Authors note: Something to get me out of my life rut. Companion piece to Fresh Dirt. Got way longer than expected.
“Unky Dee! Unky Dee! Wake up!” Someone was shoving his shoulder as Dean rolled over to look at his clock. Seven am.
“Char, it’s seven. And Saturday. Why are you up so early?” She pouted, crossing her arms in the most adorable way.
“It’s my Unky Dee weekend. Mommy and daddy are on vacation. We get the whole weekend together and you told me that we could go to the gardens and the park today.” Dean sat up, rubbing his eyes.
“Why seven am?” She frowned, hands on her hips just like her mother.
“You told me you would make me Mickey pancakes.” Dean smiled.
“That’s right monkey. I did tell you that. Come on.” He scooped her up as he stood. “Let’s go make Mickey pancakes.” Charlie was the perfect little helper, and when Dean flipped her Mickey Mouse pancake over she squealed in delight, so excited she accidentally rested a hand on the hot griddle to get a closer look. She screamed loud enough to cause Dean to drop the spatula.
“Charlie! Are you okay?” He snatched her up, bouncing on the balls of his feet and smoothing her hair. “Here, let me see munchkin.” He pulled on her arm lightly until she let go of his neck, and examined her hand. “It’s just a little burned. You scared me kiddo. Come on.” He took her to the sink and ran cold water over it until her sniffles subsided and the skin was no longer an angry red.
“I’m sowwy I scared you Unky Dee. I just hurt my hand.” Tears welled up in her eyes again, and Dean hugged her close.
“It’s okay Char. Let’s just make that the only injury this weekend okay?” She nodded. “Remember,”
“No twips to the emergency room,” she recited. Dean smiled and sat her at the table.
“That’s right. Here’s your Mickey.” While she ate happily, Dean cooked himself a couple, drowning them in syrup. He laughed when he saw Charlie wrinkling her nose at the syrup.
“Syrup is sticky and gross, Unky Dee.”
“Well it’s not too bad, especially when you-” Dean cut himself off, not completing the sentence he had started. Charlie squinted at him, head tilted, and Dean responded by shoving a too big bite into his mouth.
“Just because you can doesn’t mean you should, Unky Dee,” Charlie said, causing Dean to almost choke.
“You sound just like your mother,” he managed to get out after a coughing fit.
“Well, mommy’s always right,” she said, grinning up at him. Dean chuckled.
“That she is.” He glanced down at her plate. “Look at you! You ate all of your Mickey! Good job monkey!” Charlie giggled. “You ready to get dressed?” She nodded, pushing herself from the table and climbing out of her chair.
“Can I wear my jeans and sparkly purple shirt with the mermaid on it?”
“You can wear anything you like. Last one to brush their teeth is a rotten egg!” He yelled, and Charlie shrieked in delight, her short legs running as fast as they could go to the bathroom. Dean chased after her, threatening tickles if he caught up. She shrieked again, making the turn into the bathroom.
“You’re a rotten egg Unky Dee!” She laughed when Dean finally got to the bathroom. He laughed with her and helped her brush her teeth, pulling out the step stool so she could reach the sink. Finally on the road, Dean popped in one of his favorite tapes, nearly driving off the road when Charlie sang along with the music.
“How do you know the words, monkey?” She looked at him in the rear view mirror, grin fading from her face.
“It’s one of your favorites. I hear it all the time. Did I do sumfin wrong?” Dean shook his head, glancing to the road again.
“No, monkey, nothing’s wrong. I’m just surprised, is all.” Charlie smiled again and went back to staring out the window, singing along to Stairway to Heaven.
It was a beautiful day, which meant the gardens were crowded. Charlie sat on Dean’s shoulders, looking at all the pretty flowers and bugs, until Dean heard her tummy growl.
“You ready for lunch?”
“Can we do burgers?” She asked, looking down at Dean.
“Of course we can. Let’s go.” After a burger and a shared milkshake and their favorite diner, Dean and Charlie were finally going to the brand new park Charlie had been dying to visit.
Dean managed to score a parking spot under a tree, and had barely unbuckled Charlie when she was off running to the slides. Dean let her go on her own; the park was designed for kids under the age of 16 and had that shredded-tire mulch to break falls. Dean sat, left ankle on right knee, arms draped over the back of the bench and he watched Charlie play and interact with the other kids.
“Which one’s yours?” He turned to find a beautiful woman standing next to the bench, hair tied up in a bun. She had on a white tank top and shorts, aviators covering her eyes and sandals on her feet. Dean sat up, removing his arm and gesturing for her to sit. He looked for Charlie, finding her brown curls on a seesaw.
“Brown curls, purple shirt.” The woman followed his gaze and smiled. “But she’s not mine. Niece,” he explained, seeing her confused face.
“She’s cute.” Dean smiled and nodded.
“She is. Yours?”
“Blonde, blue shirt.” The kid she mentioned just so happened to be the kid Charlie was playing on the seesaw with.
“He’s cute,” Dean said.
“Thanks, and he’s mine,” she added and they both laughed.
“Dean,” Dean said, sticking a hand out.
“Lindsey,” she replied.
“Cute name. Cuter owner,” he said. She blushed, brushing stray hairs behind her ears. They fell into easy conversation, talking about everything under the sun until Charlie came up with Lindsey’s boy, who was trying very hard not to cry.
“Unky Dee, Andrew has a splinter in his hand. Can you fix it?” Dean held his hand out, Andrew shyly placing his hand in it. The splinter was huge, partially sticking out but too shallow for Dean to grab with his fingers. He pulled out a leatherman, opening up the needle nose pliers.
“This may hurt, but I’ll do my best to make it quick okay Andrew?” Andrew nodded, looking at Charlie, who took his other hand in hers. Dean quickly pulled it out, and Lindsey was waiting with Neosporin and a bandaid.
“What do you say, Andrew?” Andrew looked shyly at Dean, smiling.
“Thank you Mr. Dean for fixing my hand.” Dean ruffled his hair.
“No problem, kid. Be safe, okay?” Andrew ran off, but Charlie stayed.
“Will you push me on the swing Unky Dee?” Dean picked her up and spun her around.
“Of course kiddo. Let’s go.” He turned to ask Lindsey if she’d like to go over with him, but she had gotten up and was leaving with Andrew. Dean wanted to call out to her or go over but Charlie was tugging him over to the swings and he lost his chance.
Dean pushed Charlie on the swings until she started to get droopy eyed, and he carried her back to the Impala. When he got there, there was a note stuck on the windshield. He got Charlie all buckled before he plucked the note from under the wiper.
“I’d like to see you again sometime if you’re up for it. Pretty sure Andrew likes Charlie, too :)” the note wasn’t signed, but there was a number at the bottom. Flipping it over, Dean smiled. “P.S. This is a beautiful car with a more beautiful owner.” He tucked the note in his pocket and climbed into the drivers seat. Charlie was knocked out before they got out of the parking lot, and stayed asleep as he carried her inside. Once he tried to put her in bed though, she woke.
“Can we watch tangled?” Dean laughed, walking back to the library.
“Sure. Let’s do it.” Five minutes into the movie, both were sound asleep, and that’s how Sam and (Y/N) found them the next morning, home early from vacation. Dean was on his back, left arm tucked under his head and the other around Charlie.
“He loves her,” (Y/N) said.
“She loves him,” Sam replied, noticing a piece of paper sticking out of his pocket. He carefully pulled it out, holding it so (Y/N) could read it too.
“Seems like they had a good day,” (Y/N) said, smiling at her brother-in-law and daughter.
“That it does,” Sam said, pulling a blanket over them.