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Just Dean being sick and Sam being awesome...

"It's a Sneeze and It's a Broken Hallelujah..."

Dean shifted restlessly away from him, mouth clamped shut, face flushed and pale at the same time. The hectic color, made the freckles that danced across his chafed nose, stand out stark relief.

Sam thought to himself that the golden freckles made Dean appear younger, but he hated having them pointed out, so Sam kept quiet and just held out another bottle of cold medicine. It was the green night-time stuff and the last of their choices.

This bottle too was met with a grimace and then a wet sneeze was tacked on as if to punctuate his strong opinion. “HXXX-SHUGKKS!”

With a sympathetic wince, Sam offered another handful of tissues and a quiet, “Bless You.”

A gruff, “Thangs.” in return was followed up with massive amounts of gurgly nose blowing.

Sam set the medicine aside in defeat. He had tried every kind they had; the pills were all rejected because Dean's throat was too sore and the other three liquid kinds Sam had offered, Dean had deemed too disgusting for words. It was time to bring out the big guns. “Dean you've go to take something man, you're temps getting' up there, and the congestion sounds worse today, and you're really hard to understand with your stuffy nose talk.” He gave his brother his most earnest look. When Dean only crossed his arms stubbornly, Sam switched to his pitiful little brother pout, pulling out the biggest, most puppyish eyes in his repertoire. This look had never failed him yet.

Dean didn't disappoint. With a beleaguered sigh, he ungraciously acquiesced. “Find. Bud if I buke, you're cleanig it ub.”

After a few minutes of Dean's face turning an unflattering shade of green and an excessive amount of audible swallowing, he finally settled down and slept; albeit a very loud snorting sleep, but unconscious all the same. Sam took the opportunity to go out and restock a few things, including tissues, which Dean seemed to be going through at an alarming rate.

When he got back, he went straight to his brother's bed and plopped down beside him. Dean startled awake with a choking cough. Sam, apologizing for the rude awakening, rubbed Dean's back until the fit petered out and then helped him get his pillows re-situated. Dean gave him a weary, bleary-eyed look.

With a smile, Sam opened the bag on his lap and pulled out a plastic bottle filled with bright red liquid. He presented it with a triumphant flourish.

Dean was not impressed. He huffed. He sneezed, with head snapping force a few times, blew his nose gustily, and then muttered grumpily. “I already toog medicind. 'm nod takig ady more ride now.”

Sam's smile only grew wider. “Dean, this you're gonna like. I went to this little pharmacy at the edge of town that an older lady in the grocery store told me about...”

A wheezing chortle interrupted Sam's story, “Yeah, you sure are a cougar magned.”

Sam gave him a withering glare, but chose to overlook the comment in favor of sharing the good news he had for his grumbly brother. “Anyway, she told me about this place. They have all these flavors and they can add any of them to this generic kind of cold medicine. They can make it taste like almost any flavor you want. I couldn't believe it, they even had cherry pie flavor. See.” He waggled the bottle at his brother. Adding with a smirk, “Guess they have a lot of finicky kids in this town.” He pretended to study the bottle, “Hmmm... the label says for children 3-12 years of age. So, that fits you just right. 'Cause you sure act like you're about five when you're sick.”

Dean sniffed his stuffy nose in disdain and frowned at his brother's snark. Sam was so predictable, Dean thought, he always had to have the last word. But as his brother's word sunk into his sluggish, snot filled brain, he realized what his brother had done. This conclusion caused his red, watery eyes to light up with little kid excitement. The promise of any thing pie flavored always sounded good to Dean. Reaching out, he gave Sam a benevolent, but firm pat on the knee that was pressed snuggly against his side. “You're a good liddle brother Sabby, even if you are a smart aleg.”

Sam just grinned, replying teasingly, “Had a good teacher. He taught me how to be a good brother and how to be an even better smart aleck.”

Dean huffed again, rolling his eyes at Sam's cheekiness. Then let loose a horrendous blast of a sneeze. “AAAAHHH-KIIICHH!”

Ignoring his dramatics, Sam passed over more tissues, waited while he had trumpeted into them, and then offered the trash can to dispose of the mess. Afterwards, he leaned closer and gave Dean's pink cheek a gentle squeeze, “Don't be a baby Dean.” He chided softly. Then with a quiet murmur, he brushed damp hair off the hot forehead, didn't even care that it made Dean squirm. It was a brother's prerogative to be a pest after all, Dean had taught him that too.

~ The End

Written for this prompt- Dean’s suffered a relapse of ghost sickness. There’s no way he’s going to help Sam track down the town’s local monster because, dude, do you know how dangerous that is? Not without a helmet, anyway (and quite possibly knee and elbow protectors).

This was intended to be crack and ended up being... something else. Hope it is enjoyable anyway.

“A Helmet on the Head is Worth Two in the Bag”

Sam took the huge plastic bag gingerly as if it contained explosives. It was bulky, and heavy, and he was a little concerned with the contents. He glanced at his brother. His very pale brother who looked like he might faint or cry any second, but instead only flapped his hand encouragingly towards the bag. With a resigned sigh, Sam brought the bag near his face and peeked inside, only before he could even process what he was seeing it was ripped out of his hands and flung violently onto the floor. He jerked back in surprise and stared at his heaving brother. Dean was doubled over, hands braced on his knees, and panting as though he had just run a marathon.

“Dean?” Sam questioned as he very carefully approached his brother. “You okay?”
Breaths still wheezing quick and noisy, Dean straightened up slowly, his eyes were wide and he looked like he was half way to going into shock but he gave a sharp nod in answer.

Sam sighed. What was he thinking asking his brother if he was okay? Dean was always “okay”, especially if he wasn't. Taking him by the shoulders, he guided him over to the sofa, easing him down onto the too soft cushions. Then he knelt in front of him and asked quietly, “What was that about? I thought you wanted me to see what was in the bag.”

Swallowing audibly, Dean licked his lips before answering gruffly. “Plastic bags are dangerous Sammy”, He paused, breaths sawing, and gestured toward the discarded bag. “You could have...” he paused again to gasp in another breath before continuing, “... suffocated with that thing over your face. It... uh.... it worried me.” With that, he turned his head, refusing to meet Sam's concerned stare and worked to slow his breathing.

Taking a calming breath of his own, Sam gave Dean's knee a firm pat. “All right.” Standing, Sam stretched causing his back to twinge and pop. It had been a rough couple of days. Sam was tired and he knew Dean had to be exhausted. There was no way he wasn't with all the effort he was putting in trying to appear as normal as possible but Sam could see through his brother's act. He knew he his brother was suffering a terror that for anyone else would have proved debilitating. Dean though, if nothing else, was tenacious when it came to keeping his little brother from seeing any weaknesses he might have. Glancing back at the bag, he wandered over, looking to his brother in askance as he stopped beside it.

Dean nodded, taking a deep fortifying breath as though he were witnessing his little brother about to do something truly dangerous.

Picking up the lumpy bag, Sam decided to carefully dump out the contents instead of taking a chance on freaking out his on edge brother again. Two football helmets, one blue and one yellow, and an assortment of knee and elbow pads tumbled out onto the dingy carpet. Sam stared in shock at the array of safety implements, blinked, ran a hand through his hair, blinked again. Finally, he turned to Dean still seated on the couch. “Um... we planning on playing some kind of game later?” He asked in confusion.

“Wha? No.” Dean shook his head, pointed at the helmets, “Those are to keep us safe Sammy. You know how these ghosts always throw us around and one of us, more times than not, ends up with a concussion or something?” He stood, wobbling slightly, and walked over, reaching down for yellow helmet. Scooping it up, he held it out to Sam. “Should have thought of this a long time ago.”

Sam continued to stare at him silently, not making any move toward the offered helmet.

Dean waggled the brightly hued helmet in invitation. “Try it on Sammy. Wasn't sure they had one big enough for that gigantic melon of yours, but the guys said this was the largest one they had, so...” He trailed off, waiting for Sam to take the offering.

Sam's face twisted into a pained grimace. “Uh... no thanks Dean. I'll uh, just be uh... extra careful. Okay?”

“No! Sam this will keep you safe.” Dean urged, stepping closer and trying to push the helmet into his brother's resisting arms.

“Dean, no.” He pushed the helmet back. Took ahold of his brother's rigid shoulders and herded him back over to the couch again. Dean attempted to resist, but Sam used his size difference to his advantage and just kept up a steady pace, moving his brother along, until Dean gave in and quit struggling. “Listen, it's a good idea, a great idea.” He eased him back down again as he continued, “But we would be very conspicuous wearing football helmets. Look, we'll uh...” Staring at his dejected brother, sitting slumped on the sagging couch, cradling the helmet, Sam made a quick decision in compromise, “We'll wear those pads under our clothes, huh? That's not conspicuous, right? And that will keep us from getting... um... bruises and stuff.”

Dean looked up, a small hopeful smile turning up the corners of his mouth, “Really?”

Sam smiled back. “Sure.” He could do this little thing for his brother, until this stupid Ghost sickness went away. He prayed this was the last time they ever had to deal with it. But Sam was determined that he was going to take better care of his brother this time around. Last time, he basically told Dean to “suck it up” and then just left him alone. He had left him alone, unguarded, and scared out of his mind. This time however, that scenario was not going to be repeated. Sam could and would certainly do this one small thing for his big brother. If he needed Sam to wear elbow pads and knee pads in order to feel safe, then elbow and knee pads it would be. Helmets though, that was where he was drawing the line, for both their sakes.

Dean bit his lip and murmured, “The helmet would protect your head real good Sammy.”

Pursing his mouth as if in thought, Sam shook his head as he answered, “Sorry Dean, no helmets.”

“But...” Dean once again tried to interject.

Very firmly Sam spoke over him. “No helmets Dean.”

Dean gave up with a sigh.

Smiling again, Sam reminded him, “Knee and elbow pads. No bruises. Okay?”

Solemnly Dean agreed. “Okay.”

Giving Dean's shoulder a gentle pat, Sam said softly, “Dean, this was a good idea. You did good.”

Dean smiled softly in return, finally looking less nervous and Sam breathed easier because of it.

~The End

Tiny Hunter, AKA Dean Winchester

Disclaimer: The Winchesters, no-ot mine!
A/N: Written for a prompt over at hoodietime. Watch out for lurking typos. They are sneaky like ninjas. And I am having issues with my text size. Bluh!

"Tiny Hunter, AKA Dean Winchester”

Why was it always witches? Dean snarled at the evil female and her
zombified henchman facing him across the shadowy cabin's dusty floor.
They were going down. They had caused enough trouble in the nearby
town and Dean was going to make sure tonight was the end of that and
Gripping his knife tightly, Dean balanced on the balls of his feet, prepared to strike quickly. He gave the pair a confident smirk. “You ready to get this
party started Malefiscent?”

"Oh,hunter. You are delightful in your stupidity.” The shapely witch
smiled smarmily, “I will dance on your dead body very soon.”
Beautiful and horrible at the same time, she announced with gleeful
anticipation the violence she had planned.

Dean was unimpressed. rolling his eyes and grinning at her arrogance.
Witches, in his experience, were always bragging about what they
could do instead of just doing it. With the grace of long practiced
skills, Dean lunged at the Witch, slashing her thigh with his
consecrated iron blade.

Confounded, she attempted to staunch the bleeding wound with one hand while
screeching angrily and whirling to stare with loathing at the person
who had dared to come against her. She hadn't even finished
telling him all her glorious plans and they were glorious.
opened her mouth set to continue but saw the intense gleam in the
young man's eyes. He was not the easy mark that she was used to. She
would have to be crafty to win against this one. Very carefully, she
stepped to the side, reaching for her talisman, which enabled her to
concentrate more power. She had laid it aside while she was working
on her newest spell and then the hunter had interrupted her. Foolish
With a brilliant idea of how to defeat him, her hand
grasped the amulet and she smiled.

Circling her, Dean watched for another opening to try and finish her off. Most
witches could be killed like a normal human, but just to be safe Dean
had brought a little insurance. Never taking his eyes off of her, he
reached behind him for his colt. A consecrated bullet would be just
as effective as the blade and quicker too.

Before he could wrap his fingers around its comforting grip, the witch had
something clasped in her hands and let out an unearthly sound. The
sound grew in volume and morphed into something resembling words but
Dean couldn't make sense out of any of it. The garbled chant seemed
to fill the room, until there was only the howling screech. Feeling
like his head would explode, Dean gave up on the getting the gun,
dropped his knife and slapped his hands over his ears, working to
keep out the horrendous cacophony. The walls began to waver and
everything around him was becoming blurry and indistinct, as if the
sound waves were breaking it all down to nothing. Dean battled to
remain conscious as his vision began to gray out and buzzing static
filled his head to the brim. Then the pain became too much,
overwhelming him, bringing him to his knees and he could not believe
that he was going to get taken out by a witch. A stinking witch,
chanting some stupid spell way too loudly.

After what felt like an eternity, but was probably only a few minutes, the
sound faded and the world was suddenly shoved back into sharp focus.
The ensuing silence was so profound compared to the dizzying sound of
before, that it was almost just as painful to Dean as he tried to get
his sluggish brain to come back on line.

Taking a few moments to breathe, before tentatively removing his hands from
his ears Dean could feel warm liquid trickling out of both ears and
he hoped it was only blood and not his grey matter oozing out. When
he wiped the wetness off of his hands onto his jean clad legs, that
was his first clue that all was not as it should be. He looked down
at his legs, then held his hands up in front of his face. He could
feel his heart beginning to pound even more frantically than it was
already. Dean raised his head to stare up, a long way up, to see the
witch standing before him, only the perspective was all wrong. She
was standing there bleeding from the wound he had inflicted, yet
looking triumphant and excited.

Dean stumbled upright and promptly tripped on his jeans, which were now
around his ankles. Startled, he hopped and windmilled until he was
steady again, clawing and pulling at himself trying desperately to
figure out what had happened. Of his clothing, the only thing that
remained still on him, was a too big shirt that hung like a tent
nearly to his ankles. Boots, socks, jacket, jeans and even his
boxers, were lying in a jumbled heap beside him. Dean stood there
staring, he just couldn't process what was going on.

The witch had no such problem and cackled maniacally, pointing at him
with an evil sparkle in her onyx eyes. “You are just the right size
for my pet to handle now. A tiny little hunter, too small to win any
fight.” She shivered in delight before continuing, “You will die
now! Die! Die! Die!” She began to laugh as she repeated the word as
though she were making the world' best joke.

Dean, however really didn't appreciate the joke and so did not smile, only
glared harder.

Then the annoying laugh cut off abruptly as she turned her head sharply
and gave her “pet” a direct order. The voice weirdly gruff, as
she demanded, “Kill him!”

Dean took a fortifying breath, ignoring the crazy witch and her ranting.
He told himself to calm down and take care of the business at hand.
Then he could have have his freak out after these two were ganked.
First he needed a weapon, because little did not mean helpless and he
would not go down without a fight. Feeling around wildly Dean needed
something to use, against the hulking slave that was lumbering toward
him. Before he had garnered a defense though, he was picked up, as if
he were a feather and dangled in front of the growling specter.

Drool sprayed Dean's face as the thing muttered in a gravelly voice. “Kill.
Kill. Kill...”

Dude.” Dean grumbled disgustedly. “Say it, don't spray it. Ugh!”

The thing only rumbled a low growl in answer as it squeezed Dean's narrow
chest and prepared to carry out its orders.

With an angry, squeaky war cry, Dean brought two tiny fists up and pounded
the bulgy eyes of his large, but mostly brainless opponent.
Surprisingly, the thing let out a high pitched scream and carelessly
dropped Dean onto the hardwood floor. It was a long way down and
hurt, a lot. Dean lay there a moment stunned at the turn of events,
staring up at the beast as it wailed and clutched its head like a
fractious toddler throwing a fit. Wide eyed, Dean wasted precious
seconds as he watched the strange scene.

The witch, yelling furiously, “You fool! Kill him now!”, broke the
paralysis and Dean bounded up, searching frantically again amongst
the pile of his discarded clothes.

He came up with a victorious smile, this time grasping his blade and holy water. Quickly popping off the lid of the flask, he clutched the too big weapons in hands
too delicate and ran full tilt toward the distracted witch. Flinging
blessed water and stabbing her thigh with the sharply honed blade,
none was more surprised than Dean when the desperate effort worked.

The witch wheeled to face her attacker, but it was too late.
Screaming in pain and fury, she shook the amulet in her hands and
yelled hoarsely. Thick gray smoke began to pour off her and the thing
clutched in her fisted hands. Her face twisted in rage as she began
to shrink before Dean's eyes. The raving woman continued to melt and
collapse in on herself, until there was nothing left but a sizzling,
smoldering pile of rags.

Huh.” Dean stared nonplussed at the steaming, still crackling mess. Hecouldn't believe that she had been a cliché; a “Wizard of Oz” witch that could be killed with holy water. Dean remembered asking his dad about killing a witch with water after he and Sammy had seen that movie and his dad had laughed and told Dean that that was a stupid Hollywood myth. Water was not lethal to anything unless you drowned in it. Apparently, John Winchester could be wrong on occasion. Dean really wished his dad was around, so Dean could enjoy this moment. He knew Sammy and Bobby would like the story though. He would have to remember to share it with them.

Turning back he watched in mild amusement as the still wailing “pet”, thundered clumsily out the door into the dark forrest beyond the dimly lit, rickety porch.

With an almost hysterical giggle, Dean plopped down on his butt and tried
to sort out the events of the last few minutes. He knew that creature
needed to be destroyed, but with the size he seemed to be at the
moment, someone else was going to have to take care of it. Without
the witch, it would probably just wander around aimlessly or hide
somewhere anyway.

Once the giggles had tapered off, he took stock of the situation. The main
problem was that he was small, really small. Standing up, he walked
over to the vanity in the corner and got his first look at his
changed self. With a gasp, he stumbled back at the image. Then
steeling himself, he moved closer again and bravely took stock of the
changes. He was, maybe 3 and a half feet tall, fair haired, freckled,
and skinny. His eyes seemed too big for his face and the blonder hair
was longer, nearly touching his shoulders. His breathing sped up and
his chest started feeling tight.

Dean told himself firmly, that now was not the time to panic. He would get
back to the Impala and his phone and he would call Sammy. Everything
would be fine. It wasn't that far, to walk, even with his shortened
stature and he could wear his socks to protect his feet and... and...
Dean felt his eyes sting with looming tears. Emotions too big for
this miniaturized body threatened to overtake him.

He stomped in frustration and felt sharp pain spike through his bare
foot as it struck the hardwood floor. His lip trembled and the tears
threatened to overflow his welling eyes. He would not cry.
Just because he looked like a baby, didn't mean he had to act like
He ruthlessly reminded himself. Taking a shuddering breath, he fought to control his wildly swinging emotions and get on with his plan of getting help.

After a few minutes of pacing in a crooked circle and muttering dire
threats to his person circa John Winchester style, Dean finally had
himself sufficiently calmed down and ready to get on with his plan.
He shook his head in consternation, pondering why it never went well
when he and Sam split up. But Sam had been down with a cold for the
last few days and this hunt was supposed to be so simple, (a one man,
two day job). Bobby had agreed with Dean that it would be an easy
hunt and it would have been if the stupid witch hadn't gone all
“Honey I shrunk the kids” on him. Bobby and Sammy were going to
laugh their heads off when they saw him. Dean smirked as he set
about gathering up his pile of too big clothes and cache of weapons,
he might even laugh about this, but not right now.


The trek back to the Impala was long and arduous. Not only was it cold
and misting rain, but the moon was only a thin glow of sliver, so it
was inky dark too. By the time Dean had reached his baby, his feet
were stinging and bleeding from a multitude of cuts; socks did not
provide much protection against sharp rocks he discovered. Icy
rivulets of water were dripping from his soaked hair down his cheeks
and to run under his steadily dampening collar.

Dean leaned wearily against the big black car's door as bone rattling shivers racked his
body. His teeth were chattering so hard that his jaws ached, and his
little noodle arms were straining from carrying his useless
possessions. Part of him had longed to dump his clothes and boots and
heavy weapons beside the road because the load was way too heavy for
this little body. But he knew he would regret losing his gun and
boots and such, so he had trudged on. Now, that he had reached his
goal, he wanted nothing more than to lay down and just sleep, but he
couldn't do that yet. There were still things he had to do before he
could do any resting.


Dean contemplated his dilemma, while he sat in his baby, waiting on the
calvary to arrive. It had taken quite a few minutes to convince Bobby
that he was Dean, with his high, trembly voice and that was after
he had tried every which way to figure out a possibility of him
driving himself back to Bobby's. The Impala was just too big and he
was just too freaking tiny to pull it off. He had even tried sitting
on his knees and using his shotgun to push the gas pedal, but that
had ended in near catastrophe a few hundred feet down the gravel road
when the gun slipped and he almost ran his baby into a tree trying to
get the gun back in place, keep the car in the road, and hit the
brakes. There was also the chance of blowing a hole in his baby's
floor board if the gun had gone off and that right there was the
final straw that got the plan nixed.

After that near fiasco, Dean had put the car in park where she sat, shut
her off (because there wasn't a lot of fuel in her tank), slumped
back in the seat, and called for help. So now he was waiting, and
freezing, and trying to be patient, not one of his strong suits as an
adult or as a child he admitted. Sammy and Bobby would be there in a
few hours. Dean would be fine. He would just wrap up in his too big
jacket and he would get warm and he would be fine.

Only he couldn't get warm and he hurt everywhere. He was so weary that he
kept dozing off, only to jerk awake few minutes later. His teeth were
chattering again and he thought he might be coming down with Sam's
cold because raspy sneezes had begun to startle him every little bit.
Dean finally drifted into a miserable dream like state, half asleep
but not really resting: when the driver's door was jerked open and a
shaggy head appeared in the opening.

Dean squawked in fear, arms and legs flailing, tipping himself over into
the floor board. This caused him to cough and made his chest feel all
tight and wheezy. "Stupid cold germs." He muttered around the coughs.

Sam pushed into the car and hovered near the little bundle that was his
big brother. “Dean?” He asked uncertainly.

Dean pulled himself back onto the seat, huffing irritably. “Yeah, Sammy
it's me.”

Wow.” Sam's eyes were wide as he stared at the tiny adorable boy. Noticingthe dried blood smeared across his little face, worry spiked and he demanded loudly, “Dean!” His voice harsh, in the small space. “What happened? Why is there blood on your face?”

Dean frowned at his brother's concerned face, giving a pained sigh as he
mumbled, “'S nothin'. Just my ears bled a little cause the witch
was so loud and I fell and...” And suddenly Dean was feeling all
kinds of sorry for himself. He reached up a slender hand and rubbed
at his tingling nose, he could feel a sneeze coming. “Hxxgsh!”
The blast snapped his head forward and made his head ache. He didn't
even care that he had sprayed snot onto his baby, he was beyond
miserable and he really just wanted a hug or something so badly... he
didn't know why, but he was bone tired and hurting and cold and Sam
was here and Dean wanted....

Sam stared at his miniaturized brother, hunched over on the seat looking
bedraggled and tiny and so woebegone that Sam couldn't take another
second it. Carefully as though dealing with a skittish animal, Sam
reached for Dean, giving him a chance to say no. Dean just watched
the proceedings with huge, damp eyes, not moving a muscle.

One large hand gently cupped the delicate chin, the other covered the
tiny furrowed forehead. “You're burning up kiddo.” Sam whispered,
his own brow furrowing in concern.

Dean nodded, letting a sad little huff escape.

Moving his hands down to the bony shoulders, Sam nodded firmly. Then without
a by your leave, he pulled the slight figure into his arms, wrapping
the too big coat securely around him and carried him around to
Bobby's loudly running truck. He got in the passenger side, settled
Dean on his lap and cuddled him close all without saying a word.

Dean kept quiet too, except for the initial squeak of surprise he let out
when Sammy grabbed him. After that he didn't make a sound, because he
didn't want Sammy to turn loose of him. His little brother was so big
and warm and his giant arms were making him feel safe and.... Dean
felt like a giant girl but that was okay for now. He could pretend
like it never happened later. He heard the soft rumble of
conversation between Sam and Bobby discussing getting his baby home
and other details that Dean surprisingly wasn't concerned about at
the moment. Tuning out the noise of the conversation between the
other two hunters, Dean snuggled down into his little nest of warm
coat and warmer brother and let sleep take him where it wished. Sam
would take care of things, Dean could rest for awhile.

Sam held the too fragile child in his lap, all bundled up in the coat
like a a little cat. He could feel the small body shaking and
shivering against his chest. 

He looked up to meet Bobby's worried stare. “He okay there Sam? I mean besides the bein' shrunk part?”

"I don't know.” Sam studied the curled up figure in his lap. “I think he's sick on top of whatever curse that witch whammied him with. Maybe he caught my cold or something.”

Bobby nodded, reached up to scratch his head through his dingy cap, then
spoke in his fatherly voice, which was sure and steady and always
seemed to inspire confidence in the Winchester boys. “All right.
I'll get the Impala hooked up and then we'll stop at the first
pharmacy we pass and get some supplies to take care of your “little”
brother, until we get this mess figured out and put to rights.”

Sam sighed, relieved to have someone else making decisions. He still
wasn't back to a hundred percent from his recent bout of sickness and
he didn't feel up to being completely in charge. “Okay Bobby.

Bobby nodded again as he climbed out of the truck and then set about
getting Dean's baby hooked up to the tow truck and ready to travel.


Dean had become increasingly restless and hotter as they drove, Sam had
been forced to lay him on the bench seat between him and Bobby. He
hoped that might make him a little cooler like that, instead of
pressed against Sam's warmth. It didn't seem to be making much of a
difference and Sam was on the cusp of panic. Dean was so little and
vulnerable like this and Sam couldn't wait to get him back to his
normal strong self. In the mean time they were parked in front of a
small drugstore and Sam decided he would be the one to go in and get
what they needed. Giving the squirming lump under the coat a final
worried look, he headed into the store.


Sam was unnerved, standing there in the garishly lit aisle with piped in
muzak boring into his tired brain and seemingly hundreds of brightly
colored boxes of children’s cold medication lined up in front of
him. The whole scenario was almost more than he could take.

He reached out and picked up a purple box that claimed to cure,
sniffles, and cough, and congestion, and fever. The red box next to
it, cured the same things, except for the sniffles but it did include
a sore throat. The blue box below, when Sam picked it up to read the
label, only helped with fever and a runny nose. Setting the boxes
back on the shelf, Sam pinched the bridge of his own nose and closed
his eyes in frustration. His head was pounding and what he really
wanted to do was lay down in a nice soft bed, not stand in a stupid
pharmacy with lights way too bright for this time of night and have
worry consuming his every thought. What was the purpose of all these
choices anyway? Couldn't they just have one box for a child's cold?

He felt like an idiot and on top of that a terrible brother. It was
pathetic that he couldn't pick out which medicine to get. He knew he
should never have let Dean go off alone. Something always happened
when they split up. Dean would know exactly what kind of medicine to
get. Even Bobby would probably be able decipher which type would be
best. Sam glared at the shelves full of an over abundance of the
bright boxes. This was stupid. Everyone said he was smart, but he
was proving them all wrong tonight.

Pacing a few steps away from the display, he took a few deep breaths and
forced himself to look at the problem rationally. Dean was sick and
tiny and Sam needed to man-up and just pick something so they could
get him home and fix him. With that little pep talk Sam marched back
over to the colorful boxes and quickly, before he could change his
mind, scooped up a variety of the boxes. He theorized that too many
of them was better than not having the right kind. He then proceeded
to grab a jar of vapor rub, a couple of boxes of tissues, and a few
bottles of children’s sports drink at the end of the aisle. With a
smile of triumph he made his way to the check-out thinking about
Dean. Every once in awhile, Dean's way was the best way. Like a bull
in a china shop sometimes, but never let it be said that Dean didn't
get things done.

Sam continued to smile until he opened the truck door and saw that things
had gone downhill in the few minutes he had been gone. Dean was now
crammed in the footwell on the passenger side, crying and shaking and
Bobby was scooted back against the driver's side door, both hands
out, trying to coax Dean up on the seat.

Dean turned his pale, tear streaked face to Sam as the door opened and nearly fell out of the truck as he launched himself at his brother. Sam, luckily, had the
bag in one hand, so was able to catch the flying projectile and keep
them both upright and save the supplies from being dumped onto the

Dean had both skinny arms in a death grip around Sam's neck and both
spindly legs had snaked around either side of his ribs. The little
body was emitting way too much heat and vibrating like a live wire.
Sam set the bag on the floor board and hugged the distraught brother.
He met the older hunter's confused gaze over the blond head buried in
the groove where his neck met his shoulder.

Bobby just shook his head and then re-situated himself more comfortably
back in his seat.

Sam patted the little trembling back and crooned softly in Dean's ear.
“Hey kiddo, what's the matter? Huh?” The only answer he got was
the grip tightening.

Can't breathe buddy with you choking me. Can you let up a little?”

The arms and legs loosened their fierce grip, but the face stayed buried.
Cradling the clinging monkey to his chest, Sam awkwardly climbed back
into the truck and pulled the door shut. He carded fingers through
the soft hair and just held him until finally Dean eased away from
Sam and stared up at him, appearing dazed and confused.

You okay Dean?” Sam murmured.

Teeth chattering, Dean blinked and then he sneezed twice, one little hand,
moving a tad too slow in an attempt to stifle the blasts. Before Sam
could dig out a tissue, the same little hand had wiped at shining
nose and then smeared that dampness onto his own shirt.

With a disgusted grimace, Sam quietly reprimanded his brother, “Don't do
that Dean. I have tissues.”

Dean just blinked again and remained silent.

Sam was starting to worry at his brother's strange behavior. “Dean.
What's going on? Why were you crying?”

Finally the smallest hunter spoke, his voice scratchy and barely audible, “I
don't know Sammy....” He paused shrugging narrow shoulders, “I
just got scared all of a sudden and....” He paused again, rubbing
his throat and squinting glassy-eyed up at Sam. “And I don't feel
so good. Can we go home now?”

Sam frowned in concern at the pitiful little guy on his lap. “You mean
go to Bobby's house?”

Dean frowned, bringing a tiny fist up to press against his forehead.

Dean is that where you want to go?” Sam repeated.

"Yeah. I... uh... I meant Bobby's. Sorry Sammy. I'm just tired I guess.”With that sheepish pronouncement, Dean, more or less, collapsedagainst his little brother's wide, warm chest and was snoring congestedly within seconds.

Sam pulled the discarded coat off the floor and covered his ailing
sibling, tucking it around the tiny feet and shoulders.

What should we do Bobby?” Sam asked quietly, rubbing the little backsoothingly. “He's acting... weird.”

Bobby put the truck in gear and slowly pulled out onto the dark road,
before answering. “Well Sam I think you should wake him up and give
him a dose of whatever medicine you got in that bag, then let him
sleep until we get back home and can sort this mess out. It's
probably just the fever messin' with his head. You know how he gets
when he's sick and runs a temp.”

Sam huffed. “Yeah, he does get a little crazy when it gets too high.
Okay.” Nodding in agreement with the logic, he put his worry aside
for the moment. “Medicine, sleep, and back to your place. Sounds
like a plan.”

Bobby grunted. “Hmmm. And you take something for that headache that's
kickin' your butt. Don't need you having a relapse. One Winchester
down at a time is plenty.”

Sam gave their friend a small smile and a sharp nod in reply.

And then you can cuddle up with your big, little brother like a teddy bear and both of you can sleep.” Bobby added gruffly.

With a goofy grin, Sam set about doing as he had been asked and left the
“wheel” in Bobby's hands. Dean grumbled sleepily, but took the
medicine (first box Sam pulled out) without too much fuss, then he
let Sam tuck him against his shoulder, drifting quickly back to
dreamland. Sam glanced at the older hunter, one hand on the wheel the
other tapping against door, he was probably already working out how
to fix this.

It was nice having someone else in charge sometimes. But
he wouldn't be sharing that little tidbit with Dean. Older brothers
usually had too much ammo against little brothers anyway, and Dean
seemed to have more than most, he certainly did not need any help in
that area. So, Sam would cuddle this tiny version of his big brother
and tease him about it later. That was every little brother's job, to
poke fun at big brothers whenever possible. Sam had been on the look
out for some new material to use against his big brother and this
would be a gold mine. On the plus side, Dean was pretty cute
and cuddly like this, so Sam wouldn't mind taking care of little Dean
at all. He would trust Bobby to get them sorted out, just like
always, because apparently that was Bobby's job, to keep the
Winchester brothers sorted out. Sam was thankful that Bobby was so
good at it. With that thought at the forefront, Sam let out a contented sighing, as he settled Dean more comfortably in his arms and closed his eyes for awhile.

~The End. Hope you enjoyed it.

Sea Fever

Title: Sea Fever
Author: dreamlitnight
Genre/pairing: Supernatural, hurt/comfort
Characters: Dean W. and Sam W.
Rating: G
Word-count: approx. 2,700
Summary: Dean has a fever and wanders off while Sam isn't looking.
Spoilers: None
Warnings: Contains crack, angst, illness and Winchester brother schmoopiness.
Disclaimer: The Winchesters are not mine. Also, the title belongs to poem by John Masefield.
Written for a Prompt: Dean is doped up on all kinds of cold medicine (and/or possibly some booze) and his fever's frying his brain and he can't remember where he parked the car. Or Sam, for that matter. He's loitering somewhere, like a gas station or strip mall off a busy highway or whatever, all purple-eyed and pale and shivering and wearing Sam's too-big, ratty hoodie. Basically he looks like some strung-out hoodlum, so no one wants to help him figure out what the hell he's doing here 'cause they're busy herding their children away from the riff-raff. Eventually a store-owner or someone calls the cops on him. How did he get there and what happens next? Any genre/pairing.
Sea Fever

I must go down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,

And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by...
~John Masefield

"Sea Fever"

Dean was shivering, shivering so hard he could barely walk, but he needed to find... find... what was it?

Bringing a trembling hand up to rub at his aching, muddled head, he tried to get his tangled  thoughts to un... tangle...
There was something important that Dean needed to find... someone... very important... Sam! Dean needed Sam. He Paused in his meandering and looked at his surroundings. There were people walking quickly, coming and going on each side of him, but they all seemed to be giving him a wide berth. Dean was an island and the sea of people were flowing around him. 

Dean opened his eyes wider, trying to take in where he was... it was not familiar... it was not... Where was Sammy? Dean needed to find him... needed him right now. He felt panic bubbling in his chest and his breaths started to stutter. He turned in a staggering, lopsided circle, frantically searching for his giant, shaggy haired brother. The turning made him dizzy, lights from the nearby stores blurring and smearing. A rainbow of muddy colors... rainbows and mud... God sent a rainbow to promise no more mud... no... no more storms or floods, or ... well, God wasn't keeping his promise, 'cause it felt very stormy... and … Dean was lost at sea on a ship or an island... lost...

Dean lost his footing, rolling waves were difficult to navigate... It startled him when he bumped into a solid form and was pushed back with an accompanying angry yell. The harsh shove, knocked the wind out of him, as Dean tried to get his voice to work, to say 'sorry', and before he could catch his breath or his  balance , his shoulder rammed into something else, a more fragile barrier and this time a high pitched voice was screaming at him to stay back... and someone was crying and rough hands were  shoving and grappling with his unbalanced self and.... the sea was too stormy and rough and... 

Dean's ship or... his island... he's not sure exactly everything is mixed-up, but Dean is being bombarded by a storm, an angry, loud storm. 'Cause see... the rainbow was not doing its job... or someone wasn't doing... He loses track of up and down and... maybe there was wind screaming and battering him... or just screaming and... then something hard connected with his rattling head and then the stars... came out... and shone... and sparkled very brightly...

Dean could breath again and he realized the sea had calmed down a little... was quieter... he had somehow found a place to moor, a safe place to wait out the storm...

“Hxxshugff!” a wet sneeze interrupted Dean's contemplative musings, he rubbed at his face, his tingling nose and scratchy eyes. Then, pulling irratibly at his damp jacket, he tried to garner a little warmth. It felt wrong. He stared down at the jacket... Dean frowned in confusion, this was not his ... he did not wear this... this jacket was faded brown and soft and... it belonged... it belonged to... to his brother! His brother... 
Sam... where... Where was Sam? 

Dean looked up from his contemplation of his outerwear... Where was Sam?  Where was Dean! Dean tried to take stock of the situation... he was leaning against something hard, it was rough and cold. Icy rain was dripping on his hair and onto his face. He was having a terrible time trying to stay standing. Needed to get his sea legs.

Dean chuckled. “Sea legs”, was funny, “Sea creatures didn't have legs though...

The chuckle morphed into a cough and Dean felt like his ribs were cracking and he wished the wind was still blowing because he needed some of it, his was gone.

His throat felt like it was raw and no air was getting in or out and... he was choking and... that.... was.... the … end....
The ship was going down, or the island was sinking.... either way, Captain Dean or Captain Winchester was going down too.

Dean didn't want to but... the captain always went down with his ship...  he wasn't sure if a captain went down with islands and he really didn't want to sleep with the fishes because he would miss... he would miss... Sam... yeah, he really wished Sam was here... he could help keep him afloat and that's why he had to be Captain Dean...  a ship couldn't have two captains with the same name...and... Sam could help keep the fishes away.... Dean  frowned... 'no', thought to himself that that would not be good because if Sam was a captain too, Dean did not want Sammy to go down with the ship, or... 

Dean blinked owlishly, something was wrong.... Why was he in the water…. on a ship? And..something broke loose and he was able to get a breath and then another and then...  “Owww!” His throat.... was killing him and his breath was wheezing now like a ship whistle and the coughing still didn't want to stop... and he was burning up and freezing at the same time and getting enough air was  a problem... and... he felt seasick?.... seasick.... 

Suddenly hot bile was rushing up the back of his stinging throat. He tipped over and gagged on the foulness of it. His stomach jerked and cramped as he emptied the meager contents into the heaving sea.

When the roaring quieted, he could hear voices... gentle sounding voices... speaking, but he couldn't sort anything out and they weren't making any sense... just rumbling like thunder on the stormy seas...

Dean raised watering eyes and saw two figures knelt down in front of him... They must belong to the voices he reasoned... They were solid and stable, like they were anchored, and they held steady in the gale. Dean wished he was holding steady instead of rocking to and fro...

He tried to focus his blurry vision on the two of them... Dark blue, wide brimmed hats wavered on their heads and they wore heavy matching coats and Dean decided they were pirates. One of them had a beard, neither had earrings... they looked like pirates... nice pirates... but he didn't have any treasure for them... he didn't have anything but his brother and his baby... where was his brother and his car?... where...

The Storm shook him or maybe it was the pirates shaking him, then the voices grew louder, all grumbly and garbled. They kept messing up his thinking, he couldn't concentrate with them pestering him... Dean squinted up at them, tried to give them the stink eye. Couldn't they see he was busy?

And why weren't they offering him any rum? That would be the hospitable thing to do. He would, if he had some. “MMM... rum.” That would warm him up and get the awful taste out of his mouth...

The pirates poked him this time. These pirates were persistent buggers. They seemed to want him to do something, but he just rode the rocking sea and watched them and tried to gather up his scattered thoughts as he slid up one side of the wave and then down the other... 

Then the pirates were holding onto him... and they towed him along with them and he was feeling sick again and he really hoped they would tow him somewhere warm, with less bobbing... Dean swallowed convulsively and tried to ignore the rolling in his gut that was competing with the stormy seas.

He was just so worn out.... he let them tug him across the rough crests, maybe they would tow him to Sammy... Sam! Yeah, he was looking for Sam... He pulled against the pirates, against the current. He wanted to ask them if they knew where his brother was, but the waves were buffeting him and he was choking and he got lost in the storm... once more....

Bright sun and warmth were what Dean became aware of next. The storm was over, the sea was calm... he heard a sweet sound, he heard what he had been searching for... Dean heard his brother's voice and he needed to get closer. He tried to push himself up, but couldn't seem to get enough leverage and everything hurt. A pitiful groan escaped as he continued to fight the soft bed and his weak body. 

Sam heard his brother moving around and one more time thanked the kind hearted policeman and woman that had come to his brother's rescue, before excusing himself and going back into the room to check on said brother. Sam still couldn't believe that a very ill and totally loopy-on-cold-medication Dean, had gotten away from him. Sam had left him alone, for maybe, five minutes while he refilled their ice bucket from the ice machine a few doors down. Apparently that's all it took for his escape-artist, fever ridden brother to have gotten out of their room and walk three blocks to the small outdoor mall. Sam thought he might have a panic attack when he saw the empty room and the door standing wide open. But he had lucked out when he ended up at the right place, half an hour later, just as they were loading his delirious brother into an ambulance. It seemed Dean had been “disturbing the peace”   the locals and someone had called 911. 

Sam was just thankful his brother had been dressed properly and not sporting only his boxer shorts he had started the day wearing. Dean even had his boots on, because around noon he had been determined to get dressed in his clothes, and boots, and even one of Sam's own stretched out hoodies. His reason; “The ship”, he informed Sam, “was cold and a captain did not walk around without his boots on”. That's what Sam got for watching a marathon about  pirates, privateers and shipbuilding on the history channel all day while his big brother was feverish. Anyway, Sam found it was easier to give in when his brother was sick and confused than to argue with the stubborn idiot. It was a good thing he had given in to his ramblings too, since it was only about forty degrees outside and misting rain.

Stepping into the brightly lit room, he found Dean moving around restlessly, attempting to get up. He had already knocked off his oxygen mask and Sam feared the IV would be the next casualty if he didn't get him calmed down. Lengthening his stride, he hurried to the bed and firmly grasped his brother's flailing arms. 

“Hey Dean. Calm down. You're fine. I've gotcha bro.” Sam continued to soothe his distraught brother until he had given in and relaxed, then Sam released him, replacing the much needed oxygen mask. His brother had a good case of bronchitis and strep throat going. He also had a slight concussion because the “disturbed” citizens had apparently knocked Dean down or into something hard.

The police force might be nice in this town but the townspeople were another story. Dean had a purple lump near his temple that went nicely with his purple shadowed eyes and a few other bruises on his arms and ribs. The knock to his head, of course was contributing to his slightly confused state. The doctor had reassured Sam this would fade by tomorrow and Dean would be much better. Sam studied his pale features while he kept up the encouraging litany. Getting his sibling all settled again, he pushed the call button for a nurse. 

Dean had remained pretty quiet except for a few muffled sneezes and intermittent coughing. His glassy green eyes though, were staring intently at Sam's every move. 

Sam grabbed a tissue and pulled the mask back to dab at the shiny red nose, satisfied he slipped  the mask back in place. Noticing his brother's fierce stare, he paused in his ministrations and leaned closer, meeting Dean's gaze. One large hand  latched onto Dean's shoulder and he rubbed his thumb gently back and forth on the knobby bone, asking, “Hey. You in there brother? You okay?”

Dean leaned into his brother's touch and sighed roughly as the coughs tapered off. The tip of a pink tongue peeked out between cracked lips, attempting to relieve the chapped dryness. Dean then reached up to get rid of the thing on his face, but was forestalled by his observant and bratty brother. 

Catching the errant hand, Sam tucked it back under the blanket and gave it a consoling pat. “I'll ask the nurse, when she comes in, if you can have some water or ice chips. Okay? Bet you'd like that huh? Some water to drink?” The younger brother murmured softly.

With a frown, Dean muttered that he had had enough water. “Tired of the sea and being seasick, Sammy. 'S nice bein' on dry land.”, he paused and gave Sam a flinty eyed-glare, “You talk with the pirates and get me some rum, no water.”

With that huffy demand, Dean closed his aching eyes, hacked a few more times, and then left Captain Sammy in charge for awhile. The storm had passed, so there would be no captains going down with any ships today. That meant Sam would be safe and Dean would let him handle the parley with the pirates and whatever. Captaining a ship or was it an island?... was hard work...  Dean decided he really needed a nap... and some rum...

~The End. Thanks for reading and reviewing, if you care to.

Title: Take Care What You Ask of Me, 'Cause I Can't Say No.
Author: dreamlitnight
Genre/pairing: Supernatural, hurt/comfort
Characters: Dean W. and Sam W.
Rating: G
Word-count: approx. 2,500
Summary: Sam wants a vacation. Dean wants to give this to him, but it might not be possible.
Spoilers: Maybe slight reference to Season 4 and onward... very slight, but be careful.
Warnings: Contains talk of PTSD and hurting brothers.
Disclaimer: The Winchesters are not mine. Also, the title belongs to song by Evanescence.
Written for a Prompt: Sam and Dean have been on high-alert and in a high-stress position for years now. When the war is over, Sam insists they take a vacation/consider stopping hunting altogether. They’re both having issues, but while for Sam the quiet-time is used for reflecting/rediscovering himself, for Dean with his life-long avoidance issues, not being in the high-alert state is initially nothing less than terrifying. When he suddenly has free time to kill, he crashes, gets sick and can’t shake it. (I’m thinking like a cold/flu that turns into pneumonia or something, but whatever you want would work.)
Lots of feverish!Dean, of course, angst, and I’d love me some PTSD!Dean or mental-illness!Dean too. pg. 2
A/N: So, this is not quite what was asked for, but I hope the prompter enjoys it anyway.

“So Take Care What You Ask of Me,
'Cause I Can't Say No.”

People were screaming. There was heat and light so bright that he couldn't see... and something was holding him so tight that he couldn't breathe... and where was his weapon? Where was Sam? He couldn't get away! He needed to to get away! The more he struggled, the more tightly he was restrained. He tried to yell for his brother, for Sammy. He couldn't get enough air. He was choking and his breath was wheezing in and out like a spluttering engine... and he couldn't breathe! “Sammy!” he tried to scream, his voice sounded thin and brittle and he... couldn't breathe... and the light was too bright... and he couldn't...

Dean felt his whole body shaking and twitching from the spike of adrenaline. He tried to slow his hitched breaths, tried to calm the still violent urge to fight, and get away, and help Sam, even though Sam was right there and... Sam... Sam was right there...

Dean blinked woozily as sound and reason returned. The scene faded, the fear receded. The screaming morphed into the loud droning of bees and the brightness and the heat was hot August sunshine and Dean was back in the small yard of the house they had been staying in for the past few weeks. He was back and he could feel Sam's arms hugging him tightly and securely and murmuring soothing sounds over and over in his ear, hot breath tickling... and it was good... and it needed to stop. Because Sam was okay and Dean was okay now.

After the flashback had eased off, Sam had sat Dean down on a ratty blanket half in the shade of the tall oak tree and half exposed to the bright sun. He was given a cold drink, some pain relievers, along with strict orders to rest. Dean watched, attempting to be stealthy, as his brother within minutes, seemingly care-free, flopped down and then sprawled out, almost boneless on the part of the blanket exposed to the sun. He lay quietly soaking up the warm sunshine. The book he had been thumbing through before Dean's little show, was now laid across his t-shirt clad chest, as if Sam wanted it handy, but instead of reading it, he looked as if he had fallen asleep the minute his head touched the worn quilt. The faint snores escaping his brother's slack mouth every now and then, proved Dean's theory to be correct.

Dean sighed and tried to follow his little brother's example. He tried to relax his tense muscles but they refused to settle, continuing to tremble and jerk spastically as his body tried to reboot itself. The war was over. They were safe. It didn't seem to matter how many times Dean repeated this mantra, it just wasn't sticking. Nothing felt safe or settled. It felt like they were on the edge of a deep chasm and could go tumbling over at any moment if Dean let his guard down. He knew that this wasn't reality. The world was relatively safe for now, at least from angels and demons and there was nothing for the Winchesters to do but rest and regroup. Sam kept reminding Dean that his only job was to rest, but it wasn't working out so well for him. While Sam was looking healthier and more like his old self with each passing day, enjoying the peace of the small town they were holed up in. Dean grew paler and he had even lost a little more weight. Just this morning he had had to put another hole in his belt in order to keep his jeans from falling down.

It seemed so simple, what his little brother was more or less ordering him to do. But after living his entire life as a soldier who was on call twenty four hours a day, seven days a week, it was a tough habit to break. His skin felt itchy, and his hands insisted on trembling and twitching, and his nerves felt strained, and stretched ready to break any minute. To Dean, these days of inactivity felt worse than being constantly on the run and wary for the past thirty some odd years. It was like, now that he had time to think and actually ponder what he might like to do with his life, all the junk he had stuffed down deep and neglected to deal with was coming out to torment him.

Today it was the buzzing bees that had sent him into a blind panic, a few days ago it had been a car backfiring while they were on their way back from getting groceries, sometimes just a whiff of smoke could cause him to get lost in his nightmarish memories. Everything made him skittish and nervous. Every little noise seemed to shout “Danger! Run away!” and Dean wasn't sure how much longer he could endure this “vacation” even for Sammy's sake.
When Sam opened his eyes again, the sun had set and there were fireflies blinking above him in the darkening sky. He sat up quickly, knocking his book off his chest as he searched for his brother. He was relieved to find him where he had left him, now slumped against the trunk of the tree, either sleeping or passed out. Shifting closer, Sam spoke softly, grasping Dean's bicep. “Hey. You ready to wake up?”.

Dean came awake with a jerk, before recognizing his brother and taking a few deep breaths that turned into barking coughs.
Reaching out, Sam patted Dean's back until the coughing eased. He frowned, when he felt how bony his brother felt. Studying his brother's pale face, it seemed he was more on edge than ever and the cough sounded kind of bad. “You okay Dean?”

Dean huffed, pushing at Sam's comforting hand and wiggling around until he could get up. “I'm fine Sam, just choked on a bug or something.”

Sam let it go, watching as Dean headed back toward the house shoulders hunched, walking slowly as if her were hurting. With a disheartened sigh Sam picked up his book, gathered up the blanket, and followed his brother.

The next few days were spent more or less peacefully. There was still cleaning to be done and Sam had bought paint for the two bedrooms and the kitchen. The house Bobby had found them, sat well off the road and had no close neighbors. It was about 30 minutes from town, by foot and that worked out nicely in Sam's opinion. He had convinced Dean to take this vacation with him, but his goal was to make this permanent, to settle in this little town and finally have a home. The Winchester brother's home sweet home, just the sound of that made Sam happy. So all he had to do was convince Dean that this was a good idea, or con him or guilt him into it, whatever worked. Sam was willing to do just about anything to get his way on this. He wanted this, but more than that, Dean needed it. He needed a place to heal and forget about the sheer awfulness of the last few years.

The house was on the large side and was a fixer upper, which was a good thing since it helped to keep Dean busy. A busy Dean was a happier Dean. Right now though, his daily coughing spells and the recurring fever he thought he was hiding from Sam was not going to be allowed to continue to be ignored. In fact, Sam had just poured a glass of orange juice for Dean and had two cold medicine caplets already popped out of the package when Dean came in, after having rinsed the last paint roller.

Wordlessly Sam held the offerings out to his very peaked looking brother, who frowned at them. Then he took the juice and bypassed the pills. Sam refused to be deterred and followed him as he attempted to go back outside.

“No, Dean. You need to take something for that cough and fever, you think you've been hiding, before it turns into something worse.” Sam put firmness in his voice, because whether he liked it or not, his brother responded better to orders than he did the coddling that Sam would rather give him. So, he had to go with what worked.

Dean stopped and turned back to face his brother. Mouth tightened in frustration at being called on his subterfuge, he reached out and snatched the pills, still refusing to speak. Swallowing them quickly, he downed the juice. Then he set the glass carefully on the counter, and turned on his heel, and went back outside.

Sam watched out the window as his brother paced around their back yard. Dean didn't seem to have any task in mind as he wandered back and forth from the lone tree to the scrubby bushes on the other side. Sam had been hoping to get him to take a nap, since he knew he was coughing at night and probably not getting enough sleep. Winchesters had rarely gotten enough sleep, he admitted with a sad smile, but that would be changing. Sam watched Dean a few more minutes, before finally deciding his brother was safe enough by himself and went to finish another of the endless jobs he had put on the list that needed to be done. He would check on Dean in a while, maybe give him time to get over his snit. Sam chuckled at that, Dean wouldn't appreciate Sam accusing him of having girly snits.
Dean wandered back into the house after a couple of hours of grumpy pouting, or at least that's what he knew Sam would label what he had been doing. Dean just called it, hiding from Sammy. When he walked into the kitchen, the first thing he smelled was fresh paint, then he caught a whiff of something burning and suddenly he was lost in a melee of pain and fire and total confusion.

He came to himself lying on the floor with Sam looming over him, face scrunched up in his worried, little brother look and big hands patting and pawing at him. Dean rolled away from the touches. It was too much, overloading his already frayed nerves. He worked to steady his constricted breathing and ended up, choking and coughing until vomit spewed out on the floor and then he coughed some more, spitting and hacking. There were tears streaming down his face and he wasn't sure if they were from the fit he just had or because his heart was hurting like it had been torn bloody, from his aching chest.

His arms wouldn't stop shaking and it felt like he was going to collapse, right into the awful mess. Sam though, must have sensed the impending disaster and wrapped strong arms around him and pulled him back against his broad chest, all the while murmuring soothing words, but Dean couldn't make them out over the roaring in his ears. After a few more minutes of Sam holding him, the roaring ceased and he could hear Sam's voice murmuring firmly, repeating over and over that they were going to be okay. The panic faded as his brother's encouraging litany washed it all away. More time must have passed without Dean noticing, because his eyes were closed and his brother had gone quiet. Dean decided he had been held long enough and tried to squirm his way out of Sam's octopus arms. Sam however was having none of it and continued to hold his weakly struggling brother.

Ignoring Dean's mumbled complaints, Sam spoke softly, as if he had to be careful and not startle him, he asked Dean if he was ready to get up and Dean tried to answer, but talking apparently was beyond him so, he nodded instead. Once on his feet, Sam guided his wobbling steps out of the kitchen, down the hallway to his bedroom. He didn't even bother to argue when his brother pushed him down on the bed. He gave in with a gusty sigh when his back met the soft mattress. Sam was suddenly there, with more pills, and water, and a cool cloth laid across his burning forehead. After getting Dean settled, with the blanket tucked just so, Sam squeezed his shoulder reassuringly, then sat down on the bed next to him and just stays there quietly. Dean thought that he would just lay there for a few minutes and then he would get up and do... whatever... but his body had other ideas and when he opened his eyes again the room was dark, except for the glow of the hall light and Sammy was snoring softly beside him.

Dean could feel his body burning with fever and his eyes felt dry and scratchy. The cloth must have slipped off, he didn't try to find it. He stayed still, not wanting to wake his brother, or deal with anything at the moment. Dean couldn't bear to see the pity, or worry, or maybe disappointment in his little brother's eyes. He wanted nothing more than to give Sam his “normal”, a life that was far away from the one they had lived, but he wasn't sure it was possible. He just wasn't sure he could be okay enough to pretend everything was okay, even for Sammy's sake. He wanted to. Oh, how Dean wanted to do that for Sammy. He sighed wearily, his body and mind were so utterly tired that he ached with the exhaustion of trying to be normal for his little brother. Carefully, very carefully he turned over, buried his face against Sammy's hip and forced himself to let go and slip back into restless sleep.

~The End. Thanks for reading and commenting, if you're so inclined.

Link by Link, the Chain is Forged to Hold

Disclaimer: The Winchesters are no-ot mine.

A/N: This little piece is purely self indulgent on my part. I hope those who read it, enjoy it. This is my take on the Winchester saga.

Link by Link, the Chain is Forged to Hold.

Two brothers set out
purpose before them, reason behind them
shiny and new
brightly gilded beauty showing for all to

The world basks in their prettiness
relishes the strong love of their hearts
wallows in their honor and loyalty
is enraptured by their earnest desire to

Time moves along
swiftly, swirling and pulling,
muddling things up
brings confusion, brings hurt
hurt brings heartbreak
heartbreak builds

The world greedily pulls at their prettiness
batters and bruises the love in their hearts,
causes them to shore up their defenses
to hide away from the neediness of

First one brother is

And then the other

Aching and lonesome
haunted by memories
mired in remorse and "what could have beens"
filled with burning guilt, so

Two brothers set out
ideals in hand, revenge in mind to

They grappled with one another
they wrangled with the world
they waged war with the heavens
and the hell beneath
heedless of the

They fought through the fire
that burned hotter than any fire before or since
they emerged weary
gilding worn away

The brothers, no longer lost
both broken, but determined
bonded stronger, they were
welded tightly together
forged by trials and undeserved

Destiny had been battled
disputed, resisted, opposed until death
then squared off with
and contended with once

The future is unclear, unwritten
not one thing is recorded in the stars
none can foretell what tomorrow or the years ahead will hold
all of what is to come
is vague in the grandest possible sense
and that's the way they want

~The End Thank you for reading and reviewing, if you're so inclined.

Hope is the Thing With Feathers

Title: Hope is the Thing With feathers
Author: dreamlitnight
Genre/pairing: Supernatural, hurt/comfort
Characters: Dean W. and Sam W. and Bobby
Rating: G
Word-count: approx. 1,300
Summary: Dean is ill, and Sam needs help and maybe some hope.
Spoilers: Possibly, if you haven't seen the end of season three or beyond.
Warnings: Talk of psychological damage and broken Dean.
Disclaimer: Neither the Winchesters, nor Bobby are mine. The title isn't mine either, it belongs to Emily Dickinson. I am only borrowing all of them for a bit.
Written for the tags prompt at hoodietime – I chose the # psychological damage/broken!dean tag.
A/N: This did not turn out at all like I intended. Bobby came along and insisted that I write it from his point of view... I couldn't say no. So, I hope some of you will find it acceptable and enjoy the hurt/comfort of it. Thanks.

'Hope' is the thing with feathers -
That perches in the soul -
And sings the tune without the words -
And never stops - at all -...
~ Emily Dickinson

“Hope is the Thing With Feathers”

Bobby wasn't sure how much longer Sam could endure the tortured screams of his brother. Dean had been begging, and crying, and yelling as if he were being torn apart (which in his delirium was probably what he was experiencing) for the the past two days. He had passed out a few times in between the madness, but for the most part, it had been nonstop for hours. They had had to tie him to the bed at one point to keep him from hurting himself. Sam, of course, had released him as soon as Dean had worn himself out, barely struggle anymore and no longer a threat to himself.

The stupid fever though, would not break and as long as it had Dean in its grip, then the flashbacks of hell and who knew what, held him prisoner. In fact, it held them all prisoner, because neither he nor Sam was going to leave Dean alone to fight this battle. This battle that couldn't really be won, this battle that might only be endured, but endure it together they would.

Sam looked exhausted, as he sat on the bed, wiping down his panting brother with a cool cloth. Dean was mumbling and moaning, the screams muffled for the moment, maybe even finished because his voice was mostly gone. He sounded like a chain smoker with a cold, voice squeaking and breaking off in the middle of his ramblings. It was heart wrenching to listen to and also to watch, as Sam tried to be stoic, taking care of his damaged brother.

Bobby was no longer surprised at the bond these two shared or what they were willing to go through for the sake of the other. It did, however, make him want to keep them safe and make everything all right for them. That, he knew, was impossible so he did what he could to make things a little easier and right now that meant restocking their depleted resources.

He had decided that he would go on a quick supply run. They were out of everything. When he mentioned this to Sam, Sam barely acknowledged him as he told him he would be back soon. Bobby left, hoping the situation would improve shortly.

When Bobby returned it was eerily quiet in the house. The silence unnerved him instead of reassuring him. He set his bags down where he stood and made his way quickly up the stairs. Stepping into the dim room, he found the boys in almost the same position he as when he had left earlier. The main difference being, there was not even any sniffling or murmuring, or any sound coming from the pair of them that he could hear. He didn't want to disturb the boys if they were both settled, but he needed to make sure they were better and he wanted Sam to know he was back. Maybe he could even get him to take a break, although Sam's breaks had been few and far between the past week.

Bobby bumped the door, causing it to squeal as it swung open wider, he grimaced at the harshness of it.

Dean didn't move, but Sam lifted his head, slowly as if it were weighted down, “Fever broke, Bobby...”, his voice sounded hoarse as if he had spent the time Bobby had been gone crying, which he probably had, knowing Sam.

“That's good.” Bobby said with a hint of a tired smile, as he stepped farther into the room.

Sam didn't return the smile, staring intently up at the older hunter, “He's so messed up.” He choked out, looking as if he
were pleading for Bobby to fix his brother, to make things right.

Bobby answered reassuredly, “He's gonna be fine.”

“He's broken and... I need him to be okay again... I... just need him.” Sam spoke shakily, bottom lip trembling, eyes bloodshot and brimming with tears.

“Sam.” Bobby shook his head, he knew there was no easy answer this time. He knew Sam was not talking about the fever and how sick Dean had been, he was talking about the memories Dean was trying to ignore, but they kept breaking open every time Dean was at his most vulnerable. Sighing, he answered, “This kind of broken, sometimes can't be mended.”

“No Bobby. No. He's gonna be okay. Right?” He asked, begging for hope, Something that seemed in short supply lately.
Bobby sighed in resignation. Hope wasn't always truth, it was a wish you desired and cherished and it was the thing you held onto when everything else was gone. Well Bobby might be honest to a fault, but he was also a stand in dad to these two knuckleheads and parents sometimes fudged the truth to help ease a child's pain. Bobby could do that, he could offer hope. Sam needed something to hold onto and by golly Bobby was going to give it to him. They weren't going to give up on Dean. They would get him through this. He might not ever be the strong, take charge older brother and gung-ho hunter he had been before, but they would take him however they could have him at this point. They just wanted Dean.

So, Bobby gave Sam the encouragement he needed to keep going. “Yeah. Dean's tough. We're gonna get him back on his feet in no time. He'll be griping, and mouthin', and raring to get up and go.” Bobby chuckled, thinking about the younger hunter's snarky-ness, then choked on a sob at the thought of never hearing that smart-alec nonsense again.

Sam seemed to shrink, becoming the little brother in not only age, but stature again as well. His shoulders hunched and he wrapped one arm around his middle and the other he curled over his still brother, who now only had a single quilt covering him as opposed to being practically buried under a mound of heavy quilts Sam had piled on him after he had whispered pitifully about how cold he was a few hours before.

Sam stared up at Bobby waiting for Bobby to tell him what to do, to rescue them, because that was Bobby's job and he was good at it, “What do we do Bobby? I don't know what to do.”

The tears finally overflowed, trailing wetly down pale cheeks and that just about finished Bobby off. You hurt these two and Bobby wanted to smash something, he hated it.

Clearing his throat, he answered gruffly, working to keep his own tears in check and sound like he wasn't drowning in despair, “We keep him close son, and you just keep being here, being his brother, Sam. That's the only thing that will make a difference. He needs us and we're going to be right here until he's okay again. He's gonna be okay again, Sam.” Bobby squeezed Sam's tense shoulder, holding his gaze until he gave a short nod and a huff of an “okay.”.

Bobby nodded back, then he gave the huddled figure in the bed one more look before walking out of the room to find a private place to curse the angels and demons and anything else he could think of that had hurt his boys... and then he would mourn for the desecration that had been leveled against his little family.

The End

Molly's New Neighbors

 Title: Molly's New Neighbors
Author: dreamlitnight
Genre/pairing: Supernatural, hurt/comfort
Characters: Dean W. and Sam W. and a spunky pregnant lady, Molly
Rating: G
Word-count: approx. 3,000
Summary: Dean is ill, so Sam finds them a temporary place to stay. Molly is very curious about her new neighbors and proceeds to nose about.
Spoilers: None.
Warnings: None
Disclaimer: The Winchesters are not mine.
Written for prompt at hoodietime - PG, Sam, Dean, OCs, gen
I'm craving some outsider POV. That mysteriously tall guy who lives across the street looks so worn out all the time, which is understandable, since he has to look after his chronically ill and/or permanently injured brother (or boyfriend). They totally need a casserole or some other act of human kindness.

“Molly's New Neighbors.”

Molly sighed as she closed her mailbox. Empty. Not even one piece of junk mail to carry to the garbage. She patted her bulging belly affectionately. “I know you're going to be the greatest baby in the world when you get here, but right now you are really putting a crimp in your mommy's life.” Sighing again, she debated on going for a walk, a very small, very short walk. “I know Daddy and the doctor said to stay close to the house and no strenuous activity for the next three weeks, but I wouldn't go very far.” 

Molly frowned and came close to stamping her foot like a fractious toddler. It wasn't fair. Last week she had been a joyously pregnant dog walker and now she was a bored out her head, pregnant woman on house arrest. It had only been some cramping, just a handful of times really, and a little bit of blood, just a little, and poof! Molly was done with her job until after junior's birth and maternity leave. 
She was so lucky to have her job. There were lots of people in this neighborhood who had dogs, but no time to exercise them and Molly adored being outside and she adored dogs, so it was a win win situation. She got paid for doing what she loved. She even had a plan for after junior arrived. It would take careful planning and execution, but by taking fewer dogs at a time and using the awesome stroller she had researched and then purchased, it was going to be great. In the meantime, Molly was bored, bored, bored! 

A loud rumble interrupted her internal diatribe. She turned back towards the street to see a large, black beauty glide by. It turned in the driveway of Margaret Meecher's home, which was just one house down from Molly's own home. Backing up a little, she continued to watch. Margaret had a feisty little poodle named, Mr. Fluffernutter, which was one of the dogs she walked. It always cracked Molly up when she had to call out his name. He was a corker. Molly ignored the little voice that was whispering that she was being nosey, after all Margaret was out of town, so something might be going on that Molly needed to be aware of. She was not a creeper, Molly argued with herself, she was a responsible citizen.

The engine shut off and the driver's door opened with a creak, as a very tall guy levered himself out of the car, shutting the door gently. He stretched both arms above his head and a bare strip of tanned back was revealed, Molly, of course payed no attention to the lovely bareness of it. She was pregnant, not dead, of course she stared as long as it was on display. He lowered his arms and Molly did not frown in disappointment when the jacket slid back into place. Taking a side step around the overgrown bush, she was not hiding behind, she edged closer to get a better view.

The young man hurried around to the passenger side as the door was pushed open.
“Dean, you're supposed to take it easy.” He admonished in a deep voice, as he proceeded to manhandle the other person out of the car.

Then she heard an even deeper voice answer, “Sam, I can get out of  the car by myself. Get off.”  the voice trailed off into a coughing fit.

The tall guy ignored the complaint and continued with what he was doing until he had the other guy, almost as tall as himself, out of the car and mostly upright. Wrapping a long arm around the still wheezing one, he bumped the door shut with his hip and then they made their way slowly to the house.

Molly stepped forward unconsciously drawn to the pair. A bird startled out of the bush, causing Molly to squeak and the tall one to look back over his shoulder. He seemed to hold her frozen gaze for a moment before turning back and making their way inside the house. Molly took a deep breath, feeling a little shaky and made her own way into her home. 

For the next week Molly caught sight of the taller one leaving the house in the noisy black beast of a car and coming back a short time later with a plastic bag bearing the logo of the nearby convenience store. He looked more weary as the week went on and Molly was worrying about what in the world those two were eating if they were getting supplies from a convenience store. It was really none of her business but Molly desperately needed something to occupy her time.

She had come to the conclusion  that being stuck at home was awful. She had finished the nursery in her first trimester, never mind that her husband had told her it might be better to wait until the last month. If she had listened to him, she would have a fun project to piddle with instead of slowly going insane, but she was not admitting that he was right, she didn't need to get that business started. She also discovered that daytime television sucked and oh yeah, it sucked. 

So, on the following monday after a trying weekend, Molly found herself standing near the kitchen window watching for the return of one of her new neighbors. She had found out that they were friends of Margaret's sister and were housesitting. Molly didn't feel guilty at all about digging up that information, after all, it was everyone's job to keep the neighborhood safe. Wasn't it? 

The deep, rumbling heralded the tall one's return. Molly noticed that he seemed more worn out today. His shoulders drooped and he was walking slower than usual. Molly came to a decision. Giving her ever expanding tummy a firm pat, she spoke softly. “Well, baby I think it's time to meet these two boys and the best way to meet new neighbors is with a casserole in your hands.” 

The rest of the morning was spent finding her Grandmother's lasagna recipe and then assembling the difficult but delicious dish. She even made two, so that her husband would have a reason to smile. She could admit she had been a tad bit hard to live with lately. Come on though, prisoners had the right to be cranky. She couldn't even burn off her frustration by lifting weights or much of anything.   Anyway, she was used to being a busy sort of person and it was hard to be so idle. It was a good thing that her husband had a lot more patience than she did.

At 5 o'clock, the timer dinged and Molly carefully set her two bubbling lasagnas on top of the stove. Inhaling the tantalizing scent of sausage and spices made her mouth water. Yummy! After she put one of them into a carrier and sealed it up, she took a deep fortifying breath and armed with her welcome casserole set out to meet the neighbors. 

Working to juggle the bulky carrier around to knock on the door, Molly was startled when the door was pulled opened suddenly. The tall one stood there, hair  sticking up in wild little tufts and his outer shirt half off and hanging crookedly. He had a shadows under his eyes and a scruffy beard shadowing his lean cheeks. Molly closed her mouth from the surprised “O” she was making and took charge. This guy needed help.

Pushing her way through the door, which was a tight squeeze considering how large he was and how large her belly was, something  that was totally beside the point. She took in the darkened room and a huddled mound on one of Margaret's overstuffed sofas. The mound was covered with a fluffy, blue blanket and she could see the shivers from across the room. Ignoring the tall one's spluttering, Molly took the food into the kitchen, speaking as she went. 

“I'm Molly, your neighbor and I brought you a lasagna. It's my grandmother's recipe and it is delicious. It's still hot, so you can eat it now, or put it in the refrigerator and heat it up later.” She came back into the front room to find the tall one still standing by the open front door, looking rattled.

Molly decided to take the bull by the horns, so to speak, by marching up to stand face to chest with the quiet guy. Offering a slim hand, she admonished. “I told you my name and it's only polite to share yours and the shivering lump's.”

After a moments hesitation, her hand was engulfed by a large, calloused hand for a brief handshake. A tentative smile, lit his pale features and he answered in a soft voice. “I'm Sam and the lump is my brother Dean. He's supposed to be in bed, but he insists on the couch for part of the day.”

Shoving his hands in his pockets, he moved slowly towards the couch his brother was ensconced on. 

Molly smiled, speaking in a softer voice to match Sam's. “It's nice to meet you. What's the matter with your brother?”

“He has pneumonia. Should be in the hospital, but talked the doctor into heavy duty prescriptions and trying to get over it at home, or Margaret's home.”

“So, you're housesitting? That's nice. Margaret is a sweetie.”

Sam nodded politely, but Molly could tell he was concerned about his shivering sibling. She walked closer and asked, “Are you running a humidifier? Did the doctor suggest that?”

Sam frowned and shook his head. 

“My dad had bronchitis a few times and our doctor always told Mom to run a cool mist humidifier. It helped. Maybe it would help your brother. I have one you guys can borrow.”

A quiet moan, followed by a breath stealing cough disturbed the conversation. Sam leaned over, pulling back the blanket and helping his brother sit up. If she had thought Sam looked tired, well Dean took the prize.The shadows were so dark under his eyes, it looked like someone had blacked both of them in a fight. His face was also flushed and getting redder from all the harsh hacking. Molly quickly went to to kitchen and brought back a glass of  water, offering it to Sam, who took it gratefully.
He helped his brother to sip it after the worst of the coughing and wheezing had backed off. 

“He sounds bad.” 

Sam grimaced and agreed. “Yeah, he does. Stubborn idiot.”

While Sam was whispering to his seemingly out of it brother, Molly went back to the kitchen and found a clean dish cloth and wet it in cool water. After wringing it out, she went back and offered it as well. 

“Thanks Molly.” Sam said as he took it and gently laid it across Dean's forehead. 

Molly suddenly felt like she was intruding and decided to make a quiet exit. “I'll leave you alone, but don't forget about the lasagna and I'll have my husband, Dan, bring that humidifier over later.”

Sam met her eyes briefly with a half hearted smile and a soft, “Thank you Molly. It was really nice of you to bring us food.”

Molly gave him a bright smile in return, shutting the door gently behind her.

Later that evening Dan took the humidifier over and dropped it off. Molly was disappointed with the lack of information when he returned. Apparently, Sam opened the door, Dan offered the humidifier, Sam took it, thanked him and Dan told him it was no problem to bring it back whenever, and then he came back home. Dan did not find the new neighbors as interesting as Molly, but then he could still go do his job everyday. Molly huffed and only relented when Dan gave her aching feet a good rub. Husbands were good for some things, like foot rubs, but not gathering intel, Molly decided. 

Molly was proud of her fortitude. She managed two days before she made a huge pot of her chicken noodle soup, her grandmother's recipe again because her Molly's grandmother was a rockin' cook. Ladling out a good sized portion into a crockery dish, she covered the remainder of it and left it on the stove. Jack was going to be happy again tonight. 

When Molly knocked on the door this time, it was not opened quickly, in fact nothing happened. The car was in the driveway, so Molly knocked again, louder. She could hear faint noises this time and finally the door opened slowly.

The sick brother, Dean, stood there, the same fluffy blanket wrapped around him and looking just as weary and ill as he had the last time she had seen him. He remained silent but gave her a pitiful little smile and a cocked eyebrow.

Molly was a little flustered, even obviously worn out with pneumonia, standing he was much more adorable, and packed quite a bit  more of a punch than he did when he was laying on the sofa in a shivering heap. This of course made Molly want to hug him, and take care of him, and maybe just stare at him for awhile. 

He cleared his throat, which caused him to cough and then hunch over and sound like he was choking.

This brought Molly out of her stupor. She pushed her way into the house, again, and set the soup down on the entry table, before placing an arm around his broad, trembling back and leading him over to the couch. After getting him seated, she went to the kitchen and brought back a glass of water, just like last time. She seemed to be repeating things today.

He was wheezing noisily, but no longer coughing when she returned offering the drink. He took it with a grateful smile and sipped at it carefully. 

“So, where's your brother?”

“He's so tired from taking care of me, I made him take a nap.” Dean answered with a smirk. “Surprised he didn't wake up when you knocked on the door, but he really hasn't been sleeping enough ...” His voice trailed off as he turned to look down the hall where the bedrooms were located, as if Sam might come walking down the hall at any time.

Molly regarded the shivering man for a moment and then decided to take the soup to the kitchen. “Well, that's good that he's resting, but someone needs to take care of you.”

“Naw. 'm fine.” He denied.

“Sure.” Molly said with disbelieving smile. “Anyway, I brought chicken noodle soup. My grandma's recipe. It's supposed to cure anything.” She continued speaking as she went, then paused asking. “Would you like a bowl of it?”

Dean met her enquiring gaze and gave a small negative shake of his head.

“Are you sure? It might help with that nasty congestion you've got going on.” She wheedled.

He sighed, which turned into another cough and with a self depreciating smile, he acquiesced. “Mmkay.”

Smiling brightly in victory Molly, agreed, “Okay.”
Molly watched as he lifted a slightly, shaking spoon brimming with chicken and noodles to his chapped lips.

His eyes closed in bliss as he savored the first taste. “This is really good.” Dean grinned as he dipped his spoon for another taste. “Really good. Thank you.” He added, meeting Molly's gaze. 

Molly sat quietly on the side chair, careful not to lean too far back in it so that she would be able to get herself back up when she needed to. She didn't think Dean would be much help if she got over balanced with her big tummy. She had been feeling like a turtle a lot lately, well like a turtle on its back, unable to get up by itself.

The only sounds in the room were the the clink of  Dean's spoon as he dipped it in his bowl, occasional slurping sounds and wet sniffs. Before he was even half finished with the soup, his eyes had begun to droop and Molly decided to take his bowl before he nodded off and spilled it on himself.

He gave her a sort of loopy smile and then sort of crumpled sideways onto the sofa, curling into a ball with his blanket. 
Molly harrumphed and set about straightening his blanket out and getting him to shift into a more comfortable looking position. Laying a cool hand on his forehead, Molly gauged the sick man's temperature. He was very warm and probably needed to get some acetaminophen in him. She felt him lean into her touch, moaning softly. Smiling in sympathy, Molly carded her hand gently through his rumpled hair. Grumbling and coughing Dean buried his head in the covers and finally settled. Molly tucked the covers a little more firmly around him and then carried the dishes back to the kitchen.  
Molly was seated, one of Margaret's back issues of 'Dog Fancy' on her lap and a cup of herbal tea in her hand. Dean was napping on the sofa dosed with acetaminophen, his prescription cough syrup, a hit of his inhaler, and the humidifier puffing away, when Sam stumbled into the room wild eyed and even wilder haired. His clothes were rumpled and he was missing a sock. He stopped and stared at the merry little scene before him.

Molly smiled serenely, taking a sip of her warm tea. She put the magazine on the side table and stood up slowly, worried that she might startle the poor boy. Sam just stood, mouth agape and still not a hint sound escaped him. 
“Would you like some chicken noodle soup? Dean said you needed to sleep, we tried not to disturb you. Also, I fed him some soup and gave him his medicine, well not the antibiotic, he said he didn't need that until later...”

Sam made a funny spluttering sound, interrupting her rambling explanation, and tripped his way over to his brother, giving Molly a wide berth as he went.

Molly serenely finished off her tea and debated on having a second cup while she waited patiently for Sam to get his bearings.

Finally, after checking his brother thoroughly, eliciting a few rough moans and muttered words, Sam seemed satisfied that Dean  had not been harmed by his absence or Molly's care of him and he slumped down in the chair next to the sofa. He ran both hands through his hair, causing it to stick up in even wilder disarray, if that was possible. 

“So, soup?” Molly reiterated.

Sam raised his head and stared at Molly for a moment, then smiled and nodded.

Molly nodded back and did not waddle to the kitchen to get him a bowl of soup. She was just putting an extra sway to her step, adding some sexy to her swagger. Oh who was she kidding? She had turned into a duck, and a slow one at that. At least she had these two poor boys to keep her occupied for a little while. Who would've thought these brothers could be more distracting than the dogs she used to walk. They certainly were prettier to look at Molly admitted to herself with a guilty giggle as she heated the soup. It was funny how life sometimes worked that way, they totally needed her and well, she needed a distraction, so yay!, for fate or kismet or whatever. Sometimes the powers that be got things right. 
~The End

A Winchester Moment

 Title: A Winchester Moment
Author: dreamlitnight
Genre/pairing: Supernatural, hurt/comfort
Characters: Dean W. and Sam W. and John W.
Rating: G
Word-count: approx. 2,100
Summary: Dean is hurt, while on a hunt with his dad and brother. There is a monster, and arguing, and pain, and a little comfort.
Spoilers: None
Warnings: None
Disclaimer: The Winchesters are not mine.
Written for prompt at hoodietime - Just what the prompt says: the boys are on a hunt (could be pre-series, or during the series) and Dean breaks his ankle. They're in the woods and the thing they're hunting is still out there.
Cue lots of Sam or John (or Sam and John?) trying to help Dean limp through the forest as the MOTW huffs and lumbers through the nearby trees, stalking them but never coming quite close enough to shoot. (If John and Sam are both in the fic, would love to see them fighting over the best way to take care of Dean!)

           “A Winchester Moment”

Dean  came back to himself slowly, susurrant sounds invading the peaceful darkness he had been cocooned in moments before causing the calm to retreat, leaving behind the sharpness of icy coldness and an all consuming pain. Gasping he struggled clumsily, trying to escape the disruption. When rough hands grabbed at him, restraining his movements, he became frantic, his breaths sawing in and out and his chest feeling like it was being squeezed in a vice. Forcing his eyes open, Dean worked to bring his surroundings into focus. Finally the deep voices of his dad and brother pierced the panic and he was able to bring his breathing back from hyperventilating territory to mildly freaked out. The hands holding him gentled as he quit fighting and he was able to make out actual words instead of buzzing noise.

“Hey kiddo, it's okay. Just lay still. Your brother and I are gonna get this all sorted out. You with us Dean?” His dad's gruff voice spoke with that firm “everything is fine” tone that always helped Dean  to convince himself of that very thing, even when it didn't match the reality of the situation. 

Dean opened his mouth to answer, but a white hot pain shot up from his right ankle all the way to the top of his addled head. Instead of answering, he was only able to keen a wounded helpless sound. He felt warm air tickle his ear as his little brother leaned close and offered reassuring nonsense in an effort to soothe him.

“ 's okay Dean. You're okay. We gotcha. Just have to see what that thing did to you. All right?”

“Looks like his ankle is pretty bad. Don't think he's gonna be walking on that Dad.”

“Hmmmm.” His dad's growly voice answered. “Think you're right.”

Dean settled into the comforting tones, concentrating on pushing the pain away to a more manageable level. He let himself drift in limbo as they “sorted him out”.

Once again Dean was brought out of his peaceful place by his dad and brother. This time they  were pushing and pulling him into an upright position. He wasn't on board with the whole standing up deal and he let them know vocally. To which his brother replied with soft “shushes” and his dad with a harsh “suck it up soldier”. As the world spun in a colorful, kaleidoscope circle, Dean could make out the strident tones of an argument between the other two Winchesters. He was really not up to the whole peacemaker schtick and so he chose to ignore it and concentrate on not vomiting on either of their boots, although he reasoned in a foggy sort of way, that puking on their boots might bring a halt to the argument. 

The pushing and pulling had ended up with Dean more or less hanging between the two, his feet barely touching the ground as they drug him along. The trio made slow stumbling progress back toward the Impala and safety. Dean let them do all of the work, he had never agreed to the walking part anyway. His whole body felt impossibly awkward and unwieldy, like the part that kept it all connected was broken. He tried to raise his head to tell them that exactly, but the effort failed and only served to revive the tilt-a-whirl world. This, in turn, pushed the fiery pain back to the forefront. A low groan escaped him, causing his brother to start up again with the “shhhhhs” and his dad to grip him tighter and set a faster pace. 

“Dad, you've got to slow down. We're hurting him.”  Sam demanded, voice rough.

“Sam, that thing, whatever it is, is still out there. I can hear it. We've got to move. Dean's tough. We'll get him all fixed up as soon as we're safe.” 

Sam huffed in frustration. “I know it's out there, but it seems to be keeping its distance and if we keep pulling Dean around like this, we could puncture his lung or something.”

The eldest Winchester stopped, asking in that calm tone, the tone that Dean knew belied the eminent explosion of John Winchester. “You wanna do this now?”

Sam answered without a hint of contrition. “Do what? Disagree with the great John Winchester?”

Dean closed his eyes in resignation and tried to brace himself for the fallout that was headed their way. 

“What did you say son?” That voice was so deep and so soft Dean could barely make it out over the pounding in his head. 

Sam huffed again. “I think you heard me dad.”

Dean never got to hear John's reply because the forrest exploded instead of John and Dean was ripped away from the squabbling pair and flung into the blackest darkness. 
PainPainPainPain is all Dean can seem to focus on. His whole world had narrowed down to one that one thing. Pain everywhere. There was nothing else, only lightening bolts of pain zinging through his body. Head to toe and everywhere in between. There was no sound, no color, nothing.... until there was something... something wildly jostling him against the hard plains of... something that was warm and vital and he could hear thunder and feel the vibrations against his cheek and then the world flowed back in on him like a tidal wave of noise and movement and Dean once again wanted to be released back to the nothing, but his family was trying to save him... trying to save themselves, so Dean determinedly pulled himself together and gave it his best effort to join them.

They were stumbling down the barely there path again at a fast clip and no arguing this time. Dean decided that whatever had happened had changed his little brother's mind and now he and the eldest Winchester seemed to be working in tandem. Dean struggled to get his feet under him, pulling against their grip. When his right ankle made contact with the ground, bearing a tiny fraction of his weight, he remembered that, oh yeah that was the one that was a little out of whack, and a whining moan escaped as he collapsed back into his family's grappling embrace. 

“Easy kiddo. Just let us do the work. You hang in there and try to stay quiet. That thing is wounded now, a little angry and still tracking us. You hear me Dean? Gotta stay quiet. Okay?”

Dean honed in on his father's gruff voice, tried to nod his head in accord with the whispered orders, but it only seemed to want to wobble heavily on his spindly feeling neck. He settled for a hoarse, “ 'kay. Be quiet.”

“And stay with us.” Sam prodded. 

“Ss-stay.” Dean obediently parroted back. Wheezing a little on the end of the word.

The trio was still moving, albeit a little slower, but still gaining ground away from the threat. Over the panting breaths and the rustling of the thick undergrowth brushing against boots, Dean heard the sharp snap of breaking branches and an eerie chuffing, slightly off to the left of their current path. He caught the strong scent of decay and was gagging before he could stop himself. 

“Stinks don't it?” Sam asked with a soft chuckle. 

“Nnngh.” Dean hummed in agreement. It smelled like a fresh grave and Dean wanted away from it. The slight breeze caused him to shiver as it skimmed his clammy face and sweat damp hair. It also carried the fetid odor of the trailing creature, surrounding them with the suffocating smell of death. Dean coughed, working to keep his stomach contents where they were. Sammy and even his dad were coughing and grumbling almost silently. The breeze petered out and the smell lessened, bringing a  small bit of relief. 
Sam stumbled, nearly toppling all three to the rough ground.

Their dad grunted in effort as he stepped counter to Sam's downward momentum and by strength of determination, kept them upright with only a slight off center dance before they were moving forward again. 
“Almost there boys.” John encouraged them. “Just keep walking. We're almost there.”

Sam choked on a derisive laugh. “Dad, we need to stop and shoot that thing again. It's gaining on us. If we keep “walking” it's going to run over us.”

Dean tried to nod in agreement with Sam's idea of shooting it again, because he wasn't sure he could survive being run over again.

The older hunter only growled, ignoring both sons and never slowed his quick pace. 

Surprisingly Sam didn't continue to protest, but Dean noticed him keeping track of the creature's path running almost parallel to their own. 

Dean was doing his best to stay alert, but time kept slipping in and out of focus. He kept hearing his brother murmuring encouragement to him offset with grumbling dire predictions under his breath about what was going to happen if that thing caught them. 

Suddenly a bellowing roar rent the humid air and Dean was unceremoniously dropped onto the rocky earth. He lay there trying to catch his breath and make sense of the whirling activity around him.  The sickening throbbing in his ankle was now competing with the hellish throbbing of his head. He could feel warm blood running down from his forehead and snaking across his dry lips as he gasped for air. The copper tang of it so strong that he felt nauseous and woozy. Sparkles were edging into his vision and still not much air was making it into his straining lungs. He felt his tense muscles unexpectedly go lax, leaving the effort of survival behind. Dean Winchester was done. He wanted to help his family. That was his main mission in this world, but he had nothing left to give. His body felt as if it no longer belonged to him and he let the beckoning void take him where it may.
This time, the third time, when consciousness returned it was to a comforting throaty rumble and a large hand gently carding through his hair instead of threat of death and the swirling chaos of before. Dean realized that they had somehow made it and he decided that the third time really was the charm. They were in the Impala, with their Dad driving while he and Sam were in the back seat. He could make out the faint conversation they were having about somehow, accidentally killing the creature. Apparently those creatures could take consecrated iron or salt, they didn't even mind a little holy water, but spill a little sports drink on them and they sizzled like frying bacon. Huh, who knew that nasty tasting stuff was good for more than torturing Dean with when he had the flu. 

Dean decided to just enjoy the peace of the moment. His dad and brother were getting along and he was breathing a little easier, his body was mostly numb and pain seemed kind of a distant thing at the moment. His head, he noted, was resting on his little brother's leg, and Sam kept petting and smoothing his hair as he chuckled at something their dad had just said. There was camaraderie between the oldest and the youngest and it felt nice, so Dean relaxed and kept his wakefulness to himself. They were all safe in his baby, Sammy and Dad were agreeing on something (which was very rare nowadays), and he knew they would get him sorted out soon. They would probably even give him the good stuff. Yeah, Dean decided to just enjoy the moment. Only a Winchester could call what Dean was enjoying a “moment”, but hey,  “moments” were few and far between, so Winchesters took joy wherever they could get it. 

The Wind Cries, Mary

Title: The Wind Cries, Mary
Author: dreamlitnight
Genre/pairing: Supernatural, hurt/comfort
Characters: Dean W. and Sam W. and a tornado
Rating: G
Word-count: approx. 1,500
Summary: Dean and Sam are out to de-haunt, un-huant, something like that; a house and tornado tries to blow them away...
Spoilers: none
Warnings: Contains angst.
Disclaimer: The Winchesters are not mine. Also, the title is borrowed from a song by Jimi Hendrix.

Written for prompt at hoodietime:The boys are on a hunt and end up separated - not by distance, but by access (say a wall or a cave in or whatever). Dean is hurt bad, and Sam can hear him, but he can't get to him & he's unable to call for help. I want the angst & the hurt factor as Dean gets worse and worse (goes into seizures, breathing lessens, pain increases - whatever) & all he wants is for Sam to get him the hell out of there!

A/N: I hope this is at least close to what you had in mind. I'm not sure I got enough panic in here. I have had such a tough time writing anything lately and then I saw this prompt and... well... I was inspired. Watch out for lurking typos, they are clever little buggers. 

"The Wind Cries, Mary"

The boys heard the storm sirens go off right before they heard the freight train that came roaring through the old, haunted house they were in the middle of un-haunting. The only problem was, there were no train tracks near the house. The Winchesters had time to meet each other's wide-eyed gaze before all hell broke loose. A cacophony of screeching, screaming noise overwhelmed them. Wailing moans pierced the heavy air and the house began to shake and tremble. A sound, like a child desperate for its mother, seemed to fill every space, bringing such a pall of despair that the boys longed to escape the hopeless cry; but a terrible force pulled them into a vortex of terrifying pressure and darkness. Then every sense was lit up with too much of everything, until there was nothing and the brother's lost each other and then they lost themselves.

When Sam next became aware of anything at all, it was bright and oh, so very quiet. He discovered he was lying on what was left of the first floor of the house and there was nothing but blue sky and wispy clouds above him where the second floor should have been. Taking a deep breath, he drew in the sweetness of rain-fresh air, which seemed a little ironic since he was covered in dirt and debris as was everything around him. He shivered in his damp clothing and wondered how the air could smell so crisp and new and good, when the world looked like it had just been turned upside down. Gingerly, he sat up and although sore from probably a body full of bruises, he seemed to be intact, all except for the dull ache radiating from the back of his head (probably bonked it when he fell, or flew, or however he had ended up lying there on his back). Letting his gaze roam around the massive mess of destruction, he realized with a start that Dean was missing.

“Dean!” Sam bellowed as adrenalin surged. Frantic, he stood and found himself swaying as dizziness assaulted him. He took a staggering step and then forced himself to steadiness. Blowing out a determined breath, he called for Dean again. Faintly, he heard what sounded like his name coming from far away. He spun in a slow circle, searching for any sign of his brother.

Once again, he called and was answered by the faint sound of his name. This time he realized it was coming from behind and possibly beneath him. Working to keep the panic at bay. Sam continued to call and listen, until he had zeroed in on where the sound was coming from. It was the back of where the house used to be and the area was covered with two large, downed trees and a flipped truck. This caused Sam a moment of dread as he looked to where they had left the Impala. She sat, covered in leaves and dirt, but seemingly unharmed. Sam let out a relieved sigh and then carefully knelt down farthest away from the side the truck was on. Putting his face closer to the remaining floor, he called out.  “Dean, are you down there?”

“Get me out of here Sammy!” The answer was louder and definitely belonged to his missing brother.
Sam sighed in relief. “Working on it. Are you hurt? Are you in a basement or something?”

“Um... not sure, but think it might be a cellar. It seems kind of small.”

“Okay. Are you hurt Dean?” Sam repeated.

“Maybe.... maybe a little.” Dean answered tentatively, then adding a little more info. “I'm uh, kind of stuck. Kind of wedged in here, so hurrying would be great.”

Sam was quiet for a moment pondering this information, when his brother yelled his name again and this time it ended with a choking cough. This set off all the alarms in Sam's head. Sam answered back quickly. “Just working on a plan Dean. I'm still here.” He really hoped Dean was not trying to hide how badly he was injured, but knowing his brother, he suspected it was exactly what he was doing.

After more than an hour of trying to find a way to his brother, Sam was nearing the edge of panic he had so far successfully held off. There was no cell signal, which he suspected was because the storm had taken the cell towers out and he could hear his brother's voice getting weaker. They were in the middle of nowhere, the trees that were in a pile with the truck weren't budging and so far, he had not found an entrance to wherever his injured brother was trapped. But if there was one thing Dean had taught his little brother, that was perseverance and Sam had it in spades.

So while Sam was topside fighting off the panic and trying to get to Dean, Dean was fighting off a panic attack of his own at being practically buried alive for the second time in his life.

Dean had awoken to pitch black, stuffy air, and something heavy across his chest and right arm. The noise of before had been horrific and it almost made the quietness of the place he was now unbearable. The only sound he heard at first was the eerie creaking of the house, which impossibly, was above him now. Dean had no idea how or where he had ended up, but it sure seemed that he was now under the creepy house he had been inside of just a few minutes or maybe hours ago. After spending a few frantic moments pushing and shoving at the heavy weight against him, he had finally given in to the pain and the inability to take a deep breath had put a stop to his struggles.

The faint sound of his name had brought a sweet rush of relief. Sammy. Sammy was okay and looking for him. Taking the deepest breath he could manage, Dean called out for his little brother. “Sam, I'm here!”

His call was met with an answer and then heavy footsteps that grew louder until they were right on top of him. “Sammy!” Dean called again, his voice cutting off with a choked wheeze as sharp pain arced across his chest.

Dean was talking himself down from an impending panic attack. He knew Sam was trying to find a way to get him out of her, but he wanted out now. He was hot and there was not enough air... he couldn't breathe. He... couldn't …. With his eyes squeezed tightly shut, he forced logical thinking to the forefront. There was plenty of air. He could even feel a faint breeze every now and then. He was fine. He was fine. He was... not fine! He just wanted his brother. Was that too much to ask? After all they had been through, Dean did not think that was much too ask for. “Sammy, please hurry. Please. I need out of here. Sammy?!”

“Dean. I'm trying. Hang in there. Okay? You hear me Dean?”

“I hear you.” Dean called, causing him to end up coughing and working to catch his breath.


Finally the coughs died down and Dean was able to answer his brother's frenzied calls. “I'm okay. Not going anywhere.” The panic he could hear in Sam's voice gave Dean the added strength he needed to revert back to older brother mode. Watch out for Sammy. Keep Sammy safe. Don't make him worry about your sorry butt. This became his mantra. With those words lodged firmly in his mind he was able to wait and breathe, a little less desperately.

This lasted until he noticed the weight of silence that had fallen. He could no longer hear footsteps or sound of Sam's muttering or any sounds at all for that matter. All was quiet and that's when actual panic set in. Dean yelled loudly for his brother. “Sam!” but got no answer. Sam was hurt, or that ghost was still around and had him cornered, or... he had given up and left... No. Sam wouldn't leave him. A voice whispered that he had done it before. Dean argued that Sam would not leave when he was trapped. But that knowledge did not keep Dean calm. He pushed at the thing pinning him down and he ignored the pain this caused as he wrestled and wheezed and coughed until tears were streaming down both cheeks.

He was not crying.
He wasn't. It was the coughing that was causing the tears. Dean Winchester did not cry. When despair began to engulf him and he felt like this dark, empty place would become his tomb- inexplicably he felt a large warm hand patting clumsily at his shoulder. He was so totally exhausted that he didn't even flinch as he attempted to make sense of what was happening.

Then a hoarse voice spoke, almost in his ear. “Hey big brother, found the door. The storm had pushed dirt over it, but I found it. Gonna get you outta here.”

Dean took a shuddering breath and tried to answer, but all that came out was a choked sob. He still wasn't crying. There was just a lot of dust in this place.

“ 's okay Dean. I gotcha.” Sam soothed, patting him gently.

And the funny thing was, Dean was suddenly all right again because Sam had him. Even with the heavy thing still on his chest and even though he was still stuck in that hot, dark place, Dean was all right now because Sammy was here and Dean knew Sammy was going to fix this. That's just what they did for one another. They were brothers and they were Winchesters.