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This Time Around (3/4)

Part 2 / Master Post

Dean screamed. He tried to hold it in, but the demon dug her nails into his belly, and the scream just got away from him. The demon smiled affectionately, like he was an adorable child. She stroked his hair and painted pictures on his skin with his blood. It was so freakin’ easy to make her happy.

The pain was bad, but it was the talking that was going to kill him. The demon, who called herself Meg, just loved the sound of her own voice. If Dean heard one more word about the Winchester family’s demonic destiny, he was going to disembowel himself and save her the trouble.

“Damn but you’re a beautiful boy,” she said, her voice low and husky next to his ear. “But you know it’s Sam I want, Sam I need.”

Dean would have killed her if he could have. “What do you want from him?”

“Not from him. I want the world for him. Can’t you see the difference?” she crooned, and her words crawled like spiders across his skin. “It’s always been about Sam.”

Dean would have ripped out his own guts before he would give her the satisfaction of hearing him scream again. But she slipped her fingernails into the wound she had just made, prying skin from muscle. Dean couldn’t help it—he yelled and cursed like hell simply because it hurt so damn much. She was so very good at making it hurt.

Her fingers traced sigils with the blood on his belly. Then they stilled, and she made a pleased little sound in the back of her throat. Dean heard the turn of a doorknob, but before he could look up, she had her hands around his neck with her unnaturally tight grip.

“Sam!” Meg said delightedly. “Dean and I were just talking about you.”

She eased up enough on the chokehold that Dean was able to catch a glimpse of his dad and brother filling the doorway. John had his sawed-off aimed right at them.

“Get the hell away from my son,” he growled.

Dean swore under his breath. What was Dad thinking, bringing Sam into the middle of this? It was like he was serving Sam up on a platter to this thing.

Before she could stop him, Dean managed to say, “It’s a trap— Dad get Sam out of here!”

Dean felt a sharp edge press warningly against his bared neck. Meg and her damn knife—he could already feel blood trickling down. She had told him she only liked to use it while slitting throats. Kept her edge from getting dull that way.

Sam cried out and took a step toward them. “Dean!”

Dean was going to kill him. It had been so long since Dean had seen him up close—not including the hospital when Sam had been taken down by the bout with meningitis. Dean wanted to drink his brother in, get a good, long look at him, but he couldn’t. It wasn’t the right time. The freakin’ idiot was out in the open—Dad must have thought so too because he lost his aim making a grab for Sam.

“Stay the hell behind me,” John hissed, trying to shove Sam back.

“This is more than I could’ve hoped for—the whole family is here.” Meg stroked Dean’s neck with the edge of the blade. “And they say that God doesn’t give with both hands.”

Well aware of the knife at his neck, Dean carefully turned his head, trying to get a look at her. “Let them go—you got me. I’ll…I’ll cooperate this time.”

Meg snorted. “Sorry Dean, but you’ve cooperated just fine. Baby, you’re just the bait.”

Dad’s face was grim. “Let my son go, and you can have me.”

Dean heard Meg swear under her breath. “If you know what I want, then you can cut the self-sacrificial crap, John.” Easing up with the knife, Meg came around to stand beside him. Dean could see that she had her head cocked almost affectionately as she gazed at Sam. “You should be so proud. It’s a miracle really…so much power in just a boy.”

“You stay the hell away from my brother!” Dean spat out, and the knife was back at his throat.

“I think I’m gonna slit your throat…just a little.”

There was pressure and hot pain. Dean could feel the warm blood trickling down. He squeezed his eyes shut tight, was not going to scream, but he could hear both Sam and his dad yelling.

“Oh, that’s cute. You brought a how-to book. Sam, are you trying to exorcise me?”

Dean opened his eyes at that. Sure enough, Sam was frantically thumbing through what looked like The Book of the Freakin’ Damned—the ancient textbook was practically decomposing as he turned the pages.

John was glaring. “Sam, what the hell? Do the one you memorized.”

“She’s too powerful. Wouldn’t work,” Sam said, and Meg made that pleased little sound again.

“That’s so sweet, Sam, and flattering. But you haven’t seen powerful. Watch this.”

Meg just smiled as the book practically tore itself out of Sam’s hands and sailed across the room, pages flying, landing at the foot of a supply closet.

“Sonofabitch,” he heard his dad swear.

Dean felt the sting of salt before it even registered that Dad had fired off a round. Meg’s knife clattered to the ground. Dean glanced up and could see Meg with her hands over her face. When she looked up, he could see patches that looked like raw hamburger, blood already dripping from the broken skin. Dean didn’t think any of it had hit him. Dad was one helluva good shot.

“Ouch,” she said pointedly, but the smile on her face was pure malevolence. “Amateur move, John. I’d have expected more from you than that. I don’t just disappear with salt. I’m not a ghost.” She pointed at him, and the sawed-off went careening, hitting the wall with enough force that it cracked down the middle. “Let’s close the door and give ourselves some privacy.”

The door slammed shut. Her eyes narrowed. “That’s better. Now where were we?”

Dean felt pressure build up behind his eyes. He didn’t even have time to register it as pain before the air in the room seemed to ripple like a shockwave. Dean’s chair started shaking like there was an earthquake. Meg put her hand on the back of it. “Settle down, Dean,” she said lightly. “You’re not going anywhere.”

Dean’s teeth were chattering in his head from the intensity of it, and he was about to yell at Sam to say the damn exorcism already when Sam and Dad went flying backwards. Dean swore when he heard the sound of their heads making dull thumps when they hit the wall.

“Sammy! Dad!” he yelled, as his chair continued to rock in the aftershock of all that power.

Pinned against the wall, Sam started reciting, “Ne reminiscáris, Dómini, delicta nostra, vel paréntum nostrórum: neque vindíctam sumas de peccátis…”

Dean could translate enough to know it was an exorcism prayer, but Sam had already said the one he’d memorized didn’t have the power to exorcise a demon like Meg. Not for the first time, Dean hoped his little brother was wrong. Demons weren’t their usual gig, and most of what Dean knew came from old hunter lore or religious tracts.

But something was happening. The air in the room seemed to still, but there was an electric feel to it, like the calm before a thunderstorm. Meg came to stand beside Dean. He could see that she was trembling, could almost see the demon seething underneath her skin. Sam’s exorcism had some mojo after all.

Despite the shaking, she managed to bend over and pick up the knife off the ground. She held the knife poised over Dean’s exposed belly.

“Stop. Stop now, or I’ll gut your brother.” Sam stopped his incantation, and Dean could see him staring in horror at the knife. “A prodigy like you should know better—prayer isn’t gonna do the job.”

Dad was still pinned to the wall, but sweat was pouring off his face, and Dean could see that he was trembling with the exertion of trying to pull free. “Finish the goddamn exorcism, Sam.”

Dad was right. Dean could feel himself growing shaky, but he pleaded, “Don’t stop, Sammy. End this.”

Sam’s eyes went to Dad first, and then to Dean. His stare hardened when he looked at Meg. “Get away from my brother.”

She smiled viciously. “Make me…demon boy.”

That was when Dean saw the expression on his father’s face that had nothing to do with the situation and everything to do with what Meg had just called his little brother. Demon boy. Dad wasn’t just pissed—he was terrified. And that was a look Dean had almost never seen on his father.

What do you know about my brother?

Meg raised the knife, and Dean knew she wasn’t bluffing. A good hunter never looked away, but Dean shut his eyes, having no desire to see his entrails up close and personal.

Getting stabbed felt more like a hammer than like pain. Then it felt like nothing at all. There was noise—the thunder of his own heart beating. He could hear his pulse echoing in his ears. Dean heard his dad yelling for Sam to exorcise the damn thing, for Meg to back off.

But then Dean heard something else. He heard Sam scream a single word—


And everything changed.

There was a concussive blast that felt like a mighty wind. Meg screamed, and as if from a great distance, Dean heard Dad shouting at Sam to stop. There was noise, crunching and breaking, glass shattering, howling and moaning, the song of demons and of angels.

It was too much. Dean couldn’t stay…he couldn’t open his eyes, couldn’t face this cold, unfriendly world.

Sam and Dad would have to fight this one without him. Dean curled into himself and went away.


“Dean, I need you to wake up. C’mon, listen to me, son. Wake up.”

Dean squinted. Dad’s face was haloed by the florescent lights…it was too bright, like looking into the sun. But Dad put his hands on either side of Dean’s face.

“We gotta get out of here. Sam needs you, Dean, c’mon.”

Sam needed him?

“Sammy? Dad…what happened?”

“It’s okay. I just need you up… get you out of here.”

Dean lifted his head and tried to get his bearings. There was blood everywhere. He was soaked with it, but Dad had found his shirt and had it bunched up and pressed against the wound. It didn’t hurt nearly as much as it should have—shock was probably blunting the worst of it.

“The demon?”

“She’s gone.” There was flatness to Dad’s voice that spoke of a hunt gone bad. It made Dean’s stomach clench up in a way that had nothing to do with being stabbed.

“Where’s Sam?” he asked, suddenly scared even though Sam should be okay. Sam had been pinned against the wall next to Dad, but the demon hadn’t touched him, hadn’t turned on him with that knife, hadn’t turned him into the thing she swore he was going to be.

Demon boy…

“Dean, we gotta get out of here. The girl that the demon possessed…she’s not in great shape. We’re gonna call 911 but we gotta get out of here first.”


“He’s all right. He’s with the girl.”

Meg. Her name was Meg. “She’s from Chicago,” he said slowly. It was starting to come back to him. “Did the exorcism work?”

“The demon’s gone,” John said gruffly. “I need you to get up. Dean, are you tracking with me?”

Dean tried to nod. But his brain was stuck on the basics. “Sam…?”

He heard Sam call out, “I’m over here, Dean. I’m okay.”

But Sam sounded strange, all shaken up. Fragile. It didn’t make sense. What the hell happened while he was out?

Dad grabbed him by the arm and hauled him up. Dean shook his head a little, trying to clear his thinking but then became aware of the smell. Labs were supposed to smell like bleach and embalming crap, but Dean could smell puke and blood and the stink of sulfur.

Like an arthritic old man, he stumbled across the blood-slick floor with his arm slung over Dad’s shoulders. Dean kept the makeshift bandage pressed to his gut, but the wound was starting to throb. He guessed he wasn’t in shock any more.

They turned around a lab workstation, and there was Sam. Dean had to blink to make sense of what he was seeing when he looked at his brother.

There was blood. Dean couldn’t even tell where all of it was coming from, but a lot of it was coming from his nose. Dean had never seen a nose bleed like that. Sam’s neck and collar were soaked with it.

“What the hell…” Dean started for him, but John held onto him.

“Not now. We’ve gotta get you two out of here and get help for the girl.”

Dean took a better look at Meg. She was unconscious, but her chest was rising and falling; she was breathing. Sam was holding her hand, and Dean couldn’t constrain his gut-level shudder. But she was just a girl sleeping, not a demon.

“She’s cold…” Sam looked up, and his eyes widened when he looked at Dean, like he had only just noticed his presence. “Dean…you okay?”

He started pushing to his feet but didn’t make it. John reached down and grabbed hold of him. He stood between the two of them…his bloodied, reeling sons. What a family, Dean thought to himself, and it occurred to him that he might be a little bit delirious.

Dean took a better look at Sam, as John practically dragged them toward the door. “What’s the deal with your arm? It’s bleeding.”

Sam looked down at his blood-soaked sleeve like he was seeing it for the first time.

“I got stabbed by Macbeth,” Sam said, his words coming out slurred. Then he grinned crookedly. “Hey Dean—you and me…we both got stabbed.”

Dean glared and asked his father, “What the hell’s wrong with him? Did he hit his head?”

Dad did not look happy. “He’s a little out of it. We’ll talk when we get someplace safe.”

Dean felt dizzy and nauseous from the blood loss and the pain, but he forced himself to keep his eyes open as they slowly made their way across the long lab. He couldn’t figure out what the hell had happened. The place looked like it had been bombed. Shattered glass lay everywhere. Even the stainless steel counters were dented and spattered with blood and puke.

It looked like some kind of hellish battlefield, which made no sense because Dad and Sam had been pinned against the wall immobile, while the demon had been stabbing Dean and—

Sam stopped short, and John almost tripped over him.

“Sam, watch where you’re going,” John snapped, but Sam barely missed John’s shoes as he started to retch.

“That explains the puke,” Dean mumbled under his breath. “Don’t let him get it all over himself.”

Dean braced himself against a counter and frowned, while Dad held onto Sam until he was done. It was like some straight-to-DVD horror flick. Dean couldn’t believe the kid had anything left.

John turned and said grimly, “We’re getting out of here. Now.”

Dean knew that voice and knew not to argue. But he took a last look around the wrecked laboratory. Something big had happened, it had sucked in his kid brother, and Dad was running scared.

“Yes sir,” he said.

But Dean wasn’t letting this one go.


The motel room looked like a Civil War field hospital—bloodied bandages strewn around, gory knives that would need to be sterilized with holy water and antiseptic, a few ancient surgical tools Dean recognized from his childhood, a couple half-empty bottles of whiskey. Then there was Sam, passed out on the bed like any other casualty of war.

And Dean still didn’t know what the fuck was wrong with his brother.

Dean couldn’t stop pacing. Even with the painkillers and whiskey, the stitches hurt like hell, and he knew he should get off his feet, but he just couldn’t stand waiting. The wound wasn’t that deep, and Dad had done a good job stitching him up and keeping his guts where they belonged. It had been a while, and he hadn’t pissed blood, so he was pretty sure Dad’s call had been the right one as far as he was concerned—no internal bleeding, no hospital.

Sam was a different matter. Sam should be awake by now. Dad insisted he hadn’t gotten a concussion, but Dean didn’t know of anything that would knock someone out cold like that.

“Dean, you need to sit down,” Dad said, weariness in his voice.

Dean hardly spared him a glance. They’d already had this conversation.

“Why won’t he wake up?” Dean demanded.

“He’s sleeping it off.” John didn’t look up from cleaning his extra shotgun. They’d had to leave the broken sawed-off behind. John had the pieces all laid out on the table and was running the brush through the barrel.

“Sleeping what off? I don’t understand why you won’t tell me.”

“We can talk about it later.”

“Why can’t we talk about it now?” Dean retorted, realizing that he sounded an awful lot like Sam used to, back in the days when Dad could never make a simple statement without Sam bitching about it.

“Dean…” There was a world of warning in the way Dad said his name. “I mean it. We’ll talk about it once Sam’s awake.”

Dean bit his lip hard, trying to keep himself from saying something he couldn’t take back. He watched Dad wet a patch with solvent and run it through the barrel. His dad looked calm, but Dean knew better. Dad always cleaned his guns when he was upset.

After a couple minutes of pacing the length of the motel room, Dean sat in the chair they’d pulled up beside Sam’s bed. He hadn’t had the chance to really get a good look at his brother, not with Dad there. Dean hadn’t thought it possible, but Sam looked like he’d gotten even taller, even from a few months earlier, when Dean had seen him in the hospital at Stanford. But then again, Sam had been Sammy in that hospital bed, attached to every machine and monitor medical technology had to offer. Leave it Sam to leave a life of hunting only to get taken down by some freakin’ bacteria.

Dean felt like he could throw up, just thinking about Sam getting sick like that. And here Sam was now, hurt by something that Dad refused to discuss and Dean didn’t understand. A stab wound hurt like a bitch, but it made sense. That kind of injury followed a familiar road of pain and healing, and Dean had been there, done that…knew what to expect. This thing with Sam was unknown. Dean had no idea what had happened in the laboratory that could have knocked Sam out like that. And there was all the bleeding.

It took everything he had to refrain from pushing Sam’s hair out of his eyes. Idiot kid needed a haircut…it would serve him right if Dean decided to cut it while he was out for the count.

Dean turned from his brother and asked his father, “Why did you go and get Sam?”

Dad was dampening his rag with gun oil. “What do you mean—why did I get him?”

“Why did you get him from Stanford?”

“It wasn’t safe there. The fact you tracked that demon to Palo Alto should tell you that.”

“Her name was Meg.”

Dad looked up and stared. “What?”

“The demon. Her name was Meg.”

“No.” John slowly said the word like Dean was a friggin’ kid, as he wiped down the wood of the gun. “The girl’s name is Meg Masters. The demon’s name was not Meg.”

Dean remembered the ink black eyes of the demon and couldn’t imagine how there could have been a human being trapped inside. “How do you know her last name?”

“Caleb called the hospital for me—pretended to be East Palo Alto police. Hospital said she’d be all right, she just had contusions and one hell of a concussion.”

“Is she talking to police?”

“She was interviewed because of all the blood and crap in the lab. From what Caleb found out, they’re attributing a lot of her story to head injury. Hopefully, she’ll remember enough to keep quiet about it.” John began reassembling the gun. “Dean, I don’t know more than that, and there’s no reason to risk finding out more. She’s just a girl—the demon’s gone.”

The tone in Dad’s voice clearly indicated that there was nothing more to say. If Dad said the subject was closed, then the subject was closed. Dean watched his dad pull out his Glock and start disassembling it. Dad wasn’t telling him all that he knew. Dean was sure of it.

From the bed, Sam moaned in his sleep, turning his head a little. Dean turned back to him, willing his brother to just wake up. The worry in his gut hurt as much as the stitches. But Sam didn’t stir after that...it was all Dean could do not to lean over and shake him.

But Dad had said no before, and Dad was usually right. At least, he’d always been right before. Since when had Dean doubted that Dad had their best interests at heart?

Dean sighed heavily and waited.


It had been a day, and Sam still hadn’t woken up.

“Maybe he needs a hospital,” Dean said, getting up from the other bed to start pacing again. Dad hadn’t moved from his chair by the table in hours. He’d cleaned every weapon they owned, so now there was nothing to do but take out maps and stare.

John looked up and said, “He doesn’t need a hospital. He just needs to sleep it off.”

“That’s what you said last night. I think he’s done enough sleeping.”

Dean glared at his brother as if it were Sam’s fault somehow. It wasn’t, but Dean was going out of his mind. Sam hadn’t even woken up when they’d stripped him and cleaned him up earlier that morning. Dean had distracted himself from his brother’s terrifyingly lax body by imagining how he would tease him later about getting a sponge bath from the old man. Didn’t get much worse than that.

“This was bad.” John rubbed his hands across his face. “Sam hasn’t had to do anything like that before.”

“Like what?”

“I said we’d talk about it later.”

Dean swore under his breath.

“What did you say?” Dad stood and walked over to him, and Dean couldn’t help but remember that his dad still had a couple inches on him.

Dean squared his shoulders, even though it was agonizing to stand up straight like that. “You heard me.”

“No, I don’t think I did. I think you’d better say it again, Dean.” Dad’s voice had gone ominously quiet, the way it used to when he was pissed at Sam.

“If you don’t tell me what’s wrong with him, I’m going to call 911.” Dean had no idea where his courage was coming from these days. First, he’d taken off after Dad told him not to, had tracked down a friggin’ demon on his own, and now he was threatening to break the first rule of the Winchester Code.

Never. Ever. Call 911.

John jabbed a finger at his chest. “You do that, and I want you to think about what’s gonna happen. Sam’s been stabbed. Sam is a Stanford student, and there was an unexplained incident in a Stanford lab, one that he just happens to have a key card for. You really interested in getting your brother in that kind of trouble?”

“No sir,” Dean said reluctantly.

But Sam’s nose hadn’t even stopped bleeding. It would bleed for a while, slow to a thick trickle, and then stop. Dean would get him cleaned up, and then it would start again. There was blood all over the sheets and the pillow.

Dean glanced over and realized that Dad’s death glare was still being aimed in his direction. He snapped, “How ‘bout you telling me why you’re so mad at me?”

“How about you telling me why you ignored orders and took off on your own?”

Oh yeah…that. Dean had sort of hoped that tracking down the demon would make up for that.

“That thing wanted Sam,” he said. “What was I supposed to do…wait until it went after him? You don’t know the things she said about him—”

John froze, his face suddenly unreadable. “What kinds of things?”

“Bad things. Crazy shit.” Dean turned away quickly, wincing at the pain in his gut.

“Tell me what she said.”

Dean glanced uneasily over at Sam. “It was just crazy. She was a demon, Dad. Demons lie.”

“They tell the truth more often,” John said almost to himself, and Dean felt the truth of it settle cold in his belly.

Dean glanced at his brother, sacked out on the bed. “How about I tell you what she said…then you tell me how Sam exorcised her.”

“You bargaining with me, Dean?” There was no mistaking the edge in Dad’s voice.

“Yes, sir,” Dean said, squaring his shoulders.

“This is your brother’s life we’re talking about.”

“Yes, sir,” Dean repeated, holding his ground. “And that’s why I’m not backing down.”

They stared at each other, neither looking away. Dad had won at every game of chicken Dean had ever tried to play, but Sam used to win his share. Dean had spent the bulk of his life watching Sam try to best their father, so he’d learned from the very best.

After a quiet minute John said, “You don’t ever walk out on me, again. Do you understand? I’ll tear you a new one, you ever do anything like that again.”

Dean let out the breath he’d been holding. For the first time in his life, he had won.

“Yes, sir.”

John gestured toward the table by the window. “Sit down. You need to stay off your feet.”

Dean glanced back at Sam. The kid was sleeping on his stomach, legs all splayed out, breathing out of his mouth, blood dripping lazily from his nose onto the pillow. They’d been trained as kids to sleep on their backs, but Sam couldn’t, not with that wound. Dean had studied the wound when Dad had bandaged it.

A dozen stitches. Dad said it could’ve been worse. Another couple of inches, and Sam would’ve been dead. When Dean asked what had happened, Dad had simply said that Sammy had had his back to a ghost, left himself open…a classic rookie mistake, all those years at college making him forget the way they’d raised him.

But for Dean, that explanation didn’t carry much weight. Dad should’ve been the one to have Sam’s back. A hunter was only as good as his partner.

But Dean hadn’t said that out loud.

Warily, he took the chair across the table from his father.

“What did the demon say?” John asked with typical bluntness.

Dean kept his eye on the bed, making sure that Sam was still out. “She said that Sam was special. She said her father had plans for him.”

John leaned forward. “Who the hell is her father?”

Dean shook his head. “She didn’t say. I got the feeling she wasn’t talking about her father who art in heaven either. But she did say that Sam was her father’s freakin’ life’s work. But Dad…there’s something else.”


Dean took a deep breath. “She told me that her father is the thing that killed Mom.”

John looked like he’d been sucker-punched. “What did she say?”

“Meg said Mom got in the way.”

“Shit.” Dad buried his face in his hands.

Dean waited, gave Dad a moment, and then asked. “What does it mean? Did you know?”

Dad rubbed his hands over his face. “I suspected. Just—damn. I’m gonna end this thing, I swear to you, I’m gonna end it.”

“What is it? What does it want from Sam?”

“Dean…” John looked at him with that raw intensity. “You need to look out for your brother.”

Incredulously, Dean protested, “Dad, I always do. You know that. I always look out for Sam, even when he’s at school.”

“You can’t let him go back to Stanford.”

“Why the hell not?”

John raised an eyebrow, obviously surprised. “You want him to go back to Stanford? Since when?”

Dean glanced back at Sam. His nose was starting to bleed again. Dean would have to clean him up before it got bad.

“Answer me, son.”

Dean slapped his hand on the glass top of the table, making the cheap piece of furniture wobble. “Take a look at him—this isn’t right. He hasn’t woken up for hours, and you won’t tell me what’s wrong with him. You won’t tell me how he exorcised Meg, and you think he’s better off here with us? Dad, we’re not doing a bang-up job of keeping him safe.”

His father’s mouth quirked up. “You sound like Sam.”

“Sam wasn’t always wrong,” Dean snapped, amazed at his own guts at saying that to his father.

“No. He wasn’t,” John admitted. Astonished, Dean wondered what the hell had happened between Sam and Dad while he had been gone.

“Okay, it’s my turn. How did Sam exorcise Meg? What’s wrong with him?”

John took a deep breath and let it out with great weariness. “Your brother has been having visions.”

“What do you mean, he’s having visions?”

“Visions about the future. They’ve mostly been about his girl, but the last one was about you.”

“What the hell are you talking about?” Without realizing it, Dean had pushed his chair back from the table, away from his father. “Why me?”

“I don’t know,” John said. “We haven’t had a lot of time to figure things out.”

“How do you know they were about me? How do you even know they were visions? Sammy’s always had a freaky imagination.”

John said dryly, “Sam saw you tied to a chair in a Stanford lab. He saw Meg…he saw the demon gut you. That’s how we knew where to find you. It would take one helluva imagination to get that right.”

Dean shook his head, trying to clear it. “Are you saying Sam’s like a mind reader or something?”

John snorted. “God, I hope not.”

This wasn’t funny. “Then what?”

“He seems to be able to see the future…mostly people dying. He’d been having dreams for months while he was at school, but now they’re happening while he’s awake.”

Dean stood up and shoved the chair back, hardly noticing when it toppled over. “We’ve got to stop them.”

“Stop what?”

“Sam’s visions, what do you think? There’s gotta be something, some spell, some kind of ward. Does anyone else know?”

John nodded. “Bobby was there when it happened.”

Bobby? What the hell? Since when were Dad and Bobby even in the same room together? Dean couldn’t process all that right now. “Did you know about this? All those deaths, cattle mutilations, the storms you’ve been tracking…did you know this had to do with Sam?”

“Of course, I knew,” John snapped. “It’s always been about Sam.”

“That’s what she said.” Dean took another step back toward Sam’s bed. He wasn’t sure why but he wanted to keep his body in between Sam and Dad. Dean took a look at Sam, who was still sleeping though his forehead was furrowed, eyes moving underneath closed lids.

“What who said?” John asked impatiently.

“Meg. She said it was all about Sam.”

“Dean—don’t overreact. And you need to lie the hell down. You’re bleeding again.”

Dean looked down. The wound on his belly was bleeding through the bandage…he hadn’t noticed. But that didn’t matter.

“How did Sam exorcise Meg?”


“Tell me, Dad.”

“With his mind.” John looked away, toward the door. “Your brother exorcised the demon with his mind.”

The world as Dean knew it took a sickening lurch. He couldn’t make sense of what his dad said. They were talking about Sammy, not some supernatural freak… Dad must have gotten it wrong.

“What the hell, Dad?”

“The exorcism wasn’t working. She stabbed you. She was holding up her knife and was going to stab you again, and Sam got his hand free somehow. He reached out. God, I don’t know what happened, Dean. Her hold on us eased up, and I tried to get to you, wanted to stop her, but the demon was coming out of her mouth. It was like this toxic grey smoke…the stench of sulfur—It was evil, son. I’ve never seen anything like it.”

Dean focused on trying to breathe, but his eyes were filling up. His whole world was spinning out of control. “And Sam?”

“He collapsed, but there was so much blood....”

Dean remembered Sam in the lab when he was still conscious, his pupils blown. The entire drive back to the motel, Sam’s head had been lolling on his neck. He’d been mumbling words, sounds. Dean had been sure he’d gotten some sort of concussion, and Dad just hadn’t noticed. Maybe Sam had blown a fuse, had had some kind of a stroke. He could have bleeding on his brain, and they wouldn’t have known.

Sounding a lot calmer than he felt, Dean said, “Dad, we gotta get him to a hospital.”

John shook his head. “He’ll be fine. He was conscious for an hour afterward.”

“And he’s been unconscious ever since. C’mon, Dad, you know better than this. He could have brain damage!”

“It’s always bad—” John stopped, cleared his throat, glanced back over at the bed. “After his visions, it’s bad. This is just a little…worse.”

A little worse? ” Dean growled incredulously. “Dad, you make it sound like this is no big deal.”

“Of course it’s a big deal,” John retorted. “Sam’s powers are a big deal. This changes everything.”

Dean just stared. With a sickening thud of certainty, he understood where Dad was coming from.

“You want to use this—don’t you?”

John’s eyes narrowed. “What do you mean?”

“Sam’s visions. His freaky mojo shit. You think we can use it.”

“I didn’t say that.”

“But you’re thinking it. I know you are.” Dean edged closer to the bed. Any closer, he’d be falling on top of Sam. “You’re not gonna use him. I won’t let you.”

Dad gaped at him. “You don’t know what you’re saying.”

“I know exactly what I’m saying.” The truth was that Dean could hardly believe he was actually saying it. “My brother is not a weapon. I won’t let you treat him like one.”

Dad’s hand shot out lightning fast and grabbed hold of Dean’s arm. “You watch yourself, boy. Sam is my son, and you don’t get to tell me how I treat him.”

Dad’s grip was going to bruise, but Dean didn’t care. He could feel himself shaking, as much with anger as with pain. The last time he’d been this furious with his father was the night that Sam left for Stanford. Even then, he had never stood up to his father before, not like this.

His voice uneven, he said, “Dad, we’re talking about Sam.”

John didn’t let go, but his grip eased up a little. “We’re talking about the thing that killed your mother. The thing that has plans for your brother. For years, there’s been nothing—no signs, no portents, nothing. Now, it’s back, and people are dying. Mothers are dying, Dean. We can’t let this thing destroy other families, the way it destroyed ours.”

Dean shook his head. “Our family’s not destroyed, Dad. We’re right here. Sam and me…we’re here. Doesn’t that mean anything to you?”

John shook his head and let go of Dean’s arm. “I’m not letting this thing get away.”

There was a low groan, and they both turned.

Sam was stirring, his eyes slowly opening. “God, you’re both so loud.”

Dean couldn’t help it—his face melted into a smile so big it hurt. He hadn’t realized how terrified he had been until now, seeing Sam’s eyes open again.

“Hey, Sammy!” Dean sat down awkwardly on the edge of the bed, his knee jiggling up and down. “You’re awake.”

“Cut it out,” Sam said, swatting at his leg, and Dean stopped—hadn’t really known he was bouncing.

Dean poked him gently on the shoulder. “You and your lazy ass ready to get out of bed any time soon?”

“Saving your sorry ass took a lot out of me.” But Sam was smiling too and left his hand on Dean’s knee.

“You saved me?” Dean retorted, cuffing Sam gently on his good arm. “You’re the one who got yourself stabbed on a pansy ghost job.”

“You got stabbed too…and by a girl,” Sam shot back. Then he smirked. “Jerk.”

“She was a fucking demon.” Dean couldn’t stop grinning. “Bitch.”

“Boys.” John cleared his throat.

Dean turned around. “Hey Dad, Sammy’s awake!”

“Yes, I can see that.” At least, Dad looked mildly amused. “Dean, stop bouncing your brother. I don’t want him puking all over the bed. The blood is bad enough.”

Dean snorted, and Sam poked at Dean’s bandage with a question in his eyes.

“I’m fine,” he said, not wanting Sam to have to ask it.

And Sam nodded and said, “Me too. I’m glad you’re here, Dean.”

It was all so freakin’ awesome that Dean wanted to cash in his chips right there and then. He was fine for forgetting he’d ever heard Dad’s crazy story about Sammy’s superpowers and freaky mojo crap.

But Sam said quietly, “Dad, there’s something I need to tell you. The demon—I think I know its name.”


As it turned out, Dad and Sam had gone off the batshit crazy cliff together. The two of them claimed Dean was overreacting—yeah sure, this was all about him being a drama queen. But apparently, Sam and Dad were in full agreement on the stupidest plan in Winchester family history, which was seriously saying something.

The grand plan was this—they were going to summon the demon that murdered Mom, and then they were going to kill it. Or exorcise it. Or whatever the hell you do to get rid of the demon that ruined your life. This apparently was an awesome idea, because the fight with Meg had gone so friggin’ well.

Dean was not happy.

But Dad kept claiming the timing was right. Said they had to hit hard while the trail was still hot. Then Dad had made the statement that was still making Dean want to tear the room apart.

“We need to make full use of Sammy’s visions.”

And Sam had just stood there agreeably, like the idea of Dad using him as some kind of demon lightning rod was a stroke of genius.

“No way.” Dean had wanted to shake the hell out of both of them. “No fucking way.”

“It makes sense, Sam had said. “We don’t know how long the visions are going to keep happening.”

“I hope to God they stop happening,” Dean had shot back.

“Dean,” Dad had said irritably. “It’s a pattern. The closer we get to the demon, the stronger Sam’s visions become.”

“Then, I say we get the hell away from the demon.”

Dad had sighed. “Running away isn’t going to fix this, Dean.”

Yeah, maybe not. But as far as Dean was concerned, running away was a better idea than inviting the demon over for a play date. Because Sam’s visions were not a good thing for his little brother.

Over the past couple days, Dean had gotten to see those visions up close and personal, and he would be happy to never, ever see one again. They were a thousand times worse than Dad had described them. Dad had gotten the screaming and puking and bleeding right. But he’d neglected to mention the part where Sam fucking cried, which might have been the worst thing ever. Because Sam cried during his visions and Dean held him until it was over, while Dad pulled out his journal and took fucking notes.

The whole thing sucked, but nothing sucked as much as Dad and Sam acting like the visions were the break they’d been waiting for.

Dean had always believed he’d wanted to find the thing that killed Mom just as much as Dad did. But as it turned out, using Sammy to find it was not a price that Dean was willing to pay.

So Dad was out, getting the supplies that Bobby had told him were needed for the summoning spell. Dean refused to go along with him, saying that he wanted to stay back with Sam to make sure he didn’t burst something in his geeky oracle brain.

It had only been a couple hours since Dad had been gone, but Dean could hardly sit still. He’d checked all the guns, but Dad had already cleaned them thoroughly. He’d gone over Dad’s journal again, especially his entries from the past week, but there was nothing that stood out, nothing he didn’t already know.

Dean had done everything he could think of—except actually talk with Sam.

It had been four years since they’d shared a motel room, two years since they’d had a conversation. Dean had never stopped talking to Sam in his own head. There had been times along the way when the company of his imaginary little brother was the only thing that kept him from going crazy. But now, here in the same room, Dean felt unbelievably awkward, almost shy. Didn’t know what to say.

But Dean could feel Sam studying him from where he was lying on the bed. It had been several hours since the last vision, but Sam still looked wrung out.

“Okay, out with it,” Sam said at last.

Dean looked over. He’d been sharpening some old knives they hadn’t used in ages. Dean didn’t know why Dad even kept them, but he figured it didn’t hurt to be prepared. You never knew when a pawnshop pocketknife was going to be the thing that came between you and an ugly death.

“Out with what?” Dean asked, his voice more rough than he’d intended.

“You’re obviously mad at me. So c’mon, tell me how I screwed up.”

Dean set the knife down and rubbed his hand over his eyes. “Let’s not do this, Sam.”

“Then tell me what’s wrong with you. Other than the obvious stuff.” Frowning, Sam asked, “You okay? Are the stitches holding?”

“Dad’s stitches always hold,” Dean retorted.

“Then what’s wrong?”

Dean stared incredulously at his little brother. “Sammy, your brains are leaking out your nose, you and me are being held together by Dad’s dental floss, Dad’s inviting the demon over for a sleepover, and you’re asking me what’s wrong?”

Sam smiled. “Well, when you put it that way….”

“Damnit, Sam.”

Dean couldn’t believe it. Sam was still the irritating little brother he’d always been. It would be so easy to slip into old habits, to pretend that none of it had ever had happened. Like that night had never happened—the night where Sam had left for good and Dad had told him to stay gone. The worst night in Dean’s whole freakin’ life, and Dean had had a lot of bad nights.

Dean walked over and sat on the opposite bed. When Sam sat up and slung his legs over the edge, their knees were practically touching in the narrow space between the beds.

“Dean, please…” Sam said, and Dean could hear what he was asking.

Don’t shut me out…

It would be so easy to blow Sam off, to make some crack that would ease the awkwardness but would cement the wedge between them. So easy, so safe.

If you walk out that door, don’t you ever come back.

But Dean didn’t ever want Sam to go out that door again. He’d be damned if he was the one who ended up pushing him away, not this time.

Dean wasn’t sure if he’d ever been so nervous in his life, but he ducked his head and said, “Sammy, I don’t want that thing anywhere near you.” He glanced at Sam, who was gnawing at his lower lip.

“I’m scared too, dude.”

“Then why are you going along with this?”

“Since when do you question Dad?”

Dean frowned. “Don’t talk to me like that. I go against Dad all the time.”

Sam smiled unpleasantly. “It’s a brave new world…”

This wasn’t going the way Dean had planned it. “Shut the fuck up. You don’t get a say in this.”

Sam’s mouth fell open. “Of course, I get a say in this. It’s my life…I’m the one having visions.”

“You bailed. You left us—left me—to go be normal college boy. You don’t get to be the one to decide whether we go through with summoning the freakin’ demon.”

“That makes no sense,” Sam said, his forehead all furrowed, and Dean had to admit that Sam had a point.

“I just don’t know why you and Dad are in cahoots all of a sudden.” Dean sat back huffily, his stitched up gut complaining at the abrupt motion.

Sam stared before his face settled into that bitchy know-it-all expression he’d mastered as a teenager. “You’re jealous.”

Dean couldn’t believe this. “Jealous of what?”

“Jealous of me and Dad. You’re upset that we didn’t kill each other when you were gone.”

“Dude! Grow a pair, willya.” Dean sat back up and punched him hard on his good arm. “I swear, you and your emo crap are gonna kill me…”

But then the absurdity of the argument struck him, and he had to smile. Here he was, trying not to drive Sam away, and within a couple minutes of talking, they were ready to kick each other’s ass.

Sam had his fists clenched like he was going to punch Dean back. “What’s so funny?”

Dean was trying not to laugh, but it wasn’t easy. “You, me…Dad. We’re about to summon the evil sonofabitch we’ve been looking for our whole lives, and you and me are fighting about who gets to sit in the front seat.”

“Dad lets me ride shotgun now,” Sam said tauntingly, but he was smiling.

“Dude, grow up. I’ve got my own car now. Tell you what—you start riding with me, and I won’t even bug you to put your seatbelt on.”

“Like we ever used seatbelts,” Sam snorted. Then he leaned forward, all earnest again. “Hey, Dean…there’s something I want to tell you.”

“Oh God, no,” Dean moaned. “Kill me now.”

Sam shook his head, obviously not willing to be put off. “Hey, seriously, man. I’ve gotta say this. If I don’t now, I never will. The last time we talked on the phone, I said some stuff. I want you to know that I’m sorry. I didn’t mean it.”

Dean didn’t want to talk about this. It had been a couple years since he’d called Sam on the phone. He and Dad had hit a rough patch. Dad had been in a dark place, hitting the bottle when he wasn’t on a job, and the jobs hadn’t been coming in like they used to. Dean had been alone with it all, not knowing what to do, and Dad’s drinking kept getting worse and worse.

One weekend, Dad had gone off on a bender, and Dean had broken down and called Sam. It wasn’t like he’d asked Sam to leave school. He’d asked Sam to take a week off, come home, and help him dry Dad out.

Dean told Sam that he didn’t think he could do this alone. That he didn’t want to. Sam had said no. And Dean wasn’t sure he would ever forgive his little brother for that.

The conversation hadn’t ended there. Sam had accused Dean of being an enabler. Said that he and Dad were codependent…some psychological crap like that. Sam said that Dad was never going to get over his self-destructive quest, not with Dean willing to play sidekick.

Dean had been ready to hang up. But then Sam had said he’d met a girl, and her name was Jess. Sam said he thought Dean would like her. They had enough room in the place they were getting together. Maybe Dean could come stay with them for a while.

Dean told Sam to go to hell. Called Sam a selfish sonofabitch and said he was embarrassed for having raised him.

He’d had tears running down his face when the phone went dead. Sam had hung up on him, and Dean had figured that was that. He’d deal with Dad on his own and would leave Sam to the life he so obviously wanted.

And Dean had left Sam alone, right up until they’d gotten the call that Sam was in the hospital, possibly dying.

“Dean, are you even listening to me?” Sam’s hand came to rest on his knee. Sam was leaning into his space again, but Dean didn’t pull away.

He sighed. “Yeah, Sammy. I’m listening.”

Sam said, “When you called me, I knew the thing with Dad had to be bad. I knew you needed me, and I let you down. I have no excuse, man. I’d just hooked up with Jess, and I had finals coming up, and…I don’t know. I just couldn’t do it. Besides, Dad told me never to come back.”

“He didn’t mean it,” Dean said quietly.

“He sure sounded like he meant it.”

Dean remembered the aftermath of that fight. Dad had been destroyed for weeks after Sam left for Stanford but wouldn’t let Dean go after Sam. Said Sam would call if he changed his mind, but Dean wasn’t sure how Sam was supposed to call, when Dad had told him not to.

“It’s okay, Sammy. You and I both said some stuff.”

“It’s just that I’m sorry, Dean.”

Dean was sorry too, more sorry than he could put into words. So he leaned across and cuffed Sam hard on his good arm.

“Not a Lifetime movie, dude,” Dean said. “No weeping on my shoulder.”

Sam rolled his eyes. “Whatever. God, you’re such an asshole.”

“Right back at you,” Dean retorted and tried not to grin.

Apology accepted, yeah, whatever. They were good.

Except for the insane plan Dad and Sam had going to summon the demon. Dean had to stop this before it went further. He finally had his family back. There was no way he was going to risk losing it again.

“Sammy, this thing with the demon. It’s no good. I’m all torn up, you’re hurting. There’s no way we’re in shape to take that on.”

Sam nodded earnestly. “I know it’s a risk. But Bobby’s done a helluva lot of research, Dean, and the Devil’s Trap diagrams he showed us are the real deal. You lure a demon into one, and they can’t get out—they’re stuck. That combined with my visions and stuff—”

“You mean your superpower crap.”

Sam glared. “It’s not superpower crap. I don’t know what it is, but if we can use it for some good, that’s gotta be better than just letting this thing get away.”

Dean found himself getting angry all over again. “What the hell’s the matter with you? Every time you get a vision, it’s worse than the one before. You were practically brain dead after exorcising Meg. How do you know this won’t be the final straw? People aren’t meant to exorcise demons with their minds, Sam. You could have a stroke or an aneurysm or something. Hell, you just got over meningitis. The last thing you need is something screwing around with your freakin’ brain.”

Sam looked at him strangely. “How did you know about the meningitis?”

Oh crap. Dean got up from the bed and walked back to the table. “Dad told me.”


“Don’t change the subject, Sam.”

“Dean, you don’t understand.”

Dean started packing the knives back in the duffel. “Damn right, I don’t understand. I don’t understand what’s so freakin’ important that it can’t wait. You need to get back to school anyway…Dad says you’ve got some kinda big-shot interview you put off—”

“Dean, I can’t go back.”

Confused, Dean looked up. “Why?”

But Sam wouldn’t meet his eye. “It’s Jess…all my visions the past couple days…they’ve all been about her. If I go back, Dad says she could be in danger. This thing…this demon…I’ve gotta stop it, Dean. I can’t let it hurt her.”

Dean asked him seriously, “Should we go back to your place? Look after her?”

“No!” Sam stared at him, clearly horrified. “Dean, I don’t know if I can ever go back there again.”

Slowly, Dean was starting to get it—Sam’s sobbing when the vision ended, the way he cried out her name. “Okay, Sammy.”

“Don’t you see, Dean? Don’t you see why I have to summon this demon with Dad? I can’t let it hurt Jess.”

Dean swallowed, looked out the window across the parking lot. Wished like hell that Dad would get back.

“Yeah, I get it,” Dean said.

And he did get it. But that didn’t mean he liked it.


“Why can’t we all ride in the same car?” Sam asked huffily, when Dad ordered them to follow in the Impala. Dad scowled back, and Dean had to fight off a smile—it was good to see vintage-Sammy back in action again.

“Because I said so,” John snapped, heaving the ammo bag over his shoulder.

Sam actually had the balls to roll his eyes at that, and honestly, Dean felt better. Sam and Dad at each other’s throats restored order to the known universe.

“C’mon,” Dean said, getting between them before it got worse. “Let’s go waste this evil sonofabitch and then go for a beer.”

Dean headed out the door and for once, Dad and Sam followed him. Dean could seriously get used to this.

They left Palo Alto, taking back roads that followed the ridge of the Santa Cruz Mountains, and then followed a narrow, twisting road through the redwoods toward the small town of Felton. Dad knew of an old hunters’ cabin that had been built a few miles off the main road. No need for a key; nobody but a hunter would even find the place.

Sam had worried they shouldn’t do the summoning so far away from civilization, in case something went wrong. But Dad was adamant. Insisted that they do this alone—no need to involve civilians. Dean figured Dad was right on this one. There were too many things that could go wrong.

As he followed Dad’s taillights through the winding dark, Dean was glad they’d taken two cars. He could just see it—Dad and Sam bickering the whole way like two kids fighting in the backseat. It was better this way. Simpler. Just he and Sammy in the Impala, the way Dean always thought they would end up together.

Dean took a sharp right, pulling onto the dirt road behind Dad. The truck’s taillights were the only thing indicating it was even a road. Dean couldn’t see a thing through the dark woods on either side. There was a full moon overhead, but the canopy of trees was too thick for shadows.

He couldn’t help but sneak another look at his brother. Sam was staring out the window, his hands rhythmically rubbing back and forth on his jeans. At least the friggin’ nosebleed had finally stopped. Dean had been ready to go out and buy him some PMS iron supplements if it didn’t slow down.

Sam glanced over and saw him looking. “What’s wrong?” His voice practically cracked on the question…he was worried, all right.

“You doing okay, Sammy?”

“I’m fine.” Sam said, before smiling sheepishly. “Or not. I’m kinda freaked out, I guess.”

Dean reached over and scruffed up Sam’s hair, smiling when Sam swatted his hand away. “You need a haircut, dude. When we’re done with this job, I’ll cut it for you.”

“Jess was going to do it before my interview,” Sam said, rubbing his hands on his jeans again. “She said nobody would take me seriously with my hair in my eyes.”

Dean smiled a little and bit back his retort that nobody was going to take him seriously anyway. Honestly, he had no desire to talk about Sam’s other life, but Sam wouldn’t have brought it up unless he wanted to.

Clearing his throat, Dean asked, “So that interview’s kind of a big deal, huh?”

Sam glanced over, clearly surprised at the question. “Yeah, kind of. They were gonna offer me a full ride.”

“You really wanna be a lawyer?” Dean asked, trying to imagine what that would be like. “I mean, I guess it could be cool. Getting to talk in front of judges and juries, putting criminals behind bars and all that.”

Sam smiled. “You still watch too much TV, man. Not all lawyers are criminal lawyers.”

A little defensively, Dean retorted, “The cool ones are. Then what kind of lawyer do you want to be?”

“I’m thinking about being a tax attorney. Jess’s dad has a friend who is a partner at Willoughby and Wharton in the city, and there may be an opportunity for an internship that would be—”

But Dean wasn’t listening any more. “You want to be a tax lawyer?”

“What’s wrong with that? The federal tax code is like 50,000 pages long and is only getting longer. Somebody’s gotta help companies navigate through that.”

“A tax lawyer.” Dean wondered if saying the words again would make them any better. “Seriously, dude?”

“Shut the fuck up. I can be whatever I wanna be.”

Dean grinned at the instant memory of Sammy as a little kid being asked by well-meaning strangers what he wanted to be when he grew up. Dorky little Sammy’s answer was always the same. He would just stare at them bewildered and state, “I want to be myself.”

At the time, it had embarrassed Dad and had amused Dean, but now it just made him sad. Sam should get to be what he wanted to be.

Sam added quietly, “I don’t have to decide yet. They don’t expect you to know what you want to specialize in.”

“Sure, Sammy. Whatever floats your boat.”

“It’s a perfectly respectable job, Dean.”

“Maybe if your name’s Richard or Frank or something like that.”

“What the hell is that supposed to mean?”

Dean chuckled….some things never changed. Sam was so friggin’ easy. But his smile disappeared when he saw that Dad was pulling over. Dean eased onto the shoulder of the dirt road, and in the headlights, he could see the frame of a wind-slanted cabin in the woods.

“Looks like we’re here, Sam.”

Dean glanced over and saw that Sam had his arms crossed tightly against his chest. “I want to know what’s wrong with being a tax attorney,” he said stubbornly.

It’s safe, Dean reconsidered and thought that wasn’t such a bad thing after all.

Dean kept his headlights on as Dad trudged to the back of the truck and proceeded to load his duffel with a couple shotguns, knives, and extra ammo. Dean suddenly felt cold, and he shivered. Someone was walking over his grave…that’s what Pastor Jim always said when he got chills.

“What’s wrong with it?” Sam persisted. “I’m not getting out of the car until you tell me.”

There was nothing wrong with Sam wanting to be normal, if normal meant that he would have a long and happy life.

So Dean gently punched Sam on the arm, and with all his heart, he promised, “Nothing’s wrong with being a lawyer, Sammy. It’s awesome. You’re gonna be great at it and save those companies a shitload of money. I know it.”

Dean glanced away from his confused little brother and out the window. Dad was waiting there with the supplies in the dark. It took everything he had not to put the car in reverse and drive the hell the other way.

But Sam already had his door open and was getting out. Dean swore under his breath and followed.

Part 4
Master Post


( 12 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 30th, 2010 09:12 pm (UTC)
Sammy, your brains are leaking out your nose, you and me are being held together by Dad’s dental floss, Dad’s inviting the demon over for a sleepover, and you’re asking me what’s wrong?”

This should not make me laugh but it kinda did.

I can't wait for the next chapter.
Jun. 30th, 2010 11:29 pm (UTC)
Hee, I'm so glad you liked that section. I just loved the bit about dental floss on Changing Channels - I'm sure they were well stocked.

Am looking forward to knowing what you think about the ending. Thanks so much for reading!
Jul. 1st, 2010 12:16 am (UTC)
Ongoing goodness. Perfect Dean voice. Wow, you are three for three now :)

This: But for Dean, that explanation didn’t carry much weight. Dad should’ve been the one to have Sam’s back. A hunter was only as good as his partner.

But Dean hadn’t said that out loud.
--- Exactly Dean. Dad hadn't had Sam's back.

This: But apparently, Sam and Dad were in full agreement on the stupidest plan in Winchester family history, which was seriously saying something.
--- Such perfect snarkiness.

This: Sam actually had the balls to roll his eyes at that, and honestly, Dean felt better. Sam and Dad at each other’s throats restored order to the known universe.
--- Hee.
Jul. 1st, 2010 02:50 am (UTC)
Loved writing the three of them. But it's always gotta be Sam and Dean in the end. Just wish John could have stuck around for the ride a little longer. Thanks so much for your lovely feedback and for quoting lines you liked - very, very generous of you and it means a lot. :)
Jul. 2nd, 2010 09:08 pm (UTC)
I love Dean so much it's not even funny.
Jul. 8th, 2010 09:31 pm (UTC)
Me too. I had no idea his section would turn out to be half the story, lol.
Jul. 8th, 2010 09:59 pm (UTC)
Like I said before, I would love to single out lines I thought were funny or right on, but there's too much here to do that. That being said, there are a lot of funny ones, and one that was really good was:

At least the friggin’ nosebleed had finally stopped. Dean had been ready to go out and buy him some PMS iron supplements if it didn’t slow down. Ha!
Jul. 9th, 2010 12:57 am (UTC)
How interesting! I love that you just fast-forwarded through the first season, setting the trap for the demon with all the Winchesters.

How will this all play out? Off to read the conclusion!

Jul. 9th, 2010 03:16 am (UTC)
I made the choice early on not to mirror the cases in Season 1. I've seen that done very well, but wanted to condense the experience, and most importantly, have the Winchesters confront Azazel on their own terms. Thanks so much for commenting! :)
Sep. 29th, 2010 03:16 am (UTC)
Sam is still such a child sometimes. Sheesh.
Loved it.
Sep. 29th, 2010 03:23 am (UTC)
So glad you're still enjoying it!
Sep. 29th, 2010 04:06 am (UTC)
it is made of win and awesome-sauce.
( 12 comments — Leave a comment )