Title: What Does My Room Say About Me?
Disclaimer: Only the Winchesters aren’t mine.
Warnings: spoilers for pilot; pre-pilot
Point of view: third
Notes: part of my Dean canon
Point of view: third
Notes: part of my Dean canon
English IV Hour II
January 12, 1996
What Does My Room Say About Me?
My room tells
Soft blue walls—robin’s egg blue, Mary told him, Dean’ll love it, baby—
Dancing bears and prancing horses and birds flying—no trucks or cars, she gently demanded, My son won’t be vehicle-crazy (too late, he thought, he’s my son)
Yellow blankets, old and faded and soft—No, she told him, pulling him down for a kiss while Dean kicked in her womb, they’re perfect, baby.
Darker blue walls, small bed and fluffy pillows; yellow wallpaper with lions and tigers; legos and action figures littering the floor.
Books, old and tattered, haphazardly thrown around; blue blankets draping off the bed; window thrown open to let in the sun—
Do I get a brother soon, Mommy? asked every night.
Yes, baby, soon, she whispered and kissed him goodnight.
Stench of fire, memory of pain, It’ll be okay, Sammy.
Rough hotel blankets in succession; knives and guns; books and newspapers—don’t touch the weapons, Dean, and keep Sammy away from ‘em—hard pillows and little food. Clothes with holes and stained with flame—John, he heard her say, take better care of my boys. Give them a real home.
Two years in the same room—closest to home in a lifetime.
Cream walls and double bed, clothes spread all over and books scattered on the floor, interspersed with guns, knives, and their paraphernalia.
Flower wallpaper, put up before they came and not worth a fight; radio that always played hard rock ‘cept when little brother—Sammy, roommate—brought out the puppy eyes.
The room became home; he was finally comfortable there, and Dad said, Time to move on.
White walls stained with grime; old, dirty mattress; see-through blankets. Ragged dresser, tarnished dark by misuse and time; clothes spotted by blood and remains claim the floor, with knives and guns in their proper places.
These weapons are your life, Dean, Dad said. Treat them as you would yourself—or your brother.
Three years—from Sammy in kindergarten till Dean nearly died in the sinkhole—that room was nearly home—not quite, though. Home was Momma and Daddy and Sammy and Dean—without Momma, there was no home.
Five more years, never a room longer than six months. Sammy grew and Dean grew, but Dad stayed the same—hard and rough and more patient than a mountain. He rarely lost his temper, in the early years, up till Sammy hit thirteen and became Sam. And Dean would stand between them—even when he stormed away, let them fight it out, he still stood between then, begging them to stop because it killed him that they never could agree.
He and Sam(my) quit sharing rooms; Dean brought in his own income, hustling and petty thievery. They settled down for Dean’s senior year—Dad swore this room—light brown with dark green paper, ratty furniture, and old stains—would be the final one for a long time—Dean, I want you to have one normal year. Your—your mother would have wanted your senior year to be the best, stable. And, Dean—I swear it will be.
Dean always knew when Dad lied—Don’t worry, Santa’ll find us and come Christmas morning, Dad passed out on the couch, not a present in sight—but he also knew Dad always tried his best.
And Dean finally let down his guard, believed he’d found home at last, a life—school and hunting equally balanced—he could live happily for a long time.
The assignment nearly broke him. He thought long and hard and began a thousand times, in the car and the apartment, sitting in class, at lunch—he wrote pages and pages, but none of it felt right, so he crumpled each up, hid it in his room or threw it away.
For a week and a half, it consumed him, every waking thought.
And then Dad told him of a new hunt and Sam(my) balked and Dean had to referee and then he stormed out of the apartment, stalked through the night, wondering when life had gotten so damn hard.
His thoughts turned to the paper and he knew he wouldn’t(couldn’t) finish it, couldn’t turn it in.
It just hurt too much.
James Friedman flipped through the Room papers and felt disappointed when one name never popped up.
“Dean,” he called as his second hour filed out. The boy paused and glanced over his shoulder.
He had a black eye and split lip, and James had noticed the limp, the careful way Dean moved. “Yes, Mr. Friedman?” he asked.
“I noticed you didn’t turn in a paper,” James said, not accusing, but letting the disappointment show.
Something flickered in Dean’s hazel eyes; James couldn’t classify it—it wasn’t anger or hurt or anything he recognized—maybe a combination thereof. “I know,” Dean answered. “Sorry, Mr. Friedman—I just…” He looked away and ran his hand across his face. “I’ve had too many—I had too much else to do.” He met James’ eyes again. “I’m sorry.”
He wasn’t asking forgiveness and he clearly thought he didn’t need it, but James could also see the regret. Dean loved to write, loved to please—James expected abuse, but knew Dean would never say so. “There’s another assignment coming up,” he said, in place of demands about Dean’s home life, in place of offering help Dean would never accept in any lifetime. “It won’t make up for the paper, but it could balance it out.”
Dean smiled, a quick, bright grin that lit up the room. “See you later, Mr. Friedman.” He exited, leaving James to tests and papers and lesson plans.
James sighed. That paper could have told him so much of Dean.
My room tells nothing of me. The walls are bare, without adornment—I’ve never had the time to put up posters, to hang pictures; even the wallpaper isn’t mine.
Clothes are scattered about; all three of us—Dad and Sam and me—are too busy, usually, to keep up with the chores. Even when someone does it, unless it’s me it’s done wrong.
You know what? My room says nothing of me, Mr. Friedman, and I have more important things to do. So I’ll just tear up this paper, throw it in the garbage, and go on. There’s a hunt waiting, and Dad needs supper, and someone needs to check Sam’s homework.
Mom’s dead. It’s up to me.