny creature in his mother's arms. Even the bouquet of roses sitting on the bedside table were tinted a pale shade of blue, amidst the greenery and baby's breath. Mary Winchester was tired, having spent the last six hours in labour (truthfully, that had been nothing, she'd been double that for Dean four years earlier), but blissfully happy, cradling her new son in her arms. Sammy was only a few hours old, and he was a crier. But now, the child was sleeping, long lashes brushing against his chubby cheek. He was beautiful, her little boy, his tiny brow furrowed as he slept. And Mary felt her heart soar as she brushed her finger across the little boy's forehead, gently pushing away his dark hair. She knew that kid was going to have a full head of hair, she'd had the worst heartburn imaginable while carrying him. Before she had cursed it, lying awake at nights complaining about how this kid was going to drive her nuts. But now, looking at to that mass of dark hair, she smiled.
It was what she had always wanted. A life without hunting, spending her days with John and her babies. Dean was going to be such a wonderful big brother, having begged to hold his new brother practically as soon as he had been delivered. The doctor had teased him, but Mary had smiled. "Well, at least we won't have any jealousy issues, right John?" Now she felt complete, whole, as if her miserable past was finally behind her. They could be a family, just the three of them. Picnics, Christmas pageants, sports teams. Ten years ago Mary Winchester would never think of herself as a soccer mom. And now, cradling the infant and gazing tenderly at the sleeping form, she knew that she would have wanted nothing less.
"Hey, baby," Mary cooed, her voice barely above a whisper. "I love you so much. And so does Daddy and your big brother Dean. I just know you two are going to be the best of friends. Yes you are! Yes you are!" She chuckled at herself as she let baby talk slip from her lips. The baby somehow sensed that someone was talking to him, and he opened the big blue eyes that would eventually become a beautiful hazel. A childish gurgle slipped from his lips, blowing tiny spit bubbles with each delighted giggle. And Mary felt her heart melt for what seemed like the millionth time since the little boy's birth.
"Happy birthday, Sammy. I love you so much. Angels are watching over you."
May 2, 1984
John Winchester had always thought that Sammy's first birthday would be a happy affair, much like Dean's had four years earlier. The balloons, bright coloured packages, a massive chocolate cake and a very happy little boy, looking at the camera, more chocolate on his face than in his belly. But little Sam's first birthday was far from that. Instead of being held in the family's warm kitchen in Lawrence, it was spent in a crappy motel room in the outskirts of Laredo, Texas, the temperature nearing the 80s and the air conditioner broken. The child was wearing only his diaper, and there was no chocolate cake or ice cream. Instead there was only a can of Spaghetti-Os and a stale cupcake that John had managed to retrieve from the local baker after hours. Dean was trying to make a big show out of the day, wrapping toilet paper around the room to use as streamers and drawing homemade decorations, crudely taped to the walls of the over cramped room. At first, John had objected. Today was not only his youngest's birthday, but the six month anniversary of Mary's death, of the day his life had changed forever. But Dean had finally started talking after nearly six months of near silence, and if throwing a "party" for the little boy would keep him from being depressed, then he was more than grateful. The last thing he needed was for his son to be feeling as miserable as he was at the moment.
Dean was sitting at the table, spoon feeding Sam and smiling as most of the pasta and tomato sauce landed on his shirt. The baby laughed, waving his arms in delight, sporting a bright red Spaghetti-O smile. "Come on, Sammy, it's yummy!" Dean swallowed a tiny mouthful and flashed an exaggerated grin. "See? Yummy!" The child seemed satisfied that the MSG filled can of pasta wasn't going to poison him and accepted the next spoonful with a smile. "That's it Sammy! Good job!" He scooped the last of Sam's "birthday supper" in the spoon and waited until the baby swallowed before feeding him the last of the pasta.
When the dishes were cleared and Sam's face wiped clean of tomato sauce, John produced his little cupcake. It was vanilla, all that he could find. The man had been lucky that the baker, instead of tossing his write offs, left them in their package on top of the Dumpster, so that those less fortunate would have a little something sweet. John had smiled, glad to know that his little boy would at least get something for his birthday. The boy dug in, the red of the tomato sauce soon replaced by the white of vanilla frosting. John wiped away a tear, hardly bearing to watch. It just hurt too much to see what was happening at the present and think about the what might have beens. But the excitement on Dean's face, watching as the boy wiped the little boy's face with paper towel and made funny faces, made it almost worth it.
He reached for the whiskey, about to take a drink, when he heard his firstborn talking to his brother, holding him in his arms and kissing his chubby cheek.
"Happy birthday, Sammy!"
May 2, 2011
Dean knew that today was going to be hard. He had tried to mentally prepare for it weeks in advance, stocking up on enough liquor to keep him drunk for days on end. He had even considered asking Lisa to plan something for that day, maybe distract him from the pain that he was sure to feel when May 2nd finally rolled around. But that was what had eventually stopped him. He didn't want to forget it, to try to push the day to the back of his mind like a forgotten toy. That would, in a sense, be worse.
But Lisa wasn't stupid. She was well aware that Sam's birthday was coming up, and that Dean would no doubt be a wreck once the big day finally arrived. And instead of planning some get together, knowing that distracting Dean would do more harm than good, Lisa decided to spend the day with Dean and Ben, ready to be there if he needed her but willing to give plenty of space if necessary. And Dean loved her for that. She didn't want to leave him alone for the weekend, allow him to wallow in self-pity (and no doubt self-destruction, too), but she would not smother him, either. Because the last thing Dean Winchester wanted was to have someone hover around him, like he was some fragile creature on the blink of collapse; but he was also afraid to be alone for an extended period of time. Because nightmares of Sam would surely haunt him, taunt him incessantly.
And, as expected, the day had been hard. From the moment he woke up that morning, he had hit the bottle, much to Lisa's dismay (and no doubt disapproval, but if she had thought so she kept her opinions to herself). In the end, she did take Ben out for a while, to see a movie and go out to dinner and ice cream. And Dean was glad for it. Hell, alone time didn't seem all that bad at the moment. He needed time to grieve, to be self-destructive if need be, and he certainly did not want Lisa and Ben to watch. He loved her, had always loved her, and had been secretly disappointed to learn that Ben wasn't biologically his. For them to witness his emotional state was not an option. So when Lisa heralded the boy out the front door shortly before noon, Dean made no effort to stop them.
The day seemed to drag on forever, to the point where Dean began to wonder if it would ever end. At one point, he found himself in the attic, rummaging through Sam's duffle. The grieving man had no idea what made him go through his brother's things. It had been excruciating to do so last year, after Sam had jumped in the pit. But for some reason, on the anniversary of his brother's birth, Dean found himself going through his dead brother's possessions, as if that somehow might provide some sliver of closure. And of course, it did little to calm Dean, only brought more agony. Clothes, toiletries, his brother's Colt. His iPod.
Dean turned on the device and ran a thumb along the screen, scrolling through Sam's playlist. Chilli Peppers, Eric Clapton, Dave Matthews. The usual douchey shit his brother enjoyed. And Dean surprised himself when one song suddenly stood out: Jason Mann's cover of "Hallelujah". For a while, Dean stared at the device, willing himself to turn it on, hide it behind Sam's shirts and forget that he had even found it. And then, he suddenly found himself walking out of the attic, iPod in hand. As if in a trance, Dean headed to the garage, where the Impala was waiting patiently, the sleek body hidden by a heavy tarp. He pulled he keys from its hiding spot, opened the driver's door and slid in, the feeling of the leather seats against his back painful and yet somehow comforting. As he slid the door closed, a single tear slipped from emerald eyes.
"What happened, Sammy?" he whispered, running a thumb against the Impala's steering wheel. "Remember when our lives were easy? Wendigos and vengeful spirits? Fuck, now I'm a soccer dad. Think of it, Sammy, I'm taking 11-year-olds to soccer practice." Dean scoffed a little, a sad smile on his face. "Lisa's great, she's been pretty understanding about this whole 'my brother went to Hell to save the world' thing, but still…" Trailing off, eyeing the iPod that was still nestled in his trembling palm. "I don't think I'm cut for the whole domestic thing, you know? Funny how it was me who secretly always wanted it. No matter how much you tried to have the normal life with Stanford and Jessica, it was me who wanted that white picket fence and the wife and kids. But now that I have that, I'd give anything to go back to hunting. Just the two of us, you riding shotgun and giving me bitch face for some stupid shit. I mean, I love Lisa and Ben, he's like a son to me, but it's just…" Hesitating, knowing that he was about to initiate the biggest chick flick moment ever, but continuing nevertheless. "I need you, man. I miss you so damn much and…I love you bro."
Dean sighed, looked at the iPod again. "I know you like this stuff, and it is your birthday, so…" He tapped the screen and the opening chords of "Hallelujah" filled the car. Dean closed his eyes, allowed himself to be immersed by the music.
"Happy birthday, Sammy."
May 2, 2012
Sam walked in to the crappy motel room, a six pack in tow. He stopped at the door, surprised by the sight before him. His brother, sitting on his bed with a shit eating grin plastered on his face, amidst boxes of pizza (vegetarian for Sam, of course), even more beer, and a few gifts, crudely wrapped in newspaper. Sam looked around, eyes taking in the sight before him.
"What's all this?"
"What do you think?" Dean asked with a grin, reaching out a hand in hopes for a beer. Taking the hint, Sam set the case down and handed a brew to his brother. "Guy doesn't turn 29 every day, huh?"
"You didn't have to do anything for my birthday, Dean." Sam sat on the bed beside him, popping the top on his own beer. Dean smirked. "Fine, all the more pizza for me."
Sam chuckled. "No, I mean I feel like you didn't have to. It's nice of you though, man."
"Hell, Sam, figured you do it for me enough times on my birthday, may as well return the favor." Besides, Dean thought, last year I never had the chance. Sam seemed to clue in, and smiled, reaching for a slice. "Veggie's on top," Dean interjected. "The meat lover's is mine, dude."
Sam laughed and grabbed a greasy slice, relishing in the first bite. His world was pretty fucked up, having lost Bobby just recently and learning of the existence of a demon tablet and Kevin, the new whiz kid prophet. Dick Roman was still out there, and Cas was still a few sandwiches short of a picnic, but for now, all was fine. It was just the two of them, enjoying greasy take out and warm beer, watching the game. Just like that Christmas four years ago, the final one before Dean's deal was due. Only this time, circumstances were more in their favor. Both Dean and Sam were alive and well, enjoying being brothers. Life was, at least for the moment, good.
"Well, it isn't a birthday without presents, now, is it?" Dean reached over and pulled out one of the crudely wrapped packages. Sam grinned and began to peel away at the paper, Dean playfully rolling his eyes. "Dude, it's just newspaper. You can rip it, you know?"
Sam chuckled, continued his methodical unwrapping until he pulled out some gun oil and a Subway gift card. Dean smiled at his brother's reaction to his gift, watching with a smile as his brother repeated the process with the second present, an iTunes card. "Maybe you can add some half decent stuff to that thing," Dean suggested with a smirk, remembering that birthday one year earlier, the one where he had sat in the Impala and had listened to his brother's music. He hadn't been aware at the time, but that song had saved his life, had kept him sane those final weeks before his brother had finally come back to him, not as Robo Sam, but as the Sam Winchester he had raised since a baby, the Sam who felt guilty if caught surfing for porn.
"Thanks, Dean, these are awesome." Sam's voice snapped Dean back to reality. "It's really nice of you to do this for me, you really shouldn't have."
"That's what awesome big brothers are for, Sam." Dean grinned, reaching for another slice of pizza. He thumped his brother gently on the shoulder and smiled.
"Happy birthday, Sammy."