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SPNFF: Put the Load Right On Me

Title: Put the Load Right On Me
Words: Clocks in at 1383 (+/-)
Warnings: Tag for "Swan Song." Spoiler warnings apply.
Summary: Hunters aren't the only ones who keep journals. Excerpts from a journal kept early days after . . . well, just after.
A/N: Everyone and her sister is writing a "Swan Song" tag. Here's mine.
Disclaimer: Definitely not mine. If they were mine, things would have been different. It might not have ended differently, but getting there would have.


I’m glad he’s here. I’m glad he felt he could come to me. There’s a sadness in him, and if I can do anything to comfort that, I will. Of course I will. He saved Ben and me from that changeling thing, and he promised we’d be safe whenever . . . whatever . . . went down. If I can make him happy, I want to do that.

Candice asked me at lunch today about the hot guy who’s moved in with me. Is it just the sex, or are we in love? Do we love each other? I don’t know. I mean, no, not in the fairy tale, hearts and roses, “you complete me” sense, but do we care about each other? Yes. God, yes. And I know he’d do anything for me or for Ben. Especially for Ben. I don’t know if we’ll ever get married, make it official at the courthouse or whatever, but I never saw myself “settling down” anyway. Right now he just needs someone. He needs somewhere to feel safe, and if I can give him that, I will. Gladly.

There’s a sadness in him, like a weight that presses down on him that I can’t even imagine. He tries to hide it, especially around Ben. But I can see it. I think Ben can, too. The only thing he told me the night he arrived was that his brother, Sam, was gone. Given what I know of what Dean and his brother do, this is more than just Sam taking off for the week or the month or the year. Sam is gone. That’s all Dean would say. That's all he could say. He cried himself to sleep in my arms that night.

He tries to control his drinking, especially around Ben. Beer after work, a whiskey with or after dinner. Usually and after dinner. And he drinks pretty hard before bed, like he can’t sleep without the extra help. He tries to control his drinking, but I can see it. He wants to lose himself in the bottle. His hands twitch like they should be holding a glass, and he’ll wander to the kitchen, open the refrigerator door, look inside, then turn around and look for something else to do.

He’s trying.

But sometimes when Ben is at baseball practice, Dean will go out to the Impala, just him and a fifth of whiskey, and he’ll sit and drink. Sometimes he’ll listen to this sort of easy listening-jazzy-folksy stuff that I wouldn’t have thought he’d like. I’ll join him sometimes, when I start to worry, and I asked him once about the music. “It’s Sam’s,” he said, and left it at that. That’s all I needed to know.

He has horrible nightmares. No surprise, really. Ben and I both had nightmares for weeks after the changeling. I can only imagine what Dean dreams about with the life he’s led. I think maybe Sam was killed by a monster or something.

It usually starts with whispers. Desperate, like he's holding on by the skin of his teeth. Things like, “I’m still here, Sammy” and “I’m not gonna leave.” Sometimes I can wake him up or settle him down before it gets any worse. But if he’s been drinking too much, I can’t get through to him. The shouting and screaming--the terror and the grief--they're the worst.

The first night this happened (the night he arrived) I went to check on Ben after. He said he was okay. “I’m okay, Mom. I know what Dean’s dreaming about. He’s dreaming about the monsters, isn’t he.” I love Ben so much it hurts sometimes.

He fixed the stereo in my car today. Then he washed it and vacuumed it out. And gave it a full detailing. Complete with my favorite air freshener from the candle store. Can you imagine that? Dean Winchester, in a candle store. Shopping for air freshener. I sat in my car and cried for fifteen minutes.

He got a job at a garage across town. It doesn’t make him happy. Nothing really makes him happy. But he’s good with cars, and he says it gives him something to focus on besides the pain. And he loves tinkering with the Impala. He’s shown Ben how to change the oil, change a spark plug, and, I don’t know, fix the timing belt or something. Ben said Dean has plans to add a flux capacitor to the thing so they can travel back in time. If I didn’t know better, I’d think they were serious.

He’s great with Ben. Ben has been showing him how to field grounders, and Dean has been teaching Ben the finer interpretations of Led Zeppelin. But I think Ben knows that this isn’t the same guy who crashed his birthday party almost three years ago. Ben has asked me more than once if Dean will always be sad like this. And if he’ll always need to drink to be able to sleep. I told him I don’t know.

Nothing really makes Dean happy. Sex comes close. He told me once when he'd had too much Jack that sex and drinking were the only two things that got his mind off of what happened. Cars came close, but not completely.

Today was one of his restless days. Some days, he'll read something in the paper, and he's tense and on edge for the rest of the day. It's usually when there's an article about a freak thunderstorm or a missing person. He'll read the article, and then it's like he can't settle down.

Sometimes I hear Dean muttering to himself while he putters around the house. It's usually about Sam. I heard him mention someone named Adam once. Sometimes it's about his dad. Or his mom. I don’t know if he’s praying or talking to Sam or talking to himself or what.

There’s a guy who’s started coming to the house sometimes to talk to Dean. Dark hair, blue eyes, always wears a trench coat. At first I thought it might be the law catching up with Dean—-like Ben and I really need that kind of trouble—-but he seems to be a . . . I don’t know . . . a friend, maybe? They’ll talk privately for a while, and for a while I thought maybe Dean had finally taken my advice to talk to someone, a grief counselor or something. But I don’t think this guy’s a counselor. Sometimes Dean’s a little better when the guy leaves. Sometimes he’s worse. But Dean is trying. He's really, really trying.

Sometimes, when he's low but hasn't started drinking, he'll tell me, out of the blue, "I'm so damn proud of him." I know he's talking about Sam. He misses him so much.

Dean gave me a silver charm this morning that matches his tattoo. He was so sweet about it. He told me, "It's to remember. When you wear it, I want you to remember you're safe." Sometimes I feel so much for him, my heart aches. He is so special. To me. I just want to hold him and make all the pain and the grief go away so we can be happy. I want to protect him as much as he wants to protect us.

Candice made a huge deal out of it when I told her. She insists it's an engagement present or something. She doesn't get me and Dean at all.

I know Dean is trying to make this work. He really is. I told him I’m not expecting anything, I just want to help. He’s good to me, he’s good to Ben, and as long as he doesn’t get abusive, I can deal with the drinking.

Sometimes, when he hits bottom, he just weeps and holds onto me like a drowning man holds onto a life preserver. And he tells me I’m the only thing keeping him from going completely crazy. I'm the reason he hasn't eaten a bullet yet. And it scares the crap out of me.

I don’t know how long Dean will last. And the best I can do is be here for him.

I’m afraid it won’t be enough.



( 21 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 20th, 2010 12:58 pm (UTC)
sniffles. this is good coda. i can totally see dean trying to forget and lisa trying to be that life preserver for him.
May. 20th, 2010 07:38 pm (UTC)
*hand you tissues* Thanks. I'm glad you enjoyed it. And thank you for taking the time to comment.

And I'm glad this feels right. I always try to keep things true to character with what we've seen in show. I'm delighted this works for you.

Thanks for stopping by!
May. 20th, 2010 02:35 pm (UTC)
This occurs to be as very true to life.

Nice writing.
May. 20th, 2010 07:39 pm (UTC)
Thank you. I'm glad you think so.

And thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment. 'Tis much appreciated.
May. 20th, 2010 05:15 pm (UTC)
nice job!
May. 20th, 2010 07:39 pm (UTC)

And thanks for commenting.
May. 20th, 2010 07:25 pm (UTC)
I think this is the Lisa Sam was hoping Dean would find. I'm not sure she exists; I'm not sure any woman would offer this kind of support to a one-night stand from a decade ago, even if he did save her kid. It's nice to think so, and you did a good job of writing her this way.

I'm just not sure I buy this is the way it would go.
May. 20th, 2010 07:52 pm (UTC)
Based on what we've seen of Lisa in the show, I don't think this Lisa is beyond the realm of possibility. It definitely wouldn't be easy for either of them, but given that she was ready to talk him out of his plan; given her "I know" when he told her that when he pictures himself happy, it's with her (like the idea is not new to her); and given her relief when he showed up at her door at the end . . . I think they think of each other as more than just a weekend fling.

(I'm also not entirely convinced that Ben isn't Dean's, but that's neither here nor there. I can go either way on the matter.)

At any rate, everyone's mileage on Lisa seems to be varying right now. I'm glad you enjoyed the writing, if not the story.

Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment.
May. 20th, 2010 08:27 pm (UTC)
Oh no, I *loved* the story. And really I'd like to think this is how Lisa would be for Dean. I just have a little trouble believing things could ever be that easy for Dean, since fate/angels/who-whatever seems bent on making sure his life is as awful as it's possible to be.

I half-believe Ben's his, as well. I'm just not sure Lisa would ever admit it to Dean--or anyone--because to her mind it might be putting Ben at some risk if she confirmed a blood link, either from a legal standpoint or a supernatural one.

And yeah, I suspect I'm looking at this situation through an all-too-real-world filter.
May. 21st, 2010 11:35 am (UTC)
Oh, I'm glad you enjoyed the piece. I've got more thinky thoughts on Dean/Lisa in the post that follows this one, if you're interested.

I also just read your profile page, and it would seem we have an interest in theater in common. I've written several posts discussing Jensen as an actor, if you're interested.
May. 20th, 2010 07:52 pm (UTC)
Love this look from Lisa's POV, and I'm glad you wrote her 'getting' where Dean is now, in such pain but trying.
May. 21st, 2010 11:39 am (UTC)
Thank you. I'm glad you enjoyed the story. And thank you for taking the time to comment.

Yes, I think Dean needs a strong woman who knows the score. And Lisa at least knows part of it. It's probably one of the reasons I liked Jamie, too. Cassie . . . well, the situation with Cassie was problematic for a number of reasons, not the least of which was that I didn't really like the actress who played her. But anyway . . .

Yes. Women who "get" Dean, the real Dean. I think Lisa has the potential to be one of 'em.

Thanks again! Glad you enjoyed it.
May. 22nd, 2010 01:15 am (UTC)
Oh, good. I missed this before. Good job. This is a great coda.
May. 24th, 2010 03:21 pm (UTC)
Thank you! I'm glad you enjoyed it.
May. 22nd, 2010 06:11 am (UTC)
Aww - love the outside POV. Even if we don't hear what Dean is feeling and thinking - it's so plainly by those around him.
May. 24th, 2010 03:25 pm (UTC)
Thank you! I'm glad you enjoyed it, and enjoyed Lisa's POV. I admit that I've got great hopes for Dean and Lisa, though it definitely won't be an easy row to hoe. I'm eager to see where they go from here.

Thanks for reading, as always, and for taking the time to comment.

(Deleted comment)
May. 27th, 2010 12:18 pm (UTC)
Thank you! Glad you enjoyed it. Thanks for the great comment. :-)

I actually do have a scene kicking around in my head that brings Sam back into the picture. I'm not sure you'd call it "happy," exactly. We'll see what Musey decides to do with it. :-)

Thank you so much for stopping by, and for taking the time to comment. 'Tis appreciated muchly!
Nov. 5th, 2010 09:02 pm (UTC)
I'm really glad I came over here and read this. I think you did a great job of capturing how desperate Lisa must have felt to help Dean. Of course he would need someone like her, so patient and understanding. I think most of this still holds up with what we know now. Really lovely fic.
Nov. 5th, 2010 09:07 pm (UTC)
Oh, also, re: your comment above, (which I just spotted) I too, am not very convinced that Ben isn't Dean's! It seems to me the writers have clearly left it open-ended quite deliberately. All we have to go on is Lisa's word. She may just be pulling the old "I don't want you to feel beholden" routine. I wouldn't be surprised in the least. Though I would be pleased as punch!
Nov. 6th, 2010 11:49 pm (UTC)
I can go either way on the Ben thing. I'm not convinced that Ben isn't Dean's, but otoh, Ben being Dean's adopted son, with Dean being the only real dad Ben has ever known, works for me, too. I like the adopted angle because it means that it's a choice.

But I'd be completely okay if Ben were Dean's, though.
Nov. 6th, 2010 11:42 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much! I'm delighted you enjoyed it.

And I'm pleased you think a lot of it still holds up. I'm kind of pleased myself that some of it still seems to apply. And I'm glad Lisa turned out to be as awesome on TV as she was in my head. She's very good for Dean. He needs someone like her.

Thanks for reading, and for taking the time to comment. 'Tis much appreciated.
( 21 comments — Leave a comment )


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