Hey Guys! So this story was originally published here under the "Fluffy Bunniculas" drabble series, which I've decided to re-publish as separate stories. Too many of the plot-bunny drabbles were turning into more-than-drabbles, so I figured they might be more appropriately published as separate ficlets. Though I really like the term "Fluffy Bunniculas." I'll have to think of way to use that again . . . ;-)

As always, please r&r - constructive criticism is ALWAYS welcome! I'm also willing to take suggestions on which h/c plot bunny I can tackle next . . .

4x19 – Bloodlines & Blood-loss

Sam stared into the white basins the ghouls had used to collect his blood, trying to calculate how much he'd actually lost, but the whole dizzy-and-seeing-double thing was making it difficult. He was gripping both wrists the best he could, but the bleeding had only slowed, not stopped. The ghoul masquerading as Adam's mother had sliced deep, and squeezing his hands on the opposite wrists was only exacerbating the lacerated veins and ligaments. His vision was darkening around the edges, and Sam wondered dispassionately whether he were about to tumble off the table and face-plant into one of the bloody bowls.

Dean hurried back into the room from where he had piled and properly-decapitated the ghouls' bodies.

"How're we doing, Sammy?"

"Not good," mumbled Sam, taking a deep breath and struggling to bring his brothers face into focus. Dean gingerly pulled back the edge of one red-soaked napkin and examined the leaking wounds.

"Okay, this isn't something I can stitch up back at the hotel. Looks like we're gonna be paying a visit to Emergency."

"Dean, wait – we can't! With my wrists like this? One look and they'll commit me."

Dean raised an eyebrow and gave a half-smile as he helped his brother to his feet. "Come on, Sam. This is me –when have I not come up with a good story? Now let's get you to the car before I have to carry your ass . . ."

When the Impala was barrelling towards the hospital, Dean leaned over, grabbed a bottle of whiskey from the glovebox, and tossed it at his brother.

"Drink as much of that as you can before we get there."

"Seriously, Dean? Last time I checked drinking anything while . . . going into hypovolemic shock was dangerous . . ." Sam was struggling to keep his eyes open, and his breathing was fast and shallow. Dean punched the gas a little closer to 100 and blew through two stop-signs and a red light. " . . . Much less an 80-proof diuretic."

"Just, trust me this once, Sam? Please? We're almost there."

Sam took a half-hearted swig.

"Guzzle it, kid. I know you're thirsty."

"Dean, I know you're pissed at me lately. But there have got to be easier ways to murder me."

"Look, Sam, unless you want to be stuck in a Minnesota psych ward for the next week, just drink the goddamn Jack!"

It was on nights like this that Windom ER's head RN, Jane Harvey, really missed Kate Milligan. She had been efficient and sensible and never took shit from anybody. The cops didn't have any idea what had happened to her, but on a night when the ER had no less than 4 asthmatic eight-year-olds, two self-inflicted gunshot wounds, the participants of a four-car pile-up, and three cases of acute alcohol poisoning, Jane wondered whether Kate was AWOL on purpose. The thought clouded her mind as she came too fast around a corner, knocking over an orderly and a cart full of files.

"Dammit, and it's not even the full moon," she muttered to the orderly as they scooped the files back into the cart.

"Don't jinx it, Ms. H," said the harried teenager.

She heard the ER door slide open and looked up, hoping to see the next pair of residents coming on shift. Her heart sank when the door admitted two young men, the type that she always seemed to be patching up after bar fights and DUIs. One, tall and built like a quarterback's worst nightmare, was leaning heavily on the other. Blood was dripping from both of this wrists. Jane looked over at the orderly. "Let the head of security know we might need some help up here before the night is out. He always likes me to warn him before things go to absolute hell . . ."

The orderly ran off and Jane ran up to the young men, grabbing a stretcher as she approached.

"Hey," said the shorter young man, looking around with a tired smile. "Sorry to add to a busy night, but –"

"What happened?" said Jane, guiding the semi-conscious, whiskey-scented bleeder down onto the stretcher. She peeled back one of the blood-soaked napkins they'd been using as a bandage and examined the kid's wrist. Two long, straight cuts sliced right through the principle veins – a suicide attempt if she ever saw one. Blood spattered on the floor and onto the front of her scrubs. She turned and called down the hallway, happy to see her well-trained coworkers already hurrying to help her.

"Maggie! Page Dr. Estrada and tell him we have a hypovolemic shock in room 4 - possible vascular reconstruction. Get this kid on saline right away, transfuse him and let me know when his BP stabilizes . . ." Jane noticed that the other man's bloodstained hands were still holding onto the stretcher as the orderlies tried to wheel his friend away. She grabbed his wrists and gently pulled them off. "Hey," she said, "he's gonna be fine. Can you tell me what happened?"

His eyes never left the stretcher as it disappeared down the hallway. "We'd been drinking. Sam, you know – he may be big but he really can't hold his liquor. He, um, Sammy tripped on my, um, my step-mom's cat. Fell right through the glass coffee table . . . she's gonna kill me. There was blood everywhere."

Jane raised her eyebrows. "Those were . . . really precise cuts for an accident like that. Are you sure? Did you see the accident happen?"

"Yeah – I was sitting right there on the couch. That fucking cat's had it out for my brother since the beginning. Fall didn't just cut his wrists – slashed up his side too."

"Okay, well, have a seat and I'll bring you out some paper-work. From the look of him we might need to keep him a few days."

He flashed a smile and ran a blood-reddened hand through his hair. "Anything to get away from my step-mom's house."

Sam woke up in a dim hospital room with aching wrists and a raging headache. His mouth tasted like Jack-soaked tarpaper. Dean was stretched out in a chair to his right, perusing a skin mag.

"Good morning, sleeping beauty," said Dean with a wink.

Sam groaned. "Dean, I hate you so much right now."

"Well, it worked didn't it? One look at your 0.25 BAC and the nurse bought the story hook, line and sinker."

"Was she pretty?"

"Who, the nurse? She looked like Ellen on a bad day."

"That's a relief. 'Cause nothing good has ever come of a Winchester lying to a pretty nurse in the Windom ER."

"Well, I don't know. Adam didn't seem like such a bad . . ."

"Oh yeah? Tell that to the finger-sized hole in my ribs."

"Stop complaining. At least you're still alive – and a free man, thanks to me."

"When do I get out of here, then?"

"Well, I figure, as soon as I can come up with another good lie."

Sam rubbed around the edges of the bandages on his wrists, which were already beginning to itch.

"You know," said Sam, "sometimes I wonder whether that's really the only thing we Winchesters are good at."



"Go back to bed, Sammy."

And Sam did, but when he dreamed he dreamed he was sucking demon blood from a stranger tied to a table, until the stranger turned into his father, and then into Adam, then into Dean. When he woke up, he was glad to see Dean had left the room.

The dream had almost convinced him to tell his brother the truth.