Fic: Take A Bow 3/6
Title: Take A Bow Author: Lopaka Tanu Disclaimer: I do not own Supernatural. Characters: Dean, Sam, Castiel, Bobby, Anna. Words: 20200 Prompt: 2. Post-apocalyptic or end of the world scenario. For stageira Beta: Thank you to my Muse, Beta and Corrections Officer, kira_bouviea Fandom: Supernatural Pairing: Dean/Castiel Spoilers: Immediately Post 4x22: 'Lucifer Rising'. Rating: Adult Warnings: Language, Violence, Character Death, Angelic Violence, Dean Angst, Dean Centric, Implied Adult Situations. Summary: Dean is the instrument that stops the apocalypse. There are consequences. Author's Note: There are general WTF moments that are explained by the end. ______________________________________
The man looking back at him from the side of the toaster was not him, yet, it clearly was. Cocking an eyebrow, Dean frowned. His reflection met his every action with the perfect mirror. It really was him.
Only, this man looked different.
He couldn't place his finger on it. Dean knew without a doubt that it wasn't him. The hair was a little longer. Those lips were a little fuller than his own. He found himself licking them absently. They tasted of sweet raspberry filling.
Someone liked their donuts. Since his mouth hadn't tasted of the filling, Dean knew it wasn't him. So, who the hell had he been kissing?
"What are you staring at?" That low rumble was all at once familiar and completely alien at the same time.
His body certainly knew how to react to it. Shuddering with pleasure, Dean turned away from the toaster and his reflection. What he found made him stop completely.
Standing in the doorway of the kitchen a few feet away, Castiel had his arms crossed over his chest. The only scrap of clothing he had on was a pair of worn-out sweats that hung dangerously low on his hips. His usual intense stare was there as he studied Dean.
Using his right hand, Dean pointed over his left shoulder at the toaster. "Just saw my reflection in the toaster." Heat traced over his cheeks when he realized how stupid he sounded. Dean decided it was best to go on the offensive. "What are we doing here?"
Castiel snorted. Raising his gaze, he studied the ancient wall paper covering the kitchen. "I used to wonder that myself." Shrugging, he returned to watching the other man. "Perhaps it is our destiny, Dean."
A sly smirk curled the corner of Dean's mouth. "What? So you think a corner in the hell that is suburbia is where we were meant to end up?" He didn't give the Angel a chance to respond. "I think you've been smoking something other than incense there, Cas."
"Some things we have no control over, Dean." Uncrossing his arms, Castiel pushed off from the doorway. He slowly made his way over to stand in front of Dean.
While the other walked, Dean tracked his every movement. Despite a slight unease, he refused to budge until there was a direct threat to himself.
Castiel raised his left hand, palm up. A solid gold pilot's pin reflected the soft light of the florescents overhead. "You must learn to accept that which has been laid out for you."
With shaking fingers, Dean reached up to take the pin. No matter how hard he might try, he could not tear his eyes from the wings. The moment his skin made contact a shock ran through his system. His eyes shut in pain as he gasped.
Soft lips took advantage of this distraction.
Dean moaned in to Castiel's mouth. Too stunned by the sudden onslaught, he offered no resistance when the angel's hand came up to cup the back of his head. As a tongue invaded his mouth, the only thought that broke through Dean's shock was that he could taste sweet raspberry filling.
Licking his lips, Dean swallowed the mouthful of strawberry glaze and pancakes. He started to smile as he looked up. The sight of his brother staring back at him startled him enough that he jerked a little. Panic seized his heart as he glanced about the still full diner.
He took a shuddering breath. Realization that he had been dreaming settled on his shoulders like a lead weight. The heavy presence of reality made breathing hard. With a grimace, he looked down at his near empty plate.
With another swallow to clear his throat, he pushed his plate away. "I'm done any time you are."
Seeing this made Sam frown. Much to his surprise there were still pancakes on Dean's plate. Swallowing his own mouthful of fruit, he cleared his throat. "Dean, are you all right? Did something happen?"
Dean tried to snort, it came out a painful sigh instead. "You could say that."
Sam started to reach across the table for the other's hand. He stopped midway across, then pulled back with a wince when Dean stared at it. "Sorry." There was nothing left for him to do but sigh. "You want to talk about it?"
Unable to believe his ears, the older man glanced up. He shook his head at the younger's earnest expression.
This was not something he ever wanted to talk about. It was his problem to deal with. Folding his hands together on top of the cold Formica table top gave him time to think. Since he was reacting so strongly to it, he knew that Sam wasn't going to just let it be.
What was the point of talking things over? It wasn't like they could do anything to bring him back. The real mystery was why couldn't the princess figure that out.
Shaking his head, Dean sat back in the booth. He was prepared to wait out until his brother was ready to go. Dean shifted against the back of his seat to scratch his shoulders.
Sam sighed. The pinched look on his face clearly stated how much this annoyed him. Picking up his napkin from his lap he tossed it on his plate. "Fine, let's just leave already."
"Fine with me." Dean quickly reached in to his pocket to pull out a wad of bills. It was steadily getting smaller, but he didn't care. After tossing a twenty on the table he stuffed it back in his pocket.
Sam was already free and standing up by the time he started to slide out of the booth. The towering presence only served to annoy him. He was always doing that looming thing just to make a point. Well, not today!
Elbowing his brother in the side, Dean moved around him and headed for the exit. The pained grunt made him smile. That was much better. As he passed a couple with a set of twin toddlers, the kids squealed with laughter. He snickered as he heard their parents try to quiet them down.
At least someone had a reason to be happy.
Rubbing his shoulders against the seat, Dean checked his rearview mirror. There were ten cars behind him to match the thirty ahead of him. Lunch hour traffic was always the worst to drive in. Everyone was in such a rush to get their food and then get back to their work or where ever they were going.
Thinking of food made Dean's stomach roil. He grimaced when he burped. The taste of breakfast had settled sour in his gut hours ago. It was talking to him even now.
A deep sigh came from the area of the passenger seat.
Dean refused to even look over. That wasn't the first time Sam had let his displeasure be known. The only difference was the frequency between sighs. It wouldn't be long now before the questions started.
Gritting his teeth, Dean tried to keep his soul focus on the traffic. The sun coming through the passenger side windows made the car a little uncomfortable. Scratching his back against the seat again, he checked his side mirrors.
Sam sucked in a noisy breath. There was no exhalation.
Gripping the wheel, Dean braced himself. This was the moment.
"How did he die, Dean?" Sam licked his lips. Keeping his gaze straight ahead was probably the only reason he had enough gumption to ask. "Was it my fault?"
The words hit Dean with the full force of a Mac truck. He almost jerked the wheel to pull them off to the side of the road. By some miracle he maintained his ability to drive. Their effect was still felt though.
Keeping his eyes on the road felt like a good idea to Dean. Taking a quick breath, he swallowed back the sensation of something clogging his throat. He had been expecting it to hurt, but even bracing himself gave him no protection.
Dean opened his mouth to speak, yet no words would come. Any minute now Sam would look over to see if he was all right. God and the whole world knew he wasn't, still, he didn't feel like it was something he should show to his brother. So, he did the only thing he could.
Out of the corner of his eye, Sam caught Dean's head shake. Closing his eyes, he dropped his head with a sigh of relief. Sniffing, he rubbed at his cheek. "So, he really is gone then? Chuck too?"
Dean nodded twice quickly. He nearly jumped out of his skin when a hand landed on his arm. "What the hell..."
"I'm sorry." Squeezing the flesh under his hand, Sam gave Dean a sympathetic look. "I know how much he meant to you."
With a violent twist, Dean shook the offending hand off. "Don't even. You have no idea, no right!" Clenching his jaw, he prevented himself from making any more statements they would both regret later.
For his part, Sam looked chastised enough to let it be. At least, he let that topic be. Sam cocked his head to the side and flared his nostrils. That combined with the way he cleared his throat indicated he was far from finished. "All right."
Hearing the tension in Sam's voice snapped something in Dean's head. Honking his horn, he gave the Impala a little more gas. The car ahead of him deliberately slowed down until he came up on the woman's bumper. A tiny push made her pick up speed.
After that, traffic gave him a wide berth. People kept glancing at him out of their windows, scowling. Yet, none of them would do a thing to get in his way. Within two minutes he was ahead of forty cars instead of just ten.
Spotting an exit sign, Dean nearly floored the accelerator. The sooner he got out of the car, the less chance of him hurting his baby when the blow up happened.
The Impala was barely put in park before Dean was out the door. His boots stamped over the pavement, sounding out his anger. The park was quiet for a Sunday, but Dean didn't notice. All that mattered was that he got away from Sam.
At that very moment he knew he would've killed the bastard if he had a gun in his hand. The knowledge of all that he had done in the past year, all the betrayals, the lies, made it impossible to think of anything else. There was so much hatred in him. That it was for his own flesh and blood made Dean physically sick.
How could Sam have done it? The thought of even contemplating it made Dean's stomach protest and left his face burning. Feeling flushed, he needed to cool down fast or he was going to hurl. A quick survey of the park revealed a huge water fountain. It wasn't worth drinking but the water might be cool enough to run over his skin.
Dean made a beeline for the fountain. With every step, he swallowed back the disgusting taste of his own bile with a grimace. By the time he reached the rim he was near sweating through his shirt. Leaning over, he closed his eyes and sank his hands in the cool water.
His heart nearly exploded from his chest at the drastic change in temperature. The relief was instant though. He quickly gathered up a handful of the water and splashed it over his face. Dean gasped with a full body shudder as the water ran down his skin, then back in to the fountain.
As he worked on cooling himself off, Dean heard familiar footsteps come up behind him. The thought of facing Sam like this alarmed him. He needed a little more time to prepare. So, he put up a hand to ward off his brother. With a cough, he spit to clear the taste from his mouth.
His stomach tried to climb out of his mouth twice more before he brought himself under control. Each time he gagged his shoulders bowed and flexed. Water ran down his chest, under his shirt cooling him.
As tiny streams ran down his back, he bowed from its touch. The cold water hit his shoulders making him twist to relieve the sudden itch. Much to his surprise, he actually felt better from doing all the stretching. Within moments, his strength had returned and his stomach no longer bothered him.
Only when he was certain that he was strong enough to face Sam did he turn. The sight of him standing there in his black hoodie brought up a different reaction than what he had been prepared for. Simmering anger coiled in his gut like twisting snakes. Dean glared at the younger man.
This gave Sam pause. Blinking in confusion, he stopped a couple feet away.
Much to his own surprise, Dean's anger was not volatile. While he silently seethed, there was no need to attack. "Tell me why, Sammy." Even his voice remained calm and under control.
Sam shrugged. He looked passed Dean at the park around them. In the mid-day heat everything seemed to droop.
"That's not good enough." At his side, Dean's fists clenched. "Tell me why you would poison your soul. Why did you believe that demon whore over me?"
"I thought..." Sam trailed off with a sigh. He still refused to meet Dean's glare.
"You thought? You thought what? Tell me!" When there was still no response, Dean took a heavy step towards his brother. "You just thought it was okay to screw some demon whore while I rotted in hell? That it didn't matter any more? Did my sacrifice mean nothing to you?"
"I didn't ask you to make that deal, Dean!" As he screamed back, Sam put a finger to his chest to emphasize his point. "If you hadn't noticed, I was dead!"
Scowling, Dean threw up his hands. "Why the hell do you think I made it? You're my brother. I literally gave up everything to get you a second chance. That is how much you mean to me, you damned idiot! Why can't you get that through your thick skull?"
This caused Sam to clamp his mouth shut. Looking away, he put his hands in the front pocket of his hoodie.
"Oh, no, you are not doing that. Not here, not any more!" Stepping forward, Dean grabbed the other by his shoulder. He jerked him around so that they were facing each other once more. "I asked you a question, and I want to know the answer! You are going to tell me why you did it, now!"
"Why does it matter?" Now screaming, Sam got up in Dean's face. He had had enough and wasn't going to take it any more. "It's done and over with. You were right, as always, Dean. Is that what you want to hear?"
Dean snorted. "That's not good enough. Not this time, Sammy." He refused to back down. Meeting his brother's outraged look with one of his own, he raised his chin. "What was so god damned convincing that you thought 'hey, may be sucking demon blood and corrupting my soul isn't such a bad price to pay'? Was it the fact that dead bitch could help you get your rocks off while doing it?"
Eyes narrowing, Sam's nostrils flared as he exhaled. "Do you really want to know?"
In a fit of anger, Dean smacked him in the shoulder. "Screw the dramatics and tell me already!"
"It's because you're a whiney little bitch!" Shoving his brother back, Sam snarled with all his repressed rage. "Ever since you came back from hell, it's just one pathetic act after another. You're weak!" He hit Dean again, driving him backwards. "How can you even stand to look at yourself any more?" He shoved Dean harder this time, enough to send him stumbling.
Dean maintained his balance with a smirk. "Projecting much, princess?"
"Don't even try turning this back on me, Dean." Pointing a long finger, Sam took a menacing step towards his brother.
"I know what this is really about. You couldn't get it up without the demon blood, much less screw your black-eyed girlfriend." Snickering, Dean raised an eyebrow and cocked his head. The very grin on his lips oozed sarcasm. "They were right, you were nothing but an insecure pussy without someone else's blood in your veins. Not good enough in your own right. That made you easy pickings for that demon whore and her master. You're the one who's pathetic!"
It was the smartass grin that finally broke Sam. Screaming his rage, he charged. He brought his fists up to punch his brother. His first swing struck the other man in the shoulder. The next moment found him grabbed by the front of his sweater. Sam was expecting a punch and braced himself.
That action was his final mistake.
Fisting his hands in Sam's hoodie, Dean picked him up. The force of his anger gave him a manic strength to swing the giant ass.
Fear caused Sam's eyes to go wide. "Dean, stop! What are you doing?"
Holding Sam high, Dean threw his head back so that he could bite out, "I forgive you for being a big, stupid son of a bitch!" With that, he dropped his brother in the fountain.
Sam screamed as he fell in to the thigh high water. The resulting impact sent an explosion of water every where. It splashed the ground and sidewalk all around the fountain. He came up screaming as steam rose from his body.
The shrill cry of his brother in pain caused Dean to try and step back in shock, but he found himself rooted in place. Panic gripped his chest. He longed to reach out and pull him from the fountain, yet that something held him firm. So great was the urge that his hands shook. It didn't matter as long as he was frozen.
Floating in the water, Sam writhed in an attempt to get away from the pain. It was to no avail as it was everywhere, soaking through his clothes. He screamed as more steam seemed to burst from his skin. Fire raced through him making his body feel as if it had burned. Then, just as suddenly as it had started, the pain was gone.
For a moment, he lay there gasping, unable to speak. When he was able to gather enough air to speak, he opened his eyes. The sight of his stricken brother made him frown. "Dean?"
It was almost like a spell had been broken. Dean was suddenly able to move and he raced to the fountain. He didn't wait for Sam to reach him before grabbing and pulling him out. It took some effort, but he managed to tug the entire length of his brother from the water.
Exhausted, they collapsed to the ground beside the fountain.
Holding his brother close, Dean lowered his chin to the top of Sam's head. "I'm sorry, Sam. I have no idea what came over me."
Clutching at Dean, Sam just shook his head. It didn't matter. Confusion and fatigue made him unable to speak. So, he took a shuddering breath and let the older man hold him.
For a full minute, they just sat there holding one another.
A fierce need to protect the man in his arms came over Dean. Alarmed at what might have caused this, he looked about for a threat. Much to his horror and surprise, there was an audience.
Several people had some how appeared around them. Most of them were openly staring at them. A couple were on their knees, eyes closed and praying. One woman was holding herself crying as she stared.
A moment later, Dean realized he was wrong. They weren't staring at them. They were looking at him.
Bristling at the attention, he straightened to his full height, well as much as kneeling with his brother in his arms let him. This caused an almost collective gasp in his onlookers. It was the one from his brother that drew his attention, though.
Wide eyed and pale, Sam stared at Dean as if he had two heads. He raised one shaky hand to place it against the other's cheek. His touch was gentle, almost hesitant. "Dean?"
"Yeah?" Confusion made Dean's tone almost a harsh whisper.
"You're glowing, man" Sam took another pained breath.
"What?" Eyebrow raised, Dean searched himself over. There was nothing out of the ordinary with his chest and arms. All he found was that his best leather jacket was now soaked. "You need your eyes checked."
There was no response.
Looking to Sam's face, Dean sighed. Holding his now unconscious brother, he dropped his head to his chest.
In the silence that followed, he could hear the voices of the crowd. Through the prayers and whispers of disbelief, he heard the sobbing of the one woman. That made up his mind of what he was going to do.
Bending down a little further, he slid an arm under Sam's knees. It took a great deal of effort, but he managed to lift his brother up and get to his feet. Dean swayed a little under the strain and weight before he started the long trek to the Impala. He hadn't realized how far he had gotten in his effort to flee Sam's questions.
Now, he was cursing Sam doubly. The big ass weighed a ton!