He'd never in a million years figure out how the hell it had happened.
The kid was just too damn persistent. That had to be it. Wouldn't give up trying to help him, and doing that soulful thing with those big brown eyes of his…
It was wrong. It was all wrong. But damned if he couldn't bring himself to send Sam away for good, even if it would be for his owngood.
He'd picked the kid up in his hire car halfway across America, on an impulse driven by boredom and a sudden need for company. That'd been his first mistake. The second had been not dropping him off in the nearest town as soon as he realised how earnest - how innocent - his passenger was about everything. People like that shouldn't mix with him - they tended to meet nasty ends. Just like everybody else.
Still, too late now. The kid was attached to him like a limpet, no getting rid of him - and if truth be known, John wasn't at all sure he wanted to. Which was a fucking scary thought.
He'd have to ditch him somewhere eventually, of course. Continuing things as they were would only get the kid killed or worse, and John could really live without adding another ghost to his collection. The moment would present itself sooner or later where he could leave Sam somewhere he'd be safe.
And then he would. Yeah. Just had to get him there first, though - could hardly just abandon the kid in the middle of nowhere, where anyone could get their hands on him.
That had been the plan, anyway. And then he'd done a very stupid thing.
What the hell had possessed him to take the kid out drinking?
Well, apart from the fact that he felt like it. And wanting to make sure the kid's first experience of that was a good one. Other than those.
Anyway, getting off the point. He and Sam had gone out and got very drunk, and of course there'd been a bar fight. He attracted bloody bar fights. Least they'd all been human, this time, easily beaten even six on one.
He'd looked round when it was all over, bleeding and short of breath, to see Sam peering out nervously from behind a table. Reassured that there'd be no more violence, the boy had emerged, silently taken his hand, and more or less dragged him back to their motel.
When they got up to John's room, Sam had headed straight for the bathroom and the first aid kit, and patched him up as best he could. It wasn't like he was hurt bad anyway, just bruises and a few small cuts, but he'd been glad of the help.
It was what had come after he was struggling to understand. He'd been stinking drunk, of course, but even so… that couldn't be the only reason why, finding the kid directly in front of him wrapping his ribs, he'd tangled a hand in Sam's hair and kissed him.
They'd ended up in the bed in fairly short order. Even drunk as he was, John had been as gentle as he could - with an innocent like this, nothing else was right, and there'd be enough roughness waiting for Sam in the world outside.
And that was what had led him to where he stood now - in a motel doorway, on the point of leaving. Only then he'd made the mistake of looking back. Idiot. What'd you go and do that for? Sam was still asleep, curled up comfortably in the mussed bedclothes.
John stared for a long moment, trying to work up the will to leave right now. He'd left the boy enough cash to get a Greyhound out of there, and they'd have to part ways sooner or later, anyway. But for some reason, something in him didn't want it to be yet.
Finally defeated, he moved back into the room to drop into the armchair with a groan.
"Constantine, you are so screwed…"