Three Dumb Kids
Summary: It's summertime, and the Winchesters are in-between hunts when Sammy finds himself facing a different sort of monster. Weechester! fic, Nice!John. A fluffy one shot fic.
Pairings: Dean/some random OC (mention of)
Disclaimer: Supernatural and all of its characters are not mine.
"Hey, Dean!" Sammy greeted spiritedly, flinging the door open and bursting into their shared bedroom. The nine-year old energetically ping-ponged around the room like a fly trapped in a jar. He loved sharing a room with his big brother—not a shared living space in a motel that functioned as bedroom, kitchen and living area—their own room. He wanted to stay in this rental house forever!
Sammy finally settled enough to drop down on his knees by Dean's bed, where the teenager was curled up in a ball, sheets pulled up over his head, facing the wall. "Hey, Dean!" Sammy tried again. Dean barely grunted in response.
"Come outside with me," said Sammy, giving his brother's shoulder a shake.
"No, Sammy," Dean mumbled into his pillow.
"Come on—please?" Sammy whined, "Are you really gonna spend all summer sleeping?"
Sammy sighed dramatically. "But that's boring, Dean!"
"Says the kid who does book reports for fun," Dean muttered.
Sammy grabbed hold of the end of Dean's sheets and yanked them off him like he'd seen his dad do countless times when Dean wouldn't get out of bed for school. "Sammy!" Dean grabbed clumps of the pale blue sheets, dragging them back up over him.
"Come on, Dean—it's really nice outside...we can play catch—or hunt for bugs!"
"Hunting for bugs is stupid," Dean grumbled.
"...you thought it was fun last summer," said Sammy, confused.
"Yeah, well, I was still a dumb kid last summer."
Sammy shoved his brother's arm, indignant that his brother had just insulted him in a round-about way. "You still are a dumb kid."
Dean didn't respond, just curled in deeper into himself. "Go away, Sammy."
"You can't tell me to go away," said Sammy defiantly, climbing up onto Dean's bed and jumping up and down on the mattress. "This is my room, too!"
"Stop jumping, Sammy. I mean it," Dean warned through gritted teeth.
Sammy jumped higher. "If I stop, will you come play with me?"
"Why not?" Sammy watched with delight as his brother's prone body was forced to bounce with his motion. He'd make Dean play with him, whether he liked it or not.
"Because I don't feel like it, okay?" Dean snapped at his pesky little brother. "Now leave me alone, you're annoying me."
Sammy kept jumping. Dean couldn't be serious—he was just messing around with him, like big brothers are supposed to. And Dean was the best big brother ever. He was just playing being annoyed at him, because he was trying to sleep. All he wanted to do these days was sleep or stare at the wall. The bouncing would wake Dean up, and he'd join right in like always.
What he didn't expect was for Dean to untangle himself from his blankets, jump out of bed and yell, "Dammit, Sammy—I said to leave me alone!"
Sammy froze in mid-jump, falling back onto the bed in a heap, stunned at the outburst of the brother he so idolized. He could tell from Dean's stern expression that he wasn't playing around this time. He really wanted him to go away. And Sammy was so stunned that he did. He fled the room on the verge of tears, rushing for the last person he could turn to now for comfort.
John looked up from cleaning his handgun with a bore brush when he felt something wrap around his forearm. He didn't look at surprised to have Sammy standing beside his chair, hugging his arm with all his might. "Something wrong, pal?"
"I don't think Dean likes me anymore," Sammy informed his father with a pout.
"Sure he does," said John, who'd had no choice but to hear the tail end of his sons' conversation. "Dean's just going through some stuff right now," he nodded to one of the empty chairs at the table.
"What kinda stuff?" asked Sammy, sitting down in the chair adjacent to his father. "Is he sick? Is that why he's been sleeping all day lately?"
"No, I wouldn't say he's sick, exactly," said John, choosing his words carefully. "Dean's just going through a rough patch, and it's totally normal—it's just...some stuff you're not old enough to understand yet."
"You mean like when you and Dean didn't tell me about monsters being real for a long time?" Sammy asked. He was still guilt-tripping them about that one.
"Yeah, sort of," John said, refusing to be baited into that one again. "I guess you could say Dean's battling a monster of his own right now."
Sammy's interest was piqued—he knew Dean had seemed different lately. He must not be anything too dangerous, since he still poured salt all over his food and when Sam spilled holy water on him the other day, he didn't burn.
"What kind of monster?" Sammy asked, leaning forward on his elbows.
"Puberty," John answered simply.
"What's that?" said Sammy, his nose wrinkling. He didn't know what a Puberty was, but he didn't like the sound of it.
"Dean's thirteen," said John, "He's becoming a man."
Sammy took a moment to consider the implications of what his father had said. "You mean like, he's gonna get taller and need to start shaving, like you do?"
"He won't have a full beard for awhile yet, but yeah," said John, setting down his .44 Desert Eagle. He rubbed a hand over his own beard, perturbed to imagine his son's still baby-smooth face beginning to bristle. He wasn't sure he was ready for that yet, now he came to think of it.
"Is puberty also why Dean's voice keeps squeaking when he talks?" Sammy asked. He thought it was pretty hysterical every time it happened—asked Dean if he swallowed a chew toy on more than one occasion. But, failing to see the humor Sammy saw, Dean's face would go red and he'd sulk, not saying a word for hours afterward.
"About that," said John, considering Sammy. "Try not to tease Dean when his voice cracks, Sammy. Just ignore it. Your brother...he's kinda self-conscious right now. Not to mention in a few years it'll be your voice changing, Sammy, and you won't want Dean repaying the favor, will you?"
"No, sir," said Sammy solemnly. "I'll try not to laugh at Dean when he squeaks anymore."
"That also means you'll stop asking him why he's got chicken pox on his face," said John sternly.
"Yes, sir," Sammy agreed. "Dad, is puberty also why Dean doesn't think girls are gross anymore?"
John paused in running solvent-soaked cotton through the bore. He tried to keep his tone light and indifferent, like anything Sammy spilled about his brother was of no consequence to him. "What do you mean, Sammy?"
Sammy considered telling his dad about the time his brother had dumped him off at Plucky Pennywhistle's after school so he could go "trolling for chicks." Knowing such an admission would undeniably get his brother in trouble, he halted that thought the second he had it.
Still, he knew his father expected an answer. "I saw..." he faltered, biting his lip. He was afraid of saying anything to incriminate his beloved brother, even if he was being a jerk.
"You saw what, Sammy?" John asked, with slightly more urgency than his first inquiry into Dean's love life. His mind had immediately jumped to what he considered the worst case scenario, and he desperately wanted reassurance that he was wrong. "Whatever it is, you can tell me. I won't get mad at you or Dean, I just want to know what you saw. Okay?"
"You promise you won't get mad at Dean?" Sammy asked. Dean hadn't made him promise not to tell. He hadn't even known Sammy had seen...
"I give you my word," said John, sincerely hoping he wouldn't have to go back on it.
Sammy took a deep breath. "When we went to the lake last week...when were were packing up to leave and you told me to go find Dean...I saw him behind a shed, kissing a girl."
John chuckled, letting out a sigh of relief—kissing he could live with. He even felt oddly proud of his eldest. "Wait a minute—it wasn't that girl who'd been swimming near you two the whole time—the one who's parents let her strap on a couple pieces of dental floss and call it a swimsuit?"
Sammy nodded, "Yep—that's her. It looked like they were eating each others face's dad—it was gross! And their hands were all over each other and..." Sammy broke off, shuddering at the memory.
John knuckled his forehead. Dean's kiss behind the utilities shed didn't seem nearly as innocent now. He'd have to have a talk with Dean unless he wanted to be a grandpa before he was fifty. He'd always known Dean was going to be a lady's man, ever since that Sunday picnic in the park when one-year-old Dean had squirmed out of his mother's arms when he saw a pretty blonde in Osh Kosh B'gosh totter by, pulling himself to his feet and taking his very first steps to chase her down. He didn't get a number, but he had been awarded a sloppy kiss on the cheek for his efforts. Him and Mary had swore Dean had been smirking for the rest of that day.
Pulling himself out of the memory, John said, "Don't worry about your brother, Sammy. All of his behavior is completely normal for a boy his age. You've just got to remember to give Dean his space. He's going to want to be alone a lot more. He's also going to seem more annoyed at everyone and everything, so don't take it personally if he doesn't want to play with you right now. He's just going through some changes, and that can be hard."
Sammy knew that change was hard better than anyone; they moved all the time, but far from getting used to it, Sammy hated each move more. Change was something to be avoided at all costs. "But I don't want Dean to change! I like him the way he is—was!" he amended, thinking of the cranky Dean-monster he'd just encountered.
"You mean you want Dean to stay thirteen forever?" John questioned. "You never want to let him grow up?"
Sammy shook his head fervently. "I want him to stay the same forever."
John smirked. His eyes flickered over Sammy's shoulder. "I think you just want Dean to stay the same so you can get taller than him."
"Yeah!" Sammy giggled at the absurd thought.
"Not gonna happen, squirt," said a voice in Sammy's ear, making him jump. "Dean!" he whirled around in his chair, saw his older brother standing over him.
"Sammy..." Dean stared guiltily down at his shoes. "I'm sorry for yelling at you. I can't always seem to...control me right now," he admitted. "Just know that I didn't mean anything I said, okay, little brother?"
"Okay," said Sammy quietly. "I guess I already kinda knew that. And I'm going to try to—" he searched his brain for the phrase his dad had used, "give you your space. I'm sorry too, for being annoying."
"It's alright, Sammy—it's your job. Besides, how can anyone stay mad at that face?" Dean teased, pinching Sammy's cheek. Sammy batted his hand away, grinning. John watched their exchange with an endearing smile, wondering how he could feel an irreconcilable desire to hug his boys and knock their heads together at the same time.
"Still up for hunting bugs, Sammy?" Dean smiled down at his little brother.
Sammy frowned. "But Dean, I thought you said that was for dumb little kids."
"I said it was for dumb kids," said Dean. "Not dumb little kids. You're never too old to hunt for bugs, Sammy. So are you up for it or not?"
"Let's go!" said Sammy enthusiastically, jumping to his feet, grabbing his bug jar and racing Dean over to the sliding glass door leading out to their small enclosed backyard, overgrown and lined with trees and blackberry bushes.
"Ladies first," said Sammy cheekily, sliding the glass door open.
"Bitch," said Dean, giving Sammy a light shove out the door.
"Jerk!" Sammy countered, though he was beaming. He was just glad to have his brother back.
"Stay in the yard, boys!" John called before Dean slid the door shut. "No crawling under that hole in the fence."
"Yes, sir!" the boys chorused. The door closed and John watched their retreating backs, traipsing off through the tall grass.
There was no denying that his boys were growing up; every time he returned from a hunt, they looked older and more mature than when he'd left them. After his last hunt, he'd measured them to check his theory and found they had both indeed grown since he last saw them. It made his heart ache to know how much of his sons' growing up they were doing without him. He knew that when these days were gone, they were gone—Sam and Dean wouldn't be his baby boys forever. In fact, even now they'd no doubt cringe if he was to ever use that term of endearment.
John picked up his gun again, getting back to work. The laughter of his boys carried in from outside, stopping John in his tracks. They sounded so happy, so carefree—so young. He put his gun down and said aloud, "What am I doing?"
John pushed back from the table, rising to his feet.
Now, when he wasn't on a case—he had to make the most of the time with his boys. The life they had been thrust into was demanding, but he didn't want to look back one day and have any regrets when it came to his boys. He knew that was a foolish wish—the decisions he'd already made that haunted him were enough to fill up a phone book. But maybe there was still time to try to fix things; neither of his boys were completely lost to him yet. He still had time.
And Dean was right; you're never too old to hunt for bugs—or to play with your kids, for that matter.
John slid open the glass door, stepping out into the blinding sunlight. "What're we hunting today, boys?"
And that is how on a sunny July afternoon, three dumb kids came to collect twenty-three stick bugs.
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