This is another update on what Oscar’s up to in the Brothers Together AU. In this short, he’s about 18 years old.
Oscar was almost ready to doze off, but he forced himself to stay alert. He couldn’t afford to let his guard down in such a precarious spot. Even now, the shadows on the nearest wall shifted and moved with the humans in the room, humans that were only steps away from his hiding place at the most.
He stood behind the TV, feeling the constant buzz of electricity while someone on the other side of it reported the weather for the afternoon. Dust piled up there, on the surface of the dresser where no one usually bothered to look. It gave Oscar a better view of the table nearby, but it wasn’t as safe.
He usually waited down on the floor, underneath the dresser. In all of the motel rooms, under the dresser was the safest place. He was out of sight, and even the maids never had occasion to look down there.
Today, though, was special. Even the humans kept it marked on all of their calendars.
Oscar didn’t understand what it meant or why they celebrated it, but Thanksgiving came without fail every late fall, and he’d learned to capitalize on it as much as he could. With winter looming close and snow on the ground outside already, he needed to stock up on as much food as he could. Thanksgiving and the holiday close on its heels, Christmas, were the best opportunities for Oscar to gather supplies for the cold months.
They meant food and lots of it.
Food like the arrangement sitting barely a foot away from him, a salad tray crammed onto what little space the TV left on the dresser. Cheese, crackers, cucumbers, and carrots were within view just from there, and he could have sworn he saw tomatoes.
Fresh things were a rarity in the <i>Knight’s Inn.</i> Oscar would have to eat them quicker if he managed to snag some, but they would be worth it. He could store almost everything but the cheese to make it last.
Of course, he couldn’t make it out there just yet. There was a pair of humans across the room, watching the weather report absently. They had yet to return the lid to the food tray after sampling from it, but they hadn’t left the food unattended either. If Oscar tried for it now, he’d be in their line of sight.
A shudder ran down his spine. Oscar had only ever been caught once, and he couldn’t afford to risk letting it happen again. Next time, he might not find himself in the grasp of the one friendly human he’d ever meet.
Dean Winchester was long gone. Oscar hadn’t seen him or his younger brother Sam in ten years. Back then, they’d been torn away from him before he had a chance to even try to follow. They were unique, and he’d let them slip away by sleeping in one morning.
He was grateful for one thing. Oscar had made it to eighteen years of age, and he still had a spark of hope in his heart. Ten years hadn’t quite erased them from his memory, and when he found himself in need of cheering up, he could imagine Sam wandering into the walls to visit him in his house. Talking to him while he worked on his sewing, or coaxing him out into the open to visit Dean.
They were his only friends in the whole world. Oscar couldn’t remember what they sounded like, and their faces had become hazier in his memory every year, but they were still there. They’d always be there.
The bed creaked somewhere beyond the TV and Oscar flinched. He almost missed one human voice asking “You almost ready to go?” as one of the humans stood up.
A sleepy mumble was the only reply, and Oscar took a moment to calm his startled heart while there was a rustle of bedcovers and another creak. From the look of the shadows on the wall, one human had stood. The other had flopped over on the bed entirely, too comfortable to go.
There was a heavy sigh, a voice tinged with annoyance that sounded so much scarier from a giant human. “Fine, a few more minutes, but once I get out of the bathroom we’re going. Your aunt hasn’t seen you since last year.”
Oscar waited for a reply, but none came. The human that spoke walked across the room, his shadow stalking along the wall. When the bathroom door clicked shut, Oscar took his cue.
He edged towards the side of the TV hastily. One surreptitious glance around it showed that another human had indeed buried themselves in the covers on the bed, an ornery stand against going anywhere for Thanksgiving. Why they’d want to avoid such a feast was beyond him, but Oscar didn’t question it. Instead, he darted out into the open.
Leaving a hiding place always came with a burst of adrenaline that threatened to steal his balance away. Oscar had to fight to keep focused, and he did by fixing his eyes on the food arrayed in front of him. He’d waited for the day all year.
He skidded to a halt at the edge of the sampler tray and immediately grabbed an entire cracker from the top of the pile. He knew the routine; they never missed stuff like this. His other hand was already dragging a baby carrot closer before he set his bag down to start loading it up.
He had a spare bag that he used for days like this. It was larger than his usual cloth sling, but not as easy to carry. He had more room to stuff the cracker and carrot inside, and then stand up for a small piece of cheese to go along with it. Oscar worked fast, never taking more than one of any kind of food on the tray from what he could reach. He even managed to tug free a few small sprouts from a tuft of broccoli.
Next, he threw the flap over the top of his hoard of food and hoisted it up. His cloth shoes scrambled against the dusty dresser top as he turned and darted back to his hiding place in time for the bathroom door to swing open once more. He’d made it.
Oscar grinned and imagined showing off his haul to his friends. Sharing Thanksgiving with someone would be nice for once, but Oscar only had his memories to join him at his table once again. Despite the loneliness that stretched out behind him and on forever in front of him, he was grateful at least for that.