Three days earlier, Sam had convinced Dean to drive to Sedona in pursuit of a 23-year-old female psychic.
What they'd found had been a disappointment. The "psychic" turned out to be twenty-eight, and she'd been arrested twice for check forgery. Entertained by the town's bogus New Age tourist industry, they had stuck around anyway. It turned out to be a good thing. That morning, they discovered an elaborate con game unfolding, the phony psychic at its center.
It was outside their usual area of expertise, but protecting the life savings of widows and orphans felt damned good. After tipping off the cops, he and Dean went to a bar to celebrate.
Sam's second drink went right through him, so he left Dean to take a leak. He returned just in time to see a woman put something into Dean's beer.
He'd been suspicious of her from the get-go. In her early twenties, she was thirty years younger than the rest of the Wednesday night crowd in the workingman's bar. But then he was always suspicious of the women who approached Dean.
There were forty feet and twenty people between him and Dean. He could shout something, but he didn't want to tip the woman off, and he was sure he could get to Dean in time.
The woman saw him coming, handed the beer to Dean, making a toast Sam couldn't hear. When she downed her beer, Dean followed suit.
There was no longer any need for stealth. Sam shoved people out of his way and yelled, "Dean! Grab her!"
They marched her out to the Impala, where a couple of quick tests proved she was merely human, and not possessed. Sam was ready to drive her somewhere for a long interrogation, but a glimpse of the Impala's contents was enough to make her confess.
She showed them the folded piece of paper, the hundred bucks, and the photo of Dean someone had put into her purse. Handwritten on the paper, which still had powder clinging to it, was: For a good time, give to Dean Winchester.
She didn't know what the powder was. She didn't know who had given it to her. She didn't know anything.
Sam confiscated the cash, the photo of Dean, and the note. Dean said, "On second thought," and grabbed her purse.
Until they knew what she'd put in the beer, operating heavy machinery was out for Dean. Sam got behind the wheel and accelerated out of the parking lot before Dean had finished buckling his seat belt.
"Where the hell are we going?" Dean asked.
"Flagstaff. We have to get your stomach pumped." Sam couldn't believe he had fucked up so badly. He was supposed to watch Dean's back, not let girls slip his brother roofies.
"Hell, no!" Dean said. "Have you actually seen that being done? Whatever she gave me wasn't poison. It's been almost thirty minutes, and I feel fine."
"Calm down, Sam! The note said For a good time. Sounds like a prank, not a murder attempt."
"Call Bobby," Sam said. "Now."
Dean hit a button on his cell phone and waited. "Hey, Bobby, it's Dean. Sam's freaking out because a woman put something in my drink. It was probably just an aphrodisiac, but you know my brother–"
"Give me that." Sam tried to grab the phone.
Dean switched the phone to his right ear. "Anyway, he's taking me to the Outback Steakhouse right now, 'cause he knows protein slows everything down and it beats the hell out of getting my stomach pumped."
"Fine, whatever," Sam said. He changed direction, angry because he hadn't remembered the protein thing.
"Call me when you get this message, Bobby, so we can laugh our asses off at him." Dean switched his phone off.
Sam turned on the radio and swiveled the tuning knob, looking for the loudest droopiest indie rock he could find.
During the drive to Sedona, Dean had played the Scorpions until Blackout was permanently lodged in Sam's skull. According to their rules, he could choose the music when he was driving, and Dean wasn't allowed to complain.
If I could tear you from the ceiling,
And guarantee a source divine,
Rid you of possessions fleeting,
Remain your funny valentine.
Don't go and leave me,
And please don't drive me blind,
Don't go and leave me,
And please don't drive me blind.
"Who is this?" Dean said.
"Huh. It's kind of awesome."
Holy fuck. Dean only liked music from the previous century. Either his brother had been replaced by a Mandroid, or the powder in the beer was already talking. Sam sped up, going sixty-five in the forty-five mile an hour zone.
The restaurant was a mile from the bar, four blocks from their motel. He pulled into the parking lot, jumped out of the car, and circled around to the passenger side in case Dean needed help.
Dean pushed the car door open and looked up at him. "Better carry me. I feel faint."
"Jerk," Sam said. But he still stood close as Dean got out.
It was almost eight p.m., so the steakhouse was packed. Sam slipped the hostess twenty bucks to seat them immediately.
When she found them the perfect table, tucked away from the crowd, Sam gave her another twenty. "Would you please order an appetizer for us right away? Buffalo strips. Thanks."
Sam folded his arms on the table and rested his head on top of them for a moment. What a fucking day.
A hand landed gently on his head and began playing with his hair.
"Don't be sad," Dean said.
Shit. It's starting, all right. He grabbed Dean's hands and immobilized them on the table. "You want the prime rib and the cheese fries?" It was what Dean usually ordered at Outback.
"I'm not really hungry," Dean said. "But it sounds great. Sure."
Their server arrived, looking fatigued. Sam snatched his hands away from Dean's and ordered the prime rib, two orders of cheese fries, and grilled chicken.
"What's the biggest dessert you have, Beautiful?" Dean asked the server.
"The Chocolate Chocolate Tower."
"Bring me two. With ice cream. And a glass of champagne. Bring my boy here some champagne, too." Dean's smile could have lit up the Superbowl.
Sam hid his face behind the menu. And his brother wondered why people thought they were a couple.
"I'll go check on your buffalo strips." The server made her escape before Sam could cancel the champagne order.
"Dude, you are going to have to maintain," Sam said.
Dean was still smiling. "Sure, Sammy."
After their server brought them the appetizer and champagne, Sam said, "No booze. We don't know how it will interact."
"Okay," Dean said obediently.
Just in case, Sam moved the two glasses to the edge of the table, as far away from Dean as possible.
Dean picked up a buffalo strip, dipped it in barbecue sauce, and licked it. When the sauce was gone, he dipped it again.
"Don't play with your food," Sam said the fourth time the strip had been dipped and licked.
Dean offered him the strip.
Sam waved their server down. "I want everything to go."
Sam flicked on all the lights in their motel room and started unpacking the food. There was no place to put it except on top of the dresser.
The motel, in keeping with Sedona's tourist industry, had an astrology theme. They were in the Gemini room. Artwork representing the constellation was on every wall. Above the dresser was a poster of Castor and Pollux that made them look like toga-clad Abercrombie & Fitch models.
"Okay, Dean," Sam said when the food was ready. "Come and get it." When Dean didn't answer, he turned around.
"Dean! You're naked!"
"My clothes hurt."
Dean was sitting in the middle of his queen size bed. It had a satin bedspread, dark blue with gold suns and silver moons. He rubbed the fabric, then wrapped it around himself, making a Dean empanada.
"Feels good." Dean sighed happily.
Sam had a flashback to his roommate during freshman year. "Damn it, Dean! I think that girl gave you E."
"It's not E. I took that once," Dean said.
"You took Ecstasy?" Sam was stunned. Dad hadn't even bothered to forbid drugs. They had both known he would have killed them if they had used anything, including pot.
"I was sixteen. I thought if I took it this girl would sleep with me."
"No." Dean grinned.
"So how is it different?" Sam asked, worried. Ecstasy would be bad, but at least he knew what to expect from it.
"This is mellower. Smoother, I guess." Dean caressed the bedspread. "And a hell of a lot stronger." He started unwrapping himself, getting up.
"Stop!" Sam said. "Just stay there. You can eat in bed."
"Yeah? Can I have my cake now?"
He gave Dean the cake, rummaged through their bags until he found a liter of water, and handed it to Dean. Fluids would flush the drug out of Dean's system.
Dean drank a third of the liter in one gulp, ate two bites of cake, and put it aside. "Thanks, Sammy, but I'm not hungry."
Not good. If Dean was thirsty and had lost his appetite, there was probably a stimulant in his system.
"Sam, you have to eat, too." Dean started to stand again.
"I'm eating! See?" Sam popped a buffalo strip in his mouth.
Dean leaned back with his mouth open invitingly.
Sam was confused, until he remembered something they hadn't done for years. He tossed a buffalo strip at Dean. It landed in Dean's mouth.
Dean chewed and swallowed. "Good shot. I'm so lucky you're my brother. I love you, man."
Sam laughed; this was fucking priceless. He had to find his tape recorder and turn it on.
Before he could look for it, Dean's cell phone rang. Sam grabbed it. "Bobby, thank God! I've got my hands full here."
"Yeah, I heard Dean's message. So what's happening right now?"
"Dean took off all his clothes, and he's–"
"Annoying as hell?"
"Yeah, pretty much."
"I know what you're dealing with. Dean is the fourth hunter to get hit by this stuff in the last six months. The good news is it won't last long. He should be fine in the morning. He might feel a little rough, but there won't be any permanent damage. At least not physically."
"Most important, you have to keep him away from everybody, and I mean everybody, because, right now, he can't lie."
"He can't lie? Shit! Do you have any idea who did this to him?"
"I think it's a trickster."
"Because what's more precious to a hunter than his secrets? He blabs those and it's over. Everything else the potion causes is a byproduct, really. It seems to remove every inhibition. And be careful, because it also increases suggestibility. Whatever you do, don't tell Dean to go jump in a lake or something like that, because he'll take it literally."
"But what am I going to do with him?"
"My advice? Tie him up and gag him."
"Oh, that's just great." Sam tossed another buffalo strip at Dean. "I'm sorry, Bobby. I didn't mean it to sound like that. Would it help to get his stomach pumped?"
"It wouldn't. It's not really a drug. It's a hex—a spell, if you don't object to the word."
"Okay. Crap." I'm going to go insane before morning.
"Now I've got to give you the bad news," Bobby said.
"The reason I think a trickster's behind it is there's also an individual twist. For instance, a hunter who was a real tightwad emptied his accounts and gave all his money away to bums."
"It seems to have something to do with the seven deadly sins. Like, with the guy I mentioned, it was greed. So ask yourself–"
"Yeah, thanks, I think I got it. Uh, Bobby? I have to go."
Grimly, Sam turned the cell off. If the choices were gluttony, greed, sloth, wrath, envy, pride, and lust, there was only one possibility. Dean was the biggest man whore who had ever lived; it would have something to do with lust.
"Dean, Bobby said you're going to be fine. It will wear off. So don't worry." Crap. Don't worry wasn't a dangerous suggestion, but he had to be more careful about what came out of his mouth.
"I'm not worrying." Dean unwrapped himself and stretched.
Sam covered his eyes. "Will you at least put on underwear? Please?"
"I hate underwear," Dean said. "It chafes."
Sam looked at his watch. Were there really another nine hours of this to get through? Then he remembered a Valentine's Day present Jess had given him, and dug through his duffle. Yeah, he still had them. Black silk boxers with pink hearts. He only wore them when every other pair he owned was dirty.
"Here. Try these." Sam put them on the bed next to Dean and turned his back. He was starting to get Bobby's point about the gag, because the sounds of enjoyment Dean made when he put them on were obscene.
When it seemed safe, he turned around.
"Did you get these for me?" Dean said, sounding stunned.
"What? No, I–" Sam groaned. It was February the fourteenth. Oh, yeah. It was a trickster, all right. Maybe even the trickster; it had to be one they had run into. Apparently he wasn't as dead as he had seemed. "Yeah, I got 'em for you. Happy Valentine's Day, dude."
"I didn't get anything for you." Dean looked tragic.
Jesus Christ. "You got me the cake, remember? I'm eating it now." Sam sat down on his bed and ate cake while Dean watched him fondly.
It was some serious chocolate. When he couldn't handle any more, Sam opened his mouth to say What do you want to do now? but realized anything that open-ended could be dangerous.
"We're going to watch a movie, Dean. Here. On the TV."
"Great," Dean said. "I love movies."
Of course he did. Right now, Dean probably loved everyone and everything.
Sam went through the TV listings; the cable networks were in on the joke, showing nothing but romantic films for the holiday. There was a choice of Casablanca, When Harry Met Sally, and My Big Fat Greek Wedding. He decided on the last, because he'd never seen it.
They'd missed the first ten minutes, nothing important. While Dean watched the movie, evidently mesmerized, Sam got off his bed and grabbed the phone book from the dresser to look up massage parlors and escort services. In Sedona? Right.
There was nothing. He shouldn't be looking for an easy out, anyway. Dean couldn't be around a stranger. It was frightening to imagine the stuff that might come out of Dean's mouth. The FBI wants me for murder. Also? My brother can kill you with his brain.
Right now, Dean couldn't say anything but the truth. Sam turned off most of the lights, sat on his bed, and looked at Dean, sitting peacefully on his own bed four feet away.
The words were out of his mouth before he knew it.
"Dean, what did Dad tell you before he died?"
When Dean's face instantly scrunched up, Sam jumped off his bed and onto Dean's, grabbing Dean's shoulders.
"Dean, I'm really sorry! I shouldn't have asked, not tonight–"
"Dad loved you, he couldn't have ever done it, so he told me to do it, but he knew I couldn't."
"Shh. Don't worry about it." Way to go, jackass. You're supposed to be taking care of him here. "You don't have to tell me what Dad said. You don't."
"Okay." Dean wiped his face with the bedspread. "Thanks, Sammy. It doesn't matter, anyway. I wouldn't kill you even if you pointed a gun at me." Dean smiled. "Shit, you have pointed a gun at me. Fired it, too."
"I'm sorry about that. I never want to hurt you."
"But you do, Sam. Every day. I love you so much it hurts."
"Look!" Sam pointed at the TV. "She's pretty now! He's going to ask her out!"
Dean immediately started watching the movie again.
Christ, the Trickster was a sick bastard! Dean hadn't been struck by superlust. The Trickster had put love 'em and leave 'em Dean into permanent chick flick mode instead.
At least there were enough romantic comedies to keep them going until morning. And, if that didn't work, there was always rope.
It was after midnight, they were watching Some Like It Hot, and Dean hadn't even yawned yet. With the way Sam's luck was going tonight, there was probably Trickster speed in Dean's system.
Sam was getting tired, but he'd pulled enough all-nighters at Stanford to know the drill. First: caffeine. Second: more caffeine.
Their room had a crappy four-cup coffeemaker and an ancient foil packet of Folgers. He set it up and hit the brew button, even though it would taste like shit. There was NoDoz in the Impala, but he didn't want to leave Dean alone even for a minute.
So far, the movies were a sufficient distraction. Dean sipped water, watched Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon lurch around in high heels, and licked cake frosting off a spoon now and then. He had kept the boxers on, thankfully.
When a commercial break for coming attractions came on, Sam poured himself coffee, started to add powdered creamer, then changed his mind and stirred in melted vanilla ice cream from the cake. He got back on his bed and set the coffee down on the bedside table.
"You're a genius, Sammy," Dean said, looking at his ice cream and coffee combo.
"Thanks. We can watch Sixteen Candles after this, or Return to Me. Which one do you want to see?" It seemed a safe question.
"Who's in them?" Dean asked.
Shit. He'd left the listing over on the dresser. He went to get it, then sat back down on his bed. "Molly Ringwald and Anthony Michael Hall, or David Duchovny and Minnie Driver."
"James Spader isn't in the first one?"
"No, dude, you're thinking of Pretty in Pink." Sam chugged the coffee. Work, please.
"Damn. James Spader is hot. A girl once told me I look like him."
"That's great. So which one do you want to watch?"
"I hate Minnie Driver," Dean said. "Isn't there anything with James Spader in it?"
"No," Sam lied. HBO was showing Secretary. He'd seen it in an art house theatre with Jess, and had almost died of embarrassment and horniness. "We could watch At Home At The End Of The World."
All he'd heard about the movie was that they'd cut Colin Farrell's nude scene, which was probably a good thing. On the downside, Robin Wright Penn was in it, and they'd both had hard-ons for her since The Princess Bride. Dean wasn't showing signs of Trickster-induced lust, but that didn't mean they were home free.
"What's it about?" Dean said.
Sam read the synopsis. "Boyhood pals Bobby and Jonathan both love the same woman. Undaunted, they all try to make a life together—and even have a baby—in 1980s New York."
"Cool! The music should be awesome!"
Sam's head drooped forward for a couple of seconds. Fuck. "Dean, I need you to do me a favor. If I fall asleep, I want you to wake me up. Okay?"
"Are you tired?" Dean looked worried.
Sam suddenly felt intense sympathy for their dad. Taking care of Dean was like taking care of a child. It was exhausting to carefully weigh every word he uttered.
Dean was a hell of a lot more exhausting than a child, though. Children didn't have the cunning and experience to tell when he was lying.
"Yeah, I'm tired, but I don't want to sleep because…" What reason could he give that was at least sort of true? "Because, if I fall asleep, I'll have a nightmare. Okay?"
"Sure. I'll watch out for you." Dean patted the space next to him on the bed.
Why not? He was less likely to fall asleep with Dean slurping frosting beside him. He undressed until he was down to a T-shirt and boxers—ordinary navy plaid boxers, no hearts.
Dean dicked around with the pillows, making Sam take one of his. When Dean offered him part of the bedspread, Sam draped it over his legs just to get Dean to settle down.
At Home At The End Of The World started out well enough. Little Bobby and his big brother had Dean thoroughly engrossed. Teenage Bobby and his nerdy friend Jon also seemed to fascinate him.
Sam relaxed, waiting for Robin Wright Penn to appear and wake him up, when… OH SHIT!
He grabbed the remote and tried to hit fast forward. Not a DVD, idiot. Desperate, he switched the TV off.
"Hey! What're you doing?" Dean complained.
"Nothing, I was looking for the volume." Sam turned the set back on, praying the scene of Bobby and Jon jacking each other off under the covers had ended. It had.
Sam picked up Dean's bottled water and swallowed a few mouthfuls. His heart was pounding. There was something fucking unnatural about really good kid actors.
As bad as that had been, the death of Bobby's big brother was a million times worse. Sam tried to pretend Dean wasn't sitting there with tears running down his face, then gave up.
"You want me to turn it off?" Sam had a lump in his throat that wouldn't quit.
"I have to know what happens," Dean said, sniffing.
Fuck. They were stuck with the movie until it was over. If it got any more depressing, though, Sam was going to throw the TV out a window.
At last the film flashed forward to the part with Robin Wright Penn as Clare.
"I didn't know she was in this." Dean looked overjoyed. "Damn, she's still hot. Her clothes are weird, though. And the music sucks."
When Clare started undressing Bobby, Sam shut his eyes for a moment.
"Sammy, are you all right?"
"I'm fine, but the movie–"
"Come on. Robin Wright seducing a virgin doesn't get you hot?"
Sam shook his head, giving thanks for the bedspread covering his lap.
"We can watch something else if you want," Dean said. "I think this'll have a sad ending, anyway."
Sam switched to Sixteen Candles. He hated Minnie Driver, too.
Sam suddenly came awake with his head on Dean's shoulder.
"What the fuck, Dean! How long have I been asleep?"
"About thirty minutes."
"I told you to wake me up!"
"You didn't say when, though. And you weren't having a nightmare. I can tell when you are."
"Okay. Fine. If I fall asleep again, you have to wake me up in exactly five minutes. Promise?"
"Not four minutes. Not six."
"I get it, dude."
"What time is it?"
He should have asked Bobby exactly when Dean's hex would wear off. Sunrise? That would be the traditional time for a spell to end.
He got up, pulled his laptop out of his bag, and carried it back to Dean's bed. Getting comfortable against the headboard, he checked a weather site.
Sunrise was at six thirty four. At least four hours to go. He turned the laptop off and set it on the floor. He was tempted to ask Dean to let him sleep for another half hour. It might be safer than accidentally passing out from exhaustion, and so far Dean hadn't done anything outrageous, really.
Dean put an arm around his shoulders and hugged him close. "Come on, Sammy, get some rest. You're toast, man."
It was like a siren's song. "I can't, Dean. I have to stay awake." But he leaned against Dean, his eyes closing. Just a couple of minutes.
Dean stroked his hair, which did not fucking help. It was like Dean had a master's degree in hair fondling all of a sudden.
He had to get up, sit in a chair or something, stick toothpicks under his eyelids…
Dean turned the TV off. "Sam, do you ever think about me touching you?"
The question woke him up a little. He pulled away from Dean. "What? No! What do you mean?"
"You mean you forgot?" Dean said.
"Forgot what? Oh."
"I knew you hadn't forgotten," Dean said, observing Sam's fiery red face.
"I didn't forget, but I didn't remember," Sam said.
Dean understood his confusing statement. "I know. Shit, it was, what, eight, nine years ago?"
"Nine." He had been fourteen, Dean seventeen.
Dean chuckled. "It's hilarious, when you think about it. You were all worried because you thought you were behind, developing slowly or whatever. And now look at you." He looked appreciatively.
The bedspread had slipped down to Sam's knees. He started covering himself, then stopped. He didn't have to hide. He could handle this.
Nine years ago, they had been living in a house for once, big enough that he and Dean had their own bedrooms. Dean was in his senior year in high school, and Dad had promised they'd stay put for a change. He went out hunting on his own, or with Pastor Jim, leaving them alone for weeks.
Now that Sam was thinking about it, he could remember it in freakish detail, things he hadn't thought of for years.
Sam was starting high school that year. He was happy, because he and Dean were going to the same school again for the first time since third grade.
Because of the gap in their ages, Dean had gone on to junior high, then high school, leaving him behind. He didn't tell Dean he was happy about it, of course. At fourteen, he was as sullen and uncommunicative as he could be and still escape an ass whipping.
But the high school had an unpleasant surprise for him. The junior high schools he'd attended, all four of them, hadn't had mandatory showers. For the first time, he had to get completely undressed in front of other guys after gym class.
During ninth grade, his classmates changed drastically. Most of them looked like men; he still looked like a teenager. He wasn't the youngest looking—there was one poor kid who wasn't even five feet yet—but he still felt hideously self-conscious. He'd started his growth spurt, and lost his baby fat, but he was grotesquely thin and had no facial hair at all. He was so embarrassed he pretended to shave at school.
He didn't know what else to do, so he talked to Dean, being so evasive and unclear it was a miracle Dean understood. He talked about shaving and being skinny, but, as usual, Dean knew what was really going on:
"Don't worry, Sammy, your dick's gonna get bigger."
Because that was what was ruining his life. Everyone was bigger than he was, even the kid who was only four fucking feet tall.
He wasn't convinced, so Dean offered proof. "I was the same way when I was your age, but then I just started, uh, growing."
But he wanted real proof, so he asked Dean if he could see his dick. Then he asked if he could touch it. No matter what he asked, Dean said, Sure, Sammy.
After that, it seemed logical to show Dean his dick. Dean told him he had nothing to worry about, that he was being paranoid. Then Dean asked, "How big are you when you're hard?"
And that was how, for two weeks, they ended up jacking each other off every day.
It might have gone on a lot longer, but Dad took Dean with him on his next hunt. Dad's excuse was that Dean was about to turn eighteen, and no longer had to be in school by law. The real reason was that he needed Dean on this one. Sam didn't know what they were hunting, but it ran them ragged for four months.
Pastor Jim came and stayed with him, Dad and Dean popping in once a week, but never for more than a night.
Sam's body finally started changing fast. Whiskers sprouted on his upper lip. He gained ten pounds of muscle. His voice deepened. And his dick got bigger.
When the hunt was over and Dean was back permanently, Sam wondered if they would pick up where they left off. But it didn't happen. Almost immediately, they were on the road, staying in motels with Dad.
He supposed it ended because Dean had turned eighteen, which made it illegal. Or more illegal. Not that Dean tended to worry about the law.
The more time passed, the less Sam thought about it. Eventually, one day, he stopped thinking about it entirely.
It was only two weeks, so it didn't count. But that was a lie. Because, after Dean got back, they had done it again, just once. But they had done everything that time. Everything they'd known how to do, anyway.
"I think about touching you," Dean said. "I wanted to tell you that."
Sam struggled to say the right thing instead of the true thing. I think about you touching me, too. "Dean, you wanting to tell me stuff, it's not real. It's happening because of the Trickster's potion."
"Bobby told you I couldn't lie, right? That's all it does. The hex can't make me talk about something if I don't want to."
"We don't know that. The only thing we know for sure is it'll wear off in about three hours, so don't–"
"Say something I'll regret. What I regret is not saying anything until now."
Was it too late to implement the rope and gag plan? Because it was sounding better and better. Besides, Dean looked good tied up with a gag in his mouth…
Sam rubbed his face with his hands. Where the fuck had that come from?
"You're tired. Come on, get some sleep," Dean said. "I'm not going to run off or anything."
Sam didn't feel tired any more.
He was energized, fully awake. Fucking twitching. What the hell was going on? It definitely wasn't because of the Folgers.
"What's wrong, Sammy?"
"Nothing," Sam said, feeling a powerful urge to shout the truth.
He had to have been hexed, too.
Why else would he be lying in bed with Dean, under the same blanket, letting Dean stroke his hair?
He had wondered why the Trickster had only gone after Dean. But the Trickster had laid a trap for both of them. As Dean had said, the bastard had style.
He must have had a smaller dose. Or perhaps Dean's metabolism was faster than his. Or maybe the Trickster had just made sure he took something slower acting. Something that gave him time to go off with Dean alone, instead of freaking out and running to Bobby's.
That woman had been slick. She had timed it so he would see her in action. He had been played, and good.
"I think about touching you all the time," Dean said. "I know it would make you feel better."
"Dean, I don't want to hear it… When?"
Dean smiled. "When you frown at your laptop. When you tap a pen on your lips because you're thinking. When you put your hands in your front pockets. When—"
"Okay, stop," Sam said. He had to keep things—himself—from spinning out of control. "You're right, man, I need to sleep. You need to sleep. We're going to sleep now, okay?"
Dean gripped the bottom of Sam's T-shirt and pulled. Sam automatically lifted his arms so Dean could get it off him. Then Dean shifted the bedspread, drawing it up over them both. The satiny material slithered over Sam's belly and chest, and, fuck, his nipples. It felt so good he wanted to moan.
He didn't moan, but he wasn't entirely silent, either.
Dean reached under the bed, felt around, then showed Sam an unfolded piece of paper with traces of powder. For Sam was written on it.
"The girl at the bar left this in my jacket pocket," Dean said. "I didn't find it until I took my clothes off. I put it in your coffee when you weren't looking."
Dean had given it to him? This couldn't be happening. "Why did you do it? Are you nuts?"
"No, I'm not nuts. I wanted you to feel like I do."
"I thought you couldn't lie!"
"I haven't. I can't. And, right about now, I don't think you can, either. So when do you think about me touching you?"
"Whenever you clean a gun. Or load one. Or fire one."
Dean smirked. "See what I mean about the perks of the job?"
At least it made sense now, why his memory had grown so much sharper. A truth-telling potion was useless if he couldn't remember anything.
The corridors of Sam's mind were opening, and all of them led to Dean. "When you shift gears. When you drum on the steering wheel. When you smile. When you call me Sammy."
"Okay. That's enough," Dean said gently. He pushed the bedspread down to Sam's waist, then laid one hand on his stomach. He stroked upwards, over Sam's chest, back down. "Does that feel good?"
"Yes!" Sam fought to hold still. He'd just found out who'd drunk the superlust potion. He had.
"Do you want me to do it again?"
"Yeah, it's working," Dean said, satisfied. "Now get over here." He patted himself on the chest.
Sam moved until he was half lying on Dean, shuddering when skin touched skin. And he had thought the bedspread felt good.
Dean held him and stroked his back. "Now you know I'm hexed. I want to cuddle, for fuck's sake."
Sam was too distracted by Dean's hand moving up and down to say anything.
"That's what I miss, the cuddling," Dean said. "The sex was fantastic, but the best part was the way you hugged and kissed me when we were doing it."
"Yeah. Want to kiss me now?"
Sam's head was resting on Dean's chest. He slid up and opened his mouth on Dean's, wrapped his arms around him, squeezed.
"That's what I'm talking about," Dean whispered.
Dean pushed his silk boxers down and off, then grabbed the waistband of Sam's boxers and eased them down. Sam sucked in air and blew it out, trying not to come just from the cloth sliding over his dick.
"It'll mellow out pretty soon, I promise," Dean said. "Relax, Sammy."
Sam shifted to get closer, jerked when his dick dragged against Dean's thigh, moaned when Dean pressed against him. Dean's hard-on prodded him below his belly button. It made him impatient, which made his grip tighter.
Dean grunted. "Yeah, that's it. Show me how much you love me."
Sam felt the words down deep.
The hex didn't affect his ability to reason. He didn't feel impaired, as if he was drunk. He could probably drive a car if he had to. The only thing missing was his fear, the sense of dread he'd carried around for months. There was no longer anything standing in the way of what he wanted.
Dean arranged them so they were facing each other, lying on their sides, Sam on his left side, Dean on his right.
Sam could remember lying this way on Dean's bed nine years ago. Dean had been stoked about getting a double.
The first couple of times they'd jacked each other off, there had been at least two feet of space between them. He did Dean, Dean did him, and that had been all.
But Dean had kept embellishing it.
Sam had been jacking him off as usual when Dean slid an arm under him, holding him, silencing any protest Sam might have made by gripping Sam's dick and—sheer genius—matching him stroke for stroke. Sam had to admit it was better that way. It was better when his arm was under Dean and wrapped around him, better when they kissed, better when they tried to come at the same time.
He had thought of it only in terms of sex, judging it by how hard he came. He had never asked why he came harder while Dean kissed him.
He was brought back to the present by Dean pushing an arm under him, holding him close. Dean's mouth tasted like cake.
"Easy." Dean licked Sam's hand, then pulled it to his dick.
Sam latched on, Dean gripped him in return, and Sam said, "Dean!" because Dean was back in his arms, like he'd never left, even though Dean's face was rough with stubble now, his body harder and stronger where it pressed against Sam.
"Fuck, your hand." Dean kissed him sloppily. "It's bigger. It's huge. So's your dick."
Sam tried to move his hand at the same speed as Dean, to do it exactly the way Dean liked it, until Dean gave him the signal. Assuming Dean remembered it.
At age fourteen, Sam came in two minutes. He had learned to hold off until Dean slid a leg over him. That was the signal Dean was about to come.
Back when Dean had been taller than Sam, his leg had rested on top of Sam's thigh. Now his leg was around Sam's waist, his heel digging into Sam's ass, and fuck Sam was coming, and Dean was coming, worrying Sam's lower lip with his teeth, exactly the way he used to, to stop them from making too much noise.
Before, Sam had always pulled away immediately, returned to his bed. This time, it was good to not move, to hear Dean's harsh breathing return to normal, to feel how warm and relaxed Dean was.
Finally Dean stirred.
"Sorry," Sam said. "That was quick–"
"Hey, don't worry about it." Dean smiled and ruffled his hair. "I have a hunch we're about to have a super fast recovery."
Dean went to the bathroom, returned with two towels, and mopped them off. Then he went to his bag. When he tossed a handful of condoms and a bottle of lubricant on the bed, Sam's dick immediately got hard.
"Told you." Dean lay on top of him, shoving his legs apart.
Sam wished the Trickster would show up so he could kiss him. If it weren't for the Trickster, he would be freaked out right now. Instead, he was ready for anything Dean had in mind. They'd never done this. Just jerked each other off, and, that one time, blowjobs.
Dean smiled down at him, moving Sam's left leg around experimentally, until Sam impatiently lifted his leg and hooked it over Dean's shoulder. He raised himself a couple of inches so Dean could reach the lube, which had slid under him.
"Any last requests?" Dean said. "Sorry. Cancel that question. I'll come up with an easier one."
Dean's smug smile was completely familiar. Dean's wet finger circling and rubbing his asshole wasn't.
"Anything ever been up here before, Sammy?"
"Oh you bastard."
Dean grinned. "Answer the question." Before Sam could, Dean slid his finger in.
"Fingers," Sam ground out. "Mine. A girlfriend's."
Dean moved his finger exactly right, a fast push in, a slow pull out, another fast push in. Sam hooked his right leg over Dean's shoulder and tried not to kick.
"A hair brush handle," Sam said. "One of yours."
Dean growled and bit him on the chest. "Which one?"
"It was… Fuck!" Sam lost track of what he was saying when Dean pulled his finger out.
A condom wrapper crackled. Dean was pushing his gloved, lubed dick against Sam within seconds.
"It was black, and the handle was sort of ribbed–"
His body gave way to Dean suddenly. He moaned and clutched at Dean and probably kicked him.
Dean shifted them, Sam assumed to get more leverage, so he moved however Dean wanted him, his hands on Dean's waist to help him anticipate.
"Fuck this," Dean said impatiently. He shoved a pillow under Sam's hips and thrust into him hard.
Sam's arms and legs instantly buzzed, nerveless, so the sensation that mattered could get all his attention.
"That's what they call me."
It beat fingers and hairbrushes to hell and gone. It was the best luck in the world that Dean had been a man whore for so many years, because Dean knew exactly how Sam wanted his ass fucked.
Dean rubbed lube on Sam's dick, started jacking him off while fucking him. They were pressed together so tightly Dean barely had room to move his hand.
When Dean replaced the pillow with his bent legs, his thighs under Sam's ass, Sam's legs had nowhere to go but up.
"Oh fuck Dean I love you." He didn't know it had ripped out of him until he heard Dean answer, "I know you do."
Dean stopped moving, just kissed him, until Sam wished the hex would end so he could feel Dean loving him without it.
"Hey, Sammy?" Dean whispered. "Pay attention, 'cause you're doing me next."
Dean started fucking him again, and that was all it took. Sam came shouting, because he knew exactly how he was going to do it, with Dean on his hands and knees, down on the floor. He'd hold onto Dean's hands and fuck him hard, rough and nasty, until Dean laced their fingers together, and came while saying his name.
Sam's cell phone rang. He ignored it.
Dean answered. "Hey, Bobby."
Sam found his watch on the bedside table. Seven twenty. What a fucking time to call. He felt around the bed until his hand landed on Dean's leg.
"Yeah, I survived," Dean said. "Sam kept me out of trouble. You want to talk to him? He's sacked out, but I could wake him."
Dean could lie again. Recovery complete.
Trying not to look worried, Dean handed Sam the phone.
"Good morning," Sam croaked. He wasn't sure his hex had worn off, so he prayed Bobby wasn't too inquisitive.
"You both made it through in one piece?" Bobby sounded jovial, but Sam could hear the concern underneath.
"Define one piece," Sam said.
Dean gripped his wrist and gently pried the phone out of his hand. "Thanks for checking on us, Bobby. Yeah."
He turned the phone off. "Are you really all right?"
"No fair asking me that now," Sam said. "Yes."
Dean leaned over and touched his hair. Sam pushed against his hand.
"I hope you're safe to leave alone for thirty minutes," Dean said. "I'm starving, and you're going to be. Go back to sleep, Sammy."
When Sam woke up, there was a box of room temperature pizza and a quart of root beer on the bedside table.
He was halfway done with both when the bathroom door opened. Dean came out wearing a towel around his waist, a cloud of steam following him.
Dean sat next to him on the bed, picked up a slice of pizza, took a huge bite, chewed and swallowed. Sam handed him the root beer, watched Dean tilt his head back and drink down most of what was left.
"I'm ready to hit the road when you are." Dean burped. "Did you know we're only a two hour drive from the Grand Canyon? Though you definitely need a shower before I'm letting you in the Impala."
"Ask me a question," Sam said.
"I want to make sure I can lie again." Sam didn't feel back to normal. He was afraid, sure, that was just sane, but the dread, the raw clenching in his gut, hadn't returned.
"Okay. Tell me how much you loved it last night."
Dean toasted him with the root beer. "You're good."
Sam pushed the blankets aside to get up, intentionally ignoring the fact that he was naked.
"Go take a shower, Sammy." Dean didn't look away from him.
"You sure? I could get dirtier."
Dean's open-mouthed surprise quickly shifted into a smirk. "I like to start with a clean slate."
"Fine." Sam stood up, nothing between his skin and Dean's gaze. "Cuddle freak."
"Oh, yeah? I seem to remember someone soaking that cuddling up like a fucking sponge. Bitch."
Sam stopped in the bathroom doorway, gripped the doorframe, and faced Dean. "Cuddle this. Jerk."
Dean looked him up and down, not hiding it any longer, then grinned.
"Something funny?" Sam said, grinning back for no reason he could think of.
"Just thinking about the Trickster. He gave it a hell of a try, but–"
Dean shook his head, then started to get dressed.
Sam went into the bathroom and turned on the shower, then stood under the hot water, bending his knees to get his hair wet.
The bathroom hadn't escaped the astrology theme. The shower curtain had the same silver moons and gold suns as the bedspreads, and the tiles were decorated with Gemini motifs.
One showed two men standing back to back. Put flashlights and guns in their hands, send them after evil, and they could be him and Dean.
He touched the most elaborate tile, which showed two men standing side by side, one pointing a finger up, one pointing down, and wondered if the person who'd made it knew who they really were, the Dioscouri, the divine twins.
Romulus and Remus, Rama and Lakshmana, Michael and Lucifer. One pointed down at the earth, the other up at heaven, to signify the union of opposites, the sacred marriage. In myth, divine twins destroyed monsters, fought to the death, ascended to heaven. Went down into hell itself to save each other.
He was soaping his chest, looking at the tiles, when he got Dean's drift.
The Trickster had tried to smash them to pieces. Arranging it so Dean gave him the potion had been a hell of an evil twist, meant to maximize the emotional damage.
But the Trickster had shown up late to the party. The Winchester brothers were too fucked up for anyone else to ever get a shot at it. They had been broken a long time ago. They couldn't be broken now.
Dean was thumping around on the other side of the wall, packing up. Without bothering to knock first, he came into the bathroom and started dumping stuff into a bag. Then he took a whiz in the toilet and flushed.
Sam got out from under the spray just in time. He waited until Dean was zipped up, then slid the shower curtain aside and hurled a wet washcloth. It landed on Dean's face.
Swearing, Dean yanked it off and threw it back at him.
Sam slapped himself on the chest. "Now get over here."
"And do what?"
Sam gripped a towel bar. His lips moved. And show me how much you love me. No sound came out.
Dean smiled smugly, and started stripping his clothes off. "Wuss."
If I could tear you from the ceiling,
I know the best have tried,
I'd fill your every breath with meaning,
And find a place we both could hide.
Don't go and leave me,
And please don't drive me blind,
Don't go and leave me,
And please don't drive me blind.
You don't believe me, but you do this every time,
Please don't drive me blind.
Please don't drive me blind.
I know we're broken,
I know we're broken,
I know we're broken.
If I could tear you from the ceiling,
I'd freeze us both in time,
Find a brand new way of seeing,
Your eyes forever glued to mine.
From Blind by Placebo