Who's afraid of the dark?

Mar 28, 2015 21:21

Title: Who's afraid of the dark?
Pairing: Dean/Sam
Rating: NC-17
Summary: It should have been just another birthday, but it wasn't. When Sam disappears mysteriously, John, Dean and Bobby team up to start a desperate search for him. Meanwhile, Sam wakes up in a strange, cold room, where no one talks to him, although he knows he's being watched. He's just a boy, and when things go terribly wrong, can Dean help him survive the darkness that creeps through his skin and nestles in his bones? This is a story of great darkness and pain, but also of great love and comfort.
Warnings and A/N: Top!Dean, bottom!Sam, not for the faint of heart, graphic violence/torture and maybe more. Read at your own risk. Wee!cest, pre-series. Hurt/Comfort, protective Dean.

Previous chapters

Chapter 19

In the hospital where Sam was, the lights were always kept on, even during the night, so there was no darkness in the patient rooms. Yet, as Sam woke up a few hours later when the sedative started to wear off, he didn’t know where he was. He saw the white room around himself, the bed with white sheets, and couldn’t stop his thoughts - ‘I’m back in the room. He found me and took me back’.

Sam grew restless at first, and that escalated quickly to a state of panic and frantic moving. He tore the feeding tube off himself, choking and coughing until it was out, and his heart rate beeped so fast that it immediately caused nurses to enter his room.

When they saw the boy writhing on the bed, the two nurses tried to restrain him. But for all his malnourished, weak body, Sam was terribly strong to be kept still.

“You’re gonna hurt yourself, please stop!” One of them said, but to no avail.

Sam’s breath was short and his thoughts were a blurry mess. He tore the I.V. drip off his vein and caused blood to gush out of it.

The more the nurses tried to contain him, the more Sam thrashed and fought them, determined to escape that room or die trying.

“Doctor? Doctor, please! Do something!” One of the nurses said when she saw doctor Michael, the boy’s doctor, stick his head inside the room.

Doctor Michael immediately approached the bed and assessed what was going on rapidly.

“Sam?” He called. “Sam, it’s okay… you’re in the hospital now,” he tried.

The boy didn’t seem to hear him at all. Sam was squirming against the hands keeping him in bed and had begun to sweat profusely in his attempt to escape. He was bleeding from his torn venous access and if he kept it up he might cause his weak, battered body, some severe, permanent injuries. Doctor Michael needed to act.

The doctor took a syringe and a sedative, and in a few more seconds he was forced to pierce Sam’s arm in order to inject the intramuscular medication.

The nurses helped him hold Sam down as he gave him the drug.

“Girls, you can go now. Thank you,” the doctor told them.

“Are you sure doctor?”

“Yes,” he nodded.

The two nurses left and doctor Michael stayed behind, resting a hand against Sam’s forehead as the medication started its calming effect.

Sam was shaking badly, and his breathing was still erratic. His outburst had looked a lot like a panic attack. John Winchester didn’t know what had happened to his son in the last three months, and the only words Sam had been able to speak when he arrived were about being tortured.

Doctor Michael could treat all his injuries until he was perfectly healthy - physically at least. But as a doctor, he didn’t think that would be enough. In fact, he had a feeling that healing Sam’s external injuries would be the easy part of healing him. God knows what he had been exposed to in the time he was missing.

“Sam? It’s alright, boy… you can relax… Your family has found you, remember? You were brought here yesterday. My name’s Michael, and I’ll be taking care of you for the next few days,” he explained softly, and he felt the boy relax slowly on the bed. Normally, doctor Michael wouldn’t get too attached to his patients, but he loved kids, and there was something so broken about that boy that just tug at his heart and made him want to help him so bad.

Sam began to feel sleepy and his limbs felt soft. ‘I’m not in the room’, he thought, and allowed himself to be maneuvered back into a comfortable position on top of two fat pillows.

The doctor finished adjusting him and studied the damage the boy had done during his episode. The feeding tube had been ripped off. The doctor sighed and stared at it. He decided not to put another. They had feed him for the night, and he decided he would try and make Sam eat something in the morning. If he collaborated, then there was no need for that.

The I.V. drip though, that was important. The doctor cleaned the blood that had stained part of the sheets and took Sam’s vein again in order to put him back on the drip. He was still dehydrated, and there was medication in that drip.

The doctor thought of how badly the boy was hurt on the outside, and how much more he probably was on the inside.

“I'm gonna keep you sedated for a while, Sam. It’s good for the pain, and it will help you sleep,” he said softly, even though the boy’s eyes had already fallen shut.

~ * ~

In the middle of the night, Sam woke up. He had no idea what time it was, but the lights in the hospital were dim. Sam felt slightly drugged, but he blinked a few times and tried to sit up.

“Good, you’re awake,” doctor Michael said softly, pulling a chair to sit closer to the bed in order to talk to him. There was a medical stand beside the headboard of Sam’s bed with a few bottles of medication, and now there was also a white cardboard box with something written on it, something the doctor stared intently at.

After Sam’s panic attack, the doctor couldn’t help but wonder about what had happened to him, and the truth was, no one knew. No one but Sam knew exactly what had happened for the past three months, and a lot could have happened.

“We need to talk about something now that we’ve stabilized you,” he began, and removed the oxygen mask Sam had been breathing into. “But first I would like to tell you about doctor-patient confidentiality. Have you heard about it? Seen it in a movie, perhaps?”

Sam nodded slowly. His eyelids seemed heavy.

“So you know that anything you tell me that you don’t wish to share with anyone else will be a secret, right? This means that you can tell me something you don’t want to tell your family, and I will not tell them either.”

Sam frowned. He didn’t like where that was going - his quickened heartbeats attested to that.

“Sam…” The doctor stared intently at the boy, and he tried to be as gentle as possible. “During the time you were away, you were badly hurt, right?”

Sam nodded again. He felt absolutely no desire to speak.

The doctor sighed. Sam was fourteen years old. He was a minor, but not a child, so he decided to be straightforward.

“Did you suffer any kind of sexual abuse?”

Sam tensed on the spot. His blood seemed to drop a few degrees and his breathing became loud, despite his resonating silence.

“Because if you did, then you need help to deal with it. You know that, right? You’re a smart kid. And we need help so we can help you. You see this here?” The doctor pointed at the cardboard box. “This is a sexual assault evidence collection kit. It’s a big name, but it’s actually very simple. All we need to do is exam you to collect some samples, and then maybe we’ll be able to track down who ever hurt you.”

Sam’s stomach hurt. He was so tense that even his throat seemed to close up, and breathing was difficult. He felt himself sweating, even though he felt cold, and his body started to shake visibly.

“If you’re uncomfortable with me doing the exam, there’s my friend, doctor Camille. She’s very nice, you’ll really like her,” he smiled.

‘No,’ Sam thought. ‘I’m not going back there,’ he thought feverishly, shutting his eyes and panting.

His reaction told the doctor more than the rape kit could, and he tried to hide the sadness he felt.

“Hmm? What do you say, Sam? It’ll only take a few minutes, and it won’t hurt.”

Sam opened his eyes and looked intently at the doctor. There was something fierce in Sam’s eyes, something strong and mildly frightening. The doctor had already seen denial, but hardly combined with so much anger.

Sam pushed the cardboard box off the stand swiftly. It fell on the floor with a thud, and there wasn’t a drop of regret in the boy’s eyes. He looked at the doctor defiantly.

“Sam…” Doctor Michael stared at the box on the floor. “I can’t make you do it, but I strongly recommend that you…”

“Hmm,” Sam groaned and tried to move. He tugged at the probe on his finger and the I.V. drip, and would have gotten out of the bed if it weren’t for the doctor getting up and stopping him quickly.

“Hey, hey.... Don’t try to move, you’re too weak, Sam, you’ll end up falling. I won’t say anything else, alright? You can stay there. It’s okay.” It took a moment to convince Sam to lie back down, but eventually he complied.

Doctor Michael sighed sadly, picked up the rape kit and looked at the boy who turned on his side and gave his back to him.

He decided he would speak to his father when he came back in the morning.

~ * ~

When it was time for breakfast, the doctor dismissed the nurses after they failed to feed Sam, and sat on the boy’s bed to try and get him to eat his food.

“Good morning, Sam. How are you feeling? A little better?” He smiled, picking up the bowl and the spoon. He tried to act as if nothing had happened during the night. He wanted to try and put the boy at ease so he would eat.

Sam stared at him through silent, aloof eyes. He seemed to be studying the doctor and evaluating whether or not he was a threat.

“Your father and brother will come visit you soon. In fact, they wanted to be here now, but I told them they should get some rest as you did too. I’ll tell them they can stay here with you, but first you need to eat something,” he explained.

Sam merely studied him, showing no reaction at all. Partly because of the drug in his system. His thoughts were slow and clouded, and Sam felt it was difficult to focus on a single thought or on a single movement. He looked at the doctor and listened to his words, but he still didn’t feel like speaking.

He understood he was now in a real hospital, with a real doctor, and no longer in the bright room where he had been held captive. He had a vague memory, which could very well be a dream, of Dean leaning over him and telling him he was safe.

Sam wanted to feel joy, but his heart was still unable to go to the trouble of such an emotion. He did feel relieved, though. Just knowing that there would be no more darkness, no more pain and humiliation in the dark, was enough for now.

‘I was never there,’ Sam thought, with so much strength that it took him by surprise. ‘Nothing happened,’ he thought silently, approvingly.

“C’mon, Sam. I need you to eat something so you can leave this room and go somewhere more comfortable, where a family member will keep you company,” the doctor offered him a spoon of the food.

Sam’s right wrist was broken and there was a cast around it, and his left arm was receiving the drip. It would be better if he didn’t try to move much. Even because he was under medication for pain that caused his muscles to relax, and holding a spoon towards his own mouth might not be as easy a task as it was for everyone else at the moment.

Sam saw the spoon before his mouth but didn’t move. He didn’t feel hungry. He didn’t feel anything, in fact. He still felt pain, though. But it was like a fading echo of the intense pain he had been used too. Sam didn’t know for sure, but he imagined they were giving him something strong for it.

“C’mon, Sam… if you don’t eat something I’ll be forced to put that tube through your nose and down your esophagus again. You don’t want that, do you? Just a little bit, fella…” The doctor pushed the spoon against Sam’s lips but the boy turned his face.

Sam didn’t want to speak, or eat, or listen to the doctor anymore. He wanted to sleep and forget, and nothing more.

The doctor sighed and gave up after a while, promising himself to try again later.

~ * ~

When John, Dean and Bobby arrived for visitation, doctor Michael met them to give them news on how Sam was doing.

“So, how did he spend the night, Mike?” John asked.

“He’s doing fine,” the doctor started. “He’s stable and I believe this afternoon we’ll transfer him to a regular room, then you can be with him. There’s only a problem…”

“What?” John asked, quickly.

“I can’t get him to eat,” the doctor confessed. “He woke up in the middle of the night, I guess he was confused as to where he was, and he ended up removing the feeding tube. I haven’t put it back, because I’m trying to get him to eat on his own, but it’s been difficult. Besides, I’m keeping him on a heavy sedative both for the pain and to keep him calm.”

“We’ll try and get him to eat,” John promised.

“Good. You can go in.”

“I’ll just wait here, guys,” Bobby said.

“Erm…” Doctor Michael pondered for a minute. “You have fifteen minutes to be with him, then I’ll ask you to leave so the nurses can do their job… you can go in too,” he said, nodding towards Bobby.

The hunter widened his eyes. “Me? I can go too?”

“Yes. It’s okay. Go,” the doctor said.

Bobby was more than happy to obey. So the three of them walked into Sam’s room for a short, yet much needed visit.

“Dear Lord…” Bobby whispered faintly at the sight of him.

The black eye was very shocking. It made Sam’s beautiful boyish face look weird and pained. His right eye was closed tight and swollen, but his left one opened when he heard them coming.

“Sam…?” John called softly.

Dean looked at his brother and realized Sam was looking back at him. His heart beat faster in his chest.

“Hey Sam…” Bobby smiled, approaching the bed.

Sam looked at the three men there to see him. They were his family, the three of them, and he loved them. For the past three months Sam would have given anything to see them, to talk to them, to touch them… and yet, now that they were there, Sam felt strangely quiet and aloof. Looking into their eyes was like looking into a mirror - Sam could see his injuries, his brokenness reflected in them, and he didn’t like it.

The worry in their faces reminded Sam of what he had been through in the bright room, and right now Sam was using the little strength he had to try and erase everything he had seen and felt there.

The look in Bobby’s and his father’s eyes took him straight back to the white room, feeling helpless, feeling like a victim. Dean’s eyes were also worried, but there was something else in them, there was a kind of strength that made it easier to look at him. Or perhaps Sam was just not afraid to see himself in the mirror of Dean’s eyes. Dean had been there for him since he was a baby, in ways his own father hadn’t, and even though they had grown into the tough, and sometimes teasing, dynamic of their relationship, Sam supposed no one else had seen him as vulnerable and scared as Dean had while he was growing up.

“Did you sleep well?” John was asking.

Sam didn’t reply. He didn’t feel like talking. He didn’t trust his voice, and he didn’t trust himself to be strong enough to engage into conversation.

He just wanted to be quiet and build the strong wall he wanted to put between himself and his past in the bright room, in the darkness. After the doctor’s questions from before Sam realized how important it was to protect himself from those memories.

Dean sensed there was something broken in Sam, and it wasn’t only bones or skin. There was something so absolutely aloof about his brother that Dean avoided looking him in the eyes. It felt like Sam was silently screaming to be left alone, and Dean didn’t feel comfortable pushing him with questions.

A while later, after realizing his questions would go unanswered, John tried to sit by the bed and spoon feed his son. He had the same result as doctor Michael did that morning. He tried, but Sam neither spoke, nor opened his mouth.

His son just stared, at him or at nothing in particular, and waited, silently, for something they couldn’t understand.

“Guys… time’s up,” the doctor showed up by the door and announced. “The nurses need to come in and change the sheets.”

Those fifteen minutes had gone by really fast, and they couldn’t wait until they were able to stay with him all the time.

Bobby and John sighed and turned around to leave.

Dean approached the doctor and spoke to him. “Can I…stay a bit longer, try and make him eat?”

The doctor looked at John and at the food, untouched, on top of Sam’s tray. He didn’t think the brother would have any more success than the father had, but if he thought he could do it, the doctor was happy to let him try.

“Yeah, no problem. I’ll ask the nurses to wait a little.”

Bobby and John looked at Dean a last time and said they would be waiting outside. The doctor left with them, leaving Dean alone in the room with Sam.

~ * ~

“John? I need to speak to you in private for a moment,” the doctor said.

“Sure,” John looked at Bobby and then at doctor Michael, then he followed the latter into an empty office.

“Please, close the door,” doctor Michael said, and sat behind his desk. “Take a seat,” he instructed.

John looked wary when he complied. “What is it, Mike?”

“John…this night when Sam woke up I tried talking to him. He wouldn’t speak to me, but I wanted to know what was done to him in the place where he was. Now, it’s important that you understand that macroscopically speaking, there was no evidence of your son suffering sexual abuse, but that doesn’t mean we can rule it out.”

John frowned and shook his head lightly.

“Pardon me? Are you saying that my son was abused?”

“No, I didn’t say that. I’m saying that since we don’t know what happened to him, we should probably do some exams to confirm. There could be tearing inside that was not visible when the nurses gave him a bath, and if a sexual assault happened a few days ago, there wouldn’t be any bleeding.”

“So you haven’t seen anything that actually indicated my son was raped?”

“No…but as I said, this doesn’t mean…”

“Has my son said anything?” John cut him off. “Did Sam say that something happened?”

“No,” the doctor said again. “Sam didn’t say anything. Although he made it clear that he didn’t want to do the exams. That’s why I’m talking to you, because as his father you can ask for a rape kit to be done.”

“And why would I do such a thing to my boy? You saw no evidence when you examined him, and he didn’t say anything happened to him. Why would I force him to do something he obviously doesn’t want to? I won’t put my son through such a humiliating situation if there’s no need to.”

“As I said, we don’t know whether or not-“

“Michael… Please. My son was beaten up badly, I can see that. But he wasn’t raped, so take it easy, okay? Nothing happened, or else you would have seen it, or he would have said something.”

The doctor could suddenly see a lot of his father in the boy he was treating. John’s denial of the mere suspicion of sexual abuse was just as intense as the boy’s.

“Well, it is your call. We will not do the test unless Sam allows it, or unless you ask us to.”

“No, no test, Michael, please. My boy has been through enough as it is. There’s absolutely no need to traumatize him further with these ideas of abuse.”

Michael nodded, albeit it reluctantly.

“Alright, John… As I said, it’s your call.”

~ * ~

When they were all gone, Dean took in a deep breath and sighed. The room felt immediately lighter without so many people worrying over Sam. He took his time looking at the door, until they were really gone, before he turned around and walked towards Sam’s bed.

Sam watched, his heart beating fast, as Dean sat on his bed and picked up the bowl with food. It felt different when Dean did that. His father hadn’t done fatherly stuff to him in ages, since Sam could remember. But not that many years ago Sam could see Dean doing exactly what he did now to him, pushing a spoon of food towards his mouth when he was sick.

“You gotta eat,” Dean spoke softly. “You need your strength back, Sammy.”

Sam looked at the spoon and at Dean. He wanted to pick the damn thing up by himself, but his right wrist was useless, and he felt so weak that he didn’t think he could take the spoon to his mouth without spilling everything.

“Open up,” Dean commanded gently.

Sam stared at him, still silent as a rock, but his eyes spoke volumes. Dean could see he felt ashamed of his helplessness, and he could confirm it in the way Sam’s cheeks blushed, afire, when Dean insisted. The boy turned his head and breathed faster.

“Listen…” Dean started. “It’s not so bad,” he said, taking the spoon to his mouth and trying the food.

The movement startled Sam, and caused him to look back at Dean, and at what he was doing.

“In fact, it’s almost good,” Dean nodded approvingly, taking another mouthful of it.

Sam’s lips twitched in something that resembled, though faintly, a smile, and his cheeks lost some of the heat.

“C’mon, Sammy… it’s just food. Just open up, let it in, swallow it,” Dean’s eyes were warm, and his voice was trusting.

He tried pushing the spoon towards Sam again, and before Sam himself knew what he was doing, his lips were parting and he was doing as Dean said - open up, let it in, swallow it.

“There you go,” Dean said approvingly but without making a big deal out of it. “Now we repeat this movement a hundred times and it’s done.”

Sam’s lips didn’t move, but there was a smile inside him. He tried to let it out, but it was like his body didn’t know how to smile anymore. The thought saddened him, and he took the next spoon of food quietly.

When the doctor opened the door to see if the brother had been successful, he smiled appreciatively and closed the door again, careful not to make a sound, after the sight of big brother feeding younger brother on the bed. He felt glad that there was someone Sam could trust; he would need that.

When Dean finished feeding Sam the last spoon of food, he put it aside and studied his brother.

“How do you feel? Like, for real?” He tried.

Sam looked deeply into his brother’s eyes. He didn’t look away like he might have done had someone else asked him that. He didn’t let his eyes stray as if he hadn’t heard anything. Nonetheless, he could not find it in himself to answer that. It was all so fresh, so vivid… Every time he blinked he had to be careful not to find himself in the bright room again, waiting for the man to come and…

‘No. I was never there,’ he thought firmly, denying his thoughts any access to the memories screaming in the back of his mind.

So no, he could not talk about how he felt.

He could not talk at all, not now, perhaps not ever.

Dean sighed softly and nodded. He respected Sam’s silence. He couldn’t possibly understand where it was coming from, and right now he couldn’t help him either, but Dean knew he had to give him time. There was nothing to be accomplished by insisting on something Sam wasn’t ready to do.

“I’ll see you soon. But if I’m not here, you eat that next bowl of food, okay?” He patted Sam’s knee lightly and left the room.

Sam followed him with his eyes, attentive and silent, and went back to his lonely contemplation of nothing when he was alone again.



Previous post Next post