Disclaimer: If anyone owns anything in this relationship, Supernatural owns my heart. And won't give it back. And won't pay me for it.
Word count: 1225
Summary: “If you make another ‘humerus’ joke, so help me I’m going to break your jaw."
Author notes: Fic is based on a bit of dream from this morning. In my waking hours, I've got a mild incest squick, but apparently my subconscious thinks Sam and Dean are sweet...which they are...garh. Thanks always to excellent beta, fandom obsession buddy and best friend lavinialavender. This fic isn't so much FOR her as it's ALL HER FAULT.
* * *
Dean refuses to take the blame for Sam’s broken arm.
Sure, probably Sam only tried out for the stupid football team because Dean kept telling him he was too much of a girly girl to make it in, and certainly he and Dean argued enough before the trials that maybe Sam’s concentration wasn’t 100 percent, but Dean did not trip him, so it isn’t his fault. The only reason that the jackass responsible for the broken humerus is still breathing is that Dean was too busy getting his brother to the nurse and then the hospital and then home with the big honking cast wrapped over his forearm to hunt his ass down.
Probably the guy is halfway out of the state by now. People in their current stupid hick high school might mock Sam Winchester, the gawky freshman, but no one messes with Dean.
Dean settles on the couch, where Sam is slouched with his cast settled against his chest in that really stupid looking sling. “So, where did the king keep his armies?” he asks, offering Sam a Sprite. Ever since he got over the immediate panic of seeing Sam hit the ground, hard, hearing the bone-snap he’s all too familiar with, he’s been having a field day with the arm-related puns.
Sam glares but takes the soda. “Just shut up, Dean.”
“Awww, Sammy, why so grim? I mean, you’re already plastered. It’s like you—“
“If you make another ‘humerus’ joke, so help me I’m going to break your jaw,” Sam says, in the exact same tone he’s been using all day. He downs the soda in one pull and then slams it on the side table. “You were right, okay, I shouldn’t have fucking gone out for the team, it was a stupid idea and now when Dad gets home—“
“Hey, hey, hey! Not what I was going to say.”
Sure, Dean’s been needling him since the hospital, but the point was to get Sam to stop feeling sorry and miserable for himself, not to, well, say, “I told you so.” Because, like many things Dean has said or done to Sam, they weren’t because he thinks he’s right or Sam’s wrong, but because sometimes he just has to prove that his little brother is there, not checked out, not drifting off somewhere like Dad does, or planning to leave, again. Dean can’t take it if Sam leaves again, he can’t, and the only way to prove that Sam is still with him is, sometimes, to make him yell.
He’d like to think that that’s the reason Dad pisses Sam off so badly too, but he doesn’t think that’s it. Dad’s not around enough either to really justify the reaction.
“Yeah, then what are you trying to say?” Sam puts his one free hand, the one not encased in plaster, over his eyes. “I should be used to it by now. Sam Winchester, brainy freak. Sam Winchester, world-class fuck-up.”
Dean pauses. And then, because there’s nothing he can say to that, nothing Sam will believe, he falls back on what he’s always done.
“Dude, don’t think too highly of yourself,” he says. “You’re a county-class fuck-up for sure, state-level maybe, but world? Nah.” He scoots closer on the couch and throws a long arm over Sam’s shoulders—carefully, mindful of the sling and the plaster and the arm, and the way Sam keeps his head turned away from him, like he doesn’t want Dean to see what’s really on his face because then it could possibly drive Dean away from him. “You’re my baby brother and the least fucked up of the Winchesters. You don’t get that prize. It’s a cold, sad truth, I know, but you’re just going to have to learn to live with it.”
Sam snorts, almost a laugh, but he faces Dean again, a smile in his eyes, lips quirked. “Jerk.”
“Bitch.” Dean leans in and kisses Sam on the corner of his mouth, right where it twists into something like a smile, but not quite. He tastes the salt and the heat and feels Sam’s mouth relax into his, closed but not twisted any more, neither brittle nor angry.
This is a new thing they have, and they’re going slow, each step moving toward something neither of them wants to think about. Each step because they need each other so much that they can’t, within reason, without heartbreak, pull away.
They just stop like that, Dean’s mouth on Sam’s, his arm over his shoulders, somehow Sam’s good hand up by his throat. It’s like long silences in the Impala when they have nothing to say but the not-saying of it speaks worlds. It’s like the smooth reaction they have when a ghost attacks or some idiot thinks that the new kids at the high school are fair game. It’s a unity and a connection that they’ve stopped fighting because it’s the only real thing, the only thing they can be sure of that’s theirs and they get to keep, that either of them has really had.
Dean breaks the moment first. He usually does, because these are dangerous things, no knowing where they will lead. “Can I sign your cast?”
Sam laughs, a real laugh this time. “Sure,” he says, taking a Sharpie out of his jean pocket. “Knock yourself out.”
Dean uncaps the pen and carefully—tongue sticking out of his mouth because it makes Sam roll his eyes and mutter under his breath—writes his name. He takes his time, marks out DEAN WINCHESTER in fat bubble letters that take up the entire side of the cast and wrap partway around.
“Leave some room for Santa, why don’t you?” Sam mutters, looking down at his mostly blacked-out cast, and then sighs. “I guess it’s not like I have any friends who are going to want to sign it.”
“You’ve got me,” Dean points out.
Sam could make a joke or roll his eyes, or otherwise fall back to the Winchester default, but he smiles again, simply and honestly—without any of the usual Winchester layers—so that Dean can’t make any mistake about what he sees.“Yeah, I’ve got you.”
This time, when Dean kisses him, Sam closes his eyes and opens his mouth and holds still, like he’s trying a new flavor and wants to fix it perfectly in his head. When they break apart to breathe, Dean has his hand on Sam’s neck and Sam’s eyes are still smiling. They still have that silence between them.
Dean kisses down Sam’s throat, pushing his shirt over his shoulders as he goes—still careful of that sling, gonna kill that fucker—and Sam shivers a little bit with every touch. When Dean brings the permanent marker around to Sam’s back, his brother huffs a little bit, mutters, “Jerk” under his breath, but leans into Dean’s shoulder, into his hands.
Dean writes DEAN WINCHESTER, in blocky, wiggly letters—he loves to feel Sam breathe, but it’s hard to keep the pen steady down his back—and then adds, “ ‘s little brother” crawling down his spine.
He’s just started “Best Winchester in the world” across Sam’s ribs when his brother curves his head around and bites at his neck.
“Writing a sonnet?” he asks.
“It’s probably dirty.”
“Is there any other kind?”
And here they are, in a new kind of silence. A good one.