Part Six

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Dean watched Sam closely as he processed this strange turn of events. It took Sam a moment to pull it together enough to form a coherent question.

"Wha-what?" OK, so maybe not an articulate question, but at least Sam was awake now. The doctor said that his throat had swollen up so much he wasn't getting any air; he was oxygen deprived for nearly two minutes.

That was last night; it was now about three in the afternoon, and Dean wasn't the only one who had begun panicking when Sam remained unresponsive for so long. The hospital staff determined that Sam wouldn't suffer any permanent damage, since they had gotten him on a ventilator quickly enough, but none of them could tell Dean why it took his brother so long to wake up.

Dean shifted in the hard hospital chair. One of the nurses – a cute one with blonde pigtails and a perky smile – had brought him a cushion last night, but it still wasn't ideal. He exhaled a loud breath. Sam waited with an eyebrow quirked for the explanation behind the bizarre statement.

"Remember that girl who was staring at you back at the bar?" Dean waited for Sam to nod. Sam shuddered lightly, too, and Dean frowned. "Well, turns out she's a witch. Not the real deal," Dean dropped his voice for the benefit of any passing medical personnel. "Just a wannabe with a freaking powerful recipe for making people fall for her. She must've slipped something into your drink or something."

Sam's eyes roved away from Dean distractedly. Dean waited while Sam thought, trying not to let his apprehension show.

"She had a charm, too." Sam said finally, returning his gaze to Dean's. At Dean's confused expression Sam elaborated, bringing his left hand to his neck to illustrate his point. "Her necklace; it had a charm on it. Looked old; might have been Faery."

"Ah. Yeah, I noticed that, too. I told Bobby to keep an eye out, but she was long gone by the time I got back. Bobby wants you to call him, by the way; he wouldn't believe me when I told him you'd be fine." Dean shifted restlessly in his seat.

Sam's eyes narrowed suspiciously. "What aren't you telling me?" he asked. He was using his bitch voice.

Dean shrugged. His shoulder protested; he had spent the last seven hours in the exact same position, and it felt like it. "You were out for a while." He said vaguely, hedging around uncomfortable facts.

"How long?"

Dean sighed deeply; "Sixteen hours, give or take."

"Shit."

"Pretty much."

The boys sat in silence for a time. Sam changed position and the motion tugged on Dean's wrist; he was still holding Sam's hand. He let go quickly, belatedly hoping that Sam wouldn't be hurt by what he might possibly construe as some kind of rejection.

Damn; he was going soft.

Sam smirked at Dean. "Wow, you must've been pretty worried about me, huh?"

"Shut up, Sam."


The End