Title: Beyond Good and Evil
Author: Dhvana
Series: 1) The Monster Under the Bed, 2) A Little Help From Bob, 3) The Temptation of Dean, 4) Questions Without Answers, 5) Don't Lose Your Head, 6) Retribution and Remorse, 7) The Return of an Old Fiend, 8) Undulating Dynamics, 9) Personal Weirdness, 10) On the Road Again, 11) Doubletalk, 12) The Golden Agenda, 13) The Rescue of Dean, 14) Alone, 15) A Learning Experience, 16) A New Life, 17) Two Words
Rating: R
Pairing: Sam/Dean--unrequited, but getting closer.
Summary: Dean tries to decide if they're worth salvaging.


It took about twenty minutes for the pounding on his front door to stop. Dean spent most of that time hiding in the bedroom in the back of the apartment with the door closed and a pillow over his head. It was killing him to have his brother mere feet away after all this time, but he refused to change his mind. He couldn't count on Sam, Sam couldn't count on him--it was better for the both of them that they just went their separate ways.

Yeah, right.

Dean stayed hiding under his pillow until it was time to leave for karate. He hoped that three hours of class would help to clear his mind. If nothing else, the sparring at the end would at least purge him of some of this anxious energy.

He changed clothes, grabbed his keys, and slowly opened the front door, looking first to the left, and then to the right. There was no sign of Sam anywhere. Figured. Trust his baby brother to disappear whenever things didn't go his way.

Uncertain as to whether the feeling inside of him was one of relief or disappointment, he tried to push the whole incident from his mind and concentrate on something else while he walked over to the dojo. He had to admit, there were certain niceties about living in a small town--having just about everything within walking distance was definitely one of them. Except when it rained. The days when it rained sucked beyond all belief, but on a warm, cloudless day like today, it wasn't too shabby, and by the time he reached the dojo, he was almost smiling.

Then he walked inside. There he saw a couple of brothers who looked like they'd seen one too many Bruce Lee movies circling each other, laughing and kicking and punching at the air around them, and his thoughts were thrown back into turmoil. He and Sam used to do that when they were younger. They'd fight off imaginary bad guys while protecting each others' backs, though he'd usually jump in front of Sam when the really big guy appeared, something that always ticked Sam off. He'd yell at Dean to get out of the way, claiming he could take him, but Dean would always refuse.

"You're too little!" he'd yell. "I've got him--you get the rest!"

Of course, then the teen years hit and Sam was no longer the little one, but by then, they'd stopped playing games. Dean would still jump in front of the big guy, but if he didn't happen to be there, Sam was more than capable of taking care of him on his own.

Seeing as how one of the lessons Dean was supposed to be concentrating on was learning how to center himself and focus, the night turned out to be a real trial for him. He didn't even get an hour of sparring at the end because his sensei made him spend the rest of the evening meditating. There was too much negativity flowing through his veins, too many rash thoughts towards Sam, too many fleeting feelings of anger and an aching loss so genuine, he began to regret his hasty decision. It wasn't that he didn't think Sam deserved to get his ass kicked to the sidewalk--he felt pretty damn strong about that. He just didn't know that he deserved to spend the rest of his life without Sam, punishing himself because his brother was a spoiled, selfish brat.

But then, who had taught him to be a spoiled, selfish brat? When had he ever denied Sam anything? Well...besides that. And that was more denying himself than Sam, but otherwise, everything Sam had ever asked of him, he'd given. Unless they were helping someone, Sam rarely put thoughts of others first. He did what he had to do, but beyond that, he lived inside his own little world and it had always been Dean who'd protected Sam from the real one. His brother had seen enough in his life, and Dean had thought it his duty to shelter Sam as much as possible.

Maybe he'd sheltered Sam a little too much. Maybe he should have let Sam take a trip inside his head every once in a while so his brother would better understand the sacrifices he'd made to keep their broken family together.

On the other hand, Sammy wasn't a complete robot. There should have been a little understanding in there somewhere, a little human sympathy, a little compassion. Hell, the boy was a fucking psychic--was a little insight into his head really too much to ask?

Apparently, it was.

Well, fuck him. Dean didn't have to hang around for this. He had his own life to live. Maybe if Sam was lucky, he'd send him an email on his birthday, but that was it. He couldn't wait for his brother to grow up and learn to appreciate what was right in front of him. He just didn't have that kind of time.

Seeing as how these were the thoughts that ended his meditation, the last hour had done Dean little good and he was still fuming when he walked home. He wasn't all that surprised it hadn't helped. He'd never been one to solve his problems by sitting and thinking about them. If something came up that didn't require immediate physical action, he usually either ignored it or delegated it to Sam.

Damnit. That was yet another reason to be pissed off--he was back to doing all his thinking for himself. He hated that.

Dean turned into the sidewalk which led to his apartment and was aware enough of his surroundings to realize there were lights shining through the front windows. Unfortunately, he'd hung sheets over them and could no longer look inside. Fortunately, he was always prepared for this type of situation. He crouched down next to the bush by the front door and dug through the dirt beneath the branches until he found metal box containing one of the guns he'd bought on the sly.

Wishing the apartment had a back door, Dean crept up to the front and tested the knob--the door swung open. He peered around the frame but didn't see anything out of the ordinary. The television was on and he could hear the cheery voices of the late night newscasters talking about local events over the weekend--chili cook-off, book fair, the usual.

There was a rattling sound from the kitchen and he took a tentative sniff. Well, that wasn't right. Someone had broken in his apartment to cook? And to cook something that actually smelled edible no less, very much unlike his usual fare--rubbery hot dogs and chewy macaroni when he didn't bring home something from the restaurant. Maybe they just had the wrong apartment.

Standing up, he stepped inside and froze to see a familiar lanky form standing in front of the stove.

The little shit had broken into his apartment?! Eyes narrowed, Dean slammed the door, and Sam jumped.

"What the fuck are you doing here?"

Sam turned around, about to say something, but his jaw sort of stopped mid-air as he caught sight of Dean in his spotless white Gi. Dean's indignation wavered when faced with the raw hunger in his brother's eyes and he had to fight off the echoing heat in his veins. Christ, it had been a long time since he'd felt that kind of heat. Even the monster in all its beauty was never able to get this sort of reaction from him.

"Dean, what are you wearing?" Sam asked, sounding a little breathless.

"My karate uniform," he answered coldly, trying to keep his body under control. "I teach karate on weeknights, and you didn't answer my question. What the fuck are you doing here?"

"Making dinner. You teach karate?"

"You don't have to sound so shocked. I happen to be an excellent teacher."

"I'm not surprised--I already knew you were great with kids. I just never pictured you actually making an effort to deal with them on a regular basis."

"Gotta pass the time somehow since I was stuck here. Alone. Without my car."

Sam flushed. "Dean, I'm sorry about that. It's just that--"

"Oh, fuck you and your apology, Sammy. It's too late for that."

"Dean, I--" But now that Dean had gotten started, he wasn't about to be stopped.

"You took off!" he shouted. "I could have died, and you just took off."

Sam shook his head, his voice quiet. "I'd have known if you were dead."

"I didn't say I died," he snarled, absently waving the gun for emphasis, though never directly pointing it at his brother. "I said you left me for dead! There's a difference!"


"You didn't even try contacting me, not once in six months!"

"Yeah, well," his brother growled, his own anger rising, "did you stop to think that maybe I didn't want to talk to you? We both know you could sell a furnace to the devil if you tried--you think I was going to give you a chance to worm your way out of this?" He raised his voice to a high-pitched whine. "Sammy, I never meant to hurt you. Sammy, I was only trying to help. Sammy, I did it for you." His voice returned to normal. "I'm not buying any of it, Dean. If you want to sell me a furnace, you're going to have to come up with an excuse a lot better than that."

"You know something? You just keep your banal little colloquialisms to yourself--that's right, you heard me," he said as Sam's eyebrows shot up into his forehead. "Think I've just been sitting around on my ass these past few months? Do you know how tedious normal life is? Do you know how hard it is to fill the days when you've got nothing to do? It's a bitch!"

"So you've been, what, expanding your vocabulary?"

"Among other things. I can only spend so many hours a day hating you before it gets tiresome," he said snidely.

"Tiresome?" Sam rolled his eyes. "Christ, Dean."

"Fuck off, Sammy. You may be the only one with a couple years of college behind you, but you're not the only one with a brain."

"I just wish you'd use yours more often."

"Yeah, well," Dean shrugged, brushing the thought aside with the barrel of his gun. "I kind of wish that myself sometimes, but I'm not the only one in the family guilty of stupidity."

"You just take it to extremes. And give me that," Sam said, attempting to snatch the gun from his brother's hand. "You won't get your security deposit back if you start blowing holes in the walls."

"Let go of my gun," Dean said, holding tight to the handle.

"Dean," Sam said as if speaking to a three year old.

"Sam," Dean said, a warning in his tone.

"Let go."

"You let go."

"You let go!"

"It's my gun!"

"And you should know better than to be waving it around like that!"

"What are you, my mother? Let go of the damn gun!"

"You let go, or I'll make you let go."

Dean smirked. "Oh yeah? And how're you going to do that?"

Sam's eyes slowly, deliberately grazed a heated path over his body, his expression indicating all the dirty things he was thinking about doing to Dean's body. Swallowing hard, Dean let go of the gun.


Sam just smiled triumphantly and placed the gun on the kitchen counter. "You hungry?" he asked, returning to the stove.

"No," he growled, heading towards the bedroom.

"Yes, you are. Sit down. I've got salad, steak, baked potatoes, fresh green beans, and apple pie with ice cream for dessert."

Dean's traitorous stomach roared with approval and he slowly turned around. "You're fucking with me."

Sam grinned. "Nope."

"You're not fucking with me?"

"Sit down and have some salad. Steak and potatoes should be done in just a couple minutes."

Dean stared at his brother--at his brother who apparently knew how to cook--and decided there was no point in wasting perfectly good food. "Ye-yeah, sure. I just need to change first," he said, eyes filled with disbelief as he untied the black belt around his jacket.

Again, Sam's jaw dropped as the white cloth of the jacket parted to reveal his brother's tanned skin and muscles so well defined dictionaries were begging for the pleasure of having his picture between their pages.

So he'd been working out lately--that was no reason to stare. Or drool.

"Stop looking at me like that," Dean said in a slightly graveled voice. "You can't look at me like that."

Sam's tongue wet his dry lips and he took a step forward. Swallowing hard, Dean took a step back.


Another step forward, another step back, right into the wall. Sam reached out and ran his fingers down the exposed skin, over chest and stomach and navel, leaving goosebumps and a quickened heartbeat in his path.

"Sammy, no."

"Be quiet, Dean," Sam said and dropped to his knees.

Dean stared down at the top of his brother's head and knew he should stop this. His hands clenched and unclenched at his sides as Sam untied the knot around his pants and pulled the white cloth down to his feet. The black tent of his boxers betrayed his body's excitement though his mind was a whirlwind of indecision and fear. His upstairs brain screamed "No!" while his downstairs brain wept with joy as he was freed from all restrictions.

Questing fingers touched the shaft of his penis and tears pricked the backs of his eyes. The expression on Sam's face was one of such wonder and intense concentration, Dean slammed his head back against the wall, he was in such a hurry to look away. It was impossible for him to say no to Sam, not now, not ever, not when there was something he really wanted and it was within Dean's power to give it to him, and this was something his brother clearly wanted. If he was to have a snowball's chance of stopping him, he'd had to look away, but he didn't stop him fast enough.

When he first realized the soft pressure on the tip of his cock was Sam's lips, he nearly came.

"Sammy," he gasped, certain there was something more he wanted to add, but he couldn't find the words. Sam slowly welcomed Dean into his mouth, wet and hot and feeling far too good than anyone, especially his brother, had any right to feel. It was too much, it wasn't enough, and his body didn't know how to react except to explode. Sam had only managed to fit half of him inside when a pained moan was the only warning Dean could give him. Sam's eyes widened with surprise as Dean shuddered and came, but he swallowed the creamy liquid that filled his mouth.

When Dean finally regained his senses, he didn't know whether to feel angry or embarrassed or ashamed, or to just give in to the first hint of peace he'd felt in almost a year. He hadn't been ready for this--certainly not now, possibly not ever. Should he consider this to be a truce offering? Or was it just Sam being selfish again and taking what he wanted without regard to how he might feel about it? He didn't know.

Dean pulled up his pants and went into the bedroom, closing the door behind him. He quickly changed clothes, took a deep breath, and returned to the other half of the apartment. Sam was back in the kitchen, his lips swollen, his face flushed, his eyes slightly moist--though whether from tears or from something else, Dean didn't pause to speculate. He accepted the plate and the beer Sam handed to him and sat down cross-legged on the sofa. A few seconds later, Sam joined him.

They ate in silence, dull eyes focused only on the television which had abandoned the news and was now playing an episode of "The Simpsons". They enjoyed their meal pretending the other wasn't there, as if an invisible wall had been built between them. Dean's cock still pulsed against the pressure of his jeans and threatened to harden again the second he allowed himself to think about Sam's mouth wrapped around him. Instead, he just focused all his attention on food and the television.

On the show, Otto the bus driver asked Lisa to spell AC/DC. She answered, "A. C. D. C." to which Otto responded, "Nuh-uh! You forgot the lightning bolt!"

Dean burst out laughing and even Sam chuckled a little, easing some of the tension in the room. Sam looked at his brother as if to say, "See? This can work," but Dean ignored him and kept watching the show.

When the episode was over, Sam took their empty plates over to the kitchen and returned with two bowls of the apple pie he'd picked up at a bakery topped with ice cream. He handed Dean one bowl, then walked over to the television and turned it off before sitting back down on the sofa.

"What'd you do that for? 'King of the Hill' is on next."

"The fact that you even know that is scary. When was the last time you were in a town long enough to learn the TV schedule?"

Dean shrugged, digging into his pie.

"You don't belong here."

"You think I don't know that?" he growled.

"You belong with me."

"No, you belong with me because you need a warrior. I don't have to belong anywhere or with anyone."

"Dean, please, I know you're angry with me, and you have every right to be, just like I have every right to be angry with you, but we need to find a way to work through this. I told you I forgave you for what you did, and I guess now I need to ask you to forgive me."

"You guess?" he snapped, green eyes flashing furiously. "You think you don't need forgiveness?"

"I still don't know that what I did was necessarily wrong."

Dean's hands were shaking so hard they rattled the spoon against the bowl and he set it on the floor. "Nietzsche once wrote that anything done out of love is beyond good and evil. What I did, I did out of love. It may have been misguided. It may have been fucked up. It was definitely wrong, but I did it out of love. What you did, you did to hurt me. That's all. There were no noble intentions involved, no thoughts of self-sacrifice. You hated me, and you were acting on that hate. There is nothing you can say to excuse what you did."

"Okay, looking beyond the fact that you're now quoting Nietzsche, you fucked a demon, Dean. How is that noble? How is that an act of self-sacrifice?"

Dean stared at his hands for a moment, then nodded. "You're right," he said softly. "What I did, it was for me, because I was afraid of getting too close to you. I was afraid that if I let myself be with you, I wouldn't be able to protect you. I still think that's true. I'm afraid that my feelings for you will cloud my judgment and I'll make some mistake that might end up getting someone killed, including one of us.

"But, I think we've proven that denying my feelings for you hasn't exactly done wonders for my judgment either, so I don't know what to do anymore, Sam. I hate that you left me here. I hate that you seem to care more about having me as your warrior than you do about having me as your brother."

"Dean, that's not true," Sam quickly interjected. "I don't care that you're a warrior. You could be a regular guy who happens to hunt demons and I would still want to be with you. The fact that you're a warrior just seems to me to be fate's or the world's or the universe's or whatever's way of telling us that we do belong together. Your being a warrior just confirms that the love I feel for you is not an infatuation or some sort of twisted response to all the shit that's been happening in our lives. It's real. I love you, Dean, and I am deeply sorry that my bad decisions have ever made you doubt that."

He sat quietly, absorbing his brother's words, then nodded. "I'm going to bed," he said as he stood up, carrying his bowl over to the sink. "You're welcome to stay on the couch."

He heard Sam draw in his breath as if to say something, but thankfully, his brother thought otherwise and he was able to escape to the bedroom without another word.

Sam was standing at the top of the stairs at the end of a hall.

He didn't know how he'd gotten there, but he knew he'd been there before, several times before. He recognized the place easily now. He was home, the home his family had known before the fire, before his mother's death.

He knew that if he walked down the hallway, he would pass his parents' and Dean's bedrooms on the right, and his room on the left.

Tilting his head, he heard the quiet rumble of voices from the television downstairs and could see a blue light seeping into the front hall from the living room. He knew that if he went down the stairs, he would find his father asleep in front of the TV, a father he never knew. The father in his dream was one who still remembered how to laugh, one who looked on the world as a place that would nurture and care for his family, a father who would welcome his sons.

The father he knew now only saw how the world had betrayed him. There was no good left in the world for John, except, possibly, in the lives of his sons, whom he continually had to push away thinking that would save them.

The light behind Sam started to flicker.

He stared at it, hints of fear threading through his veins as he scratched at an itch on his right palm, one that quickly spread through his entire arm. The flickering light warned him danger was near and a voice inside his head told him to run, but he knew he wouldn't. He couldn't. He had to stay. He had to see her.

And then she ran past him, a woman in a long white nightgown whose face he'd only seen once outside of a handful of pictures, but it was a face he recognized instantly.


Though he wanted to stop it, Sam knew how the rest of the dream would play out. Little details might change from night to night, but as he watched her disappear into his nursery, he knew his mother was about to die.

"Mom, wait, come back!" he shouted, following her down the hall. This time, he reached his nursery and could see there was someone else already in there, a dark figure standing over his crib.

"Mom, get out of there!"

But she couldn't hear him.

"Get away from my son!" she shouted and moved to grab the baby from the crib, but stopped as if frozen in place, her arms outstretched and reaching for her child.

The dark figure turned his head to look at her, tears streaming from his eyes, eyes Sam knew intimately. "I'm sorry," the figure whispered, then looked up towards the ceiling. "I choose her. Take her."

"NO!" Sam shouted.

His mother screamed and the room burst into flames.

"Sam! Sammy, wake up! It's me, I've got you, you're safe. Come on, wake up!"

Gasping for air, Sam sat up on the sofa. The flames still lingered in his eyes and the heat crackled across his skin. His head felt like it was about to split open and he reached blindly for his brother. "DEAN!"

"I'm here," Dean said, sitting behind him and wrapping his arms around him. "I'm right here."

A little of the fear eased from his body and he relaxed against his brother. "Dean..."

"Shh," he whispered, holding Sam tight and smoothing the hair from his face, "it's all right now. It was just a dream."

They both knew his words were lies, but they were necessary ones. Sam needed to feel comforted, and Dean needed for them both to feel safe. After a few minutes, Sam took a deep breath and let it out, releasing the last of the fire.

"You okay?" his brother asked.

Finding it difficult to speak, he nodded.

"Come on," Dean said, rising to his feet and pulling Sam up after him. "Let's go back to bed."

"Bed?" he croaked, confused. Dean could actually stand to be close enough to him to share a bed?

"Don't get any ideas," Dean said gruffly. "It's just that I nearly killed myself tripping over your big-ass shoes trying to get out here. If you're going to have another yelling fit in the middle of the night, I'd like to be able to tell you to shut it without giving myself a concussion."

Recognizing Dean's words for what they were, Sam smiled weakly and followed him into the bedroom. Dean let him crawl in first, knowing he felt more secure when he had the wall at his back, and then lay down next to him.

After a few minutes, he broke the silence. "Dean?"

His brother sighed. "Yeah?"

"Thank you."

"Whatever," was Dean's grumpy response, but Sam could hear the underlying warmth in his tone. Smiling, he curled up next to his brother, careful to keep just enough space between them so they weren't actually touching, and slept dreamlessly for the rest of the night.


Next story in series - Security Deposit.