If the brothers could correct one moment of their past lives, what would it be? One-shot. Gen.
Zeppelin's 'What Is And What Should Never Be' blared out from the speakers, filling the silence pervading the Impala.
Dean tapped a finger on the wheel to the beat, at the same time throwing the occasional glance at his sibling whose eyes had been fixed on the boring panorama of uncultivated country-side for the past hour.
Usually Sam would fall asleep soon after settling in the car, relinquishing himself completely to the competent hands of his big brother and to the familiar odours and cradle-rocking of the Impala.
The occasions Sam didn't sleep were either because he was researching, working through hunting options or as Dean was sure this was the case, brooding.
"Earth to Sam," he ventured, turning the music down.
Sam roused himself from his torpor, flicking his eyes over at his brother, giving him a diffident smile.
"Sometimes I wish I was. "
"Huh, never took you for a star trek geek," Dean smirked.
Sam hummed. "That's not what I meant, Dean. It's just from up there," he said lifting his head. "The Earth looks like a tiny rock in space, and any problems completely unimportant."
"Getting philosophical, are we Sammy? Never something good! And by problems,you mean Winchester problems?"
"Yeah, I suppose I do." Sam pulled a face.
"Ah, Sammy. When are you gonna let go! We're not to blame for everything that happens. We're only two guys trying to do the right thing and save a few lives"
"Two guys who nearly caused the Apocalypse, and one, " He pointed a finger at himself. "Who let Lucifer out of his cage."
Dean rolled his eyes.
"Sam. It's all in the past! We've paid dearly for any mistakes we've made, that's more than many others have. Why can't you look at the good we've done... and we have helped people too."
"Yeah, I know we have Dean. But still.."
Sam shifted towards his brother, his earnest gaze pinning him.
"Dean, if you had the chance to go back and change one thing; what would it be?"
"Sam, come on!"
"No Dean, seriously. One action, moment or word you wish you'd done differently."
"Listen, Sammy. Whatever shit we did in the past isn't important. We're here now, aren't we? Both of us. Sitting in my Baby, relatively whole. That's all that matters to me. The past can't be changed so why don't you just let go and stop feeling guilty?"
Sam pouted; Dean lifted his eyes heavenward.
"All right. Anything to keep you from pouting."
""I'm not pouting!" Sam exclaimed indignantly.
"You so are, little brother!" Dean laughed, amused by his sibling's pissed expression.
"So," Sam persevered, refusing to be side-lined. "Are you gonna give me an answer?"
"God, you're like a dog with a bone when you get something into your head. I think I preferred it when you were brooding! "
But with a resigned huff, Dean capitulated.
"If I had to change one thing? Uh, Come on, I dunno, Sam. I've done so much crap, I wouldn't know where to start."
He glanced over at his brother who was waiting expectantly.
"Okay. I wouldn't have gone back to 1973 when Castiel dragged me there. Happy now?" Dean puffed turning up the music, just to see Sam's hand lower it again.
"Dean, of all the things you could have done, that's what you'd change?"
"What more do you want, Sam? You asked me a question and I answered."
"Yeah but," Sam spluttered. "You have to explain why."
"No, I don't! That wasn't part of the deal," Dean grunted. "But as I'm an awesome brother, I will.
It's simple Sam. That was when Azazel got your scent. If the angel hadn't taken me back, the Campbell family would never have been killed, Dad would never have died. Mom would never have made the deal with Azazel and you'd never have been infected with demon blood. Maybe mom and dad would still be alive, you could have been the big time lawyer you wanted to be, and I could have had somethin' different too."
Sam considered his brother's answer and nodded. "Yeah. I can see how that would have changed things. But the apocalypse would still have been on."
"Na. Without the demon blood, you wouldn't have been able to go down the "let Lucifer out of the cage" trail." Dean stated.
"Your turn Sammy!"
Sam snorted. "It'd be easier to pick something I did right!"
"Uh-no! Choose one! You made me!"
"Okay," Sam agreed, flushing slightly. "I wouldn't have gone to Stanford."
Sam's choice took Dean completely by surprise.
He'd expected Sam to mention Cold Oak or the Ruby/demon blood fiasco he'd always felt guilty about; not that.
Now that he thought about it though, if Sam hadn't gone to Stanford, Jessica would probably still be alive.
"Yeah. Jessica wouldn't have died. I get it, Sam"
"No Dean. You don't understand," Sam interrupted. "I mean yes, Jessica wouldn't have died but she's not why I'd change Stanford. I couldn't do that to you again, man. You were on your own for four years without back-up; no-one to tend to your wounds, no-one to talk to. All alone. If I could go back, I'd never have left you."
"At most I'd have pestered you until you came to College with me."
"Sam," Dean mouthed, touched.
He stretched out an arm along the top of the bench seat and cupped the back of his brother's neck. "Whatever happened in the past doesn't matter to me. You're my brother. We're blood. Nothing can ever change that. Nothing."
Sam swallowed, moved by his big brother's words.
Their enemies were right about them. The Winchester brothers only cared about each other, lived and died for each other, were happy only when the other was at their side. What was wrong with that!
Dean turned up the music. Zeppelin got it right. 'What is', was all that mattered.