Why yes, yes it is. The old account is still around but I’m just not active on it.
Why yes, yes it is. The old account is still around but I’m just not active on it.
He stared at him. “I…I didn’t leave you, I tried to get you out, I tried you…I did not leave you!” He said firmly, refusing to let him go for a second, hands clenching the trench coat tight in his fingers.
His expression ticked at the angel’s tone, confused as to why the hell he seemed to be so damn condescending about this. He shook his head. “I’m…Neither did you! You didn’t belong there either you-” Belong right here with me.
"Cas. I…I told you- I need you. Why would you leave if you knew that? After I told you that?” Why wasn’t I enough to keep you with me?
A look of slight disbelief crosses the angel’s expression as his brows knit together. The hunter’s words didn’t make any sense to him and how could they with what he knew? “You… need me? Really, Dean? I’m a monster and you know it. No different from those you hunt for a living.”
He takes a step closer, pressing against the hands tangled within his coat as he stares at the other. He doesn’t want to relive his crimes but it seems as though Dean just doesn’t get it. “Did you forget the numerous, innocent people I slaughtered? Did you forget I willingly opened Purgatory? That I unleashed Leviathans upon the world? Did you forget I broke Sam’s mental wall? That I was the reason Bobby ended up dead?” He forces himself out of Dean’s hold, away from the bright light of the hunter’s soul that he had no right being near. The righteous man who had known better than an angel.
"Dean…How could I stay with you? How could I leave Purgatory when I deserved it all? I deserved to be torn apart for eternity, not by your side. That’s a reward and my actions demand the opposite." His gaze fell away from the one in front of him. "It wasn’t what you believe. It’s what was best for you. Because I’m destroying your life."
Dean wanted to chase is eyes and hold his gaze and never lose sight of that blue again. It was all that was reassuring him that Cas was, in fact, right there in front of him.
He gave a breathless, disbelieving laugh. “The son of a bitch did it,” he said softly. He frowned. “Whoa, whoa, whoa, what? What do you mean you stayed? You…you didn’t hang onto me, you didn’t try to stay with me you-” His brows knitted together, not understanding and that much more hurt. “You…stayed on purpose?”
Dark eyes narrowed slightly with confusion at Dean’s statement. “Yes, I thought you remembered that. I shoved you away and told you to go on without me.” Those eyes shift as they study the emerald pair intently. “You… think you left me behind.” It wasn’t a question; it was obvious from the look in Dean’s eyes. Castiel should have expected it from the hunter who always took responsibility for every horrible event that happened to him or those he called family.
Or had called family.
"Dean." There was a hint of exasperation in his tone. "You did everything possible to get me to go with you. I just… deserved the punishment I was given. The only reason I went with you was because I knew it was the only way you’d leave. You never would have left if I hadn’t stated I’d go with you… and you didn’t belong in Purgatory."
"I…I just got back with Sam a little while ago," he whispered, not taking his hand off of him. He couldn’t. "I haven’t found Kevin yet, Sam’s been tryin’ him but I don’t- How’d you get out?" He demanded, looking him with that same warmth and open vulnerability with a thin shield of pain and anger in front of them.
"What the hell happened, Cas?"
It was seen clearly to the angel, the swirl of emotions clearly in Dean’s eyes, as the hunter demanded answers. He wasn’t sure how to answer them. The betrayal and shock in those eyes when he had pushed Dean’s hand away in Purgatory was still fresh in his memory, something he’d never forget.
Exhaling softly, his gaze fell away from the other. “….It was Gabriel… he pulled me from Purgatory. He came in with the specific task of searching for me, and assisted me in escaping a few days ago. As for why I stayed…. It was a punishment I believe I deserved. After everything I had done, that was where I could find redemption…” He looked up at the hunter briefly. “I thought it was a fitting punishment.”
He just stared at him. At Cas at his angel that he’d been looking for since the second he rolled out of Purgatory and he was just…here again. Right in front of him like he’d never left.
"Cas," he repeated. He couldn’t get anymore out at this point. He staggered toward, him, his heart pounding. His expression twisted into confusion. "I…I’m fine. I was til you walked out in front of me," he breathed. "Now…"
Now what? Was he happy? Angry? Upset? Relieved? He didn’t know. He just didn’t know. He swallowed and stared at the angel.
"Now I’m okay. I…" He stepped closer still, reaching out to touch his shoulder, just to see if he was real. When his hand closed around the trench coat he sighed. "I’m okay."
There’s a sense of… well, he’s not sure what it is, as Dean approaches. It seems to be a mixture of uncertainty and trepidation. There’s a flight reaction trying to kick in, but Castiel manages to keep himself grounded. He did ask for a sign from his father… perhaps this was it.
The hunter’s hand on his shoulder just causes more tension as does the words spoken to him. “You… went from fine to good. Isn’t that a decline?” He inquired as his own hands clench while he struggles with the emotions warring within. He expected an awkward conversation if he ever ran into the Winchester again, but that didn’t mean he was prepared for it. Before he left, he did want some of his questions answered.
"Did you find Sam, Kevin? Are they okay?" He could remember the events leading up to Purgatory. How they had gone to track down Dick while Sam went to find Kevin. Had he found him? Were they safe or is that why Dean was traveling alone?
Intelligent golden eyes raked over the younger angel. The vessel, slender, dark-haired, human, was unfamiliar still, but his Grace he could have picked out anywhere, defiant because of his loyalty, now so shattered and broken. The gravelly voice was nonchalant and contrite but the Archangel knew better, read between the words and stiffened slightly, not liking what he saw. Sacrifice. Monster. Oh, how he would have loved to chide him for it, and would have, before the imagery of misery-drenched blue eyes floated into his mind. Well, little brother, he thought, because in his mind he was unable to think of him as anything else, looks like we aren’t that different after all. The arrogance of angels, their choices. They weren’t meant for this. The tin soldier, crafted to fight and die without a question passing his lips. Castiel. Shield of God. Shields proceeded swords, and could be broken and shattered. Replaceable. It wasn’t then for the first time that Gabriel wondered if they had truly been created without the capacity for free will when so many angels displayed it, willingly or no. Perhaps that was the greatest lie, that they had been born deprived, when it was closer to learned nature. Watching what had happened to the last angel who had exercised it in fury and in choice.
The tin soldier that had broken the ranks and torn to pieces the rulebook for all of him, but he was not the first, and would not be the last. Look at him now, a broken wind-up doll that formulated his own command, look at them both. Falling to rank now because it was the only order in the chaos, the last thing that made any sense. Brothers hurt too much—-so, general and soldier. He nodded to him then, as a wager of wars and a destroyer of nations. Castiel had done what a good soldier would do for his commander, but that knowledge ached far more than he expected. A good soldier. But not because he loved him, why would he?
Not because he wanted to see him safe.
A general, but he was still that fledgling playing dress-up and stumbling in his older brothers’ footsteps—-strong Michael, bright Lucifer, cunning Raphael. A creature of war did not fit the Messenger any more than this desperate meaninglessness suited Castiel. I was once a creature of order as he was, but less so, built not to question but to have freedom, to herald and warn of change. I am the creature of heart, of emotion, Lucifer’s legacy without his logic and my kingdom is built on corpses and on sand. He did not want a war. His weapons were words, shiny, subtle and quick. Nonfatal. Diplomacy was his mother tongue, the sharp edge of his tongue whetted like a sword, the keen cast to his mind. No one need die—--an angel blade always felt so alien in his hands.
“I felt them,” he said softly, and his eyes left the other angel, drifting to the sky, which was rapidly darkening. Far off, the first fragile stars had begun to come out. “Winking out of existence, one by one. I felt them die. Their names are imprinted in my skull, Castiel, I remember.” There was a time once when I might have killed you for your arrogance. I might have played with you like a cat toying with a mouse, letting you run the extent of my reach before closing my claws around you. There was a time when I thought that punishment for sin mattered—-but what does it matter now? What does it accomplish? I don’t want you to suffer. I want you to forgive yourself.
There was enough hatred in the world. Enough suffering. Enough pain. The words resonated in his heart and he turned his head away, eyes bright with tears that would never shed.
The angels are tired. We just want it to be over.
Heaven, Hell, I don’t care who wins! I just want it to be over.
And it was so close. So close to being over. He looked at for a long moment, thin, weary, broken. It would be finished soon, it had to be—-
It will never stop.
“Almost over, little brother.” He had forgotten, or perhaps he didn’t care. If their Father was merciful, they would succeed, or they would die quickly in the face of the brewing rage. Heaven’s justice is not my justice.
How’s the search for Daddy going?
He closed his eyes.
Azure eyes slipped closed at Gabriel’s words. No, he knew the truth. It would never be over. It never was. They stop the Apocalypse and the Leviathans were freed. Now there was another war waging in Heaven. The second one was taken out of power, another stepped up to take their place. It would be a never ending cycle until the world ended.
Though it seemed like that was what his father wanted, Castiel -for all the pain he was in- couldn’t bear to see humanity end. If it had to, he’d rather be dead then watch it happen.
Slowly, he pushes himself away from the trunk supporting his weight and turns to face Gabriel. “Go recover. I will do the same and when the time comes, you’ll have the soldier you wanted ready to fight.” He wasn’t quite sure where he would go. But at this point… he deserved and wanted to be alone.
Dean was driving just to drive at this point, just flooring it down the highway just to watch the world pass like it can’t catch him. Like nothing can ever catch him again. He swallowed and stared out the window, trying not to think about anything.
He didn’t want to think about Crowley. He didn’t want to think about Sam. He didn’t want to think about Jack or Hell or how alone he felt or that he hadn’t eaten in three days and slept in five, he didn’t want to think about trying to numb himself to sleep again tonight when he finally stopped.
He just wanted to drive his car and end up somewhere. That’s it.
That was, however, before the beige shadow appeared in his headlights and he slammed on the breaks with a shout of, “JESUS FUCKING CHRIST!”
He twisted the wheel and skidded to a halt, the car stopping just inches from whatever had walked out in front of him. He scampered out, his heart pounding, blood rushing in his ears.
That stopped when he saw Castiel on the asphalt. The sound stopped because the blood had drained from his face and his heart had stopped. He…he couldn’t…
He blinked several times, just staring at him.
Finally, after minutes of silence save for the nature around them and the rumble of his car, he croaked out,
The sound of screeching tires is the only sound he can hear. And then…
Nothing. Nothing but the sound of his vessel’s blood rushing through his veins. But he’s still standing, exactly where he was before, with no sense of pain or damage. His arms lower and his attention shifts to the vehicle mere inches away from his leg. A very familiar vehicle.
His gaze shifts up to the skies as he silently stares at it with a ‘are-you-serious?’ expression that shifts to one of resignation as he focuses on the driver emerging from the sleek black Impala.
"Dean." he returns the statement of name, though his isn’t a question. He knows exactly who is in front of him. Someone he’s been trying to avoid since leaving Purgatory. He can’t think of something else to say, an excuse for his absence or even an apology. Instead, his head inclines slightly as he studies the other. "You seem tired. Are you sure you should be driving in your condition?"