Dean’s head still throbbed by the time the [Lebanon - 13 miles] sign gleamed in the Impala’s headlights. The three cups of coffee at dinner had not helped to ease the pain, and neither had the four Ibuprofen Sam gave him once they got back to the car. Sleep – that’s what he needed now.
He rubbed his hand over his face, grimacing at the stabbing ache behind his eyes. “Want me to take over?” Sam asked, Dean dropping his hand to the wheel. He sounded concerned and rightly so. If Dean was being honest with himself, Sam should have been the one to drive.
But since when was he honest, especially with himself?
“Nah, I’m good.” He tightened his grip on the steering wheel when Sam scoffed. “Besides, we’re almost home.”
Dean could almost feel Sam roll his eyes. He scanned the shadowed turnoffs for the one that would lead them home. His inner autopilot told him that it was coming up soon, but the actual location was escaping him right now. Panic fluttered in his chest and he bit the inside of his cheek to keep from voicing his concerns. He could figure this out; he could remember this…there was no need to worry Sam.
“Dean.” Sam pointed off to the left side of the road. “Did you forget our turn?” He recognized it then, his anxiety decreasing a little as he slowed down and turned onto the gravel road.
It was not too long before they reached the bunker. Dean was relieved, if not a little overwhelmed, by the rush of memories flooding. Everything would be back to normal in the morning, probably…He just needed to sleep off the lingering remains of the spell.
“Go inside,” Sam said once Dean parked the Impala. “I’ll be there in a minute.”
“So bossy.” Dean slipped out of his seat and grinned back at Sam. He closed the car door and trudged to the front door, his keys jingling in his hand.
The muted sounds of a far-off TV greeted Dean once he was inside the bunker. He squinted, the florescent lights grating against his headache. The high-pitched ring of the TV led him to the study where he found Cas. He glanced over to the doorway when Dean cleared his throat. “Hey, Cas.”
“You’re back.” His brow furrowed as Dean staggered into the room. Little specks of light danced around the edges of his vision as Cas sat up on the couch. “Are you okay? Dean?” Dean nodded, his temples throbbing in protest at the quick movement. He must have winced, judging by the concerned tch of Cas’ tongue. Dean sat on the edge of the couch next to him and met his eyes. “What happened?”
“Witch. Lost my memory for a while. Now all I’ve got is this headache.”
Cas extended his hand, placing his fore and middle fingertips on Dean’s temple. The vice-like pressure vanished in a blink of an eye. Cas’ gentle touch lingered for a few seconds before he dropped his hand to the space between them on the couch. “Better?”
Dean moved to stand, happy to find that the world was no longer topsy-turvy. “Much. Thanks, buddy.”
“It’s what I’m here for.”
Dean looked down at Cas who had gone back to watching TV, anxiety tightening around his chest. The mantra he had chanted to himself all day sprang unbidden to his mind once again. My name is Dean Winchester. Sam is my brother. Mary Winchester is my mom. And Casti –
“You’re my best friend.” He blurted before the panic he felt earlier could settle in again. “You know that, right?” A tiny smile curved the corner of Cas’ lips as he nodded. “Promise me you won’t forget that.”
Cas glanced over, looking like he was about to make some sort of sarcastic remark. His smirk, slight as it was, dropped when he took in Dean’s solemn expression. “I promise.”
A sigh of relief loosened the anxious tension constricting his chest. Dean smiled as he headed for the door. “Night, Cas.” He paused when he reached the doorway, glancing over his shoulder to find Cas watching him. “See you tomorrow?”
Silver Star Mountain is an amazing alpine zone. The altitude is not high, but a fire in 1902/3 cleared the trees away, and many never grew back, leaving windswept alpine plants and meadows. The views are tremendous, and especially colorful on a winter day. From the top, six major Cascade peaks can be seen: Rainier, St. Helens, Adams, Hood, Jefferson, and North Sister.
Geologically, the mountain is a granite pluton that formed the plumbing of an ancient volcano. Several sub peaks, including Sturgeon Rock and Pyramid Rock, are old basaltic andesite flows that came out of the former volcano. The view is nearly unparalleled, and the mountain is one of the highest for a long ways, allowing for such an unobstructed view.
These are from November 4th of this year. Total mileage for this day was 13.2 miles.