Guard dogs and cuddling companions

Ozzy

CHAPTER TWO

I couldn't decide which season to set this, so I've decided to go AU from the S5 finale. So Lucifer is back in his cage, no apocalypse, and nobody died & went to hell (apart from Adam).

More sick!Dean with worried/protective!Ozzy and Sam.

After Ozzy finished drinking the water, Sam cleaned the bowl out and opened the cupboards to see if they had anything for the dog to eat. He sighed when he saw they were almost empty, the only things they had were the soup he had bought for Dean.

Dean lifted his head from the pillows weakly, and looked over at him. "G-Give him... my pie."

Sam looked over at him in surprise. "You want me to give your pie away? Are you sure?"

"Yeah," whispered Dean, laying back against the pillows. "He needs t-to eat something."

"Okay," said Sam, turning to the dog, who was staring up at him. "He must really like you if he's sharing his pie with you, he never shares it with me." He smiled at Ozzy, and opened the fridge to grab Dean's slice of apple pie.

Without waiting to be told, Ozzy sat down and waited until Sam placed the bowl in-front of him.

Sam picked up a fork and cut the pie up into smaller pieces so it would be easier for Ozzy to eat. When he placed the bowl on the floor, Ozzy cautiously stepped forward, and sniffed the pie, before eating it hungrily.

Sam stood and watched the dog eat. He noticed how the dog kept looking up at him, as if he was expecting to be hit just for eating something. "Hey, do you like that?" he asked, ruffling his fur, before going to check on his sick brother. "How are you feeling?"

"Hmm," Dean answered, looking up at Sam with a miserable expression.

"I know you feel like crap right now, but you'll be better soon."

"H-Hope... so," Dean said weakly, turning onto his side, and rubbing his chest.

"What are we going to do with him?"

Dean looked over at the dog, and was silent for several minutes, thinking. Finally, he came to a decision and said, "K-Keep him."

Sam's eyebrows shot up in surprise. "Keep him? We can't take a dog hunting."

"Well, I'm not l-leaving him... with the sonofabitch that h-hurts him," Dean whispered weakly, glazed green eyes glistening. "We don't have to... take him h-hunting. We'll k-keep him with us until we h-have a hunt... then we'll take h-him to Bobby's for a couple of days."

Sam looked over and watched the dog eating the pie. Knowing Dean had always wanted a dog, and how attached the two were to each other, he didn't have the heart to separate them. "Okay. Since the world is no longer in danger of ending, we'll cut down on the hunting, so you can both spend more time together."

A weak smile crossed Dean's pale face as he closed his eyes.

"Why don't you get some rest? Me and Ozzy will be right here to take care of you."

Hearing his name, the German shepherd jumped onto the other side of the bed, and laid down by Dean's side. Licking the freckled nose once, he barked, then laid his head on his new friend's shoulder.

"See? He's looking after you already."

Dean stroked his fingers through the fluffy fur on Ozzy's ear, which flopped down, showing how young the dog really was. He winced when he felt a cough build up in his already sore chest. "Sonofa-" He wheezed, just seconds before he started having yet another coughing fit.

He coughed into the crook of one arm as his whole body shook through the coughs. He could hear Sam talking to him in a soothing voice, and Ozzy whining, but he tried to tune them both out and concentrate on not choking to death. When the fit finally subsided, he collapsed back with a pained moan, throwing an arm over his face.

While Ozzy tried to help Dean by nudging his cheek with his wet nose, Sam got the cough syrup and poured some onto the spoon. "Here. Take this," he said, moving forward, and placing one arm under Dean's shoulders to sit him up against him to take the medicine.

"Ugh," moaned Dean, grimacing at the taste. "T-Tastes like ass."

Sam gently laid Dean back down in the bed, and adjusted the covers to keep him warm. "There we go," he whispered, brushing Dean's sweaty hair back from his hot forehead.

Dean winced in pain and misery, rubbing his eyes with his fists like a sleepy toddler. He sniffled, and held the warm body of the German shepherd close to his chest.

"Get some sleep."

Dean mumbled sleepily, and tried to relax his aching body. Ozzy started squirming and wriggling to get comfortable, and accidentally hit Dean in the nose with his paw. He tried to glare at the dog, looking like a grumpy child. "W-Watch... it."

Ozzy whined, his brown eyes going big and round as he licked Dean's nose and chin.

"It's al-alright Ozz," said Dean, patting him, before snuggling closer to the dog, tangling his fingers in the thick black and golden fur. He closed his eyes with a sigh, and was asleep within seconds.

Ozzy nudged his clammy cheek once with his wet nose, and curled up by his side, tucking his head under Dean's chin.

Sam watched Dean sleep for several minutes to make sure he was okay. He smiled when Dean seemed to be sleeping peacefully, his sleep occasionally interrupted by the rattle in his chest.

"Hey, can you look after Dean for me for awhile? I need to go to the store and get some dog food and stuff," Sam asked, feeling like a freak, having a conversation with a dog.

Ozzy seemed to understand, and barked once, his tail wagging in excitement at hearing the word 'food.'

"Thanks. I won't be too long." Sam walked over and ruffled the soft fur, before placing his hand on Dean's face. Feeling the heat still there, he walked over and wet one of the tea towels, before carefully putting it over Dean's forehead.

Ozzy tilted his head to one side, and nudged at the tea towel, making Sam laugh.

"It won't hurt him. It's to cool him down, he's too hot. Take good care of him for me, you hear me?" he said, walking out and leaving the two on their own.

When Sam came back, the first thing he did was check on Dean. He had to smile when he saw him on his back, spread out in the middle of the bed like a starfish, head lolling to the side, with a small trickle of drool seeping from a slightly open mouth, and Ozzy laying fast asleep beside him, also laying on his back with his legs in the air. They made quite an adorable sight.

Sam took another picture of them, and carried the bags to the small kitchen to unpack them. The only sound in the motel room was the wheezing and rattling as Dean breathed through his open mouth, his nose too congested to be able to breathe through it.

He unpacked quietly, so he didn't wake them. When he finished, he walked over to sit on the edge of Dean's bed to make sure he was okay. Checking the towel, he noticed it had dried out, so he took it to the kitchen to re-wet it.

When the wet tea towel was gently placed back on his forehead, Dean flinched and moaned sleepily. "Shh. It's only me. It's okay. Get some more rest."

Dean mumbled some more, then settled back down.

Sam wiped the tea towel down Dean's flushed cheek. "I'll... We'll take care of you," he said, looking down at the sleeping dog.

An hour later, Dean sniffled and slowly woke up to see Sam smiling down at him.

"Hey sleepy head, how are you feeling?"

Rubbing his eyes, Dean looked down at the dog beside him, who was still fast asleep on his back, his mouth slightly open so it looked like he was grinning. He raised an eyebrow and looked at Sam. "This d-dog has... some weird-ass sleeping positions."

"Just like you. Apparently, dogs will only sleep on their backs when they feel comfortable and safe... and they trust you. I checked online while you were asleep."

Dean smiled softly as he lowered his hand and stroked the exposed stomach. "You'll a-always be safe with m-me, Ozz," he whispered, sounding as if he had swallowed some razor blades.

Sam winced, and picked up the glass of water. "Here. Have a drink," he said, sliding one hand behind Dean's back and helping him up. He gave Dean the glass, and propped the pillows up behind him.

"Th-Thanks," Dean whispered, taking a few sips of the cold soothing water.

"Hungry? I can make you some soup, if you want," Sam offered, taking the half empty glass back. "You haven't eaten since yesterday morning."

Dean was about to say he wasn't hungry when his stomach rumbled loudly, making Ozzy growl in his sleep. "I-It's alright, Ozzy," he soothed, rubbing the dog's stomach again. When he settled, he turned to Sam and nodded. "Okay."

Ozzy twitched in his sleep, and his feet started moving, as if he was running or riding a bike.

"Awwww. S-Sammy, Sammy... look at him. Look. Awww."

Sam put the tin of soup on the counter, and turned to look at Ozzy. He had to laugh when he saw him, it was one of the cutest things he had ever seen in his life. "I guess he's dreaming."

Dean smiled over at Sam, and turned back to watch the dog sleep. He winced, and rubbed his chest when he felt a sharp pain in his chest. "O-Oh crap," he croaked, before launching into another coughing fit.

The sound was enough to wake Ozzy up. He went from fast asleep to wide awake and on his feet within seconds.

As he coughed, Dean could feel a hand rub over his back in soothing circles, and hear a voice in his ear, trying to soothe him.

"I've got you, Dean. I've got you, just try to breathe in slowly. That's it, now let it out."

Dean concentrated on what the voice was telling him, taking shallow breaths and letting them out slowly. Finally, the coughing stopped, leaving him gasping for breath and curled up on his side, one hand held to his chest, the other clenched in Ozzy's fur.

The German shepherd was whining, and nudging Sam away, so he could see to his sick friend. When Sam moved, Ozzy used his cold wet tongue to lick at Dean's hot clammy face, making him sigh and lean into the dog.

"How are you feeling?" asked a worried Sam, fingers stroking through the sweaty hair.

Dean groaned in pain, and with Sam's help sat back up so he was resting against the pillow mountain. "Like c-crap."

Sam smiled sympathetically, and pulled the covers over him to keep him warm. "I know, but me and Ozzy will take care of you," he said, standing from the bed. "I'll go make that soup."

"Thanks S-Sammy," Dean whispered weakly, reaching out to stroke the dog, trying not to notice how he sometimes flinched when a hand came towards him. "Hey, you don't... ever have to go back to the b-bastard who... hurts you. I'll keep you safe and I'll n-never hurt you. Would you like that? Do you want to stay with... m-me?"

Ozzy barked excitedly, and started licking Dean all over again, making him laugh.

As Sam stirred the soup, he stood watching them both. He hadn't heard Dean laugh like that in a long time, he had almost forgotten what it sounded like.

"Alrighty then. Up high," he said, holding his hand up. He grinned in delight when Ozzy raised his paw and high-fived him. "Good boy."

A couple of minutes later, Sam put the bowl on a tray and carried it over to the bed, laying it gently on Dean's legs. "There we go. Do you need anything else?"

"No," he said as he picked up the spoon. "Did y-you get some food... for Ozz?"

"Yeah. It's... Damn, I left the dog bowls in the car," said Sam, walking over to open the door. He blinked in surprise when he saw it was now raining heavily, so he put on his black hoodie, pulling the hood up. "I'll be back in a sec."

Ozzy was busy with Dean, so he didn't see Sam going out of the room. But as soon as he saw a hooded figure come back into the room, he jumped over Dean, and stood between him and the figure protectively, growling and snarling savagely, his teeth bared.

Dean dropped the spoon and stared at the dog. "Ozzy Jonathan Harley. Down," he commanded, trying to make his voice sound strong, even though it hurt.

Ozzy barked once, and obeyed the command, laying down by Dean's side, not taking his eyes from the man who could be a threat to his friend.

"It's S-Sam, you freak... Look," he said, pointing over at Sam, who had taken his hood down and was staring at the German shepherd in shock.

The dog tilted his head to one side in question, but relaxed slightly when he saw who it was. He licked Dean's arm, looking up at him mournfully.

"Shh. I-It's alright Ozz," he whispered, ruffling the soft fur, before picking his spoon back up in a slightly trembling hand.

"Ozzy John Harley?" asked Sam, carrying the bag of dog food to the kitchen.

"Yeah. He needed... a real n-name."

Sam placed the new dog bowl on the floor, and filled it up with biscuits and meat. "John after dad?"

"H-He's named after three... Dad, Ozzy Osbourne's f-first name... and John Bonham. Harley is after Harley Davidson."

"It suits him. Hey Ozzy, food."

Ozzy barked once, and jumped down from the bed to walk over to the kitchen, just as cautiously as before.

Sam smiled down at him, and stroked him. "Nobody's going to hurt you. You're safe here." His heart melted when Ozzy nudged his leg and licked his jeans, before he started eating the dog food. He filled a second dog bowl up with water, and placed it on the floor beside Ozzy. "There you go."

After making sure the dog was okay, Sam walked over to sit on the edge of Dean's bed as he slowly sipped at his soup. "Can't believe anyone would want to hurt him," he said quietly, watching Ozzy, who kept looking over at Dean even as he ate his food.

"I know," whispered Dean, taking another sip of the soup. "E-Even after everything I did in hell, I'd never hurt a dog. I swear... if I ever meet the guy..."

Sam looked back at Dean, and saw the angry expression. "Well, he's not going to hurt him anymore."

After eventually finishing his soup, Dean settled back against the pillows and watched the western that was currently playing on the TV. He shifted slightly when he realised he was desperate for a wee. He groaned, and slowly sat up, blinking against the dizziness as he moved.

Sam came back in from letting Ozzy out, and rushed over when he saw Dean standing shakily by the bed. "What are you doing? You shouldn't be up and about."

"I-I need to take a leak... and unless I climb on O-Ozzy's back, and hitch a ride... I h-haven't got a choice. I can't aim from in here, I'm not that good."

"Let me help you," said Sam, taking his arm.

"G-Get off." He shrugged Sam's hand off, and leaned against the wall to support himself. "I can go myself."

"But... But what if you get dizzy, or trip over?" said Sam, slightly panicked. "What if you slip and hit your head on the sink? You could get concussion... or die."

Dean raised one eyebrow and stared. "Wow. D-Dramatic much?"

"Can you blame me? When you fell into that grave..." Sam broke off as his eyes teared up. "I thought you were dead."

Dean wanted to say Sam was being ridiculous, but it wasn't every day your brother collapsed face-first into a grave. He opened his mouth to make a joke about the best place to drop dead would be an open grave, but Sam was freaked out enough. "S-Sam, I'm..." he started, but Sam wasn't done.

"You were so pale... even more than the ghost. I didn't think you were breathing until I got closer and I heard you wheezing. You scared the life out of me," he finished in a broken voice, a tear breaking free, and falling down his cheek.

Dean's expression softened. "How about... I take Ozzy with m-me? He'll let you know if anything h-happens."

Sam bit his lip and thought about it, before nodding. "Okay. But sit down, so you don't pass out."

"Fine." He sighed, looking down at the dog, who was standing right by his side, as if he belonged there, staring up at him with his big brown eyes. "Come on O-Ozz," he whispered, slowly turning towards the bathroom with Ozzy beside him.

As Dean shuffled to the bathroom, holding onto the wall for support, Ozzy nudged his leg, and licked his fingers every few steps, making him smile and scratch at his ears.

Usually, it was owners who chose their dogs, but this dog chose his new owner. And even though the dog was just as damaged as he was, Dean was going to do his best to be the owner that Ozzy deserved.

TBC

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