And the winning story, with 25 out of the possible 100 votes (it was a very close poll!), is…
A World of Secrets!
After being attacked, Sam wakes up in a dark place, surrounded by strangers. He escapes them only to find that his life won’t be going back to normal any time soon…
This marks the beginning of a new AU, Brothers Unexpected! Where Sam is separated from Dean, but not from humanity, despite his new curse.
The blue-eyed man brushed Sam’s messy hair back. “My name’s Walt, and this is Mallory,” he introduced, his voice remaining level. “A few days ago, you and your brother got attacked. Do you remember that?”
Sam nodded mutely.
“That lady… the w-itch…” Walt was uncertain as he enunciated the word as though he’d never said it before. “She hit you with something. Some… spell. After it was cast, your brother couldn’t see you.”
Walt swallowed thickly. “We got you out before you got hurt more… but Sam… your family. They’re gone. The witch ran and they chased her.”
Sam’s eyes started to spill over. “N…no,” he mumbled. “Dean wouldn’t leave me. They wouldn’t abandon me!” By the end, he was shouting, his thin voice going up an octave in his panic. The memories in his mind clamored for attention. They overlapped and caused his breath to hitch.
Both Walt and Mallory flinched at the sound of his shout, eyes nervously flashing to their ceiling. Mallory put a delicate hand on Sam’s shoulder. “Sam, they never wanted to,” she said in her lyrical voice. “They thought the witch killed you and just wanted to…” She trailed off, her eyebrows furrowing uncertainly.
“She cursed you, Sam,” Walt cut in gruffly. “Everyone you knew is a giant. That’s why they didn’t see you and that’s why we had to get you out of there. They’re dangerous.”
A silence stretched out between them. Sam’s hand started to shake, more of the cup crumpling inwards as a tear slid down his cheek. “G-giants?” he asked timidly.
Something in his mind clicked before Walt could get out another word. “No! ” Sam stated firmly. “Dean’s not… Dean would never…” His words jumbled and he started to hyperventilate.
Sam shoved the covers off. His water splashed out of the deformed cup. Droplets of water spilled onto the wooden flooring.
Hot. He was too hot.
The world was too cold but he was too hot.
Walt just barely managed to catch the metal cup as it fell, but it was too late.
Sam stumbled out of the bed… nest… fabric. He almost fell over to dodge a well-meaning grab from Mallory, her face covered with sympathy. Sam squirmed between the two people that had saved his life, his desperation giving him energy to escape.
He needed to go. Dean was out there, he had to be.
Sam just had to find him.
Shoving the fabric draped over the doorframe, Sam ignored the cries of alarm that came from his former room. His eyes darted around the new room, and he quailed at the sight of a penny casually kicked against the side of the wall.
It was large enough to serve as a dinner plate.
No, they’re making it up. They’re lying, they have to be!
As soon as he saw another doorframe, Sam ran for it. He had to get out before they grabbed him and put him back in bed. There might not be another chance for escape. Dean always told him to watch out for himself. A hand brushed reflexively against the knife tucked away in his soft tan jacket and Sam prayed he never had to use it.
There was a block in front of the door. It was heavy, but Sam shoved it to the side. The adrenaline filling him made his hands shaky, but it gave him energy he could draw on. He needed to get away, he needed to escape.
A dark passageway arched overhead. The panic that Sam was drowning in refused to let him really see it. He couldn’t make out the cobwebs that lurked in the unreachable corners. The nails in the wooden walls were bigger than his hand but his eyes just brushed over them. He needed to run.
And so he ran.
Wind whipped Sam’s hair into a frenzy. In the distance, the sound of boots came. He was being followed. Panic lent speed to his strides, and Sam pushed himself like he’d never pushed himself before. It was a race. He needed to find a way out of this dark world before that Walt could catch him. It was as simple as that.
Sam’s eyes flashed from side to side as he searched for a way out. The dark walls were dusty, but footprints could be made out in the thick dust. Sam set himself to following them, driven by desperation. He was only ten, and his legs weren’t as long as Walt’s. If it took him too long to find help, he’d lose the race.
“Sam! Wait up, please! You don’t understand!”
Sam pushed the voice out of his mind and ran even faster, if that was possible. A wood splinter jutted out, nearly tripping the young kid up, but he only stumbled, scraping one hand against the ground. The skin was raw and red as he forced himself to run again.
He spotted a light in the distance, and a tiny bubble of hope filled his chest.
A way out.
There was another shout, but Sam didn’t even hear it this time. The wall gave way to an opening where the light was, and Sam felt triumph fill his chest as it turned out to be warm motel room light. He was safe. He could just walk out the door and go search for…
Any thought he had in mind trailed off as Sam skid to a halt.
Something was more than wrong. The room was distorted, the beds and walls arching up over his head by what seemed like miles. He’d run right past the gigantic nightstand, thinking it was just another hallway, leaving him exposed in the center of the floor.
Sam froze, his entire body filling with fear as he realized that Walt may have been telling him the truth.
Oh my gosh, that’s great! Looks like I shouldn’t be tagging things after a long, exhausting day of work! (This is why I usually do my blog upkeep on weekends, but everyone’s so into the guessing game, I can’t leave ya’ll hanging…)
However it happened, you earned a sneak peek of A World of Secrets! Which Jacob and his family just stumbled into!
If Sam could inch away from the two giants the pocket concealed him from, he would. The stern tone of voice Jacob’s mom had taken on was very familiar, and Sam couldn’t stifle an involuntary yelp of surprise. He heard it from his dad almost constantly. Dean was the patient teacher, John was the stern drill sergeant.
They were mad.
Sam put a hand on the hilt of his knife, drawing strength from the gift Dean had given him. Please don’t hurt me.
Jacob heard Sam’s quiet noise, and thought back to moments ago when the other kid worried Jacob’s parents would be mad at him. He was scared of them. Telling mama and papa about him would be breaking a promise and would probably make him cry. Jacob didn’t want to do either of those things.
He also didn’t want to keep lying. He was supposed to listen to them when they told him to do something. Jacob’s toy trucks fell to the floor and he pressed his hands against the wall behind him while the conflict practically dug into him. What was he to do?
“I don’ … don’t wanna be mean,” he finally murmured lamely, hanging his head but still peeking at his mother and father. His mouth was angled in a frown and his eyes stung.
“Hey, Jake, kiddo,” his father said quietly, stepping around his wife with care that didn’t seem to fit his huge frame. He stooped and braced his hands on his knees, peering at him with a serious but kind look. “You’re not in trouble, okay? I don’t know what got you so worried, but we do need to know if you’re hiding something from us, especially if it’s alive. Okay?”
Jacob stuck out his lower lip in a pout while he let his father’s low rumble of a voice sink in. He knew they would come and check his pockets if he didn’t give in. He thought he might have a chance at avoiding some trouble if he complied, and after a second his hands moved hesitantly to his pocket where he knew Sam was curled up in fear.
Now my new friend is gonna hate me, he thought sadly as he reached into the pocket and scooped his fingers under the small form to lift him out.