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09 May 2009 @ 12:58 pm
Fic: Bloody Knuckles  
Title: Bloody Knuckles
Author: chasingtides
Fandom: Supernatural
Pairing/characters: Sam/various, Dean/various
Rating: PG-13
Disclaimer: I don't own the characters of Supernatural and no copyright infringement is intended.
Prompt: 1294. Supernatural, Sam and Dean (or Sam/Dean), The only thing in common between succubi and crossroads demons was the fact that they would appear as something you would be willing to swap spit with Sam and Dean deal with the fact that Sam's crossroads demon and Dean's succubus appeared as men rather than supermodels.
Summary: Sam never figured a bar fight in Nowheresville, Tennessee would lead to learning so much about his brother - or the hunting community.
Warnings: References to underage sex, homophobic violence and language
Author's Notes: Written for lgbtfest. Special thanks to my betas, tahu and katbcoll. I had been wanting to write this ever since the siren episode and this fest gave me the push to actually do it. I hope I've done the prompt justice.

“Fucking idiot,” Dean muttered to himself, shoving his blood stained shirt into the duffel bag and pulling out a new one, one of Sam’s that had shrunk in a dryer back in Louisiana.

Sam frowned and stripped to the waist himself. Normally, he’d wait until they were back at the motel; he didn’t like to bare vulnerable skin out in the open woods, but he knew the familiar tension that was running through Dean like a live wire. They’d killed it, slaughtered it, salted the corpse and burned the bones, but not before it had taken another victim and Spring Heeled Jacks were gruesome killers. Dean wouldn’t want to go back to the motel, not after that. Sam couldn’t blame him. He wasn’t looking forward to sleeping and maybe having a couple whiskeys and losing his mind to a couple hours of pool and bad music would do them both some good.

He listened to Dean murmur the periodic, angry curse as he wove the Impala out of the woods and back into the tired town they were calling home for the night. He wanted to say something - it’s not your fault; I should have saved her, too; at least we gutted the bastard - but he knew he wouldn’t be heard and it had nothing to do with the Led Zeppelin coming out of the speakers.

“Want to get me a beer, Samantha?” Dean asked when they reached the town’s lone bar, his voice harsher than the old, tired joke.

Sam shrugged and watched the tension in Dean’s shoulders as he headed for the back of the bar and the pool tables. The bar was dimly lit and crowded. Probably the only place to be, Sam thought and pushed his way past a crowd of locals to get to the bar.

“Two Coors,” Sam yelled over the low, familiar din of the bar. The bartender was a scruffy looking guy with lank hair and a plaid jacket, but he appeared to have heard Sam.

“Here with your girl?”

Sam turned and smiled tightly at the woman at his elbow. She was pretty in that small town way; tight brown ringlets tumbling down her back and big blue eyes to match. “No, just,“ he jutted his chin toward the pool tables in the back, “Dean.”

“And you’re buying his beer, hun?” she asked, her voice mellow like honey.

“He wanted to play pool.” Sam couldn’t tell her, couldn’t tell this girl who didn’t know about the things that hide in the dark or the demons who would steal for her soul, that his brother needed to play out his pain, that Dean needed to con his way through a game and get his hands on her brother or boyfriend or buddy’s money, just so that he could calm down enough that he wouldn’t spend the night awake, cleaning the guns and sharpening the knives and rereading Dad’s journal.

She just smiled, like she didn’t notice his tone or didn’t mind either way, and took a long sip of her own beer. “Well, you should tell him to keep his eye out for Cole. He plays to win.”

“Sounds just like Dean,” Sam told her as he handed over the cash to the bartender.

“I don’t think he could beat out Cole,” the woman told him. “He’s been reigning champion around Sweetwater for the past couple years.”

Sam grabbed both beers and took a long draught out of one. “It’s been ten years since I’ve seen someone beat Dean and if your Cole could beat Dean, well,” he grinned, tight and drawn at the memory, “I think any number of people would be willing to hand over their money.”

Sam made his way toward the back of the bar, shouldering his way through the crowd, and could feel the her following behind in his wake. In the back of his mind, he wondered if she knew she was following, if she knew he wasn’t interested in picking up a girl tonight, that he would be too afraid of turning his anger outward, of hurting himself or her or Dean or the world.

“You got me my beer,” Dean exclaimed, leaning his pool cue against the table and plucking his bottle from Sam’s hand. He was taut and too sharp for the run-down, small town bar. Dean was practically vibrating with his own angry disquiet; Sam couldn’t tell why the locals were still playing with him. Sam had learned long ago that Dean’s usual way of dealing with his own perceived failures, his own anger at himself, was by finding a fight. Sometimes, the lucky times, he got his fight with whatever they were killing. Other times, when pool or cards or just a beer wasn’t enough, he’d find a fight with the locals.

“That Dean?” the brunette asked from behind Sam’s shoulder.

Dean took a long look at her, handed Sam his beer, and went back to the game. Sam had seen the look in his eyes, the one where he wasn’t seeing the pretty brunette in the bar, but the dead girl in the woods, the one whose body they had burned alongside the monster that had killed her. Sam frowned; at least he wasn’t going to be trying to find an all night movie theater while Dean took someone back to their motel room.

“Yeah, that’s Dean.”

She looked at Dean and then back to Sam again. “Not very sociable, is he?”

Sam shrugged. “It’s been a rough night.”

She smiled at Sam, soft and gentle like he’d forgotten people could look, and pulled up a stool to watch the game. She clearly knew the other players and plenty of other locals at the bar. Sam didn’t talk to her, just leaned against a post and kept Dean’s beer for him, but he learned that her name was Lori and that she was betting against Dean in the game.

Sam finished off the end of his beer as Dean dropped the last ball into its socket, smiling like a shark. “I think you owe me.”

Cole, a dark eyed local in a motocross t-shirt, scowled at him. “You cheated.”

Dean stood up, overshadowing the guy, and stretched his arms. He wasn’t threatening him, not yet, but he wasn’t backing down. “I think if I cheated, someone around here would have noticed.”

“I don’t lose to fags,” Cole growled.

Sam saw when the tension inside Dean snapped and he could feel Dean’s arm swing back. He knew his brother’s right hook almost as well as he knew his own and he would have felt bad for Cole if he hadn’t heard what Cole said. What Sam didn’t expect was for the punches to continue. Dean liked a good fight as much as any hunter, possibly more than most, but he usually knew better than to start a brawl so far from the exits and with so many locals around.

“Dean, stop it!” Sam snapped, grabbing Dean’s arm from behind, the way he had in so many practice sessions, ever since they were kids.

Cole wiped some of the blood from his face. “Yeah, listen to your boyfriend, fag.”

Dean pulled at Sam’s hold on him, trying to get at Cole, but Sam tightened his grip, happy for once that he had height and muscle on his brother, and made sure Dean couldn’t break it.

“Come on,” Sam told him, as he pulled him back toward the door before any of Cole’s friends got any ideas. “We’re leaving now.”

Dean wrenched himself out of Sam’s grasp in the dirt lot outside the bar. He spun around, rolling his shoulders like he was getting ready for another fight. “What the hell was that?”

Sam could feel his jaw muscles tighten and his own shoulders pull back. “Just get in the car before someone decides they need to teach us a lesson.”

“We could show them,” Dean said, his eyes sharp as flint in the moonlight.

“I don’t want to.” Sam slammed his door shut and waited for Dean to get in.

The ride back to their dumpy little motel, the Candelight Motorlodge, was silent and tense. Sam could tell that Dean was still raring for a fight, ready to go, to let loose, to knock somebody bloody. And Sam knew that he was, too. He was angry and tense and ready to just knock some sense into his brother, even if it ended up with one of them losing teeth.

Dean stomped out of the car after pulling the Impala into the space by their room. He pulled his duffel - the one with the coats and the guns and his personal knives and the rock salt and the spare blankets - from the backseat and stalked into their room without a word to Sam. Sam sat in the darkened passenger seat for a long moment, taking a few deep, calming breaths, before he grabbed his bag - the one with the clothes and the blessed bullets and Sam’s own knives and the laptop - and followed Dean inside.

Dean was sitting on his bed, always the one closest to the door, cleaning his Beretta with a single minded determination. It was already in shining silver pieces all over the darkly patterned bedspread and Dean’s hands manipulated them like magical quicksilver. Sam could read the anger in his brother’s shoulders, in the miniscule jerks of his wrists, and in the way Dean was making a point of looking at the gun and not at Sam.

“What did you think you were doing?” Dean’s voice was low and gravelly, the way it had been when he asked Cole for his winnings.

“You think you could take on the whole bar by yourself?” Sam snapped, dropping his duffel on his bed. “You weren’t even anywhere near the door.”

Dean shrugged, rolling his shoulders like he was getting ready to spar. “I can take my punches.”

“Just because some half drunk asshole in a backwater bar called you a fag?” Sam felt his upper lip curl in disgust when he saw Dean’s head snap up sharply at the word.

“I’m a not a fag,” Dean told him, his voice heavy with anger and disgust in equal parts.

“God, Dean,” Sam exclaimed. “Your goddamn siren was a guy! Do you really think I hadn’t figured out by now that you like guys? So, you came back gay or something. I don’t get it, but I don’t care! I’m not going to think less of you for it!”

“I’m not gay and I’m definitely not a fag.” Dean turned back to his gun, like that finished the conversation.

Sam resisted the desire to grab Dean by the shoulders and just shake some sense into him. “I like guys. I fuck guys sometimes. Does that make me less of a man to you?”

“What the hell are you talking about?”

“I like guys,” Sam repeated, his voice sounding just too loud in the suddenly too small motel room. He’d never come out to Dad; they’d had enough to argue about when he was a teenager and then they had barely been reunited when Dad died. With Dean, at first, it hadn’t been an issue, not in high school when Sam was hiding half his life anyway and then not with Jess in the picture. After Jess died, after he’d come back on the road, there just hadn’t been a good time for it. Dean was his big brother, but he was also a man’s man and a hunter: raised by a Marine to love loud guns and fast cars and bloody fights. He’d had some hope after the incident with the siren, after he’d managed to tell Dean about his crossroads demon, but apparently not even that could change the mind of his red-blooded all-American brother.

“Yeah, I know,” Dean growled, reassembling the Beretta. “I still don’t see your point.”

“What do you mean, you know?” Sam tried to think back, tried to think of any time he’d flirted with a guy, picked up a guy, when Dean was around, but couldn’t think of one since high school.

“I kind of figured it out when Dad told me you joined the QSA at Stanford.” Dean reached into his bag and pulled out his black handled Bowie knife and whetstone. “It was a little hard to miss at that point.”

“I - What?” Sam felt confused and deflated, like he’d been dropped in a trackless forest without a map. “Dad knew?”

“Dad knew if you sneezed wrong,” Dean told him, his voice low over the whine of the blade on the whetstone. “Did you think he just stopped caring because you went to California?”

“But he never said anything,” Sam protested. “You never said anything.”

“Did we need to?” Dean kept his eyes on the sharpening blade.

A singular, horrifying thought crossed Sam’s mind. “That’s not why he told me to stay gone, is it?”

“What the hell?” Dean looked up from his handiwork sharply. “Don’t be an asshole, Sam. Dad told you to stay gone because he thought it would keep you from going. By the time you joined your little queer student union, he’d already gone three rounds with me.”

“I thought you said you weren’t a fag,” Sam retorted, regretting the sharpness of his words as soon as he saw Dean’s face harden in reaction.

“I’m not.” Dean voice was stony as he put the Bowie knife back in its sheath. “I never said I don’t fuck men or get fucked. I said I’m not a fag.”

Sam frowned.

“What, you thought it was some kind of high school phase?” Dean asked. “Even Dad only asked that once.”

“High school phase?” Sam repeated. He remembered what Dean had been like in high school, equal parts of James Dean and the Fonz. He’d been the bad boy all the girls wanted, skipping classes, jumping between schools, wearing Dad’s old leather jacket. He had picked up girls when they were on dates with their boyfriends and practiced flirting with waitresses in truck stops. He took shop and got in fights in the parking lot; he’d practically been a parody of himself. “You slept with whole cheerleading squads in high school. I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

Dean looked up and stared at him for a long moment, like he couldn’t believe what Sam had just said. “Oskaloosa, Iowa, 1994? Ringing any bells?”

Sam thought back. He remembered it vaguely, another prairie city in a long line of faceless cities. He’d only been eleven and was dealing with his own shit; he hadn’t bothered to pay much attention to what Dean was doing. Dad had decided that year that he needed to train harder, learn to hunt with the rest of the family. He shook his head. “I was eleven, man.”

“Dad caught me making out with Kevin Marshall. One of the basketball players from school,” Dean clarified, his body still as tight as a bow string, when Sam didn’t recognise the name. “Kevin thought Dad was going to smack him, I think. Dad just sent him home. Ripped me a new one, though, wanted to know what I was thinking, sneaking off in the dark, not telling anyone where I was when he was hunting a pack of ghouls. After we got through that, he wanted to know if I knew what I was getting into, sneaking off with guys.”

“Are you trying to tell me that Dad wasn’t upset that he caught you with a guy?” Sam asked, disbelieving. He remembered Dad, loved him even, but he’d been a Marine and a hunter. He’d been more comfortable with guns and knives than with feelings and Sam wouldn’t ever be able to forget that training, hunting, killing had come before anything else in his father’s world.

“Wasn’t like he expected grandkids,” Dean said with a shrug. “Or like he didn’t have friends who did the same. And really, did it make any kind of difference, in the end, when we moved to South Dakota the next week?”

“Dad? You’re saying Dad had gay friends?” Sam actually grinned, even if it was a bit bitter. “Maybe when you were little, but anyone I ever met was a hunter. And unless you’re saying Bobby or Caleb was gay, or, maybe Pastor Jim, I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

Dean just nodded.


“Caleb,” Dean said. “You didn’t know Caleb went for guys?”

Sam blinked, trying to reassess Dad’s contact. He remembered all the times they visited him at his apartment in Lincoln. He’d been foul mouthed and taut with ripcord muscle, even when they’d been kids. And he’d always had the best guns, ones that had Dad and Dean drooling. Bobby had called him the best arms dealer west of the Mississippi and Dad had always said that Caleb was the kind of man you wanted at your back in a fight. “Caleb?”

Dean frowned. “It’s not like he made a secret of it. I thought.. I thought you knew. He lost his lover to a Wendigo, back when we were kids. According to Joshua, he went totally batshit when he realised that Terry was dead. Didn’t you pay attention to anything anyone talked about when you were a kid?”

“And you’re saying that no one cared?” Sam bit his lower lip, trying to think of a time when anyone gave Caleb a hard time or commented on it. He tried to imagine Caleb with a guy, tried to put a male face on Terry, whom he’d always thought was a woman. “That people just left him alone?”

Dean shrugged. “Can’t speak for his neighbors, but Dad didn’t care. No hunter I ever met bothered him about it. He could kill a son of a bitch at forty paces and supplied most of the west with their guns.” Dean leaned down and rummaged through his duffel again. “And it’s not like straight hunters are exactly the marrying type, anyway. Didn’t make a difference to them.”

“So you’re saying that since they wouldn’t get married, they didn’t care that Caleb was gay? That’s not how homophobia works, Dean.”

“That’s not how homophobia works?” Dean repeated, dropping the duffel. “You think I don’t know what that looks like? What, you think that this is the first time some asshole called me a fag?”

Sam shrugged defensively against his brother’s sharp tone. “I never saw you with a guy.”

“That’s because you are apparently deaf and blind,” Dean huffed.

Sam leaned back on his bed, trying to rearrange his childhood memories, looking for spaces between Dean’s girls where he could put boys’ name and faces. He remembered a thousand tiny towns, Marianna, Florida to St John, Washington, all of them as endless and anonymous as the last. He remembered Dean’s friends, when he had them, a red-headed mechanic in Missouri and a dark eyed linebacker in West Virginia. “Was I?”

“If you missed the fight I had in Paintsville after someone found me getting fucked by the quarterback’s little brother, I might need to see if you’ve got amnesia. You were pissed,” Dean told him.

“But,” Sam protested, remembering that fight and being furious with Dad for not grounding Dean or even taking away his gun after he beat one of the football players bloody. Dad had just give him ice for his face and told him that they were going to be moving soon anyway. “That was… You were seeing his brother?”

“He didn’t like the new kid making his baby brother a homo and he wanted to say it with his fists,” Dean explained. “And he wasn’t the last.”

Sam frowned, not liking to think of his big brother being the victim of that kind of hate.

“Usually they want to scare you, think that ganging up on you will scare you back to women,” Dean said, meeting Sam’s eyes. “Sometimes they just want to hurt you. I don’t mind showing them a thing or two. It’s people like that… They deserve it. Teach them that I’m more man than three of them, even if I get a black eye for it.”

“And Dad taught you that?” Sam asked. When he saw the hurt and the anger in Dean’s eyes, he clarified, “I’m just saying, Dad had enough issues having the Talk with me. And he was… These are the kinds of places where he was most comfortable. I mean, would you hit on a guy at the Roadhouse?”

Dean shrugged. “Maybe. Maybe not.”


“What?” Dean asked, sounding honestly surprised. “You thought that Ash only went for women? Really?”

Sam frowned, thinking of Ash, thinking of the rough, gun-toting clientele of Ellen’s Roadhouse. He thought of Caleb, dead for three years now, and the devotion and love with which he had always spoken of Terry. He remembered Dad gruffly telling him, “We all get into hunting somehow. Some people get a harder road,” when Sam, before the long, angry struggle of his teenage years, had asked him about Caleb and Terry. He remembered Dad handing Dean the bag of frozen peas when he came home from school, suspended for fighting again, and the pride in Dad’s eyes.

Dean sighed, drawing Sam’s attention back to the present. “It’s not as black and white as all that. There isn’t an Us and a Them, not more than we’re hunters and they’re civilians. I won’t take shit for what I do, but I’m not going to expect to get it just because you carry a gun and drive a truck. Especially not in a hunter’s bar.”

Sam snorted, stifling a real laugh. There was no way to explain to Dean, not in a way he’d really understand, that this new reality was, or, at least, felt a bit like a fairy tale. Sam still remembered, quite clearly, the shock he felt the first time he got hard for a guy. He’d been thirteen and terrified that his father and brother would find out. He remembered the pleasure and relief when he walked into the first meeting of the queer student union at Stanford.

Dean shook his head slightly, as if something had just occurred to him. “So… you figured that me and Dad would be pissed if we knew you went for guys, too?”

Sam shrugged, uncomfortable.

“Oh, man,” Dean grinned like Christmas came earlier. “That means you’ve never been with a hunter, right, unless you had sex with Jo?”

Sam shook his head, dreading whatever Dean would say next.

“We are getting you laid next time we pass by a hunters’ bar,” Dean crowed.

Sam felt his face burn. This was not how he’d expected this conversation to go, at all.
Tags: ,
the gay fresh sentiment of the road: hopefulhopeful
a rearranger of the proverbial bookshelf: Dean & Sam - beers chillembroiderama on May 9th, 2009 05:25 pm (UTC)
So awesome! I love the low drama of this mutual coming out.
keefaqerda_3 on May 9th, 2009 05:55 pm (UTC)
Very nicely done.
Harleycrimsonkitty88 on May 9th, 2009 05:59 pm (UTC)
Harley: SPN: Dean shoulderscrimsonkitty88 on May 9th, 2009 06:11 pm (UTC)
EEP! SEXY!CONFIDENT!FIGHTING!DEAN FTW! I love the Caleb you've described. I love the thought of a hunter being a hotter lay than a civillian.

paleogymnastpaleogymnast on May 9th, 2009 06:29 pm (UTC)
Ok, this is all kinds of awesome. I have a huge smile on my face right now!! :)
Kevin Jonesmulder200 on May 9th, 2009 08:00 pm (UTC)
LOL! I love how Sam went in thinking one thing and ended up learning something completely different.
not so secretly sybariticallivrelibre on May 9th, 2009 10:58 pm (UTC)
Oh I liked this (and the thought of Dean laying the smackdown on bigots)!
Sarari: the Doctorsarari on May 10th, 2009 12:50 am (UTC)
I especially liked the tension running throughout the piece, incredulous!Sam whose eyebrows and voice I pictured to just keep rising at every revelation, and how you brought them into (brief) muscular-manly-forceful physical contact with each other before they left the bar.
Proserpinaproserpina_kore on May 10th, 2009 01:37 am (UTC)
I loved this! Thanks for a great story.
Ossobuco: jolly good!peacebone on May 10th, 2009 03:13 am (UTC)
Nice! Excellent job with Dean's dialogue in particular, and I loved the description in the passage where Dean was cleaning his gun on the bed. *thumbs up!*
roxymissrose: sam by missclaroxymissrose on May 10th, 2009 04:29 am (UTC)
I liked that we're made to think of hunters in a different way. Very interesting!
pixie AKA Maleficent: SPN [D/S: BW: after 4 years]static_pixie on May 11th, 2009 01:51 am (UTC)
I love oblivious Sam because that's so accurate. And Dean's way of defining homophobia it was so Dean, I could hear him saying it in my head. I think you really nailed both their characters here.
[meg]: spn: dean shirt-lifterearthquakedream on May 12th, 2009 10:11 pm (UTC)
I love this! It's basically my new personal canon. Great job. :D

(ps. I'm gonna friend you. I see you all over ffrants and other places on my flist, and you seem like an awesome person. :D)
Taylortaylor_serenil on August 1st, 2009 11:48 pm (UTC)
Go Dean for kicking the bigot's ass.

I liked the bit about Caleb.

And I'd really like to see Dean getting Sam laid by a hunter.
glorious_spoonglorious_spoon on December 12th, 2009 07:09 am (UTC)
Ha! Awesome, Sam attempting to be all Liberal College Boy and Dean's just all, "Uh, yeah, I fuck guys...what, you didn't know?"

So awesome. And Dean totally needs to get Sam laid at the next hunter's bar they pass through.
greenblue26greenblue26 on August 3rd, 2010 06:33 am (UTC)
oh that was too funny. Sam is just completely clueless. Did you ever continue this so that Sam got to be with a hunter?
WHERE DO YOU EVEN BUY A BABY-BLUE KERCHIEF?oywidapoodles on September 13th, 2010 10:07 am (UTC)
This is too perfect. <3

I always thought if they were ever actually gonna have Dean come out as bi in canon it'd be with a "What, like it's a secret?"

Loved this.
lizibabeslizibabes on September 23rd, 2010 09:44 pm (UTC)
This was great, kinda how I always thought Dean would react about being bi, condfident in his sexuality no matter what.
I love the idea of Dean beating up bigots and Jhon being exsepting.
PLease write a sequal were Dean gets Sammy laid by a hunter? pretty please