For a while it’s just quiet. There’s a certain effect death has on people, on everything, and you just can’t avoid the aftermath- the fallout. There are no machines on, and no beeping or whirring, there are no footfalls of nurses or doctors because they’ve decided to give them their time alone; their time with their dead father, time with his corpse.
They sit there for a long time, opposite sides of the bed, feeling on opposite sides of the world. They sit with their heads bowed (if they prayed, someone might think they were) and don’t speak because words fail them, and they’re useless now. Dean doesn’t touch him, and Sam holds his hand, lifeless and losing warmth. He remembers when he was six, the first time he can ever remember seeing a dead body, and the terror that gripped him from seeing something so empty, so not there, and this was worse. Neither of them says anything about tear tracks on their cheeks, and they understand what needs to be done.
“Dean.” Sam’s voice is quieter than it was hours ago.
There’s nothing more to do here, and Dean looks away. It’s time to go. Dean leaves first (because if he has to face this, and he can’t, he isn’t sure he would be able to stand or breathe), and Sam watches him go. When he’s gone, he has a few minutes to let it hit him (really hit him, this time) and he grabs the small basin on a rolling cart a few feet away. He hits his knees and he pukes his guts up and sobs until he can’t breathe anymore.
His hands shake when he rinses his mouth in the men’s room down the hall. Dean comes in, bag in hand, dressed in his wrecked clothing, and stands behind him. Sam can feel his heat too warm and too close (and he closes his eyes because they can’t do this right now) and he starts to shake.
“Sam.” Dean’s voice is broken, ragged, and Sam thinks he probably puked too. He turns to face Dean, and he breathes slow, shaky. He steps into Sam (and oh god, Sam wants to fall apart right there on the floor and puddle at Dean’s feet) and he smells like antiseptic and sweat. He stares at Sam’s chest, touches the bloodstains on his jacket, and spreads his fingers out palm down over Sam’s heart. He looks up, traces his fingers along Sam’s jaw.
“I know,” Sam says, and his throat aches- he aches, just aches everywhere. Dean nods, takes a shaky breath. He presses his lips to Sam’s, captures his bottom lip gently, presses with his tongue and draws back.
I love you. I’m sorry.
Dean’s shaking when he says “It’s time to go.”