Heart's Desire II: Follow The Light, It's Not In Vain

Your time will come, I'll make you feel it
You're still young like the sun after rain
Follow the light it's not in vain
And you will see I'll touch your feelings

-Born to Touch Your Feelings, Scorpions


Dean woke up fast, which was normal for him. He knew exactly where he was -- at the apartment, in his bedroom. He squelched the reflexive thought - 'Sam's apartment' but the thought was already there and it was a second later that he realised why waking up the way he had this morning was not a normal thing.

Sam was asleep beside him.

His little brother was asleep on his stomach, one arm flung possessively over Dean's chest. His face was turned toward Dean and he was wearing a faint smile as he snored softly.

That part wasn't really that new. He'd slept with his brother before -- more often than not, when they were little. He'd gotten used to being his brother's pillow -- Sam's head in his lap in the back of dad's car, or tucked into a bed together in any of a thousand motel rooms. Dean remembered how hard it was the first time they'd lived in an apartment after years of being on the road, and Dad had bought them bunk beds. Sleeping separately had lasted only until Sam had learned how to climb the ladder; then Dean had only fallen asleep after Sam had crawled under the blankets with him.

But never, in all those times, had Sam been naked and still smelling of sex.

Sam stirred and moved closer, nuzzling sleepily at Dean's chest. Dean didn't move -- it was pretty obvious what had happened, and the fact it had happened more than once made it pretty hard to tell himself he'd imagined it. Dreamt it -- and wasn't that something to worry about? His little brother having visions?

It was entirely possible Sam had lied, made up a story... but to do what? Get Dean into bed with him, to convince him to have sex?

Dean let that thought walk around in his brain for awhile. Sex. Sam. Sex with Sam.

It wasn't like he hadn't had this fantasy before, and had jerked off to the idea of Sam doing the things he'd done yesterday. But it had only ever happened when he just couldn't stop himself anymore. When knowing he shouldn't had finally fallen to the fact he wanted.

And he had. God.

He looked down at Sam again. How in the hell had he let this happen? And why wasn't he trying harder to remember all the reasons it had to stop?

"Dean." Sam's eyes blinked open, far too awake for someone who had been fast asleep seconds before, and fixed on his own. "Whatever you're thinking, stop it. It's too early in the morning for freak-outs."

"You don't even know what time it is." He had no idea if that was true or not -- he didn't have much clue, himself. The sun was up, but not too high -- probably eight o'clock, and he glanced at his watch and realised that ok, maybe he did have a clue. His internal clock was never far off, and apparently having sex with Sam didn't flip his entire world upside-down.

"Doesn't matter." Sam yawned and propped himself up on one arm, leaning against Dean. "Do I need to distract you?"

"I don't see how that would help," Dean said quickly. God, all he needed was to make things worse.

Sam's lips quirked up into a smile, his dimples showing. "We'll have to work on that." He paused and then added more seriously, "It's all right, Dean. Really."

"All right? All right?" Dean could hear himself starting to shriek -- he hadn't reached that particular high note since his voice had changed, not counting the time Sam had racked him in the balls with a pool cue.

His shriek was cut off when Sam grabbed onto Dean's head and covered Dean's mouth with his own.

There were fourteen ways he could get Sam off him without breaking any bones, and half a dozen more that involved injury not serious enough to take Sam to the ER. Two ways he could get Sam dumped on the floor on his ass, out of Dean's bed and away from his mouth.

Which didn't explain to Dean why he opened his mouth and let his head sink back into the pillow, with Sam rolling on top of him and holding him down.

Sam was a great kisser -- Dean had noticed that last night and if he had forgotten he was certainly getting a refresher course right now. Sam's hands were threading into Dean's hair, his hips moving lightly against Dean's, his cock...

No, no, no, no, Dean screamed to himself. Not that his own body and cock in particular weren't screaming 'yes, yes' right back, and a little bit louder than the part of his brain which was insisting he had to stop this right now, or he'd regret it for a very long time to come.

He needed to let go of Sam, but he felt so damned good, after wanting him for so long. Dean felt something inside himself clench. His heart? His lungs? Maybe he was having a stroke and he'd die, and find out this was a dying dream.

Sam pulled back just far enough to murmur Dean's name. "It's all right," he repeated. "It's okay. You can feel this, have this. I promise." And Sam's eyes when Dean met them were... deeper somehow. Older.

"...the fuck is going on, Sam?" Yesterday Sam had had a vision of the future, which had apparently involved them having sex. Yesterday, he'd had sex with Sam. Now he had the weirdest sensation that the person he'd woken up with wasn't exactly the same person he'd fallen asleep with.

Or had it started before....

He looked at his brother more closely, and thought about how easily he had fired the crossbow. "You weren't practicing," he said quietly.

"No, I wasn't," Sam replied equally quietly.

Sam had made shots he'd learned to make after... how much experience? How many years had Sam seen in his vision?

Seen, or-- "So you came back?" he asked, because seeing the future didn't give you the ability to hit a bull's-eye when before you couldn't group your shots more than a hand's span. "How...far? Why?" What the hell had happened that Sam had come back to now, this time and place and... propositioned him?

And why didn't any of this sound utterly impossible? Freakin' demons.

Sam sighed and finally lowered his gaze. "I don't know. I... Yesterday I just woke up and there was all this -" he waved a hand at his head, "-stuff in my head."

"What stuff?" He knew what Sam had told him yesterday. He knew about the part where Sam remembered them having sex. But clearly there was a lot more going on than he'd realised.

He was already mentally going through what he recalled from dad's stories, trying to remember if he'd ever encountered anything like this before. He should call dad and ask--

Dean mentally choked. Or that would be a really, really fucking bad idea.

"It's a little... hard to sort it all out," Sam said, watching his hand trace the recently healed scar on Dean's chest. "I get... flashes of... memories, visions, whatever, but they seem to be related to whatever I'm thinking or doing now. And sometimes, it's like I just... know stuff. Know how things are supposed to be. Like us."

"How...much? A year? More?" He tried not to think about dad. Tried not to think about just exactly what Dad would say when he found out. Whether he'd follow through on a threat made years ago about something so stupid Dean couldn't even remember, but it was the first time he'd seen his father furious. Dean had never seen his father raise his hand towards him before that night, and though it hadn't flown, Dean had always known, after that, it was possible.

More likely his father would just scream at him and walk away, expecting to come back and Dean would have everything right again.

Focusing on Sam's visions didn't exactly distract him, but it was better than freaking.

"I don't know." Sam frowned. "More than a year. A lot more, I think."

More than a year... Dean gaped at him. "Dude, you are not older than me!"

"I'm the same age I always was!" Sam shot back, along with a look that was pure exasperated little brother. "I'm still me, Dean. Stop trying to make me into some kind of... of... body snatcher or something."

"You're the one who said you got... several years downloaded into your brain. I'm just saying... it wasn't more than four." Dean said it firmly, like if he believed it hard enough it would be true.

Not that he really cared, except that there was no way in hell his little brother was going to magically turn out to be older than him. No way.

Sam rolled his eyes. "Whatever."

Dean thumped him, not caring that it might be a little too hard on bare skin. Which made him remember -- bare skin -- and maybe he should try harder to focus on this vision thing of Sam's, and less on the fact he wanted to spend the day in bed with him.

Sam was watching his face again, his own expression one of fascination. "I'm not sure anyone should be able to change feelings that quickly," he observed.

Which made absolutely no sense. "What?"

"Dude, it's all over your face." Sam poked him in the chest. "You can't figure out if you're freaked out, interested, wanting to thump me, or turned on. Let me know when you figure out which one to go with so I can hold up my end of the conversation."

Well, that made it easier, anyway. His brother being irritating triggered an ingrained reflex. Dean thumped him again, hard.

"Ow," Sam complained, rubbing his head. "Yeah, figures you'd pick thumping."

"And after 18 years it still doesn't work," Dean muttered. Because Sam was still being irritating, for all that he was just lying there, looking like there was nothing to be worried about.

Sam smiled as he continued watching him.

Dean sighed. "Okay... fuck." Sam was right. He had to make a decision. Visions, dad, bed. Figuring out what was going on in Sam's head was probably going to take the rest of his life, so he shelved that one for now. Dad... yeah. Until dad showed up maybe he could get away with pretending dad would only kill him, then salt and burn the bones so Dean couldn't haunt his ass.

Although it might be kinda fun, shadowing the old man on hunts, razzing him and pointing out when something was about to get the drop on him.

As if dad would let Dean haunt him, after finding him naked in bed with his brother.

Okay, so - that left bed. Specifically, the very thing dad would kill him for.

Sam's smile got even wider. "So anything I can do to help you out here?"

Dean thought about it, then acted like he was thinking hard, about it. There were only two real options, and he really wasn't sure he could say the first one. "You could bring me a couple breakfast burritos," he said, knowing full well the taco stand was a good fifteen minutes' drive away.

He watched as Sam considered the request, then shook his head. "Nope. I'm not leaving." There seemed to be a bit more... oomph to the words than just refusing to go get breakfast required.

"You asked." Dean let the accusation slide into his voice. Better by far to tease him, something he could do in his sleep, drunk off his ass, or half-concussed. All of which he'd proven, before.

"Uh huh. We can go grab some breakfast burritos together if you want. After."

With a suspicious look at Sam, Dean asked, "After what?"

Sam moved his hips lewdly against Dean. "What do you think?"

Dean's cock told him what a fantastic idea it was, and lauded his brother for his genius. Dean told his cock to shut the fuck up and let him think.

Dean pressed his hand against his brother's back, feeling just how warm his skin was, how good it felt to hold him, and how bright and clear Sam's eyes were as he looked at Dean.

Fuck, he was lost. He'd been lost the very first time Sam had opened his eyes and looked at him -- Dean didn't have many clear memories of age four, but the first time his little brother smiled at him was one of them, and the only good one from that whole year.

He poked at the memory and tried to remind his body why this was not going to happen. But the same pair of eyes were looking at him, that same smile was burning a path through his heart.

Sam traced Dean's lips with a light finger. "I love your mouth. It's just so..."

"Perfect," Dean said, trying for smug, and wondering if it should really feel this good. He'd had sex before, he'd lain with a lover and touched and talked and cuddled, and he couldn't remember feeling...like this.

Like he wanted to pull Sam in and not let him go.

"Yeah," Sam agreed, leaning down to lick at Dean's mouth. "It is. Made for kissing."

"Pretty good at it, too," Dean said, because he'd been bragging about his prowess since the first time a girl had kissed him for a second time. It was easier than thinking about the fact Sam was nuzzling at his mouth and that Dean's hand was beginning to wander down Sam's back, towards an ass that Dean had -- No. Not there, Dean told himself. Not... but Sam's tongue was on his lips and Dean's mouth was opening as though Dean's brain had no say in the matter.

He couldn't let himself think about what he wanted, but the image of Sam fucking him suddenly hit.

Sam's hands were sliding down Dean's sides, light caresses that had far more effect than anything that light should have. "I could kiss you for hours," Sam murmured against Dean's mouth. "Days even." He smiled. "Make it my life's career."

"Jesus, Sam," Dean breathed. How the hell had this happened? Yesterday everything made sense. It wasn't normal, but he understood it. Now -- he felt like he was drowning. He squeezed his eyes closed because there was something about this. There had to be -- something to explain why he was hearing and feeling and getting everything he'd ever wanted after a lifetime of giving away all the best pieces -- the strawberry lollipops and the unbroken cookies and the handfuls of change to buy Sam's comic books.

Shapeshifter, he thought. Demon possession. Insanity. Dreams. Nightmares.

All more likely than the fact Sam loved him and wanted him like this.

All more likely than the fact Dean might actually get--

"Stop it," Sam told him, nipping sharply to punctuate the words, before darting his tongue out to sooth the hurt. "This is real. It's all right. You can have this. I want this -- I want you." He kissed him slow and lingering. "Some day you're going to believe me."

Dean turned and pressed his face against his brother's, closing his eyes tightly. Fuck, but he was turning into such a girl, fucking crying because he couldn't have what he wanted. He grabbed hold of his emotions and stuffed them down, hard. Remembered his dad's voice, telling him no, they couldn't buy that, they needed to get... Anything. Five years old and his hand on something bright and plastic, and seeing his dad take it away and replace it with a jar of baby food.

He laughed, once, because thinking of his dad wasn't making him want Sam any less.

Sam had pulled back again just enough to study his face and now he smiled sadly at Dean. "Someday you'll believe me," he repeated softly, resting his forehead against Dean's until they were breathing the same air. "I promise."

Dean shook his head, because there were a lot of things in the world he was prepared to believe in, but having -- keeping Sam, was not one of them.

He thought of the letter from Stanford, still lying wherever Sam had dropped it, and felt his stomach fall down through the soles of his feet.

"Someday," Sam murmured, then kissed him again, before sliding down, under the covers, his tongue leaving a warm wet trail of sensation across Dean's skin as he went.

"No," Dean whispered, not sure why he said it, when everything inside him wanted Sam to keep going. He groped for Sam's head through the blankets, but couldn't seem to coordinate enough to get a hold.

Then Sam's mouth was closing over his cock.

A strangled noise came out of Dean's mouth and he couldn't have said under pain of death if he was trying to say 'yes' or 'no.' But it felt so good, so fucking good and besides -- the little voice in his head which could speak English reminded him -- he had been here already. No more sin than this, twice, than to have done it at all.

He bucked his hips upwards as Sam pulled up slightly. Sam didn't play with him like he had the night before. Instead it was hard and fast and overwhelming, as if he was trying to block out everything else for Dean than this, them, together. Sam was good enough at it that it almost worked.

As it was, his brain only grew quiet, not silent, even as Dean tried to put all his attention on what he was feeling. But what he was feeling was the problem, despite and because of how good and intense it felt. When he finally came, his head was already spinning.

He reached out for Sam as he waited for the room to stop moving.

And Sam was there immediately for him, wrapping his long limbs around him and pressing close, kissing Dean and letting him taste himself in his brother's mouth.

Forcibly, Dean told himself to just stop thinking already. There was one good way to do that -- and it wasn't like he didn't owe Sam already. He pushed Sam onto his back and slid down his brother's body, mirroring Sam's earlier motion.

For all he'd seen his brother naked, and for all that he'd had his hand on Sam yesterday, he'd never actually looked at him, fully-erect and leaking pre-cum. Dean didn't hesitate before wrapping his mouth around the head, used to the mechanics of giving blow jobs, but not expecting the realisation that he already knew his brother's scent.

Sam made a strangled, gasping sound when Dean's mouth closed over him, his hands coming down to grab onto Dean's head. He didn't actually buck upwards, but Dean could feel the tension in his muscles that said he wanted to.

Dean held him down, one arm pressed across Sam's hip bones and the other tucked around Sam's thigh. He used his weight to hold Sam more or less in place, because he knew pretty soon Sam would be trying to choke him with his cock.

Which was the point, but Dean had learned to enjoy not gagging when he was giving blow jobs.

He opened his mouth wider and took Sam in halfway and sucked lightly. That got more noise out of Sam, a cross between moans and half understood words.

Dean catalogued the reaction, ignoring the fact he was acting like he needed to know this -- but even when he knew he was never going to be with someone again, he tried to notice and repeat the things his lovers liked. Attentive, a woman had called him once.

She'd given him a kiss on the cheek when he'd left.

Dean used his tongue to wrap around Sam's cock, twisting it around and searching for spots that would make Sam make noise.

Sam, it seemed, was very vocal as almost every spot evoked some noise. But there were some that made him a bit louder, made his voice go a bit higher in pitch and those were the ones that Dean concentrated on. When he heard his brother's breathing hitch in a high, breathless gasp, Dean smiled to himself and swallowed as much of Sam as he possibly could.

Sam screamed Dean's name when he came, his hands tightening in Dean's hair to the point of pain.

'He must not have had too many of these,' Dean thought. Or perhaps his care-givers just hadn't said anything -- and so not surprising when the thought of someone else giving Sam a blow job made him angry.

He gave Sam's cock one last kiss, then pushed himself up towards the head of the bed.

Completely limp and boneless, Sam looked at him with eyes that shone with adoration and even a bit of awe. "Th-that was..."

"Not quite as long as I expected, but you're young. You'll learn to make it last." Dean smirked at the expression on Sam's face. He'd had compliments before, but Sam was acting like it was a world-class blowjob.

"I never... I knew they were good, but I never thought it would feel like that."

Dean froze. He felt his jaw drop and he stared at Sam. "Don't... oh god please don't tell me that was your first--"

"I got flashes of it happening, but," Sam gave him the biggest goofiest grin, "I haven't actually physically had..."

His blood seemed to actually stop flowing, and Dean managed somehow to ask, "Sam, please tell me you've had sex before." He remembered his brother talking about girls -- always girls, never guys, and what the fuck was up with that? He'd talked about kissing, and hell, Dean had been the one to pay Crissy ten dollars to make out with a 13 year old Sam, and act like he was decent at it, just to get him started on the right foot.

But never had a blow job before? Hell, that was teenage sex act number two on the charts, right after... everything he and Sam had done yesterday.

"Of course I've had sex before," Sam replied in perfectly reasoned tones. "Yesterday."

There was no way. No fucking way. Dean stared at Sam, and saw innocence and sincerity and fuck, but his brother could pull off that look so well that Dean couldn't actually tell if he was yanking Dean's chain or not.

"Tell me you're joking," he said, his voice steady.

Sam rolled his eyes. "Dude, of course I'm joking! I lost my virginity back when I was 15 to Cindi Garrett, when we were living in Nebraska. Walked around with a huge grin on my face for the next week."

"Thank god," Dean breathed, relaxing with a sudden rush. Because if there was one thing a guy didn't want, it was to be the one to take his brother's virginity.

Dean stared at that thought in his head, and asked himself when he'd lost his mind.

"You are the first guy I've had sex with though," Sam continued helpfully.

Letting his head hit the pillow didn't help much, but it let him close his eyes and try not to think about that statement. He knew Sam was saying it to bug him, the same way Sam would mention casually that a dog had licked the top of Dean's soda can after Dean had taken another drink. True or not, it was all about the spit-take.

What scared him more than what Sam was doing to him was the feeling he had that he wanted to do this right. Slow and gentle, and when the fuck had he become a trashy romance novel?

He was supposed to be thinking about the fact his dad would never speak to him again, not about just how much he wanted to make Sammy's sexual experiences be good ones.

Sam leaned over and kissed him once, briefly, then bounced back up aggressively cheerful. "So showers then breakfast? You still want to go out for breakfast burritos?"

"I'm not going anywhere," Dean said, feeling a bit dazed. "You're going to get me food." He rolled onto his back and put his arm behind his head. A night's sleep had done his shoulder a lot of good, but he wasn't going to be testing it with heavy artillery for awhile, yet.

"You're not going to freak out or anything when I'm gone?" Sam asked, giving him a searching look.

"I'm not freaking out," Dean said, because it wasn't like he was going to admit it, if he was. He realised that Sam really might go down to Bert's Tacos and get them breakfast, and leave Dean lounging in bed.

He sat up and looked around for his jeans.

"What are you doing?"

"Putting pants on," Dean drawled. "It makes it easier to carry a wallet and extra ammunition."

"What happened to you're not going anywhere?" Sam leaned over the far side of the bed and came up with Dean's jeans, which he tossed to him.

"Like I trust you to remember the hot sauce," Dean replied, sliding his jeans on without bothering to look for underwear. He'd have to do laundry, soon, but not today and not tomorrow.

Sam bent over the side of the bed again, this time coming up with his own pants. "Give me a couple of minutes to go get changed and we can go," he said, as he slid them on and climbed over Dean to get out of the bed.

Dean very carefully did not cop a feel, or even stare at Sam's ass as it passed his nose by a few inches. He was grateful Sam put his sweatpants on before climbing over him, because otherwise he wasn't sure they'd make it out of the bedroom until June.

The grin Sam shot him over his shoulder as he was leaving the room told him that Sam knew it too.

It didn't take them long to grab showers and clean -- clean enough -- clothes, and head out to get breakfast. Bert's Tacos was one of the reasons Dean had talked dad into getting an apartment in this particular complex. He'd said it was because it was safe and cheap, but really he'd had one of the tamales that first day in town, and Dean had fallen head over heels in love.

He wished they served tamales before ten, but he would take a breakfast burrito and be content.

"We're going to have to do laundry soon," Sam observed as he settled into the passenger seat, his long legs and long arms as always making him look cramped in the space. "Maybe after breakfast...?"

Dean gave him a bright grin. "Thanks for volunteering." He started the car and, as always, hesitated a second as he listened to the motor catch. The thing sounded like it was made out of aluminum and he missed the low rumble of dad's truck.

Sam opened his mouth to protest, then closed it again with a shrug. "Whatever, dude."

"Don't use that smelly crap, either." Dean made sure to buy laundry detergent that didn't smell like flowers or rain or whatever the hell else it was they thought people wanted their clothes to smell like. Most artificial scents were just like wearing a neon sign to the spirits they hunted, saying "human here, come eat me!" But despite the fact he never bought it, once in a while Sam managed to bring back laundry that smelled like flowers, or some such shit.

Strangely, it was only ever Dean's clothes that smelled.

"And what are you going to be doing when I'm slaving away?" Sam asked.

Dean raised an eyebrow at him. "Eating burritos and watching soaps." He stretched a little, as though anticipating doing nothing but lounge on the couch. The GEO driver's seat was barely big enough for him as it was, though, and he scowled at it. "Maybe I'll putter."

Sam snickered. "Soaps huh? You watch Oprah too?"

With a sneer, Dean retorted, "Please. Do I look like an Oprah kinda guy?"

As though he would ever admit to it. And no way in hell would he admit it to his little brother.

He should call Jerry Springer, though. "Hey Jerry, I'm having sex with my brother...." Nah, they'd probably already done that one.

"You don't really look like a soaps kinda guy either, and yet..." Sam trailed off leadingly.

"I have to find out if Laura is carrying Jessie's baby, or if it's the evil twin of her dad's first cousin who got her drunk that night, which led to her miscarriage. Dude, you have no idea." He said it seriously, because despite the fact Sam would tease him for fucking years... well, he really did want to know who Laura was secretly in love with.

It wasn't like Dean had a lot to do while Sam was in school, anyhow. Taking care of the weapons and making sure the car was still running really didn't fill a whole day.

Sam was staring at him like he'd just sprouted horns or something. "You're serious. You're actually hooked on a soap."

He glanced over and gave Sam a sad, serious look. "You never knew, did you? Sam, I've been watching All My Children for ten years."

"You have not."

"You remember when you were eight, and we stayed with Mrs. Duncan for a few months? Dad was in the hospital with a couple broken legs? I was home sick one day and she was watching...." He shook his head as if at the memory. He'd really only been watching for a few months, but Sam didn't need to know that he really was hooked.

The look Sam was shooting him now was tinged with suspicion.

"Seriously, Sammy, why do you want to have that kind of life? It may be 'normal' but it's freaking strange." He paused, as though realising the same could be said for their lives already. "Well, except for 'Passions'."

Sam seemed to give the question serious thought. "It's not so much the normal bit as that... Most people don't know what we know. They're not scared all the time."

The sudden veer in conversation caught Dean off-guard; he nearly yanked the steering wheel of the car. "Are you telling me if you went to college and left all this, you wouldn't be scared?"

Sam was a long time in answering and when he did, it was in a voice barely above a whisper. "I think I'll always be scared."

Dean didn't mean to - had his brain kicked in sooner he wouldn't have done it. But his hand was out and taking a hold of Sam's. "Nothing bad will happen to you while I'm here, Sam."

He meant it -- even though he knew he couldn't control the world, or the things in it. But he did know he'd give everything he was to keep Sam safe.

"I know," Sam replied, squeezing his hand tightly. "That's not something I've ever doubted."

"Good." Dean nodded, then fought the urge to let go of Sam's hand and go back to pretending they didn't do this sort of thing. It was nice, for the moment, to let himself pretend they did.

He saw the sign for Bert's Tacos up ahead.

"We should get out of town for a few days," Sam said suddenly. "Go someplace fun."

Dean glanced over, then pulled his hand out of Sam's and put it back on the wheel, turning easily into the parking lot. He considered Sam's suggestion. He'd been thinking they would go meet up with dad, after Sam finished his exams and was free of school.

Now, though....

"Someplace fun?" It occurred to him that the only thing he knew about the local area was which places had recently been haunted, which places hadn't had a sighting in decades, and what spot just north should be avoided at all costs unless he had an army behind him.

"Yeah. Like an amusement park or something," Sam said. "Or... there's the lake just northeast of here, we could drive up for a day at the public beach..."

"You own swim trunks?" It slipped out before Dean could get control of his mouth -- because the idea of watching Sam lay around on a beach in nothing but a pair of Speedos was doing very bad things for his ability to get out of the car and walk up to the taco stand without being arrested for indecency.

Sam shrugged. "We could buy some."

Dean nodded, absently. If he hit Club 81 tonight, he could maybe score enough for them to go for a couple days, maybe get a motel room or whatever they had up there. There was no way they'd be able to afford something like a cabin on the lake, but a couple days hanging out, swimming, eating hot dogs and drinking beer and not killing anything evil?

Sounded like a hell of a plan to Dean.

"Let's get breakfast," he said, figuring the lady selling burritos had probably seen a guy sporting a hard-on before, if the three little kids who called her 'mama' were anything to go by.

Sam nodded and they got out of the car. They were halfway to the taco stand when Sam suddenly moved off in another direction. "I'll be right back," he tossed over his shoulder. "Order me whatever you're having."

"What?" Startled, Dean watched Sam walk off, wondering what insanity had possessed his brother this time. He saw another car parked several spots away, a brand new Jaguar, bright blue and shining so hard it hurt Dean's eyes. Sam walked up and spoke to the guy behind the wheel and Dean frowned. Who the hell did Sam know that drove a car like that?

He turned and stormed up to the taco stand, and ordered two burritos. Let Sam starve.

Then he sighed, and ordered two more.

He'd gotten the food and was heading back to the GEO by the time Sam finally returned, eyes sparkling with triumph. He tossed a set of keys to Dean. "I've got us a cabin for the weekend."

Catching the keys by reflex, Dean looked back at the car, and stifled the urge to go over and beat the crap out of the guy driving it. He shoved the bag of burritos at Sam. "How'd you manage that?" he growled.

Sam took the time to get out a burrito and unwrap it before answering. "It belongs to Alex's family." He nodded in the direction of the car and took a bite, having to chew for a moment before he could continue. "I know Alex from school -- we have some of the same classes. Anyway, their family has this cabin up on the lake. Supposed to be really luxurious too, with all the amenities. They used to go up there every summer." Another bite, another pause while he chewed and swallowed.

Dean just stared at him. Sam had never mentioned Alex before. And why the hell would this Alex be offering Sam the use of a luxury cabin?

He thought about all the favors he got, from both women and men, and knew exactly what it entailed. Dean shoved the ugly feeling that thought created -- telling himself he should be relieved that Sam had someone else to be involved with.

"You'll like this," Sam continued, oblivious to what Dean was thinking. "Two summers ago weird shit started happening. Things going missing and then turning up in the most unlikely places, problems with the power supply, weird noises, that sort of thing. Then his mother thought she saw a strange figure in her daughter's bedroom one night and it freaked her out so much that they left the next morning and haven't been back since."

Dean stood straight. "So it's a job. Anyone get hurt?" Whether or not Alex would be collecting his favor was irrelevant for the moment -- or so Dean firmly told himself. For now he had something more important to focus on.

A hunt.

"Nope. As these things go, it seems pretty benevolent. More like a little kid playing pranks than vengeful spirits out for blood. Sounds like it shouldn't be too hard to deal with." Sam grinned around a mouthful of burrito. "And for once we're going to get paid to do so. We get rid of it, we get the use of the cabin for every weekend this summer."

Nodding, Dean agreed that it sounded mostly harmless, though he knew better than to assume it would be easy. Then the rest of what Sam said sank in. "Every weekend?"

Which meant Sam wasn't thinking about getting back on the road.

Sam nodded and shrugged. "Well, every weekend we want it. Figured maybe we could even swing back this way occasionally after we leave, take breaks and all."

"Oh. Um. Okay." Dean felt like he'd been hit with a sledgehammer. Which was normal, for the Sam-shaped hammer in his life. "And Alex?"

"What about him?" Sam asked, looking confused.

"You, um..." Dean started to make a gesture with one hand then stopped himself. The taco lady's five year old girl was staring at them from the back door of the stand. "You know. You gonna be... heading up to the cabin with him, too?"

If anything the confusion on Sam's face deepened. "Why would I do that?"

"You know. In exchange for us using the place." Dean shrugged like it didn't bother him, though he couldn't quite fake being proud of his brother for turning on the charm, like Dean so often did.

Sam's eyes widened and the realization on his face was almost comical. "You think that I... whored myself out to get us the cabin?" he asked, his voice rising in pitch with offended disbelief.

"I wasn't going to say it like that," Dean protested. "It's called using your charm, and having fun along the way."

"I used my brain instead," Sam pointed out. "I find it works better. And besides, the only person I want to be having that kind of fun with is you."

Dean started to shrug off Sam's comment about brains versus good looks, when he realised what Sam was saying. A weekend at a luxury cabin, alone with Sam. And an unknown spirit, but that shouldn't be a problem for long.

Alone with Sam, at a cabin on a lake.

Stammering, Dean spoke without thinking, "Hey, don't knock it, it got me two thousand bucks off your car."

The eyes that Sam turned on him then were sad. "You're worth a lot more than that."

"Yeah, but the guy had to show a profit." Dean gave the GEO a head-shake. "I really wanted the Mustang, though."

"Dean?" Sam asked hesitantly. "Just how much... charm did you have to use?"

Raising an eyebrow, Dean gave his brother a look. "What the hell have we been talking about, Sam? I slept with the guy, gave him a couple of those blow jobs you liked so much, and I got a car we could afford."

He'd never minded that sort of thing -- hell, he liked sex, and he picked his partners with a modicum of discrimination. Most of the time he'd have done it anyhow. Getting something out of it was just bonus, and if it was something he needed, or that Sam wanted....

His stomach twisted, and he grabbed the bag of burritos out of Sam's hand, not feeling hungry but not about to let Sam eat them all. Not that Sam seemed to be eating any more. Instead he was staring off into the distance, expression closed and guarded.

Dean pulled out a burrito and unwrapped it; the smell was heavenly, but his stomach twisted again at the thought of taking a bite. Sighing, Dean wondered if hot sauce would help.

He put the burrito back in the bag, and walked around to the driver's side of the car. "Come on, we got things to do if we're gonna get this cabin cleaned."

Sam nodded and got into the car. He stayed silent until Dean had got in beside him and put the key in the ignition. "Dean?"

"Yeah, what?" Dean felt tired for some reason.

"That guy could've given you every car on his lot and he still wouldn't have paid what you were worth."

The funny feeling in his stomach had changed into something he wasn't sure he remembered ever feeling before. "He didn't have anything on his lot worth driving anyhow." Dean paused and rubbed his hand over the GEO's dash. "Not that you don't do a great job, sweetheart."

He heard a snort of laughter from beside him and turned his head to see Sam grinning at him, eyes warm with affection. "So do I have to be jealous of the car now, too?"

"I just don't want her throwing a rod because I said something stupid." He gave the dash another pat, just in case. Then he blinked and looked over, smiling. "You're jealous?" He preened a little, hamming it up to avoid thinking about what they were saying.


Dean smiled as smugly as he could without breaking his face, and reached out, stroking the dashboard gently. "She's such a fine car," he said, putting a bit of husk in his voice. He glanced over at Sam to see him swallow hard. "Makes me wanna... drive," he said, using his best bedroom tone. He shifted his hips a little, drawing Sam's attention to certain parts of his body.

Mentally, some part of him gave himself a huge fucking thump for flirting with Sam. Leading him on and... well, then, he'd already had sex with him, more than once. Maybe protesting that he would never do such a thing was futile.

Sam shifted uncomfortably in his seat and cleared his throat.

Dean glanced over, then started the car and pulled out of the lot. He licked his lips, slowly, and said, "Man, those burritos are really good, aren't they?"

Ignoring the fact he hadn't eaten his yet.

"Dean? Drive faster."

"Why, you got someplace to be?" He glanced sidelong at Sam, totally recognising the condition Sam was in. Dean smiled, charmingly. Somehow it didn't feel like it did, all those other times. Sam was the only one he'd ever had sex with that he'd-- Dean swallowed, and let himself finish the thought. The only one he'd loved, after all.

"Yeah." Sam was looking at him, eyes dark with want, and his voice was deep and growly in a way that went straight to Dean's cock. "Somewhere with you where we can get naked."

Dean found himself swallowing his comeback -- he couldn't be sure what it was he would have said, anyway. The way Sam was looking at him made him want to pull the car over to the curb and get naked right there.

Too bad the GEO wasn't big enough, not to mention the middle of the morning on a city street wasn't the best place to avoid getting arrested.

"Sammy?" he asked, casually.

"Yeah?" Sam growled.

"Are we gonna even need swim trunks?"


Dean had originally intended to be on the road by mid-afternoon. Plenty of time to do some research into the area, and the lake specifically, and pack for a weekend of not being on the job, for after.

Sam's jumping him as soon as they'd walked in the front door had delayed things a bit, and now it was early evening. They'd stopped at Cafe Bernito for dinner -- good food, cheap, and the girl bussing tables was good for slipping Dean a couple slices of pie for dessert. Then they finally hit the road out of town.

Sam was sitting beside him, humming along softly to the radio, one arm propped up on the open window, the wind blowing his hair crazily. He seemed to all but glow with happiness. He wanted to rib Sam -- tease the hell out of him, because it was a two hour drive and what the hell else was he gonna do? But as he looked over again and saw Sam's face, all Dean could think was how long had it been since he'd seen his brother so happy?

Sam looked over and met his eyes, smiling. "There's worse ways to spend a day," he observed.

"Like fixing a broken water pipe, mopping the laundry room, and re-washing some stranger's molding clothes just so we could get the laundry done before taking off?"

"At least nothing was trying to kill us." Sam's smile widened. "And it gave us an excuse to take a shower together."

"Sammy, Sammy, Sammy," Dean said with a 'tsk'. "Is that all you think about?"

He knew perfectly well what an 18 year old guy thought about -- pretty much the same thing a 22 year old guy thought about. But he was driving, and thinking about being in a shower with Sam, with soap and hot water and... crap. Yeah, that was why he hadn't wanted to think about it right that second.

Sam seemed to give the question some consideration before answering. "Yeah, pretty much. Least today."

"Today?" Dean asked, faking an incredulous tone. "And tomorrow, what, you'll go back to your Gameboy?"

"Nah," Sam said, shaking his head. "You're more interesting than Castlevania."

Dean gave him a wide-eyed look. "Wow, I really did get all the charm in the family, didn't I?"

"Don't let it go to your head," Sam advised.

"Why not? You let it go to yours." Dean glanced down to let Sam know which head he was referring to.

Dean took a quick mental step back and wondered why the hell he wasn't turning into a gibbering moron, given how badly he'd been freaking out just a day before. Well, they did have a job to take care of first -- he'd always been good about putting shit on hold while there were monsters to be destroyed.

At least, ever since he'd nearly let his brother get killed. Dean swallowed and shoved that back down in the back of his brain where it belonged.

"So what are you thinking about?" Sam asked, and Dean had a second of panic before he realised that it was just a natural progression of their conversation.

"I'm thinking about sex," he said easily.

Sam smirked. "Pot, kettle."

"When did I ever deny I thought about sex most of the time?" Dean shook his head. "Monsters, Metallica, and making out."

"The three 'm's?" Sam teased, smiling at him fondly.

"The perfect life philosophy. There's actually a fourth 'm', but... nah. You're too young, yet."

Sam just raised an eyebrow questioningly at him, it disappearing under his thick bangs.

Dean sighed like he was giving away one of his best secrets, then said, "Maturity."

It was the first 'm' word that he'd thought of, other than 'manmeat' and 'morbid.' Well, he realised, there was another word but... wow, did he not want to go there. Hard enough imagining what dad would do to him -- thinking about their mother was definitely not something Dean wanted to do right now.

There was a snort of amusement out of his little brother. "Yeah, you let me know when you grow into that one."

Dean flipped Sam off, and kept driving. One nice thing about the GEO's size, he thought a few minutes later, was how easy it was to reach over and goose his brother.

The downside of that being of course his brother could return the favor just as easily. Easier with those freaky long arms of his.

"Driving!" Dean shouted, trying half-heartedly to squirm away from Sam's fingers without driving them into the opposite lane.

"That's why I'm restraining myself to just pinching."

"That wasn't a pinch, that was taking a slice of my hide!" Dean waited until the oncoming lane was clear of traffic for a couple miles, then reached over and tried to push his hands past Sam's, to get in another pinch of his own. He didn't expect to be successful, but keeping Sam distracted would protect his own parts, for a few moments at least.

It quickly devolved into some kind of strange slapping fight that had them both laughing like loons.

"Dude, seriously, chill," Dean managed, some time later. His stomach hurt like hell, muscles aching, and he tried hard not to gasp for air. He still felt like laughing, but he couldn't remember exactly what they were laughing about.

Sam managed to compose himself, but then took one look at Dean and went off again.

"The hell is your problem?" Dean muttered, then he was grinning and fighting back laughter again. He saw a sign for the lake up ahead, and slapped his brother in the leg, hard. "Hey! Which exit do we take?"

"Uh..." Sam pulled out the written directions Alex had given him, still chuckling. "Second one, the one that goes to the far side."

"Five miles, great. You have the keys?" he asked, knowing full well that it was too late now if Sam didn't, but he figured it was a nice object lesson in being prepared, if Sam realised now that he'd forgotten them.

Not that he had any reason to think Sam wouldn't be prepared -- but hell, teasing his brother was a reflex, and one he didn't see any reason to stifle.

Sam reached into his pocket and pulled them out, holding them up for Dean's inspection, all without looking up from the directions he was looking at.

"And they warned the housekeeper we'd be there?" As far as he knew there was no housekeeper, but he was wondering how far he could go before Sam flipped him off.

"They have a cleaning service that comes in once a week -- Wednesdays. So there shouldn't be a problem with them."

Dean blinked. "They really have... dude, how rich are these people, anyway?"

"Pretty rich," Sam replied. "But Alex is cool. Doesn't use it to lord over anybody else or anything."

"No, no; that isn't what I mean. Sam, maybe you should ask this guy out. Or his sister, if he doesn't swing your way." He gave Sam the most exaggerated smirk he could, remembering the way his brother had closed up when he'd talked about trading affections for treats, before. Best to let Sam know upfront that he was only joking -- even if the idea of having a sugar daddy or sugar momma would make Dean's life a lot more fun.

Sam turned his head to study him thoughtfully. "You wouldn't have a problem with that?" he asked. "Me letting someone fuck me for money?"

Dean opened his mouth to say that if he got a decent car out of it, he was good with anything. Then he felt something entirely other than good, and he clamped his jaw shut.

He tried twice to unclench his jaw enough to say something.

"Yeah, thought so." He could hear the satisfied smirk in Sam's voice.

"Shut up." It wasn't the most eloquent of retorts, but it was all he could say that wasn't shouting things that he wasn't prepared to hear himself saying. Things like 'you belong to me' and 'no fucking way does anyone else get to have you, ever'.

Because that meant thinking about not stopping this, and... Dean shook his head, hard.

They fell into silence for a bit then, until they'd made the turn off and were heading down the road that would lead them to the cabin. Then out of the blue, Sam asked, "Do you want to fuck me tonight?"

"God dammit," Dean said, feeling Sam's words hit him like a blow to the stomach. Hell, even his knees shook, and Dean couldn't even look over at Sam, not with the images that were exploding in his mind. Like asking him did he want to breathe, because since the first time Dean had figured out that guys could do that sort of thing, he'd been working his way up to allowing himself that fantasy.

The one that always made him hide under the covers in shame after, and pray that no one could ever read his mind, or his face, and see what he'd been thinking.

"Is that a yes?" Sam asked, his voice getting softer, deeper, in that way that Dean already was associating with sex. "Because I think I'd like that. Been thinking about it all day, really." He shifted in his seat and one hand went down to adjust himself through his jeans.

Damn, but it was so completely not fair that Sam should be this...easy with it. Maybe that vision had warped his brain, but Sam was just talking like it was nothing.

He saw the cabin and yanked on the wheel, pulling the car up and parking. He didn't let go of the wheel right away, staring out at the cabin and the lake, beyond. He didn't move, didn't respond to what he knew was Sam's confused and curious look.

Finally, in a soft voice, he said, "First time I ever thought about doing that to you, I threw up for half an hour."

Sam reached over and touched his arm. Not in a sexual way, just connecting. "I'm sorry," he said softly. "It had to be hard wanting that, thinking you were in this alone..."

With a rough jerk, Dean shook off his brother's hand and yanked open the door. "Let's find out what's haunting this place."

He heard his brother sigh, but thankfully Sam didn't press the issue. "We better take a look around and unpack the car, then I'll take you through what I found in my research when you were doing the laundry."

"Great." Dean headed for the cabin, considering then rejecting going back to grab a shotgun just in case. From Sam's brief explanations earlier, it didn't seem like something that would need a good shooting -- which was really kind of too bad. He was suddenly in the mood to shoot things. He couldn't even kick in the door because Sam had the keys.

He tensed his shoulders for a moment, hoping the prickling feelings in his back would go away.

Sam followed him to the door, moving past him to unlock it when they got there. He glanced at Dean as he walked past, a small concerned frown turning his mouth down at the corners, but he didn't say anything or touch him.

"So where was the activity concentrated?" Dean asked, looking around the outside of the cabin and not seeing anything obvious, like a human skull or messages painted on the walls in blood.

He tried not to think about the fact he hadn't answered Sam's question. But fuck, what could he possibly say? Yes? No? Somebody please shoot me in the head so I don't have to answer?

"Upstairs," Sam said, nodding in the direction of a wrought iron spiral staircase in the center of the open area of the ground floor. He stepped into the place a bit further and turned around, obviously trying to see everything at once.

"Jesus." Dean shook his head as he headed for the stairs. This 'summer cabin' would house a family of twelve, full time. He glanced around at the decor -- not seeing anything that looked like a good reason a spirit might be hanging around. No strange tribal masks on the wall, no religious symbols carved in stone hanging the wrong side up.

It looked perfectly ordinary.

"I think Alex understated how much this place has," Sam commented, moving over to take a closer look at the home theatre system set up in the sunken living room area.

"Tell him we couldn't clean the place, and we can just move in." Dean smirked, but he knew there was no way. Not because Sam would never go for it, but because he'd been living in one place for fucking months and he was starting to feel like his feet were growing into the ground. The idea of taking up residence, even someplace as nice as this, gave him the creeps.

But still, he was glad he said it because it made Sam shoot him a quick smile, the first since they'd got out of the car. "That's a novel way of using a haunting."

Dean grinned, smugly. "And you thought you got the brains." He put his hand on the stair railing and felt the cold bite of iron -- at least no ghosts would be waiting to kick him down the stairs, with this much iron.

He hurried up the stairs to look around and find this critter.

The upstairs was just as elegant as the downstairs; the stairway let out into a hallway with wood floors and tasteful art on the walls. There were five doors leading off the hall -- two on each side and one at the very end.

Dean carefully walked up to the first door and paused. No strange sounds -- no sounds at all. No cold spots. No EMF meter, because that was in the back of dad's truck, currently someplace in Mississippi.

The first room was a guy's bedroom -- probably Alex. Clean and tidy and looking more like a younger kid's room than someone about to graduate high school. Well, then, Sam had said they hadn't been up here for a couple years. Maybe redecorating wasn't a big priority.

He left the room and went to the next door, on the other side of the hall. He opened the door and found pink everything inside.

So there was a sister. Dean turned to call down to Sam, and stopped.

Then he called out, "So, Sam? A strange figure?"

The figure stared back at him, its almost-face seeming to look right at him. Then it vanished.

"Yeah," Sam's voice came from a distance, but he was obviously heading towards Dean. "Alex said his mom saw it and his little sister." By the time he finished speaking he'd reached the door of the room Dean was in.

Dean looked over his shoulder and held his hand up. "About this tall? Kinda grey, humanoid but not human? Just stands there and doesn't say anything then vanishes?"

"You saw it?" Sam immediately scanned the room.

"No, I'm just talking out of my ass." Dean rolled his eyes. "Yes, moron, I saw it. It was standing right there," he pointed. There was no sign of it now, and Dean looked around the room for any signs of what might have triggered the appearance.

There was nothing that one wouldn't expect to find in a young girl's room -- lots of pink and ruffles, dolls and slightly out-of-date boy band posters. There were shelves covered with all sorts of collectibles: dolls, figurines and a bunch of rocks. Sam had moved past him, and was checking the spot Dean had indicated, waving his hand through the air and kneeling to check for any physical evidence.

"So what did you find out about the lake?" Dean asked. "I'm guessing you didn't come across anything like a local legend about a strange figure that appears in girl's bedrooms."

"Nope," Sam said, sounding slightly distracted as he continued poking around. "No history of anything bad happening in the lake or the cabin or the ground it's on. No burial grounds, curses, or anything like that. It's a pretty recent development too -- before they built here it was nothing but nature on this side of the lake."

"So, maybe something moved in?" Dean thought about all the spirits who could, or would, move their territory. The list was short, as most things tended to stay either in a fixed location, or were fixed to an object. He hadn't recognized the figure, which ruled out half a dozen of the spirits who roamed freely.

Fixed to an object.

Dean turned his head and looked at the pile of rocks.

Out of the corner of his eye he saw Sam look in the same direction. "Or was brought in," Sam suggested.

"It can't be that easy?" Dean looked over at his brother, trying not to smile. If the sister had been collecting rocks, and had grabbed one that belonged to a rock spirit, then the spirit would have followed -- wanting her rock back.

"The law of averages, occasionally one of them would have to be that easy." Sam shrugged. "Maybe we're due?"

"Don't talk like that," Dean said, grinning. "If you jinx us, I am going to be seriously pissed off." He walked over to the rocks, and looked them over. "Got any idea which one it could be?"

"Guess it's too much to ask for the right one to be labeled, huh?" Sam moved over to stand beside him, leaning over to take a closer look.

"Maybe you can point it out?" Dean asked the room, not sure the spirit could hear them or would bother responding. He waved his hand over the rocks, waiting for any sign. He caught the look Sam was giving him, and flipped his brother off just on principle.

They waited silently for a few minutes, but nothing happened. "There's one way to make sure we get the right one," Sam finally said.

"Put 'em all back." Dean nodded. He picked up one of the smaller rocks, and turned it over. "Looks like they came from the lake." The rock was smooth and rounded, worn by immersion rather than wind.

Sam grinned at him. "Your arm feel good enough to do some pitching?"


"Oh, man. That one sucked." Dean watched the ripples spread from the rock he'd just thrown -- thrown like an eighty-year-old arthritic woman. He'd tried throwing with his other hand, and couldn't get the distance he knew he was capable of -- much more than his brother, which was the important part.

Half of the rocks were back in the lake, now, and Dean was having an extremely poor showing. The way Sam was cackling made him want to....

Well, maybe after they were done, he'd dump his little brother in the lake.

"I wasn't going to say anything, but..." Sam began then cracked up again. He reached into the bag of rocks and grabbed another one, sending it gracefully arcing over to land in the lake a good 20 feet further than Dean's had.

"Yeah, if you pick the small ones," Dean groused. He grabbed another rock, turned a little, then let it fly with as much power as he could.

Then remembered why he hadn't wanted to do that. He managed not to curse out loud, but at least his rock went as far as Sam's last.

"Idiot." Sam's voice was affectionate.

"The day I can't beat my little brother at rock throwing is the day they push my ass into the retirement home -- and shoot me."

Sam's expression changed, the smile slipping from his face.

"Seriously, Sam -- sitting around all day with the only thing to look forward to is what flavor pudding they serve? I would shoot myself."

"Okay, can we stop talking about you getting shot, please?" Sam asked plaintively, rubbing at his forehead with one hand. "Really don't need the accompanying picture show."

"Picture show, what are you--" Dean stopped, realizing he was probably shutting up just a little too late. He turned and threw another rock into the lake, not even trying for more than far enough away they didn't get splashed. He glanced over at the serious -- no, haunted expression on his brother's face. "You, uh, saw me get shot?" he asked.

"Yeah." Sam threw another rock out in a violent motion; it went further than any of them had before. "One of the times it was me shooting you."

The words shocked him. Dean stared -- but yeah, his brother was serious. "Was I possessed? Or... you were?"

Sam frowned. "Me, I think. Sort of. I don't know." Another rock sailed out over the water.

Dean looked at his brother; it was obvious how much it was bothering him. Well, of course -- Dean mentally smacked himself on the head. Even though he could easily think of several good reasons why Sam would have to shoot him, and it be the right thing to do -- he didn't think Sam was thinking much farther than the image of shooting his brother.

He tried to think of something he could demand in repayment. Jostle his brother out of his mood, make him smile again. But the first thing that came to mind was asking for a blow job -- and while he knew Sam would go for it, he wasn't entirely sure he was ready to treat this thing between them so casually.

"You're buying dinner," he said, instead.

Startled, Sam looked at him. "What?

"You fucking shoot me, you can at least buy me dinner." He made a disgusted sound, and shook his head.

It took a few seconds, but finally he saw Sam's shoulders relax slightly and the ghost of a smile touch his lips. "I suppose that's fair."

"I want a steak," Dean said, firmly. Not that he didn't figure it would be him paying the check, in the end. Not unless Sam's Mrs. Eriks was working at the restaurant they'd passed on the way in.

"Steak? It wasn't like I killed you," Sam protested. "Just a flesh wound."

Dean gave him a pout. "My flesh wound isn't worth a steak? My own brother wounds me, and I don't get steak and garlic mashed potatoes, and apple pie?"

"Your own brother had a vision of shooting you. I suppose I could have a vision of buying you a steak dinner..."

Dean flipped him off, and threw another rock into the lake. "I think I have a vision...."

Sam picked up another rock and threw it. "This should be good," he said dryly.

"No, no, you'll like this." He walked over to Sam, smiling. He let his smile change, just a little comehither. He got his hands on Sam's arms. Though Sam still looked wary, Dean could feel how he let his guard down when he touched him. Trusting.

He pulled Sam close with one quick movement, letting their bodies slam together. Then he was lifting, twisting his hips, and Sam was sailing through the air, and landing with a huge splash in the lake. He reached down and threw the bag with the last of the rocks in after him.

Then Dean ran.

Sam's howl of outrage followed him, as did, soon enough, the sound of Sam's footsteps chasing him. Dean looked over his shoulder to see his sopping brother with his head down running full out after him -- and gaining. Catching him looking, Sam yelled, "You are so dead when I catch you!"

Dean laughed and concentrated on running as fast as he could. He had no idea if Sam would catch him -- they'd been pretty matched for speed for a long time, until Sam hit thirteen and finally figured out how to use those freakishly long legs of his. But Dean was headed towards the woods surrounding the lake, and he had a lot more experience dodging things that wanted to kill him than Sam did.

Dean darted around the side of the cabin and tried not to think about the last time he'd seen those long legs, naked and wrapped around his own.

He blamed that image for making him trip on a rock -- and shouldn't the rock spirits be being nice to him, now? He went sprawling onto the ground, catching himself and feeling the bite of dirt and gravel in the palms of his hands -- two seconds before he was flattened by the weight of his brother landing on him.

His very wet brother, who immediately plastered himself close, transferring as much of the wet as he could. A second later, Sam's fingers were also digging into his ribs in an all too familiar move. One that Sam kept using because it kept working. Damn it.

He tried to flip them over, get on top of Sam and try to get himself free, but Sam seemed extra determined to keep him pinned where he was. Dean flung an elbow back, not caring if he caught Sam full on the chin or not because fuck he'd got his fingers on Dean's ribs and it was so completely not fair that Dean was ticklish and Sam was not.

He ignored the protest in his shoulder, telling himself he'd happily break his collarbone completely if it meant getting Sam to-- "Stop tickling me!" he shouted, pissed off and knowing it would only egg Sam on.

"Dude, you threw me in the lake," Sam retorted, emphasising his words with jabs of his fingers in-between the tickling.

"You shot me!" Dean yelled back. "And you wouldn't even buy me a steak dinner!" He wriggled harder, trying to get away. Things were getting desperate, because Sam didn't seem to be going anywhere -- and part of his body was happily ignoring the shooting pains in his palms and shoulder, and was focusing on the fact Sam was lying on top of him, holding him down.

Including the fact that the same parts of Sam's body seemed to be pretty happy about it, too.

"It was a vision. You going to hold me responsible for every freaking thing I see?" The tickling was easing up just a little, but the light caresses that replaced it weren't really much better for Dean's peace of mind. Nor was the way Sam's hips were rocking ever so slightly against him.

"Depends," Dean said, then gasped. Tried not to think about how perfectly positioned Sam was, and how all he had to do was yank his jeans down and Sam could fuck him. He heard himself whimper, and clamped his jaw down too late to stifle the embarrassing noise.

"Depends on what?" Sam asked, leaning over Dean and speaking directly into his ear, so close that Dean could feel his brother's hot breath against his skin.

He had no idea what he'd been saying. He didn't bother trying to remember, not with Sam still pressing down on him. He could feel Sam's erection pressed against his ass. His hips jerked, and he wanted so badly to just shove himself backwards, rub his ass on Sam's cock and...

Sam covered him with his body even more thoroughly, sliding his hands along Dean's arms until he could entwine their fingers. He rocked his hips against Dean, his warm breath on Dean's neck sending shivers down his spine.

"Getting...me..." Dean gasped and squeezed his fingers tight around Sam's.

"Yeah." The word was more air than voice and what voice there was was deep and growly. Sam's hips rocked harder against Dean, settling into a rhythm. "I am."

Dean grinned, despite the fact he was facing the ground. "Fucking soaked," he finished. As though the sound of Sam's growl hadn't gone straight to his cock and jabbed him, like a live wire. As though he weren't thinking of ways to make Sam sound like that again.

The breathy chuckle Sam puffed against his ear wasn't a bad alternative either. "That too," Sam agreed, not stopping anything he was doing.

He thought about rallying for another complaint -- the lake water was cold and smelled, but it occurred to him that Sam probably had a much better idea of just how cold and smelly the lake was.

Maybe he should concentrate on making his brother think of him fondly, rather than with any sense of revenge.

Then Sam pushed against him, hard, and Dean's legs fell open, and he thought that maybe he should have considered pulling down his jeans. "Oh god, god...." Dean let his head fall, banging it against his forearm, and pushed up on his knees a little, giving Sam a better angle.

He heard the catch in his brother's breath as Sam reacted, and another one of those sinful chuckles. "Nope, just Sam."

"Real original," Dean said, trying hard to not sound breathy and too aroused to talk. He didn't think he was succeeding, and -- damn. He wriggled one hand under his body and tried to squeeze his hand inside his jeans.

Only to have Sam knock his hand away and replace it with his own, pressing hard against Dean's denim covered erection.

He couldn't stop himself from crying out, some wordless, nearly-mindless thing that made him glad they were alone. Hell, they'd better be alone or the neighbors were going to get their money's worth of free porn. He shoved his cock against Sam's hand, pushed his ass against Sam's cock, and had a second to wish he'd got his jeans off before --

Dean shouted, and came, hard.

Sam came a moment later, collapsing on him, driving them both back to the ground. Grunting at the impact, Dean gave the sound an extra oomph. He laid still for a second, then nudged Sam with the entire backside of his body, lifting them both up an inch or two.

"Oof," he said clearly, though he closed his eyes and thought about staying where he was for awhile.

Sam grunted something unintelligible in response, but didn't actually move except to nuzzle lazily at the back of Dean's neck.

"Fucking heavy," Dean complained, though he didn't really feel like throwing his brother off. Not with Sam's mouth on his skin, doing things that made his cock try to forget he'd just come.

Sam snorted and began humming something. After a few seconds Dean recognised it as He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother.

Dean growled, and put his hands flat on the ground and started to shove Sam off his back, dump his ass on the ground. The sharp pain in his collarbone exploded, and he fell back onto the ground, chest and cheek in the dirt. He closed his eyes and lay still, waiting for the pain to die away.

"Dean?" The weight on his back disappeared and then hands were gently -- but not gently enough -- turning him over.

"Fuck!" The pain shot through his shoulder, down into his spine. He didn't try to move, letting his brother settle him onto his back. He'd felt it when he'd lifted Sam up -- not that throwing him into the lake hadn't been worth it.

But now he was wishing he'd just pushed him.

"Collarbone?" Sam asked, running light fingers over Dean's shoulder and chest that were nonetheless too hard.

Dean winced at the touch, caught himself from flinching away because that movement hurt like hell, too. "Don't touch it," he snapped.

Sam's lips pressed together in clear displeasure, but he didn't stop his prodding immediately. "Well, I don't think you've re-broken it," he said, finally pulling back, thank god. "But you've definitely set yourself back some."

"It's not broken," Dean told him, not trying to hide his irritation. He knew what a broken bone felt like. This was just...setting himself back, some. He got his good arm behind him and pushed, struggling to sit up without using his right shoulder at all.

Sam immediately moved to help him, knowing exactly what he needed to do to keep the jostling to a minimum. It wasn't the first time he'd had to do this sort of thing, after all. He waited until Dean nodded that he was balanced all right in the sitting position before letting go. Then Sam took off the flannel shirt he was wearing and began turning it into a makeshift sling. "This will do until we get back to the house and the first aid kit."

"I don't need--" Dean began, and shut up at a look from his brother. He made a face, anyhow. "It's wet."

"Whose fault is that? Besides, you're a little damp around the edges yourself." He helped Dean put the sling on and was obviously trying to be as gentle as possible, but Dean still had to bite his lip against the pain of moving.

"Your fault," Dean said, confidently. As confident as he could sound, what with catching his breath every time his shoulder moved. When the sling was finally tied, and the weight taken off his shoulder, Dean closed his eyes and leaned his head against Sam.

He felt his brother's fingers at the nape of his neck, rubbing in small circles. It was... soothing. He rested there for another moment, rallying himself to stand up. He knew it was going to hurt like a bitch, but he couldn't exactly stay sitting outside on the ground all night, either.

He gave himself another moment, staying where he was, before leaning away.

"Up to trying to stand?" Sam asked, still being all solicitous and not saying 'I told you so.' Yet, anyway.

"Sure, let's give it a whirl. Always did like living dangerously." He took a deep breath as Sam moved, wrapping his arms around Dean.

Standing up wasn't nearly as much fun as he could have wished, given that he ended up leaning his entire body against Sam. Careful of the sling, Sam wrapped his arms around him and hugged him, and showed no signs of wanting to let go any time soon.

"You're still wet," Dean complained. Then he shivered; the breeze was hitting him just hard enough to chill his own clothes where they'd gotten wet. Which meant Sam was probably freezing. He stepped back, and looked at his brother. "Let's get inside." They both needed to dry off and put on clean, dry clothes.

"Sounds like a good plan," Sam said, releasing Dean, but keeping one arm around his waist for support as they started walking. They'd made it about halfway back when Sam blurted, "I'm sorry you're hurting but I'm not sorry that I... we... y'know."

Surprised, Dean looked at him, raising one eyebrow in an exaggerated expression of 'what the hell is wrong with you now?' "That we... threw rocks in the lake? Talked about dinner?"

Hell, if his little brother couldn't say it.... Dean swallowed. Then again, who was he to talk? He could barely let himself think it, and he'd done it four times now.

"I'm not sorry that I pounced you and then we humped like rabbits," Sam replied, voice stronger. "Though okay, I'm a little sorry we didn't get our pants off again..."

"I'm cold, wet, and sticky," Dean said, as they reached the door. He made no move to help as Sam juggled him and getting the door open. He sniffed, and said sadly, "Sticky pants."

Then he snickered. That would never stop being funny.

"Shut up."

"Sticky pants," he repeated, and let Sam drag him inside. He leaned against the wall as Sam closed and locked the door behind them. "We'd better salt the place if we're staying," Dean said. "Sticky pants."

"What are you, five?" Sam asked in exasperation, already pulling his soaked t-shirt over his head and dropping it where he stood.

Dean's mouth dropped open to reply, but all he could think was, damn.

Sam toed off his sneakers and was starting to undo his jeans when he looked up and saw Dean staring at him. He froze for a few seconds then a slow smile crept across his face. "Feeling better I see."

His shoulder still hurt like hell, but Dean didn't mind. Some painkillers and a comfortable bed, and he'd be great. Especially with this sort of view...

Dean looked away, at the floor. He shouldn't... shouldn't be doing this.

"Hey," Sam said softly, moving into his line of sight, stooping slightly to look up at him. "You're allowed to look."

"Yeah, I just...." He couldn't meet Sam's eyes, glancing over to look at anything but. He caught sight of the kitchen, through the end of the short hallway.

Crap. So they'd forgotten one small detail.

"I don't suppose they left any food from the last time they were here?" Assuming the cleaning service had got rid of the perishable stuff, did he really want to eat nothing but canned goods that had been sitting for two years?

Sam followed his gaze, opened and shut his mouth a couple of times without saying anything then sighed and ran a hand through his hair. "I'll make a supply run once we get you all fixed up and settled."

"'Settled'? You make it sound like I'm an invalid. Come on, we can make a quick check and see if our rock spirit is gone, then head back towards the gas station." He'd seen the sign -- gas, groceries, fishing licenses. But he hadn't taken the hint.

"Shouldn't take me too long to drive there and back," Sam said, moving over to where they'd dropped their bags and dug in the duffel until he pulled out the first aid kit and clean outfits for them both. "Come on, we can get cleaned up in the bathroom upstairs and check for the spirit on the way."

Dean noticed how Sam seemed to be ignoring the part where he wasn't an invalid. But he followed Sam, letting him carry everything, and once they hit the stairs he found his nose about five inches away from Sam's ass.

He stopped, and once Sam had got a few steps up, continued up the stairs at a safer distance.

Sam paused when they reached the hallway at the top of the stairs. "Shower?" he asked. "Or spirit checking?"

"Let's check the sister's bedroom first, huh?" Dean hoped it was gone, because the idea of a hot shower -- a place as luxurious as this one probably had one hell of a nice shower. He'd be willing to bet the hot water didn't run out after fifteen minutes.

"I'll do it," Sam said moving past Dean and back down the hallway.

Sighing, Dean let him go. He headed towards the other end of the hall, towards what he figured would be the master bedroom. The best shower would be there, he reasoned. Biggest bathroom, biggest bed--

Dean swallowed, and concentrated on finding the shower.

The bedroom was, indeed, huge. The first door he tried was a walk-in closet; the second door opened onto a bathroom nearly as big as their kitchen, back home. He walked in, staring at the enclosed shower -- big enough for four. The glass doors weren't frosted at all, which meant anyone outside would get a clear view.

"Oh, hell yeah."

Dean reached up for the sling, trying to pull it over his head, and bit back a curse as his shoulder got pulled the wrong way. He tried again to grab the edge of the sling without jostling his shoulder too much.

"Dean?" Sam called from the hallway.

"Bathroom! In fact, you can just find me here for the rest of the weekend." He finally got the freaking sling off, and dumped it onto the floor with a wet squelch. Toeing his shoes off, he had to put one hand on the wall for balance. Still, he couldn't take his eyes off of that shower.

He'd be willing to bet this shower had water pressure.

Sam appeared in the doorway, already talking. "No sign of the spirit. Looks like we got it.... wow."

"Great, wonderful, perfect. I'll be here if you need me." He pulled off his T-shirt and dumped it on top of Sam's flannel shirt-cum-sling. "Have fun at the store."

"Yeah," Sam snorted, "like that's going to happen. You, dude, are going to have to share."

"I can safely say there is enough room in there for both of us. I bet they have one of those double head things, so we don't have to take turns standing under the spray." Dean fumbled with his jeans, trying not to use his right hand any more than necessary.

Sam made an impatient sound, dumped the clothes and first aid kit he was carrying on the vanity, and walked over to him. "Here," he said, pushing Dean's hand away and undoing his jeans himself.

"Careful!" Dean didn't actually try to move away. Sam's hands weren't exactly cold -- and weren't exactly unwelcome. Then he felt really stupid, because it only then occurred to him why Sam was intent on sharing the shower with him. "One of us will break his neck," he warned.

"From me undoing your jeans? I hate to break it to you, Dean, but I think you might be suffering from delusions of grandeur." Sam's eyes glinted with humour.

"No. From--" He nodded towards the shower.

Sam's dimple appeared as his lips curved up. "Feeling adventurous are you?"

"No! I thought...you...." Dean felt his cheeks flush as he realised maybe Sam hadn't meant sex in the shower. He stepped away from his brother, knocking his hands away from Dean's waist. "I've got it." He shoved his jeans down, feeling stupid and off-balance.

Sam held his hands up. "Okay." He stepped back and undid his own jeans.

He wanted to snap at Sam to stop being so fucking accommodating. Instead, he turned his attention away from Sam undressing, and went over to the shower. The door came open with a soft click, and he stepped inside. It smelled faintly of cleanser, but nothing too powerful.

Of course there was no shampoo or soap. Well, he'd be happy to stand under the shower and get clean through the sheer power of friction.

Which made his brain think of Sam, naked, in the shower with him. "Goddammit," he whispered.

The shower door opened and Sam slipped in behind him. "We forgot the soap," he said, resting one hand on Dean's back.

"There's some in my bag," Dean said. His duffel was always packed for traveling, the toiletries bag always fully stocked because you never knew when a motel would be too cheap to hand out even tiny bottles of almost-shampoo. But going to get them would mean leaving the shower, and Dean had the water on, now, and dear god it was already warm.

He closed his eyes and leaned into it. Sometimes, once in a very great while, he had stayed someplace that had a decent shower. Where the water was hot and didn't turn cold when someone upstairs flushed the toilet. Where the water pressure didn't feel like someone was spitting on you.

Dean ducked his head fully into the spray, and figured what the hell, who needed soap or shampoo.

"The soap can wait," Sam said a moment later, his voice slightly husky, having moved under another spray. "With water like this..."

There really was room for both of them under the spray. Not that Sam's arm wasn't touching his, and Dean could feel the presence of his brother in the shape of the spray cascading around him. Dean swallowed, and tried to focus on the hot water. How good it felt, warming up every inch of his body until, perversely, he shivered and goose bumps flared all over his body.

One of Sam's hands touched his back again gently. "Feeling better?"

"Yeah." His shoulder was hurting less, the heat doing its job of loosening the muscles. He knew better than to try anything athletic -- like throwing Sam into the lake -- again, but for now he felt pretty decent.

Sam's hand on his back was making him feel more than just decent, however. And if anyone looked down, they'd get an eyeful of just how more than he felt.

"Good." Sam's hand stroked lightly up and down Dean's spine. "I don't like it when you're hurting."

Dean made a noise, sort of strangled and questioning and encouraging, all at once. Except they really would break their necks, and how the hell would they explain this to the paramedics? Fake names to hide that they were brothers, but then Alex would know and--

Dean jerked away from Sam. That damnably familiar sensation burning in the pit of his stomach was back. Need, arousal, fear, shame, all coiled together until it had its own special name: Sam.

It didn't matter how often Sam said it was okay. It couldn't. It....

Had to.

Sam, for once, didn't push it, and let Dean move away. "If you can handle yourself, I'll go grab some food and other supplies."

"Yeah, I'm good." Dean didn't feel like cracking wise about handling things -- though he knew that as soon as Sam was out of the cabin, he'd either have to jerk off, or turn the water all the way to cold.

And really, cold showers never worked.

Sam hesitated, then nodded and opened the shower door. "I'll be back as soon as I can."

"Yeah." Dean nodded, vaguely, and closed his eyes as he ducked his head under the spray. Maybe he'd just stand here until everything he owned shriveled.

There was a pause, then Sam's fingers lightly touched the back of Dean's neck, there and gone before he stepped out and left.

For a moment, Dean didn't move at all, except for the way he couldn't stop shivering at the ghost of Sam's touch. Then he turned the water hotter, and let it burn into his skin.

After jerking off in the shower, and toweling off, Dean ignored the clothes that Sam had left out for him and instead wrapped himself in two of the hugest, softest, whitest towels he'd seen in his life before heading downstairs. He found the remote to the TV and switched it on, then settled in to wait for Sam. The noises and images from the TV were enough to almost but not quite distract him.

What the hell was he doing? What was he going to do? He and Sam...

He'd been fantasizing about having sex with his brother for two years. He'd hated it, loved it, and despite all the partners he'd had in his life, he'd never wanted any of them the way he wanted Sam.

Dean rubbed his head and wished he knew why he'd lost his mind. Or how, so he could do something about finding it again.

He knew Sam was waiting for him to stop freaking out. It was perfectly clear what Sam wanted from him: every single time, Sam had said yes. He'd assured Dean that he wanted it, that he knew Dean wanted it, that it was all right and okay and nothing at all wrong with what they were doing.

Well, of course there was, but Dean wasn't certain that social disapproval was all that damning.

He knew what Sam wanted to do this weekend. Why they were up at this cabin, alone. Had it been anyone else on the planet, except for Doug Handerson and maybe Doug's sister Trish, then Dean would have said hell yes and stocked up on condoms on the way out here.

But this was his brother. And as much as Dean wanted to, he couldn't....

The trouble was, Dean didn't want to stop. He'd told Sam, warned him that if he ever found out what it felt like to hold him, kiss him, then he wouldn't be strong enough to stop. Sam had acted like that was a good thing, but it was like he didn't know or care about all the reasons why they shouldn't be doing this.

Dean leaned back on the couch, and propped his feet up on the coffee table. Stared at the TV for a minute, but nothing filtered past the thought of Sam kissing him.

He wanted to kiss Sam again. Wanted to hold him, and look his fill, and wanted to strip him down and fuck him. Dean groaned, closing his eyes. He told himself to stop thinking of it, stop imagining Sam underneath him, naked and writhing and begging him.

Gasping, Dean squeezed his eyes closed tighter, but that just made the images sharper. He opened his eyes again and stared at the TV screen. Some chick was screaming at some guy, but he couldn't tell if she was angry, happy, or possessed.

All he had to do was say yes. Sam would do it, and Sam would tell him they could do it again. Dean could have exactly what he'd been wanting....

When had he ever gotten what he wanted? Dean glared at the TV, an old familiar feeling surfacing. Bitter at the way he'd always lost -- or more often, never got -- what he'd wanted. Trading it in for dad's hunt, for Sam, for lack of time and funds and anyone to help him.

And here Sam was telling him he could have this.

Only trouble was, dad would kill him. Literally, kill him for doing this to Sam. No matter Sam would get in dad's face and take the blame, or at least demand to share it. Dad would throw down the 'you're older, you know better' card and Dean would have no way to disagree. He did know better, he knew dad would hate him for doing this. For taking this...one thing that he wanted.

Maybe the thing that he wanted the most.

Dean felt his eyes burn, and tried to shove the anger down. It was wrong, and it was bizarre and it wasn't normal, and maybe if Dean had tried harder he could have uncovered what psychosis he was deflecting into this attraction he had for his brother.

But what he felt, what he'd been feeling for so long, was that he loved Sam. He was aroused by the sight of him, by the thought and act of having sex with him.

He wanted Sam, and it simply wasn't fair that he should have to give his brother up.

He knew what the next logical thought was. What would make this okay -- make it possible to contemplate saying yes to Sam when he got back? He knew what the biggest thing was: Just don't let dad find out.

If Dean let himself imagine that dad would never know...could he do it? Certainly Sam wanted to, and... didn't that make it easier?

He'd always tried to give his brother whatever he wanted. Dean snorted to himself -- within reason, of course. There had been that whole year Sam had demanded a motorcycle, despite the fact he'd only been eight and there was no way in hell they could have afforded even a dirt bike.

But... maybe this was within reason. Lost weekends like this, where they could get away and no one would ever have to know.

Dean glanced at the front door, as though Sam were going to walk through it in response to Dean's thoughts. If he did walk through.... Dean imagined just going to him, and kissing him. An easy enough fantasy -- one he'd had for so long. The difference now was that he knew what Sam's mouth tasted like, knew what his tongue felt like against his own.

Resting his head on the back of the couch, Dean stared at the door. Sam would smile and his eyes would light up in that way that made Dean want to touch his face and lose himself, drowning in the depths of Sam's eyes and the heat of his body.

Choking on a laugh, Dean wrapped his left arm around his body. He was insane.

But what he wanted, right now, was for Sam to be here.

Which maybe was the answer Dean was looking for.


It was a little less than an hour later when Sam got back and by then Dean had stopped glancing at the door every couple of minutes -- he was down to doing it every five.

Sam came in during one of the minutes when Dean was pretending not to be waiting so he missed the sight of his brother struggling to get the door open while loaded down with a number of what looked like heavy bags, but he did catch the sight of him staggering in towards the kitchen to put them down.

"Did you know this TV gets 412 stations?" he called out. Dean levered himself off the couch, and headed for the kitchen.

"Wow." Sam had dumped the bags on the counter and turned to look at Dean. Dean saw his eyes widen a little and dart down at his body before returning to his face. "You're not dressed."

Dean looked down at himself. The towel around his waist went practically to the floor, and the one around his shoulders was only hanging open in the front. He shrugged with his left shoulder. Then he looked past Sam to the bags. "Did you get any painkillers?" He grabbed one and dragged it across the counter towards him, to look.

In it there were assorted munchies and a smaller plastic bag, which on closer inspection turned out to contain a couple of steaks.

"Yeah." Sam dug into another bag and pulled out a box of extra strength ibuprofen and handed it over. "Is your shoulder really bad?"

"You got steaks?" Dean grabbed them, and pulled them out. Good sized ones, and his mouth was already watering. "Huh? Oh... it's not too bad. I just... won't say no to some pharmaceutical intervention. Since I couldn't find any beer." He took the ibuprofen from Sam and tore the box open, unscrewed the thankfully not child-proof cap, and shook out a few pills.

"Someone was dropping hints about wanting a steak dinner." Sam grinned and dug out a can of soda and handed it over for Dean to take the pills with.

"Someone was dropping hints about not actually providing a steak dinner." Dean took the can, tossed the pills back and swallowed. Then he opened the can and took a drink. "Seriously, dude, 412 channels. I need a TV in the shower and I could be set for life."

"A man of simple desires," Sam teased. He went back to unloading the groceries and Dean saw an inordinately large amount of food make its way from the bags into cupboards and the fridge.

"Um...Sam, did you have one of dad's credit cards?" He was pretty sure he didn't; Sam didn't look old enough to get away with not showing a form of ID, and they didn't have any for him that matched any names for the cards they'd got.

"There was this complete asshole at the store. More than half drunk. He pushed his way in front of this little old lady, yelled at the cashier and then drove off in this huge penis substitute-I-mean-hummer." Sam cleared his throat and coughed. "But not before I lifted his wallet."

Dean stared at his brother, shocked. Then he burst out laughing. "Sammy! Sammy... you lifted his wallet?" He clapped his hand on Sam's shoulder. "I'm so proud!" He grinned, wide as he could, then touched his fingertip to his eye. "I could cry."

Sam looked a little uncomfortable under the praise, but there was also a shy pleasure showing in his eyes. He shrugged. "He deserved it. He was a total jerk."

"I didn't know you could still lift a wallet -- didn't you stop that when you were thirteen?" Dean kept grinning.

Another shrug and Sam turned back to his unpacking. "Doesn't seem that big a deal anymore."

"Especially if it means we eat steak!" Dean picked up the meat and took it to the fridge. He took another swig of soda, and realised he hadn't seen any beer. Good as the ibuprofen was, it took awhile to kick in -- and beer kicked in immediately. "Did you get my apple pie?"

Busy putting more munchies in a cupboard, Sam just shot him the finger.

Dean just took another swallow of the soda, then realised he'd finished it. Well, it wasn't like he'd expected any pie -- he hadn't been expecting steaks, either, so he told himself to shut up and be grateful.

"You wanna see if we can find a game or something on TV?" he asked, in a neutral tone that hid his disappointment.

"Sure." Sam stood and gestured at the remaining bag. "I picked up Chinese for tonight. Figured we could cook the steaks tomorrow." He went about grabbing utensils and a couple more sodas. "What does one watch when one has 412 channels?"

Dean coughed. "I have no fucking clue. I couldn't figure out how to use the remote."

Sam stopped what he was doing and just stared at him.

He shrugged, trying for nonchalance and pretty sure he was failing. "I think it was Korean."

Now Sam was frowning slightly. "If you couldn't change the channel, how do you know there's 412 of them?"

"I don't, I just know there was a lot of them, but I couldn't actually get to any of them." Dean picked up the bag of Chinese take-out Sam had left on the counter and headed back towards the living room. Hopefully Sam had remembered to get two boxes of rice -- he didn't want to share, but of course he would if Sam had forgot.

"Maybe there's 412 channels in Korean," Sam suggested helpfully, following with the utensils and sodas.

"That'll be nice," Dean said, sarcastically. "I was hoping to brush up on my hwa'tu." He made his way to the coffee table, and sat down, setting the bag on top of the table. Sitting between it and the couch, Dean could lean back and watch the TV comfortably while eating. There was either a new program on, or the original cast had been killed and replaced by a pair of horses.

Sam put his stuff on the table next to the bag and settled on the couch. "Let me take a look at the remote; maybe I'll have a vision on how to make it work."

"Knock yourself out." Dean waved his hand towards the couch where he'd dropped the remote in frustration an hour ago. Opening the take-out bag, he saw the universal red and white boxes, and pulled one out at random. Rice. He set it to one side and tried again. Chow mien. "Oh god, this is disgusting," he said, holding it away from himself and towards Sam.

Sam chuckled and took the box from him, stretching forward to pick up a fork. In his other hand he had the remote and was studying it intently.

"Is it speaking to you, O Stupendous Swami?"

He wasn't exactly sure what the gesture Sam made with his fork in response meant, but it looked pretty damn rude.

"You know, I'm starting to pick up a little Korean. We could leave it on this station." Dean focused on the screen as he pulled out another box. "I think this horse is saying he needs to catch a magic frog in order to build a new skyscraper." He glanced down and smiled when he saw a second box of rice. Grabbing a fork, he took a huge bite, not really caring what else Sam had got.

"Your brain scares me sometimes. I think I might have figured it out." Sam held the remote out towards the TV and hit a button; on the screen the horses disappeared to be replaced by a menu of a whole lot of channels.

"Dude! How'd you do that?" Not that he really cared, as long as Sam didn't make them watch the congressional channel.

Sam grinned. "You got the charms, I got the brains." The cursor on the screen began flipping through the choices as Sam held a button down.

Dean flipped him off, but left him to it. He grabbed another box from the bag and opened it. Slices of beef and onions. He poked a bit and found absolutely no other vegetables to speak of.

He smiled.

Sam finally settled on a baseball game. "This okay?"

He glanced up. "That's great." He took a bite of his food -- his absolute favorite, but you almost never found it on the menu without some green or orange vegetable in it. Then he looked more carefully at the screen. "Are those Korean names on the jerseys?" He glared at Sam.

"Japanese, I think." Sam settled back on the couch, swinging his feet up and leaning back against the arm rest.

"Oh, that's all right, then." He hesitated, then, quietly, he managed, "Thanks."

Sam shrugged. "I'm sure you would've figured it out yourself eventually. You're good with your hands."

"I meant...." He gestured with the carton of food. "And the steaks."

"It's no big deal." Sam took a big bite of his chow mien and had to swallow before continuing. "You said you wanted them, and I was able to get them so..."

"Yeah." No big deal. Dean leaned back again, picking up the rice and dumping a couple forkfuls into the beef. He stared at the screen, glad to see the baseball game looked like every other game he'd ever seen. Not that he would have cared much if they'd been using completely different rules.

As long as there weren't any women screaming in Korean, or horses playing with frogs.

One of Sam's hands dropped down to toy gently with Dean's short hair. "This is nice."

He resisted the urge to push his head towards Sam's hand -- though if Sam kept it up, Dean had a feeling he was going to fall asleep. The painkillers had finally kicked in and the pain in his shoulder had receded. It was nice. Food, TV, Sam, and nothing to do but enjoy all three.

Sam fell silent again, though he kept up playing with Dean's hair as they watched the game.

Dean managed to polish off the entire carton of spicy beef and the carton of rice by the end of the next inning. The last several bites were difficult, because his eyes kept slipping closed. Finally he set the empty cartons down and let his head fall to the side, coming to rest on Sam's knee.

He heard Sam chuckle warmly. "I wonder if this is what it's like to have a pet."

"Woof," Dean said, quietly. He could feel himself falling asleep, and knew he should probably sit up. Watch the game, maybe put some clothes on. Instead he let his eyes drift closed again.

"Dean?" Sam's soft voice sounded like it was coming from somewhere far away.

Dean tried to open his eyes, and was surprised at how hard it seemed to be. He finally got them open -- and had no clue where he was. Sitting up, in someone's... right. The cabin.

The TV was off, and he looked over to find Sam watching him. "Wha' time si?" he asked, wanting to go right back to sleep.

"A little after ten. Figured you'd be more comfortable sleeping in a bed." Sam smiled at him. "Not that I mind being used as a pillow."

"Bed?" Dean looked around. There was a couch right here. He grabbed at the towel that was slipping from his shoulder, and looked down at it. Towel?

Sam chuckled. "Yeah, bed. Want to come find one with me?"

"'K." Dean held out his hand, and let Sam take it, and pull him to his feet. Dean felt himself sway, so he leaned against Sam for balance. Yawning, he closed his eyes for a second.

"Dean." Sam's voice was amused and his arms had found their way around Dean's waist.

He smiled and snuggled in. It felt so good to just stay there, holding Sam and being held. "One of the best parts," he added.


"This," Dean said. "'Bout being in love with you. You snuggle."

There was silence for a long moment, but he felt Sam's fingers stroking at the back of his neck.

"Mmmmm. And that." Dean burrowed closer, wondering how he had never known how much he loved it when Sam caressed the back of his neck. He could spend all night like this, for the rest of his life. He could feel himself falling asleep again, and sighed, happily. "Love you."

Sam hugged him tighter. "Come on, let's go find that bed."

"Wanna go to sleep," Dean protested, when Sam moved. He didn't let go of Sam, and opened his eyes to glare at him -- and realised they were standing in the middle of the living room. He looked around. "Oh."

Sam smiled at him. "Yeah. Come on. Upstairs."

Dean nodded, and let his brother get him moving. He only stumbled a little; he could have woken himself up fully, but he didn't really see the point. He was just going to bed, and Sam was here to make sure he ended up in a bedroom and not on the porch.

He slipped his arm around Sam's waist, then tilted his head just enough. Sam's lips were warm.

"Dean..." Sam murmured before Dean covered his mouth again.

"Yeah?" Dean leaned back the slightest bit, so he could see Sam's face. He was feeling a lot more awake, suddenly. And feeling Sam, pressed against his not-really-clothed body.

He thought about the head-shrinking he'd given himself while Sam was gone. He didn't know if he'd reached any conclusions about what to do later -- but for now, for this weekend at least, he was going to shelve it all and let himself enjoy.

If it was all he could get, he needed to make it last.

"Bed?" Sam said in-between more kisses.

Dean felt himself growl. Bed, Sam, and a hell of a lot of hours with nothing else to do. "Bed," he agreed, then checked to see how Sam felt about having his neck sucked on.

Judging from the sound Sam made, he seemed to really really like it.

Dean growled again, then pushed his brother backwards. Sam looked stunned -- then his eyes got sad. But Dean just stepped forward and bodily propelled his brother towards the stairs. He didn't mind having sex in the living room, but his collarbone would probably thank him tomorrow if he was lying down on a soft bed, instead.

When Sam figured out what he was doing, he grinned, turned around and dashed up the stairs.

Dean hurried after him, leaving the towel where it fell, as it slipped off his shoulders. Reaching the top of the stairs, Sam glanced over his shoulder; Dean was close enough to see how his brother's eyes darkened when he looked at him. Sam half-reached for him, but stopped and shook his head. "Bed," he said firmly, reminding himself or Dean, Dean couldn't be sure. Then he headed at full speed down the hallway and into the master bedroom.

Dean followed, a little more slowly -- a long bath towel wasn't really built for speed. He reached the bedroom door not much after Sam did, though, and he paused in the doorway.

Sam had begun shedding his clothes the second he entered the room and was now down to just his jeans left, standing beside that sinfully large bed. He glanced over his shoulder, saw Dean hovering in the doorway and paused. "Dean?" he asked softly, making it question, concern and invitation all at once.

Dean put his hand on the towel where the corner was tucked in, and tugged. The towel spilled at his feet and he saw his brother's eyes widen and his focus fixate. "You gonna stand there all night?" he asked, softly.

The smile Sam gave him then was equal parts delight and wickedness and lit up his whole face in a way that Dean wanted to see more of. Moving quickly, Sam stripped off his jeans, kicking them aside.

"So I was thinking," Dean spoke casually, even as he walked towards Sam, both of them naked and taking their time. He had no idea what he wanted to do -- which he wanted to do first, tonight, and what could wait until later. At Sam's questioning expression, he asked, "Think the TV up here gets the Korean stations?"

Before Sam could respond, Dean was in front of him, almost but not quite touching. Sam licked his lips and leaned towards Dean slightly but didn't make contact. "Why?" he asked huskily. "You in the mood for more stories about horses and magic frogs?"

"I was starting to get a grasp of the...language," he said, slipping in the last tiny bit, and pressing his lips against Sam's. It was easy -- like he'd been doing it for years. The touch of Sam's mouth was already long familiar, he knew how Sam would respond if he pressed his tongue on the edge of Sam's lip just so.

Sam made a noise in the back of his throat and wrapped his arms around Dean, one hand ending up at the back of his neck, holding him in the kiss, the other going around his waist, pressing their bodies together.

Yep, that was the response. He pulled on Sam's lip, holding it carefully -- he didn't want to bite, not yet. "For example," he said when he released Sam's mouth, "Shibbal nom."

He had no idea if his accent was still as lousy as Kwan always insisted it was. Dean had always thought the old guy was just half-deaf. Dean grinned at the look on Sam's face.

"Jot di gari," he whispered, as though he wasn't calling his brother a dickhead, and wasn't thinking about doing what he'd said a moment ago. He slid his hand down Sam's back, feeling every bump of his spine, and pressing the flat of his hand to the rise of his ass.

"What does that mean?" Sam asked in a voice barely above a whisper. He was going still and quiet under Dean's touch as if afraid of doing something to make him stop.

"It means, 'my horse has a magic frog.'" Dean grinned, leaving his hand where it was. Sam felt so fucking good -- he couldn't decide if he wanted to take all night, explore and love and tease, or if he wanted to stop talking already and throw Sam down.

Sam puffed out a breath of laughter. "Of course it does."

"I told you I was watching that show for an hour. Stuff sinks in." With his free hand, Dean began to stroke Sam's arm. Skin so soft, and the muscles under it so hard. He knew what Sam could do -- every move he'd learned, most of them practiced on Dean himself.

He kissed Sam again before he could capitulate and tell him the truth.

The kiss pulled another soft whimper out of Sam and he held onto Dean tighter. Dean pushed him backwards, nudging him towards the bed. The whole point of wasting time to come upstairs, after all, was to lie down rather than do this whole thing standing.

Sam's knees hit the back of the bed and a little push from Dean sent him sprawling back on it. Dean's breath caught as he looked down at him, all loose limbed and dark eyed, the very essence of an invitation to sex.

Sam's mouth quirked up into a small smile. "Bed."

"Yes, it is," Dean said, agreeably. "You really are the smart one." He stayed where he was -- looking. Seeing what he'd seen in stolen glances, sideways looks, and his imagination. Now he could just stand there and look his fill.

Sam was entirely too gorgeous. Dean swallowed, regret whispering in the back of his mind. Only trouble was he couldn't decide if he regretted not having this sooner, or regretted having it now -- so he would know what he was losing, when he lost it.

"Hey." Sam leaned up on his elbows and reached out a hand to him. "It's okay. Whatever you're thinking... I'm not going anywhere."

Dean smirked. "Not dressed like that, you're not." He walked forward and climbed onto the bed, knees on the mattress on either side of Sam's legs.

Sam rested his hands on Dean's thighs and grinned up at him. "Hi."

"Not yet, but I'd like to be." He grinned down at Sam, then leaned forward slowly until he caught himself with his hands.

And fell to one side, narrowly missing his brother. He gave Sam an innocent look. "What?"

Sam didn't say anything, just raised an eyebrow and ran a hand over Dean's sore shoulder.

"So I was thinking we could do this on our sides," Dean said, casually. Or -- the image of Sam, on top...fucking him.... Dean bit back a moan, but surged forward and kissed Sam, hard. Tangled his legs with Sam's, felt their erections press tight against each other.

Sam broke the kiss off with a gasp, his hands moving to stroke down Dean's back to his ass. "Sides can be good," he said, then dove back into another kiss.

Dean opened his mouth, let Sam direct the kiss. Let him do what he wanted while Dean slid his hands up Sam's back, pulling him hard, against him. Grasping at his brother's back, he began to rock, slightly, trying to get...something. More. He heard himself whimper.

"What do you want?" Sam murmured against his lips. "Anything, Dean. We can do whatever you want."

"Want... a five star luxury hotel in Cancun. A 1969 Mustang, green with leather interior." Dean kissed Sam, losing his train of thought as Sam moved against him. "Want those boots," he tossed out, remembering the ones he'd seen a biker wearing -- long black shank, black painted buckles. Sturdy enough to keep a guy from turning an ankle as he ran through the woods, and hot enough that the boots, tight jeans, and a white t-shirt would guarantee he'd get laid in any bar in any town across the country.

He gripped Sam's back, then ducked his head to do that biting thing that had made Sam moan, earlier.

It made him moan this time too, as well as move his hips against him in a way that just made Dean bite harder. "W-with me," Sam said, his voice catching. "What do you want to do with me?"

"You can come to Mexico with me," Dean allowed. "Won't let you drive the car." He sucked on Sam's neck, light enough not to leave a mark. The bite he'd left before was already darkening, and Dean gave it a lick.

Sam whimpered and tilted his head back. "God, Dean..."

"If you insist. I guess it's better than calling me 'honeybuns'." Dean sucked again, a little harder. Sam could deal with having a row of hickeys.

"I'll call you anything you want if you keep doing that."

Dean chuckled, and gave the spot a lick with the tip of his tongue. "Call me Oh Master of the World, Ruler of Brothers and Savior of All, Best and Smartest and--" Crap. He couldn't remember the rest of it.

"Dean," Sam gasped simply, but in a way that meant... everything. Anything else he asked Sam to call him would be redundant.

"God, I--" Dean kissed Sam, smothering the words before he could say them. Even though he had a faint memory of saying it already, harlequin romance and flowery declarations of love. He shook his head. "I just want you."

Sam pulled back enough to meet Dean's gaze, his eyes deep and serious. He touched Dean's cheek lightly. "You've got me. Always."

It sounded so good. It sounded perfect, which made Dean wonder just how long it would be before it all went to hell. But right now, with Sam here, Dean was willing to let it be perfect. He rolled towards Sam, letting his nose brush against Sam's cheek, nuzzled a bit and inhaled, deeply.

Sighing, Sam slid his fingers back from Dean's cheek into his hair, massaging gently. Dean felt himself practically purring, eyes slipping closed and his whole body was torn between falling apart into boneless oblivion, and flipping his brother onto his back and fucking him. He rocked his hips forward, already thrusting the way he wanted -- still had no idea if he wanted to fuck Sam or be fucked, or if he wanted to just stay where he was and touch Sam for the rest of forever.

Sam matched his rhythm and they rocked against each other slow and easy. Dean sighed, relaxing into Sam's hold. His cock was hard and he knew that pretty soon he'd be complaining of blue balls. But right now, all he wanted was to lie here and hold on. Touch, and be touched.

He felt something curling up tight in his chest and he turned his head, looking for Sam's mouth again. Felt himself whimper, and it sounded like... he had no idea what, something embarrassing and worth being teased over if he knew his brother. But the feeling was growing, digging claws into his chest and heart and pulling at him, dragging himself closer, and he tried to hold onto Sam.

The rocking of his hips just wasn't doing it, and he shoved his cock against Sam, rubbing harder, needing more than just this. Needed... he had no idea what, but the sensation inside was pushing him, desperate and needing and something was going to break if he didn't do something, soon.

Sam's mouth on his was no longer gentle, but hungry, desperate. "Dean," Sam gasped between kisses. "Anything. Dean..."

He tried to think about what he wanted, but all he came up with was -- now. He reached down between their bodies, and wrapped his hand around both of their erections. Pulled at them, and felt his brother slam his body against his in reaction. Dean moaned and moved his hand again, pushing his leg between Sam's and trying to hold him close for leverage.

They rolled over as they moved against each other, trying to get even closer. Dean ended up flat on his back with Sam over him, on him. His legs fell apart, letting Sam fall between them, and he knew what he wanted. One of the things he wanted, only right now he needed now more than he needed Sam inside him. He captured his brother's mouth in a kiss, holding him there as he moved his hand, up and down in a quickening rhythm.

Sam was making little noises deep in his chest, his hips rocking in frantic motion against Dean. He finally pulled his mouth away from Dean's panting for breath. "I'm gonna..."

"Come on, Sammy, come for me." He let go his own cock and concentrated on Sam.

Sam groaned and closed his eyes, but immediately opened them again. He held Dean's gaze steadily as Dean drove him over the edge and he came.

"Christ, Sam...." Dean swallowed, hard, and found himself unable to tear his gaze away from Sam's. Caught up and held fast, Dean's hand moved of its own accord for a moment. Then his hand stilled and he lay there -- unable and unwilling to break away. Sam's eyes were so open, Dean felt like he could see right through them, into the depths of his brother's mind.

Still not looking away, Sam slid his hand down between them and wrapped it around Dean's cock. "You too," he said, voice even huskier than it had been before. "Want to see you."

Dean cried out at the feel of Sam's hand. Long fingers, a strength in his fist that Dean knew -- never like this, with the feeling that Sam was holding him in his hand, and not just one small part of his body. He reached out and dug his own fingers into Sam's back, hanging on while Sam jerked him off.

His body started shaking, and he closed his eyes and pressed his forehead to Sam's shoulder as he lost control.

Sam held him through his orgasm then shifted a little to the side, dropping a kiss on Dean's temple as he did. Dean concentrated on just breathing for a moment. Inhale, exhale, molecules reforming his body in what he hoped was their original configuration. Then he lifted his head and looked at Sam -- half intending to give him an evil grin, but as soon as he started to smile, he just...smiled.

Sam smiled back, wide and bright as the sun, and leaned in and kissed him again. When they broke away, Dean bumped Sam's nose with his own, and tucked his head back down against Sam's shoulder. He didn't want to move.

He felt Sam's hands move idly over his back and arms, not arousing, just keeping contact. "I could get used to this," Sam murmured on a long contented sigh.

Dean felt himself tense, then forced himself to relax. Yeah, he could definitely get used to this as well. He lifted his head and kissed Sam again -- collecting, he told himself. Collect as many as he could, to horde for later.

They lay like that for a while, exchanging the occasional lazy kiss and just generally basking in each other. Sam finally stirred a little and asked, "So was that really Korean?"

Dean could actually feel his brain try to kick into gear, and fail. "Huh?"

"Before. What you were saying," Sam frowned, obviously trying to remember, "'shibbal nom' and 'jot di gari.' Is that really Korean?"

Struggling to make his brain work again, and damn, why hadn't anyone warned him that Sam didn't go to sleep after sex? "Um, yeah. It's Korean."

"What does it mean?"

"I called you a dickhead," Dean said easily. "Jot di gari," he repeated. He wasn't exactly in a position to protect himself, but he figured Sam wouldn't actually be surprised to have Dean calling him names.

And indeed, Sam's only reaction was to roll his eyes. "As pet names go, I think I prefer Sammy." He paused. "And 'shibbal nom'?"

Dean knew that if he didn't tell him what he'd said, Sam would just look it up somewhere. Well, he could always pretend he hadn't been...offering. "I just said fuck you," he said, trying for casual and pretty sure Sam was seeing right through him.

Sam took it in silently, then nodded slowly. "Do you want to?" he finally said. "I mean, not now obviously since we just..."

"Can we not talk about this now?" Dean asked, exaggerating the whine in his voice. "I was trying to enjoy the afterglow, maybe sleep for ten hours." He squeezed Sam a little, trying to let him know he wasn't upset by the question -- even if he really didn't want to talk about it.

Hell yes, he wanted to fuck Sam. Wanted Sam to fuck him. But he did not want to talk about it beforehand.

"Okay," Sam replied, a little subdued. He fell silent again and Dean thought he'd be able to go to sleep but no, Sam hadn't quite run down yet. "So where did you learn how to swear in Korean?"

Resigning himself to not getting to sleep anytime soon, Dean sighed. "Kwan. This old guy I stayed with for a few weeks. His house was haunted, but the ghost only came around every so often. He asked me to stay and get rid of it, and I owed him a favor, so I did. And heck, free room and board while I was waiting? Heck of a deal.

"He taught me how to play hwa'tu, a card game. Never did manage to beat him, so it's probably a good thing we weren't playing for money. Anyhow, he cussed a lot, so I picked some up along the way. By the time I left, I could even order take-out without making the lady at the restaurant yell at me to order in English."

Dean smiled, remembering Kwan. He'd cursed a blue streak, but he'd been kind and extremely patient with nearly everyone he met.

"He had a huge library, all Korean books. He talked about teaching me how to read 'em, if I stayed long enough. But then the ghost showed, and I got rid of it, burned its bones. When I left Kwan asked me to burn his, too. I didn't want to, but he said he was ready." Dean shrugged, remembering. Kwan had been a little like a grandfather, and Dean had toyed with the idea of visiting him off and on.

Sam took the story in with quiet attention. "When was this?" he asked softly, hands rubbing soothingly over Dean's skin again.

"Last fall right after we moved here, when dad was laid up with that broken ankle." Dean gave Sam a flat look. "You noticed I was gone for awhile?"

"I noticed. You left me alone with Dad."

Dean froze. And how the hell had he never realised that?

Sam took a look at his face and rolled his eyes. "Dean..."

"Sorry," he said, woodenly. "I guess I didn't think you two... hell, you weren't dead when I got home and the apartment was still standing. I didn't...." Of course he should have known. How long had it been since Sam and dad got along for more than a few hours? But he'd called home while he'd been gone, and no one had said anything that made him think he needed to come back and pull them apart.

And he hadn't wanted to go back. Staying with Kwan had been...nice. He missed the old guy, even though he'd already been dead when Dean had met him. Hell, he still had the book Kwan had told him he could take, even though he knew there was no way he'd ever learn how to read it.

He shoved himself backwards, and got out of bed. The rock spirit was gone, and they didn't need to be hanging around here doing this.

"Where are you going?" Sam sat up, looking at him alarmed.

It sounded stupid in his head, as he considered the answer to that question. It was why he hated talking about things. He looked around and spotted his duffel; he went over to it to grab some clothes. "Leaving," he said, knowing it would just piss Sam off.

But he couldn't stay.

"What?" In a flash Sam was out of the bed and across the room, grabbing onto Dean's shoulders. "You're leaving," he repeated as if he couldn't quite believe he understood the words correctly.

"We should get back," he said, not able to look Sam in the eyes. "We got rid of the rock spirit. We don't need...."

"Stop fucking channeling Dad and talk to me, dammit!" Sam took a deep breath and his next words were calmer if still worried. "What just happened here?"

"I'm not fucking channeling-- don't you get it?" Dean had picked up his jeans; now he threw them on the ground and faced Sam. "I spend a few weeks hanging out with a nice old ghost, and leave you and dad alone, and we all know how that goes. I go to Cassiday's birthday party while dad's gone on a hunt and you get picked up by Social Services."

He hadn't actually got in trouble for that one, since dad had said he could go. Nine year old Sam could have stayed home alone for days without trouble, but that hadn't stopped Child Protection Services from sticking their noses in.

Spinning away from Sam, Dean stormed halfway across the room, trying to push the image out of his mind but he couldn't. Bending over Sammy's bed. Killing him. "Go to play fucking video games and I get you nearly killed. Fuck, don't you get it? I don't get--" He swallowed the rest. I don't get to have things like this.

"What are you talking about?" Sam followed him, not letting him get the distance he needed. "How does playing video games nearly get me killed?"

He could remember walking in. Hearing the soft noises, seeing the flicker of light. Pushing the door open he'd already been terrified, and seeing that...thing, sucking the life out of his brother.

All he'd been able to think was, dad will kill me, and I'll deserve it.

"You were four, and dad was after a shtriga," Dean said. "Told me to stay with you but I didn't. And I came back and it...had you...."

"I remember." Sam's voice had that strange almost not believing his own words quality that Dean was getting used to associating with Sam's visions. "You telling me about it, I mean. But Dean, you were just a kid and-"

"And I disobeyed dad because I was bored, and nearly got you killed." Dean didn't know what Sam knew, or what he had seen. But Dean remembered. There was no grey about it - some things really were just black and white. "I was old enough to know better," he said, feeling his throat closing up at the words. He hated it, had always hated it, but he'd also understood. The stakes were too high to waste time on frivolities.

And yet he kept on forgetting.

"We can't do this, Sam," he whispered, voice breaking. Just as well, because something inside him was breaking, too.

"You saved me."

Dean laughed, once. "Dad saved you. I couldn't even fire the shotgun. I had it up, ready to fire, and I just...froze. If dad hadn't come in...."

"No. When... Dad sent us after it again -- that's when you told me about what happened. I didn't -- I don't -- have any memory of it myself. But I do remember... we went after it again and it got me... There was this light that was just taking everything and..." Sam looked up and met and held Dean's gaze. "You didn't freeze. You shot it. Saved me."

"We went after it?" Dean felt his heart beat faster. "You know where it is?"

"Not now." Sam frowned. "But in... five years, I think?... it'll be in Fitchburg, Wisconsin. But that's not the point."

"So we can go kill it." Dean didn't care about what Sam's point was -- it wasn't like Sam would shut up about it yet, anyway. But knowing that they could go kill the thing he'd let get away.... He could wait.

Sam rolled his eyes. "Yeah, in five years we can go kill it. But that's five years from now so can we focus on the present?"

"Focus on what? There's nothing to focus on. This was a really bad idea, and we're going home, and we're not talking about this again and in five years we go to Fitchburg. End of discussion." Dean tried to walk away from Sam so he could get dressed.

"Oh like hell it is," Sam growled, grabbing Dean's good shoulder and holding on tight. "We are talking about it and we're not going home and the only bad idea is the one about us forgetting about what we have."

Dean tried to pull free, but Sam wasn't letting go. He gave his brother a glare, and Sam just glowered back. "What do you want from me?" Dean ground out. "Every time I get something I want, bad things happen. I don't want to know what's going to happen if we--"

"So you do want it. Want me."

All Dean could think was, his brother had the most insane thought process. "Of course I want you," he snapped. "I told you I've been wanting you for the last two fucking years. But that doesn't mean I can have you!"

"I'm right here," Sam said, stepping closer, getting into Dean's personal space. "I'm saying you can. You want me, I want you, that's all that is important."

But Dean shook his head. "It doesn't... it won't work." He felt like he was begging, but he didn't know for what. "It's just...like I'm cursed or something. Whenever I want something -- it just...." He tried to step backwards, but Sam still wasn't letting him go.

"You're not cursed," Sam began hotly, then stopped and took a deep breath. "Okay, let's pretend for a minute that I believe the whole curse thing... you ever thought that maybe this -- us -- is what breaks it? I got these vision-memories that tell me that we can have this, and do, and nothing bad happens because of it. And for some reason, I've got that knowledge now. Which, to me, means that we're supposed to have each other this way. And maybe that's to show you you're not cursed."

"That's insane," Dean told him. Even as part of him was screaming to take the rationale Sam was handing him. But he didn't dare risk finding out what would go wrong. What would be worse than losing Sam all together? He found his brother's hand, and twined his fingers with Sam's. "I can't lose you, Sammy."

Sam squeezed his hand tightly. "You're not going to. You couldn't, even if you wanted to. And I'd watch who you were calling insane, curse-boy."

He opened his mouth to retort. Nothing came to mind, and he closed his eyes and let his head fall forward, coming to rest against Sam's cheek. "Dickhead," he whispered.

Sam pulled him close, wrapping his arms around him tightly. "So no more talk of leaving?"

"I don't want to," Dean said, not sure he'd said it loudly or clearly enough for Sam to hear. "But I'm--" He stopped, then forced himself to admit, "Afraid of what's going to happen."

"Hopefully what's going to happen is some really good sex."

Dean laughed again, and felt it change -- caught the sob in his chest, trying to stuff it down where it belonged. He tried to cling to Sam, one hand gripping Sam's hand and the other slipping on bare skin.

Sam held him tighter. "It's okay, Dean," he said, the hand Dean wasn't clutching moving to stroke the back of his neck again. "I'm not going anywhere. You're stuck with me. Whatever happens -- if anything does -- we'll deal with it together. Promise."

He wished he could believe Sam. That Sam knew, somehow -- had the ability and power to make it true. He felt his breath shudder, and tried to push it all back down, again, and instead of going away, it just began to shatter.

Dean closed his eyes and concentrated on the motion of Sam's hand on his neck. The way Sam's voice was so soft, and low, vibrations in his chest burrowing into Dean's own. His tears made Sam's skin wet, and he turned his face, but all he could do was bury himself in further.

Sam didn't seem to mind, just held him and continued murmuring softly, a strong presence for Dean to cling to as the emotional storm tried to drag him under.

"S'why I hate talking," Dean complained. He reached up and pressed his palms against his eyes, but it didn't seem to help. He did manage to take a deep breath. Then, not sure if Sam was through or not, he asked, "Can we just go back to bed?"

Sam chuckled, the sound rumbling pleasantly through his chest and into Dean's. "I wasn't the one who decided to get up in the first place."

"Shut up." He didn't manage to get any heat behind it, and he felt like if he could just lie down, he'd be able to sleep for a week. "You're the one who wouldn't go to sleep."

"That's because being with you makes me so...." Sam trailed off as if he couldn't find the right word, but his emotions were plain in his eyes.

"Chatty?" Dean supplied, not wanting to try to name what he saw, even though it made him feel warm. Loved. Instead he frowned. "Well, from now on you have to promise not to always talk after we have sex. Or I'll never get any sleep." He slipped away from Sam, except for the grip on his hand, and moved towards the bed.

Sam went with him willingly. "If it'll keep you from bolting for the hills, I think I can manage to keep the talking after sex to a minimum."

Dean just grunted his approval, and moved to the side of the bed. He let go of Sam's hand and laid down on his stomach, grabbing the pillow and stretching out. Sliding in beside him, Sam fitted himself around Dean like two puzzle pieces clicking. He sighed in contentment and kissed Dean's shoulder.

Dean thought he should say something. Thank you. Love you. He rubbed his face against the pillow, drying off his cheek.

"Shibbal nom," he whispered.

He felt more than heard his brother's breath of laughter. "Later," Sam promised.


Dean woke up and noticed three things. The first was that he felt damn good, like he'd slept for about a year. The second was that it really was late in the morning.

The third was that the bed was empty.

As soon as he realised Sam was gone, he heard a soft noise and opened his eyes. Sam was just coming into the room. He was dressed in his usual t-shirt and jeans, but he was barefoot. In his hands he held two steaming mugs. "Figured you'd be waking up soon," he said, giving Dean a welcoming smile and one of the mugs.

"Whasszah?" Dean asked, rubbing his eyes and rolling over. He realised he hadn't shifted at all from the time he'd fallen asleep. The smell of coffee hit him, and he sat up as fast as he could, holding out his hand for the mug.

Sam chuckled and handed it over, then sat on the edge of the bed, sipping at his own mug. "Figured you'd need that, too."

Vaguely, Dean flipped him off, and held the mug under his nose. The steam and scent hit him full in the face and he sighed. When he pried his eyes open and took a sip, he discovered that Sam had actually made it properly -- black, and strong. Not that he wouldn't have bet Sam's mug had milk and sugar in it. "What time is it?" he asked, not really caring.

"About half past eleven. Guess you needed the sleep."

Dean stared at him. "In the morning?" Hell, he never slept that late -- except for when he didn't get to bed until six. But...he couldn't remember the last time he'd got over twelve hours of sleep in a row.

On the other hand, he remembered taking four painkillers, then having sex. Apparently he'd relaxed himself into a coma.

"That generally is when it's light out, yeah," Sam said dryly. He reached out and rested a hand on Dean's leg, still covered by the blanket. "Feeling better?"

Taking a moment to consider the question seriously, Dean finally smiled. "Yeah. Yeah, I do." He took another sip of his coffee, and realised that he felt fantastic.

Sam let out a breath. "Good."

Dean looked at his brother closely. Sam was smiling a little, eyes clear and brown like they got when he was happy. He looked relaxed, though Dean could see the tiny thrum of awareness in him that meant that should anything happen, Sam would be prepared for it. It was a sensation Dean knew well, having had it drummed into him by age seven.

But today it wasn't anything to worry about. Not here, not now. Dean leaned back against the headboard and crooked a finger at his brother to come closer. Sam raised an eyebrow sardonically but nonetheless complied, shifting up the bed until the distance between them was measurable in inches. Dean reached up and placed a finger under Sam's chin, stroking lightly. Then he gave Sam a kiss.

Sam made a barely audible noise and kissed him back.

"So, almost noon?" Dean asked, trying not to sound like he was out of breath from a single, heart-stopping kiss.

"Yeah," Sam replied after a few blinks. "If you didn't wake up soon, I was going to come in here with a pail of ice water."

"And ruin this bed? I don't think so." Dean shook his head. "But since you asked, I am awake, and I want my steak for lunch. Well, breakfast."

Sam nodded as if in agreement and stood up. "Then you can shift your ass and come downstairs and help me cook."

Dean frowned. "I'm pretty sure that wasn't part of the agreement."

"Dean, you threw me in the lake. You're lucky I went and bought the steak at all."

Dean looked down, pouting just a little. He didn't know if Sam would take it as the joke it was meant, if he reminded Sam that he'd shot Dean. Or would, in the future. At that thought he looked up and asked, "How do I know you won't still shoot me?"

"You don't." Sam grinned at him. It wasn't a very reassuring expression; in fact it made Dean wonder if he should start ducking now. "Might want to remember that next time you get the urge to throw me in large bodies of water."

"Oh yeah?" Dean knew it wasn't his best retort as soon as it came out of his mouth. But Sam was grinning at him, and Dean was still feeling entirely too relaxed, and even if he had to do the cooking he was going to have steak for breakfast.

And if he wanted to, he could kiss Sam again, and pull him back into bed and maybe they wouldn't have breakfast at all. In fact, staring up at Sam grinning down at him, he decided he wanted to do that very much.

And for once, he reached for what he wanted, laughing as his brother willingly tumbled down with him and proceeded to take his breath away all over again.

Hell, the steaks could wait until dinner, after all.

the end