Series: Bringing Up Baby (3/?)
Word Count: ~3100
Characters/Pairing: implied Sam/Dean, Bobby
Summary: In which hunting and baby-rearing require the boys to call for backup.
Warnings: Brief violence.
Sam and Dean fall into a routine—more of a system, really—of balancing hunts with taking care of Mary. They take turns getting up with her during the night when she wakes up, which isn’t often, and whoever doesn’t get up during the night changes her diaper and feeds her in the morning. They take turns giving her baths, getting her dressed, washing her mini-load of laundry. Sam is usually the one to play with her while Dean cleans weapons or goes on hunts, but sometimes when Sam needs to blow off some steam with a hunt, he comes home to find Dean curled up with Mary on the bed, softly singing his favorite rock songs in her ear while she sleeps. It’s all working out pretty well, until it isn’t.
Sam is sitting on the bed, leaning over Mary and flapping the wings on the colorful stuffed bird that they’d picked up at a rest stop a few states back, when he hears a heavy thud against the door of the motel room. He immediately reaches for the knife on the bed table and moves to stand in front of the bed, putting himself between Mary and the door, when he hears the key scrape against the door until it clicks in the lock. The door swings open, practically dragging Dean, who staggers and drops to one knee when he loses the solid support of the door, with it. Sam drops his knife to the floor, glances back at Mary, and then runs to Dean. He kneels down next to his brother, kicking the door shut with his foot.
“Dean, what the hell happened?” Dean had gone to take care of a werewolf, one that had been tracked by another hunter who had to be out of town during this month’s full moon. It was supposed to be quick and easy, and now Dean is bleeding on the motel floor, his skin cold and clammy, and shit Mary’s starting to cry.
“The kid was only 18, and the—the parents knew,” Dean pants. “Dad met me outside with a shotgun, got a…few shots in before I could even open my mouth.”
Sam can see blood seeping through the denim of Dean’s pants, and Dean is pressing against his stomach, and Sam feels sick when he sees the blood on Dean’s hands, the contrast against his pale skin so extreme the blood almost looks black. Mary is starting to scream up on the bed, and Dean, jaw clenched, throws a panicked glance towards the bed before fixing his eyes on Sam’s again. Sam follows Dean’s gaze while he strips off his own shirt, tearing off a piece of fabric to hold against Dean’s leg.
“Hey, hey, Dean, Mary’s fine, okay? I think she’s just scared, but she’s okay. I need you to focus. Do you think you need to go to the hospital? Or is this something I can fix up here?”
Sam watches Dean swallow a few times before he can open his mouth to answer, and when he does, Sam knows it’s serious, because he can count the times he’s heard those words come out of Dean’s mouth on one hand. “Yeah, I think.” Heavy breathing. “I think I need a hospital.”
“Okay. Okay.” Sam stands up, feeling panic tight in his chest at the thought of getting Dean into the car and getting Mary into the car and getting into the hospital, and not killing either of them. “Dean, hold this on your leg, okay?” Sam grabs Dean’s free hand, the one that he’s using to brace himself against the floor, and presses it against the cloth on his leg. Dean groans and shuts his eyes against the pain, and Sam runs to Mary, whose screams are getting louder and louder, and whose face is redder than he’s ever seen it.
“Shhh, shhh, Mary, it’s okay.” Sam picks her up and holds her tight against his chest the way she likes when she’s upset, but she
just squirms and cries even louder. It takes him a few minutes longer than it usually does to strap her into her carrier. When he finally gets her in, he grabs the keys out of the doorknob on his way to the parking lot, trying to ignore the way Dean’s breathing rasps. He settles the carrier into the back seat of the Impala and snaps it into place so it won’t slide around. He locks the doors and runs backs to the room, looking over his shoulder every few minutes to make sure no one is going to bother Mary.
“Hey, Dean, can you sit up for me, man? Just for a minute, and then you’ll be in the Impala and can pass out.”
“Not gonna…pass out,” Dean grunts, but he barely manages to hold back a pained whine while Sam guides him into a sitting position and then leverages him to his feet. By the time they reach the Impala, Dean is leaning more against Sam than he is holding himself up and walking, and Sam folds him into the passenger seat. He sprints around the hood and plops into the driver’s seat, turning the keys in the ignition and slamming against the accelerator as soon as the engine turns. The fact that Dean says nothing about that move is perhaps the most worrying thing about the night thus far.
Halfway to the hospital and Dean is barely conscious, even with Mary seemingly determined to reach previously unheard of decibels in the back seat. Sam tries to comfort Mary while keeping track of Dean’s pulse and breathing, and keeping them on the road, but by the time he pulls up in front of Emergency, Sam is ready to start screaming right along with her. He puts the car into park and is already trying to get Dean out of the car when a nurse comes out to help. He gives her the name on Dean’s current insurance card, tells her Dean’s blood type, and watches her call for a gurney, watches them hoist Dean’s body onto it, watches him grab out blindly when he’s already too far away for Sam to reach. The nurse tells him to pull the car into parking, and that she’ll meet him in the emergency room.
Two hours later, Sam is sitting in the waiting room with Mary sleeping in his lap, who finally exhausted herself about an hour and a half earlier. Sam is clutching his phone, staring as the digital numbers keep ticking by, waiting for the phone to ring and signal Bobby’s arrival. When the doctors had taken Dean into emergency surgery, Sam had called Bobby in a moment of desperation. Bobby had said he was just a state over, coming out of a hunt, and would be there as soon as he could.
Which gives Sam something to worry about other than the fact that Dean is lying on an operating table right now, with doctors cutting him open and trying to stabilize him. Sam is now able to stress over the fact that he has to explain to Bobby that he and Dean now have a daughter of sorts—and doesn’t that word send fifty different emotions swimming through his bloodstream all at once—that they’d conveniently forgotten to mention in the past couple months.
Neither Sam nor Dean really knows if Bobby’s aware of the…unique nature of their relationship, but if he does, he isn’t saying anything, doesn’t treat them any differently than he ever has, never seems to give a second thought to their physical closeness—and neither of the brothers are really willing to bring it up with him either way. Sam knows, though, that news of a baby probably won’t be taken quite so smoothly.
Sam jumps a little when his phone finally does ring, and he shifts Mary’s weight against one arm so he can bring the phone to his ear. “Bobby?”
“Yeah, I’m in the parking lot, just got here. Where are ya?”
“Um,” Sam looks around. “I’m in a waiting area outside of O.R. 2?”
“Okay. I’ll be there in five.”
Sam hangs up and looks down at Mary, running a hand lightly over her fuzzy blonde hair. She isn’t sleeping as deeply anymore, wrinkling up her nose and moving her arms a bit. He’ll probably have to ask a nurse if he can get a bottle, soon.
When Sam looks up again, he sees the familiar plaid and cap walking down the hall, Bobby’s strides purposeful and efficient. Sam stands up and Bobby immediately makes eye contact, his pace picking up just a little. He almost looks like he’s going to reach for a hug when he’s right in front of Sam, but then he sees the baby in Sam’s arms and stops short with a narrow-eyed look.
“Sam, it’s good to see ya, boy.”
“Yeah, you too, Bobby,” Sam answers earnestly. “Thanks for getting here on such short notice.”
“Yeah, well, you two idjits tend to do stupid things when I’m not around to stop them, so I figured getting here now would save a lot of clean-up later.” Bobby pauses, gestures towards Mary. “Speaking of…”
Sam shifts his weight on his feet, feeling shier than he has in years. “This is our—this is Mary. We’re taking care of her.”
Bobby looks at Mary, dressed in her PRINCESS tee-shirt and lime green pants, and then back up at Sam, his expression unreadable. “How the hell did you get yourselves into this mess?
“Hey,” Sam starts defensively, “Mary’s not a mess, okay? She’s a great baby.” We love her.
“Okay, sorry,” Bobby says, holding his hands out in front of him. “How did you…get her?”
“We found her on a hunt. She was in a cardboard box in the basement of this abandoned house that a lot of teenagers hang out in.
We think her mom was probably a teen, was scared and didn’t know what to do, and left her there.”
Bobby breathes out slowly, through his teeth. “Didn’t you think about giving her to the police or somethin’?”
“Come on, Bobby. If we did that, who knows where she’d have ended up? I mean, Dean and I—it’s not perfect, but she has what she needs and she’s got people who—she’s got a family where she’s wanted, you know?”
Bobby makes a face that Sam can’t figure out if it meant he agreed or not, but before he can say anything else, a nurse walks into the waiting room.
“Family of Carl Roberts?”
Remembering Dean’s alias, Sam’s attention snaps over to her, and she walks towards him so she won’t have to shout over the other people waiting in the room.
“You’re Carl’s brother, right?”
“Yeah,” Sam nods. “Is he alright?”
“Carl’s out of surgery, we have him in a room. If you want to come with me, I’ll show you where he is, and the doctor will be in shortly to talk to you both.”
“Yeah, okay. Just give me a second.”
The nurse nods and walks away to stand by the entrance of the waiting room, giving Sam and Bobby privacy.
“Hey, Bobby, could you—” Sam holds Mary out to him, and almost laughs when he notices an apprehension in Bobby’s eyes that he’d never once seen while taking out demons or going after ghosts. “Relax, Bobby, you’re not going to break her. Besides, she’s sleeping. You’ll be fine.”
Bobby holds out his arms, his face skeptical, and Sam hands Mary over. Bobby cautiously moves one of his arms so that Mary’s body is better supported, and his eyes widen when she cuddles against his stomach a little.
Sam laughs. “See? She likes you.”
Sam follows the nurse through what even he finds to be a ridiculously complicated route of hallways and turns, before she stops outside a door and peeks through.
“Your brother’s in a double room, but no one else is in it, yet. I’ll let you go on and see him, and the doctor will be here in a few minutes, okay?”
Sam thanks her and pushes open the door. Dean is lying in the far bed, dressed in a white hospital shirt that looks far too similar to what he’d been put in after the accident with Dad. This time, though, Dean’s eyes are open, and they turn to look at Sam when he enters, a little glazed and bleary, but aware enough.
“Hey, Dean,” Sam says quietly as he approaches the bed. He glances over his shoulder to make sure the doctor isn’t going to come in before leaning over the bed and pressing a kiss against Dean’s dry lips. “How’re you doing?”
“’Mmmkay,” Dean answers. His voice is still thick and slow, and Sam figures he’s just been woken up. Dean looks at Sam for a minute, his forehead wrinkling. “Mary?”
Sam smiles down at his brother, smoothes his hand over Dean’s shoulder. “Mary’s fine. She’s just in the waiting room with Bobby.”
At Dean’s questioning look, Sam continues. “I called Bobby after we got here, and they took you to surgery. How much do you remember about what happened?”
Dean thinks for a minute. “Remember gettin’ shot. Comin’ here. Don’ feel much right now.”
“Good, that’s good. You had surgery, but I don’t know much else yet either.” Sam spends another couple minutes filling Dean in on Mary—she’s still sleeping, hasn’t had her bottle yet—when there’s a brief knock at the door and a silver-haired doctor walks through.
“Hello, Mr. Roberts. Mr. Roberts.” He holds out a hand to Sam, and settles in beside him next to Dean’s bed. “I’m Dr. Sanchez, I was the doctor overseeing your surgery.”
Sam nods and sits down in the chair next to the bed, readying himself to take in the doctor’s words and instructions.
“Good news, first: The surgery went very well, Mr. Roberts. We were able to get out both bullets, and the bullet to the abdomen didn’t rupture any important organs—very lucky. Slightly less good news: The bullet in your thigh, however, hit a major artery and damaged some nerves. We were able to repair the artery, but I’m going to have to write you a prescription for physical therapy to help with range of movement and muscle control in your leg. And I want you off that leg for at least three weeks; I can write you a letter for your employer, if you need.”
Sam shakes his head. “We’re self-employed, but thank you.”
Dr. Sanchez smiles. “Absolutely. I’ll leave you to rest now, but if you need anything just push the call button, and one of the nurses will get me if you have any more questions. We’re going to keep you here for a couple nights, monitor you for infection and any bleeding we may have missed, but you should be good to go by the weekend.”
“Thank you,” Sam says again. Dr. Sanchez nods, puts his hand on Dean’s good leg with a rallying pat, and leaves the room.
“Well, this sucks,” Dean complains. He’s far enough out of the daze of anesthesia to sound sulky and put-out.
“Could have been worse,” Sam counters. Dean shrugs, not looking at him, and Sam leans over onto the bed, one hand resting idly on Dean’s arm. “I’m sure Bobby will let us stay with him while you’re getting better. And it might be good for Mary, not having to move around so much for a while.”
Again Dean shrugs, but at the mention of Mary his face softens and the annoyed set of his mouth twists up into the hint of a smile. “Yeah, I guess.”
Fifteen minutes later, a different nurse comes into the room and tells Sam that he has to leave for the night, but that visiting hours start up again at 10 the next morning. She hovers by the bed while Sam says a quick goodbye to Dean, telling him he’ll be back with both Mary and Bobby first thing in the morning, and then he leaves with a soft squeeze of the hand.
Sam does his best to backtrack through the hallways, but it gets easier to follow when he hears the shrill sound of Mary crying.
When he gets closer, he can hear Bobby, too—clearly flustered, and a little panicked—trying to calm her down.
“Hey, kid, quiet down okay? People are going to think I’m trying to steal you. Hey, hey, that’s not quieter—don’t worry, Sam’s gonna be back soon.”
Sam rounds the corner to see Bobby pacing in front of a row of chairs, Mary in his arms, red-faced and squirming. An older woman is eyeing him suspiciously, and another middle-aged man looks annoyed with the entire situation. When Bobby looks up and sees Sam, he walks towards him with more speed than Sam thought Bobby was capable of.
“Oh, thank the heavens,” Bobby grumbles, holding Mary out to Sam. “I think that lady was about to call the cops on me.”
Sam laughs and cuddles Mary to his chest, gently rubbing a finger across her cheek to soothe her. After a minute, she isn’t squirming as much, and her cries have lost most of their volume. Bobby watches with a critical eye, fascinated.
“You’re real good with her,” he says.
Sam beams at Bobby, and the older hunter shakes his head with a chuckle. “Thanks. You’ll get used to it, it’s not that hard. She’s probably just hungry, is all. Maybe a little spooked waking up in a strange place with a strange person.”
They both sit down in the chairs, Bobby watching as Sam tries to coax a giggle out of Mary with light tickles. “How’s Dean?”
“Lucky,” Sam answers. “He’s gonna be able to leave here in a couple days, as long as nothing goes wrong. The doctor wants him off his leg and wants him to go to physical therapy for the leg—damaged some nerves and muscle.”
“Well, you boys know you’re always welcome at my place.” Bobby looks down at Mary. “The three of you, I guess.”
“Thanks, Bobby. We’ll probably take you up on that. Hey, can you hold Mary for a minute? I’m gonna go try to find a bottle for her.” He stands up and puts Mary back in Bobby’s arms, laughing all the way down the hall at Bobby’s shocked protest and thinking of how amusing they next few weeks are going to be.