“Okay, let’s just...let’s just talk about this.”
Bobby grinned at him, except it wasn’t Bobby. It was something inside him, not a demon...their tattoos prevented that kind of possession...but something, and Sam had no idea what.
Because Bobby…. Bobby wouldn’t do this to him.
Wouldn’t knock him out.
Wouldn’t strip him bare and then tie him down, lashing him to a tree, with his legs pegged open, the bark rough against his back, twigs and pebble and hard dirt digging painfully into his ass and legs.
“Nothing to talk about, son,” Bobby said.
He stepped back, holding the mallet he’d used to hammer home the pegs helping bind Sam’s legs open so wide his thigh muscles ached.
“See, you’ve done a lot of shit in your time, and I let a lot of it slide, but I woke up this morning, and I wondered why.”
“Shush, now. The blood drinking, taking up with that demon, we’ll let go of that shit when you didn’t have your soul, I guess; then leaving your brother and the angel in Purgatory?”
Sam shook his head, felt the old familiar stab of guilt even though that... “That wasn’t what happened!”
Bobby sighed. “No point in asking if you’re sorry, then. Well, that’s okay. My pa used to help me be sorry, many a time. You’re a little big to be putting over my knee, so I figure this’ll do just as well.”
He took off his cap, wiped his sleeve across his forehead. Sam figured hauling his unconscious ass out here, stripping him and tying him down, yeah, that probably was hard work for Bobby and whatever was riding him.
But it was also getting warm, and Sam looked up to see the glimmer of day breaking over the trees.
Bobby nodded. “Yeah. Sun’s coming up.”
“That’s it?” Sam felt the stirrings of panic. “You’re just gonna leave me out here, in the sun? In the heat?”
Dean and Cas wouldn’t be back for hours yet, and Sam was already praying to them, but the dimension Cas had taken them to, in the hope of finding a weapon they needed for a hunt, was a little too far for his pleas to reach.
“Nah, son.” Bobby tsked him. “If I just wanted you to get sunstroke, I could have pegged you down in the yard. Take a look over here.”
Sam did, watching as Bobby tapped his boot near a suspicious looking mound of dirt a few inches from Sam’s right foot.
“What do you think that is?”
Sam shook his head; he had no idea, but he was betting it was something if Bobby was so interested in it.
And then a tiny black body scuttled out of the top of the mound, paused there, as if checking all was as usual before ducking back inside.
“Bobby,” Sam started, and the old man chuckled.
“That’s right, Sam. And now the sun’s coming up, they’ll be out looking for food, crawling all over the place. Over anything in their way.”
Sam jerked frantically at the ropes, but there was no give, no chance. Even in the few minutes Bobby had been explaining, the sun had risen higher, and the heat had too; light and warmth had fallen over the ant hill, and more of them came scurrying out, a black swathe that wound its way slowly down the hill.
“Bobby! Bobby, please! Please!”
Even if it wasn’t Bobby, he was in there somewhere, and Sam knew he’d once fought demonic possession to save Dean’s life.
But maybe he didn’t have that in him, anymore, because he just looked Sam’s naked body over once, and then walked away chuckling.
Or maybe he just didn’t have it in him for Sam.
The first of the ants reached his foot, and he felt a furious itch as they either decided he was in the way, and to go over him, or that he was something they needed to explore.
But there were others, heading between his legs, to someplace Sam definitely didn’t want them being.
There wasn’t a damn thing he could do to stop them, and then they were on him, in him, scuttling over his dick, up his torso, in his belly button, over his nipples, and…
please, please, Cas, Dean, help
“Sam. Sam, dammit, stop! Sam!”
It was hands holding on to him, holding him down, not ropes. Hands, and he knew that touch, and let it settle him.
He sagged back down onto the bed, body soaked in cold sweat, and opened his eyes.
Dean was standing over him, his hands around Sam’s wrists, pinning them against his chest.
“Okay. You calm?”
He nodded, tried to speak, but his voice felt caught in his throat.
Dean helped him sit up, and held a glass of water out to him.
Sam sipped it, realised he’d been dressed in soft flannel PJs, and that he was in his own bed at the yard.
Dean nodded, and his face turned dark.
“Cas is down there with him, now. You’re okay, he healed you up, said to let you sleep it off. He’s trying to figure out what’s in Bobby, how to get it out.”
It made him feel like shit, but if Cas was having trouble freeing Bobby, then it wasn’t for lack of trying that he’d been unable to free himself, even for Sam’s sake.
It hadn’t meant he just wasn’t willing to put in the effort.
“Will he be okay?”
Dean nodded. “Cas is pretty sure he can get it out of him. It’s shit talking all three of us, trying to find a weak spot.”
Sam looked away. It had found it in him.
Dean nudged his shoulder. “Hey. I can guess what it said to you. Me, and Cas, we got it as well. Thing’s reading Bobby like a bestseller. But we both know nothing’s that black and white, not for us. And whatever it says, we’ve moved through it and past it. And the four of us, we’re still family.”
There was a knock at the door, and Dean looked up as Cas came in, and someone was behind him.
Sam flinched, hated that he’d done it, but part of him was still tied to that tree, still burning as things crawled and bit, still screaming for help with nobody nearby to listen.
Bobby took off his cap, and looked brokenly from Cas to Dean and then back to Sam.
“Can we…. Can we have a minute?”
Sam and Dean both looked at Cas, and the angel nodded, and stepped back into the hall.
“You okay with this?”
Sam stared at Bobby, standing there quietly, but eyes so desperate for a chance.
And Cas wouldn’t have brought him up here if he was a threat. Wouldn’t have stepped outside, or given the indication it was safe for Bobby to be in Sam’s presence at all, never mind alone with him.
“Yeah,” he said. “I’m okay.”
Dean gave Bobby a sharp look, and then he went to join the angel in the hall, pulling the door over behind him, but not, Sam noticed, fulling closing it.
Bobby didn’t come any closer though, as if there was some invisible border he couldn’t cross.
“Bobby,” Sam said.
This was their Bobby, not the thing that had hurt them. And hadn’t Sam been in this very position, not himself, and after faced with the awareness of all the things he’d done during that time?
And hadn’t they all forgiven him?
That was the only way this family worked.
“It’s okay,” Sam said, and then he held out his hand.