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03 November 2005 @ 10:38 pm
Supernatural FanFiction: In Search of Ordinary Dreams  
Title: In Search Of Ordinary Dreams
Author: HalfshellVenus
Catetory: Sam and Dean (Gen, Season One)
Rating: PG

x-x-x-x-x

It’s sprinkling, and Sam feels the wetness on his face. The sky is too dark to see clouds, but he knows that feeling well.

Suddenly, the rain seems thick—sticky even—and there is a burning smell in the air. He looks right, left and still sees nothing. There is no sign of fire, no evidence of trouble. When he looks up again, it is no longer dark. She is there—Jess-- suspended above him and consumed by flames. Her blood drips down on him. Her eyes are dead and black, but seem to accuse him all the same. Sam opens his mouth to yell, but no sound comes out. He tries harder. And harder, putting all the force of his lungs behind it—


“Sam! Sammy, wake up!” Dean is shaking his shoulder as Sam thrashes up out of the nightmare. How can they be so fresh, so real, when they keep repeating over and over? How can anything so familiar still be so vivid? So frightening?

He lets out a sigh of pained relief. He can’t change the reality… but he’s no longer reliving it right this moment.

Dean climbs into bed behind him, burrowing under the covers. He rubs Sam’s back slowly, clumsily, not fully awake himself. Sam feels his panic ebbing away as the edges of the dream scatter into the reality of the moonlit hotel room. The ceiling is just a ceiling. It is as empty and harmless as it should be. He wriggles back against Dean, and just lies there, feeling the comfort of his warmth. Dean’s rubbing slows, his arm sliding onto the bed lifeless, and then he jerks awake again a second later. He wraps his arm around Sam’s stomach, nuzzling into him and already nearly asleep.

Sam puts his hand over Dean’s, holding it close against him. Holding it like an anchor against an unforgiving sea.

This is where he always felt safe—at night, curled up next to Dean.

Not during the daytime, where he saw too many things that a child should never see. His father refused to leave him behind on their missions, too worried for Sam’s safety to let him get too far away. But as a result, corpses and ghouls and wraiths had become part of his childhood reality. No six-year-old should know the proper way to stake a vampire, he thought. Or the sound it makes when it dies.

His father kept him alive… but took his innocence in doing it.

Daytime could be frightening, even unbearable. At night, though, they were rarely visited. He never really knew why. Maybe with the wards and the charms and the spells—and the constant moving from place to place— it was just possible that seeking out and attacking their family had been more trouble than it was worth.

He still feels safe now, in the dark, with Dean here to protect him. This was the part of his childhood that was predictable, that actually worked.

Wrapped in Dean’s arms, Sam begins to drift again.

He is standing by a lake, on a brilliant, sunny day. Nothing rises from its depths. There is no nearby forest with dark and hungry things waiting to approach.

It is just a lake, beautiful and peaceful with ripples brushing across the surface and waves lapping at the edges. It is simple and quiet, the water clear and blue, and he gazes at the grassy banks in unhurried calm. A breeze forms, wafting across the surface.

He thinks it smells like summer…



 
 
 
Leslie: iconic.moon--squeeshadowcat15 on November 4th, 2005 07:09 am (UTC)
Nice. I love how it covers his relationship with his dad, Dean, and Jess all in one little piece.
Jyeviljy on November 4th, 2005 01:45 pm (UTC)
sad and beautiful.

While you describe how frightening Sam's childhood had been you show us that it wasn't all bad, he wasn't and isn't alone.

I have to agree with shadowcat15 that you did a good job of addressing all three relationships with so few words.

... and yes, the slasher in me is satisfied as well. *g*
Staceystaceey on November 4th, 2005 05:14 pm (UTC)
I really enjoyed this. Great job and I look forward to reading more. Love the Sam and Dean dynamic here showing how Sam feels safest with Dean which makes alot of sense.
mica_chan: Prison Break - by unconfessed - pb1x0826mica_chan on November 4th, 2005 06:20 pm (UTC)
Well, as I hadn't commented it before...here I am ^_^.
I liked a lot your work. You write quite well, and it was nice the way you put things out.
Unfortunatly the story is too short, but I think you said what you came here to say, and that's what really matters.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Icon by Cathybiteshalfshellvenus on November 4th, 2005 08:39 pm (UTC)
Yes, I wish it were longer, but even as I re-read it several times it just seemed to be complete (and _done_) the way it was.
abstractprose on November 4th, 2005 06:45 pm (UTC)
I've always liked the idea of Sam's finding Dean as the only constant in his life. The imagery you used was beautiful, by the way, and I love how the slash came in undertones.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Icon by Cathybiteshalfshellvenus on November 4th, 2005 08:38 pm (UTC)
Thank you.

It isn't actually intended to be slash, although you could see it as such if you want.

It's more that we see that Dean is, at heart, a good brother-- more than Sam usually realizes. And that returning to the safety of something he remembers from his childhood works as well for Sam as anyone else.

The imagery at the end, believe it or not, is actually very similar to the kinds of things I tell my kids to imagine when they're having troubling settling down to go to sleep. Almost a form of self-hypnosis. (Kids!? Too much information?)

But it was intended to contrast with Sam's earlier nightmare, which can repeat itself in so many awful variants over and over, until it ultimately becomes recognizeable as Jess' death yet again.
abstractprose on November 5th, 2005 11:39 pm (UTC)
I know it wasn't intended to be slash, and that was what was beautiful about it. Thanks again for this piece.
Never store shuriken in your underwearporntestpilot on February 7th, 2006 12:33 am (UTC)
This is I don't want to say cute, but maybe calming and I don't know, I just like him sleeping in Dean's arms.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Sam & Dean Gen: icon by Tinamishihalfshellvenus on February 7th, 2006 12:43 am (UTC)
This is I don't want to say cute, but maybe calming

Thank you :-D

The end is meant to be soothing-- and a little bit hopeful-- in contrast to the beginning.

I don't know, I just like him sleeping in Dean's arms.

Me too, obviously. I think, considering their childhood and where Sam's security came from when he needed it, that this would feel in many ways... like returning home.
tyrical: SPN_Taillypo_SD_togethertyrical on February 10th, 2006 05:40 pm (UTC)
First off I loved the title.

The vividness of reliving the same moment over and over in your dreams. The fact that no matter when you close your eyes you are afraid to sleep. Afraid of what the dreams are. That the chance to sleep and dream of the ordinary is a luxury. One that eludes Sam at this time.

His father kept him alive… but took his innocence in doing it.

Loved this line. I think it encapsulates how Sam feels betrayed by his father.

The fact that safety and comfort are all springing from Dean at this time is beautiful. I like the fact that Sam is not alone in his pain. That he does have one safe harbour.

The duality of Sam's and Dean's relationship makes the fact that Sam feels safe in Dean's arms that much more powerful. As much as Sam loves his brother, he hates his brother a little too, he depends on his brother a lot more than he wants to, he's jealous of his brother, jealous of the relationship that his brother has with his father.

I love that fact that despite all that complicatedness. In the end they have each other. You show that over and over in several different ways. All of which is usually more powerful than the one that came before it. Even if the suggestion of such thing is a subtle as A breeze forms, wafting across the surface.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Sam & Dean Gen: icon by Tinamishihalfshellvenus on February 10th, 2006 06:24 pm (UTC)
Oh, it is *so nice* having you make your way back through these older fics. It's like Christmas again for me!

Loved this line. I think it encapsulates how Sam feels betrayed by his father.
Even if that isn't what his father intended, he put his mission before the understanding of what things children should and should not be exposed to. *Sigh* As a parent, I battle this all the time with my kids' secondary exposure to things their friends see and know, but probably should not at a particular age.

The fact that safety and comfort are all springing from Dean at this time is beautiful. I like the fact that Sam is not alone in his pain. That he does have one safe harbour.
And that he's always had it, even though-- as the "child" in that relationship-- he may not realize it.

I loved your description of the complexities of their relationship, the love/hate/security/jealous combination that is like most relationships-- never entirely just one thing.

I love that fact that despite all that complicatedness. In the end they have each other. You show that over and over in several different ways.
They are each other's security and safety, even just subconsciously. That ending shows the possibility of serene comfort, the security that Dean provides against the inescapable parts of their lives that Sam does not like. "He thinks it smells like summer..." is a glimpse of lightness and hope.

As always, I so much appreciate all your wonderful and detailed feedback. It is such a joy to receive :-)
tyrical: Action_Hugs and Kissestyrical on February 10th, 2006 10:11 pm (UTC)
It is such a joy to receive :-)

You're welcome hon! :)
Maerhysmaerhys on July 23rd, 2009 05:06 pm (UTC)
Hello & FYI, I recced this fic at spnroundtable over here. ♥
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Sam & Dean Hughalfshellvenus on July 26th, 2009 06:52 am (UTC)
Wow-- talk about your surprises! Thank you!