It takes Dean two weeks and four states to find it, the place where he’ll stage the most important conversation–confession?–of his life.
It took Dean two weeks and four states to find it, the place where he was gonna stage the most important conversation of his life.
More like, a confession. Or an autopsy. Or the long, lonely record of his broken heart.
One that he hoped Cas would be anxious to fix.
There wasn’t a moment of truth, some bolt of divine revelation. It was more like a recognition. One day, he’d heard Cas settle beside him on the front seat, and his first thought had been: hey, it’s Cas. The dude who I love.
And it was.
After that, things got a little weird, for Dean. Because Cas was around a lot, and they were alone a lot, and suddenly it was like a middle school dance inside the Impala, or in their crummy motel rooms, or in the middle of 1977. Dean kept over-reading, kept trying to interpret, intuit every sigh, or raised eyebrow, or proximity alarm.
At some level, he thought Cas had to know what he was doing. That nobody, angel or otherwise, was that freaking clueless about personal space.
He had to know. He did.
But the next moment, Cas would move away like nothing had happened and Dean would kick himself, curse himself for being such a sentimental douche.
Because there was no way Cas knew what kind of effect he had on Dean when he did dumb shit like breathe the same air or give over that half-smile or just listen so fucking hard that Dean could practically see his brainwaves.
But it was never steady, his reading of Cas, and so he found himself drifting closer and closer to yes, to he wants you, to he loves you, than he wanted to.
And it would have been easier to ask, maybe, to just say something about it already, and if it were anyone else but Cas he would have. Woulda had no problem making the first move and risking rejection because Dean Winchester, in general, didn’t get rejected, didn’t get turned down once he turned up his eyes and let his mouth go soft and dropped his voice again, just a little. That was more than enough to get him through most doors and, anyway, Dean didn’t have to chase, not really.
But with Cas, it was different, and so he didn’t.
In truth, he wanted to live with the hope for a while, to swim in the water of maybe, possibly? rather than dive off the cliff into “no fucking way.” He was afraid of having his heart hammer smashed with one ill-timed “I do not understand that reference” from Cas on the heels of his own confession, and so he said nothing. Kept his trap shut and watched. Observed. Tried to read the runes in Cas’ face, in his tone, in the lines of his body.
He dug new grooves in his palms from not touching Cas, which was one of the hardest things he’d ever not done because his hands ached for it, that touch. For the slide of water-resistant fabric under his fingers and the catch of a bad Windsor knot. It was weird, in a way, because he’d never touched Cas to begin with, not really, but for some reason his hands knew what they were missing. What he was.
But still, he stayed quiet. Still, he said nothing. For weeks into months, even as the end of the world came near. The Apocalypse.
And it wasn’t until one day in May, when he almost put Baby in a ditch, lost in a semi-explicit daydream involving Cas and a washing machine and some really bad Snuggle Bear innuendo, that he realized: fuck. It wasn’t going away, what he felt, and neither was Cas, thank god, so he either had to resolve it pronto or spend the rest of his second life until the end of the fucking world regulating his thoughts and keeping a poker face whenever Cas was around which was like every five minutes and that just was not the way he’d planned his second go at the End of Days, quite frankly. His outline included a lot more sex than angst, damn it, and he realized it was up to him to get with the program. To at least see if the program was possible.
So he started scoping, that same week, for just the right place to take Cas, to tell Cas how he felt. What he wanted. The sun in the Midwest then was warm and sweet, the smell of new life and a thousand flowers in the air and so, he thought. Why not?
He drove out at night once Sam was settled—once he was sure Sam was too busy with demonology or Doctor Who or his laptop to wander off. He drove out past the edges of a handful of sleepy towns, main streets giving way to back roads, to farms, to fields. Looking for just the right spot. The one where he could bring himself to say: I love you, wing boy, so why don’t we ditch the UST and fuck like bunnies in the back seat?
Ok, maybe not that, exactly.
It took him two weeks and four states, but finally, he found it, this tumbled-down apple orchard in Indiana. It looked like it hadn’t been harvested in years, but the trees were strong and the blossoms pink and there were no motherfucking scarecrows around. It was beautiful and deserted, peaceful as all get out, and close enough to the damn road that if it all went to hell, if Cas just blinked or laughed or patted him on the shoulder and said, “I’m sorry, Dean,” he’d be able to run for home, for Sam, right away.
He purposely kept Sam out of if. Was afraid of the sympathy and brotherly hugs and long, soul-searching looks he knew would come if it went bad, if Sam knew. Convinced himself he was fucking James Bond about the whole thing, the spy to end all spies, even with a bleeding heart, that he’d kept his poker face in place the whole goddamn time, the whole year, practically.
But that next night, as he was heading out, mouthing something about yet another drive, Sam unwound himself from the couch and pushed a small paper bag into his hands.
“Dude,” he said, all heartfelt and puppy-faced. “It’s gonna go good. Just be safe.”
And it took Dean a second to process what he’d said, the box and the tube that Sam was driving into his palm, and shit. Oh shit.
“Uh,” he said, and Sam just laughed and clapped him on the shoulder and told him to say hi to Cas.
“Right,” Dean spluttered. “Right.”
He flung himself out the door and bolted to the Impala. Sat there for a minute, got back to breathing right, and wondered where he’d slipped up. If he was really that transparent.
But then he let himself grin, a little, let the gameface come into view, because maybe Sam knew something that he didn’t. Something good, something that seemed to involve lube, and putting that together with Cas made Dean a very happy man on the drive out. Very.
Because, maybe. Just maybe. He wasn’t gonna crash and burn.
He parked her careful, just under the trees but no so low that she’d get scratched. Far enough in so they wouldn’t be disturbed—for better or worse.
He climbed out, parked his ass on the hood, and prayed.
He heard that flutter and opened his eyes to see Cas right the fuck there, right in front of him, looking nine kinds of rumpled, like Dean had summoned him out of bed.
“Dean,” Cas said. “I am here.”
“Yeah, I can see that,” Dean said. “Um. Hi.”
He stared at Cas for a minute, willing himself to just say it already, to just go ahead and—
“Why have you called me?” Cas said, sounding more than a little peeved.
Dean blinked. Maybe he’d interrupted angel bingo night, or something.
“Um,” he said again, getting that rush of middle school glitter back through his veins. “Cas. You know we’re friends, right? I mean, I think of you as a friend, or—wait, that’s not what I mean, exactly. It’s just that—“
Cas shook his head, and yeah, he looked pissed.
“I have much work to which I should be attending,” he said, taking a step back into the dark. “Perhaps we can discuss—this another time.”
Dean hopped off the hood. “Cas! Hold on. Look, I’m—I suck at this, ok, I—“
Don’t know what I’m supposed to say. Don’t know how. So I’ll just—
He gave up on confessing and kissed Cas instead.
It was like smooching cardboard, at first, because Cas just stood there, dumb and solid and flailing, a little, and Dean got really fucking scared, for a second.
Then Cas murmured something that sounded like “Finally” and opened his mouth, and yes. Oh, yes. He grabbed Dean’s tongue with his teeth, Dean’s body in his arms, and kissed like there was no freaking tomorrow.
Which, to be fair, wasn’t too far from the truth, and if Dean listened hard, he probably could’ve heard some seals popping, but he focused everything on Cas instead.
And then something changed.
It went from a mutual exchange, a happy back-and-forth, to an act of aggression. From a yaw, pitch, and roll right down into re-entry, because Cas got grabby as hell.
He shoved Dean back, let him knock into the hood, and then snagged him, worked his fingers into Dean’s waist and shoved their bodies together.
“What were you waiting for, Dean? Something in writing?” he groaned, his mouth falling over Dean’s chin, his throat. “Should I have asked Sam for your hand?”
But he didn’t let Dean answer, just swooped back up and fucked his tongue into Dean’s mouth until Dean didn’t want to answer. Couldn’t really remember the question, anyway, until Cas came back up for air, hissing:
“But you took so long! I do not understand. Why did you wait?”
He dropped his hand, his fingers blooming over Dean’s cock.
“I don’t—” Dean choked, spreading his legs so Cas could snag his zipper. “Understand, Cas. What do you—?”
“Don’t have much time!” Cas growled, yanking and pulling and hello. Yes.
Dean arched into Cas’ hand, which was warm and hard and fuck, was Cas squeezing him tight, it was—
“What was I supposed to do?” Cas moaned, bitchy and commanding all at once. “Not fair, Dean, you made me wait so long, when all I wanted was—“
And his voice was going salad in Dean’s ears, because his fist was flying over Dean’s very happy cock, and Dean could barely hear him over the roar of his heart, and—
“Fuck, Cas,” he managed. “Shut up and suck my cock. Come on.” And now he was whining, his voice pitched way out of normal, but Cas didn’t seem to mind.
He just grinned at Dean in the dark, like a friggin jack-o-lantern with an iron fist, and dropped to the ground, still jerking as he slid his mouth over, damn it, over and “c’mon, down,” Dean tried to say, but all he could do was bang his hand into the back of Cas’ head until Cas laughed, low and sullen, and pulled Dean into his mouth.
It was sloppy and all over the place, Cas’ tongue curling and his cheeks sucking, his teeth scraping and his throat rolling, and they were both still dressed and the whole thing felt kind of dirty but, hell. Dean was right there with him. It felt so fucking good and so totally bizarre that for a second, Dean thought he was gonna embarrass humanity and blow his top right then, in the dark pull of Cas’ mouth.
But he rallied, got his sea legs back, and just rolled with it, letting his body meet Cas’ and reveling in how good he felt, this beautiful creature that had saved him. Revived him. Given him one more fucking chance at life and if this was the only reason, the only night he had left to live, Dean was pretty fucking great with that, thanks.
But then Cas pulled away, fell backwards into the dirt, and Dean flailed, wondering if he’d just missed the angel bat signal or something.
Cas glared at him, wild and shaking in the dark, and said: “Want you. Want to fuck you, Dean.”
“Oh my god yes,” Dean blurted. “Yeah.”
“But not here,” Cas said.
In a moment, they were—someplace else. Someplace white.
“Someplace safe,” Cas breathed in his ear.
And then the aggressive was back, and before Dean could get his bearings, Cas had torn his shirt off, yanked down his pants, and tossed him onto the bed. Oh. Right. A bed.
And it was kinda dark, where they were. There was enough light to see by, enough for his brain to register that they were in a room, that there were windows and a door. That Cas was staring at him, the way he had a hundred times before, but this time Dean could feel that gaze like it was a physical thing, a sword hanging in the air between them, or something.
Something Cas could cut him with, that look. Could hurt.
Cas dropped his coat, peeled the layers away. Slid up beside Dean in this was that was totally aquiline. Smooth. Confident. A little scary, in his ease.
He sent the sword over Dean’s body. Peeled the layers away, until Dean was shaking. Shivering. Reaching for Cas and saying “please” in this voice he’d never heard before. That he didn’t know he had in him.
Something shifted in Cas’ face. Something not entirely pleasant, and he said: “Roll over.”
And the next minutes were this long, shuddering pool of kisses, of Cas’ mouth over his shoulder, his spine. His fingers digging into Dean’s sides. His teeth in the curve of Dean’s hip. His lips at the base of Dean’s spine.
It wasn’t gentle. Or sweet. Or tentative, or any of the things that Dean thought Cas might be, in bed. It was demanding, rough and anxious, Cas moaning into his skin and then panting, biting and sucking and “Why, Dean? Why? So long. Too long. Waited. Waited for you.”
He canted up to lick at Dean’s neck and pushed his cock into Dean’s back. “Want,” he groaned. “Want you. Dean. Wanted you.”
Dean rocked himself into the sheets, leaned his head back and said: “Yes. Please. Please.”
Cas moved away, came back with something slick. Worked his fingers into Dean, mouth across his back, pushing that litany into Dean’s skin:
“Why. Wanted. Waited.”
Kept it up as he shoved his cock in, too fast. Too hard. Not enough. Chanting:
“Why. Wanted. Waited.”
His hand over Dean’s cock, tugging, his hips stuck in steady rhythm. Dean’s head spinning, his body screaming, his heart aching.
Cas moaned and dropped himself over Dean’s back, fucking into Dean hard. So hard.
Then Dean felt Cas’ lips on the back of his neck, on his ear.
“Could have,” Cas sobbed. “Could have had this, Dean. For so long. We could have. Why did you wait? Why did you have to—?“
And he came, pushed this hot wet into Dean and went to pieces over him, and Dean was glad he couldn’t see. Didn’t have to watch Cas’ face.
But his body felt different, wasn’t as freaked out about it all with Cas’ hand still locked on his cock, and he kept thrusting, kept grinding into Cas’ fist, and Cas made this sad little noise in his ear and jerked him, hard, until he shot into the sheets and pitched over, Cas still buried in his back.
After a while, Cas rolled away and they lay there. Separated. Not touching.
It was everything that Dean’d wanted and nothing like it all and he was terrified. And sad. So freaking sad, then.
“Cas,” he said. Not looking. “You ok?”
He felt Cas’ hand on his shoulder, stroking. Soft.
“No,” Cas said, the tears still heavy in his voice. “I am not. We have lost too much time. The end is too close, now. And that grieves me, knowing what we might have had.”
Dean turned his head, opened his eyes.
“Cas,” he said again. Pleading. “Please. There’s still time. We could—“
“We cannot,” Cas said, his fingers drifting to a halt. “If things are different. If we can stop Lucifer. Perhaps. But not now.”
Dean’s mouth moved before he could stop it.
“But I love you,” he said, his voice jagged.
Cas smiled. Touched his face.
“I love you,” he said. “Maybe that will mean something again, in the future. But now—“
And Dean knew what was coming a split second before it happened, started to say “No!”
But when the word came out, he was alone. Back in the apple grove, tucked into his jacket, his boots, his jeans. Alone.
He put his head on the steering wheel for a while. Let the tears come. And then, when he was ready, he turned the key and headed for home. To Sam. The end of the freaking world.
To the start of another day without Cas.