Intermission

Fic title: Do You Want the Truth or Something Beautiful?

Author name: vampireifurita

Artist name: mulanreflection

Genre: Gen, Wincest

Pairing: Dean/Sam, some background Castiel/Sam, Castiel/Crowley

Rating: R

Word count: 26,732

Warnings: horror, disturbing imagery, violence

Summary: After Sam sacrificed himself to save the world; Dean had gone to Lisa just as he’d been asked. Things had been just fine until he started hearing music that no one else could hear and things just go downhill from there. With no one to turn to, bear witness to man lost at sea, in the throes of grief and unexplainable music that haunts him much like the memories of his brother.

----------

Intermission

She didn’t know what she had expected when he had shown up at her door over a month ago, but it certainly wasn’t what she was dealing with now. There was something very wrong with him. Something had been broken deep down in his soul, and she was starting to realize she couldn’t ever think of fixing it.

In the beginning it had seemed that whatever was plaguing him might let him be free eventually, he had made great strides of improvement from the shell of a man on the foot of her steps to the man who had been living with her for two weeks. He had set his bag down by the door and had stepped over the threshold, heaving a great sigh. She had wrapped him in her arms, and had held him tight as silent sobs wracked his body. She hadn’t had the faintest clue as to what was wrong with him, but it was clear to her that he would be staying for a while.

She had picked up his bag and taken him to her bedroom, and laid him in her bed. She had sent her son to his room and made sure that he was asleep before rejoining the broken man in her bed. He had looked at her, and she had only seen how shattered he was in that moment, how much like a little boy he was inside. She had wrapped him in her arms and stayed up with him all night, listening to him apologize to someone who wasn’t even there.

When morning had broken, it was as if it had never happened. He deflected all her questions and closed himself off from her emotionally. A part of her knew that this was what would happen, but part of her was sad that he wouldn’t confide in her. But the small smile he had forced on his face when she made him breakfast was worth the slight setback.

That night, he had given her exactly what she hadn’t known she needed. His hands were gentle but firm, and while he didn’t say her name, she knew that she was the one to hold him after it was done. It seemed to sooth him, to settle some part of him that had been unsure. She hadn’t thought much of it at the time, so long as he stayed with her, she didn’t quite care what made him decide to do it. She didn’t learn how wrong she was until it ended.

In the morning she cleared out two drawers in her dresser for him. He put all of his clothes into one. He had frowned then and turned to look at her before lowering his gaze. He asked for some space in the closet instead, hoping to treat his other clothes the best that he could. She had told him it was a perfectly reasonable request and that she wouldn’t mind giving him a few hangers and a little space. He had given her a small smile and told her he was going to grab his other bag from the Impala. She smiled and said she’d be waiting for him right here with open closet space and hangers to spare.

The second set of clothing was much too big for him and she instantly realized what had happened. It hit her like a ton of bricks, the knowledge weighing her down, smothering any happiness she had felt at his arrival. Something terrible indeed had made him flee to her open, waiting arms. Something had broken this man’s spirit and she knew exactly what it was. She wanted to reach out and fold him into her arms, wanted to comfort him in the way that only a woman could, but she knew that he would only deny that he was in pain. He was a stubborn man, and she would be lucky if some day, years into the future, if he finally admitted what drove him into her arms.

She surreptitiously snuck out of the room as he reverently took the clothes out of the worn old duffle bag. She leaned against the wall outside of her room and looked in as he started to meticulously fold the overly large clothes. He took extra care with a blue shirt than he had with the rest, and she thought that perhaps it had a special meaning to him. He took his clothes laden hangers, the blue shirt resting on her bed, and hung them in the closet.

He sat on the edge of the bed and picked up the shirt he had left there. He brought it up to his face and inhaled. Her heart broke for him in that moment, distraught that this was all he had left of the brother who had been at his side for a lifetime. Placing the shirt back on the bed, he had pulled off his own shirt and slipped the blue shirt on. Balling up his own shirt, he tossed it in the direction of the hamper. She quickly slid out of the hallway and down the stairs, not wanting to be caught having witnessed him at his weakest moment.

In the following days she introduced him to the rest of her household, hoping to familiarize him with his new surroundings, but more often than not he would sit by the window and watch as the world passed him by.

It took her over a week to lure him outside. Once outside though, after moving his baby into the garage and covering her, he didn’t want to come back inside. He mowed her lawn and took it upon himself to make her yard the envy of the neighborhood. He pulled out the weeds in her garden, he mulched around her trees, and he even repainted her birdhouse one day. The tedious, exhausting yard work seemed to be doing him good. He had opened up to her, both emotionally and physically, and he had taken a real shine to Ben. The two of them spent evenings out in the backyard tossing a ball, or just sitting looking at the stars or talking about girls in the living room. She had truly started to believe that he would get over the death of his brother, and then the strange behavior started.

It started one day, just over three weeks in to his joining her family. He just wasn’t home when she and Ben returned from their daily toils. The car had been gone, and she had panicked. Thinking that he had left her, or had gone off in a terrible fit of sorrow to end his existence, she had a slight panic attack. She grabbed her phone to call him, only to realize she didn’t have his number. She went to the neighbors to see if they had seen him, but they all told her the same thing: he took the car out in the afternoon. When he showed up at her door at nearly midnight she had grabbed onto him and had never wanted to let go.

He had been nothing short of passionate with her that night.

Then there had been the incident with the radio. For the life of her she couldn’t figure out what had possessed him to destroy her radio. She didn’t understand why he thought it hadn’t been turning off, when that had been what had woken her before her alarm that morning.

That afternoon he had gone for a drive and in a seeming fit of rage had tossed his phone into the trees. It had taken him over an hour to find it in the trees, and then it was only to discover that he had pretty much destroyed it. He hadn’t made it home until one in the morning, refusing to tell her what had happened or where he had gone. All she could do was frown and offer him the only consolation he would accept.

It was after that incident that he had started to drink. It hadn’t been bad at first, but it seemed like something just pushed him over the edge and then suddenly he was drinking whiskey in broad daylight and chasing it down with gin. She had been lenient about it, understanding that he had needed something to dull the pain, but it didn’t take long for him to step over the line.

She had come back early one day since Ben had a half day and she didn’t want him to be alone with him since he was drinking. Departing work at 11:15 got her home just as Ben did, and together they had entered the house. And there he had been, sprawled out on the couch, an empty bottle in his hand. Ben had gone over to him before she could stop him, and kicked his leg. He had shot straight up, bewildered about what was going on. Ben had just frowned at him, clearly disappointed by this reaction. She sent him up to his room, telling him she would try to sober him up.

Fifteen minutes later she decided to just let him stay in the living room. He just wouldn’t leave. So she went upstairs to take a shower. When she came back downstairs ten minutes later she could only stare. The radio was off, the TV as well, and yet there he was, dancing around and singing to a song that was only in his head. It scared her to think that he might have gone over the edge. If he was starting to hallucinate music, it couldn’t be long before he would think he saw other things that weren’t there. How long would it be before he started to see the creatures he used to hunt? What would happen if his delusions made him think that they were creatures as well? Would he hunt them down?

She had gone upstairs and told her son to go out for the day, find his friends and spend time together. He had merely rolled his eyes and told her that he probably wasn’t going to sober up any time soon.

That evening he had gone too far. She had spent the remainder of the day helping him sober up, but apparently hadn’t done a very good job of it. He had gone up to tell Ben to turn down the music, and suddenly he was bursting through the door and throwing things at her son’s wall. It frightened her to think of what he could do, what kind of threat he would be posing if he could do these sorts of things without batting an eye. She may love him, but she did not want to be putting herself and more importantly her son at risk just for a man.

She had spent so much of her life waiting for this man. This man who had come into her life so suddenly, who had left just as quick. She hadn’t expected to feel this way for a man who had been just a one night stand. But as the years had passed, and she had settled down into her life as a mother, the idea of this man had become her favorite fantasy. Maybe that was all he had really been: a fantasy. She had never really talked to him, hadn’t really known him outside of bed, but she had known she wanted him.

Over the eight years they had been apart she had developed quite the fantasy. He would appear just as suddenly as he had before, he would sweep her off her feet with that debonair charm he had worked on her before, and the two of them would settle down into the life she had always hoped for.

Their next meeting didn’t go as planned, some crazy, impossible stuff came between them, but he had proven to her that her fantasies weren’t unfounded. He had indeed swept her off her feet with charm and had even saved her precious son. And then he was gone. Just as soon as he was back into her life, he was out of it.

It was only two years between their next visit, but even then it was enough for her to worry about him. This man who had saved them, who had saved countless others was planning something reckless and there was nothing she could say to stop him. She could only hope that whatever he was thinking of doing would not come to pass.

Shortly after, a broken man had come to her door. He had seemed so hollow, so empty of life, and she couldn’t help but take him in.

She had said her final goodbyes that morning, telling him she couldn’t allow him to stay here unless he got some help, but he wouldn’t agree to her terms. So he packed up his things, a mere two duffle bags worth of clothing. He looked so sad when he got to the door, so upset that it had come to this. “I’m sorry,” was all he said before he shut the door on their brief life together.

Tears flooded her vision, and her heart clenched as she heard the Impala roar to life. She made her way into the living room to watch him go.

The garden he had worked so hard on in the beginning had started to wilt, the ground hardening and the flowers drying out; she wasn’t sure she could fix it on her own. There was almost too much work for one person, and she wondered how he had managed to do as much as he had in the time he was here.

The stereo clicked on and she inserted a CD. Just for today she would feel sorry for herself, this would be the only time that she would mourn that which never was, and what never would be. Billy Holiday flooded the speakers, drawing out her inner pain. She sat heavily on the couch, letting the sound wash over her.

~All that I’ve know about happiness

I’ve found just being with you

Then I would find myself losing my mind

Over some careless thing you would do

Oh I cannot forget you

I know so well what is in store

A moment or two up in the clouds with you

Then back where I was before

No I don’t want to cry anymore. ~


Chapter 8

I, Manface

Fic title: Do You Want the Truth or Something Beautiful?

Author name: vampireifurita

Artist name: mulanreflection

Genre: Gen, Wincest

Pairing: Dean/Sam, some background Castiel/Sam, Castiel/Crowley

Rating: R

Word count: 26,732

Warnings: horror, disturbing imagery, violence

Summary: After Sam sacrificed himself to save the world; Dean had gone to Lisa just as he’d been asked. Things had been just fine until he started hearing music that no one else could hear and things just go downhill from there. With no one to turn to, bear witness to man lost at sea, in the throes of grief and unexplainable music that haunts him much like the memories of his brother.

-------

It was almost like before, a motel room with two twin beds, and sitting at the little table eating breakfast with his brother. The laptop was open and Sam was pouring over whatever case he had found for them. He sat across from the giant in the rickety wooden chair, sipping his black coffee and shoving a doughnut into his mouth.

“What’ve you got Sam?” he asked after he had swallowed both doughnut and a drought of coffee. Sam didn’t even acknowledge his question. Frowning, he pushed the screen of the laptop down a little to look his brother in the eye, only to stare into empty bleeding sockets. Startled out of his chair, he backed away from the table, horrified.

“What’s your problem Dean?” Sam asked, brow furrowed, hazel eyes staring at him. Blinking, Dean cautiously approached the table. Reaching out, he tried to touch Sam’s eye, but got eyelid instead, but an eye was definitely underneath that lid. “What the hell dude?”

“Sorry …” he trailed off, righting his chair and sitting down again.

“Whatever. I found us a hunt a couple states over. Looks like a simple haunting, but get this…” Sam droned on and Dean only half listened to the various reasons they were going to rush over there and fix this problem. He was trying to reconcile what he had just seen with what was actually going on.

~ Before you know, I’m swept away

Watching my shadow eat off my plate ~

“Son of a bitch!” he yelled. Sam’s startled eyes bore into his wide, frightened eyes.

“Dean? Dean, ignore it,” Sam was saying, his cheeks steadily hallowing out as his body started to shrivel up. He backed away in fear until his back hit the wall and he was falling.

He woke up on the floor of his motel room.

~And I went to sleep the shell of a man,

I woke up the same to I slept in again. ~

“Son of a bitch!” he cursed, his throat as dry and raw as a piece of sandpaper. He stumbled into the bathroom and emptied the contents of his stomach into the toilet bowl. Clutching at the porcelain he tried to reconcile reality. Just a dream, it was just a horrible dream.

A knock at the door startled him out of his thoughts. He turned to look at his concerned brother.

“Dude what the hell? Did you drink too much last night? I thought that was impossible for you,” he said and moved to help him up. Holding on to his brother for support, he brushed his teeth and rinsed the taste of bile out of his mouth. “Come on big guy; let’s get you back in bed.”

~These eyes went bad trying to see lies

Got him drunk and I fell on the knife. ~

Squinting at his brother he tried to discern reality from delusion. Sam merely looked at him in return, tugging him over to his bed. As he was shoved down to sit on the lumpy mattress he noticed Sam’s hands, his white sickly hands. One of those hands ran across his cheek, the gesture meaning to be soothing but ending up making him feel sick. He tried to lean away from those hands, but they followed him, freezing his skin, feeling like the pricks of hundreds of pins. His side ached, the injury from the other night flaring up.

~Before you know these days are gone

A roman candle fired at dawn. ~

Sam coaxed him into lying down and it was all he could do to comply. He kept one eye on the window to the parking lot, watching vigilantly for a roman candle being set off. This song… this insane music was thrumming in his head, and it was nowhere near calming. This was starting to sound just as insane as…

“Dean?” Sam asked. Turning towards his brother, he noticed that the late night news was on. Snapping his head to the side to look out the window, the sky had turned almost black. The lights from cars on the highway zipped by, tiny fireflies zooming past one another trying to speed up the journey home. “Dude you alright?”

Nodding his head, but afraid to open his mouth to reply, he turned back to the television. A procedural cop drama was on. There was a dead body on the street. Those cops were the only people who could bring the killer to justice.

Squirming down the bed, and ignoring the way Sam’s side of the room had started to raise in temperature, light flickering against the wall, he resolutely closed his eyes to try to sleep. A burning hand brushed against his temple and sticky lips pressed against his cheek. “Night Dean.” The lingering feel of sticky wetness stuck with him all night long.

An explosion woke him in the morning. Darting from the bed, he rushed over to the window. Some kid was setting off fireworks. Disregarding his appearance, he stormed outside to confront him. Grabbing the kid’s shoulder, he turned him around, and came face to face with Sam. Eyes wide, he backed away from the crooked smile on that face, something in his brother’s appearance disturbing and skewed.

“How did you like that wake up call, inventive right?” Same asked, stalking after him as he backed into the open motel room. He was herded back to bed and fell on it when pushed.

~It was accidently discovered

You had cold blood running through your veins. ~

Hazel eyes bled into yellow and he tried not to shrink away from the hands pressing into his bed. The temperature in the room skyrocketed and he tried to gasp in a breath, valiantly trying not to hyperventilate. One enormous hand slid across the bedspread and up his side. It slid up his torso to rest at his collarbone. He could feel the searing hot flesh through his shirt and gasped at the feeling.

“I’m burning for you.” His eyes snapped to the flickering yellow above his. He wanted to reach out, wanted to touch, to reassure, but he could not as those eyes continued to shift. Those hands ran over his body, forcing him to arch away from their burning touch, which only served to upset the man above him. Hands fisted in his shirt and pulled him upright.

He was hauled out of the bed and tossed around the room. He bumped into the table, knocked over a chair and connected with the wall. A searing hot body was pressed against his back. Scorching hands pinned him in place while feet kicked his legs apart.

“Now who’s the bitch?” He struggled against the hold on him, assessing the situation. He snapped his head back without a thought, crashing into the taller man’s face, stunning him. Twisting in the hold on him, he turned around and pushed at the bigger man. When he gained some space he made a break for the door.

“I don’t think so Dean. Don’t think a simple head butt will keep you out of my grasp,” Sam’s cold, impersonal voice said. Hands grabbed him and swung him around towards the window. Barely catching the cocking of his brother’s fist, he ducked out of the way as Sam swung towards his face.

Glass shattered, blood flew, and the room instantly chilled. Frost covered the windowpane, and the blood pooling on the sill was starting to ice. Breathing ragged, his breathe fogged in the air.

~When you cut your punch on a broken window

And the blood froze like frost on the shattered pane

And you had a hunger growing inside you

That only bloodlust could ever fulfill~

“I told you that I didn’t burn hot, didn’t I?”

Eyes widening, knees giving out, he could only stare at the monster before him.

“Lucifer.”

“Indeed Dean. I hope you know that I’ve been waiting for this for a while now. It’s not that I have strong feelings against you; it’s just that it’s the principal of the thing. You helped lock me up again. You must understand that I cannot let that pass without recompense.”

Shuddering as that hulking figure approached him menacingly, he shrank away from his brother for what seemed like the first time. But this steely, unfeeling creature was not his brother, this was the root of all evil: Lucifer himself.

“Sam, please Sam…” was all that came out of his mouth as he was bodily picked up from the ground. He couldn’t find it in him to fight back as the devil moved him back to the bed. He was dropped limply onto the mattress, well aware that there was nothing he could do to save himself. All he could do at this moment was hope that Sam could regain control.

Frozen hazel eyes flickered as Sam’s hulking figure climbed on top of him. Massive hands trembled, breath shuddered, and teeth grit. Just looking at the devil made him realized that his brother was in there somewhere, trying to fight his way to the surface once more.

“Come on Sammy, come back to me,” reaching up a shivering hand, he touched freezing skin. He let his hand cup his brother’s cheek, caressing his jaw. His thumb ran over purple lips, smoothing over the silky flesh. His other hand wrapped around the back of his brother’s neck, spurred on by the lack of retaliation. Pulling his brother down, he pressed his lips to his brother’s.

Green eyes bore into hazel, hoping against hope that he would be able to recognize the change, or at least know there was no hope before it was crushed by the reality of the situation. Ever so slightly, so lightly that he wasn’t sure that it was actually occurring, the lips pressed against his returned the pressure. Eyes sliding shut in bliss; he tangled his hands in long chocolate hair and let his lips slide against Sam’s.

It took a few moments, but soon his brother was opening his mouth, and kissing him just as passionately as he was kissing him. Tongues glided against one another and ran over teeth. Taste buds flared with the familiar taste of brother and his head started to swim. It had been so long….

The sudden lack of his brother’s presence popped his eyes open. Sam stood before the mirror, staring at himself, unblinking.

“Sam?”

“I’m a monster Dean,” was all Sam said.

“No you’re not. All that? That was Lucifer, not you Sam,” he sat up straight and moved to his brother’s side, placing a hand on the small of his back.

“Lucifer burns cold Dean; half the things I did to you were when I was burning hot. Those things were all me.”

“No they weren’t Sam. You couldn’t control it. It wasn’t you, your eyes were yellow.”

“That just proves it Dean.”

“It doesn’t prove anything!” he shouted, desperate to deny any lie that fell from Sam’s mouth.

“We both know that I have demon blood in me Dean, blood that came from the Yellow Eyed Demon.”

“But you couldn’t help that! It happened when you were still a baby!”

“You said it yourself Dean, that you would kill me if I wasn’t your brother, that I am a monster.”

Stunned speechless he could only stare open mouthed at his brother.

“I tried so hard to make it right, to fix the world I’ve broken, but I haven’t fixed anything, have I?”

~You extricated yourself from the jungle

To try and temper that instinct to kill~

Sam’s hands came up from hanging at his sides and wrapped loosely around his neck.

“This is the only way.”

“Sam!” He shouted to the empty room. Frantic eyes searched the room for his brother. He wasn’t behind him, he wasn’t in the bathroom, and looking out of the pristine window, he could tell that he wasn’t outside of the hotel room. The second twin bed was still made and there was no sign that his brother had ever been here with him. He was alone.

Standing in front of the mirror, looking back at himself through the glass, he could see the hopeless despair in his eyes. The black circles under his eyes belied how little sleep he had been getting and his haggard appearance gave away how little he cared about himself now. He rubbed his hands over his face, letting them slide down to his neck, massaging the skin there.

The music started up again.

~Buried deep in the hot, hot sand

A portrait of your mother

Take those hands and kill that man

Standing in the mirror~

His hands tightened around his throat and he didn’t let go until he dropped unconscious to the floor.


Chapter 9

Hurt

Fic title: Do You Want the Truth or Something Beautiful?

Author name: vampireifurita

Artist name: mulanreflection

Genre: Gen, Wincest

Pairing: Dean/Sam, some background Castiel/Sam, Castiel/Crowley

Rating: R

Word count: 26,732

Warnings: horror, disturbing imagery, violence

Summary: After Sam sacrificed himself to save the world; Dean had gone to Lisa just as he’d been asked. Things had been just fine until he started hearing music that no one else could hear and things just go downhill from there. With no one to turn to, bear witness to man lost at sea, in the throes of grief and unexplainable music that haunts him much like the memories of his brother.

-----------

~I hurt myself today, to see if I still feel

I focus on the pain, the only thing that’s real. ~

The door to the motel room smashed into the wall. He couldn’t bring himself to care. The wall ended up smeared with blood as he supported himself against it. He kicked the door shut and flicked on the light.

Perhaps that case hadn’t been his smartest idea, not that he was acting all that smart lately. He had felt the overwhelming need to go out, to do something with himself. He had thought that perhaps if he had gone back to what he had always done, that he would feel more like himself, instead he ended up feeling pain. Hazel eyes glared at him from the second bed as he passed, dripping blood on the carpet.

The bathroom was an obnoxiously bright white. Of course it was, the one time he paid for a good room, at a decent hotel, he ended up being unable to deal with the cleanliness. He instantly missed the filthy confines of every shithole motel he had ever had the unfortunate pleasure of staying in. This sanitized whiteness was doing nothing to soothe his raging nerves.

A figure stood in the doorway, hulking form blocking out the light from the main room. The deep seated disappointment radiating from the giant in the doorway washed over him, causing him to buckle over, grabbing onto the sink for support. Blood gushed from between his lips, splattering the sink with red. Droplets fell onto the linoleum covered floor; his fingers pushed the sticky red of his life over the counter. Lifting his eyes to the mirror to survey the damage to his face, his eyes caught on the torn and bloody figure standing behind him.

In comparison to the wounds on his brother’s body, he was perfectly healthy. His brother’s skin was torn and frayed, barely hanging on to his body in some places. Blood was pooling beneath his feet, spreading onto the linoleum floor of the bathroom. The life of his most precious person was oozing out of him at an alarming rate.

He whirled around to grab onto him, but there was nothing there. The swiftness of his movement disoriented him, and he collapsed on the floor. His ankle got wrenched in the fall, and the wound to his stomach stretched to new lengths.

~What have I become, my sweetest friend?

Everyone I know goes away in the end. ~

He chuckled, the music unbidden coming to him. Of course the music was coming to him. There was no way that the music would ever stop. He would be hearing these damned songs until the end of his days, and if he was lucky they wouldn’t follow him into the hereafter. It was inescapable, these vicious lyrics. No matter how far he went, no matter what he did, these songs continued to haunt him.

~And you can have it all, my empire of dirt

I will let you down, I will make you hurt. ~

She crossed his mind this time, the only time since he had left. He would leave it all to her, everything that he was. All his worldly possessions would be hers when he finally died. Knowing his luck, his mental state, and his general lack of self preservation, it wouldn’t be long before his baby was once again in her driveway, taking up space in her life. He had broken his promise (of course he had, a vicious part of himself snapped, if Sammy had really known him, he never would have suggested it) and had broken her heart. He had probably crushed her spirit, in his complete neglect, and he didn’t want to think about what he had done to the boy. That was all he was worth now, the pain of knowing him and the car he drove. His soul was in hell after all, nothing of his spirit remained in this empty world.

~If I could start again, a million miles away

I would keep myself, I would find a way. ~

Perhaps he could have found another way. Maybe there had been another option. If he had done something different, perhaps Sam would be here with him. If he had kept in touch when Sam had gone to Stanford, or if he had gone with his brother, then he would have never met Jessica, and she would have never burned on the ceiling of their apartment. If he hadn’t let his brother get brainwashed by that demonic bitch, if he hadn’t thrown away the amulet… there were just so many things he could have done differently. If he had made different choices, reacted differently to things, perhaps Sam would still be here.

His head thudded against the porcelain of the sink, focusing him on what was happening right that moment. He really couldn’t keep going like this. The memories alone would kill him, but the music was like pouring salt in his wounds. He couldn’t die, because then he would be in the same situation, the same pain for all of eternity. Then he had an epiphany and a plan was made.


Chapter 10

Break Even

Fic title: Do You Want the Truth or Something Beautiful?

Author name: vampireifurita

Artist name: mulanreflection

Genre: Gen, Wincest

Pairing: Dean/Sam, some background Castiel/Sam, Castiel/Crowley

Rating: R

Word count: 26,732

Warnings: horror, disturbing imagery, violence

Summary: After Sam sacrificed himself to save the world; Dean had gone to Lisa just as he’d been asked. Things had been just fine until he started hearing music that no one else could hear and things just go downhill from there. With no one to turn to, bear witness to man lost at sea, in the throes of grief and unexplainable music that haunts him much like the memories of his brother.

---------

It was a bar like any other. Just another place to hustle poor schmucks out of their hard earned cash. Sure it was flooded with college students, it was a college bar after all, but nothing had made him feel better.

“This will not help you,” that annoyingly calm voice told him as the trench coated angel pulled up a stool beside his own.

“I don’t know what you’re talking about, I’m here to earn some cash off these gullible young people,” he retorted, taking a sip from his beer.

“You act as if I do not understand what you are doing,” the angel replied, ordering a beer from the friendly waitress as she sauntered by, shamelessly flirting with the blue eyed menace. “I understand very well what it feels like to have lost…”

“Don’t even think of finishing that sentence,” he interrupted. “I don’t want to hear it. You don’t know shit Cas.”

“You act as if their loss means nothing to me; Bobby was my friend and Sam…” Castiel started to say. He covered the angel’s mouth with his hand, glaring blackest death at him.

“Don’t say his name,” he growled. “Don’t you dare say his fucking name! You don’t know two shits about what I’m feeling, and you will never understand!”

Cas pushed the hand off his mouth. “How do you think I felt when I found out my father had abandoned us? Do you think I felt nothing? Sam was my friend, he was special.”

“Fuck, I’m not doing this with you,” he said, slamming down his beer on the table. He almost knocked over his chair in his haste to stand. He pushed his way through the crowd towards the door.

It took him mere minutes to get to his car, but the angel was already there, waiting for him. Cursing up a storm, he unlocked the door and got in. He ignored the piteous look he was getting from the angel in the back seat and just kept his eyes on the road. Freaking angel didn’t know anything.

Out of the corner of his eye he caught sight of a familiar figure sitting in the passenger seat. Head leaning against the glass but tilted towards him, legs splayed wide, taking up every bit of space possible. Taking a deep breath, he made sure to keep his eyes on the road, and didn’t turn to look at neither his phantom passenger nor the angel in the back seat.

“I know this is hard for you,” Cas said softly, breaking the silence. “But it really does help to have someone to confide in.”

He scoffed. “Is that what you did Cas? Who’d you talk to, huh? God?”

Cas’ brow furrowed. “God does not speak to anyone Dean.”

“Damn right he doesn’t. Son of a bitch was willing to let the world burn,” he growled. A hand on his neck stopped him from saying anything else.

“I know that you have never believed in my father, and that he has given you no reason to, but I will not tolerate blasphemy.”

“Jesus Cas, seriously? After everything he’s not done, you’re still willing to defend him?” he adjusted his neck so that it was easier for him to breathe.

“He is still my father,” was the angel’s answer. His face contorted into something distasteful for a moment, knowing that he had once had that kind of faith in his father. It made him wonder where his own faith had gone.

“So who the hell have you been talking to?” he asked, curiosity getting the better of him as they pulled up in front of his motel. The hand eased off his neck and when he turned to look, the angel was gone. “Fine, don’t answer my question. Fuck you very much Cas.”

He clambered out of the car, pulling the key to his room out of his pocket, mindful of the shadow that followed him. This was his life now, empty rooms with no hope of reprieve. Nights spent alone, drunken days and the occasional nagging of a high and mighty angel, what a farce.

~I’m still alive but I’m barely breathing,

Just praying to a God I don’t believe in. ~

“Fucking God,” he muttered, flopping down on his bed, turning to look at the empty double. “What kind of god lets these kinds of things happen, huh? What kind of god would allow it to come to this? Why would you let him do this? Why did it have to be him?”

Movement out the corner of his eye caught his attention and the sweetest sight greeted him. That face, that body, that stupid hair, all right within his reach, and yet so far away. Shaking his head to free his head of such a beautiful, torturous sight, he rolled onto his back to stare at the ceiling.

~What am I supposed to do when the best part of me was always you.

What am I supposed to say when I’m all choked up and you’re okay?

I’m falling to pieces. I’m falling to pieces. ~

“Fuck, I miss you,” he confessed to the ceiling. “I don’t know how to do this without you; I’ve never known how to do this without you.”

He turned to look at the phantom Sam, lying there, propped up on an elbow listening as intently as ever. He dragged a hand across his face. Everything he had ever wanted was within reaching distance but he knew the second he tried to reach for it, it would disappear. His hopes and dreams were insubstantial at best. Everything he had ever wanted was unreachable.

“I’m starting to see you everywhere, right out of the corner of my eye. In the crowded areas, in cars I pass by, the shitty motels that I stay in. God, I’m starting to see you everywhere,” he confessed to the empty room. “Its unbearable, living without you. And this goddamn music, this music is going to drive me insane. I swear, I’m the only one who hears it Sammy. Every time I curse or swear or do something completely fucked up because of it, people just stare at me like I’m crazy. I’m not crazy, am I?”

The faux Sam on the bed merely blinked at him. “Heh, why am I asking you? After all, you’re probably just a figment of my damned imagination.”

“I don’t know what to do here Sammy… what do you want me to do?”


Chapter 11

Afterimage

Fic title: Do You Want the Truth or Something Beautiful?

Author name: vampireifurita

Artist name: mulanreflection

Genre: Gen, Wincest

Pairing: Dean/Sam, some background Castiel/Sam, Castiel/Crowley

Rating: R

Word count: 26,732

Warnings: horror, disturbing imagery, violence

Summary: After Sam sacrificed himself to save the world; Dean had gone to Lisa just as he’d been asked. Things had been just fine until he started hearing music that no one else could hear and things just go downhill from there. With no one to turn to, bear witness to man lost at sea, in the throes of grief and unexplainable music that haunts him much like the memories of his brother.

-----------

Another empty motel room. He set his bag on the floor and gently placed the other on the bed. He unzipped the bag and carefully withdrew an old hoodie. He walked to the other bed and arranged it on the bed. He walked back to his own bed and took out a pair of pants, arranging them as well. Tilting his head he marveled at his handiwork. He sat on his own bed and flopped onto his side.

~Suddenly you were gone from all the lives you left your mark upon. ~

Cursing, he tried burying his head under the pillow to muffle the music. It was bad enough when he didn’t know the song, but when he knew it, it was that much worse. Freaking Rush. He would never be able to listen to this again. Not that he was going to be able to listen to much of anything at this rate. Every kind of music had been invading his head for who knows how long now. His random visits from Casper the friendly Angel, certainly weren’t helping either.

Looking at the other bed he could swear that something, or someone was filling out the clothes he’d put there. Surely Cas would know better than to mess with him this way. Nothing else would dare to invade his space like this. He watched as the ghostly figure filled out into something he never thought he’d see again.

“Sammy?” he asked tentatively. His hand reached out to touch, but all he felt were cold sheets and even colder clothes. Curses unbidden fell from his lips. Sitting up he reached for his bag, only to pull out the half-empty bottle of whiskey from within. He drank until he could drink no more.

~I remember

I feel the way you were

I feel the way you were ~

Arms wrapped around his middle, fingers stroking the skin of his arms. Warm breath pulsed against his ear, as a solid weight settled across his back. Groaning he turned under the oppressive touch. Warmth seeped into his skin, scorching him. He could feel the flames of heat licking at his skin. A burning hand pressed against his eyes, preventing him from opening them.

“Shhh…” a deep voice soothed him. He ached at the sound. All the longing that had built up over the weeks, all the pain that had consumed his life burned away at the touch.

“Sammy,” he breathed. Lips brushed along his cheek, searing his skin, causing it to bubble, crack and peel.

His eyes snapped open suddenly. The room was dark, the air was cold and he shivered at the lack of heat. He felt so cold. He felt so dead inside. He wanted to go back to sleep, but feared what would become of him in the morning. What would he become if he lived in his dreams?

Turning he gazed at the empty clothes on the empty bed beside him.

Chapter 12

Hope Leaves

Fic title: Do You Want the Truth or Something Beautiful?

Author name: vampireifurita

Artist name: mulanreflection

Genre: Gen, Wincest

Pairing: Dean/Sam, some background Castiel/Sam, Castiel/Crowley

Rating: R

Word count: 26,732

Warnings: horror, disturbing imagery, violence

Summary: After Sam sacrificed himself to save the world; Dean had gone to Lisa just as he’d been asked. Things had been just fine until he started hearing music that no one else could hear and things just go downhill from there. With no one to turn to, bear witness to man lost at sea, in the throes of grief and unexplainable music that haunts him much like the memories of his brother.

----------

Time doesn’t really matter anymore. It passes and that’s all that he knows. He doesn’t know how much has passed since last he saw him, or how long he’s been on the road, or even when he checked into this empty room. All that matters to him in this moment is the blessed silence.

Under normal circumstances he would be trying to fill the silence with music or television or even the company of someone, but he’s had so little silence that he treasures what he gets.

Sitting on worn, yellowed sheets in this rundown, no name place, he lets his mind wander. His thoughts slow and nearly stop altogether, leaving him peaceful and calm for the first time in so long that he can’t even remember the last time he felt like this. His eyes wander the water stained walls, the worn down carpet and the threadbare sheets. The tacky theme is of no consequence, he rarely notices these things anymore.

He is walking down an empty highway. Eight lanes empty of traffic. There are no cars on this interstate to nowhere. His feet drag across dented pavement, poorly fixed holes filled with burning asphalt. He steps around the cracks and the fissures, avoiding the minute obstacles in his path. There is nothing remarkable about the scenery. No buildings, no trees. All he can see are the signs to turn offs and ramps leading to nowhere.

On the horizon lies a crumbling city: skyscrapers that once stretched towards the sky in brilliant colors from the sun reflecting off their glass, now dull and decaying. As he gazes at this monolith of the world, sheets of glass and beams of steal break away from one of the towering buildings and tumble towards the earth. Without even having seen this vestige of human ego up close, he knows that the debris has crashed into the mountains of garbage and bloated bodies filling the streets.

The pain in his chest grows stronger the longer he walks. The exits off this highway seem more appealing, there is color to his right: bright greens, fluorescent purples, and neon oranges. The dull gray of the highway is unappealing and he wishes that he could take the turnoff to that brighter world, but he knows deep inside that the moment he gets on that off ramp that the world over there will darken.

Up ahead he sees a sign that causes his heart to stutter. He pulls his sticky shirt away from his body to let in some air to his overheated skin and gazes at the sign, crossing to the far right lane of traffic.  Enbisaland the sign reads. His feet carry him to the exit and he takes a step onto the pristine pavement of the turnoff. The road starts to crumble beneath his feet with every step he takes. His heart is thundering in his ribcage, eyes watering as he watches the scenery die. With every step this world starts to fade. The flowers start to wither and die, the water goes from a sapphire blue to a muddy brown, and the little town starts to smoke as fire starts to catch at the roofs. 

Eyes watering and lungs gasping for air he turns and runs back towards the highway. Once his feet hit the tarmac the world of Enbisaland starts to heal. He presses his hand to his aching heart to stem the aching hurt as he turns his back on Enbisaland and returns to the interstate.

The sun sets as the moon rises and it is dark before he takes his hand away from his chest, his fingers stained with moisture.

The city has no lights, and the interstate does not have lamps. Each exit is brightly lit though, as he passes them by. He never sees another soul on the road.

When he reaches the city he takes a winding exit under other exits, weaving through the chaos of this unprecedented crossroads. His turn takes him to the very bottom of the city, the seedy ground covered with the refuse of life.

He passes by crumbling apartment buildings and leaning factory buildings, his feet taking him wherever. He steps over bloated corpses, eyes bulging out of sockets and bellies burst open, putrid guts spilling on the ground. There are no living people here. The city is dead.

In the center of this behemoth mortuary is a small run down motel; out of place in its unassuming appearance, among the opulence of the skyscrapers. He approaches it with trepidation, knowing that nothing good resided therein.

Pushing open the door to a random room, he peered inside. It was just another run down room in another nameless place. Something caught his eye though, perched on the bedside table was a tarnished picture frame. His heart thundered in his chest and he clasped his hand over it, feeling it beat. Shakily he walked towards the frame, the picture within facing the wall. His hands trembled, his knees threatened to give out with every step, and his eyes started to take on tunnel vision. Reaching out with numb fingers he picked up the frame and turned it around.

Hazel eyes bored into his soul and nerveless fingers dropped the stained frame as his knees gave out.

~There is a wound that’s always bleeding,

 There is a road I’m always walking

 And I know you’ll never return to this place.~

His chest was on fire, and his shirt was starting to be soaked with perspiration. Looking down his eyes widened as they fell upon the gaping hole in his chest. His heart had been torn from his chest and he hadn’t even noticed.

As if it had been waiting for this moment of realization, the wound started gushing blood, soaking his jean clad thighs and spilling onto the worn carpet. Lightheaded and struggling to breathe, he forced himself to his feet and ran from the room, hand clutched over his chest to stem the flow of blood.

The city around him was burning. Acrid smoke filled his lungs and the stench of burning flesh stung his sinuses. Once I’m done, there’s only smoke, burning in my eyes to blind. To cover up what really happened, force the darkness unto me. Steel garters and panes of glass crashed down around him as he struggled through the cluttered streets. Fire licked at his skin, glass shards dug into his muscles and smoke burned his lungs.

He had to get out. He had to escape this land of sorrow and death, had to find his heart and stitch up the hole in his self. He needed to stem the tide of blood flowing from his veins. The road opened before him, the soaring crossroads of this reality, causing him to pause in his dash for freedom.

“You have a choice.” Whirling to face the only other living creature he had encountered in this barren wasteland, his eyes grew wide at the sight of the Crossroads King. “We could make a deal.”

He opened his mouth to retort, but with a wave of his hand, Crowley rendered him mute. “Or not, I’m only offering this once Winchester, and it’s a good deal, if I were you I’d take it.”

Eyes narrowing at the smarmy bastard and keeping a wary eye on the crumbling crossroads, he nodded for Crowley to continue. “You can go on as you are, half a person, wallowing in sadness and unbearable grief, or I could take it away from you. I could make the pain disappear.”

Frowning, he narrowed his eyes as chunks of concrete started to fall from the towering turnpike. “I could take the pain away, and you would get ten blissful years. All I want is your soul.”

Rolling his eyes, he gestured to his throat, indicating he had a question. The King of the Crossroads waved his hand in a gesture indicating he should just get on with it. “What exactly would you do?”

“I’d stitch up that hole in your soul, for one.”

“How?”

The King of the Crossroads paused, eyes narrowed in on the destitute figure in front of him. “By taking him away of course.”

If he had had a heart it would have stopped. “Take him away?”

“It will be like he had never existed, or if you prefer that he is out there somewhere living the life you know he had always wanted: wife, kids, lawyer job…”

“No.”

Brow furrowing, the King of the Crossroads tilted his head. “Are you sure? You won’t last long as you are. I’m offering you the Taj Mahal of all deals here, are you sure you want to pass this by? I won’t offer this to you again.”

“No.”

Face darkening with displeasure the King of the Crossroads turned away from him. “Suit yourself.”

The crossroads came down around him the moment that the demon disappeared, having only been held up by his presence.

He screamed, only to realize he was still sitting on the end of his threadbare bed in his innocuous room.

Chapter 13

My Alcoholic Friends

Fic title: Do You Want the Truth or Something Beautiful?

Author name: vampireifurita

Artist name: mulanreflection

Genre: Gen, Wincest

Pairing: Dean/Sam, some background Castiel/Sam, Castiel/Crowley

Rating: R

Word count: 26,732

Warnings: horror, disturbing imagery, violence

Summary: After Sam sacrificed himself to save the world; Dean had gone to Lisa just as he’d been asked. Things had been just fine until he started hearing music that no one else could hear and things just go downhill from there. With no one to turn to, bear witness to man lost at sea, in the throes of grief and unexplainable music that haunts him much like the memories of his brother.

--------

~I’m counting back the number of the steps it took for me to get back on the wagon of the weekend. ~

Gin was a good place to be. So was whiskey for that matter. Traditionally, missing these two drinks would make him sick to the point of puking, but lately it didn’t seem to matter much. Mixing his alcohol was like mixing pop and grenadine, a non-issue. In all actuality, nothing really mattered anymore.

Hiccupping, he made his way down the hallway and into the living room, taking the gin with him. Smiling to himself since the room was empty, he plopped down onto the couch, propping his feet on the coffee table. Bringing the bottle to his lips, he took a swig of the gin, the taste burning down his throat as some of the liquid dribbled down his chin.

He was lucky, she understood… mostly. She knew something was very wrong with him, something broken deep within himself, and she didn’t fault him for drowning himself in booze to get over it. If he was luckier (was that even a word? Did it really matter if it wasn’t? Was there even anyone listening to his inner monologue? Could he get some much needed input if there was? I mean, what’s the good of having an audience if not for feedback?) he would remember her name when she came back this afternoon. ~I’m trying hard not to be ashamed, not to know the name of who is waking up beside me, or the date, the season or the city. ~ Boy was that embarrassing, not knowing her name. He wasn’t as suave as he usually was, but give him a break, he had would probably still be smashed when she got back. Besides, there wasn’t much he wanted to remember right now, hence the drinking. Drinking dulled the senses, and the memories.

Oh god, the memories.

Laughter flooded his mind, loud boisterous laughter and smiles so wide they dimpled the rosy cheeks they belonged to. It wasn’t fair how he could be so blinded by such simple things. Sparkling eyes he could get lost in for days, those gentle touches that had been so casual between them…

A kick to his shin woke him from too vivid dreams of large hands holding onto him, and broad shoulders obstructing the view. Powerful arms wrapped around him tight, holding him safe. He bolted upright, spine ridged, eyes scanning the room, but not taking anything in.

~Love is never falling over ~

Frowning, he squinted at whoever woke him up. The boy just shook his head and walked away, clearly disappointed in his reaction. She looked at him from the doorway as she turned to follow the boy out of the room, but it didn’t affect him the way it used to.

~Should I choose a noble occupation?

If I did, I’d only show up late and sick

And they would stare at me with hatred. ~

Scowling at the radio, which had clearly turned on by itself, since there was no way this was happening in his head, he fumbled to stand. What a wholly apt song. He really should be cleaning up his act, not falling farther into the bottle. He hadn’t attended to the garden in days, and couldn’t find the will to go out there now. Every time he got close to being sober he would remember why he was here trying to pull off the con of the century and the next thing he would know he would be knee deep in booze.

Time healed all wounds, wasn’t that what they always said? That would mean he’d be able to kick the booze eventually, right? Some day the pain would recede to a dull throb in the very center of his being, something that he could ignore most of the time, but he would wallow in it once out of the eyes of the public. In the future, some far off distant time, he would be able to love her the way that he always should have. He would treat the kid like he was his own, and they would be a family. He wouldn’t have dreams about the boy with soulful eyes that had captured his heart long ago. He wouldn’t think about how that boy was burning in the fiery pits of hell for all of eternity.

Looking down at the half-empty bottle clutched in his hand, he brought it to his lips to stem the tide of haunting memories.


Chapter 14

Modern Day Prayer

Fic title: Do You Want the Truth or Something Beautiful?

Author name: vampireifurita

Artist name: mulanreflection

Genre: Gen, Wincest

Pairing: Dean/Sam, some background Castiel/Sam, Castiel/Crowley

Rating: R

Word count: 26,732

Warnings: horror, disturbing imagery, violence

Summary: After Sam sacrificed himself to save the world; Dean had gone to Lisa just as he’d been asked. Things had been just fine until he started hearing music that no one else could hear and things just go downhill from there. With no one to turn to, bear witness to man lost at sea, in the throes of grief and unexplainable music that haunts him much like the memories of his brother.

---------

He was sitting in a diner the first time he came. He had been pushing around his food like it was his job. Suddenly he had company, the angel sitting across from him. He could only lift his eyes to stare at him, not exactly surprised, but not expecting the sudden visit.

“Cas,” he said, the name rolling off his tongue like a prayer. The angel’s head tilted to the side, seemingly curious by his reaction. His brows knitted in a mockery of a frown, face still so unused to expression.

“Dean,” he replied in that monotonous voice of his. His food was quickly getting cold, so he looked away from those dead blue eyes to concentrate on trying to eat.

They didn’t say anything more, sitting in silence in some ramshackle diner on some highway in the boondocks of the country. He tried to eat, but found that any appetite he had had was gone the second the angel appeared. He hadn’t seen the wayward angel since it had happened. And while he was glad that he was still around, he couldn’t help but wonder what brought him here. Their last meeting hadn’t been pleasant.

The angel had told him, the last time they had talked, that he had asked for this life. He didn’t remember asking to go on alone in the world, emotionally damaged. The angel had also told him that there was nothing he could do to help Bobby.

God had seemingly brought back his angel, but it was out of both of their powers to bring back his father figure. God didn’t care, he had made that much clear, but Cas didn’t have the kind of power needed to resurrect someone. It had hurt more than he’d cared to acknowledge, the fact that he would be practically alone in the world, all the people that he had loved were dead. Sure he cared about Cas, the frumpy angel had grown on him in the two years they’d known each other, but it wasn’t the same. He couldn’t talk to Cas like he could to Bobby, and he would never share the connection that had been between him and Sammy with the angel of the lord.

Wincing at the pain that just that name brought to him, he put his money on the Formica table and got up to leave, angel trailing behind.

“Why the sudden visit Cas?” he asked, turning to face the angel once they were at his car. Cas took a deep breath.

“I am concerned about your well being,” was the reply he got. Rolling his eyes, he got in his car. With a flap of wings the angel was in the passenger seat beside him.

“Don’t sit there,” he said, turning on the car. Cas blinked at him before reappearing in the back. “Thanks.”

“Why are you not with Lisa and Ben? I thought that was what you wanted?” ever blunt the angel was. Pursing his lips he didn’t even think about his answer, long days by himself making his mouth loose.

“Yeah, it really wasn’t. I promised I’d go to them, and when she wanted me gone, I left,” he replied, turning onto the highway.

~God if you can hear, can you help me and my friends?

We’ve been driving all night headed into dead ends. ~

Sighing as the music started up, he knew that he hadn’t turned on the radio. Looking back at the angel occupying his back seat, he knew that he was the only one hearing it. From the corner of his eye he could see the ghostly figure in the passenger seat, every time it appeared it became more solid, more real and more frightening. He didn’t want to know what would happen when it became whole.

“Dean,” the angel repeated, snapping him out of his daze.

“What?” he asked, glad for the interruption, his thoughts scaring him.

“I do not think that it is wise for you to be driving in this condition,” the angel replied. His face drew back in a sneer.

“Since when do you care about what’s good for me? You abandoned me, you ass,” he snapped.

“I apologize, but I truly thought it was for the best,” the angel told him.

“Yeah… fuck you too Cas,” he retorted.

“Perhaps I shall come back when you are in a better mood,” the angel said and flapped away.

“Yeah, you do that.”

Chapter 15

Haunted

Fic title: Do You Want the Truth or Something Beautiful?

Author name: vampireifurita

Artist name: mulanreflection

Genre: Gen, Wincest

Pairing: Dean/Sam, some background Castiel/Sam, Castiel/Crowley

Rating: R

Word count: 26,732

Warnings: horror, disturbing imagery, violence

Summary: After Sam sacrificed himself to save the world; Dean had gone to Lisa just as he’d been asked. Things had been just fine until he started hearing music that no one else could hear and things just go downhill from there. With no one to turn to, bear witness to man lost at sea, in the throes of grief and unexplainable music that haunts him much like the memories of his brother.

--------

~Come here, pretty please, can you tell me where I am?

 You, won’t you say something, I need to get my bearings.

 I’m lost and my shadows keep on changing.

And I’m haunted. ~

The crowded boulevard bothered him, but he pushed through the people. His eyes were set on a distant figure, striving to catch up to that distant, hulking figure. People bumped into him, cut him off but he kept pushing forward, determined to reach his goal. Music was echoing in his head, but he was trying his best to ignore it.

It had started about five blocks back. He wasn’t quite sure what had made him come to the city, but he had. Looking at all the grand architecture had done nothing for him, so after a few turns round downtown, he was ready to leave. That was, of course, until he caught sight of familiar shoulders a head above the crowd. He had pulled into what was probably the only open parking space in all of downtown, shoved some money in the meter and chased after what was probably a figment of his imagination.

Turn after turn, block after block he ran, hoping against all hope to catch up to that which he could never seize. Turning down an alley, he realized he had lost whoever he had been chasing. Sliding down the grimy brick wall, he buried his head in his hands, a small sob escaping his lips.

~I’m haunted by the promises I’ve made

And others I have broken

I’m haunted

By the lives that wove the web

Inside my haunted head. ~

“Hey buddy, you okay?” someone asked. Lifting his head, he turned to look at the speaker. Nodding his head, he slowly got back on his feet.

“Yeah, thanks, just a little lost is all,” he replied.

“Best not get lost down that way, for that way lies madness,” the stranger said before walking away. Frowning, he left the alley and tried to get his bearings. He wasn’t sure where he had left his baby, and while that made his insides twist within him, the fact that he had chased after someone who didn’t exist in this plane of existence bothered him more.

Navigating the downtown area was easier when he didn’t have to keep his eyes on some distant figure. It was easy to maneuver through the crowded sidewalks when he could look at exactly where he was going. He found his baby at the corner of Monroe and State, floored by the perfect positioning. If ever there were a perfect parking place, surely he had found it.

He slipped in the car and turned to look at his passenger.

“Dude, don’t do that. I was freaking out, trying to chase you down the streets. Next time you need to get out let me know, I’ll pull over and we can both go on whatever wild goose chase you have in mind,” he told the grinning man in the passenger seat. “Don’t give me that cheesy smile Sammy, I’m not so easily swayed.”

The giant in the seat beside him reached out and stroked a hand down his cheek. His touch was scalding but it felt like he could breathe for the first time in two months at the touch. He leaned into the light touch and those fingers burned him.

~I’ll always love you

I’ll always need you

I’ll always want you

And I will always miss you. ~

Blinking back to himself, he sees people staring at him from the sidewalk. Setting his jaw, he started the car. Screw them. They didn’t know anything. He wasn’t crazy, his brother was right… he looked at the empty passenger seat, and it dawned on him that it had all been in his head. His brother wasn’t with him; his Sammy was being torn apart by the devil himself, locked in a cage of bone and flame.

Quickly pulling out of his parking spot, he navigated his baby out of the city limits. Only when he had reached farm land did he slow down. Gently pulling her off to the side of the road, he placed her in park. His hand ran lovingly over her sleek insides, pausing as he reached the passenger seat. Phantom fingers wrapped around his, and a sob wracked his body. He bit his tongue, trying to keep the grief inside.

~You think I’ll cry?

I won’t cry.

My heart will break before I cry.

I will go mad. ~

Laughing as burning hands caressed his skin, he let his head thud onto the back of the seat. Strong fingers gripped his jaw, turning his face to look at that which haunted his every waking moment. Hazel eyes bored into his soul and soundless words passed through wide lips. He merely watched as those eyes started to glow, their color starting to burn away. Flashing blue lights interrupted his fantasy, taking him back to the side of the road, on a highway leading out of the city. There was no passenger beside him, and only the sound of the radio blasting filled his ears.


Intermission

Intermission

Fic title: Do You Want the Truth or Something Beautiful?

Author name: vampireifurita

Artist name: mulanreflection

Genre: Gen, Wincest

Pairing: Dean/Sam, some background Castiel/Sam, Castiel/Crowley

Rating: R

Word count: 26,732

Warnings: horror, disturbing imagery, violence

Summary: After Sam sacrificed himself to save the world; Dean had gone to Lisa just as he’d been asked. Things had been just fine until he started hearing music that no one else could hear and things just go downhill from there. With no one to turn to, bear witness to man lost at sea, in the throes of grief and unexplainable music that haunts him much like the memories of his brother.

--------

Intermission

Dean was clearly slipping into a debilitating insanity. It was confusing to find him driving down the highways and byways of America, and not at home with Lisa and Ben. He didn’t understand what had prompted his charge to leave that environment.  The woman and her son had been good for Dean. Their influence had started to rehabilitate his broken soul, but as suddenly as he had seemed to improve, he had just as quickly plummeted into disrepair.

It wasn’t as if he didn’t want to interfere, didn’t want to set his human friend back on the right track, but Dean hadn’t wanted him to be part of his new life. He had been unwelcome in the world of normality. So naturally he went to find his own solace elsewhere.

The loss of his friends was devastating. He had not had friends before, and their loss stung his very core. Bobby Singer had been a good man, practically raising the Winchesters in the absence of their father. He had been kind and knowing, unconcerned by the brother’s relationship. He had never gotten the chance to ask if Bobby had known what was going on, but he suspected that the man had known more than he had let on. Bobby had been a good hunter and a good man, and while he was sure that he was in a better place now, it hurt him to know the man was gone. He would have been invaluable to Dean in his time of need, a confidant that would have helped him work through Sam’s death.

Sam, the boy with the demon blood, vessel of Lucifer, and savior to the world. He wasn’t sure what he felt about the other Winchester. To him, Sam had been many things. He had started as an obstacle, some abomination that had latched onto Dean. But when he had met the man, when he had seen his awe at the sight of angels, his faith in his father, he couldn’t help but think that Sam wasn’t the abomination he had been made out to be.

Sam had stretched his faith, had pushed his boundaries. While Dean had made him step out of his shell, made him think for the first time in millennia, Sam had shown him true faith. No matter what fate had thrown in his way he had never, not once doubted in his father. Sam’s faith had never wavered, even when his brother had given up on him, even when he had gone to be Lucifer’s vessel.

Sam had helped him through his own crisis of faith. He had been there when his father abandoned him, and when Dean had forsaken them both. Sam had gently held his hand, stroking his feverish, drunken head and whispered sweet nothings in his ear. He had loved Sam for that. There had been no reason to do it; there had been no thought behind it, just this tortured man holding a fallen angel together.

In his own way, he had loved Sam Winchester. Everything he could ever be was wrapped up in Sam, and everything he could never hope to achieve was what shone brightest in the man. That night, before they confronted Dean, he had let Sam in. He had given himself fully to the human, even knowing that he would never return his affections. When they brought back Dean the next evening, he knew that it would be over. Sam would forever hold his brother first in his heart, but he was glad to have even this small glimpse into the man that would save the world.

So it wasn’t as if he didn’t understand Dean’s pain, as he watched him struggle to build a life with Lisa and her son Ben, it was just that he would never feel it as deeply as the human. He had wandered the world for a while, aimlessly searching for something he didn’t know he needed.

In the highlands he found the demon Crowley. For all his bluster, the pretentious King of the Crossroads was holed up in an old, decaying castle. The demon had his faithful hellhounds with him, who surrounded him the moment he entered the castle. Crowley sauntered down the hall and had seemed surprised to see him.

“And here I had thought you were dead,” he had said, snapping his fingers. The hellhounds bounded away. He had cocked his head to the side, curious as to the source of the demon’s information.

“Where did you hear that?” he asked, stepping towards the smarmy demon.

“A little birdie told me,” the demon had quipped. “Where do you think I heard it?” He pulled out a shiny soul from his breast pocket. He had gasped; Bobby’s soul was with the demon, how could he have possibly forgotten?

“You were supposed to return that,” he had said. The demon shrugged and put the soul back in his pocket.

“Now where am I supposed to return it? His body’s dead,” the demon Crowley had said. “You might as well come in, if we’re going to have this chat.” The demon turned and started to walk out of the hall, leaving him powerless but to follow.

“Fancy a drink angel?” Crowley had offered. “Craig, aged forty years. It doesn’t get much better than this.” He had shaken his head, declining the offer. “Your loss.”

“Why are you keeping Bobby’s soul?” he demanded. Crowley had given him a frustrated look.

“Right to the point, aren’t you?” he asked. “What else was I to do with it? You never know when a soul will come in handy after all. I might need this someday.” He took a sip of his drink. “At least I didn’t send him to the pit, which has to count for something.”

“It counts for very little considering who you are,” he had replied.

“Well then feathers, let’s make a deal,” the demon had smirked, placing his glass on the molding table beside him. “I’ll give you Bobby Singer’s soul, what will you give me in return?”

“I won’t kill you,” he had said, steel in his voice. The demon laughed at him.

“Darling, you’ll have to do better than that,” he said. “Let me propose something to you, both of us have been cast out. I can’t go back down there right now, and you’ve been ousted from up there, am I correct?” He didn’t say anything. “I propose a sort of truce. You help me, I help you. A partnership if you will.”

He had frowned at the preposterousness of it all. “Why would I help you?”

“Because I can help alleviate the pain of lover boy’s death, and if we play our cards right, we can make it so that this world runs exactly as it had before, my kind doing what they do best, and yours becoming one big feathery family again, minus some real pricks,” the demon suggested.

“What exactly do you mean ‘alleviate the pain’ of Sam’s death?” he asked, completely ignoring the mirth in the demon’s gaze.

“Well, now I would think that would be painfully obvious,” the demon told him, hand sliding up the angel’s arm.

“And you will let go of Bobby’s soul?” he asked, trembling under the demon’s touch.

Crowley smirked at him. “Definitely. You’re much more useful than him at this juncture, plus I’ll get the side benefit of claiming you all to myself.”

He frowned. “You are suggesting…”

“Oh definitely feathers, it’s a deal breaker if you don’t accept this single stipulation.”

“Fine.”

A fine brow raised on the demon’s face. “Alright then. Let’s seal the deal.”

As he had found, Crowley was actually a good companion to have. His demonic nature may have been repulsive at times, but he was able to help soothe his aching wounds. He had thought that Lisa and Ben had done the same for Dean.

When Dean had gone off on his own again, he had been spurred into action. His first meeting with the human had gone nowhere. Dean had completely deflected his concern. He hadn’t felt rebuffed, but only concern, especially when he caught Dean staring at the seat beside him.

Their second meeting hadn’t gone any better. Dean had been confrontational from the start, lashing out at him the entire time. When his blaspheming went too far, he had lashed out. He regretted his actions on some level, ashamed that he had lowered himself to striking out at the man who had freed him, but he could not bear for anyone to speak thusly against his father. When Dean had confronted him about who he had been confiding in, fear chased him back into the waiting arms of the Crossroad King. Rejection was a powerful thing, and while he was very concerned about Dean’s mental state, his numerous look-ins having confirmed his belief that Dean was slowly going insane with grief, he knew he wouldn’t be able to deal with the rejection his choices might bring. For all his faults, Crowley was an ally, and even though his motivations were a mystery, he had made a deal and sealed it with a kiss.

His last visit to Dean had been disastrous. He had expressed his concern for Dean’s mental state and Dean had lashed out at him. He knew that Dean was seeing Sam, and he knew that Dean was starting to slip further and further away from reality. It seemed that Dean didn’t want to be free from the web of denial he was weaving and he wasn’t sure he wanted to cut him loose.

When he had confessed to partnering with Crowley, Dean had laughed. He had been so cruel, asking him to save a place in hell for him. He hadn’t wanted to, but he had asked Dean the only question that had mattered in that moment.

“Do you want the truth or something beautiful?”

Dean had blinked, pushed himself away from the angel and scrambled out of the room, giving Castiel his answer. He was back with Crowley within seconds, waiting for Dean’s time to end, and to make sure he didn’t end up doing anything too stupid.

~Do you want the truth or something beautiful?

Just close your eyes and make believe.

Do you want the truth or something beautiful?

I am happy to deceive you. ~



Chapter 16