the aftermath (it will be black)
SPN || PG-13 - language || gen (Sam, Dean) || 972 words
There's no such thing as the right words to say.
Sam didn't drink often, probably because of a childhood dictated by John and Jim Beam, but when he did consume enough liquor to make Dean reconsider the values of the Prohibition he generally fell into one of two settings: maudlin and bratty (rum, tequila) or weirdly intent and a little ruthless (whiskey, vodka).
Unfortunately for Dean, Sam had reached that pleasantly buzzed state of easy happiness and promptly barreled past it, greased with the power of Jack. He lay on the second bed in a loose-limbed sprawl, the tension bleached out to leave behind this man who had stopped looking like Dean's little brother for a long time now.
"Think you've had enough, Sam," said Dean from the little table. The way Sam held the neck of the bottle with his fingertips made it look more like a caress.
"You ever wonder why a demon can't escape someone's body if the mouth is covered? Or why deals are sealed with a kiss?"
"No," Dean lied. He had, but only in an idle sense before shoving the thought aside under the label of Interesting But Useless Shit You'll Never Know.
"Liar," Sam murmured, and Dean thunked his own bottle down on the table hard enough to make it slosh up the sides like a sickly-amber wave.
"Takes one," Dean replied just as softly.
"It's because it's how we shape the world."
Pause. "What, lies? Because in that case we may as well have written the freakin' Book of Genesis. Or did you mean the mouth, because hey, man, I've gotten some awesome blowjobs, but obviously I haven't been going to the same places as you."
Instead of making him hurt or defensive, the small dig made Sam's eyes go half-lidded in a creepy, vaguely reptilian way. Dean's stomach twisted.
"It's how we control things," Sam said to the ceiling in that half-talking-to-himself way that had always made Dean a little nervous, ever since they were kids. "In Genesis, Adam named everything in the Garden and gave it order. We exorcise demons using Latin words, but it's not the Latin itself that's powerful, just the way it tricks our mind."
"Thanks for the Theology one-oh-one, Professor. Now shut the fuck up and go to sleep."
"Don't you hear it in the way Cas says your name?"
"All right, that's it," said Dean, getting up from his slouch to reach for the bottle that Sam's long fingers were still molesting. But when Dean took hold of it, those fingers suddenly wrapped themselves around his wrist and pulled him off-balance, sending him toppling and landing with one knee pressed into the mattress between Sam's legs and his hands braced on either side of Sam's shoulders. His head spun with booze and vertigo. The Jack fell over and spilled its remaining third into the dingy carpet.
"Dude, what the fuck."
"Don't you hear it, Dean? It's like he's trying to rebuild you all over again. You're all he sees. He says 'Dean,' just like that – " gravelly, like his throat had been lined with sandpaper and the only way to get the words out was to mean them, " – and it's like he's saying a fucking Pater Noster."
Sam was doing weird things to his head, which wasn't anything new, honestly, the kid had been fucking with his head since he learned how to say no, and it wasn't even those goddamned fucking shitty powers trying to pull a whammy on him. Just Sam with his anger and grief and empathy and cruelty and impossible dreams.
"Sam," he said calmly, very much Not Thinking that this was the first time he had really touched his brother in ages, very much Not Thinking about how it made his skin crawl. "You're fucking wasted."
Sam tilted his head to the side slightly, slanted eyes hooded and dark. "You keep pushing me away."
"Well, gee, seeing you smeared in demon blood really rouses that fraternal love," Dean snapped, but Sam just slid a hand up the back of Dean's neck – whoa, wait, what – and gripped his short hair with a scary, quiet conviction, "I thought it was the only way I could protect you this time around."
Dean wasn't stupid, he'd seen the helplessness turning Sam's edges ragged in the last months before Dean's deal was up, but Jesus fucking Christ, this was how Sam was justifying all the…all the lying and fucking around and yeah, he said he was sorry, he said he was trying to make up for it, he'd been clean for a while (Famine didn't count, Dean had to believe that) but. Christ.
"Castiel brought you back. He says your name and it remakes you and it – it wasn't me. It wasn't me. Azazel bled in my mouth, that means something, it does, and – "
"Sam," said Dean, "if you don't shut up I'm gonna punch you. It's done, I'm back, and we've got bigger things to worry about."
"I can hear the angels when they talk, and it hurts."
Dean stared at him. As if the powers weren't enough, or the damn vessel thing, he was starting to wonder if he'd ever really known his little brother. The thought was – well, he didn't really know what it was, except that maybe his life had been one long joke of wasted sacrifice and the amulet was actually a leash around his neck.
"They think you'll say 'yes' to Michael."
Dean was silent.
"I don't think you will."
"Yeah? Why not? You having visions again?""'Cause there's no such thing as the right words to say."