Rating: PG - wee!chesters- Gen
Disclaimers: SPN & characters are owned by their various creators.
Summary: Children shouldn't play with dead things.
It was hot out.
Too hot. Sam wished he was wearing shorts and playing in some water and not trapped waiting bored in his sweaty jeans on the baking concrete. Nothing to do but wait around for his brother to get bored too. So far not much luck since Dean had found a tennis ball to mess around with.
Sam was crouched down at the edge of the curb and hugging his knees.
"What's wrong with it?"
"It's circling the drain." Dean said absently from somewhere behind him, the sound of the neon green ball banging with a springing sound off the convenience store's bricked side.
"No it's not." Sam mumbled into the hands on his knees. A plastic bag filled with some things they had been sent out for sat slumped by his side. Some of those papers their dad used to make cigarettes. Some dry cereal. Milk. A few newspapers and a couple Snickers bars that Sam had stuck into the bag while Dean pretended to see a fallen twenty dollar bill behind the counter.
"Don't touch it."
Sam didn't know how Dean, focused on his stupid game that wasn't even a game, knew that he had a hand out ready to poke what he had found laying in the gutter. But he somehow had.
"I'm not!" Sam protested as he reluctantly withdrew his hand and shoved it back between his knees.
He wasn't quite sure his brother was correct in his diagnosis of the large broken body of the black bird he had discovered either. By the looks of it, it had finished circling the drain a long time ago and was now, just well... down and away where ever drains took things.
The tennis ball bounced hard off the back of his head.
"I said don't touch it!" Dean growled.
Sam snatched his hand back again, ruefully rubbing at the back of his head. His brother had been quick, but not fast enough to stop Sam from grabbing one black iridescent feather.
A loud adult voice startled them both.
"Kid, take your ball and go play somewheres else huh? Walls have two sides! You're driving me crazy with that thing--Hey!"
The tennis ball made contact with its second human target of the day, and Sam didn't need to be told when to run. Grabbing the bag and taking off, he made sure the feather slipped into his back pocket in one piece.
When they got home he could take a better look at it without his older brother's interference.
It turned out the store guy was pissed off enough to follow them for more that the usual ‘average pissed off adult distance’ of one block.
Huffing and puffing under the glare of the sun, they reached the end of four entire blocks at full speed. His brother deemed it was safe to proceed at a slower pace and relieved Sam of the bag heavy with the milk carton. All Sam wanted to do was go home, stick his face under the faucet and drink all the water he could. However when they got home, Sam found himself standing very quietly behind his brother while Dean explained the presence of two (or technically one chocolate bar and one wrapper as Sam had been very hungry when they had left the store.) pieces of candy they hadn't been given money to purchase. After the chase, both of them had promptly forgotten all about the contraband.
By the time dinner had been threatened as forfeit, Sam was thankful that he had at least eaten that evening. He was also grateful that Dean hadn't just turned him in so he could have dinner himself. Yawning and thinking about his bed, Sam had all but forgotten about the feather in his back jean pocket.
That was until, his father called him softly by his name.
Sam snapped to, chewing at the inside of his mouth and wondering if he should tell his father that Dean was actually the one that had eaten the Snickers so that maybe he'd get the second one as a reward for honesty--
"What's that in your back pocket?"
For a moment, Sam had no idea. In a panic he imagined one hundred and one incriminating things his older brother could have planted on his person to reek havoc on his bedtimes and allowance.
"Come here." Came the order.
Sam obeyed unenthusiastically.
"Where'd you find this?” His father pulled out the feather from behind him.
“Oh, um,” Sam explained. "Offa bird that was going down the drain."
"They say," his father said, the quill in his fingertips as he twirled it back and forth."…that the feather of a Raven can bring you prophetic dreams."
"Prophetic?" He knew that meant telling the future but he didn't know how a feather was supposed to make the future in your dreams. He was just relieved that this had nothing to do with that Snickers bar.
"You can put it under your pillow." His dad smiled.
Sam half smiled back. "Dean said, he said not to touch it?"
"So, don't tell 'em." He said, solving Sam's dilemma as he cracked the cap off of a beer.
"Tell me what?" Dean asked hanging from the doorway of their room, his imposed isolation and prison of their room, the threshold like an invisible barrier keeping him in.
"How are you not gonna know if I go and tell ya?" Their dad asked, enjoying the confused look his oldest son got on his face. "Get out here and eat some dinner then get to bed."
Sam rolled the feather thoughtfully in his fingers.
"That means you too." His dad ordered.
Sam nodded and made his way to the bathroom. He didn't feel much like eating a whole entire dinner after all that candy. All that chocolate and then all that running in the sun had left a funny feeling in the pit of stomach that hadn’t quite gone away yet. All he wanted to do is brush his teeth and go to bed. He looked at the feather, black and stark on the white sink's edge as the water ran and he worked the brush in and out of his mouth. When he was done washing his face he picked up the feather again, admiring the fine and strange colors it held when he turned it in the light.
He blinked, the funny feeling in his stomach turning into something worse.
The mirror in front of his face moved like a puddle when you stepped into the middle of it. With a small gasp he saw colors, colors like the kind that shined like a dark rainbow along the feather's edge. They moved slowly and laboriously, taking forms of people he knew. Taking on faces he saw every day. But they looked older, tired and different. A larger image was taking form, bit by bit by until he saw--
It all abruptly stopped when his shaking hand went slack, and the feather fell from his grip.
Swallowing hard once and heart pounding, Sam stepped away from the black length of it that landed soundlessly on the tiled floor. With one foot, he hit the flush on the toilet while he quickly leaned down and picked up the feather in two finger tips. Without hesitation, he dropped the thing, letting it slip away with the circling and spiraling water.
Right down the drain.
Still startled, he hugged his elbows as he looked back distrustfully towards the mirror over the sink. It was like any old mirror. Reflecting nothing but his round eyes and stupid regular face.
Slamming the door, he dashed out of the bathroom and into the room he shared with his brother. Dean wasn't in his bed yet due to the dinner ban being lifted, but Sam darted into it anyway, not caring if it was completely unauthorized. He burrowed down into the blankets and pulled them over his head. Next time Dean told him not to touch something?
Sam was going to listen.