[identity profile] ll-cool-cj.livejournal.com posting in [community profile] remix_redux
Title: Everything Changes (No time Left To Stall Remix)
Author: [livejournal.com profile] unperfectwolf
Summary: For the first time in his life, Sam's not sure how things are going to work out, if Dean will still be there for him in the end.
Fandom: Supernatural
Characters: Sam Winchester, Dean Winchester
Rating: PG
Disclaimer: Not mine!
Original story: Everything Matters by [livejournal.com profile] maharetr
Notes: Thanks to my girl for all the help with this.

Sitting on the bed and staring down at the letter in his hands isn't going to make it any easier, and Sam knows it. He knows it, and yet he still can't make himself get up off of the bed and go out into the room where Dean is cleaning the weapons. He unfolds it again, reading the first few lines, just to be sure, but they're still the same. He still accepted Stanford's offer, and he's still going to be going there on a full ride in the fall.

Stanford was the one he accepted, but Cornell, UCLA, Columbia, NYU, Yale, Brown, Princeton—they had all accepted him, too. Only one or two of the schools he'd applied for hadn't. It had been a hard choice, picking which one he was going to go to. In the end, though, Stanford had offered a full ride, and when he'd contacted Student Services, they'd started looking into an on-campus job for him.

He looks up, stares at the door, and wonders how it came down to being afraid to tell anyone about this. He hasn't said anything about any of the letters to anyone—not his friends, not the school counselors, not a teacher, not anyone. He's not exactly afraid to tell the other kids. He knows if he told them the scholarships he got offered, they'd be impressed, but the problem is that they'd tell other people. Sam knows that his brother or father would find out somehow, and he is afraid of that.

Eventually, he makes himself get up and walks to the door. He pauses there, staring at the doorknob like he's forgotten how to use it. It's almost as if his eyes aren't really seeing what's in front of him, and for the first time in his life, Sam's not sure how things are going to work out, if Dean will still be there for him in the end. He doesn't know what's going to happen or how it is going to happen, and he can feel the tight knot of fear curling in his stomach.

Finally, though, he makes himself open the door and walk the few steps it takes to get to the table where Dean is cleaning the guns. He stands there, rocking from foot to foot, biting his lip and waiting. It's not that he doesn't want to interrupt Dean, because he hasn't ever had qualms about that, but every second he isn't telling Dean is another one that things are still the same.

He doesn't really want things to stay the same. It's the reason he'd applied to all the colleges, the reason he'd mowed lawns and washed cars and walked dogs for months to save up for application fees, and the reason he'd hustled a card game every night for a month to come up with the acceptance fee, one of the few costs not covered under "full ride."

But for all he doesn't want things to stay the same, he doesn't want them to change either. He still wants to be Dean's little brother—to know that Dean's always there for him, to be able to turn around and find Dean nodding to him, to know that Dean's making sure his back is covered.

In a fit of bravery, Sam clears his throat. Dean looks up, raises an eyebrow, then raises the other when Sam shifts his grip on the letter. "I, um, I wanted to talk…to tell you, before I told Dad."

Dean smiles at that, but it's a false smile, overly bright used to cover a frown. "Yeah, because things starting out like that always end well."

Sam wants to cringe at that, and he knows it must show because Dean puts the gun he was cleaning down and nods to the chair across from him. When Sam doesn't say anything, Dean frowns. "Spit it out."

"I…" Sam starts, but doesn't know how to go on. He's pictured this in his head for months now, knew every word he wanted to say, and now he doesn't have any of them.

"What, you've lost your 4.0 GPA?" Dean asks jokingly as he reaches for the letter. Sam lets him take it, smiling a little because he can't not smile at Dean's lame jokes. He's quiet, though, letting his brother read the letter and watching him as understanding dawns in his eyes. "Well, shit," Dean says, dropping the letter to the table after having read it a few times. Sam grabs it and tucks it into his jeans.

"I got a scholarship," Sam tells him softly. "A full ride."

"A scholarship," Dean repeats. "When the hell were you finding the time to make applications? You didn't just apply to Stanford, did you?"

"No, I… I applied to a lot of places; did it in study hall, mostly." Sam doesn't tell him about all the times he went to the library to study after school but instead was filling them out, typing up the letters to go with them.

"Any of these other places offer?"

"Yeah…" He reaches out and traces the barrel of the Beretta with a fingertip, not looking at Dean. It's too hard. "Most of them."

"This scholarship?" Dean asks, his voice tight. "Is it still a 'we would like to offer you?', or is it a 'thank you for accepting?'"

"The latter," Sam forces out, barely able to form the words. He doesn't want this to hurt so much, but he doesn't know how to do that.

"Ah," Dean tells him, and Sam can see him swallow. Dean picks up the cleaning brush, just for a moment, but Sam can see the way it shakes, the way that Dean can't hold them steady, and he has to choke down a sob.

"This is going to kill Dad," Dean says, after a pause. Like Sam didn't already know. Like he hadn't been thinking about that for the last six months.

"I'm sorry," he whispers. "Dean, I'm so sorry."

"Yeah, well, I can't say I didn't expect it, you big geek." Dean smiles at him, and something in Sam loosens and lets him grin back, relieved. He starts talking, telling Dean about the scholarship, about the job the school found for him, about where he'll live. He tells him the reason he worked all those jobs, where all that money went, now that he knows Dean's okay with it, and Dean lets him.

In the back of his mind, Sam knows this isn't over, and that he still has to face his dad. Dean's on his side now, though, and for as long as Sam's been able to remember, that's all that matters.

(no subject)

Date: 2007-04-23 04:23 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] maharetr.livejournal.com
Oh, thank you!

I like the idea that the reason Sam's so hesitant about telling Dean isn't just "everything's going to change" but also that for the first time ever he has no idea if Dean's going to have his back.

Again, thank you.

(no subject)

Date: 2007-05-09 06:56 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] unperfectwolf.livejournal.com
Heeee. I am so glad you liked this. I had actually read this before, loved the fic, and was really excited to write this.

(no subject)

Date: 2007-04-25 04:07 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lilacsigil.livejournal.com
A great remix, and it's tragic to see from either POV, how Sam doesn't understand that he not only leaving Dean, too, but making Dean complicit in his leaving.

(no subject)

Date: 2007-05-09 06:56 pm (UTC)

(no subject)

Date: 2007-04-26 02:53 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lastscorpion.livejournal.com
What a perfect last line! I really like this one.

(no subject)

Date: 2007-05-09 06:57 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] unperfectwolf.livejournal.com
Aww, thanks. I'm glad you like it, that it worked, that I didn't completely screw the original fic over.


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May 2007

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