Title: The Dope that we Smoke
Characters: Sam, Dean
Disclaimer: I don't own Supernatural except in my dreams. The title and the chapter names come from the lyrics of the song Mudhouse by Jason Mraz.
Warnings: Sam and Dean tend to swear and there is some violence and mild shmoop.
Word Count: 4,700
Summary: Sam and Dean are hunting a supernatural creature in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee. Unfortunately for Sam there's more than just the supernatural danger to be concerned about. Set during Season 1. hurt/delirious!Sam heroic/hurt!Dean
The Dope that we Smoke
Chapter 4 Quiet Type the Kind to Watch Out For
At least Sam thinks it might be raining. His skin prickles with the feel of chilly water trickling lightly along his arms and legs. But he's inside, so not raining then, just goosebumps teasing his clammy skin into hyper-sensitivity.
The thought of rain reminds him of his dry mouth and parched throat. He wonders how long it's been since he last had anything to drink. It's hard to judge due to the patches of time when he's lost, thick fog descending upon him and obscuring the here and now. He swipes his tongue across the roof of his mouth to generate some saliva, but his tongue feels shriveled and raw, like it's grating along sandpaper.
The large basement he's in is empty. The men who dragged him away from Dean, down the steps, and into this room are gone. They left as soon as they had arranged him on top of a bed, the kind commonly found in hospitals, and tightened restraints around his wrists and ankles. On the way out, one of them had mentioned a helicopter and something about tests first thing in the morning. He only caught snatches of the conversation, the majority obscured by his faltering awareness.
The bindings give a little at his half-hearted tugs, secure, but not inhumanly so. He lifts his head off the mattress and sees an almost surgical set-up. A white cloth-draped tray table beside his bed holds vials of unknown substances, bulging packets that might hold seeds or powder, needles, and gleaming sharp scalpels. Everything is laid out neatly in rows, OCD precise with corners squared off and each item the exact same distance apart. Sam has a hard time imagining any of the men he's met in this compound thus far having the patience or the organizational skills to arrange those items so neatly.
Medical monitoring equipment lines the walls, an EKG machine, a blood pressure cuff attached to a mobile stand, and many other hulking machines that Sam can't immediately identify. They're all unplugged at the moment, digital displays blank and quiet.
By turning his head to the right he can see another table. The display of drug paraphernalia clustered there sends his mind into a tail-spin of memories from his first fraternity party at Stanford. He had been lonely and desperate to fit in, excited by an invitation from one of his few acquaintances, another freshman in his psychology 101 class.
The party had been in full swing by the time he got there. As soon as he'd arrived a blue drink had been shoved into his hand. Dance music had been blaring from the stereo at an ear-splitting volume and the dance floor, the living room of the frat house with all of the furniture pushed out of the way, had been jammed with college kids jerking, bumping and grinding in a chaotic mix. Everywhere he looked there were people drinking, snorting and smoking everything imaginable.
It had all been a bit overwhelming. He had grown up knowing about things that most people would never find out about, yet he had led a sheltered and naïve life when it came to drugs and recreational substances. His Dad and Dean drank beer, sometimes hard liquor, and yeah, sometimes to excess, but they stayed strictly away from any mind altering drugs, needing to keep their wits about them and their minds sharp when on a hunt. High school parties hadn't really been an option for him since they had moved around from place to place so frequently, never giving him a chance to make friends or get invitations to...well, anything really. That frat party had been an eye opening experience.
He recognizes the long tube of a water pipe, a set of scales, syringes, and several prescription pill bottles as well as a baggy full of marijuana buds. Someone's ready for a good time.
His head thumps back down onto the bed, too heavy to hold up any longer. The ceiling undulates in a mesmerizing roll of white paint and industrial grade florescent lights. As he passively watches the lazy spin, he can hear the florescents buzzing. Instead of providing illumination, they seem to be sucking up all the available light. sucksucksuck. His vision dims, his eyes drift closed.
He floats with a swoop and a glide upward until he sees Dean below him. It's as though he's standing on a balcony overlooking the room where he and Dean were held captive earlier. Dean's still there, lying on his side with his arms tied behind his back. Blood soaks his hair, dribbles down his neck to puddle on the floor. Even though his eyes are closed and it's obvious he's unconscious, pain is evident in the pinch of his features, the lines drawn starkly around his mouth and eyes.
Sam is abruptly slammed back into his body, heart jack hammering wildly against his sternum.
Dean! What the hell was that!
Benjamin and Gideon choose that moment to enter the room from one of two doors to his left. He hadn't noticed either door in his earlier brief survey of his surroundings. Upon entering the room, the men carefully close the door behind them like they don't want him to see what's inside and walk purposefully toward him.
"Yer lookin' a little less loopy, boy. Now what can have caused 'at, I wonder?" Gideon looks a bit worried, his eyebrows crease, meeting in the middle of his forehead.
Sam doesn't mean to be so transparent, knows not to show all his cards in a hostage situation, but that...glimpse of his brother...he hesitates to call it a vision, has him freaked and he can't help blurting out, "Where's Dean? What have you done with him?"
His outburst brings a leer to Benjamin's bruised face. "Interesting...you're more concerned with your brother's fate than your own. I'll have to keep that in mind for later. For now, rest assured, he's safe enough, waiting for Mr. Adam to get here and ask him a few questions. Once the interview is over...well, I'm not sure what we'll do with him." Benjamin narrows his eyes, watching Sam intently for his reaction.
Even in his compromised mental state, Sam knows he has just played right into his captors' hands, given them the leverage they need to break him if they so choose. He wants to call for a do over, but no matter how much he wishes otherwise, the damage has been done and now there's no way to take it back, to un-say the words, or to rewind time. Dean will be the one to pay for his mistake. He can't let it come to that.
"What are you going to do to me?" Sam feels his lucidity beginning to slip away along with the thrumming anxiety brought on by seeing Dean bleeding and unconscious in one of the rooms on the level above.
His last ditch effort at deflection works, however, and Benjamin smiles, all teeth and malice. "Mr. Adam's helicopter will be landing on the rooftop pad in about ten minutes. You're his first order of business. He's been dying to meet you ever since we first told him about you're...mishap with Bubba."
"Blinky." Sam corrects, his mind already growing murky with the continued presence of venom in his bloodstream and the waning adrenaline.
Benjamin continues, ignoring the interruption. "Since you were kind enough to volunteer as a test subject already infected with our creation's venom, we're gonna see how you react to the venom in combination with other substances. It'll be a drug trial of sorts, only you'll be the sole participant. No one else was jumping up and down to join in the experiment it seems. I can't imagine why."
Although he fights the venom's hold, needs to stay in the here and now in order to take advantage of any opportunity to get to his brother, Sam's tenuous grip on reality flows inexorably away from him like the ocean tide. Benjamin's taunts glide past him without producing a ripple of concern. His limbs feel heavy and water logged, numb in a way that make them impossible to move, restraints or no restraints.
When Mr. Adam arrives ten minutes later, Sam can barely remember his own name, much less the reason for his restraints or the purpose for his new visitor.
The stranger, wearing a dark gray three piece suit, stands with his hands on his hips staring down at him with a pinched frown on his doughy face. His soft features mark him as a businessman, one not used to getting his hands dirty. "This is the boy infected with the venom? How can you tell?" He questions Benjamin and Gideon, looking over his shoulder at the two men who flank him on either side.
"The venom makes 'im compliant like, easy goin'. We could do anythin' to 'im and he'd just lie there and take it. Ain't 'at right, kid?" Gideon slaps Sam's cheek hard to prove his point.
His head rocks to the side and a moan escapes chapped lips.
"Perfect." The well-dressed man purrs. "Let's get started then."
Sam rolls his head until he finds Gideon's face again. "Water." He croaks softly, eyelids at half-mast.
"Oh, we gotcha somethin' much better 'n water comin' right up. Kin we start 'im off on somma Effriam's homemade whiskey, Mr. Adam? 'At stuff'll put hair on the boy's chest, sure 'nough." Gideon manages to simper up to Adam while bestowing a condescending sneer on Sam at the same time.
Eyebrows arch up as Adam ponders the request. "Hmmm, yes, alcohol would be a good starting point, commonplace enough to assume that one might mix it with a recreational drug such as we wish to manufacture from the venom. Very well, give him some of the whiskey."
Although Sam gathers from the hiss of conversation that he's going to be given something to drink, the what and why elude him. A part of his mind starts a warning hum of 'this is bad, this is wrong', but he's so thirsty and the hum gets pushed into the dark recesses of his brain where it fades out to an uneasy buzz.
Gideon is so excited he nearly skips into the second room off to his left. Once the door is open, Sam can see that the room contains a 55 gallon drum still complete with stovepipe and copper coils. It looks just like the one Hawkeye built in the old Mash re-runs he watches on late night TV when he can't get back to sleep after a nightmare. Glass bottles sit on shelves along all four walls, some full of an amber liquid, others empty. Gideon takes one of the full bottles off a shelf, holds it up to the florescent bulbs on the ceiling, and gazes at the liquid appreciatively.
"Why is he restrained if he is incapacitated? I thought you told me he's harmless." Adam glares suspiciously at Benjamin while tapping his pudgy fingers on the cloth of the table next to Sam's bed.
"He is, it's just a precaution, Sir." Benjamin's answer holds an odd mixture of respect and encouragement. It makes Sam think of a parent trying to bolster their child's courage.
"Take the bindings off him then and get him to sit up. I won't be able to judge the effects of the venom combinations with him lying down." While Adam gives his instructions, the genteel man takes baby steps backwards until he's as far away from Sam as its feasible to be and still have a good view of the proceedings. If he could get behind a plate glass wall and order his subordinates around through an intercom system, he probably would. "Leave the ankle bindings." He adds abruptly.
A stir of activity right by his side startles Sam briefly out of his hazy indifference and he swivels his head lethargically until he can see Benjamin removing the restraints from both wrists, leaning over to get to the one on the other side of the bed. The freedom means little to him, his arms barely under his control, too heavy to lift.
Moving his head causes the room to spin uncomfortably. The cotton batting muffling his thoughts also seems to coat the inside of his mouth.
"Water." He articulates carefully, hoping one of the three men with him in the room will understand him this time.
"I got yer water right here." Gideon snickers, holding a full cup of light brown liquid toward him.
Then Benjamin prods him into a slouching sit, forcing him to support himself by jabbing a finger into his sore ribs when he lists to the side and continuing to nudge and berate him relentlessly into lifting his leaden arm to take the proffered cup from Gideon. He drinks deeply and doesn't stop at the choking burn of the fluid in his raw throat, drains the entire cup gulp by noisy gulp. A flash of acidic warmth ignites in the pit of his empty stomach.
When he's done, he lets the cup drop from lax fingers. It comes to rest between his legs on the hospital bed. He blinks in drowsy contentment, staring into space, mouth hanging slightly open, oblivious to the three men watching him.
All movement ceases. The room quiets to the point where the proverbial pin could be heard dropping.
Nothing happens for long minutes. Adam redistributes his weight from one leg to the other, the cloth of his trousers rustles in the hush.
"Should I give 'im some more?" Gideon directs his question at Adam with a quirk of his head.
"Not yet." Adam replies speculatively, never taking his eyes from Sam. "These things have to be done carefully or we might miss something important."
The exchange between the two men penetrates his stupor and Sam is surprised by the sudden burst of clarity. Seconds later the world erupts around him in a riot of throbbing image and noise. The light from the florescents is too bright, the colors in the room are too sharp, the smallest sound is too loud. He slams his eyes shut, clamps his hands tightly over his ears, and rocks forward, hunching further into himself.
"Holy shit." Benjamin spits and jumps away from the bed, shocked by Sam's unexpected change from completely docile to frenetic motion. His hip knocks into the small tray table near the bed and it crashes to the ground, vials, scalpels, and packets clacking as they skitter across the floor.
Sam keens in misery, fists the hair on either side of his head, tucks in as close to his chest as he can get, trying to protect his eardrums from the auditory assault. Cackling and pointing at Benjamin, Gideon uncaringly adds to the chaotic jarring noise slicing through his skull.
"Interesting." Adam's clinically detached assessment stabs daggers into Sam's ears. "Ask him what it feels like."
Sam whimpers at the question, having heard it loud and clear even though it wasn't addressed to him. "Too loud." He moans, his voice like a claxon bell ringing in his head. "Too loud."
Without dropping the volume of his voice in deference to Sam's plight, Adam says, "Make him open his eyes. I want to know what he sees."
Embarrassed at being startled in front of his boss and being laughed at by Gideon, Benjamin takes his anger out on Sam. He strides forward, grabs his chin roughly in one hand, and forces his head up. "Open your eyes, punk." He grits through clenched jaw.
Sam does as he's told just to get everyone to stop talking and leave him alone. He needs a minute to adjust to his new reality, to check and see if his ears are bleeding. But he doesn't get the chance because as soon as his eyes are open, the entire room begins to whirl and strobe madly around him. The spastic collision of every known color, and some that Sam's never seen before, circles within his field of vision. Indigo is especially friendly. It keeps pulsing closer and closer until Sam is sure he can reach out and touch it. Before he can stop to think about what he's doing, he tentatively pokes a finger toward the color, disappointed when it recedes out of reach.
The florescent lights, that before seemed to be sucking the room dry and dark, are now excruciatingly bright. He takes a couple of deep breaths, willing his eyes to compensate for the over-exposure.
"Well...what do you see?" Impatience makes Adam address Sam directly for the first time since descending into the basement.
"It's...colorful." Sam gropes for words to describe the experience, comes up with nothing, wonders why he's giving these pricks any information at all. They're the ones doing this to him. They're the ones who created the Blink Bear. They're the ones who have Dean tied up and bleeding from a friggin' head wound upstairs.
His anger sharpens his focus. The wild whirl of color slows, the lights dim. The change is minute, but it's enough. Enough for him to take stock of the situation. Enough for him to take note of his position relative to his three captors and the stairs that lead to the room where Dean lies broken. Enough for him to acknowledge the holstered guns at Gideon and Benjamin's hips and the lack of a gun at Adam's. Enough for him to come up with a plan.
The plan is this – act much more impaired by the venom/alcohol combination than he actually is, lull the hicks into a false sense of security, mask his lethal intent, and strike at the first opportunity. Get to Dean and get them both the hell out of here.
He's already given a pretty good show and since his captors have no basis for comparison, it should be easy to make them think he's still out of his head. After all, he is still out of his head, just not as much as they believe. Benjamin even told Adam that he was harmless.
The trick is going to be in keeping this level of focus long enough to put his plan into action. He can already feel the insistent pull of the venom, trying to drag him back under. The cacophony of light, noise, and color are hard to ignore. Anger appears to be the key.
It's ironic that his anger is the only thing keeping him sane now after all those years before leaving for school when he was certain his anger was going to make him crazy. Frustration at feeling trapped in a life with no choices, jealous of a brother who embraced that life, thrived on it, resentment for a father who made all the rules. All of it churning inside him until he had to 'get out' 'get away', before he did something he would regret for the rest of his life. He loved his dad and his brother back then just as much as he loves them now, but he was afraid that if he stayed he would say something, do something, in anger that would hurt them irrevocably. If he only knew then what he knows now...
He rewinds his train of thought, thinks about the Blink Bear killing innocent hikers, thinks about Dean falling after receiving two harsh blows with the butt of a pistol to the back of his head, concussion, brain damage, lets the rage build in his gut.
Sam holds the anger in his heart and in his head, but doesn't let it touch his face, schools his expression into dumb wonder, and lets his gaze wander from color to color flickering in front of him. Any noise at all still grates within his ear canal, so no acting is required to flinch when Adam makes his next demand.
"Well, that was exciting. Let's try the marijuana next. It's also commonplace enough to be used in conjunction with other drugs. We need to know how they react together."
Quick as a wink, Gideon has the weed and bong prepped and ready to go. "You done this 'afore, boy?" He asks Sam, holding out the bong.
There's no way Sam's adding any new narcotics to the cocktail he already has going on. The venom and the alcohol are plenty to keep at bay, thank you very much. Anything else could tip him over the looming cliff and into oblivion.
Instead of flat out denial, Sam blinks groggily at Gideon, keeping up the facade of harmless doped-up kid.
The deception only lasts for so long though because when Gideon positions the bong over his mouth and Sam breaths through his nose, the smoke in the pipe doesn't go anywhere. It's pretty obvious he's not inhaling. There's nothing that Adam and his goons can do to make him inhale the smoke, so Gideon resorts to threats.
"If you don' start smokin' 'at weed, I'm gonna break yer fingers one by one."
It's an idle threat and they all know it. Breaking Sam's fingers, or anything else for that matter, sets them back days while they wait for him to recover. The information they get won't be accurate if Sam's in too much pain and they won't get anything from him if he passes out.
After a beat of silence, Benjamin's face lights up like a Christmas tree. "Wait a minute. His brother. We can't break this fella's fingers, but we can break his brother's fingers no problem. I have a feeling that'll be much more effective anyway."
Sam feels the heat of Benjamin's stare and works hard to keep the flicker of anger from reaching his eyes.
Turning away from him with a smirk that makes Sam think he may not have done such a great job of hiding is true feelings, Benjamin says, "Gideon, go tell Frank to take a break from preparing for the summoning and binding rituals and have him help you bring the tough guy down here."
It takes Dean several agonizing attempts to fight his way clear of the sticky morass of unconsciousness for longer than a few seconds. The first time, he never really makes it all the way to the surface. Eyelids flutter as he hovers so close before slipping down beneath the hard won layers once more. The second time, he breaks through, opens his eyes, and knows two things – something is wrong and he's alone. Those two thoughts follow him spiraling away into the depths of nothing. The third time, it's the panic that finally brings him all the way there.
Silence greets his straining ears, the only sounds – his shallow breathing and stuttering heartbeats. The echoing sense that he's alone, alone, alone, assails him again. And he hates it, hates coming to and not knowing what went wrong with no one there to explain things to him, ground him. He hates being hurt, the helpless feel of it, and he knows he's hurt even though the pain hasn't hit him yet. He can tell by the way his body doesn't want to respond, the stiffness of his joints, the way his heartbeats limp along and then scramble to catch up, the airy disassociated space inside his head. Unfortunately, he's dealt with it all before and he'll have deal with it now.
The awkward position he's in, lying on his side with his hands behind his back and is head canted at an extreme angle, isn't doing him any favors. Stealing himself to sit up, he tries bringing his hands in front to assist in the transition only to find that they're tied together.
Pain blossoms from his skull, tracing a vibrating path through his entire skeletal structure. A stomach-curdling ache starts in his jaw and ends in his fingers and toes. The power of it, hot and crushing, pulls a gasp from heaving lungs.
"Sam..." Longing overrides the knowledge that Sam's not there and his brother's name is torn from him, ripped from his lips like a prayer. Despair paralyzes him for a moment.
Sam's not here.
The pounding in his head halts all higher brain functions and he can't seem to remember what happened to him, why he's tied up, or even where he is, but his training kicks in anyway. It's the one thing he can always count on.
Eyes still closed, he concentrates internally, taking physical inventory. Everything aches in a dull 'run ragged' way, especially his shoulder, but the only alarming pain comes from the back of his head. His clothes are finally dry, stiff and scratchy from drying while he was still in them and that seems to be a clue. His clothes were wet because he wore them in the rain...rainforest...Smoky Mountains...Blink Bear...compound...hillbillies...pistol-w
His eyes pop open revealing a fog-shrouded room containing two of everything. Blurry double-vision, so it's a good bet that he has a concussion, as if the mind-numbing pain hadn't been a big enough tell.
Lips pursed together in a tight line, he tests the knot-tying skills of his captors. Not too bad actually, he won't be wriggling out of these ropes any time soon. There's always his knife though, hidden inside his boot, flush with his ankle. He ignores the screaming power drill gouging a hole into his head and contorts his body into a pretzel until his hand grasps the hilt of his knife, pulling it out of his boot in triumph.
It's slow going, cutting ropes around your wrists behind your back. Halfway through the first rope, he hears voices in the hallway outside his door. Muffling a few choice curses, Dean stashes the knife in the waistband of his jeans for easy access, flips his outer shirt over the bulge. There's no reason the pot-growing farmers should suspect him of having a knife since they've already searched him once.
The lock clicks open and in come hillbilly hick number one and hillbilly hick number two.
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