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And the Ground Shook (8/22) - My Little Corner of the World
And the Ground Shook (8/22)
Disclaimer: I don't own them, they own me.
Rating: Gen, with very mild language.
Category: Gen.
Pairings: None.
Characters: Hurt!Dean, John, Sam.
Summery: "Well, I looked everywhere I could. I'm sorry, I have no idea what this thing is." Bobby said. John frowned. "So you don’t think it's some kind of demonic ritual?" he asked...
Comments: Are loved and coveted.
Notes: Pre-series, AU. Not a deathfic. Lots of Dean-whumping, though. Will be updated regularly.

And the Ground Shook
Chapter Eight – New Terrain

John sat by his sleeping son's hospital bed, his journal in his lap as he squinted his eyes in the dim light and read from an old book he managed to find. Sammy was watching the tiny TV in a chair next to him. John glanced at both his sons sporadically, making sure they were both all right.

Dean was out cold, pain medication combined with exhaustion taking their toll on his eldest. John scrubbed a hand over his tired face before staring at the scribbling in his journal. A new entry, starting with a sketch. A symbol, the same one he was trying to find in the book, the same one he'd faxed Bobby earlier. A strange looking beast inside an upturned triangle, circled by writings in a language John couldn’t understand. Something did this to his boy. Something hurt his son and branded him. And that something was going to die.

A little over a week later, Dean was finally discharged from the hospital. The Winchesters would probably have sighed in relief if it weren’t for the fact that Dean was not getting better – that is to say, he could get out of bed, though the doctors recommended he did as little of that as possible, and he could walk around some. His blood pressure stabilized, the external bruises faded and the internal ones were beginning to heal. Which didn’t explain why he was still so weak. The tests have shown nothing, but John had his own suspicions.

Dean didn’t resent being wheeled over to the hospital entrance in a wheelchair, but Sam suspected it had something to do with a certain nurse. John brought the car over as close as possible, getting out and ready to help his oldest to the car, but Dean pushed out of the wheelchair on his own, and with a smirk and a wink to the lovely nurse, made his way to the car on his own. Wobbly as that might have been, it was still good to see him up and about. Dean made it to the passenger seat, and Sam exchange a quick look with his father.

"Get in the back, Dean." John said quickly. Dean made a face.

"Nah, it's okay, I want to ride shotgun." He said, opening the passenger side door only to have Sam close it.

"In the back, Dean." Sam said insistently.

"But I called shotgun," Dean protested.

"Yeah, and I've got one. Get in the back Dean, that's an order." John clipped. Dean rolled his eyes, but did as he was told.

John gave the hospital one more look, still a little apprehensive, but then got in the truck himself, turning the engine on and driving away, back to their rental apartment. He looked at the rear view mirror, catching a glimpse of his children.

It used to be simpler; Sam and Dean in the back seat, playing games, annoying him and each other in the long car rides from Nowheresville to Generic Town, USA. They used to talk and laugh and tease.

Another glimpse in the rear view mirror showed a worried teenage Sam and a ragged looking Dean. They were both quiet. Dean's head was resting against the window as he stared blindly at the quickly changing view. The quietness was grating on John's nerves. He turned on the radio. That worked. John smiled a little at the twin flinches from both his sons.

"Daaaaad!" they protested in unison.

"You know the rules, boys. Driver picks the music, shotgun shuts his cakehole." John stated. Sam rolled his eyes, Dean huffed, but neither said anything else to him. John's smile grew a little when he glanced in the mirror again to find his sons whispering to each other, Sam actually giggling.

Twenty minutes later, it was becoming obvious Dean was less than comfortable, and the next time John glanced at his sons through the rear view mirror, Dean was lying across the backseat, his head in Sam's lap, his eyes closed, his face wrinkled with pain.

"Dean, you alright back there?" John asked. Dean quickly opened his eyes.

"Just needed to lie down." He said, offering his father a small smile.

The smile quickly vanished, though, and the silence returned to the car – John even lowered the volume on the radio so he could hear any sound coming from either of his sons.

"Dad?" Dean asked some fifteen minutes later, his eyes closed this time.

"Yeah, kiddo?"

"How long?" John risked another glance at the mirror. Dean was pale.

"Not too long." He promise, pressing harder on the accelerator.

"Hey, Dad?" Sam ventured a moment later.

"What is it, Sammy?" John gave him a long glance in the mirror.

"You think we could find more in the library back home?" he asked after a while.

"I hope so." John answered.

"Why hasn’t Bobby called you back yet?" Sam demanded.

"I don’t know, Sammy." The older hunter answered truthfully.

"You think that's what's making him sick?" Sam asked in a small voice some moments later. John glanced in the mirror again, locking eyes with his youngest.

"We'll figure it out, Sammy." he promised after a moment, returning his attention to the road.

"Hey, him is sitting right here." Dean said irritably. Sam ignored him.

"We need to check the house. We need to put salt everywhere, put up some charms, maybe even a spell…" Sam spoke, probably more to himself than anyone else. John didn’t answer. He turned up the heat a little.

They arrived at the apartment a few hours later. Dean seemed to have fallen asleep a while earlier, though it seemed his sleep was rather restless. John stepped out of the truck, walking over to the back and opening the back door. He shook Dean's shoulder gently.

"Hey, champ, we're home." The oldest Winchester said. Dean blinked owlishly at him for a couple of seconds before he even tried to get up. "Easy," John cautioned at the pained wince on Dean's face. "You need some help there, tiger?" he offered.

"Nah, I'm…" Dean scrubbed at his face, pushing himself up, forcing himself out of the car. "I'm good." He muttered tiredly. Getting out the door proved a little trickier, but Dean still refused Sam's help. He was hit by vertigo after taking just one step, and had to close his eyes. Sam was quick to hold on to his elbow, looking uncertainly at their father.

"Dean?" John asked. Dean swallowed hard.

"Dizzy." He said, and Sam guided him back so he was leaning against the truck.

"Take your time." Sam said. Dean gave a slight nod.

"Hey, Sammy, why won't you get the door opened for us?" John suggested, tossing Sam the keys. Sam nodded quickly, making his way to the door and unlocking it.

"Hey 't's my baby!" Dean slurred a little, making John frown, but Dean just had a stupid grin on his lips as he swayed towards the Impala, parked at the front of the house. "I missed you." he said goofily, laying his head on the roof of the car once he got there, running a loving hand over the black metal. John eyed him carefully. "How'd she get here?" Dean asked, looking back at his father.

"I had Rick bring it over, remember?"

"Ah, who cares, m'baby's back!" Dean smirked.

"Son, we really should get you inside, get you in bed." John said.

"What, no dinner first? I'm not that cheap a date, you know." John raised a brow. "Yeah, alright." Dean said, taking another moment before making his way to the house on wobbly feet. He stopped at the front door and John was quick to hold on to his son's elbow.

"You okay?" he asked worriedly.

"What died in there?" Dean asked, raising a brow. John frowned, pushing Dean slightly so that he was leaning against the doorframe, and entered the house. Oh, yes, it reeked alright.


"Already on it." Sam said from somewhere inside the house as he opened every window.

"Come on, sport, let's get you to your room." John turned back to his eldest.

"I can do it." Dean said, slowly making his way inside, with John staying right at his heel, eyeing him critically, watching his every move. Dean slumped down on his bed and hissed in pain. "Didn’t remember it being this low." He muttered in way of apology to his old man.

"You want me to help you with your shoes?" John offered. Dean shook his head, jutting his head towards the adjacent bathroom.

"Kinda need to take care of some business first." Dean said. "Help me up?" he looked up at his father, and John hoisted him to his feet carefully, staying right by his son's side as he slowly made his way to the bathroom. "Okay, no need for you to go in there." Dean said, a little embarrassed, before he closed the door.

He sat on the toilet for a while, trying to gather up his strength for the way back. He eyed the shower. The small shower, the one that required standing up. This was going to be a bitch. But now wasn’t the time to think about it. Determinedly, Dean pushed himself to his feet and somehow managed making it all the way back to his bed. He kicked his shoes off and crawled into bed, completely exhausted.

"You need anything else?" John offered.

"A chick, a beer and some privacy?" Dean tried. A shadow of a smile ghosted his father's lips as John ruffled his short hair.

"Just get some rest, kiddo. Call me if there's anything…" John said, and then thought better of his words. He knew Dean too well. "Call me if you need help with anything. Call your brother if you're bored." He amended. Dean smirked.

"Yes, sir." He said, his eyes already half-closed.

"And Dean?" Dean struggled to open his eyes and look at his father questioningly. "You are so never hunting alone again. And I mean ever. You got me?" John asked seriously.

"Oh, so you're not ready to get rid of me yet?" Dean smiled.

"No. You're the only one who can cook a decent meal around here." John grinned.

"That's true." Dean mumbled, eyes closed, as he drifted away into sleep.

"I opened all the windows, I hope the smell will clear out soon." Sam reported. "The kitchen is the worst, we left some food out." He said. John nodded, digging his wallet out of his pocket.

"Listen, Sammy, I want you to go to the store, buy some food." He said, fishing out some bills and handing them over to Sam. "And real food, no junk food. Your brother still has to watch his diet." He added and Sam frowned.

"But why are we being punished?" he asked, and John smiled.

"Fine, get something for you if you want, but I mean it, healthy stuff. Fruit, vegetables, stuff like that." John said. Sam raised a brow.

"You really think you can make Dean eat vegetables? 'Cause that I've gotta see." He said. John cuffed him on the back of the head.

"Don’t be a smartmouth." He said, "You should go. And be careful." John added. Sam nodded, heading for the door as John headed for the kitchen. He wrinkled his nose. It did smell really bad. He hoped Sam would be smart enough to get some air freshener. John walked over to the cabinets, opening one and taking a large canister of salt. He had a job to do.

John woke with a start at the sound of the phone ringing. For a slight second, he was overwhelmed by a sense of panic, his mind unconsciously going back to that phone call almost a month ago. But then he remembered both his sons were safe, both were home, and both were asleep. Well, not for long if he didn’t pick up the damn phone.

"This is John," he said around a jaw-popping yawn, blinking his eyes wide open.

"John, it's me. I'm sorry to be calling at this hour, I just figured you'd want an answer as soon as possible." John's eyes darted towards the alarm clock beside his bed. It was past three in the morning. "Winchester, you there?" John scrubbed his face, clearing his throat.

"Yes, Bobby, I'm here. Thanks for getting back to me." John said, shaking his head at the worried fifteen year old that appeared at his bedroom door.

"Well, I looked everywhere I could. I'm sorry, I have no idea what this thing is." Bobby said. John frowned.

"So you don’t think it's some kind of demonic ritual?" he asked.

"Not one that I've ever heard of. I mean, the upturned triangle – it pops up in a few places, but the writing and the beast thing, I've never seen 'em before."

John ran a hand through his tousled hair, smothering another yawn. "I guess this is good news. I mean, it's probably not demonic then, right?"

"I wouldn’t know." Bobby admitted. "I mean, you know as well as I do how many of them are out there. But it's nothing I've ever seen."

"Thanks, Bobby, I really appreciate it." John said, hanging up.


"Go back to bed, Sammy." Sam gave him a look that said so many things, but John was just too tired to handle them right now. "To bed, Sammy. Now. And don’t disturb the salt around the beds."

Dean woke up to the sound of an argument. Well, of course. Home, sweet home, where it was business as usual. He pushed himself to the side, slowly, carefully sitting up and waiting. No nausea, no sharp pain in his stomach, no throbbing in his chest. It was safe to try and make it out of bed.

Slowly, Dean got off his bed, taking the time to get used to standing up before he attempted his first step. Experience had taught him that all too well. He carefully stepped over the salt circle and hissed at the sharp pain that suddenly seared through his chest. Dean swallowed his cry of pain, pressing his hand to his bandaged chest, and took a couple of deep breaths, stumbling against the wall as he waited for the pain to subside.

Well, that was new.

Dean slipped down to a crouch, trying to breathe through the pain.

His chest hurt all the time – or at least the symbol on his chest hurt all the time, but not like this. More like a heavy sort of pressure – uncomfortable, but tolerable. Dean glanced at the undisturbed circle of salt and cursed. That could not be a good thing.

Dean hesitated. He wasn’t sure what to do first; go to the bathroom, or play his role as referee and stop his father and brother from fighting. The shouting finally won. Especially after Dean realized what it was about. With a miserable whimper he'll later deny making, Dean pushed himself to his feet. He made his way to his father and brother, noting that it wasn’t as difficult as it had been the day before, and listened a few more seconds.

"Sam, this is not a discussion! You're going, end of story!" John yelled.

"Like hell it is! I'm not going anywhere! You can't make me. You can drive me there, you can get me in class, but you'll have to spend every second with me or I'll just come back!" Sam yelled back. "I am not leaving him!"

"Yes, you are! You're going to school, Samuel!"

"No, I'm not!" Sam cried angrily. "I've been gone for weeks, what does a few more days matter?" he demanded.

"Because they do. I already called the school, explained why you were missing. I told them you were coming, and you're going, you hear me?" John snapped.

"No! I'm staying here with Dean!" Sam protested.

"You're going to school, Samuel, and that's an order!" John yelled.

"Am not!"

"Sammy," Dean's voice, though weak and far quieter than the other two's, still got both of their attentions. It was a little strange for him to see the expressions on their faces go from anger and frustration to worried and concerned. It was almost amusing to him. "You should listen to Dad, you should go to school." Dean said.

"What? No way! I'm staying home with you! I want to help Dad with the research, I can help! And I can help you, too, with the physical therapy and stuff. And I can stay with you so you don’t get bored, and…"

"Sammy," Dean stopped his little brother, raising his hand a little. He leaned against the wall, shaking his head when his father gave him a worried look. "Look, you've gotta go to school." he said.

"Why?" Sam demanded. "Because he ordered me to?" he narrowed his eyes in anger, ready for the next round.

"No." Dean said calmly. "You have to go for three reasons." He said, "First, you're a geek. You've been outside your natural habitat for too long, who knows how long you can survive without some books around and some homework and tests to study for?" Dean said seriously, and then smirked. Sam seemed less than amused.

"You think it's funny?" he demanded. Dean shrugged. "I can make it all up later, I've already missed so much, another few days won't matter! I'm staying!" Sam insisted.

"Well, that brings us to reason number two." Dean said quickly, holding up two fingers and not giving John the chance to argue. Sam crossed his hands over his chest, waiting. "Look, Sammy," Dean sighed, "Dad's right about this. You've been gone too long. You've missed nearly a month. People are already asking questions, they're gonna give you a hard time as it is. Do you really want social services to get involved in this? You really think now is the time for that?" Dean demanded, "Do you really think Dad should have to deal with that, too, right now?" Sam blinked a couple of times, suddenly feeling very foolish. Of course they didn’t need social services around, not now. Sam knew how worried their father had been lately, how hard he must have worked just to keep calm and level headed, how difficult it had been for him. For all of them. It didn’t change the fact that he wanted, needed, to stay with Dean. That he needed to know his brother was alright, to be able to go into their room and just see him breathe, to know he was still alive.


"And third, and most important, I might add," Dean added quickly, and Sam looked up at him. "You have got to go back to school so you could grovel before Linda Sinclair, or you'll never get to third base with her, and that's downright embarrassing, man. I mean, you're my brother, you know, I have a reputation to protect here." Dean said seriously. He broke into a grin at the shocked look on his little brother's face, ignoring his father's groan. "A man needs priorities, you know." Dean added with a smirk and Sam rolled his eyes.

"You're sick. Seriously, man, you're sick." He said.

"I know. That's why I get to stay home and annoy the crap out of Dad. But you're not, so you get to go to school and get yourself a date with a hot chick. Or, you know, Linda." Dean smirked again. Sam scowled at him.

"Fine." He spat out eventually. "But you stay in bed and rest, you hear me? And if anything happens, anything, you come get me from school, okay?" he demanded.

"Nothing's gonna happen, Sammy." Dean promised.

"Okay?" Sam insisted.

"Yes, fine. I'll come get you." John promised. "Now go, I don’t want you to be late." He added. Sam gave Dean another long look before going back to their room to grab his schoolbag and going to school.

"How are you doing, kiddo?" John asked, leaning against the wall next to his oldest.

"Hungry. And I really have to use the bathroom." Dean said. John smiled.

"I'll go make you breakfast. Get back in bed."

"You're gonna serve me breakfast in bed?" Dean raised a brow.

"That a problem?" John asked with a small smile. Dean shrugged.

"Nope. Just wish you were a hot woman, is all." He said. John laughed.

"I'm glad to see you're feeling better today." He said.

"Yeah, Dad, about that, there's something I need to tell you…"


Where it all started >> 2 >> 3 >> 4 >> 5 >> 6 >> 7 

Tags: , , , , , , ,
Current Mood: happy happy
Current Music: why don't you and I - Santana

7 comments or Leave a comment
(Deleted comment)
sams1ra From: sams1ra Date: March 31st, 2007 02:33 pm (UTC) (Link)
Not exactly sure what you meant by remote control, but you'll definitely understand the meaning of the salt later on.
Glad you enjoyed the Dean/Sam moment =)
idiot4dean From: idiot4dean Date: March 31st, 2007 02:10 pm (UTC) (Link)
Glad Dean's out of hospital. Wondering where you're going with the unknown tattoo/brand that reacts to salt.

Great scene with Dean getting Sam to go back to school. Two practical reasons and one true Dean reason.

Looking forward to more.
sams1ra From: sams1ra Date: March 31st, 2007 02:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thanks. I'm glad you liked the Dean/Sam moment =)
arianstarr From: arianstarr Date: March 31st, 2007 03:20 pm (UTC) (Link)
sams1ra From: sams1ra Date: March 31st, 2007 03:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thank you =D
(Deleted comment)
sams1ra From: sams1ra Date: March 31st, 2007 04:36 pm (UTC) (Link)
You've got that right =) Things don't look well for our boy, do they? (evil grin)
7 comments or Leave a comment