Authors shangrilada familybizness
Warnings: rape, alcoholism, physical abuse, drug use, gratuitous and likely often incorrect medical information, torture, foul language, excessive hilarity
Authors' Note: CurtainFic
The thing about Hell is that nobody tells you what happens after (until the Winchesters, no one knew there was an after).
After Dean grabs his little brother--broken lungs, broken mind, broken soul and all--from the Cage, they're unceremoniously forced into retirement. This is great for Sam, who somehow, to Dean's amazement, manages to find really innocent, genuine pleasure in waffles, cooking show marathons, and curling up with his nebulizer at the end of the day, but metaphorical (everything is metaphorical now) hell for Dean. Without hunting, he's tense, miserable, and drinking himself into blackouts or rages, both of which have him waking up with the itching, biting feeling that he's doing Sam more harm than good.
Sam's struggling to breathe through nightmare after nightmare until Dean finds him Christa, a therapist who's damn good at what she does, and what she does expands from helping Sam to helping Sam while comforting Dean, and then to helping Sam while comforting Dean and then removing Dean's clothes. So Sam's pretty content, seeing two of his favorite people (God, he loves Christa and God God God he loves when Dean smiles) all over each other, and that's not exactly hindered by Christa's daughter who gives him his meds and he swears sees down to his damn (maybe not so broken) soul, and then there's that angel in the trench coat who holds him at night and lets him cry in Enochian and gives Sam soft kisses down his jawline.
Everything's so much better than it should be, and then one day Sam wakes up and his heart doesn't work.
The thing about Hell is that nobody tells you what happens after.
There are things it can do to a body.
Things it can shut down.