Chapter 7

Sam was pushed firmly yet somehow gently through the cabin door and over to the armchair furthest away from the window. He watched as Dean knelt infront of him, watched as John carried a knocked out Jess over his shoulder. That was his fault. Jess wouldn't be unconscious if it weren't for him; wouldn't have a possibly cracked rib, wouldn't have purple bruises forming on her stomach, wouldn't be dangling over his Dad's shoulder with a lump on the back of her head, wouldn't be here - in this shithole of a cabin, terrified for her life.

And it was all his fault. His fault because he had fallen in love with her, his fault because he had allowed them to move in together, his fault because he had taken her out on dates...his fault because he didn't turn around and ignore her when she had said hello.

A Year and a Half Ago!

She was beautiful. Simply gorgeous. Golden blonde hair, big blue eyes, white clean teeth, a smile that made you smile, a laugh that warmed your heart.

Sitting at a round table in the far corner of the library, Sam couldn't stop staring. She sat a few tables down from him, laughing and joking with a group of friends. Throwing her head back as she laughed, bending it down as she giggled, tossing her hair off her shoulder, looking over at him with a shy smile, leaning on the table with her arms folded...

Wait. Looking over at him...Shit!

Sam quickly bent his head down, pretending to read his textbook as he hunched his shoulders up to his neck and shifted uncomfortable in the wooden chair.

She was way out of his league; she deserved someone better - someone who could shower her with affection and bright shiny diamonds, someone who could take her to Paris and kiss her at the top of Eiffel Tower - maybe get down on one knee at midnight. The stars and the view would dazzle her but the huge, expensive diamond in the little black box would bring happy tears to her eyes. Or Hawaii, where she can dance on the beach at sunset in a hula skirt and a headband made from flowers, her hair reflecting the flames from the torches that were dotted around in the sand.

Sam inwardly scoffed. His imagintion always ran away from him. Without lifting his head, Sam glanced up and quickly put his eyes down again when he made eye contact with her. Why was she still staring? He was just a nobody from nowhere with issues that not even a Shrink could fix. Sam scoffed in disgust with himself. Forget Paris or Hawaii; he couldn't even offer her a safe future - couldn't hold her hand as they walked down the street, couldn't kiss her under a bloody streetlight, nevermind Eiffel bleedin' Tower. Would be too ashamed to meet her parents in his ripped up jeans and too-big hoodies...

Hell, he couldn't even talk to her.

It wasn't safe.

He may have disappeared just under two years ago but he was still looking over his shoulder.

What kind of life could he give her?

Sam shook his head, disappointed that he had allowed himself to fantasise like that - he only allowed himself to do that in the dead of the night, under his covers where all his make-believe dreams would disappear come morning. Sometimes he hated waking up - hated that he couldn't stay in bed just a little longer, live inside his own mind where nothing could go wrong and everything was perfect.

And, once again, Sam shook his head as he closed his textbook and starting putting his papers back into his bag. They were called dreams for a reason; because they never came true, and Sam had to learn to live the life he had. The beautiful girl five tables down would just have to stay in his dreams, and Sam would just have to deal with it.

Standing from the chair, Sam threw his bag over his shoulder, picked up the four textbooks he was planning on borrowing from the Library and started walking towards the counter.

"Excuse me."

Sam whipped his head around, startled. His eyes widened when he saw who it was and for a moment he just stood there staring at her. Apparently she didn't get the memo that she was supposed to stay in his dreams. He flinched when his books hit the floor, not even realising he had loosened his hold on them. His cheeks burned hot as he quickly crouched down to pick them up; they burned even hotter when her hand touched his as she handed him the last book.

"Sorry. Didn't mean to startle you." Her voice was sweet and soft as they both stood.

Sam offered her a small awkward smile and kept his eyes down. He wasn't supposed to talk to anyone - that had been drilled into him at a young age; even now, after nearly two years, he can still hear Dean's and John's voices in his head - "You don't talk to anyone, Son." - "Let me and Dad do the talking, Sammy." - The consequences for talking to a stranger...Sam inwardly cringed...couldn't think about it.

Sam could admit that he was socially awkward, due to no fault of his own. He grew up with a crazy, abnormal family that had liked to control every aspect of his life - couldn't blame him for being shy around people who didn't share his blood.

Sam jerked slightly when the girl started talking.

"So, listen, I know this is a bit forward, and I don't normally do this - well, I say normally but what I mean is that I never do this, like ever, ask my friends. But I saw you looking earlier and I thought you were totally hot..." Her eyes went wide and she blushed. "I didn't mean...well, not hot...I mean, you are hot, but...I..." She stuttered.

Sam bent his head to hide the smile on his face. He heard the girl take a deep breath and let it out slowly.

"I'm sorry." She chuckled nervously. "Like I said, I've never done this and I tend to ramble when I'm nervous, it's like my mouth has a mind of its own, words just start gushing out, and I end up saying something that I'm thinking but don't really want to say and..." She clamped her mouth shut and gave a tight smile when she noticed that Sam was staring at her, a little smile on his own face. She took a deep breath again. "And I'm rambling." She chuckled. "I'm...I'm sorry. Can - can we please start over?"

He shouldn't be doing this. He should politely tell her that although he's flattered, he has a load of work to concentrate on and he just wasn't in a place for any sort of relationship and maybe in another place, another time...That's what he should do. But he isn't doing that. Instead he gives her a rare dimpled smile and nods his head. And he shouldn't be doing that. It's not safe. She shouldn't be talking to him. If Dad or Dean ever found out...

Her smile is big and bright and his stomach does this weird turning feeling but he isn't sick or anxious...

"Hi. I'm Jess." She sticks her hand out.

...And he isn't sick or anxious, he's happy, and that weird turning feels a lot like butterflies and Dad and Dean aren't here.

He takes her hand in his and speaks his first words to her. "I'm Sam."

Present Day!

He should have walked away. He should have told her that he wasn't interested, turned around, walked out the door without a backwards glance and she would have been safe; would probably be with some guy that had played football in high school, happily announced their engagement to her parents.

And it hurt like hell to think about it, but that was what should have happened. But in one single selfish moment, Sam had doomed her to this. And he couldn't turn back time, couldn't undo it...and Jess had to pay for it.

Sam's pity party was interrupted when Dean spoke.

"Dad, take her to the basement. And could you bring me some towels please?"

Basement? Sam didn't realise the cabin had a basement, didn't see a door that led to one. But as he watched his Dad walk into the kitchen he remembered briefly seeing a wooden door that was painted white hidden away in the far corner of the kitchen. His attention snapped back to Dean as his brother gently turned his head away from the kitchen door and tipped his chin up, looking at the three cuts on his neck.

Dean's thumb softly rubbed the skin of his neck under the cuts and Sam tried his best not to cringe away at the hard glare in Dean's eyes. He couldn't stop from jumping in nervous fright when Dean suddenly slammed his hand down on the arm of the chair.

He watched Dean with a cautious eye as his brother bent his head down and breathed deeply.

"You're bleeding." Dean mumbled through clenched teeth. He abruptly lifted his head and glared. "Why are you bleeding, Sam?" He asked in fake curiosity.

Sam frowned in confusion. "Dean..."


He flinched at the loudness of Dean's voice and decided it would be better to just answer the question. "Because I cut myself."

"You cut yourself." Dean immediately repeated. "Why did you cut yourself, Sam?"

Sam's frown became deeper and he started feeling wary. Dean knew the answers, so why was he asking the questions? The hard anger in Dean's voice was enough for Sam to want to cur up in a ball, show his puppy eyes, and apologize over and over until Dean forgave him.

Dean's glare hardened when Sam didn't answer. "Why?" He asked firmly through clenched teeth.

Sam swallowed hard, wanting to drop his eyes to the floor but was too afraid to. "So you would stop hurting Jess." He whispered.

"Jess!" Dean's voice raised as he slammed his hand down on the arm of the chair again. Dean angrily pushed himself to stand and walked a few steps back, suddenly turning back around to face his brother. "You cut yourself." He paused, pointing a finger at Sam before pointing at the kitchen door. "Because of Jess!" He gestured towards Sam's neck. "You - are - bleeding..." He pronounced each word firmly. "Because of her!" He once again paused and stared at Sam for a moment. "Give me one good reason why I shouldn't go down to that basement right now and slit her goddamn throat. And it had better be one hell of a reason, Sam!"

Sam opened his mouth to argue, plead, make Dean see reason; he didn't know which one and didn't get the chance to figure it out as John chose that moment to walk in, towels in hand, as well as two medium-sized plasters, and anger written all over his face. Without taking his eyes off Sam, John threw the towels and plasters to Dean, who stepped forward and easily caught them. Dean continued forward until he was crouched infront of Sam again, and Sam's eyes didn't know which family member to look at, going back and forth between the two.

Dean took away his choice when he lifted Sam's chin again and Sam found himself staring at the ceiling, wincing a little when Dean gently rubbed a corner of the towel over the slowly drying blood running down his neck.

"How bad?" John asked Dean.

Dean removed the towel to take a closer look at his little brother's throat, squinting his eyes a little. He gave a little shake of his head and brought the towel back up. "Far too shallow to do any sort of damage." He reassured.

John breathed deeply and walked to the back of the couch, leaning his hands on the cushions. He locked his arms and leaned forward a little, taking a deep breaths through his nose. It did nothing to calm him down. "Fuck!" He whispered out harshly as he kicked the back of the couch. "What the fuck were you thinking?!" He demanded, staring at Sam. "Well?!" He shouted as Sam stayed silent.

Sam clenched his fists as he rested his arms on the arms of the chair. "What do you want me to say, Dad?" He mumbled, frowning a little when Dean gently placed the plasters on his neck.

"I want you to tell me what the hell you were thinking! I want you to tell me why I shouldn't lock you in that room upstairs and blister your ass fucking purple; I want you to tell me why the hell I should let that Bitch live!" John retorted angrily, pausing for a moment to take another deep breath. When he spoke again, his voice was much calmer but no less angry. "What. Were you. Thinking?!"

Sam let his chin come down as Dean stood from his crouched position to stand infront of him with his arms crossed.

"I was thinking about getting you two away from Jess." He whispered, keeping his eyes down. He took a deep breath and looked up at them, his voice growing steadier. "She doesn't deserve this. It was me that ran away three years ago. It was me that stayed away. She had nothing to do with it. She's just an innocent girl who had no idea what she was getting into when she met me. I chose to talk to her; she had no idea that I wasn't suppose to. If anything, you should be thanking her, instead of hurting her. She took care of me when you two couldn't, she was there for me when I needed someone, she made sure I ate when I forgot..."

"We should have been doing that, Sam, not her!" Dean interrupted.

"You weren't around to do it..."

"And who's fault was that?" John spoke up.

"Mine!" Sam shouted back. "That's what I'm telling you. It was my fault, not her's!" Silence filled the room after Sam's outburst. Sam winced a little at the sting on his neck from the cuts and lifted his hand to gently touch the plasters but Dean grabbed his wrist before he could.

"Don't touch." Dean ordered softly. "And don't talk." He instructed further after he saw the wince Sam had tried to hide. Dean let out a heavy sigh, turned his back to Sam and walked a few steps before stopping infront of the window. He stood there, staring out as the silence in the room became heavy.

Sam swallowed, trying to ignore the sting in his eyes as his vision blurred a little. He blinked the tears away before they could fall and stared at Dean's back. "Dean, please..."

"No talking, Sam." Dean interrupted firmly, worried that Sam would irritate the cuts on his throat. A few seconds of silence went by before Dean spoke again, still staring out the window. "You're right, though. You did start this; you chose to disobey, you chose to hide, you chose to talk to strangers when you knew you weren't allowed to. And we will deal with that later; together, as a family." He paused for a few moments before continuing. "But she still has to pay for what she did."

Sam frowned, confusion and anxiety rolling around in his stomach. He opened his mouth to demand 'Why, what the hell did she do, have you not listened to a word I've said', but Dean beat him to it.

"She was still apart of your life when she wasn't suppose to be. She still pushed herself into your home when she had no right to step past the threshold. She still wormed her way into your bed, into your heart, when you were alone and vulnerable. She still touched what wasn't her's to touch..." Dean listed, and would have continued going but Sam interrupted him.

"I told you! None of that was her..."

"SAM!" Dean yelled, spinning around to face his brother. "What have I told you about talking?" He said firmly. "You lost that right, for the time being, when you tried to cut through your vocal cords!" He shouted before calming himself down. The soft tone of his voice scared Sam more than the yelling. "I don't know where, or when, you first got the idea that it was okay to disobey us, talk back to us the way your doing, or ignore what we tell you, but it stops now. Understood? I never tolerated it when you were a kid and I sure as hell ain't letting you get away with it now; we raised you better than that." He pointed a finger at Sam before placing his hands on his hips. More silence filled the room as Dean looked around, not seeming to be able to keep his eyes on one thing; the floor, the wall, the stairs, John, Sam, the wall, the floor. Eventually he decided on the floor. After a moment he lifted his hand and wiped it over his mouth, down his chin, before dropping it back down to his side. "Dad."

John looked over, eyebrow raised in question.

"Take Sam upstairs, please. Make sure he stays there." Dean requested.

Sam sat straighter, looking from one family member to the other as his Dad started walking towards him. "No, Dean..." He tried to protest.

Dean turned away and looked through the window again. "Do as your told, Sam." He ordered softly.

Sam flinched away from the hand John laid on his shoulder. "No..." He was panicking again. He could feel his stomach turning, his heart speeding up; wanted to fall to his knees and beg, wanted to throw the nearest object and scream about the unfairness, the wrongness, of what they were doing. But before he decided which one he wanted to do, John gently but firmly took hold of his arm.

"You're not too big to be carried over my shoulder, Son." John warned, staring into Sam's eyes and letting his youngest know that he was serious.

Knowing his Dad would actually do it if he needed to, Sam let out a shaky breath and stood up, keeping his head turned away from his family when he felt the tears start to fall. John led Sam to the stairs, making sure to keep his hold on his son's arm firm and unyielding. Just as they were about to climb the stairs, Dean spoke, not looking away from the window.

"Everything will be okay, Sammy." He reassured softly. "You just be good and everything will be okay."

Sam didn't reply; just turned his head away from his brother and stared at the floor as John gently pushed him forward again.

Dean listened to their footsteps on the stairs, staring out the window at the green trees that surrounded them. Sammy may not see it now, but Dean was doing this for him. If Dean allowed this girl to live, if he allowed Sam to stay in a...relationship with her, then Sam's life would basically be over.

Dean could just picture it now - the happy couple, all lovey-dovey in the beginning, all hugs and kisses, and flowers and hearts and all that shit, going out on dates were the Bitch would dress up in a beautiful dress that hugged her curves and Sam dressed all smart, with a tie and shit. The girl would get use to the nights out, to being wined and dined, to Sam spoiling her with necklaces and a couple of years Sam may propose, they'll have a glamorous wedding where she can show off Sam to all her family and friends...a couple of years after that and they'll probably have kids.

They wouldn't be able to go out on dates anymore, Sam wouldn't be able to spend his money all on her; he'll have babies to support. Sam will work all hours of the day in a crappy dead-end job that he'll hate but will carry on working there because it pays the bills. Jess would hate the weight she'd put on from being pregnant, would look in the mirror and miss the days were dresses hugged her tight, would start pestering Sam to wine and dine her again but Sam would be too stressed and tired from work. Jess would become resentful. Arguments would start off small; Sam forgot the milk on his way home, Jess didn't tidy the living room - but she was too tired to do it after looking after the kids, and Sam was too tired to remember the milk, and 'damnit, Sam, can't you do anything right', and no! Dean wouldn't let that happen.

He couldn't allow this girl to destroy his brother like that, to slowly leech the life out of his Sammy. It was better if he ended it now, save Sam from that kind of future.

Dean let out a heavy sigh. It was better if Dean put his brother through a little pain now, pain that will heal in time, than to allow this girl to make Sam suffer for the rest of his life.

Dean nodded to himself, let out another sigh, turned from the window, collected the knives that was still on the couch and marched his way into the kitchen. He stood at the basement door, looking down the stairs. He smirked a little to himself...

...Sure, he was doing this for Sammy - but that didn't mean he couldn't have his own fun along the way.

John tenderly pushed Sam down to sit on the end of the bed. His son hadn't said a word on the way up, and even now Sam just sat there with his head down as tears fell off his face. John frowned in concern and sympathy, stroking Sam's hair. They stayed like that for a few minutes in silence. Pictures of Jess being tortured was running through Sam's mind, and pictures of Sam cutting a little deeper and bleeding out was running through John's.

Eventually, John sighed and crouched down infront of his youngest. His hand slowly moved from Sam's hair, down his face, until it stopped to rest on his collarbone, his thumb stroking Sam's neck, just under the bandages.

"You scared the hell out of me, Sammy." John confessed in a whisper. "If your hand had shook too much, or you tripped and fell, or..." He cut himself off. He had to. Those images...if he carried on with those thoughts than he was gonna throw up. He had to get it together; lock it all in a box and push it to the back of his mind - his son needed him.

"You don't understand, Son. We get that. We don't want you to understand." He paused long enough to sit beside Sam on the bed. He placed his arm around Sam's shoulders and pulled him closer. Placing a kiss on his baby boy's forehead, he let his lips linger as he whispered. "All you need to know is that we love you. And that we'll do anything and everything to make sure you're safe. And that if you ever do anything like that again, you can bet your very soul that I will lock you away in the most protected and padded room I can find." He leaned away a little so he could see Sam's face, but kept his arm around his shoulders. Throughout John's speech, Sam still hadn't looked up from the floor but John didn't let that bother him; Sam always had trouble making eye contact when he was in trouble.

"But for right now..." John continued, still keeping his voice low and soft. " about we clean you up a little, get you into some sweatpants and a nice dry top, and settle you down. Huh?" He lightly nudged Sam with his shoulder, and ignored the fact that it was only half 2 in the afternoon. Sam looked exhausted and a few hours sleep was just what he needed. "I'll even make you some hot chocolate, okay?" He smiled fondly, remembering how his son had always demanded a hot chocolate before bed when he was a little boy.

He squeezed Sam's shoulder before he stood, moving his hand back to Sam's hair. "Come on, Kiddo. Let's get you settled."

The basement was a typical room from a cliched horror movie; dark, damp and dreary, it wasn't a place you willingly spent your free time. Unfortunately, the unconscious girl tied to a chair in the middle of the room didn't have the luxury of deciding to be here willingly.

Dean stood infront of her for a moment, watching her chest rise and fall, a strand of her hair wafting through the air as she breathed out. Hate was filling him up again as he stared at her. She looked all sweet and innocent. Dean scoffed; he wasn't fooled.

He turned and started walking to his right, where a small table stood, and neatly laid the knives on top of it. Turning back around, he circled around Jess, considering what way to wake her up. He stopped when he stood infront of her again and decided to just get on with it.

"Rise and shine, Bitch!" He shouted as he brought his hand up and let it fall back down, backhanding her hard.

Jessica jolted awake, a little whimper leaving her lips as she felt the sting on her cheek. As she came more into the land of the living, she felt the headache that was beating a fast rhythm against her skull and let out a long moan. She slowly moved her head back and forth, trying to figure out what had happened and where the hell she was, but her brain wasn't cooperating. The world around her felt slow and the dizziness she felt wasn't helping.

"Yeah." Dean drawled out, watching her. "I can imagine that mountain sized lump on the back of your head giving you a hard time." He smirked. "You have my Dad to thank for that. I mean, I would have loved to have the honour but I was busy." He crouched down infront of her and stayed silent, allowing her to wake up more.

After a moment of Jess's eyes frantically sweeping the room, she looked wide-eyed at Dean, terror written all over her face.

Dean's smirk widened. "Hey, Sweetheart. You back with me?"

Jess tried to lean away but soon realised she couldn't go far. She looked around again, hoping to see Sam. She frowned when she couldn't see him and didn't recognize where she was. How long had she been out?

"W-where...?" She tried to ask but her mouth was dry and her head injury was still making everything a little fuzzy.

Dean stood. "Basement." He walked over to the table and leaned against it with his arms crossed.

Jess sealed her lips together to stop the whimper that wanted to come out. She was alone - in a dark basement - with a unstable, deranged, madman who had a personal vendetta against her. Sam wasn't around; there was no one to take Dean's attention away from her, no one to plead and beg for her life, no one to save her. She was alone.

Where the hell was Sam, anyway? Why would he leave her alone with his brother? Did...Oh, God, did they do something to him? Sam said they wouldn't hurt him, but what if they had finally snapped, what if Sam had pushed them too far, what if he had argued and they had hit him to shut him up but they accidentally hit him too hard and he fell and cracked his head, what if...

"Ahh!" Jess yelped in surprise pain and whipped her head around to look at her left arm. It was bleeding from a little cut that wasn't there a second ago. Looking up, she spotted Dean standing infront of her.

Dean waved the knife around, making spots of blood from the sharp tip fly off and land on the floor. "You spaced out on me." He explained. "Very rude." Moving fast, Dean slashed down and made another cut just before the first on Jess's arm.

Jess flinched and whined in pain. She stared at Dean for a moment, breathing heavily in fear. "What..." She swallowed. "W-what want?" She asked, her voice shaking.

Dean chuckled as he turned and walked back to the table. "What do I want?" He repeated slowly, turning back to face her as he, once again, leaned against the table, resting his hands on the surface either side of him. "Well, a fancy beach house would be nice. A million dollars in the bank would be nicer. And I've been wanting to take a vacation to the Grand Canyon for years now." He mocked before turning serious. "But I'll settle for keeping you the hell away from my brother."

"Sam wants to be with me." Jess disputed.

Dean turned the top half of his body to pick up a larger knife. "Sam doesn't know what he wants; he's a kid." He slowly strolled towards her, twirling the knife in his hands. "Besides..." He paused as he stopped to stand infront of her again. "What he wants doesn't mean it's what he needs." He pointed the knife at her. "And he sure as hell doesn't need you screwing up his life."

"I don't...!" Jess cut herself off when the tip of the knife touched her right arm. "Please..." She whimpered. "I don't...I don't screw up his life, he's happy with me, he's..." She clamped her lips tight together and whined low in her throat as the knife made another cut.

"Happy?" Dean snapped, instantly pissed off. "You think you make him happy?" He brought his fist back before swinging it down and smashing it into the side of her face. "You'll do nothing but make him miserable!" He brought his other hand up and punched her again. "You can't offer him anything!"

Another punch to the face.

"You can't keep him safe!"

And another.

"Or fed..."

And another.

"...Or clean..."

And another.

"...Or warm..."

Two more hits to her face and Jess couldn't see out of her left eye.

"No one knows how to take care of Sammy but me!" Dean delivered one last hard swing before storming off to the table. "You think you can make him happy? That you can look after him better than me?" He picked up the largest knife on the table and marched back over to her. "You think you're so damn special? What can you give him that I can't?!" He raised the knife and was about to plunge it into her arm when she spoke.

"A baby!" Jess screamed out. Her face was swollen, her lips and nose bleeding, she couldn't see through her left eye and she could taste blood at the back of her throat.

Dean paused, the knife stopping in mid-air. "What?"

"Please..." Jess begged. "You kill me...than you''re killing a part of your brother." She stuttered out, keeping her head down.

Dean stared at her, frowning. "You're lying."

Jess tiredly shook her head, letting out a small sob. "I'm not." It took all her strength to lift her head and look Dean in the eye. "I'm pregnant. Sam's the father."

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