11.10 “The Devil in the Details”
Finally…a conversation with Dean, back in the present.
Sam comes back to himself, out of the sinkhole of memories he’s been stuck re-hashing for the last hour and a half when the Impala stops inside the Bunker’s well-lit garage. Dean’s opening the door for him before he can shake himself all the way back to the present enough to operate the door handle himself. Dean puts a strong hand under his armpit and helps him out of the car, one hand on top of Sam’s head to make sure he doesn’t hit the edge.
“You were really out of it. You doing okay?” Dean asks, hoisting Sam all the way to standing and securing an arm around his waist to support Sam.
Sam loops one arm around Dean’s shoulders and tries not to put all his weight on Dean. “Yeah, I’m doing better. Good to be home.”
“Let’s get you to bed, huh?” Dean asks, walking them up the short flight of stairs to the main hall.
“Can I sleep with you, just tonight? I don’t want to…” Sam trails off, embarrassed to be asking.
“Of course, my bed’s softer anyway and you’re pretty banged up,” Dean says, trying to sound nonchalant about the sudden chance to have Sam back in his bed for any reason.
“You are too, Dean,” Sam says, suddenly so filled with guilt for his brother having to have rescued him from Hell, he feels nauseous. “I need the bathroom first.”
Dean hears the urgency and speeds up his steps guiding them into the large bathroom.
“I’ll leave you to it, if you’ll be okay for a sec?” Dean says, stepping away to give Sam privacy.
Sam waves him off, glad that Dean won’t have to see this. He tries to hold off on vomiting up the remains of whatever he ate several days ago into the toilet until Dean’s gone. Doesn’t want to worry him any more than he already is. There’s not much left, and once that’s done he feels better, but terribly thirsty. He washes his face and hands at the sink, and gives into the brief pleasure of brushing his teeth, all the while avoiding his own eyes in the mirror.
He’s back at the door to Dean’s room in a few minutes and hears Dean rustling around, turning down the bedcovers, fluffing up the pillows. His big brother being so mother hennish is always so damn charming. There’s a water carafe on what’s usually his side of the bed, newly filled, the cold causing the condensation to bead up and trickle down the cut glass. And a plate with a small stack of saltine crackers. Dean always knows what he needs after losing it like that.
Sam sits down on the edge of the bed and pours a glass of water, hand unsteady, but not shaking too much. He empties the glass and follows it with a couple of crackers. “Thanks, Dean,” he says with a mouthful of cracker crumbs, just to see if Dean will laugh.
Dean laughs at Sam’s mumbled messy thank you and slips under the covers on the other side of the bed.
Hearing Dean laugh, after the day they’ve had is like a magic energy pill. Sam’s heart speeds up from a level of just barely keeping up with the demand to pumping in excitement. Beating even faster than his joyful and relieved thoughts, He’s still here, he’s still alive. We’re still here, we’re still alive. Here together. “I mean it, Dean. Thank you, for coming for me. I knew you would. I told him you would.”
“Sorry it took so long for me to get to you,” Dean says, patting the bed beside him. “C’mon, bed time for heroes, get in here.”
Sam nods at the compliment, internally savoring for a moment that Dean would say that out loud to him. He pulls his shirts and jeans off and slides under the covers, immediately curling into Dean’s arms.
“Why do you do it, Sammy?” Dean asks, tracing one hand lightly down Sam’s skin from shoulder to elbow and back up again.
Sam turns a little in the bed towards Dean, rearranging his head on the pillow so he can see his brother’s face. “Why do I do what, Dean?”
Dean looks at him for a long moment, so long that Sam thinks he won’t get an answer. Dean’s focus shifts to his hand, still moving on Sam’s skin. “You know. Stay with me.”
Sam reaches up and stops Dean’s hand, engulfing it within his own. He squeezes it gently and strokes his fingers along the tips of Dean’s fingers. His mind races trying to figure out why Dean would be asking him that question right now. Had he been talking in his sleep in the car? “You really want to know?”
Dean snakes his hand out of Sam’s grasp and pulls his body away from Sam’s. “I wouldn’t have asked if I didn’t, c’mon Sam, all this time, especially with the shit I’ve pulled the last few years. You had more than enough reason to take off, forget you ever had a brother like me.”
“That wouldn’t have been possible,” Sam answers, staring at the ceiling and wondering at the utter impossibility of that idea. To leave Dean, cut him out of his life, attempt to forget him. He tamps down his anger at Dean asking this question at all, for entertaining the possibility of Sam abandoning him after everything.
“And why’s that?” Dean presses, voice sounding a little strained at having to keep questioning Sam about something so important to both of them.
“I can’t just say it straight out,” Sam says, cringing at the thought of what his brother would do if he does just say it. He recalls what he’d blurted out to Lucifer not all that long ago. How it had convinced an archangel that he was inseparable from Dean.
“What’s with the twenty questions all of a sudden, dude? I feel like I’m missing something important, you’ve never asked me anything like this before.”
“I’ve just been thinking about me killing Death, and how I didn’t even have to question that you’d show up to that place. I knew you’d be there for me, no matter what. Even though I was completely convinced right or wrong, of having to kill you, Sam. And there you were. Down on your knees, showing me what was still worth fighting for. I mean, god, you ended up in the damn Cage with Lucifer again because of what I’d fucked up. So why the hell would you still want to stay with me when all this bad shit happens.”
“I’ll answer you, but first, you tell me why you think I stay.”
“Sometimes, I think it’s just because you feel obligated to because we’re brothers or whatever. Or maybe that you feel like you have to keep an eye on me, keep me on the straight and narrow, be my conscience, all that. I hope it’s more than that, but I really don’t know, Sammy, that’s why I asked.”
“You were closest with the first part, but we’re a whole lot more than brothers or ‘whatever’ and you know it and obligation plays a very small part in my decision. I choose to stay with you because, you’re everything to me, Dean. Everything I want, everything I need, you are everything. No matter what else is going on, my life does not work if you’re not with me.”
“I was hoping it was something like that. Same here, by the way, couldn’t imagine it going any other way.”
“Me neither, there isn’t another way. We’ve tried ‘em all already, right? Basically this is what unconditional love looks like,” Sam says, pointing at his own face. “It might not make sense all the time, but it’s what I feel for you.”
Dean’s eyes widen at the last part and he rolls over closer into Sam’s embrace. “Sammy…I can’t…me too, all of it,” Dean murmurs into Sam’s neck.
Sam holds Dean closer than close as his brother hides his face, the emotions probably too strong to display. The small hiccups and breaths that mean Dean is trying to muffle a small breakdown are beautiful to Sam’s ears. They mean that Dean has really heard him this time. He rubs at Dean’s back soothingly and strokes his hair until Dean’s body finally quiets and relaxes.
“I was wondering when you’d finally ask me this. So many other people have over the years,” Sam says, breaking the silence that feels so full and powerful, keeping them safe together, separate from the whole world.
“Oh yeah, like who?” Dean lifts his head out of the crook of Sam’s neck and wipes his face on the pillow.
“Pretty much everyone who’s ever really known us for very long.”
“They think you were crazy for sticking with me, or what?”
“No, most of them were letting me know they at least partially understood why I would, but they wanted to hear me explain it. The one that came closest to understanding was Death, although Crowley came pretty close once. But you know, Death asked me that, right before you came in and interrupted us in my mind.”
“He understood why we were still together?” Dean asks.
“Yeah, it was pretty cool, all about how our souls were entangled, and how we owned part of each other’s souls and how beautiful and rare it was to see.”
“Wow, that’s kind of awesome.”
“I thought so. And then there you were, saying you had a plan, saying there ‘ain’t no me, if there ain’t no you’ and everything. No wonder I said yes, huh?”
“Wonder if Death knew what was coming?” Dean asks.
“You mean when you swung his own scythe at him instead of me?” Sam asks. Dean looks up with surprise at Sam’s painfully clear words. He smiles at Sam then, and nods.
‘Probably,” Sam answers with his own smile. “I mean, he did know us and everything.”
“I hope I didn’t really kill him,” Dean says.
“Me too, he was a strange ally to have, but he was at least fair.”
“Sam, I want to try to make it so no one has to ask you that question anymore.”
“Yeah, I’m gonna work on it. Make it more clear to people who know us. I don’t like the idea that it’s not obvious to everyone that we’re together until the end. Nothing getting between us, ever…”
“Well, it kind of is obvious already, they weren’t really questioning us as like a unit or team or anything. It was more about the circumstances of the time when they were asking. And some of them not really knowing our whole story.”
“That is kinda important, knowing the whole thing…I mean, to understand why we, uh, you know.”
“I do know. But if you want to be more demonstrative or whatever, knock yourself out, I won’t complain unless it gets in the way of working a case.”
“Got it, not too much PDA. Hey, uh, can I ask you something else?”
“You ever ask yourself the question, before, why you stay with me?”
“Uh…I’m not sure how to answer this.”
“Why’re you hesitating, Sam?”
“Okay, I’ll be honest, yeah, over the years, I did ask myself a few times. Mostly after you’d hit me and I wondered if I was really okay going down the battered spouse road if it came to that. The answer by the way was no, in case you’re wondering. And you don’t really do that anymore, so it’s not something you have to worry about.”
“God, I’m sorry, Sammy. Just…hit me back or something if I ever do that to you again. So it’s been a while then, since you questioned…us sticking together?”
“Most recently was probably back when you left me after I kicked Gadreel and Crowley out.”
“But not after the demon stuff and the Mark of Cain?”
“No, no way.”
“Cause after you cured me of being a demon, I asked Cas if he thought you’d be wanting a divorce. I was just joking, but…”
“You were really worried about it? That after all that I’d want to just quit and leave you?”
“I had just tried to kill you, and said the worst things anyone could ever say to the person they—damn, how can you just forgive me like that?”
“I don’t know how, but I do forgive you, of course I do. But it was hard, really damn hard to hear that stuff come out of your mouth, knowing it was part of you, maybe what you really think deep-down in your subconscious. But, Dean, I know you, man. My whole life, I’ve known you. And all that shit was in direct opposition to the whole way you’ve lived your life with me.”
Sam worries that he’s maybe said too much, gotten too emotional for Dean to deal with on top of the rest of it. But before he has too much time to worry, Dean shows him, taking his hands in his and drawing Sam over to lay on top of him. Dean cradles Sam’s face in both of his hands and looks deeply into his eyes. “I’m so glad you know me, Sammy. God, you have no idea what it means that there’s someone in this world who does.”
“I do know. That’s pretty much the point, Dean,” Sam says, leaning down to kiss Dean, softly at first, passion kindling quickly between them, even though they’re still in pain from the beating they took in the Cage.
“Never go there again, okay? Never leave me like that again, you hear me? Thought I’d lost you again,” Dean murmurs between their lips.
Sam pulls back and looks at Dean in surprise. “I won’t, not ever. I promise, Dean.” He seals his promise with a slow kiss that deepens into something that takes them both by surprise.
Soon they’re both grinding against each other, slow and steady and it feels so damn good. To have the pleasure in his body match what’s in his heart right now. The clear joy that talking about all of this together makes it all feel even more perfect than usual. Sam reaches over to get the lube out of the drawer and warms some up in his hand. Dean pulls both of their boxers down and Sam takes their hardnesses into his slicked-up hand. Dean thrusts against him, keeping that mind-blowing steady slow pace until Sam can’t take it anymore.
Sam flips them over so that Dean’s on top and pulls Dean’s ass down hard with one hand forcing him to thrust harder and faster into the circle of Sam’s hand. The glide and friction and heat surrounds them, pulling them both over the edge. They come together, with each other’s names on their lips.
Sam cleans them up with someone’s shirt and pulls Dean up against him, closer than close once again, tangling their legs together so that all he can feel is Dean everywhere.
“You’re everything to me too you know,” Dean murmurs as he falls into sleep against Sam’s chest.
Sam smiles at his brother’s words, hand tightening on the nape of Dean’s neck. “Yeah, everything, Dean.”Back to Masterpost