Author: Kathey27 PM
Dean's never been all that good with feelings. / Or, Three weeks after Carthage you start a list. AU season 5. Dean/Castiel/Ruby.Rated: Fiction T - English - Angst/Hurt/Comfort - Dean W. - Words: 2,682 - Reviews: 4 - Favs: 4 - Follows: 1 - Published: 04-05-12 - Status: Complete - id: 7994792
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
A/N: This generated because of my own list. I once literally sat down and wrote out the name of every person I could remember ever dying on SPN. So far, I'm on person number 123. Morbid, I know but it helps somehow to take it all in and process or whatever. I'm weird, I know.
This started out as Dean/Castiel then I switched it to Dean/Ruby then finally Dean/Castiel/Ruby so sorry if it's a bit all over.
And I'm not really sure what this is so, *shrug* I hope you guys can make sense of it.
Disclaimer: I disclaim.
Catharsis: noun: the process of releasing, and thereby providing relief from, strong or repressed emotions.
Three weeks after Carthage you start a list.
You get a sheet of paper and start a list and it goes on for sheets and sheets and the pen starts to bleed and then it runs out so you get more sheets of paper and another pen and write and write and write.
You write all the names of those who have died for you and your cause. Who've died for Team Free Will and choices and freedom and everything else they'll never get to taste because they're dead and gone.
(mom dad jess andy ash jo ellen adam pamela victor nancy meg masters casey bela samuel deanna jimmy – )
The pages each seem a mile long.
You take up smoking.
The apocalypse is nigh and you're riding around with a distant brother, a falling angel and an upside down demon.
You wonder how you've lasted this long without it.
To accompany the ashes and smoke that fill your lungs you start running.
It's at the crack of dawn while Cas is off looking for a father that doesn't want to be found and Sam is sleeping away and fighting the call of Ruby's blood and Ruby herself is sleeping away and trying not to think about the last time her and Sam were left alone, how he had attacked her. (Bled her, kissed her…touched her).
You run for miles and the air is crushing your lungs and your legs are burning and there's sweat everywhere but you keep going because when you finally do stop, it feels so damn good.
The drinking stops.
You look at a bottle of whiskey and the nausea hits like never before and then you're hurtling the bottle across the empty motel room.
You look at a bottle of gin and the pain hits like never before and then you're rushing to the bathroom and leaning over the toilet bowl.
You look at a bottle of wine and the indifference hits like never before and then you're out of the room and running until you collapse.
The tremors and shakes and stomach pains are worth never feeling the nausea pain indifference again.
Ruby notices first because despite how neither of you acknowledge it she's somehow become your closest friend. Over Cas over Sam over Bobby over everyone because she's been to HELL too and when the nightmares come and the pleads for help from the phantom pain come she's the one there soothing it all away.
Ruby notices first after another one of your runs and she's there on your bed, gazing at you with pain and love in her eyes and she takes your hand and holds it in hers.
It's (not) enough.
Castiel notices next because despite how socially awkward the poor thing is he's your friend and it's because of you that he's learning what actual feelings are. He reached in and gripped you tight and raised you and f re e d you. He was there too with Ruby and they both know that when you shiver it's from the memories and not the cold.
Castiel notices next after a short, simple hunt and he comes to you while you're by your baby and gazes at you with those deep blue eyes and you know he can feel you drowning.
It's (almost) enough.
Sam doesn't notice it (at all).
The Impala's floors are filled up with cigarette boxes and stubs and unopened week old bottles and you try to find it in yourself to care more but all you feel now ishollow.
Sam doesn't (ever) mention anything and Ruby just looks at you with those eyes and Cas knows better than to try.
With the running and the smoking and the teetotalism you start to have time for things other than taking care of Sammy and worrying about Cas and smiling at Ruby.
But you've never been all that good with spare time because you're you and you've never really had the time before to want more or be more and if you really think about it, the last time you had any free time had been the night of the big Stanford fight and look how well that turned out?
Let's add into the equation Lucifer who likes to poke his head into your dreams too because despite Sammy's beliefs, you apparently matter in terms of Lucifer's endgame.
You take up drawing.
You suck at drawing and keep losing the pencils so you stop.
You can't draw (Castiel found a picture, titled his head and asked why you were trying to draw a house. It was the Impala) and you can't sing (Ruby chucks the remote at you and calls you Queen. It wasn't a compliment) and you can't drink (your stomach churns at the sight of a bottle) and you can't sleep (Lucifer's hands are gentler than Alastair's could ever be) so you run.
You keep the list with you and add new names and then cross out names only to re-add them later because everyone who's on there deserves to be on there and you know this because you killed them all.
Ruby plucks the cigarette from your lips and eyes it for a moment before placing it on hers and inhaling deeply. She keeps your gaze and the smoke curls around her like a halo.
She asks why you stopped drawing.
You throw her onto the bed and she's gone in the morning.
Sam notices when Ruby goes missing because despite the fact that she's your best friend he loves her too despite that little incident with the blood and the floor and tears and the almost –
Sam notices when Ruby goes missing and asks where she went and when you shrug and say "away" the look Cas throws at you is almost as piercing as the burns you get when you run.
Castiel goes running with you.
The angel actually takes off his suit, gets into a pair of sweats and t-shirt and goes running with you.
You run for miles and miles and he doesn't break a single sweat and by the time you collapse onto the gravel he's a few feet away and then he's looking back and thathollow returns.
You don't take anymore cold showers.
Despite popular belief HELL wasn't always hot. It was cold, blistering, achingly cold at times and those were the worst times.
The frostbite would set in slowly and surely and then Alastair would come and snap away at your bones and lick the ice from your chest and break off limps and play with the blood.
When you shower now, the water's blistering hot.
Ruby comes back like you knew she would because she's she and you're you and together, really, there's an us.
She comes back and slides into bed with you and holds yours hands above your head and scowls down at you and then whispers "okay" and that's all there is to it really.
Sam notices after your 336th pack of cigarettes and he comes in with a black bag filled with all the junk from the floor of your baby and looks at you with those sad sad eyes and asks why.
You inhale one last time and blow the smoke into his face.
It's your last cigarette (for a while).
You go shopping for a head stone for every person on your list.
Victor Henriksen. Good Cop, Would've Made An Even Better Hunter. Oh Well.
Jessica Moore. Beloved Daughter, Sister And Fiancé. Fuck You, Karma.
Joanna Beth Harvelle. The One I Could Have Had Everything With.
Pamela Barnes. Wish I Could Have Had The Chance To Feel Your Ass Up Too.
Meg Masters. Oops.
Ash. Sorry I Never Had The Chance To Learn Your Last Name.
Ellen Harvelle. Amazing Person, Woman, And Bar Keeper. The Best Second-Mother I Could Have Ever Ask For.
Abigail "Bela" Talbot. Good Fuckin' Riddance.
John Winchester. He Did The Best He Could, Fuck Off.
Adam Milligan. I Wish I Had Had The Chance To Know Your Favorite Color.
Mary Winchester. Great Wife, Amaz –
You leave when you can't feel your fingers anymore.
Castiel finds the list and spots his own name written down twice and Ruby's three times and you shake your head because if you think too much memories start to flood back and then there's Chuck, telling you how Cas had exploded like a watermelon and stoner Cas walking dead into a trap despite knowing it was a trap and Lilith sending Ruby right back to Hell and Alastair killing her besides you over and over and Zachariah making her human with a flick of his wrist and then stealing her lungs and stoner Cas telling you about how she died trying to protect the camp and then –
Cas' hand falls on your shoulder. You read his gaze.
You lean forward and crush your mouth to his. It's sloppy and hurts and too messy and the angel's gone before you can even pull away.
"Heard you kissed an angel" is Ruby's greeting and where the Hell is Sam when you need him to be distracting her?
She asks casually and slowly and you get then that she isn't mad, just curious so you nod and the twinkle that slips into her eyes is one you haven't seen since last Summer.
"That's pretty hot" is Ruby's only response.
(She lets you pull her into the shower and use boiling hot water on both your bodies).
"Is this a mid-life crisis thing" is what Sam wants to know.
"I'm fucking thirty-one" is your answer.
He scowls and that's when you realize that this isn't about the teetotalism or the running or the cigarettes or the list (which Sam has yet to ask about) but about the whole Ruby Cas and you love triangle enigma thing you've got going on.
You shrug next and grab a newly bought box of cigarettes. You take one out and light it before he can say anything.
The ashes and smoke are back.
Castiel returns and gazes at you with deep blue eyes and traces your face with his fingertips and his breath ghosts along your neck and you wonder how it's possible to want them both at the same time.
Ruby buys you a sketchpad and a pencil case to keep everything in.
The hollow disappears for a quick second before returning.
You catch Ruby and Cas talking and she's smiling so brightly it touches her eyes and the angel's actually smirking, something you haven't seen since the first day you met him and they're leaning into each other and for a second you don't see a demon and an angel, mortal enemies, but two people who could mean everything to you if you let them.
You go back to the Impala and continue the list.
You run during the Spring and it's hot and sticky and then it's raining and you come back to the motel room shivering and wet and there might or might not be actual tears leaking from your eyes but that's okay because Ruby's there and she's pulling your clothes off and drying you and putting you to bed and then Castiel is there gazing at you both under the covers, huddled for warmth and tilts his head just so and there's your answer.
Ruby takes the cigarettes from you and holds them tightly in her hands and tells you "these things will fucking kill you" with no twinkles in her eyes.
You examine a cigarette in your hands and then break it in half and toss it out the Impala window when it starts to smell.
The ashes and smoke stop.
Ruby finds the list and ghosts her fingers over all the names, those she knew and those she never got the chance to know and leans into your chest.
"Where's your name" she asks.
Cas comes running with you one more time and this time he keeps pace with you and when your legs give out under you, his arms feel safer than the gravel ever could.
The running stops. (It doesn't feel as good as it used to).
Lucifer taunts your dreams with memories of cold places and half forgotten memories of another place, another lifetime.
You stop sleeping.
Sam buys you a bottle of scotch.
Your stomach only hurts a little before Ruby is taking it away and downing it herself.
Cas slips into the bed one night with you and Ruby and instead of you leaning towards one over the other they both are holding you tight.
You go to sleep. (Lucifer stays gone).
You catch Ruby pressing a quick kiss to Castiel's mouth.
It's fast and she's drunk and the angel doesn't seem to mind so much as he tries to find some way to zap her back to the motel room without anybody noticing.
You watch them together and you can see the next few years panned out right there. They look beautiful.
You pick up some whiskey the next day.
(You finish the entire bottle before the day's over).
You continue to draw and the Impala still looks like a house but you've got a knack for landscapes and you sketch the bowels of HELL and it looks like a fucking winter wonderland and when you show it to Ruby she starts to cry so you stop.
The sketchpad and pencil case are placed besides your dad's jacket in the bottom of the trunk.
Castiel traces your fingers with his and looks at you with wonder and want and all the things left unsaid.
You kiss him again.
He doesn't fly away.
"What are we doing" Ruby whispers one night while she's on your right side and Cas is on your left and all three of you are staring up at the reflective ceiling before you.
You frown and wait for hollow to come.
You slide one hand onto hers and the other where Cas' heart should be if he were living and smirk.
"Who the fuck cares" is your best response.
It's good enough for them.
Sam finds the list and reads each name lowly and slowly and then he's meeting your gaze and his eyes are strong and there and you feel a part of you return.
"Dean" he breathes. "stop".
It all doesn't hurt like it used to.
You burn the list. (The names are etched into your memory anyways).