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Title: The Hawk and the Wolf
Rating: PG (Posted on Ao3 as Teen)
Summary: Two brothers, cursed for loving one another a little too closely, wander as knights errant, together yet forever apart. Their luck turns when Dean encounters a young thief, Garth, running from Winchester Cathedral with a stolen book. They have just one chance to meet the conditions for the spell to be lifted; will they win their hearts’ desire or be doomed to live out the rest of their lives under a cruel enchantment?
Story on AO3
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Title: Wish Not Change
Warning: Spoilers for season 15
Author’s Note: Not my characters, only my words. Written for the 2020 Wincest Reverse Bang.
Summary: There’s a picture that Dean has in his wallet. It’s of the two of them, even though it’s not really them, but it’s still the stuff that wishes are made of. It takes a journey to New Orleans and back, a new case opened and closed, and wishes made and granted, for that wish to maybe come true.
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Warnings: Wincest, perceived non-con, perceived somnophilia, angst
Summary: Dean is back and Ruby is dead. But where do they go from here?
For a long moment Sam just clings to his brother, relief that they aren't completely broken sweeping through him. He craves Dean’s touch after the distance between them, needs the familiar reassurance of being wrapped in Dean’s arms after the soul-crushing fear that he’d never see him again. And if the way Dean is holding onto him means anything, Dean needs that reassurance just as badly.
But ‘no chick flick moments’ is still the rule they live by, and there’s too much to be done for Sam to argue when Dean sighs and pushes Sam back gently. Sam wants to protest, but he knows Dean’s right--he’s covered in blood, there’s a dead body on the floor, and he kinda doubts that Ruby drove Dean here so they’re going to need to find the car at some point. But he can’t quite bring himself to walk away, not when Dean is smiling tentatively at him from mere inches away. Not when Dean’s hands are on Sam’s hips and Dean’s lips are soft and pink and right there.
It’s the taste of blood, foul and lingering in his mouth and throat, that keeps Sam from closing that distance. He’s never wanted anything more than he wants to kiss Dean, but the thought of doing so with Ruby’s blood still coating his mouth makes Sam slightly ill. He steps back instead, shoving his hands in his pockets to keep from touching Dean the way he wants to. He can’t right now. Not until he’s clean.
Dean flushes when Sam steps away, rubbing the back of his neck the way he does when he’s embarrassed. “Why don’t you go shower, Sammy. Get cleaned up. And I’ll take care of this.” He scowls down at the body on the carpet, and Sam’s pretty sure he’d like to kick it.
“Yeah, I should do that.” Sam hesitates, hoping he doesn’t sound as pathetic and needy to Dean as he does to himself. “You’ll still be here when I get out?”
Dean looks at him steadily, not quite smiling. “I’m not going anywhere without you,” he says quietly, forcefully. “We’re gonna figure this out together. Now go.” Dean turns away pointedly and starts stripping the comforter and sheets off one of the beds, tossing them on the floor near Ruby but out of the congealing blood.
Sam stays where he is for a few moments, happy just to be able to watch his brother openly. But the blood drying thick and tacky on his skin and the promise of what might be to come drags him back to what needs to be done. Smiling slightly, he pulls a bottle of Tylenol out of his duffle before stepping into the bathroom, suddenly aware that his head is still throbbing from the aftermath of what he’d done to Ruby.
But when the door closes behind him and Sam catches a glimpse of himself in the mirror, the guilt and horror of what he’s done crashes over him again. He grabs his toothbrush with an unsteady hand, scrubbing the taste of Ruby’s blood from his mouth. He follows it up with mouthwash, then brushes again, convinced he can still taste sulphurous, rotting meat on his tongue. He only stops when his gums are bleeding fresh copper into his mouth and throws away the toothbrush he’d used, faintly sickened by the frothy red swirls in the sink as he washes them away. He strips off his bloody clothes, unable to bear the touch of them on his skin any longer. They get tossed in the corner to be burned later, then he turns on the shower, swallowing a handful of little white pills and stepping into the shower even before the water warms.
The water sluices over him, pooling red then pink then clear around his feet as he watches. He doesn’t want to think about what he did, but the memories won’t leave--the taste of her blood, the feeling of power and rage and vicious triumph. It's impossible not to imagine Ruby’s blood moving inside him, carving out new spaces for evil to live. Impossible not to remember how good it felt to finally be able to strike a genuine blow against their enemies. Impossible not to wonder if the answer he’s been looking for has been right here in front of him all along. Sam shakes his head, stomach roiling at the thought of doing it again. He can’t. He won’t.
It’s not til Dean bangs on the door, demanding to know what’re you doing in there Sam did you drown what he’s doing that Sam reluctantly turns off the water and steps out of the shower. He still doesn’t feel clean, but at this point he’s not sure that will ever happen. He dries off quickly, haphazardly, and wraps the threadbare towel around his waist before stepping out into the cool motel room.
But things are different now. He hadn’t considered, yet, just how very different until he sees Dean’s face. Surprise, desire, want--the heat in Dean’s eyes sets off an answering warmth in Sam, drawing him closer. Sam’s eyes catch on Dean’s parted lips, and the overwhelming urge to kiss him is back, along with a hint of jealousy--Dean knows what Sam tastes like, in the most intimate ways, and Sam wants to know the same about Dean. He takes another slow step toward Dean, giving him time to turn away, but Dean just watches him with wide eyes. It takes a moment for Sam to realize that Dean’s tracking a drop of water as it rolls down his chest and soaks into the worn thin towel wrapped around his waist. It hits him hard, that Dean is letting himself look, that he’s not turning away from what’s between them, and Sam doesn’t hesitate again. He steps right into Dean’s space, not quite pressed against him, forcing Dean to look up. A thrill runs through him, hot and possessive, as Dean seems to realize it too, eyes widening slightly as he realizes just how far he has to look. His tongue slips out cat quick over his lower lip, eyes going dark as he meets Sam’s eyes.
That’s all the invitation Sam needs.
For an instant--an eternity--Dean doesn’t kiss Sam back. Then, just as Sam thinks he’s ruined everything, Dean melts against him, one hand tangling in Sam’s damply curling hair as he tugs Sam more firmly into the kiss. It’s slow and easy, just a gentle press of lips that could almost be chaste. Sam licks over the seam of Dean’s lips, not above begging, and Dean opens for him with a soft moan, suddenly eager. The sound burns through Sam, his hunger taking on a sudden, heated life of it’s own. He cups Dean’s face with one hand, stroking greedily over his cheek before sliding down to burrow under layers of cotton and flannel and find soft warm skin. Dean moans again, presses into Sam, his mouth opening wider as Sam licks his way in again and again. Sam drags Dean closer until he can feel the thick line of Dean’s cock against his own, hot and hard even through his jeans. Dean shudders against him, one hand tight in Sam’s hair, the other at the small of his back like a brand against Sam’s bare skin as they move against each other, chasing the maddening, not quite enough friction until Sam finally has to pull back, gasping. Dean doesn’t relinquish his hold on Sam, just leans into him so that every breath is like a feather light touch against Sam’s kiss-swollen lips, every flutter of his eyelashes a butterfly kiss on Sam’s cheek. Sam closes his eyes and just breathes Dean in as he tries to calm his racing heart.
It's Dean who breaks the silence. “I don't want to die,” he whispers into the scant space between them. “I don't want to die and I don't want to go to Hell.” He shivers, and Sam pulls him closer instinctively, needing the comfort just as much as Dean.
“Then we'll save you,” Sam whispers back, a secret, a prayer. He remembers how he felt with Ruby's blood rushing through him, the exhilaration and rage and triumph of defeating her. Only if I have to, he tells himself grimly. “Whatever it takes, Dean,” he promises softly. He can’t hide the darkness in his words and his voice, steady and determined. “We'll save you, whatever it takes.”
Warnings: Wincest, perceived non-con, perceived somnophilia, angst
Summary: Ruby laughs again. "You'd be surprised, Dean-o. Turns out that with the right incentive--say, for example, never seeing or hearing from his brother again--Sam will do a lot of things no one would expect."
Consciousness comes back like a badly tuned radio. Sam can hear voices, fading in and out, arguing heatedly, but the words don’t really make sense at first.
--be fine. Just--
--fucking kill you--
Instinct makes him stay where he is, trying to assess the situation. He remembers passing out, vaguely--he’s still lying on the floor, the demon knife trapped under his body and luckily not in his body. His head is clearing enough to follow the conversation, which he can tell now is between Dean and Ruby. A wave of relief washes over him at the realization that she’d upheld her end of the bargain and brought his brother home.
“You know, you and Sam--it’s always been a matter of some debate.” Ruby’s voice is sly, taunting. “I had 10 souls down that the two of you would never actually have the balls--” she laughs at her own wit-- ”to actually go through with it.”
“Shut the fuck up,” Dean growls. He sounds angry, but Sam can hear the shame in his voice. “What Sam and I do is none of your business.”
“Well, I’m bored. So I’m making it my business,” Ruby says brightly. “We need something to do while we wait for Sleeping Sammy over there to wake up.”
“Don’t call him that,” Dean snaps, and Sam would smile if he could without giving himself away.
Ruby leans forward conspiratorially. “Tell me, Dean...was it all you hoped for? That’s one fine ass, I have to admit. I wouldn’t mind finding a new meatsuit and tapping that myself.”
“Go fuck yourself, bitch,” Dean replies sullenly.
“I could do that,” Ruby says agreeably. “But I’d much rather watch you fuck Sam. Or would you rather do it the other way around this time?” Her voice drops to a confidential whisper. “You know, I was poking around in his head, and he’s been waiting for you to get your head out of your ass and into his for years. Pity you waited so long--only a few months left before your trip downstairs.”
“Don’t talk about my brother like that. Don’t you fucking dare--” The rage in Dean’s voice should be terrifying, but Ruby just laughs scornfully.
“Or you’ll do what, Dean? You can’t even get out of your chair. Sam’s the one who asked for you to be tied up, you know. I was surprised--I thought it would take you two a while to get to the kinky stuff!”
Dean makes a frustrated sound. “Why are you doing this? What do you want from us? You already told me you can’t save me--why are you even here?
“Well, that’s the best part, Dean! Sam called me--summoned me, actually. Never should have given him my real name, it’s damned inconvenient.” She shrugs carelessly. “But what can you do? The important part is that he offered me a deal to find you and bring you back. You know, if you hadn’t left, he might not have ever called me. I really owe you one, big guy.”
Sam can picture the smug look on her face. Whatever she did to him before must be wearing off, because he feels better than he has in months--stronger, more focused. He can feel her blood singing along every nerve, begging to be used, and he's sure he can take her with the element of surprise on his side. He just needs to get his hand on the knife.
“A deal?” Dean sounds shocked and angry. “You’re lying. Sam would never make a deal with you or any other demon.”
Ruby laughs again. “You’d be surprised, Dean-o. Turns out that with the right incentive--say, for example, never seeing or hearing from his brother again--Sam will do a lot of things no one would expect. He’s agreed to let me teach him how to use his powers so he can defeat Lilith when she comes for you. And to amp up his powers with my blood.” She pauses, and Sam tenses, tries to keep his breathing even.
“But don’t take my word for it. Let’s ask Sam instead.”
Sam curses mentally, angry at himself for not acting sooner. He doesn’t try to deny he’s awake, just sits up, glaring at the demon standing casually next to his brother.
“You got what you came for, Ruby,” Sam says tightly. “Get out of here so Dean and I can talk.”
“Not going to happen, Sammy,” Ruby says, all playfulness dropping from her voice. “Dean needs to understand this was your choice, your decision. I don’t want to have to worry about a knife in the back every time we have a little ‘session’.”
Sam risks a glance at Dean, unsure of what he’ll find. Dean’s pale, shocked face surprises him until he remembers what he must look like. He flushes, embarrassed by the blood he can still feel drying on his face and shirt, but drinks in the sight of his brother, safe and unharmed if a little worse for the wear. But he doesn’t seem to be hurt, only angry.
“Is it true, Sammy?” Dean sounds devastated. “Did you call her up, did you ask for this?” Dean twists in the chair, unable to move more than a few inches.
Sam looks away from Dean, then back, determined not to be ashamed of what he had to do. “I did what I had to, Dean,” he says quietly. “I didn’t have time to waste hunting you down. I couldn’t risk not finding you in time.”
Dean’s lips thin. “If I wanted to be found, I wouldn’t have left, Sam.” He turns his head, but that just brings Ruby back into view. “And really? That--” his mouth twists in disgust--”that is what you’re willing to do?”
“When I said anything, I meant it, Dean,” Sam says, refusing to be baited. He stands up, staggering a bit on unsteady legs, clutching the demon killing knife in one hand. Ruby watches as he catches his balance, smirking.
“Sam was very eager,” she tells Dean helpfully, eyes glinting with malice. “Maybe a bit too eager, actually--I think he’s in over his head right now, too much all at once isn’t good for you. Too bad he has no idea how to use all that power--but that’s what I’m here for, isn’t it?”
Dean strains uselessly against the ropes holding him to the chair, snarling soundlessly. Sam ignores him for now. He’ll either come around or he won’t, but Sam has more immediate concerns.
Sam takes a step forward, toward Dean, then another. Even falling apart, his brother is still achingly beautiful, and all Sam can think about is how much he wants to kiss him. Dean watches him with eyes like flint, no hint of emotion other than disgust and anger. Sam stops in front of Dean, their knees nearly touching. Ruby watches them both, sneering as she leans down to whisper in Dean’s ear. Sam can’t hear her words over the pounding of his heart, but Dean’s face twists like he’s in pain.
“There’s nothing to talk about, Sam,” Dean says coldly when she stands up again. Sam just nods, expecting nothing less. He turns toward Ruby, shoulders dropping in defeat.
“I guess this is it, then,” he says quietly.
“Aw, Sammy...don’t take it so hard,” Ruby says, batting her eyes as she sways forward to put a hand on his chest in mock seduction. “We don’t need him--I’m sure we can have lots of fun together on our own.”
“Sure,” Sam agrees, and he moves quicker than thought, quicker than he knew he could-- but not quite quick enough to bury the knife he's holding in her heart. Her eyes go black with rage as she slams him against the wall with an angry gesture then stalks closer until her face is inches from his.
“Did you really think you could take me, you stupid, inconsequential human ?” She spits the final word like a curse. “Did you really--” She stops, body caught in a tight arch, mouth dropping open in pain.
“Yes,” Sam grinds out, teeth clenched, “I really did.” He fights harder, forcing the knife deeper into her chest inch by slow and painful inch. Blood drips from her mouth as she weakens, matching the blood that’s started flowing over Sam's mouth and chin. His vision narrows to the black of her eyes, the throb in his head growing stronger as he gives a final push that feels like it rips his mind apart. He sees the lights under her skin flash and burn furiously through a haze of pain and blood, then they both fall to the ground as he releases her. Dean is shouting his name from far away, but Sam can't really hear anything through the agony in his head.
Sam’s jeans are soaked with blood when he finally lifts his head. He’s shivering with pain and adrenaline, but there’s triumph underneath it all as he stands carefully, crossing the room to kneel in front of his brother.
“Please stay, Dean,” he says softly as he begins to saw at the ropes. “I need you. Please.”
Dean just stares at him for a moment, shocked. Emotions flit over his face too quickly for Sam to follow before settling on confusion. “Why, Sam? Why go through all this to bring me back after what I did?” His face twists again, self loathing wiping out everything else. “How can you even look at me?”
“Because you’re my brother and I love you,” Sam says simply. “Because I wanted everything you did that night. I was awake from the first moment you touched me, but I wanted you so badly, for so long. I selfishly let you think you were taking advantage of me because I was afraid if you knew I was awake you’d never touch me again.”
It’s not often Dean is speechless. Sam lets him process everything as he works on cutting the ropes still tying him to the chair. When Sam’s done, Dean rubs his wrists slowly, rolling his shoulders to loosen the stiff joints. Sam collapses wearily on the bed, wiping his hands and face on one of the pillows as he gives Dean some room. Dean flushes and looks away, unable to meet Sam’s eyes as they both remember what happened just a few days before. He looks at the door longingly, the idea of running still a clear temptation, but Sam doesn’t say anything.
Finally Dean breaks the silence. “This is really fucked up, Sam,” he says, low and pained. “Whether you wanted it or not, I didn’t know and I did it anyway. That’s just...and you let me. You let me think that I was hurting you.” He looks at Sam at last. “How do we come back from that?”
Sam shakes his head slowly. “I don’t know,” he says helplessly. “But we have to try. I can’t lose you, Dean. I can’t.” He stands up, approaching Dean cautiously. Dean doesn’t move away, just stares up at Sam with a trapped expression. Sam can see the pulse in his throat fluttering wildly but he doesn’t run. “I was hoping...maybe we could just try to accept that we’re both fucked up in some really weird ways that work together pretty well? We both want things we shouldn’t, but they’re the same things, and honestly fucked up is kind of the Winchester way.”
Sam lifts one hand slowly, carefully, giving Dean time to object if he’s going to. Dean pulls in a deep, shuddery breath but doesn’t move, eyes wide and dark and fixed on Sam with a mix of anguish, dread and hope. His eyes slip shut when Sam’s hand touches his cheek, brushing over the freckles standing out starkly against his pallor.
“Sam…” It’s a breath, hardly there, but it’s all Sam needs. He folds himself around Dean, tucking his face into Dean’s shoulder the way he’s done his whole life and Dean barely hesitates before wrapping him up, the way he’s done Sam’s whole life. It’s not perfect, but it’s them.
Sam can live with that.
Warnings: Wincest, perceived non-con, perceived somnophilia, angst
Summary: Sam will do whatever it takes to bring Dean back.
Sam starts gathering the tools and supplies he’ll need to put his plan in motion, a cold, stark clarity settling in his mind. He forces himself to think about the possibility that even if this works, even if he finds Dean and brings him back, he still might lose him. His hands work on autopilot, drawing the symbols and setting out candles for a ritual that shouldn’t be as familiar as it is.
Finally, the last piece is in place and Sam accepts that he’s going to do this, that if it will let him talk to Dean one more time, if it will give him even a chance at spending their last days together, then it’s worth it. He begins the chant, Latin dripping from his tongue as easily as English at this point, until he gets to the final word. He hesitates for just a moment, then spits it out before he can change his mind.
For long moments, nothing happens. Sam starts to worry--they hadn’t parted on good terms. Sam had refused to do what she insisted was necessary if he was going to destroy Lilith and save Dean, and the demon had left in a rage after Sam threatened to exorcise her if that’s what it took to force her away. It wasn’t impossible that she would ignore his summons, but Sam had a feeling she would show. If she didn’t...well. There were other ways to get what he wanted, and Sam was willing to try them all.
“Well, well, well. If it isn’t Sam Winchester, the man who wouldn’t be king.” Sam startles at the demon’s sudden appearance in the summoning circle, even though he’d been waiting. “Slumming, are we, Sam? Don’t tell me you’ve changed your mind.” Ruby arranges her face in an expression of mock concern. “How have you been, Sam? How’s that brother of yours? Still going to Hell in a handbasket?”
The words stick in Sam’s throat, but he forces them out anyway. “I need your help.”
“Not even a hello, Sam? Really? No ‘how have you been, Ruby?’, no ‘it’s nice to see you again, Ruby!’?” She sneers, crossing her arms over her chest. “No “Well, looks like you were right after all, Ruby’? Come on, Sam. You can grovel better than that.”
Sam ignores her taunting. “I need you to find Dean and bring him back here, Ruby. He left and I can’t find him.”
Surprise flickers across the demon’s face, followed by a split second of concentration before she bursts into laughter. “Oh. Oh, Sam. You have been naughty without me, haven’t you? And so has Dean. Well, I can’t say I’m surprised--”
“Can you do it or not?” Sam forces himself not to shout. You need her help, he reminds himself. “And stay out of my head.”
“But it’s so pretty in there, Sam!” She laughs again, shaking her head, then gets serious again. “If I do help you, what’s in it for me? I don’t work for free, Sam. And you know my price.”
“I’ll do what you wanted me to before,” Sam says through gritted teeth. He feels unclean just saying the words. “You wanted me to learn to use my powers and destroy Lilith. I’ll do it.”
“And what else did I want, Sam?” Ruby asks silkily. “Are you willing to pay the full price?”
Sam doesn’t even hesitate. “Yes. Find Dean and bring him back here and I’ll--I’ll drink your blood to strengthen my powers.”
Ruby claps delightedly. “That’s just what I wanted to hear.” She flicks her fingers and a knife appears in her hand. She offers it to Sam hilt first. “No time like the present, Sammy.”
“Don’t call me that,” Sam says coldly. He doesn’t move to take the knife. “Bring me Dean first, alive and unharmed, and then I’ll drink.”
Ruby rolls her eyes. “Oh, please. I wasn’t born yesterday, Sam. I need at least a token of good faith.” She smiles, a twisted parody of human feeling. “One little drink, Sam. Then I’ll bring Dean right to you, bound and maybe even gagged, if you two crazy kids are into that sort of thing.”
Sam just stares at her for a moment, considering. “Just bound,” he says at last. It’s not the best option, it will hardly make Dean trust him, but he can’t have his brother running away as soon as he realizes Sam is in the room too. Of course, sending a demon to bring him home isn’t exactly going to make happy either.
“You never cease to surprise me, Sam,” Ruby says, shaking her head. “Now, about that token…” She waves the knife impatiently.
“Fine,” Sam says, trying not to be sick. He steps forward, into the circle, but he doesn’t take the knife from Ruby’s hand. Instead, he brings up the demon knife she’d given him when they started this twisted relationship, slashing her arm in one quick movement. Lights flare and flash under her skin and she curses in surprise and anger. One flick of her uninjured arm sends Sam flying across the room and into the wall.
“You bastard,” she hisses, cradling her injured wrist.
Sam shakes his head and blinks, then smiles. “Waste not, want not,” he says calmly, and brings the knife to his lips, licking the black ichor from the blade. It tastes vile, iron and sulfur and rotting meat but he forces himself not to gag as he cleans both sides. It burns the inside of his mouth and throat as he swallows audibly and he feels nauseous and light headed. “Is that enough for you?” he asks unsteadily.
Ruby shakes her head, a cruel smile playing over her lips. “Oh, Sammy,” she sighs. “You have no idea how long I’ve been waiting for this moment.” She holds out her wounded arm, black oozing from the cut and adding to the stains on the carpet. “Now let’s get this show on the road.”
Sam stands carefully and walks on shaky legs to the center of the circle where she’s waiting. He stares down at her for a long moment, lips pressed thin, then opens his mouth and begins to drink.
The taste and feel of it drives him to his knees. It coats his tongue and throat like sticky, foul tasting syrup, it burns like acid. His stomach lurches with every swallow, and he can feel the power from it invading every part of his body. He wonders, dimly, just how much this will change him. A few drops when he was six months old made him psychic and telekinetic; what will this do to him? He drinks until he can’t anymore, determined to see it through even with his vision narrowing down to pinpoints and the power screaming through his veins like fire.
He doesn’t so much let go of her arm as fall to the floor. He can see her smirking down at him, barely, so far away.
“Aww, poor Sammy. Probably shouldn’t have taken so much your first time around--it’s a bit of an acquired taste. Now, why don’t you be a dear and scratch through this circle so I can go fetch your brother? I’m sure you have a lot of catching up to do.”
With the last of his strength Sam scrapes through the paint holding the demon in place. “Nighty-night, Sammy,” she coos, and then the world goes dark.
Warnings: Wincest, perceived non-con, perceived somnophilia, angst
Summary: The morning after isn't quite what Sam hoped for.
Sam wakes up happy. He stretches luxuriously, enjoying the pull and ache in his muscles before he realizes he’s half dressed again. A frown creases his forehead as he shakes off his sleep fog and realizes how quiet it is. Dean isn’t breathing in the bed next to his, the shower isn’t running.
The thread of unease running through Sam grows as he sits up and sees that Dean’s jacket isn’t thrown over the back of the desk chair like he’d expect it to be. His unease grows into something approaching panic as he looks around and sees that Dean’s duffle is gone as well. The realization that he’s misjudged everything hits him like a dash of cold water and he grabs his phone off the nightstand, fingers shaking as he punches in the only number he knows by heart.
The phone rings on the seat next to him but Dean doesn’t pick up. He knows it’s Sam--the kid is nothing if not predictable. He grips the wheel tighter, determined not to answer, ignoring the voice in his head telling him he’s making his biggest mistake yet.
Sam listens to the phone ring, tinny and distant. He doesn’t leave a message this time. If Dean wants to talk to him, he will. Sam doesn’t let himself think about what it means if Dean doesn’t call him back.
Sam stays at the motel where Dean left him for three days, hoping that Dean will come back. He knows it’s pointless--he found Dean’s note and once his head cleared from sleep and painkillers he knows just how badly he screwed up. They both did. He spends the first day beating himself up, playing it back in his mind over and over, hating himself for how badly he wants Dean’s hands on him again. The second day he wakes up angry, at himself and at Dean. He almost takes off then, determined to let his brother go his own way if that's what he really wants. But the thought of Dean’s deal, that he might never see his brother again, that Dean might go to hell thinking he raped his brother--he spends the next hour in the bathroom retching up the cheap coffee from the motel lobby.
The third day--it’s after midnight, so it counts as a new day in Sam’s mind--he finally calls Bobby. Sam doesn’t have much hope that Dean will go to their old friend, but he needs to touch base himself, and Bobby loves Dean like a son. He deserves to know what’s happening, or at least the results.
“We had a fight, Bobby. Dean left,” Sam repeats slowly for what feels like the hundredth time. “He took the Impala and he’s not answering his phone.”
Sam listens again then says in frustration, “Does it matter what we fought about? He thinks he did something wrong, that he deserves to go to hell. He thinks he hurt me, but he didn’t. It was just as much my fault as it was his, but he didn’t stick around long enough for me to say so and now he’s gone!”
The silence on the other end tells Sam he may have gone a little too far. Sam waits for Bobby to figure it out and hang up on him, but after a too long moment Bobby clears his throat. “Well, if you say it’s...uh...personal, then that’s good enough I guess. You got any ideas where he might go?”
“No,” Sam whispers miserably. “If he were trying to hide from anyone else I could find him easy enough, but he’s trying to hide from me.”
More silence on the other end tells Sam that Bobby is having just as much trouble processing this as Sam is.
“We’ve got to find him, Bobby. He’s got less than a year left and he won’t even try to save himself. We’ve got to find him.”
“Sam…” Bobby’s voice is cautious, careful. Like he thinks Sam might break under the weight of any more bad news. “Did he tell you about the terms of his deal?”
Sam laughs bitterly. “You mean like how I die if Dean lifts a finger to save himself? Yeah, I dragged it out of him eventually. But that doesn’t mean we can’t save him, Bobby. It just means…” Sam trails off as he realizes the answer is staring him in the face.
“Just keep looking, Bobby,” he says, too quickly. “I will too. I’ve got a few ideas, not much, but they could pan out.”
“Don’t you do anything stupid, Sam,” Bobby warns. “One idjit per family is plenty. And you...you boys are like my own sons. I can’t lose you both, you hear me?” The barely there tremble in Bobby’s voice hurts Sam’s heart, but Sam can’t let Bobby’s feelings stop him. There’s too much at stake, and Sam won’t risk losing Dean again. He hardens his resolve to see this through and do whatever he has to in order to save Dean.
“You won’t lose us, Bobby,” Sam promises quietly. As he hangs up he tells himself he’s not lying--at least one of them will survive. Sam will see to that.