Author: Regala Electra
Warnings: language, sexual content
Pairing: oblique references to Dean/Female, Dean/Male
Summary: Two times that Dean Winchester celebrated the beginning of the second millennium (2000 & 2001). Dean refuses to have this New Year’s Eve turn out to be like last year, getting drunk by his lonesome and turning into a friggin’ one man pity party.
Word Count: 2,515
Author’s Notes: In theory, this story is Gen but in reality there are some references het & slash mixed in with pre-Wincest undertones. Title taken from Twentieth Century Boy by T-Rex.
January 1st, 2000
Midnight’s come and gone but he’s still awake, drinking crap beer, because this is supposed to be a Big Moment. He’s not celebrating the arrival of a new millennium, of having to scribble down ‘00 when marking the year’s date, nope, what he’s celebrating is the end of that freakin’ Y2K news story. The world hasn’t ended and Dean’s glad about that. For the time being.
He knows that he’ll be pissed later on, in the late morning (or God willing, the early afternoon, depends on when Dad comes back and hauls his ass out of bed), when he’s got a raging hangover (Jesus, was this stuff swilled in someone’s mouth before they bottled it?) and the realization that they’ve wasted a hell of a lot of time chasing after end of the world prophecies. Just in case this is the Big One and there actually is a freakin' God ready to close curtain before the show's ready to end.
Dean will be twenty-one in a couple more weeks and he can get a real license with his real age on it if he wants to, even though he’ll have to stick with the fake licenses most of the time. There’s his alter ego, James Page, who has racked up a hell of a lot of speeding tickets when Dean had been fifteen and stupid and James (Jimmy to his friends) had claimed to be twenty-three (and okay, he was kind of stupid too). I look young for my age? Well thank you, Officer, you’ve just made my day.
Dean had smiled back then, letting his arrogance belie his young face and the cops were way too happy to write up a hefty ticket than give a shit that he was carrying a beauty of a fake license.
Enough of this beer. It’s making him stupid and melancholy. Next thing he’s gonna do will amount to moping: take out the few photos they have of them as kids (or worse, that photo of Dad and Mom) and then get really pathetic. He has to shoot this bleakness right in its bastard heart. Cuts with a quickness to a favorite pastime of his: annoy Sam.
Dean can be real quiet when he wants to, even when he's had a few too many, so he makes it up the rickety stairs okay. He manages to open the door without making a creak. God bless WD-40.
“Saaaaaam. Sammy? You up?”
The noise that Sam offers as an answer is the standard sleeper’s grunt of fake alertness, so Dean moves onto the next step.
This involves bouncing up and down on Sam's lumpy mattress. He doesn’t have to care about making noise ‘cause Dad’s still stuck out on a hunt. Dean might be working on an old pastime, the time-honored tradition of annoying his little brother, but man, it’s awesome to watch Sam's jumble of limbs beat a hasty retreat away from Dean. Sam rolls over until he hits that sour spot at the very edge – a coil poking through the mattress.
"Jesus Christ!" Sam scoots up to the front of the bed, glaring blearily in the half-dark until he sees Dean. The last remnants of dreams die as Sam glowers with realization. Scrunching his hair (still too long) in his fists and rubbing the sleep out of his eyes Sam says to Dean, "You're such an asshole."
"Are you awake now?"
"What?" Sam's brain isn't yet working full-time, so Dean's patient, patting Sam's knee.
“You were screaming in your sleep.”
For a moment Sam looks real troubled but he’s too good at shaking it off. “No I wasn’t.”
“Were too. About your science teacher. Is she hot?”
“Oh my God, Dean,” Sam says in a half-whine, “are you bored? Do you want to play Scrabble? Twenty questions? Here’s my first question: can I go back to sleep?”
“I don’t play Scrabble,” Dean answers, blithely ignoring Sam’s eyes which have gone all soft, a look that guarantees Dean’ll be a sucker and start apologizing for waking Sam up. Dammit, the alcohol’s hit its stride and the apology’s on his lips and there’s no bottle to put to his mouth to swallow it away. “Hey, I’m jackass.”
Sam doesn’t say anything so Dean continues, trying to piece together the cloud that’s settled on him, this hazy discontented thing. Something Sam had blathered about a couple of weeks ago when he had been reading some play for English. Now is the winter of their discontent. Some bullshit poetry like that. “It’s the year 2000.”
“Well, according to the Western calendar.”
“Dude, no history lectures. It’s just, you know, it’s two thousand and the world’s still here and it’s like,” Dean struggles and gives up on the drunken thread of thought. “Nah. Forget it. You go back to bed.”
A condescending pat to the head and Dean says, “I’m gonna pass out on the couch. Closer to the bathroom. Go ahead and take your revenge on me sometime in the morning, okay?”
Dean doesn’t go to the couch right away. First things first, he steps outside and looks up into the sky, looking for something, something that means something more than this and he doesn’t find a thing.
“Huh,” he says and he ignores that itchy creeping crawl of gloom that’s been bogging down his stomach ever since Sam tumbled into his teens. Things’ll be okay. He just needs to make sure to avoid that brand of beer for the rest of his life. He’s going to be twenty-one. Birthdays ain’t a big deal with him, but still, that’s pretty sweet.
He shouts into the cold night Happy New Year and laughs when some dogs take up the call, howling in response.
January 1st, 2001
Dean refuses to have this New Year’s Eve turn out to be like last year, getting drunk by his lonesome and turning into a friggin’ one man pity party. Instead he gets rip-roaring shit-faced drunk when crashing a “Real Millennium’s Eve” party.
He's got several interesting shades of lipstick over his mouth and he has a vaguely uncomfortable notion that he may have kissed someone (or several someones) with stubble on their face. But man, their lips were soft. Huh. He's pretty sure he's not a three-beer queer (because he's gone way beyond three ‘round about hour one of this crazy-ass revelry) especially since this little thrum of hot damn is coursing through his blood as he scopes out two hot brunettes going at it in the "damn that extra layer of clothing blocking some of the action" biblical sense.
Dean's not technically an exhibitionist. Don't let Sam convince you otherwise, that one time Dean walked stark naked from a chick's home after a very awesome night and a really bizarre morning after was a total accident. But, after weighing the pros and the cons, he wouldn't mind joining in the floor show, even with all the people watching.
Hell, this is freakin' Sodom and Gomorrah, and if the world's really gonna end now, there's reason for it. Someone grabs his ass and Dean doesn't care if the hand is of the male or female persuasion because hell yeah, that's a great jolt to the system. Dammit, he shouldn't have had those last five or something (he lost count) shots of whatever, 'cause now his mind is totally game but his body ain't willing to do anything fun. Son of a bitch.
So of course that's the cue for Sam to come barreling in, looking almighty pissed (but he's been working that mood ever since he turned seventeen and got a raging case of the bitchy). "Dean? Where the hell have you been? Dad just got home and he's looking for you."
Oh. Maybe he shouldn't have given his cell phone out to that hot redhead when she totally needed to call some of her girlfriends to come over to the party. Dean pats down his pockets and yep, it's gone.
Sam comes closer and it is just not fair that he can tower over Dean, just like Dad does. Voice dropping down so low that Dean has to lean forward to hear (and if he misjudges the distance and shoulder-bumps into Sam, it ain't his fault), Sam says, "Uh, why did you let that guy grab your ass?"
Dean has an awesome answer, one that'll guarantee two things: 1) his brother won't think he's a total slut and 2) just 'cause he's swaying doesn't mean he's hammered. "Why'd yer mack on tha' dude?"
"God, Dean,” Sam says, wrinkling his nose as if Dean smells like he’s bathed in a vat of rotgut mentholated liquor. “You're such a hedonist."
Damn Sam and his SAT vocabulary words. Dean lobs back, looking for a word that has more than one syllable, and damn, it’s a lot harder under these circumstances, "Caucasian."
Dean has no idea why Sam's smiling, only that the toothy grin makes him long to wipe that goofy look off Sam's face. He flexes his fingers, itchy for something and maybe it’s not violence, but it’s action. He has to do something, problem is he has no idea what it is and his mind’s too clouded with alcohol to figure it the fuck out.
“That’s me. Sam Winchester, Caucasian. C’mon, we need to get coffee into you. Where’s the car?”
The car. Dean remembers something black and shiny, a beauty that’s all his. “My baaaaaby s’over there.”
Sam feels up Dean’s jeans for the keys, muttering, “You just sang about the car like a Motown singer. Why did I go looking for you when I could have just enjoyed Dad laughing at your heinous hangover tomorrow?”
Dean knows that there’s a word for that kind of question. Rhetory-something. Doesn’t mean he ain’t gonna reply. “Cause yer mah brothah.”
Sam mutters something dark and Dean doesn’t catch it, fuckin’ house music gets turned up now of all times? He suspects Sam’s bitching about them spending too much time in the South, and okay, yeah, sometimes Dean’s accent wanders and gets mired down in good old southern ground. Like Sam can criticize anyone when half his words come stomping over in a two-step to a Texan beat. With cowboy boots on.
“Dean, what did you say? Texan two-step? Cowboys?”
Maddening. They’re up close and personal to full on lesbian sex (the panties are gone and this is the best party ever) and Sam has his eyes locked on him.
Sam rolls his eyes, heaving a sigh of disgust and says, “When you’re sober, I’m going to ask how the one who wasn’t smiling when a guy was touching his ass is the gay one.”
“I’m good bait,” Dean offers as Sam starts walking him to the door. “Get you a hot boytoy.”
“Unlike you, I like girls,” Sam informs him as he actually opens the passenger door for Dean and helps him in. He’s drunk not invalid. Although whoa, how does he get his legs in there? Jamming his legs inside takes him a couple of minutes, plenty of time for Sam to get settled in the driver’s seat.
“I love girls,” Dean insists. Sam looks a little petrified behind the wheel, so Dean switches tactics, helpfully adding, “Yer gonna die if you screw up the car.”
“Dean,” Sam says, sarcasm dripping so thick it’s amazing it isn’t turning solid, “you’re so awesome at pep talks.” After adjusting the mirrors and starting up the car, Sam lets out a breath he must have been holding for a long time ‘cause he looks almost pained. As he backs up, he says, “I think we should inject coffee directly into your veins. This is insane.”
“Dad won’t care,” Dean smashes the bitter out of his voice, keeping the ease of being drunk as misdirection. The sobering thought that yeah, Dad would be pissed that Dean didn’t answer his phone, but not about the rest, is too much too bear and Dean’s almost sick to his stomach.
Wait. He is sick to his stomach. “Uh, don’t feel so...”
Sam’s shit at stopping, just freakin’ slams on the brakes to a jerky stop and Dean almost hurls over the dashboard but he keeps it together long enough to open the car door.
Sobriety will be a long time coming, but in the moment where all Dean can taste is bile and misery, he tells Sam, “Happy freakin’ New Year’s.”
Sam gives him this weird sidelong glance and Dean ignores it, petting the steering wheel.
“Time to go face my maker. Drive, Sam.”
“Dean...” Sam begins, but Dean cuts him off.
“It’s the end of an era.” Dean thinks he might be jumping the gun, doesn’t know why, but he feels that this is something he wants to say, but he wouldn’t dare when he’s not drunk. There’s more and it’s a gaping chasm between the want to say it and the words that are available. This is a problem of Dean’s: he knows that even when he’s stone-cold sober, these words don’t come easy to him and that they never will. So he ends it there and the rest of the drive is relatively quiet. Sam might play otherwise but sometimes he gets it and Dean’s grateful for that.
Dean’s terrified that things are changing for the worse. He has a name for the thing that’s been catching up with him these past two New Year’s celebrations, it’s nothing like mourning, but it’s the fear of something coming, something that Dean knows is gonna wind up biting him on the ass.
When Sam stops off at a 24-hour mart to get some terrible coffee, Dean says to no one in the car, “Don’t go,” and he hates the way it sounds, too hoarse and hollow. His mouth is drying out and he presses his lips shut. In the rearview mirror, he absently wipes away spittle and remnants of lipstick. He sees a hickey starting to bruise his neck and he doesn’t care that he has no idea who gave it to him.
The point of these goddamn end-of-the-year parties is to welcome a new beginning, right?
Well, Dean’s pretty damn happy in the goddamn now and doesn’t want a fucking thing that all the potential of the future offers.
When Sam gets back in the car, offering the sweet lie of coffee, not a real cure, but it does okay in a pinch (a hit of caffeine will at least kill off some of the gnawing apprehension doing a number on Dean’s brain), Dean puts a fist in the air. Not for Rock, Paper, Scissors, but for an honest-to-God fist bump and Sam complies.
With the first sip of the coffee (and it’s worse than Dean could’ve ever imagined and Sam put freakin’ hazelnut bullshit creamer in it or something), Dean starts rationalizing all the worries that have been plaguing him, lying to himself. Things won’t change.
It’ll all be okay.
There’s no need to ever celebrate the turning of a new year after this one.