Summary: 1-shot. Sam's POV. Sam's mind & body are giving out on him. He wants to finish the trials despite Dean's best attempt to stop him and he strains to figure out why Dean would want him to stop after he drops an emotional bombshell on his brother.*Limp/tired/sick/confused!Sam & Big brother/protective/slight angsty!Dean* Spoilers for 08x23 Sacrifice.
Tags/Spoilers: 08x23 Sacrifice. This does contain spoilers from the Finale so if you haven't seen it yet, beware.
Warnings: For language as always.
Disclaimer: I don't own anything. This is written for entertainment only.
Author Note: The 2nd tag for Sacrifice and Sam's POV won out so here's a look into Sam's mind during the scene between him and Dean in the Church and forward. Enjoy!
SPN SPN SPN SPN
"'Sammy, stop! Easy there, okay? Just take it easy. We have a slight change in plans.'"
"'What? What's going on? Where's Cas?'"
"'Metatron lied. You finish this trial…you're dead.'"
"'So? Look at him. Look at him, how close we are. Other people will die if I don't finish this!'"
"'Think about it. Think about what we know, huh? Hauling souls from Hell, curing demons, hell, ganking a hellhound. We have enough knowledge on our side to turn the tide…I can't do it without you.'"
"'You can barely do it with me. I mean, you think I screw up everything I try. You think I need a chaperone, remember?'"
"'Come on, man. That's not what I meant.'"
"'No, that's exactly what you meant. You wanna know what I confessed in there? My greatest sin was…was how many times I let you down. I can't do that again.'"
"'What happens when you'd decided I can't be trusted…again. I mean, who're you gonna turn to next time instead of me? What, another angel? Another…another vampire? Do you have any idea what it feels like to watch your brother…'"
I honestly didn't mean to toss all that at Dean like that. I really didn't. I mean, I've been burying that since he got back from Hell and we first got involved in all the troubles out of Heaven and Hell.
I'll use the excuse that I haven't really slept in…I have no clue and I haven't ate anything decent in days and…I'm pretty sure I hit dehydration sometime in the last few hours…so if I've ever asked why in the hell I just pretty much came right out and told my brother that he'd chosen an angel and a vampire over me that'll be my excuse.
Not that it's not kind of true but I really can't blame Dean for picking Cas over me. Back then I was running around with Ruby even though Dean had warned me that she was no good. She'd turned my head to the point where I think anything my brother warned me about I did the exact opposite.
Huh. Little brothers, right? I'd been following my big brother around since I was old enough to walk on my own and looked up to him like he was God…and to me, even today, that's what Dean will always be.
Even if I'm nothing but a huge failure and disappointment to him since it's not every guy who can say their little brother got addicted to demon blood, killed the demon that sent my brother to Hell and let Lucifer, former King of Hell, out of his box.
Oh, we've fought plenty. I mean we grew up either in the back of the Impala or in some shoddy motel where Dad might drop us off for weeks so it's natural for us to fight. We're brothers and brothers will fight but then not all brothers grew up as hunters.
Not all brothers grew up not knowing that we were destined to be vessels for two asshole Archangels with dreams of destroying the world.
Dean's been my idol since I was four years old…okay, probably younger but he doesn't need to know that since right now I figure his brain is about to explode with what I just dropped on him but I'm a little cranky these days and finding out that if I do this third trial I'll die…it just doesn't seem like a big deal to me.
Dying? I've done that. I died in Cold Oak when I was twenty-four which a year later sent my brother to Hell because he made a deal to save me. I guess I died when Roy and Walt shot me and Dean but according to Joshua we'd been dead a lot but always got sent back with clean memories…not real sure I like that even now.
I also kind of died when I tried to trick Lucifer by letting him into my body in Detroit. I wish I'd stayed dead when I fought to control back only to realize he'd nearly beaten my brother to a bloody pulp then I took both Lucifer and Michael into the Cage.
I'm not so sure if being soulless counts as being dead but my point is, I'm not afraid of death. I'm afraid of losing my brother for the final time. I'm afraid of him deciding I'm not worth it anymore and watching him walk away from me like both angels and demons have always said he would.
Dean raised me. I mean, Dad was there…for the most part, but it was my big brother that I turned to when I was in trouble or I needed help or…I just didn't want to be alone.
He's stood by me, stood up for me when he didn't have to. Hell, I'll readily admit that I wasn't the greatest brother in return since I was either walking away from him for one reason or another or I wasn't there when he needed me to be.
I can't count the times I've let him down. Starting when we were kids and he gave up so much of his childhood to look after me. He deflected Dad more times than he should have and dealt with bullies because…that's what he did or so he always told me.
I've often wondered if Dean hated me for Mom dying but I learned once not to mention that or it pisses him off and that's how I always can tell when my brother's really honest with me. He breaks his own chick flick rule and since my brother hates emotional scenes when his voice goes to the deeper tone and nearly breaks I know what he says to me will be the truth.
He used that tone when I asked him if he hated me over Mom and a couple times during the year before he went to Hell…for me.
See, it was my fault Dean went to Hell. He sold his soul because he felt it was his fault that I died and there was no way since then that I could find a way to take all of that back.
I haven't been able to take it back that he went to Hell or that he believes I chose Ruby over him, that I called him weak and useless as a hunter…though both of those times I really wasn't myself but I still feel the pain of hurting Dean.
He lost so much faith in me that he tossed the amulet away that I'd given him, the one that he'd always worn except for those four months he was…gone. I suppose I should tell him that I didn't exactly listen to his orders that day to leave it but I don't know if he's in the mood for that right then since he's looking at me like I'm an alien.
I never tried willingly to fail my brother but it always seems to happen that way. I mean, I know he said that it was all wiped clean that one time but I still feel bad for what happened when I was playing hunter while being soulless.
Dean's been beaten up, burned, drugged, shot, stabbed and so much more while we've been hunting but for me I think the worst thing that I ever let happen to my brother was the night I let him be turned into a vampire and I did nothing to stop it or…when I didn't even care that he was grabbed by fairies.
Of course, the last one he won't talk about but that's Dean. I got all of Mom's emotional genes Dad used to say while Dean…he's just learned to bury them.
He says it's over and that we're good but I still have doubts. I let him down so many times that it's hard to know what he holds against me…except for the whole not looking for him last year thing. He pounded that into my head real good that he held a grudge over the time he was in Purgatory and I…didn't look for him.
Hmm, that's another thing I suppose I should come clean about but Dean has his secrets about things that have happened to him and…there are things I won't tell him, including the real reason I left hunting.
To cleanse my blood, I confessed my greatest sin and no matter what else I've done in thirty years…my greatest sin, the thing I will hate myself over until I die is…letting Dean down so many damn times.
If I'm going to fall then I'll fall but I'll slam the doors to Hell behind me…plus my body's on fire and my head's spinning too much to understand what Dean's trying to say to me now.
I promised him that I'd show him the light at the end of this tunnel but right now I don't even see that for myself…of course between the trials, the aftereffects and using my own blood to douse Crowley with…I think I'm a little light on the whole surviving this mess anyway.
I'd gotten used to Castiel being around…even though you never knew which side of Cas you'd get since he went from working with Heaven, to siding with us to stop the Apocalypse to working with Crowley…and I'm still pretty sure responsible for me coming out of the Cage soulless, to bringing the Leviathans out of Purgatory to being…I'm not sure how to describe him before he saved me from having Lucifer in my head.
Castiel was one thing to me but it was Benny, the vampire that saved Dean and helped get him out of Purgatory that I had the most issues with recently.
Having my brother choose an angel over me was one thing but to have him appear to what to work with and trust a vampire rather than me was…alright, it pissed me off and since I seem to be dying in a few minutes I'll admit…it made me jealous.
When I was ten, Dean was fourteen and Dad had parked us in a small town in Georgia for a few months. It was odd for us to be in one place long enough to make friends and while I didn't so much my brother did and…I can still remember how hurt I was the first time Dean turned away from staying in with me, which had been a ritual between us, to spend time with his new friends.
Jealous much? Yeah, I was but I was ten and when Dad even noticed it I guess I was pretty pissed off then too. I don't know what happened to make Dean either noticed it or something but just as quickly as he'd started hanging out with this group he stopped and talked Dad into finding a hunt somewhere else.
Knowing Dean was pissed this time that I didn't look for him and him saying that Benny was a better brother to him, it hurt but I guess I can't blame him. I haven't been a great brother and even though at the end I accepted his friendship with Benny, it still stings and I do wonder if I live when Dean will walk away or find someone else that he trusts more than…
What? Damn it, between the burning in my arms and the blood I'm losing from the cut on my hand I'm having a hard time focusing on Dean and…what did he just say…?
"'Hold on! You seriously think that? Because none of it, none of it, is true. Listen man, I know we've had our disagreements, okay. I know I've said some junk that set you on your heels, but, Sammy…come on! I killed Benny to save you! I'm willing to let his bastard and all the sons of bitches that killed Mom walk because of you.
"'Don't you dare think there is anything past or present that I would put in front of you. It's never been like that…ever! I need you to see that. I'm begging you…'"
Voice deeper than normal? Check. Tone nearly breaking? Check. Eye muscle twitching like it does when he's fighting tears? Check.
Shit, I laid emotion on him with what he calls puppy eyes and my anti emotion, no chick flick moments big brother is giving as good as he got only it's harder for me not to trust him when his eye and jaw muscles twitch and…I want to believe in him…in us again so much but…
"How do I stop?" can I stop is a better question because we knew once I started these trials it was a do or die thing.
"Just let it go," so easy for him to say but this is Dean and no matter how scared he is now for me he'll always try to say the right thing.
"I can't. It's in me, Dean. You don't understand what this feels like," there is no way to explain to him how I feel.
The pain that's been burning through my veins since I started taking out my blood to use on Crowley is nearly as bad as all the fire I felt in the Cage and…I'm scared that I can't let it go.
"Hey, listen to me. We'll figure it out, okay. Just like we always do. C'mon…c'mon, let it go, okay," Dean's been there for me all of my life and if he believes that we can figure a way out of this then…I trust him.
I hadn't fully realized he'd gotten that close to me until he's wrapping my bleeding hand up in a rag and then, just like when we were kids and he'd taken care of something or dressed a wound he was pulling me into a hug that I swear he's been giving out more this month alone than he has in eight years.
Only this time there's no tension in his shoulder when I hug back. He's relaxed, at ease and it hits me that he only relaxed after I return the move. He wasn't sure if I would…he wasn't sure if he'd gotten through to me or if I'd believe him.
He's my big brother. I've trusted him to know what was right for me since I was little and…despite it all, I still do and I give in to that trust for the first time since the night he showed up at my hotel when he got back from Hell and I hold on.
"Let it go, brother," Dean trusts me to be able to do this and I do…I let go of the pain, of the trials and slowly see the burning on my arms fading away.
"Hey," I'm shocked. Nothing in my life is that simple and right about then is when it all goes to hell and all I feel is a dropkick of agony.
I can hear Dean shouting my name and I think I'm moving but the pain's too bad to know much of anything except I know the side of the Impala is really hard when I hit it and then there's nothing but hearing myself try to breathe.
Whatever I kept feeling inside me is not happy that I didn't finish the trials but I keep hearing my brother beside me. I keep hearing the strength of his voice promising me that he's got me and that I'm going to be fine. Who am I to argue with Dean? My big brother has always been right…though I won't tell him that.
Something else is happening. I can feel it almost like I can feel the way Dean's arm is tightening around me as if to shield me from what…what the hell is falling from the sky? Damn, did we break Heaven or…no, Dean said Metatron lied so…
"What's happening?" I ask him when it seems I can draw in enough breath even though all I want to do is curl up in the Impala and go to sleep like I did as a kid.
I'm shaking but I'm not certain if it's from the pain, the now rapidly increasing exhaustion or fear from what I'm seeing and the actual sound of mixed awe and worry in Dean's voice when he answers me.
Falling angels? Oh, crap. That just does not sound good and I know I should be worried as the pain gets worse and I feel Dean trying to get me into the car as something seems to crash into the lake behind us but I can't help but wonder how we're going to get blamed for this one.
I think I'm in the Impala because I think I will always know the combined smell of leather and my brother's aftershave. I can see out the back window as lights keep falling from the sky.
A piece of me aches as I watch falling angels and realize that whatever it was that Metatron lied about, what Cas was trying to do had caused so many Angels…how many is that, to fall from their home. I know a little about how it feels to lose the only home you've known because I can still feel the pain of the last fight Dad and I had about me going to college.
His words of never come back stayed with me for months after that. So did the look of horror on Dean's face, the look of pain he thought I didn't see when he took me to the bus station because that was the night our family broke.
Even though we've been hunting together again for eight years, it's never really felt like I've come home…not until tonight.
I can still hear Dean talking to me…well he's actually babbling but we don't ever say that my all too cool big brother babbles when he's scared that I might be dying after all. No, we don't ever say that unless I want a bloody lip and I've lost too much blood for that tonight.
"…De'n?" I'm trying to get something out of my hip pocket but my fingers seem stiff. I feel him tense at my voice because he's not sure how much of what he's just said I might've heard but I'm willing to let him slide on most of it though…he hasn't called me baby boy since I was four and fighting pneumonia and he was terrified.
"Hey, Sammy, you back with me?" the cocky tone is back but I know him and I know he's covering so I won't be scared.
The sky seems darker so I must have passed out but now that my brain is coming back to life I also realize the pain is gone. I'm sore and stiff, not to mention tired, hungry and thirsty and I think I really need a shower.
"…Home?" I know by the puzzled look on his face that I'm going to have to stay conscious long enough to get this out. "Can…I…come…damn,"
"What? Baby brother, you still don't make sense when you're…oh, sonuvabitch," Dean's not dumb no matter how hard he tries to make people think he is and I know when it hits him what I'm asking because that eye twitch happens and I can feel the hand he's been running through my hair pause just a second.
Asking to come home has been something that I was always afraid to do because even though we hunted together, lived together, killed and fought together…facing being true brothers again also meant having a home and either the new place we've got or the Impala…I need to know if we've crossed enough lines that I can finally do what our Dad said never to do.
"Sammy," his fingers are on my neck and my heart is lodged in my throat until I hear his shaky laugh, Dean's rugged face profiled in the back seat lit only by the stars and lights that still fell and his smile isn't the guarded smirk he uses most times. "You never left so you will always be home."
That's better than all the straight A's I ever got rolled into one to hear my brother say that to me but I still need to do one thing before I can feel right about this and before I can sleep and I finally get what's in my pocket out.
"Still…trust me?" yeah, and I have a bitch face? He taught me mine then because Dean's giving me his best since in his mind we've covered that.
Running what I had in my fingers around just to feel the familiar outline before I let the cord slip through my fingers, holding my hand up so he can see it too. "You…said…you lost faith in us. Do you have any…left for me or…do you still not want this?"
It takes a lot to make Dean's mask of cool and calm slip. These days up until I started getting worse it was next to impossible to see my brother's true emotions come out but the moment his eyes see the lights from outside reflecting on the little gold amulet in my hand I see what I haven't seen in more than five years.
There's no smart ass replies, no sarcastic remarks as he reaches to take the amulet…his amulet, out of my hand. There's just Dean. His face young and open like I haven't really seen since he was a teenager and something happened to close him up more.
When he dropped the amulet that day he told me to let it go but I'm the one who gave it to him one Christmas. It had meant something to us as brothers and I'd always prayed he'd want it back because if he truly didn't put anything in front of me then…then he should still want…oh…no.
It's dark in the car, I'm in shock and exhausted so I'm not seeing the signs of my big brother shedding tears as he looks at the amulet before slipping it back on around his neck and any leftover tension is gone. Just like that and then…just like that, he's hugging me again.
I feel the tears drop on my neck before Dean wipes them away with a mutter of some sort to excuse them but I don't care. He's Dean and my brother does not do tears unless I'm unconscious so I can't see them.
"Thank you, Sammy," he sounds happy, worried still but happy and I'll take that. All I used to try to do was make my brother happy and proud of me. I hope in some way that I've done one of those things tonight. "You need to sleep while I try to figure out where this leads us and why is Kevin calling us?"
As Dean talks with Kevin I decide to try his sleep idea but stretching out in the backseat isn't as easy as it once was even when Dean gets out to go behind the wheel.
Normally I sit and can sleep in the front seat but right now I just want to sleep and the backseat, my fingers find the little green Army man in the ashtray, reminds me of being a kid; when everything was good because Dean worked his ass off to make it seem like that.
"No, don't touch anything. Sam and I'll be there," Dean's voice has gone back to the gruff tone he uses when hunting or when Kevin's managed to stress him out and I wonder if waking up enough to see what happened is wise when I feel something being laid over me as a blanket. "It'll warm up as soon as we get moving, Sammy. Until then…use this."
If I can recognize the smell of the Impala, there's one other thing that I will also never forget the smell from, something that I haven't seen my brother have out or use since the day in Stull.
Soft worn leather that still has the lingering smell of Dad's cologne but will always remind me of my brother and gun oil as I draw the battered old leather jacket around me and know Dean's grinning in the front seat because I always did that when he or Dad let me use it as a blanket.
"…Jerk," I mumble before sleep comes finally, hearing Dean nearly choke before the radio comes on low. I've pushed his buttons tonight but if I'm going to see how good we are I may as well go for broke.
The teasing insults had been a pattern for us since I was a kid…though I think Dad wanted to kill Dean the first time he heard it when we were fighting one time in the car.
I can't recall the last time I've called him that much less the last time he responded with his usual and even though my body is craving sleep I'm still awake enough to be tense until I feel him reach over the seat to lightly squeeze my arm.
"Go to sleep…bitch," he drops the last word but I still hear it and that's when I go to sleep.
Do I know what will happen soon? No and I don't know if I'll stay alright or if the pain will come back but what I do know if that Dean and I are as good as we've been since the night he came for me at Stanford and…that's all I want.
I've fought all my life to make my family proud of me and I've given Dean a lot of crap over the years but tonight I fought against dying because I wouldn't fail him again. I didn't fall again and so long as I have my big brother watching my back…I know we'll kick evil in its ass every time.
Because that's what we do. Kill things, save people…the family business.
A/N II: Yes, I did just toss in the amulet and leather jacket. I figured if I was going to do brother stuff then I'd pull out all the stops. It is harder to get that across in first person but I do hope this worked and you guys enjoyed it. Remember, look me up on Facebook under morgana07 for more comments or questions.