Burning Up

Imagine Dean taking care of you when you have a fever.

Author’s Note: Dean x reader where they are hunting partners and reader is slightly intimidated by Dean. She gets sick and he stays with her. POV swapping. I know this isn’t a request but I am feeling terrible and running low on creative juices. I don’t want to write anything poorly for you guys, so I just went with this instead of writing nothing! Fluffy and a little sexy cute! Warnings: Non-descript nudity, light language, illness

"Y/N! Come on, we have to go!" I woke up suddenly, my hands grasping at the sea of sheets around my body. Sweat made the thin fabric cling to my arms and legs. I felt completely disoriented, ripping the clock from it’s place beside me. "9:00am" I slammed it back down and struggled to think clearly. Today was Tuesday, we were leaving to meet Garth in Tulsa at 8:30. I silently marveled at how I had slept through my alarm and tried to get up. My body was weak and I groaned when my words got caught in my throat.

"Ugh, Dean… I don’t know…" His fist pounded on the door again.

"Come on lazy ass, we need to go!" My throat was burning and scratchy, unable to swallow completely. I raised a hand to touch it and realized I wasn’t wearing anything besides my underwear. Various articles of clothing floated around by my legs and were strune on the floor. I must have kicked them off in my sleep.

"Okay, I warned you. I’m coming in." I heard Dean grumble and shake the door knob roughly. I threw myself back under the disheveled covers, panting at the amount of effort it took.

Dean POV

Y/N had a habit of being late, but this was ridiculous. Sam and I had been sitting around for a half an hour now. If she wanted to be a hunter she would have to learn that time is precious. I wiggled the knob and realized it wasn’t locked, only propped shut with a wedge. Typical. I slammed my shoulder against the edge of the door twice, the second time loosening the jam. The door flew open and I stepped forward from the momentum. I found myself squinting in the darkness of her room, unable to make out anything beyond my hand.

“You haven’t even turned the lights on yet? Are you kidding me?” I growled and felt along the wall for the light. This would be the last time Y/N decided to pull this shit. Once I found the switch I flicked it upwards and braced myself for the flooding of brightness into the small bedroom. I blinked back the spots in my eyes and looked down. The first thing that came into view was a white tank top lying curved around one of my shoes. A pair of jeans and some socks dotted the floor near those. “You are such a slob-” I raised my vision towards the occupied bed with all intention of ripping her a new one, but found myself hesitating. The girl inside was panting and red faced, her eyes wide with shock and confusion. We both stood staring at each other, and I felt a bit of color rising to my cheeks. I watched as her labored breathing made her sheet covered chest heavy upwards. She seemed feverish and panicky. Sam had that same look in his eyes when he was sick after the trials.

“Dean…” My name came out more like a whimper on her lips and she coughed into a shaky hand. A thin sheen of moisture glimmered on her pale skin, shining under the all too bright light. Something inside me ignited. Some kind of strange instinct deep in my subconscious told me that I was supposed to do something, although I was unsure what. It was a desire to protect and preserve, only different than the one I felt for Sam or Cas. I hung between running forward and backing away. “Dean, I think I’m sick.” Her voice made a shiver run up my spine. It was pleading and needy. I finally brought myself to move forward, stepping over the fabric around the room. Despite the disarray, it smelled good. It smelled like those stores that she loved to shop in on special occasions, although she insisted the clothing was too expensive for hunting. I felt myself inhaling deeper, reveling in the source of her scent.

“No wonder you weren’t up yet.” I came to her side and stared down at her with curiosity. She shifted nervously and tugged the blankets up further, triggering another cough. I watched her facial features wince in pain. She had a slightly absent look, like she was staring somewhere past me. “Well, looks like Sam’s going alone today.”

Reader POV

I struggled to focus on Dean’s words and covered my mouth incase another involuntary cough took me. My chest ached as I tried to inhale a deep breath.

“What? No you-” I cleared my throat, a migraine forming behind my eyes. “You need to go with him. I’ll stay.” When I lifted my head Dean’s hand pushed it back down, his palm spread across my forehead. He left it there and wrinkled his brow in observation. His rough skin usually felt hot against mine but today it felt uncharacteristically cool. He frowned and turned his hand so that the back of it was against my cheek. I tried to back away at the thought of my sweat getting on his fingers but he wouldn’t let me move. If my face wasn’t already flush I’m sure he would have seen my blushing.

“Wow, you’re hot.” His face was serious, eyes wrinkled with concern. I stifled a laugh that ripped against my raw tonsils. “Well, thanks.” I gave a half smile. My words came out scratchy and weak. He rolled his eyes and flicked my nose lightly.

“You’re so stupid.” I could tell from his tone that he was just teasing to lighten the mood. His clenching jaw signaled that more than light hearted insults were running through his mind.

“Don’t bother arguing with me, you have a high fever. I’ve babysat Sam enough times to know.” Dean rubbed against the light stubble on his chin and removed his jacket. “Sam is going to go meet Garth on his own. I’ll stay here with you.”

When Dean came back I hadn’t moved much. My whole body ached and every effort to change positions triggered a tickle in my lungs. My mind felt foggy, but I still grew anxious at the thought of Dean staying behind to help me. Ever since I joined the Winchesters, I was a little intimidated by him. I earned my place by their side but Dean still openly challenged me and encouraged me to quit. He wasn’t too fond of a girl joining the ranks. I could tell he had his reasons. We had a mutual respect for one another that was kept congenial by Sam’s presence. But now, while he stood over me and ran a cold cloth along my face, I was unnerved. I had seen those same strong arms kill dozens of demons and hellish creatures. I had heard the tales of how he championed purgatory and tortured souls in hell.

“Hey, you need to stop quirming. You’ll raise your temperature.” The stony faced hunter scowled at me and dipped the washcloth back into the bowl of cold water. I tried to hold still while he doted over me. Honestly I’d rather if Sam stayed behind with me, he was so much gentler and far more kind.

“I… I can do that myself.” I reached upwards in an attempt to grasp the little towel. Large fingers held my wrist from rising any further. He didn’t bother reprimanding me, and just placed my hand back down at my side. This went on a little while longer in silence before he stopped and stood.

“You need to get all of these off of you.” He was pointing at the layer of bedding that kept my half naked body shielded from his view. I sputtered a cough and shook my head frantically, my temples pounding. He clearly wasn’t taking no for an answer. “Your fever isn’t getting any lower. You have to cool down.” His words were a command, not an explanation. I gripped the sheets around my upper body tighter and wriggled uncomfortably. After I stuttered through several broken sentences his eyes light up and widened. He glanced over the length of my body and then back at my face. “You don’t sleep naked, do you?” He was part disgusted and part intrigued, the tiniest hint of a grin pulling at his sun chapped lips. I averted my face in embarrassment.

“No!” My voice squeaked, causing him to give a tortuous smile. “I just kicked off most of my clothes…” Dean stared at me with an annoyed expression before leaving the room abruptly. It felt like hours before he returned with a folded shirt in his hands. He laid it by my side and gestured that I put it on. The fabric of his T felt worn and comforting under my fiery touch. Sitting up was difficult, but Dean lent his arm for me to pull myself on. My fingers dug into the hard muscles of his shoulders and I hoisted myself into a sitting position. Every time I raised the clothing over my head to put it on, my upper body was wracked with side splitting coughs. Dean first looked unimpressed and then compassionate.

“Geez, do I have to do everything?” He pulled the shirt over my head, all the way to my waist. He was careful to make sure it stretched down as far as it would go and his fingers brushed my hips. Before I could react he removed his hands and ripped back the sheets. I gasped at the cold air suddenly hitting my exposed legs.

“Dean!” I tried to curl myself up but he scowled. “You need to lie down and get cooled off. I know it feels cold, but you have to let the fever pass this way. I can’t have you getting any hotter.” His palm pressed against my forehead again, this time with far more gentleness. The way it slowly moved down my face and chin, I could have sworn it was a caress. His eyes drifted over mine, taking in all of the signals my sick body was putting off. For the first time I felt very safe with him. Something about the way he looked at me said he knew exactly what I needed. A shiver forced me to break our silent stare. “Dean… I’m so cold.” Whenever I was ill I always felt so needy, even for this brute of a man. Dean patted my hand softly and signed.

“I know Y/N, I know.”

Dean POV

Watching her like that, her bare skin shivering against the bed, it was all I could do to stay calm. It was the way she wiggled in discomfort, my shirt sliding along her collarbone and thighs. I shook my head and got more ice from the freezer. I clenched one of the cold cubes in my hand tightly, trying to shock the thoughts from my mind. She was making me burn up just from watching her. It wasn’t right, feeling this way while she felt so terrible. I returned to her side and slid a cold rag across her sweaty nose and cheeks. All of my anger and annoyance was just a ruse to hide the immense concern I felt. Y/N was a silly naive little girl, but she had become my silly naive little girl. I did my best to protect her on each hunt and keep her from all manner of harm. Yet now, she lay outstretched before me, writhing in pain from an unseen foe.

There was nothing I could do but try to make her comfortable as possible. I made her hot tea with lemon and honey, just like my mother would have for me. I thought back to all the small things she would do that made every illness seem less daunting. I remembered laying on my racecar bedspread with my mom leaning over me, her gentle hands tracing circles on my feverish head. I impulsively did the same to Y/N. My calloused fingers curved across the paths of her cheekbones and rubbed against her temples. At first she seemed surprised, but soon she was leaning into my touch every so slightly. I smiled at the way she closed her eyes and sighed. I wanted to whisper some words of encouragement but this wasn’t the time to betray my feelings. When I removed my hand to retrieve more ice, Y/N whined like a puppy. Her cloudy eyes searched for me.

"Dean… I feel terrible." Her hot fingers slid around my arm, pulling me back to her. I combed the damp wisps of hair away from her forehead and dabbed the cold cloth on her lips. She was so vulnerable like this, so innocent and fragile. I felt the urge to wrap her up in my arms, but that last thing she needed was more warmth.

"Shhh, it’s okay." I remembered another gesture my mother used to comfort me. I kissed Y/N’s head with paternal instinct, and my lips were met with fiery skin. "I’m going to take care of you."