A lot of things suddenly made sense after Sam snuck into the bathroom and read Dad's journal.
Not just stuff like why a salesman would get beat up so often he needed a first-aid kit brimming with bandages and medicine. Not just stuff like why Dad wasn't around half the time. And not just stuff like why Dean was usually walking around with at least a few bruises, if not anything more serious.
Other stuff too.
Like the games Dean made up for them to play. The one where they had to pop specific bubbles in bubble-wrap with a slingshot and pebbles; that must have been for hand-eye coordination. Dean could do it well enough to spell out Happy Birthday, Sammy!, but Sam still messed up most of the time. And the one where they played hide-and-seek with blindfolds, so that they had to figure it out using their ears instead of their eyes; Sam guesses that most monsters live in the dark. And the one where they had to climb trees and do obstacle courses with their hands full, and Dean would make Sam carry old clothes all bundled up and Dean would carry a tree branch but hold it like a gun.
There were a lot of weird games Dean had made up. Because.
Because the monsters might have gotten Mom, but Dean was making sure they wouldn't get Sam.
Sam kicked his mattress angrily, feeling the solidity of the journal tucked underneath. He'd get better, and make sure the monsters couldn't get Dean either. Yeah, he'd play the game.
As always, I'd love to hear what you think.