Characters: Dean (POV), Sam, a very well-read redneck harpy
Word Count: ~1400
Warnings: disturbing imagery,
Notes: Freewrite 3/10/2015. Playing with an S2 kind of vernacular, maybe. Which I guess means this is supposed to be funny but also sad and also scary? Spoilers for the last scene from 10x14 "The Executioner's Song," which is the only scene I've seen because clearly I have no self-control. Takes place mid-S2 and sometime post-10x14.
Sam's never quite mastered patter. That rolling ocean of meaninglessness that comes out of your mouth when, for instance, your brother's spine's been punched through and he's leaving you whether you make meaning or not.
Or when you're still a good few months from that, and you're caught and you're pretty sure the monster with its tongue in your brother's mouth is going to fuck both of you up good. You patter because you dunno, in those instances it's just always seemed better than being forgotten, or left behind. Monsters don't usually get talkative prey, and even though you're pretty sure you never actually get under their skin--and there those talons go, right under yours; so near the surface they look like new blueish veins threatening to exceed your hairy casing--it changes the dynamic. When you're tied up in a cave in Somewhere, Arkansas that's almost universally a good thing, since clearly the usual dynamic hadn't worked out so good for the captives.
Plus, the smart monsters (the ones that tend to land you in this position--fair and square, if you're going to be honest) tend to be skittish when it comes to hunters and silence. It makes them think you actually have a plan, and are only biding your time. And probably the worst thing that can happen to you right now is to be overestimated.
Then Sam calls you home, away from summer 2006 or whenever that had been. He does it without speaking--either that, or you just didn't hear him. They're starting to sound like the same thing. You're not sure if you should be worried, like if you're actually losing the shape of words, and you're becoming some kind of massively homicidal baby, or if the things Sam says just don't matter. Because Sam, since the beginning of time itself, has only ever been a happy babbler. Right now, he's not that happy, and he's trying to find the exact right plus-or-minus seven words to say. If he can find the exact right words, maybe they'll work like a spell, and he will save you.
You suppose you have only your father to blame for that, since in his line of work that did usually do the trick.
(You wonder if Sam remembers Sasha Colm, bouncing bundle of murderous joy that she'd been. He probably does. Dad certainly would, if he were here to remember. You're never sure whether distancing yourself from him now is all the growing up Sam had wished you'd done fifteen years ago, or finally just lying in your grave. The one thing you know is, at the end of all this, you're not gonna be you.)
Sam tells you that you are brave. That you have performed feats of amazingness. That he values you. It's all grossly saccharine, like Sam's felting each fuzzy, rounded letter. Safety edges. It's all dislocatively large and general. But you two just don't say that shit. It makes it sound like some kind of accomplishment, and not like something you're really just supposed to be. And you know, all that may have even applied that one day, in that one cave, but not right now. The only thing you've done today is wake up. You're working your way through a glass of water. You didn't bother with coffee because for some reason the smell has started to make you gag, and you didn't jump to whiskey because you're that tired of disappointing yourself, at least. Sam's in the process of making you coffee because you love coffee.
You're probably going to drink it, because you love Sam. If you and him were anyone else, that would be what love meant. All his gestures, and yours. (Mostly his; again, the one thing you have even done today is wake up.) But if Sam's talking about a different day--one with Cain, for instance--then while it was definitely fucking amazing, you'd been neither brave nor valuable.
You should tell him you're fine--in the most temporally-bound sense of the word since, well, clearly reports vary. But it's only 8am, and you'd only been thinking about normal things, like harpy rednecks. The pain in your arm had come, this time, from the memory of talons.
Sam pours you a cup of coffee and maybe it's better that he doesn't say anything. Maybe it doesn't matter. If he does find his magic incantation, you'll probably find a way to twist it anyway. As you gulp down your coffee, it certainly feels like twisting--your throat burns and swells, you feel a rush of lightheaded heat in your brain, and it's a feet dangling, rope-cording sort of twisting.
You can make a weapon out of anything.
One night there's a stupid-smart redneck harpy getting one over on you, showing you the color of its talons under the color of your skin, and then you're ripping yourself out. Your blood sprays in its eyes and the only thing you could've done to make this more Hollywood macho was bite the damn thing, but you don't because you'd been only twenty-seven at the time, and definitely on the market, and kind of a priss about your teeth. The whole deal about using blood to blind it had been altogether too southern gothic for Professor Redneck Harpy, and it had screamed something, and out of all that somehow Sam had divined that what it meant was that there were two, two harpies, and in the commotion had been ready to kill the brother when it came rushing in. Apparently it paid to be a hunter who'd read Faulkner.
(Though that whole summer, whenever you referenced that story--you know, Sam, the book about the redneck harpies who are brothers and stuff--the one you'd written backward and into your perception of the world, Sam just glared at you. Probably there was no such story. Probably his feats of interpretation had not been quite that literal. Probably it had taken some work to get from A to B that you were definitely glossing over. Probably Sam didn't like the idea of you needing skin grafts the whole damn summer. And maybe it had been the painkillers, or just the lull, but probably Sam wasn't a fan of the fact that from June to October, suddenly you're ready to die again. You'd both been doing so well, what with your run in with the law and the skeevy cop and your ridiculous craving for pea soup, and then the redneck harpies. Then suddenly you're thinking about crossroads and Robert Johnson and then, in Oregon, croatoan. Assisted suicide is legal in Oregon.)
You almost want to tell him what you're thinking, about the harpies and how goddamn classic that had been, and how most of all (more even than the talons) you remember the feel of Sam at your back, the intensity of his shoulders digging into yours, the itchy sweat of his shirt where yours had ridden up, the strength of his back against yours. You want him to know that you're thinking of the strength of his back against yours.
You hadn't let Cain kill you. And you hadn't let yourself--well, maybe that broke down because if you had then it wouldn't have been you, would it. That's what Sam wants to be proud of. And he wants you, really and truly this time, to be proud of us. He's searching, desperately and craftily, for those magic words--like he's the one who's the scribe of Heaven. You think maybe it'd be a good idea to help calibrate Sam's estimation of you.
Deep down you know that if at any point, at any somewhere down the line--let's go with sooner, not later--you start talking about redneck harpies and brotherhood and any of that, Sam had better start watching his own back. You can turn anything into a weapon, and you know words can cause serious bodily injury. It wouldn't be your first time.
But today, you keep your mouth shut. You put your mug in the sink with no mention at all of your exceptionally harmless thoughts. 2006 had been so long ago. It's like a fairy tale, you wrote so long ago together. There's nothing to it.
Today you keep your mouth shut, and you hope Sam knows it means you're planning something. You hope he's ready.