A.N.- This story was inspired by watching a Youtube video of Dean's love of food and cramming it all into his mouth. It made me wonder why the hell he eats so quickly with such large bites… the story got a bit away from me and got more intense than originally planned.
This story does still need a beta, so if you want to volunteer I'd love the help.
The house was large, four stories, large windows with pretty baby blue curtains. The door was almost twice as tall as he was, which for Sam was saying something. A little girl had died there two weeks ago, age ten and dropped dead of a heart attack. She had had no pre existing conditions and was in gymnastics. The newspaper called it a medical anomaly. Sam and Dean had a different idea on it.
Dean gave a loud whistle looking up at the house. "Now that's a house."
"Dean a child died here." The disapproval was clear in his voice.
"What? So I can't admire the house because someone died in it? Never'd be able to admire a house again if that's true." His grumbling tone made it clear he wasn't serious, but then Dean rarely was.
"Come on." Sam hurried up the stairs ringing the doorbell, and putting on his most friendly smile.
The woman that came to the door, was not smiling. Her eyes were bloodshot, dark circles under her eyes with a pale complexion. "Yes?"
"Are you Mrs Kimberly?" Sam asked waiting for the lady to nod. He pulled out his fake badge. "I'm Detective Renner, and this is my partner Detective Johanson, we're with the FBI. Can we come in?"
"Y-yes." She opened the door more. "What's this about?"
"We'd like to talk to you about your daughter, Joanna." Sam said as gently as possible.
"Jo?" THe woman's eyes were already shining. "W-why do you believe something…?"
Sam shook his head. "No, but we just want to make sure. She was young, we want to make sure we've covered all bases."
"Of course. Come have a seat, I'll get us some snacks."
"That's really not-" Sam started.
"Much appreciated." Dean cut in with a grin and pulled Sam into the living room, as she headed off into a different direction. At Sam's glare Dean only shrugged, "What I'm hungry. Never turn down free food Sammy, it's a good life lesson. Specially not from a house like this."
She came back a few moments later with a tray of sandwiches and lemonade. "The church keeps sending us meals, don't much have any more room for it all any more." She gave a watery smile. "Please help yourselves."
"Thank you." Dean grinned already jamming a sandwich into his mouth, and kept jamming until his cheeks puffed out.
Sam gave him a slightly horrified look.
"What?" Dean blinked then looked to the woman. "So," he started with his mouth full, stopping when Sam elbowed him.
"I apologize for my partner, he has no manners." He took a deep breath. "Before Joanna died, was she acting weird at all?"
"No, my sweet Jo was just as lively as always. Running from here and there, never stopping. She loved to run, her favorite game was tag."
"She ever complain of any chest pains?" Sam took out a pad of paper, trying to ignore his brother as he crammed his face.
"No, she was healthy as an ox right up-" she cut off with a small sob. "I'm sorry."
"No, please take your time." Sam offered her a napkin from the tray.
"Thank you. Everyone loved Jo, she brought a smile to everyones face. She was so curious about everything. Our cat had died a few days before her, she must have asked me a thousand questions on and about death… Sometimes I wonder if she might have known it was… that if I'd just taken her to the doctor…"
"I don't think so ma'am, from what we read there was no stopping this. At least this way she lived happily and not in fear."
She gave a nod, wiping her eyes.
"What'd the cat die of?" Dean asked still holding a sandwich but his mouth was blessedly clear of the food.
"A heart attack ironically." She gave a small bitter laugh. "He was at least old."
"And you can think of no one that was acting funny around Joanna, these last weeks?" Sam asked noting the cat down on his paper.
"No, it was all a normal week."
"Can I ask what church you go to?" It wouldn't be the first time religion was hiding a monster.
"St. Mary's, up on Orchard."
Sam closed his pad. "Thank you ma'am." He handed her his card. "If you think of anything else, please give me a call."
She took it with a nod "Of course."
Sam stood and grabbed Dean's arm. Dean yanked away grabbing another sandwich. "Thank you for your time." he gruffed out around another bite of sandwich, as he walked out the large door.
Sam waited until they were almost to the road before saying anything. "Why do you do that?"
"Do what?" Dean proceeded to shove the rest of the sandwich into his mouth. "Man you should have had some of those, they were amazing."
"She just lost her child you could have been more tactful." Sam got into the impala slamming the door.
"How is me going to be hungry going to help that? Her kid's dead Sammy, I can't stop that. Hey that cat thing's weird though right?" Dean got into the car turning it on.
"I don't know Dean, Joanna's not the first kid to be curious about death. Maybe this was just a regular heart attack."
Dean shook his head. "I don't think so. I'll drop you off at that church, then I'll go check in with the local police see if they've had any other weird cases."
Sam didn't see a reason to argue so he just nodded. He just sat back listening to Dean sing along with the horrible music, someday he'd get Dean to try new music.
The church was huge, far bigger than Sam believed a church needed to be. The parking lot alone stretched for a good block.
Dean leaned forward over the wheel, looking up at the building. "Yeah, you can have fun searching that place. Call me when you're done."
Sam gave him a glare before getting out of the car, the church had about five entrances as far as he could tell so he headed up the stairs to the first door he found. He was relieved to find it open. Not all churches kept their doors unlocked.
The church entrance was a bit intimidating, red carpet, off white walls, with ceilings that stretched high above. There were crosses, and thorn crowns hanging on almost every wall, the walls were lined with tables showing off different church groups. It gave him the creeps.
"Hello, may I help you?" An elderly man came out leaning heavily on a cane.
"I just wanted to check the place out." Sam said as politely as possible. "I'm new in town-"
"Your a hunter." The old man smiled. "I'm who you want. Come on lad, let us go sit in the sanctuary. My old bones don't like being up right more than they have to."
Sam blinked, surprised but cautiously followed the old man.
The old man just chuckled as he hobbled into the sanctuary. "Every heard the phrase, be careful what you wish for? Or curiosity killed the cat? Or even," he grunted as he slowly sat down. "Sometimes its best not to know? They're all words of caution from my kind. Have a seat lad, I won't bite."
Sam carefully sat down, a good distance away from the man. "What are you?"
"Oh humans have many names for us. I think most hunters call us Questioners. Which I never quite understood as it is not us asking the questions." He shook his head. "I never intended for little Jo to die. She was so curious about everything, I had just wanted her to be able to get the answers she desperately wanted. That cat dieing.. that was just an unfortunate chance that brought the question to her mind. I had only given her one question."
"What did the cat do?" Sam frowned, trying to piece together what had occurred.
"Well what do you think made her curious about death?" The old man stared at him. "You're new to hunting aren't you?"
Sam snorted. "Not in the least. Born into it. Just maybe you could explain it all better?"
"I give people a blessing, or a curse depending on how you look at it. They can get the answers to any question they ask, but too much knowledge is also painful. Like Maria when she asked why her husband wasn't sleeping with her any more and found out he was molesting their daughter. Sometimes it can be deadly, when you ask about someone else, the only way to gain that knowledge to be like them, to experience what they did at that time."
"So Joanna asked what it was like to have a heart attack and.."
"She has a heart attack, yes. What's your name lad?"
"Well Sam, I'm old and Jo's death… I'm ready to go with her. I can be killed easily, just a stab in the heart, but who ever kills me will gain my blessing for a time period."
"So what my questions will be answered, how long?" Sam pulls out a knife. He knew Dean would demand the old man die. Dean didn't see in shades of gray.
"Yes, starting with the last question you asked someone, that wasn't me. As for the length of time… it varies. I've seen people stuck with it for a few years, others for a mere hours. I am old, so I imagine it won't be too long."
Sam fiddled with his knife. "Killing someone willing… isn't easy."
The old man laughed, "No, but it is necessary. Jo is not the first death I have caused."
Sam nodded then plunged the dagger into the man's chest without further warning. There was no reason to drag it up or build up the anticipation for the old man. Sam had a moment to see the old man's eyes shine before the church vanished around him.
"Why do you do that?"
Oh god he was so hungry. Not like he was just hungry but stomach cramping hungry. A long drink of water to try and settle the pain. Why was he so hungry? He looked down at what he was doing. Homework? Math homework to be exact, looked like basic geometry. Why was he doing geometry? Why was he so hungry? Another drink of water.
He turned looking to a much younger version of himself, maybe 10.
"Yeah Sammy?" He heard the voice come from his throat. Holy shit he was Dean, a young hungry Dean.
"I'm hungry, what's for dinner?"
He could feel his stomach cramp painfully at the thought of food. "I forgot to get to the store today. You'll have to make do with leftovers."
Sam gave a disgruntled pout. "Cafeteria leftovers?"
Dean shrugged pulling out the wrapped food from his backpack. "You can go hungry if you want." And for a second he selfishly wished Sammy would say he would, the thought was stomped down with guilt thought. Sammy had to eat, dad would be back soon and they could get more food. Saving his food from lunch for the kid was the least he could do.
"It's fine. What are you eating?" Sammy plopped down at the table.
Dean gave him a grin, "I already ate, had a chilli cheese dog with extra onions. It was amazing."
"Why do you get that and I get nasty left over food?" Sam whined.
"Hey, I got it for free at the gas station. The Cashier thought was just so cute, she was flirting. It'd be a bit weird for her to flirt with a ten year old." Dean plopped the hamburger with mushy broccoli into the microwave. Even cold it smelled good. Tomorrow he'd have to figure something out, he could go two days without eating but three and Sammy would start noticing. Kid was damn observant.
"Well you could have saved it for me."
"Dude she offered it to me so I'd stay and talk to her why I ate it. I couldn't ruin my game." He took the hamburger out, it smelled amazing- which really was a testament of how hungry he was. He plopped it down in front of Sam.
He sat back down staring at the math homework.
"You actually doing homework Dean?"
"Yeah, Dad said if he gets one more call on me missing assignments I'll be running double laps morning and night." Which would definitely result in him passing out. Than Sam would feel all guilty and dad would be mad. Nope, he was going to avoid that bag of cats.
"That would suck." Sam made a face taking a large bite of the cafeteria hamburger.
"Yeah, it would." Dean glared down at the homework. "After you're done, go take a shower and get ready for bed. You can watch some TV until nine then it's lights out."
Sam nodded making a face at the mushy broccoli, "I don't think I want that." He stood up to go dump it.
Dean's hand darted out taking the plate. "I got it, go shower."
"Cool, thanks!" Sam hurried off before his brother changed his mind.
Dean waited until he heard the bathroom door's lock click before quickly eating the broccoli, cramming it all into his mouth as fast as possible. He had never been a fan of the broccoli, but right now they were great and he wished there had been more. He took the plate to the little sink washing it off and drying it. He took a deep breath sitting back down at the table. Focus.
Things got a bit hazy for Sam than before snapping back into place. He was outside, and it was snowing and cold! It took him a minute to realize he was still in Dean, and he was scanning the parking lot filled with snow covered cars. As soon as a man came out he darted forward.
"Hey man, I'll clear your car for five bucks." He held up the scrapper. "I'm fast and good, promise."
The man was tall, maybe as tall as Sam was he had a large scraggly beard and ridiculously bushy stared down at Dean. "Two."
Cheap ass, there went his breakfast. "Deal!"
The man pointed to his car and Dean set to work. He was cold and hungry, he worked as quickly as possible. Sammy would be waking up soon, and he didn't want to explain this to him.
When he finished with the car he looked to the man who was counting out eight quarters. He dropped them into Dean's hand. "Good job kid." He hesitated before dropping an extra two quarters into Dean's hand. "Tip." He gruffed before getting into the car and driving off.
Two fifty. It'd buy Sammy a breakfast sandwich, lunch the school provided but dinner would still be an issue. He hurried off toward Mcdonalds.
If dad came back tonight it would be fine, but if he didn't… damn it. He needed to get some damn money. Maybe he could talk some of his classmates to some poker, course if he got caught gambling on school grounds they'd call dad, who wasn't there, which would eventually lead to CPS, which would definitely result in him running loads of laps. If he was just older he could hustle in a bar like dad did. Things would be so much easier then. He could call Bobby… dad would be pissed though. Bobby and Dad's relationship in regards to him and Sam was always strained at best. Bobby would have a fit knowing dad left them in in a hotel for over week on there own and they ran out of money.
It wasn't dad's fault they were out of money. He'd left them enough, but Sam had slipped on the ice and split his pants wide open. They were the last pair of pants that fit the kid. It's not like Dean could send Sam to school with split jeans, or shorts, that would get CPS called quicker than a ghost vanished from salt.
He's have to hit a warehouse store, like Sam's. They always had a crap ton of samples, it would tie him over and he'd be able to save his lunch for Sammy again. The warehouse stores, weren't the more dignified way, pretty much it was wait until the sample lady had turned away and then smash as much food as possible into his mouth and leave before she tried to talk to his parents. He'd just have to leave school after lunch but a forged note from his dad was not hard to replicate. Problem was it wouldn't help them for tomorrow if Dad didn't arrive.
Dean took a deep breath, he'd have to figure it out. He always did.
"Why do you do that?"
"Sam! Come on Sam wake up." Someone was slapping his face.
Sam gave a groan, he was still starving. "I'm hungry." he grumbled out.
Dean laughed. "Should have had those sandwiches." He hauled Sam up, looking down at the body of the old man. "That our guy?"
"Yeah…" Even dead he still looked like a harmless man, though his blood looked more orange than red. The memories of what he'd seen assaulted his memory. "Dean, it cursed me. It won't last long I don't think, but I'm cursed."
"What'd it do to you Sammy?" Instantly Dean had his hands on Sam's face peering into his eyes.
Sam pushed him off. "Any question I ask, I get a full answer. Starting with the last question I asked, which was why you cram food into your mouth."
Dean blinked at him. "Well that must have been a boring answer, how'd it tell you it was because I was hungry? By making you hungry?"
"By showing that you went hungry for me in our youth… looked like it happened a lot."
Dean's face hardened. "It did not happen a lot. It was pretty damn rare."
"So rare it became a habit to just shove food into your mouth." Sam was careful to make that a statement.
"Just cause I don't have manners doesn't mean I was starving as a kid. Do I look malnourished to you?" He turned around with his arms out. "Now I don't know what wacked out vision that thing showed you but, it wasn't true. I'll try to eat more lady like for you now." He rolled his eyes heading out of the sanctuary. Sam followed.
"Dean, I could feel your thoughts, your hunger. I know what you were thinking, it wasn't the first time this has happened. Hell you knew exactly how to handle it! How-"
Dean whirled around slapping a hand over Sam's mouth. "I wouldn't ask any questions right now princess." His voice was dark.
Sam's eyes narrowed, but he kept his mouth shut.
Dean removed his hand. "Dad did the best he could. Now come on, lets not dwaddle in a church with a dead body."
Sam stayed silent all the way back to the hotel, question after question racing through his head. He could get them all answered, he just had to ask. He looked to Dean, Dean would be pissed if he asked though. Of course Dean didn't need to know he'd asked them, he could ask them while Dean was in the shower.
Dean pulled the Impala into the hotel parking lot, getting out and heading for the door."So crystal ball boy, why don't you ask where the best pizza in town is?"
"That's a matter of opinion Dean, I could get stuck in a loop of opinions." He moved past his brother and plopped onto his had no idea if that's how it worked but it sounded like a decent enough reason. "Just order from which ever one delivers and is close." His stomach growled painfully.
"Sure thing princess." He could hear Dean rummaging around in the night stand.
Sam closed his eyes, he was hungry and tired. He could only solve one of those right now so he closed his eyes. He didn't remember nodding off but he woke to the sound of knocking. He looked over to Dean answering the door and taking a large pizza. He plopped it down with smile. "Half wonderful perfect meat lovers, and half soggy vegetables."
Sam rolled his eyes and got up grabbing three slices of the vegetable side piling them onto a plate and sitting back down. "How long-"
"AH! No questions. You were out for like… an hour I guess. Delivery time sucks here, he got no tip." Dean took a large bite of pizza. "I got a hold of Bobby, said the thing was a questioner or some crap. Killing it puts the curse on you so… it should wear off, eventually."
Sam nodded, it wasn't different than anything he already knew.
"Don't be getting any ideas either on asking questions. Things you don't know are for a reason."
Sam felt anger spike in his stomach. "Yeah, maybe when I was five Dean. I don't really see a reason for me not to know now."
"What good does it do for you to know now? Does it help knowing that sometimes I was a little hungry?"
"A little, Dean- the pain in your stomach was cramping! I could have skipped a few meals to make sure you got to eat too."
"That wasn't your responsibility." Dean argued taking another large bite.
"The hell it wasn't, Dean you're not the only one with a brother! It was my job to keep you safe too!"
"You were a kid Sammy."
"So were you."
"I'm four years older." He pointed out.
" A 14 year old is still a kid Dean!"
"Not compared to a ten year old!"
"No questions Sammy!" Dean stood up quickly. "Just, eat your damn food. I'm going for a walk, or a drive… or something."
"Why?" He found himself asking before he could stop himself.
In a second he was his brother scared that Sam would ask the wrong question. Scared he'd get himself hurt asking about Hell, or… that thought was shut down. He didn't need to think of that. Hell had brought that memory up enough, he hardly need to dwell on it now. He'd just leave and then Sam wouldn't be tempted to ask anything.
"Dammit Sam!" His face was being slapped again.
"Stop that." Sam pushed him away.
"What'd you see?" Dean demanded, helping Sam sit back upright.
"You, and that you were leaving, so I wouldn't ask the wrong question. Dean, I'd never ask you about hell. Not when I'm like this."
Dean frowned. "I know!" He stood up pacing. "Just don't go asking things you don't want the answer to!"
Sam just nodded.
"I'm going out now- because I want to." He clarified. "I'll be back late, don't wait up." Dean grabbed his coat and hurried out the door.
Sam waited about thirty minutes before getting up. He turned the TV on and laid on the bed, pulling the covers up. Hopefully if Dean came back and he was still in a memory he'd think he was just sleeping. He knew it was an invasion of privacy but Dean would never tell him, and Dean knew everything about Sam's life it was only fair he knew some things about Dean. No deep dark secrets just everyday things that he should have known anyway.
"Did Dean ever really stand up to Dad?"
"Did Dean ever really stand up to Dad?"
Sammy was screaming, he'd tried putting the binky into his mouth, a bottle, diaper change, everything, but Sammy was still screaming. Dean stood up with a huff leaving the bedroom to go out into the living room.
"Daddy?" John looked huge from the small childs perspective.
John was leaning over a table, books all around him. "Dean, your brother's crying."
"I know!" Dean moved over to him. "He wants you."
"I'm busy Dean."
"Well, be unbusy for a moment!"
John sighed, turning tired eyes to Dean. "Dean, we talked about this. Your five, almost six years old. I need you to help me out sometimes. Take on some big boy responsibilities. Go see to your brother now." His patients was already slipping.
"Yeah well my big boy responsibilities says Sammy needs you!" Dean literally stomped his foot.
The corner of John's mouth quirked up at the sight. "Dean not n-OW!"
Dean had kicked him as hard as he could in the shin. "You promised! That any time I wanted a hug I could get a hug from you! Why is Sammy different?"
"Dean, go stand in the corner, NOW!" John stood up and Dean scampered into the corner. He didn't feel bad though, no he felt smug as he watched his dad go pick up Sammy and sooth him. Dean didn't see why that had to be so hard.
"Did Dean ever really stand up to Dad?"
Sam groaned as he came to, the TV still on in the back ground. The room quite besides that, Sam looked to the clock. It had only taken about twenty minutes. He smiled, figured Dean would stand up to dad when he was still young. He wondered if Dean ever stood up to dad later in life. He was wary about asking that though as he may get all the times Dean stood up to Dad, and he didn't want to be seeing every times Dean and Dad fought until this spell wore off. He hesitated trying to figure out the best way to phrase a question. Finally he settled.
"Did Dean ever stand up to Dad when he was 16?" Hopefully that wouldn't bring up too many, or none.
"Did Dean ever stand up to Dad when he was 16?"
"Dad, he just wanted you to come to his competition. It was the championship tournament."
"Why are we still talking about this Dean? You were there weren't you?"
"Of course I was, and he did really good. Would be nice for you to see that instead of being told…" he hesitated. "Sir."
John gave him a cold look. "I can't drop everything to be at every little award you boys have. Would you rather I let people die while I watch Sammy do some math?"
"Of course not! But this ghost wasn't killing anyone, just scaring them. It could have waited." Dean was so agitated.
"Yet, it hadn't killed anyone yet. That doesn't mean it won't and I'm on a time schedule Dean. I wait for this ghost than I wait to get to another that is killing people. Is that what you want? You're being very selfish son, and I don't like it."
Dean felt shame burn through him but he stamped it down. "That's not fair."
"Life's not fair Dean."
"His birthday is in three weeks. Can you at least remember to buy him a gift?" He didn't even try to demand his dad be there.
John sighed. "Yeah. I can do that." He put a hand on Dean's shoulder. "He's got to learn that I can't always be there Dean."
"Yeah, but I'd rather he not learn that you'll never be there." He jerked out of John's grasp. "We need groceries." he held out his hand and John handed him a twenty.
"Did Dean ever stand up to Dad when he was 16?"
Sam blinked awake. Well at least coming back was easier. Sam tried to remember ever being upset that Dad hadn't come to something. He couldn't remember ever even expecting Dad to show up. When the man didn't even show up for Christmas it was pretty much a guarantee he wasn't going to come to anything else.
He already knew the next question.
"Did Dean ever stand up to Dad about something not related to me?" His brother had to have argued with their dad about other stuff.
"Did Dean ever stand up to Dad about something not related to me?"
"Dad, just lay down." Dean pushed on his father's large chest, careful to avoid the wounds that scattered it.
"It's still out there."
"Good, long as it's not here." Dean pushed him again, this wouldn't have happened if he'd just been allowed to go with his father on that hunt.
"It will kill people." John started to get up again.
"And if you go out there now it will kill you!" Dean pushed him back down onto the bed again.
"Thought you had more faith in me than that." John grumbled but didn't try to get back up.
"That's not the issue and you know it, Sir." Dean carefully started checking his dad's bandages making sure John hadn't broke any of the stitches trying to get up so soon.
"Did Dean ever stand up to Dad about something not related to me?"
Sam felt like growling in frustration. His brother was selfless he knew that but…
"Did Dean ever stand up to Dad for himself?"
"Did Dean ever stand up to Dad for himself?"
God he was miserable. He was cold and tired, his body ached. He was sick, but it was ok cause he was almost home. He pulled out the key for the hotel room slowly.
"Dean hurry up. I need to go to the bathroom." Sammy complained.
Dean made a point of going extra slow than, smiling at Sammy as he did.
"Dean I really have to go!"
Dean just chuckled and opened the door and Sammy dashed in. He was surprised to see John there.
"Hi dad!" Sammy shouted before disappearing into the bathroom.
John just raised an eyebrow at Sam before turning to Dean. "How was school?"
So much for cuddling under the blankets and watching TV all night. "Fine." He dropped his backpack onto the floor. Normally he was ecstatic to see his dad, but dad meant work, and he just wanted to sleep.
Dean shrugged. "A little." Not that he planned on doing it.
"Good, soon as you're done, I need you and Sammy to head down to the library and do some research for me."
Oh god, not back out into the cold. "OK." he plopped down on the bed, kind of secretly hoping his dad would notice he was sick and make him stay in bed.
Dean huffed, so much for that hope. He rolled back off the bed, grabbing his book bag and pulling out his homework. He'd half ass it, than leave, hopefully the research could be quick and Sammy would be able to do it.
Sammy came out with a grin. "Don't go in there for a while! Dad check it out, I did my halloween report on the salem witches, and got an outstanding A!" Sammy pulled out the paper holding it out for their dad.
John took the paper, reading it. When he was done he handed it back, "Very good, Sammy you were thorough without making you look-"
"Like a freak?" Dean supplied for him, in a snippy voice. He wasn't even sure why he'd said it, only that he was angry.
"Dean." John's voice was sharp."Ten pushups."
Sammy smirked, but wisely did not say anything. It was clear John was not in a good mood.
Dean sighed but dropped and started doing push ups. Ten pushups was nothing, he did thirty every morning, but after eight he was starting to see black dots in front of his eyes. He ignored them as he did the final two before standing up. John was still talking with Sammy, but Sammy was curiously enough watching him, as he nodded at their dad.
"Dean are you paying attention?" John snapped again.
Dean grit his teeth, "No sir I was doing the pushups." It was the wrong response, he knew that.
John looked at him sharply. "Since when can you not do both? Maybe you should do another ten to remind you how to listen and work."
Dean knew that was a command, he should drop and do them. "No, that's alright sir." He sat back down at the table in a huff. Instantly feeling bad for how he was treating dad, but also not caring because he was cold and sore and his vision was fuzzy. Dad could deal.
"Dean." It was clear John was now standing up.
"What?" Dean snapped back, he looked to John. It was clear their dad did not know how to handle a rebellious Dean.
"Why don't you go cool off and run some laps."
Dean stood up and his vision blurred, damnit couldn't his dad see he wasn't feeling good? "You run laps!" He whirled around to go to the bathroom a little too quickly and nearly face planted it. John quickly grabbed him.
"Let me go." Dean attempted to pull away but his father's grip didn't budge. He felt a hand on his forehead.
"Your sick…" John sighed.
John tilted Dean's head up to stare into his eyes. "How long have you felt bad? The truth Dean."
"Couple days." Dean said as he sagged into his dad.
John sighed. "Lay down Dean."
"No, I'm fine." He mumbled into his dad's shoulder.
John chuckles. "You are becoming just like your mother."
"Really?" Both Sam and Dean asked.
"Yeah," he guided Dean to the bed. "Woman was impossible sick, couldn't tell her anything. I could bring her tea and have a good chance of it being thrown back at my head. Of course heaven forbid if I didn't bring her the tea, then I'd probably have lamps heading toward me."
Sammy giggled as he climbed up onto the bed to sit by Dean.
Dean huffed. "I didn't throw anything."
"Did Dean ever stand up to Dad for himself?"
Sam found himself nodding when he came to. Dean was a horrible bitch when he was sick, cranky as all hell. Dad at least had half a chance of controlling Dean but Sam's only hope was to plead and guilt trip him into stuff. Even that half the time rebounded on him. He knew his next question. Sam wondered if Dad ever knew how much control he'd had over Dean, and how much he'd let him down.
Well wasn't like he had to wonder.
"Did dad ever realize how much he let Dean down?" It was only right to phrase it about Dean, Dean was the one that did everything and anything dad asked.
"Did dad ever realize how much he let Dean down?"
Horror, pure complete horror. It took Sam a moment to realize he was in his dad's body, and clutching as tight as possible a small shivering body.
Horror like he'd never felt rushed through his veins. He was rocking back and forth tears flowed from his eyes. This should never had happened, it was his job to make sure this doesn't happen. Mary was probably tossing in her grave right now.
"I'm sorry Daddy." Dean sniffled.
"No." Oh God, no. He pulled the little boy back. God he was so young, eight and far too young for this. He stared determinedly at Deans eyes and not his bare chest. "Dean you were perfect, you were very brave and I'm so proud of you." His eyes skimmed down locking onto one of the hickies on Dean's chest. He was going to be sick, he knew that, but he had to hold it together- for Dean.
God what he'd said to Dean.. before he knew. He pulled the child back into a tight hug. It disgusted him to his core.
"You were very brave and very smart. I'm so proud of you Dean, I'm so sorry. I promise it won't happen again. It will never happen again."
He would rot in hell for this, and he deserved it. He had failed his son, completely.
"Did dad ever realize how much he let Dean down?"
Sam gasped back from that one, his own body shaking from the memory. His dads emotions still streaming through his body. He sat up looking around for the now dark room. The TV still on, some western playing. He whipped his wet eyes. He had no idea what had been happening, Dad's grief had enveloped everything with the memory.
He needed to know what had happened to his brother at eight years old. He would have been four, where had he been? What had really been happening? Dean would never forgive him… but he had to know.
"W-what had-" he shouldn't be asking this. He should just forget it, Dean had told him not to ask. "happened earlier to make Dad realize he let Dean down?"
"What had happened earlier to make Dad realize he let Dean down?"
Sam blinked he wasn't Dean this time. In fact he didn't seem to be anyone. He was just there. Dean was sitting on the hotel bed, the younger version of himself was sleeping beside him. It was a nicer hotel with a separated living room that had a door dividing the two rooms. Sam moved into the other room finding it empty, he could see no evidence of their father staying there. Dad was leaving Dean alone over night when he was eight? Real father of the year there.
When a knock came on the door, he jumped at the same moment Dean did. He looked over to Dean, watching as Dean shushed Sammy before quietly climbing off the bed.
Not that their was any point in sushing the four year old, he hadn't so much as flickered an eye at the knock. He was sound asleep.
Sam's could feel his own heart pounding as he watched Dean, praying that somehow this wasn't going to be as bad as he felt it was going to be.
Dean moved into the living room when the knock sounded again. He quietly shut the door separating the rooms and shielding Sammy from view. He didn't say anything though.
"Dean, it's Pastor Al. Open the door."
Pastor Al? Sam didn't remember any Pastor Al…
The relief on Dean's face was huge though he took a deep breath moving over to unlock the door. "What are you doing here?" He whispered up at the man.
The pastor pushed through into the hotel. "Your dad told me to check on you. Shut the door Dean."
Dean frowned at him but did as asked. "I don't think he meant at nine at night. Plus he'll be back tonight."
Sam could tell by the look on Dean's face he was lying, he had a feeling the Pastor could as well.
"Where's your brother?"
"Sleeping, like I was about to. We're fine, you can go now." He started to open the door but the Pastor reached forward to hold it shut.
"Dean, I actually came over to talk to you. Your father, when he approached me to check in on you boys- Dean I didn't think he was serious. Leaving two small, defenseless children alone while he runs out chasing down figments of his imagination?"
"They're not figments and we're not defenseless. You can go now."
"Dean it's my obligation to turn your father into CPS." He sat down on the couch. "Do you know what CPS is?"
"Child protective services." Dean glared at him.
"Yes, why don't you come over here and sit down? We can talk about your father." The man smiled and Dean took a step backwards.
The man shrugged and stood up. "Well before I call CPS I should check on Sam right?"
Dean darted forward to stand in front of the door that led to the bedroom. "What do you want?"
The pastor smiled and sat back down. "Come sit with me Dean." He patted his lap. "Or I can check on Sammy."
Sam swallowed the bile in his throat. He was using him to make Dean do what he wanted.
Dean glared but moved over to him, the man immediately picked him up so Dean was straddling his thighs.
The man eyed him up and down, with a hungry gaze. Sam wanted nothing more than to beat the man to death right now. Though he'd be equally ok with his dad barging in to beat the man to death.
"It's too bad you're not cute like your brother. You're really very plain compared to him… though I will say you have very adorable pouty lips." He ran his thumb along Deans bottom lip.
"My father will kill you for this."Dean said glaring as the man's hands skimmed down his small chest lifting the shirt up.
"Your father is going to be locked in an insane asylum. Don't worry though, I'm a Pastor I'll take you in once he's locked up." He tossed the small shirt away.
Dean leaned away from him. "He's going to kill you." he repeated.
The pastor only chucked hands moving down so his thumbs could incircle Deans nipples, pinching.
Sam was sure he was going to be sick, he didn't know if it was possible to be sick in these memories but it was going to happen. His eyes burned as the man leaned forward kissing Dean's neck and chest before moving up to his lips.
Dean turned his head away jaw clenched.
The man just smiled and bit Dean's shoulder. Dean's jaw clenched tighter, his eyes blinking rapidly to fight the tears that were threatening to fall.
Sam watched as the man's hands started drifting lower, he wanted to scream. Apparently Dean did too as he started struggling.
"NO." he twisted and kicked at the man. Managing to land a few good blows.
Pastor Al grunted and backhanded the child, grasping him tightly. "You say no one more time, and I'll knock you out and go to your brother." He hissed.
Dean instantly stilled, the look in Dean's eyes was pure murder and even the pastor froze at the look. It was a scary look on an eight year old.
"I'm going to undo your pants now, and you're going to kiss me. Aren't you?" Some of steel in the pastor's voice was gone.
Dean just gave him a smile that could only be described as evil. He leaned forward smashing his mouth to the pastors. Sam turned away not wanting to see anymore, Dean was right he should never have asked.
A strangled scream snapped his head back to the scene. Dean dashed past him into the bedroom, yelling for Sammy to wake up.
Sam looked back at the Pastor who was on his knees clutching himself, a pool of blood slowly growing under him. A small dagger protruded from the man's groin.
Sam found himself smiling at the image, extremely proud of his older brother.
Dean rushed past him struggling to hold the four year old. A blanket was wrapped around Sammy, covering his head. Dean kept Sammy's head pushed into his shoulder. He struggled with the door for a moment then he was out.
He was instantly following the two boys, seemingly being dragged wherever they were. Dean ran while carrying Sam for a good forty minutes before stopping and setting Sam down.
Sammy stared up at him. "Where are we Dean… where's your shirt?"
Dean shook his head trying to catch his breath. "The hotel had a gas leak. We had to evacuate or it would have blown up."
"Where are we going to go?" Four year old Sammy held up part of the blanket to Dean. "Is Dad coming for us?"
Dean shook his head. "No, we'll have to find a way to contact him." He pulled Sammy close wrapping the blanket around them both. It wasn't a freezing night but it wasn't warm either.
Dean shrugged. "Well, we know dad is about eight hours from here so even if we do reach him, we'll probably be on our own tonight. Dad originally came here to take care of a… job, but found out someone else was already doing it. We should try to find them."
"Shouldn't we call the pastor? Dad said to call him in an emergency."
Dean stiffened. "No, he had to leave. We need to find the cemetery." Dean looked around. It was a small little ho bunky town in South Dakota, it was probably after ten now and the streets were empty.
"Dean, why a graveyard? I don't want to go to a graveyard at night!" Sammy protested.
"We have to Sammy, the guy that was working the job… he has a second job of checking graves. He has to… dig them up to check if they're ok still." Dean shrugged. "It's not a big deal Sammy, he's just doing his job and he can help us find Dad."
Sam watched at the eight year old tried to keep himself covered without pulling the blanket away from his younger self. Sam didn't know how Dean was keeping it together, he was positive he couldn't have at eight.
"Where's the graveyard?" Sammy asked looking around at the buildings around them.
Dean shrugged. "Town's not that big, we'll find it." He took Sam's and and started walking. They were both barefooted and in PJ's, Dean didn't even have a shirt.
Dean kept them mostly to the shadows.
Sam tried to remember this night, but he couldn't place it. He kind of thought he remembered a night of walking and being cold but he wasn't sure. It certainly wasn't the weirdest thing that had happened to him growing up.
He kept an eye on the moon, watching it's progression over the night sky. It had been over an hour and the two kids were still walking, but he noticed his younger self was starting to lag.
"Dean I'm tired." Sammy said stopping. "Can't we just stop somewhere?"
"No Sammy we can't just stop somewhere."Dean frowned, "Look up there, it's a phone booth. They'll have a phone book."
"Can we call Dad?" Sammy asked hopefully.
"No, he's not staying at a hotel, it's just an overnight trip. He'll sleep in the Impala."
Sammy started crying. "Than how will that help us?"
"Because it will have a map, and it'll tell us where the cemetery is." Dean used the blanket to wipe Sammy's eyes. "It's ok, we'll be able to sleep soon."
Sam was pretty sure the only reason Dean wasn't balling himself was because he was so focused. Dean had always had the ability to shove everything else back when he had a mission.
Dean kept hold of Sam's hand as he pulled him to the phone booth.
Sammy waited patiently, pure trust that his brother would solve this issue.
"OK, it's not too far from here Sammy, just back that way." Dean pointed backwards.
"But that's the direction we came in!" Sammy's eyes started to fill again.
"I know Sammy, but we have to turn off here." He pointed to the map, "it's why we missed it. It's only about a mile."
"How long is a mile Dean?" Sammy clutched the blanket tighter around him.
"Not far. It may feel a little far 'cause we're tired but it's really not. Dad can run a mile in like five minutes."
Sammy nodded, "Kay."
Neither boy said anything on the walk to the cemetery.
"Why would this man work in a cemetery?" Sammy asked once they arrived at the dark cemetery.
Dean looked down at him. "Someone has to do it Sammy."
"Does dad ever work in a cemetery?" Sammy held back not wanting to walk into the cemetery.
Dean sighed. "Dad's a salesman. Now come on,we got try and find this guy." He pulled at Sam's hand.
"Dean I don't want help from someone who works in a cemetery. Can't we just go back to the hotel? I'm sure it's ok now."
"It's not Sammy. Just 'cause someone works in a cemetery doesn't make them bad. He can help us than we can get a hold of Dad. Now stop being a baby and come on!" He pulled harder at Sammy's hand and this time Sammy moved forward with him.
Dean gave a sigh of relief when he spotted a man filling in a grave. "OK Sammy, I'm going to go talk to him. Stay here" He positioned Sammy behind a headstone. "Stay here until I come get you, ok?" He whispered.
"Dean don't leave me here."
"Shh, you'll be ok. I'll be right up there. Just be quiet, ok?" Dean wrapped Sammy up more securely in the blanket. "It'll be ok, I promise. We'll get a hold of Dad and he'll make everything ok."
Sammy gave a nod and Dean stood up slowly walking up to the man. He was grumbling as he filled in the grave.
Sam was shocked when Dean got close enough he could see the man. Bobby.
"Hey!" Dean said loudly.
The man whirled around, gun already half drawn when he saw the kid. He put the gun away. "Graveyards are no place for kids." He eyed Dean. "Where is your shirt boy?"
Dean stared at him hard. "I need help finding my dad."
Bobby let out a colorful set of curses. "Boy do I look like the police to you?"
"No you look like a hunter."
That made Bobby pause. "What do you know about that?"
"My dad's a hunter… I think you might have met him. John?"
Bobby's eyebrows rose to his hairline. "Are you telling me that hunter has a boy he's dragging around with him? Of all the moronic-"
"Will you help me or not?" Dean interrupted him. "Because to be honest this day has sucked, and if you're not going to help me I need to figure something else out."
Bobby paused to stare at him. "Yeah, your a hunters kid. You got a way to contact your daddy?"
"No, but he should be back tomorrow… but I can't go back to the hotel." Dean looked down than. "I just… I have a little brother. I just need a place for him to stay, he's tired. I… please?"
Bobby threw the shovel down. "Why the hell not?" He looked around spotting a set of eyes peering at him from behind a headstone. The kid was far enough off he doubted they could be heard. "Your daddy and I are going to have a long talk about hunting with children. Two children." He marched off toward the young boy, he knew the other was following him.
He came in front of the young boy and cursed again seeing how young he was. "Your daddy is a moron."
"He is not!" Dean argued. "He has important work to do!"
Bobby looked down at him. "Not more important than you."
Dean seemed genuinely surprised by that statement, he looked down.
Bobby kneeled down in front of them both. "Alright, I'm bad with kids. Never understood them, so I'm Bobby." He shrugged.
"I'm Dean, that's Sammy." Dean moved to pull his little brother up, slightly standing in front of him. "He's cold, and he needs to go to bed."
"Mmhm," Bobby reached to pick Sammy up but Dean stood in his way. "I ain't gonna hurt him boy, but he looks dead on his feet."
Dean stared him down for a moment before averting his eyes and stepping away. Bobby hauled Sammy up onto his hip.
"Come on then." Bobby started marching toward his car, leaving the grave only half filled in.
Sam stared at the scene, he always had thought Dad had just met Bobby on a hunt. It never occurred to him there might be more to the reason why they started staying with the hunter.
Bobby set Sammy down in the passenger seat of his pickup. He froze seeing Dean in the light. The marks on his chest standing out like flashing lights. He reached forward but Dean shoved his hand away, daring him to say something.
Bobby glared right back, taking the dare. "I'm going to need you to explain those marks to me."
Dean just turned his head away, jaw clenched shut.
Bobby slammed the car door shut getting in on the other side.
By the time they arrived at Bobby's Sam was asleep. Dean was still watching Bobby carefully.
Bobby was oddly silent. He got out went around to the car. Dean was already climbing out, Bobby carefully picked Sam up, taking him inside. He headed upstairs putting the four year old into the spare bedroom and covering him bedroom that Sam knew would eventually be dubbed theirs. Bobby blocked Dean from climbing into the bed.
"We're going to talk." Sam wasn't sure he'd ever heard Bobby sound like that. It was a voice with dark.
Dean wilted under the stare and left the room with Bobby.
Bobby led him to the kitchen, he looked around opening the fridge he pulled out a carton of milk smelling it, he made a face and tossed the whole carton into the trash. "Want water?"
Dean shrugged. "I'm good."
Bobby got him a small glass anyway setting it in front of the boy. He sat down, "Alright."
Dean fidgeted with his glass. "What?"
"Don't bull shit me boy. I know what those marks mean, now I want to know how they got there."
Dean looked moments from breaking into tears. "I took care of it."
"That is not what I asked. Your daddy give them to you?"
"NO!" Dean looked up in shock. "No… Dad would never… he's a good dad. It was… Pastor Al. Dad asked him to check on us. He was suppose to come by earlier, when he didn't show I figured he'd forgotten, ya know? I didn't much worry about it, Dad was going to be back tomorrow, and I could care for Sammy for one night. He showed up, at nine… I knew better. It was my fault I knew something was off as soon as I saw him, but I let him in anyway." Dean was crying now. "He wanted to take my pants off… so I stabbed him in the dick." It was stated so causally both Sam and Bobby snorted.
Bobby smiled. "Good. Hope it kills him."
Dean smiled at that, taking a drink of the water. "He better hope it does, cause if it doesn't Dad will."
Bobby nodded. "I'm sure he will."
Dean took another drink of the water.
"You want a shirt? It'll be too big but-"
"Yeah, please, I mean that'd be nice."
Bobby nodded heading into another room Sam knew to be the laundry. He came out with a large shirt. He tossed it to Dean who quickly pulled it on. It was huge, it was short sleeved but the sleeves came to the middle of his forearms and it was so long it dragged on the floor. The neck threatened to slip off Dean's shoulder. Bobby waved him over, "Come here we can jimmy rig that."
Dean approached him slowly. Bobby pulled the shirt up and tied it up so it came only to his hips then he tied a looser knot up by Dean's neck.
Bobby nodded. "You know when your daddy is due back tomorrow?"
"Pretty early, but it depends on if he needed a nap after the hunt or if he got hurt."
"Redwood lodge. Room 119." Dean struggled to fight back a yawn.
Bobby noted it down. "Go sleep with your brother, I'll take care of contacting your daddy."
Dean didn't argue as he headed upstairs, he climbed into the bed cuddling close to Sammy. He let out a shuddering breath, before he started crying quietly. Sammy turned around burying his head into Dean's chest and wrapping his arms around him. He was still asleep as he clutched his older brother.
Sam watched as Dean eventually slipped into an uneasy sleep. Time drifted as he sat staring at the two children. The sun was already pretty high in the sky when he first heard commotion outside the bedroom door.
"Keep to your own business." He recognized his dad's voice.
"You best be damn glad I didn't or your boys would be still wandering the town at one in the morning!" Bobby's voice followed him. "What the hell were you thinking-"
"I was thinking they were safe in a hotel if that's have stayed there! DEAN! Where are they?"
Dean jerked awake and quickly scrambled out of the bed. He raced down the stairs as he dad started up them. "Sir."
"Dean," his eyes swept Dean's red face. "What the hell were you thinking leaving the hotel room?"
"Don't you come down on him!" Bobby came up.
John pulled a gun pointed it at Bobby. "You will leave me to talk to my son, or I will shot you now."
"Dad, no!" Dean came forward, as Bobby raised his hands in surrender.
"Listen to you damn boy." Bobby headed out of the house, slamming the door.
"Dean, you had orders to not leave that hotel." John looked up the stairs. "Sam get back into that room!" The sound of a door shutting quickly sounded, John grabbed Dean's shoulder leading him down into the living room.
Dean stared down. "I.. Pastor Al came around…"
"I asked him to, did he tell you to leave?"
Dean shook his head. "No.. but I didn't like how he was looking at Sammy."
"You didn't- Dean you took you and and your brother out of a hotel in the dead of night because the pasture was looking at you funny? He better have done a hell of a lot more than look!"
Dean flinched and started blinking rapidly again.
"Dean…" John's voice was softer now. "Did the pastor touch Sammy?"
Dean shook his head no.
John kneeled down, his face having lost some color. "Did he touch you?"
Dean burst into tears and John quickly grabbed him. Pulling him close.
"Dean, what happened?" He pulled back so he could see Dean's face.
"He kissed me… took my shirt... I didn't like it. I didn't! And I stabbed him!"
John reached back untying the shirt.
"Daddy… no." Dean held the shirt down.
John stopped immediately and brushed Dean's hair back. "I need to see Dean." His voice was tight. "It's just me, ok?"
Dean nodded and John pulled the shirt off. The hickeys were shining bright on the boy's chest. Any color there had been on Johns face quickly vanished.
"Dean, this is very important you tell me the truth. Did he do more than take your shirt off?"
"He touched through the pants." Dean whispered. "But I stabbed him before he could take them off. I promise daddy, I didn't let him take them off and I didn't let him touch Sammy!" he was crying hard now, he reached for John.
John yanked Dean back against his chest, clutching him tightly.
"What had happened earlier to make Dad realize he let Dean down?"
Sam woke to the smell of vomit, he felt cold. He turned his head to see the vomit lying on his pillow. He gagged at the smell and quickly moved away.
"Good morning sleeping beauty." Dean sat at the small table by the door.
"Yeah, you smell awesome by the way." He looked up. "Was it a question about me?"
Sam shook his head no. There was no way in hell he was telling Dean what he saw.
Dean studied him. "What was it than?"
Sam shook his head. "I don't want to talk about it. I shouldn't've asked."
"Damn right you shouldn't've!" Dean stood up in agitation. HIs eyes moved to look at the mess. "Your cleaning that up."
"Yeah, thanks for letting me lay in it." Sam groaned, without any heat in his voice.
"Your the dumb ass who asked a question." Dean shrugged sitting back down, clearly restless.
"I'm going to go shower." Sam quickly moved into the bathroom, heart pounding.
He was halfway through the shower when Dean pounded on the door. "I'm gonna go grab lunch."
Sam shouted out an ok before quickly finishing his shower. He got out, wrapped a towel around his waist and checked to make sure Dean was really gone before dialing up Bobby.
"What?" Bobby's voice came through the phone.
"I… asked something I shouldn't have." Sam admitted.
"Well you're not dead, so it can't have been too bad."
"I saw how you met Dean and I."
Sam found himself agreeing with the sentiment. "Yeah, look Bobby I don't have any desire to see anything related to that again. But I need to know…"
"Just declare it boy, I'll figure out what it is your asking."
"Pastor Al is dead."
Bobby's chuckle was dark. "Oh yeah. He survived Dean's attack, not sure you saw that, but the boy had stabbed him good. Your daddy waited for him to get out of the hospital before he came in to finish the job. Don't know how he did it, don't much care, he was gone for four hours and when he came back he looked a heck of a lot lighter than when he'd left."
Sam let out a breath of air he hadn't realized he'd been holding. He knew logically his father would never allow someone to live that had done that but to hear the confirmation of it… helped.
"Does Dean know you saw this?"
"No, no way in hell."
"Good, keep it that way."
"I better go, thank you Bobby. For… you know."
"Don't you get mushy on me!" Bobby hung up.
Sam smirked staring down at the phone. He was surrounded by emotionally stunted grown men.
And they were the best men he knew.
A.N. Ok, so R&R let me know what you think?