John found his keys and tucked them into his pocket.
"Okay I'm headed out - Sam.. Sammy…" John's voice softened as he looked down at the toddler before him. Sam looked crestfallen, his expression on the brink of tears. John cringed.
"…Dean-?!" John called helplessly as he bent down. "Sammy I'm only going to be gone for a little bit, okay?" He said softly, trying to stave off the -
Sam started crying, raising his hands up.
"Don't go, pleaaase," Sam wept desperately. John carefully reached for Sam's arms and brought them down, indicating that he wasn't going to pick him up. John kept his grip on him though, trying to reassure the child. Instead, Sam jumped and shook his head in anguish, trying to get out from his father's hold so he could raise his hands up again - another bid for his father to pick him up and never let go. "Da-Daddy!" Sam drew out the word as he stuttered, tears starting to stream down his face.
"I'll - Sammy - I'll only be gone for a little bit, calm down," John said, his tone placating. "Dean!"
John heard the toilet flush and his seven year old come out of the bathroom.
"I got it - I got it," Dean murmured, walking up to Sam and, without any warning, picking him up from behind.
Sam started wailing, fresh tears bursting.
"No! No! - Daddy!" Sam cried out loudly, his whole body shaking as Dean turned him around in his arms. Sam automatically grasped Dean, crying into the crook of his neck.
"-Sammy I'll only be-" John started but stopped as Sam's cries grew louder.
Dean rubbed Sam's back and started rocking back and forth. He looked up at his father.
"Just go now, you're good," Dean said.
"You sure?" John asked, worried. Dean nodded, putting a hand against the back of Sam's head as Sam's body continued to tremble.
"Yeah he just needs a nap. It's fine - I got it, Dad."
John licked his lips and nodded.
"Okay I'll be back tomorrow. You and your brother stay safe, okay?"
"I love you."
Dean snorted and rolled his eyes in the midst of Sam's devastation. Sam hiccuped against him, grabbed on tighter, and Dean boosted him up higher.
"We love you too, Dad," he said, suddenly sincere as he kept rocking the two-year old in his arms.
John gave a sympathetic smile, nodded, then left.
Dean kept Sam in his arms as he walked over to sit on their bed.
"Shh, Sammy, it's okay," Dean whispered. "He'll be back before you know it okay?" He reassured.
Dean swayed back and forth until Sam relaxed in his arms… but Dean didn't let go.
Dean knew their father was on a hunt.
He ducked his head against his little brother's neck, battling his own fears that their father would never return.
Feeling Sam rest against his chest - his heart beat strong - his breathing starting to steady, Dean found solace in knowing he could control this. He was capable of keeping Sammy safe.
Dean lifted up and pushed the toddler into a tighter hug. Sam melted into it, absorbing Dean's affection like a sponge.
Dean closed his eyes. He was never going to let this kid go.
Writer's Note: Thanks for reading! Please review if you can take the time!