Rating: PG - Gen
Disclaimers: SPN & characters are owned by their various creators.
Summary: In the middle of a boiling heat wave, Dean pulls off a mountain road to go skinny dipping.
Sam wondered how much a human being could sweat before they just died.
They had been both slowly dying in the car for the last 200 miles, the asphalt shimmering with liquid mirage with the mid summer heat wave. Not a breath of weather or a nearby ocean to ease it down, it just got hotter and more humid until Dean had to switch off the half hearted air conditioning or they'd end up steaming on the shoulder of the road.
He had never really minded a good hot day but there was a large difference between liking some sun and wanting to be standing directly on its surface. Especially in a tinder box of a metal black sunlight absorption machine which was the car. When he had started to drape limply out of the open window like some hapless pet perishing from heatstroke his brother had given up and pulled over.
At first Sam was outraged that the less than comforting solar winds made from the car's motion had been so brutally taken away. That was until he realized why Dean had stopped in the first place.
He heard it before he turned and saw it.
The gravel of a stony beach lead flat and right down a shore of pine, the gurgle and splash of the water giving the air a sharp clean scent. The forest on the other side of it was thick and wild, nothing for miles and miles beyond until you hit the mountains that sat just above and in the distance. Streams like this were all over, rushing with run off down from those peaks that kept their snowy caps all year round. It looked like one of those scenes in a movie where some old guy was fly fishing in hip waders and telling you about the war.
The car door handle was so hot Sam thought it would leave an impression on his hand like that Nazi with the medallion in Indiana Jones. Dean was already unsteadily walking across the stones that made up the beach, his boots not exactly the right sort for the terrain.
Kicking off his sneakers with relief, Sam followed him more carefully and finding a large old sun bleached log, took a seat. The effect the icy water had when he slipped his bare feet in up to the calves of his jeans was maybe the best thing he had ever felt in his life. He pulled his shirt off over his head and dunked it in, wadding it up and dousing his face and hair with it.
Sam sat back, leaning on the palms of his hands. The sky now feeling hot and good on his cooled upturned face. He expected Dean to do the same but Sam was seated alone. He looked behind him, using one hand to cut the sun's overhead glare.
"What are you doing?"
"See that rock?" Dean asked as he unbuckled his belt. His shirt and boots were tossed behind him on the ground.
Sam looked to where his brother had gestured. Just a dozen yards down stream where it began to bend slightly east was an rocky outcrop. It was a small cliff that rose at least 20 feet above the much deeper water.
"What about it?" Sam replied, looking at a small tree that had grown in the soil that had collected on its very top. It was leaning precariously over the outcrops edge, its roots trailing down its sides like vines.
"I'm gonna climb it." Dean nodded determinedly in its direction. "And then I'm going to jump off of it."
"Why yes, I seem to be."
"Right next to the road and with about 100 different reasons why we don't want a state trooper on our ass?"
"What is it with you?"
"Someone could just come along that's all."
"Sam, there's nothing out here but a couple of birds and some fish." Dean shrugged. "And guess what? They're all naked too."
"Don't forget bears."
"Good thing we're packin' then huh?" Dean winked.
Sam was blissfully not dying anymore so decided not to argue. His brother could always cut him off at his own passes anyway. Always point out what was next to obvious when it seemed Sam just couldn't see it from out under the noise that was constantly buzzing in his head.
It was kind of like when he was singing along too loudly with the radio and Dean would suddenly turn the volume down so he could hear himself sounding like a big idiot. His brother was always there and ready with just the exact combination of words when Sam had let himself go too far for no good reason. But he always did it with a smile. A joke. An unrecognizable reprimand to cool it and stow his unneeded worry away. And he was almost always completely right.
He took up two handfuls of water and drank it. It was sweet and cold. Like just melted snow. Flecks of stone glittered on his hands, the sand under his feet clouding when he tried to bury them in it. He had to pull them up and out onto a sun baked rock because they had started going numb and almost painful.
Dean finally appeared on the top of the outcrop.
Sam wondered how that climb up through the forest undergrowth to get up there had been with no clothes on. The thought made him laugh a little bit. Dean was so fucking retarded.
His older brother seemed to pause on his captured rock to take a look around at his well earned view.
"Jump already!" Sam shouted loudly up at him.
Instead, Dean held two arms up triumphantly and gave out a yell towards the tangle of wilderness that lay around them in its hazy indifference. The sound of his voice echoed all across the expanse of the water and the smooth stones that sat scattered in its flow. Retarded or not, Sam suddenly wished he had gone up there with him to take that long plunge. He glanced down at the time winding to evening on his wrist watch. Even if they had to get moving soon.
Dean caught his attention, warning Sam of his upcoming feat like some little kid at a swimming pool about to do something crazy off the diving board. When he finally stepped into empty air, Sam grinned at the next yell of indignation when his brother quickly resurfaced from the churn of the stream below.
"Holy shit, this water is mother fuckin' cold!!" Dean gasped.
"You done?" Sam called out.
"Just one more time." Dean promised breathlessly as he hauled himself up and sat on a boulder that made the nearby shore. "Maybe two."
Sam stood up with a sigh.
If they were sticking around, he might as well at least try it once.