The sketches helped, Sam had told him. Howie had made a study area in the middle of the room, they had moved the two single beds to the corner and one of them had probably pulled a foldable table right out of their ass because he had no idea how such a furniture had came to their possession (and Nick immediately strikes out AJ because the guy had no ass to pull anything out of) and placed it next to the study table that came with the room and everyone had sat around them while Sam tried his very best to explain this whole supernatural concept.
Yes, he did feel, for a second there, as if he was on the set of X-Files. In fact, he had to fight the temptation to start pinning up the articles Howie had printed out of his savvy lap top on the walls around the room (and yes, he didn’t even want to know where they got a friggin portable printer because Nick was still at the ‘wow I can’t believe Howie is attached to the laptop and not his cellphone and oh, he’s doing research about phenomenal activities’ phase).
They had learnt all there was to know about how possession works and how they can recognize one in a crowd. Sam also explained, in intricate details, how they could perform an exorcism (AJ volunteered to learn Latin and Nick pointed out he was only doing it because it might attract the girls to which AJ said 'did not' and Nick said if AJ had an ass, he'd call that a lame ass excuse). He also explained about the existence of hunters, like them.
He had to admit, it didn’t feel any better as Sam went on, in fact, it only got him coming up with more questions than he thought possible.
Dean had come mid way into the little discussion and he could sense his intense energy immediately. It was weird at first, to be able to pick up on such things like that, but it also made him more aware of the people around him. He wasn’t sure if this was just another ability he didn’t know he had, or that the visions somehow opened this…window…somewhere in him, and made itself known.
Dean threw a smile around the room, watched his brother as he pulled a chair and sat next to Brian, across from Sam. He didn’t say a lot and when he did, he was right to the point. Sam didn’t seem bothered by the pair of eyes trained on him but Nick had caught him several times throwing casual glances Dean’s way, they were communicating, he knew, and whatever it was that needed to be conveyed, didn’t need any words at all.
And then Sam had launched into the topic he had been waiting to hear. About children like him, the ones who were visited by demons when they were six months old and had their mothers burnt on the ceiling of their nursery. How he had met some who still had their mothers but still possessed some kind of ability like they did.
Then Sam explained how his sketches helped him to see the bigger picture, fill in the missing pieces. It helped to close the chapter behind and move on, he said. Nick was only too happy that his sketches meant something; that even if it was too late for those people he had seen in his visions, that it was helping someone else, and hopefully Sam learnt something from it, hopefully helped him out in future hunts.
Nick, on the other hand, told them about the dreams, about the yellow eyed man telling him that it was okay and that he shouldn’t be scared, that he was part of a bigger plan and when the time’s ready, he would come for him and he’d understand.
This was the part where Sam looked alarmed. Where Brian looked horrified. Where Howie had frown and AJ had almost fell off his chair. Because he hadn’t really told anyone that before – the whole I’ll come for you soon son, and then you’ll understand.
“Look,” Dean broke the tensed silence, his eyes now boring into him, the first time he had seen Dean looked this serious, this determined. “I don’t believe in this destiny crap. This is your life, your choice. No one can make you mad or make you go kill things if you don’t want to. It’s all up to you. Unless you get yourself possessed by a fucking demon, it’s all you man.”
“Dean,” Sam interrupted, sounding so small and finally like the little brother he was supposed to be, because it was hard to remember sometimes that Sam was the younger one, especially when Dean had been quiet and kept himself in the shadow, allowing Sam to take control of the situation.
“No Sam, you listen!” Dean stressed, and his eyes glanced back to his brother for a second and then came to rest on him again. “When that thing comes for you one of these days, you’ll be ready, and when he give you that shit eating grin and said come with me son, you can tell him to go fuck himself off because you’re not going anywhere, you understand me?”
Nick wasn’t sure if he was supposed to give some kind of affirmative, because he knew this wasn’t just directed at him, he knew that this was a message for his brother too, something Nick bet he had told him many times before.
When no one said anything, it was Brian who cleared his throat. “Dean, you don’t have to worry, we won’t let Nick go with whatever that thing is, we’ll do anything we can to stop that from happening. I trust you’ll do the same for your brother.”
Nick decided Brian was getting hot waffles with vanilla ice cream topped with generous serving of hot fudge for lunch.
Dean seemed to relax a little and his eyes shifted to his brother. “I’m just one person, but it’s better than none.”
Brian grinned and patted Dean on his shoulder. He wondered if Brian would be doing that if he knew the guy had rested a sawed off shotgun on that very shoulder just the day before. “Well, you just don’t know what a man is willing to do for someone he loves.”
There was pain, Nick felt it strongly coming off from both brothers and he had to admit, it was kind of confusing. Dean paused a second too long, as if stuck in a dark memory, before he nodded and returned Brian’s friendly gesture with a smile.
“Oh, I think I do.” And no one dared asked him what he meant by that.
At lunch, he bought waffles with vanilla ice cream and hot fudge for everyone. Dean said normally, when they met a kid like Sam and told them about the whole Supernatural stuff, they’d call them crazy and shooed them away.
The atmosphere was filled with lightly banters for a while and things got even better when AJ out of nowhere asked everyone if they had seen the 67 Chevy parked outside the motel and started rambling on about how he wanted one and Howie pointed out how AJ might like vintage cars, but he definitely doesn’t know how to ride one and was about to remind him about the car he got stuck driving while shooting for the video Incomplete when Nick had cut in (because really, this wasn’t the time to randomly throw in a ‘and oh by the way, we’re the Backstreet Boys’) and told them the Chevy belonged to the Winchesters. This created an even animated conversation between AJ and Dean, much to everyone’s amusement. Sam warned Dean his ‘I don’t mingle’ status might be compromised if he kept it up.
After lunch, everyone returned to their separate rooms, Sam and Dean excusing themselves with promises that they’d stay another day before leaving for their next hunt. He’d ask what the next hunt was about but he didn’t think it was wise to push his luck. Beside, Sam wasn’t looking too good ever since his latest vision, which was worrying because from what he was told, Sam would normally recover soon after.
He went back to his sketches because he wasn’t sure what to do now that he was alone with Brian again. He wasn’t sure how any of the guys were really doing with all these information being thrown on their laps.
It didn’t take long for Brian to finally made his way to his bed (which really didn’t take that much of moving around seeing how both beds were pushed to a corner and Brian really needed two steps to achieve that feat) and plopped himself down in front of him.
“I’m not even going to try and understand the logic of what just happened,” Brian said and he wasn’t sure what to do with that statement and just watched Brian from the top of his sketch book. “I just know it exist and you’re somehow a part of it.”
He noticed a few things about Brian that he hadn’t seen before. Brian was becoming his age. He noticed now the lines on his forehead, the crow feet at the end of his eyes, the barely there bags under his eyes, how now that he was looking straight into them, he could see the years of experience stored in there. It was a little strange to see this side of Brian, he had always regarded him as the same young, crazy, funny guy he knew when he was 12. Even when Brian had acted like an asshole before, when he had hit a period where he came off as holier than thou to almost everyone, even then Nick still regarded him as that grinning, friendly guy who would stay up late and battle him on the playstation because he couldn’t sleep.
They had all grown up, hadn’t they? There were more than just being the Backstreet Boys now. No longer sheltered in a nice, safe cocoon where the things they worry about were backstabbers and where they were heading to the next day. There are wars going around in this world, mother earth is pretty much angry with everyone and everyone felt her presence with the natural disasters she decided to retaliate with. And now the whole ‘evil versus good’ had taken a level up.
“It must be really hard to be doing what they’re doing.”
He nodded and continued with his sketch.
“You’re not going to start hunting things now are you?”
“Only if I have a death wish.”
Brian smiled and he felt compelled to return the gesture. “Good, good…because the only way I’m going to let that happen is if I follow you along and that might create a bit of a problem seeing how I have to tell my wife I’m going to be slaying ghosts, although I think my cool meter will hit the roof with my son.”
He stopped sketching because he really felt he should look as serious as he wanted to be when he told Brian this (plus he had been drawing dark circles for the last ten minutes and had no idea why he was doing it and frankly, it was creeping him out), “Thanks Bri, for even thinking about it, but no, you don’t have to worry about me changing careers anytime soon. I think I have a lot on my plate as it is already.”
Brian shrugged and then grinned. “Just covering my bases here you know?”
“I know,” he nodded short. “Hey, you think Howie’s already busy updating Kevin about what’s going on?”
Brian laughed because Brian probably had expected that he would find out about them updating Kevin because it's just so them to do that. “Yeah, I think he’s doing that right now.”
“You think Kev’s gonna freaked out?”
“Nah, you know Kev, when had anything ever freaked him out?”
This, was true (although he decided not to mention that one incident when he had stuck kevin’s finger inside a bottle and Howie said they might have to cut it off, Kevin had freaked out like a girl over that one).
“So, tell me about this yellow eyed Demon, you showed me a sketch of that before right?” I want to know everything that’s going on with you Nicky so please don’t shut me out.
It was a relief. It was as if all the burdens in this world had been lifted off of him for a while. Brian seemed to take it well (and by well, he meant going ‘Oh good Lord Jesus’ every time he saw a disturbing image, which was each and everyone he had sketched so far) now that he was seeing those sketches and really paid attention to them, while listening to him explained every vision he had so far.
It was when he was in the middle of telling Brian about his vision of the Winchester brothers being held against their will by the demon that had killed their mother that someone had knocked on their door.
“I’ll get that,” Brian offered.
He went back to his sketch pad and realised he had been sketching a pair of black eyes. He wondered if it should be of any significance.
It was Dean at the door, sans Sam. He had to admit it was kind of surprising to see him alone. For all his effort to stick around, he always had the feeling that elder brother wasn’t really a people’s person. But the same could be said about Kevin (the bushy eyebrow tends to yell ‘piss off!’ at everyone within arms length) but he ended up being one of the nicest guys he had ever had the opportunity to know.
“Hey Brian, sorry to trouble you again man.”
“No, no, not a problem at all. What’s up?”
“Uh, I’m leaving for a bit, just following up to the next hunt and all…I normally don’t do this and Sam’s a big boy but he’s not feeling too good and I’m wondering if, you could…you know, if…”
“I’ll keep an eye on the big guy, don’t worry.”
“Yeah, I appreciate that…room’s salted and all and he knows to call me if anything happens it’s just…nice…to know he’s not really alone.”
“I totally understand that, don’t worry, we’ll keep our guards up.”
He wasn’t even sure how he had ended up by the door next to Brian, he wasn’t even sure when he had gotten out of bed in the first place, but he was there, and he knew why, just wasn’t sure about the how.
“Hey, this is just a research right?”
Dean nodded, “Yeah.”
“I’m guessing you’re going to the library.”
“You’ve been hanging out with Sam too much Nick,” Dean pointed out. “And I don’t do libraries but Sam’s out of commission.”
“So it won’t be anything dangerous.”
Brian smacked him on the shoulder and that surprised Nick a little. “What?”
“What are you getting at Nicky? I’m not liking where this conversation is going.”
He grinned because he liked how worried Brian looked right then. Well, not that he liked seeing Brian worried because of him but he felt good that his friend was even worried about him at all.
“I'll come with.”
“What?” Said Dean.
“What!” Said Brian.
What was it about short, big brothers that really get on the nerves of taller, little brothers?
“I can help, it’ll make your job easier and faster, might even come back before Sam’s awake.” Besides, Brian here is itching to hang out with the other guys and find out what Kevin had to say about all these.
“I don’t know about that man.”
“Okay fine, I just need someone to drive me to the 7/11 for a bag of M&Ms, I’d go myself but I might kill someone if I get a vision in the middle of driving.”
Brian sighed because Brian had known him for more than ten years and this was a classic display of Nick getting his way regardless of what everyone else said.
Dean looked thoughtful and he thanked his goodself for paying attention to the tiny details when they had gone for lunch together earlier on and used it to his advantage (Dean had asked for M&M’s to be sprinkled on top of his vanilla ice cream).
Raising an eyebrow, tilting his head to the left and probably rounding him up for a final decision, he said, “M&M huh?”