A Close Relationship with Carpet Fibres
Summary: Sam wakes up on the floor. Epilepsy 'verse.
Sam wakes up on the floor.
The images are raw inside his brain, searing and vivid and he tries to sit up but the urgency in his mind doesn't extend to his limbs and his muscles protest the sudden attempt at movement with a roar that presses him flat a moment before Dean does. A moan forms in his throat, sliding past his lips before he can stop it, and he feels Dean lean in closer, even though his eyes are still shut.
“You're okay, kiddo,” Dean promises quietly. His hand moves from Sam's chest to his forehead, palming sweaty strands of hair away from Sam's face. “Just chill out for a minute. Breathe. You're okay.”
Sam tastes blood; he must have bitten his tongue, and his shoulder hurts where he must have first made contact with the floor. There's a tangle of sheets around him, half-dragged from the bed he must have fallen from, and there's a blonde woman screaming for help inside his head. The memory of Jess swells up beside her; Jess and the way her lips stretched in a silent scream as fire erupted from the ceiling, the way the flames made her glow like something mythical and magical as she burned, first in his nightmares and then in real life.
Sam rolls onto his side and presses his face against Dean's knee, sleep-warm and solid, feeling Jess's absence like a hole in his chest, deep and black and empty. He sucks in a shuddering breath, like Dean ordered, and the world slows it's spin. Dean's hand rubs up and down his arm, sturdy and calloused and not at all like Jessica's soft touch but steadying nonetheless, familiar in a way that feels like home.
Suddenly, Sam recognises the house that the screaming woman is trapped in.
“We have to go back,” he realizes. “We have to go back to the beginning.”
Dean is tense and snappy, his jaw set unhappily. He tells Sam that he swore he wouldn't go back there, argues weakly that there's no reason to dig up the past, but Sam is more worried about the future and Dean can't seem to find an argument for that so, tense and snappy, he drives.
“I don't like this,” Dean growls, knuckles white around the steering wheel. “What the hell is going on, Sam?”
Sam shakes his head. “I don't know.” He'd been so ready to believe Dean's reassurances after telling his brother about his nightmares, about the images that flashed before his eyes while his body seized, so desperate for everything to be okay, to be normal and safe, but it wasn't. It's not. Maybe it never will be. “I don't know but I saw Jess die, Dean. I saw it and then it happened. The lady in our old house is in danger.”
“So, what?” Dean barks. “Your seizures show the future now? Like some kind of psychic thing?”
Anyone else would think that Dean was angry. He sounds angry but Sam can tell he's scared. “I don't know,” Sam says again. He's too tired to think, too tired to be scared or angry or anything right now. He leans his head against the window, hoping that the cool glass will soothe some of the ache that sits behind his eyes, thick and heavy, and wishes he could think of something to say other than 'I don't know'.
Dean glances over at him and his grip on the steering wheel loosens a fraction. “Get some sleep,” he orders stiffly. “I don't know if you had a bad dream or a vision or what but I do know that you seized for two and a half minutes so if I'm driving to freaking Lawrence, the least you can do is get some rest.”
He says it like he's settling an argument that Sam doesn't remember starting but he's all too willing to concede imaginary surrender and let Dean hold on to some semblance of control by mumbling, “Okay”, and settling down more comfortably against the door. He closes his eyes and gives in to the insistent pull of sleep.