Title: Song Sung Blue
Genre: Gen, Weechesters
Characters: Wee!Dean, John
Spoilers: None, but oblique sideways references to season 5 themes if you squint with your head held on one side.
Summary: Dean's a good kid. But he's acting weird.
Disclaimer: If I owned them they'd be mowing my lawn. Shirtless.
A/N: Blame bjxmas, Jensen Ackles and Jason Manns for this one.
And apologies to anyone looking for a Virtual Season story. Sorry. I'll get to it. See above.
SONG SUNG BLUE
Dean Winchester was probably the best behaved nine-year-old his father had ever encountered.
Not that John had encountered a lot of nine-year-olds.
Not since he'd been nine himself.
But as nine-year-olds went, Dean was a good kid.
He was no angel, that was for sure, especially when his little brother encouraged him to do half-assed things like putting plastic army men in Bobby Singer's new-fangled microwave just to see what happened.
Sometimes, John would swear Sammy had the Devil in him.
Not that Sam, at five, was a bad kid.
Far from it. Sammy was curious. And Sammy had his big brother twisted around his little finger. And curious plus whipped often equaled stupid when it came to his boys.
But whipped or not, Dean's devotion to duty—or Sammy—or whatever—was also what made him a good kid. He always watched out for his little brother when John wasn't around. And, come to think of it, he always watched out for his little brother when John was around, too.
Sam's first word had, after all, been "Dean."
And it wasn't that Dean wasn't his usual obedient self today either. He must have offered to clean the weapons and wash the Impala six times since John got back from Jefferson's stupid Djinn hunt—the Djinn that had turned out to be a mischievous faerie who, like John's youngest son, wasn't bad. She was just curious.
So it wasn't that. It wasn't Dean hovering by John's back pocket for the best part of the afternoon, calling him "sir" and offering to clean the weapons and wash the Impala.
Those things were all pretty much par for the course for Dean.
No, it was the way he did it, the way he had virtually stood to attention the entire three hours since John got back to Pastor Jim's place, the way he seemed to shy away from the holy man, glance at him from under his eyelashes when he didn't think he was looking, pretty much hide behind his dad every time John's old friend came into the room. That really wasn't Dean.
It was almost as if he was feeling guilty about something.
Of course, asking Dean what was up got a shrug and a, "Nuthin', sir."
Asking Jim got a, "You'd better ask Dean, John."
And asking Sammy got a, "Where did you go and who were you with and what were you doing and why couldn't me 'n Dean come with you and can we have ice cream and where does Mickey Mouse live and why can't we go there and why is the sky blue?"
Which, to be fair, was pretty much par for the course for Sammy too.
But something was obviously wrong.
Dean was helpful. Dean was pleasant. Dean was good.
But Dean wasn't Dean.
"So, c'mon, bud," John had said finally, forcing Dean to sit next to him on Pastor Jim's old but serviceable sofa. "At ease for a sec."
Dean sat down. This time looking up at John from under lowered lashes. "Yes, sir."
"None of that 'yes, sir' crap, kiddo."
Dean looked up at him uncertainly.
Dean opened his mouth to speak.
"You say 'nuthin'' I swear to God I'll make you answer every question Sam asks you for a week."
"I already answer every question Sam asks me," Dean returned, a tiny smile for a second undermining the forced stoicism.
John sniggered. "Yeah. I guess you do. Lucky me, huh?"
Dean nodded. "Lucky you, Dad."
"So," John pressed on. "Up. What is. You wanna tell me?"
Dean shrugged. "Nuth—" He stopped and shrugged again, lowering his eyes to his knees where he picked at a loose thread on his jeans.
Dean sighed heavily. "I'm not a girl," he said shortly.
Okay, that John hadn't been expecting. "I noticed."
"So." Dean looked up at him like that was an answer.
"So," Dean confirmed.
"Okay," John nodded. "So far we've got that you're not a girl. That's good because your mom and I would have been pretty stupid to call you Dean if you were."
Dean squinted at him. "It's not funny, Dad."
"You tell me what 'it' is and I'll tell you whether it's funny."
Dean sighed again. "Sammy'll think I'm a wuss."
"Why would he think you're a wuss?"
Dean shifted uncomfortably. "I'm not a wuss."
"No. And not a girl. See? I'm totally following this conversation."
Dean squinted at him again. "You wouldn't do it."
"I wouldn't do what?"
Dean rubbed his hands together between his knees and looked away. "I'm not a wuss. And I'm not a girl. And I'm gonna be a hunter someday. So I can't. 'Cause it's wussy. And I don't have time 'cause I gotta look after Sammy. And Sammy'll laugh. And we'll be leaving soon, so what's the point?"
Dean stopped for breath, and John realized his chin was wobbling as if he was going to cry.
Dean didn't cry either.
"Oookay," John said slowly. "So if you don't want to do whatever it is you don't want to do, why are you upset that you're not gonna do it?"
Dean blinked up at him. "But Pastor Jim asked me to."
"Pastor Jim asked you to do what, Dean?"
Dean squirmed on the sofa, and looked as if he might rabbit any second.
John caught hold of his hand.
Dean sighed, eyes downcast, looking at John's big thumb rubbing against his little one. "He heard me."
"He heard you what?"
"Last night. He heard me. And he thought it'd be a good idea."
"Okay. So. Pastor Jim heard you…what? Breaking a window? Breaking the sound barrier? Breaking wind?"
Dean sniggered, and John poked him in the ribs.
"Sam couldn't sleep," Dean sighed, sobering. "He can never sleep when you're not there."
John nodded, not entirely sure Dean wasn't talking about someone else rather than Sam.
"And so…he…makes me…"
"He makes you do something that makes him think you're a wuss and a girl and he laughs at you?"
Dean frowned, looking up at his dad with those big green eyes. "No."
"So…whatever he made you do, why would he laugh at you if you did it for Pastor Jim?"
Dean shrugged again.
"And he made you do it last night and Jim heard you?"
"Dean, you ever heard the phrase, 'getting blood out of a stone?'"
Dean nodded. "Uncle Bobby says that all the freakin' time!"
"So you gonna tell me what Sam made you do? And do I owe anyone money to replace anything you two broke?"
Dean shook his head. "No. We didn't break anything."
"He…" Dean hung his head. "He makes me sing to him."
"You sing Sammy to sleep?"
Dean nodded. "It's stupid."
"It's not stupid."
"Yeah it is. It's what girls do."
"Girls like…like you're mom?"
Dean didn't reply.
"And what do you sing to him?"
Dean sniffed. "That stupid song."
"What stupid song?"
"The one…the one she…the one she used to sing."
"The one your mom used to sing?"
Dean nodded again.
"Which one was that again?"
Dean looked up at him. "Hey Jude."
John smiled wistfully. He remembered. Hadn't really needed Dean to tell him.
"That song's not stupid," he said softly.
Dean just looked at him as if he wasn't sure whether to believe him.
"It's the Beatles."
Dean continued to look at him.
"The Beatles aren't stupid."
"And your mom loved that song."
Dean looked down again.
"Do you like that song?"
Dean paused for a second before nodding.
"So why's it stupid?"
"'Cause girls sing."
"Paul McCartney is not a girl, Dean, in case you hadn't noticed. And neither was John Lennon."
Dean blinked at him.
"Robert Plant sound like a girl's name to you?"
Dean shook his head.
"And yet you like Led Zep, right?"
"How about Brian Johnson? You're familiar with AC/DC, I take it?"
"Bad Company? Paul Rodgers? Think he's a girl?"
Dean shook his head.
"Jimi Hendrix? Blue Oyster Cult? Ozzy Osborne? Gene Simmons? Although, sure, kinda sounds like a girl's name."
Dean was staring at him.
"So what did Pastor Jim ask you to do?"
Dean was still staring at him. And he didn't look away when he finally replied, "He asked me to sing in the church choir on Sunday."
John barely managed to suppress a snort. Because laughing? So would not have done Dean's confidence any good right then.
Of course, he wasn't laughing at Dean, because Pastor Jim thought Dean had a nice voice and wanted him to sing in the church choir. Not like Dean was scared he would.
"You don't wanna sing in the church choir 'cause you think Sammy'll laugh at you?"
"And it'll make you a wuss?"
Dean shrugged again.
"And a girl?"
Dean looked at him.
"And you'll be so humiliated it'll follow you around for the rest of your life and you'll never get to be a hunter because everyone will know, right?"
"Dad, that's dumb."
John raised an eyebrow. "It is, huh? Well you don't say!"
Dean looked down at the hole in his jeans. "So it's not stupid?"
"Singing? Or singing in the choir?"
John slid an arm around his boy's shoulders. "Dean, you wanna be a rock star, that's fine by me."
"I wanna be a hunter."
"Well we'll see about that. Right now, you wanna sing in the church choir on Sunday?"
Dean looked up at him a little sheepishly, before nodding, just once.
"Then save me a pew, kiddo."
Dean gazed at him then, a stunned expression on his face. "You're gonna go…to church?"
Dean shrugged. Then nodded. Then shrugged again. "Maybe."
"Okay then. Guess I'm going to church."
Dean blinked at him.
"If that's okay with you?"
And for the first time that day, Dean smiled.
Trust his kid to accomplish something Pastor Jim hadn't managed in four years. Church.
"And if Sammy laughs?"
"He'll have to answer his own damn questions for a week. Deal?"
Dean nodded. "Deal."
"Alright then. Now go destroy something. And stop acting like a girl."
Dean snorted. "Am not a girl."
"Keep tellin' yourself that, Deanna."
"Not a girl. Gonna go play with army men."
"Don't put them in the microwave."
Nine years old.
Dean was a good kid.
Sorry if there are any typos! I kinda wrote this in half an hour when I was supposed to be writing - um - something else!
Drop me a line if you liked it! No pressure!