Dean’s hand went to his amulet, the memory of his younger brother, big hazel eyes staring hopefully at him as he opened the gift coming back as clear as day. He would never risk taking it off, afraid of losing it to an errant gust of air, or slipping into a crack to vanish forever.
After all, that same brother was now a towering giant, wherever he might be. If he found Dean, he would simply catch his older brother and drop him into a cage. Maybe worse, depending on the way their dad had trained him. Dean would cling to those memories like a lifeboat, knowing he’d never see Sam again.
Those memories would never leave him, but here and now he needed to stay sharp. He came up to the end of the vent, suspended up in the air almost six feet. The design of the motel had never made sense to him, but who was he to question it?
No one would listen to a man that stood under four inches tall.
Dean leaned against the grate, staring out into the immense motel room.
The vertigo hit him, as it always did, but this was more important than his fears or the thought of getting teased because he was afraid of heights. Those eyes, seen so briefly in the room earlier, haunted him. Soft, familiar hazels that forced his mind into the past, to a time before he’d been cursed. So many years ago now… soon he would have lived over half his life under this infernal curse.
At the table below, the man that had checked in earlier was sitting with a dusty old book. One huge hand turned the page with a loud crinkle, smoothing it carefully down. Fluffy brown hair was scattered messily about, in clear need of a good brush. Dean’s hand went to his own hair instinctively, trying to fix his spiky style. Cutting it himself didn’t make it easy, but he persevered.
While Dean was distracted, he accidentally leaned too much of his weight on the grate. With a loud, echoing Creak! the air vent slid shut, sending him to his knees without warning. He slammed into the metal ground with a loud (to his ears) thump.
For a long, heart-stopping moment, there was nothing but silence.
Then, it came. The most terrifying sound he could have heard.
A shifting of fabric in the motel room outside indicated the human standing. “Hello?” rumbled a curious voice from outside, making Dean shiver once with worry. The human was tall enough to see into the vent while standing if he wanted to, and if he realized what was hiding from him in there…
Dean didn’t move, simply trying to wait it out. The human would just assume he heard the motel settling, just like anyone else. No reason to check the vent, no way to see Dean in there.
No such luck.
There was a creak from the vent again. The human was moving it. He needed to get out of there, now. If he got caught by such a huge human, the largest he’d ever seen, there would be no hope of escape.
Dean went to run, and fell flat on his back. His satchel! When the grate had closed it had snagged the strap, effectively trapping the small human.
Hearing metal on the outside, Dean writhed to escape the bag. He recognized a screwdriver out there, working to reveal his hiding place to the world for all to see. He managed to twist himself out just as a beam of light fell over his surroundings.
It was opening up.
Light poured into the small space even as Dean scrambled to his feet, bolting for the end of the passage as fast as he could. There was a shout of surprise, then the opening darkened.
Dean risked a glance over his shoulder and his eyes widened at the sight of the massive hand coming right at him.
Dean did his best to dive out of the way of the oncoming hand, but it was a useless attempt. Before he could get farther than a foot down the vent, the back of his jacket was snagged between two massive fingers. He squirmed, trying to wrench free even as he was dragged relentlessly back several inches all at once, growing ever closer to the massive human that almost had him in his grasp. Nothing he did could slow down the movement.
Abandoning that strategy, Dean changed tactics. Instead of trying to get free of the fingers, he yanked each arm out of the jacket. He tumbled to the ground in his black tee, scared green eyes sending a brief glance back at the surprised human that was left holding a tiny jacket in his hands.
Scrambling to his feet, Dean ran.
This time, the hand that came from him didn’t waste time pinching his shirt. Massive fingers enveloped him on both sides. Before he could attempt to dodge, they all closed up at once, pinning his arms and legs even as his entire body was concealed inside of a massive fist. Dean tried to kick a leg free, determined to make his captor pay for every inch taken, but found himself too weak to manage it. The human had him trapped with no way of even moving a finger.
Disorientation hit, and he realized that the hand must be sailing through the air. His pulse started to race at the thought that he was flying through the air under a complete stranger’s control, with no way to save himself if that fist was to open up in midair and drop him to the merciless ground below. His desperate squirms froze at that thought, fear filling his body.
He was flying through the air.
His chest hiccuped in a gasp of breath, trying his best not to hyperventilate as he realized how helpless he was. Nothing he could do would come close to stopping the behemoth man that held him trapped. Even his knife, wonderfully cared for after all the years he’d spent at this size, was out of reach in the jacket he’d stripped off.
The time for him to think came to an end as the hand stopped moving. Before Dean could think of a way to stop it, he was tumbling through the air.
Dean slammed into the ground, rolling over as fast as he could. The second he could find his feet, he was up and backing away from the huge human staring down at him, awe in those familiar hazel eyes.
“Whoa…” said the other man, amazement just oozing from his voice.
Dean took a few more wary steps back as the human leaned down to see him better. The huge brow furrowed above as his outright fear was noticed.
“It’s okay,” said the other man, his voice a quiet rumble of reassurance. “I’m not gonna hurtcha.”
Dean tensed, ready to bolt at a moment’s notice. “How do I know you’re telling the truth?” he spat angrily. “You just grabbed me, after all.”
The other man smirked at that, sending chills up Dean’s spine at the casual disregard for his anger. “I’m not the one that’s out here spying on people,” the man with the hazel eyes pointed out. “All I did was catch the person sneaking around near my room. So don’t go thinking you’re innocent in all of this.”
Dean stiffened at the accusation. He knew it was true, the way humans thought. But he wasn’t a human, not anymore, and he needed to ascertain the danger the massive man posed his family.
That was the last thing he’d ever admit, though. He couldn’t reveal the existence of any others like him, he might put them in danger.
He almost leaped away as a massive hand came at him again, but to his shock, this time it didn’t grab at him. His jacket was lying draped across fingers that were longer than he was tall, held out for him to take back.
He stared up at the man suspiciously, refusing to take the bait and get himself in any more trouble. His hands clenched into angry fists.
The other man sighed. “I really won’t hurt you if you’re not hurting anyone else, y'know. I’m a hunter, but I don’t think someone the length of my pinkie really applies.”
Dean almost snarled at the way he’d been put down as non-threatening, but he held his tongue. He stomped over to the hand, snatching up the black jacket and tossing it back over his arms. He was never self-conscious about his body, but the sight of how thin his carefully trained, muscular body was compared to just a finger was not a sight he wanted to see. With the jacket on - and his knife tucked back against his chest, ready to be wielded if he needed it - he felt more prepared for the situation he’d fallen into.
The other man put his hand on the table once it was empty, keeping it close enough to Dean that any escape attempts would be fruitless until his guard was dropped. Dean knew what hunters were. He was supposed to be one, after all. He needed to be careful how he approached this situation, otherwise he might end up dead as an assumed threat.
The hazel eyes narrowed, scanning Dean head to toe. Dean stiffened at the scrutiny, hating the way he was being sized up.
He didn’t find out what the man thought of what he saw. Any chance he had of focusing on his precarious situation was brought to a screeching halt by the next word’s out of the man’s mouth.
“So, what’s your name? I’m Sam.”
Dean gaped up at the other person at the table with him, unable to reconcile everything that had just happened. Brown hair, familiar hazel eyes, goddamn familiar dimples that appeared while he was stating his name… and Sam.
“Not possible,” he growled up. Ignoring the fact that he was trapped at the table, Dean stalked away from the other man. “Not friggin’ possible, your name cannot be Sam!”
Sam, too surprised by the reaction he’d gotten, didn’t bother grabbing the smaller person back at first. “What are you talking about? It’s just a name, after all.”
Dean whipped around and found himself shouting. “You cannot be Sam because Sam cannot be here and I’m never gonna see him again!” All of the pent up frustration from being trapped for years in a place where he had no escape came pouring out, stabbing straight at the only target he had. “He left and he never came back and I got stuck here!” He jabbed his finger angrily in the direction of the giant. “Not that you’d have any idea how it feels to be left behind by your family! ”
Dean paced angrily back and forth. “And now I’m stuck here, trapped, and the entire goddamn universe just wants to rub my nose in my shitty-ass life by sending another Sam to grab me and remind me of everything I lost!”
The human was slack-jawed as the small ball of anger stalked back and forth on the table in front of him, trying to wrap his mind around the words that had been spewed forth. He reached a hand forward, pinching one of the small shoulders between a finger and a thumb. Dean froze, his entire body turning stiff at the unexpected contact. There was nothing he could do to stop this stranger.
The human leaned down, his soft hazel eyes drawing Dean’s straight to them. Not possible.
“What’s your name?” asked the human softly. Sam asked softly.
Dean’s fist clenched. “Dean,” he snapped.
Sam’s eyes widened.
The seconds dragged out as Sam stared down at Dean, unable to say a word. Having trouble even thinking.
The words that the strange little man he’d found in his room resounded in his head, taking root in his mind.
He left and he never came back and I got stuck here!
Not that you’d have any idea how it feels to be left behind by your family!
And of course, he was remembering what motel he was staying at. Trails West; the same motel they’d been staying at when his big brother Dean had died. He saw his brother in his mind’s eye, leaping into the witch’s attack and shoving Sam out of the way.
He saw the attack hit yet again, the air warping around Dean as he vanished. Protecting his baby brother to the last second.
“Holy shit,” Sam whispered in realization. His fingers almost leapt away from that tiny, frail body he’d just grabbed moments ago. His brother. He’d grabbed his brother. “Holy shit… I mean, fuck.”
Sam leaned in close, wanting to see all the features of the small person he was holding captive. “Dean… is it really you?”
Dean shuffled back a few steps, a look of fear briefly overriding his aggravation. Guilt hit Sam at that, realizing after the way he’d grabbed the man and trapped him, he deserved that fear.
Dean didn’t say a thing, but he reached inside the small black t-shirt he was wearing. Hesitantly, he pulled out a small necklace. Sam couldn’t see what it was since it was barely the size of a grain of sand, but his eyes widened in realization as the light glimmered off of a brass amulet.
And then he knew.
It was the amulet he’d given his brother.
The man who’d named himself Sam gaped at the tiny amulet in amazement. It was so small next to him, Dean found himself in shock that someone so massive would even be able to tell what it was. He tucked it back into his shirt, hating how small it always looked against the gigantic surroundings.
And now it was smaller than ever. He was surrounded by massive books that Sam had been reading, a huge bottle of water looming overhead and an enormous laptop blocking the table from behind. There was nothing in the entire room that was made for his size. No, it was all made for Sam’s size. Who was still human.
Who was still alive.
Deep in the darkest recesses of his mind, Dean had feared for years that Sammy would get hurt, would get himself killed because their dad let his guard down or took Sam on a hunt he wasn’t prepared for. Dean had spent years trying to keep his brother safe, but none of that mattered when you were effectively dead to them.
He rubbed a hand over his face, trying to sort out the conflicting emotions. Anger. Rage. Unbridled joy at discovering his little brother was alive and well. A fucking Godzilla, but alive, and suddenly that’s all that mattered as the reality sunk in.
Sam must have been thinking along the same lines as Dean. He stared back at his ‘big’ bro like a man that had just found an oasis in the desert, hazel eyes more potent than ever now that they were the size of Dean’s head.
Dean took a step forward. “Sammy…” he started gruffly, throat closing at the emotions. He hadn’t uttered that name in over thirteen years.
And now that baby brother was here, a full grown… overgrown… man. Lean, in shape, damn fast reflexes and good instincts… Someone that Dean could be proud of.
Sam’s face relaxed into a smile at the familiar nickname. “I’m here, Dean. I was gone for a long time, but I’m here now.”
He reached forward carefully, slipping his hand under the smaller Winchester’s body. This time, Dean didn’t fight it as a tear rolled down his cheek. This time, he was lifted from the table carefully, his back supported by long fingers that stretched over his head. Even the vertigo was gone as he stared into Sam’s watering eyes, as overwhelmed by emotion as Dean was.
The huge, powerful hands cupped him against Sam’s chest, where he could hear his brother’s steady heart thud along, where he could feel its every beat deep in his bones.
“You don’t have to be alone anymore.”