Author: Ash Engel PM
Destiel: Prompted by Safety Suit's "What If" Set in a loose S4 world, Dean & Sam are having a tiff and the only company he's got is Cas. Until, of course, Cas confesses. Now they're both struggling with a confession that might just shatter their bond.Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance/Angst - Dean W. & Castiel - Chapters: 4 - Words: 9,487 - Reviews: 5 - Favs: 6 - Follows: 11 - Published: 04-29-12 - id: 8071220
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Dean should have sat down.
As Castiel's words faded into a memory in the air, Dean just stood there staring with both eyebrows arching up high on his face. His lips pursed slightly as his hands tightened around opposing arms, and no one said a word. They barely breathed.
Castiel's heart was racing, even as he looked away from the hunter to ease it.
His pulse pounded in his head and his hands didn't want to stay still. He balled them up, feeling nails slide over the sweaty insides of his palms before relaxing again and wishing that Dean would speak.
He knew this was a bad idea, but not saying anything at all.. He couldn't do it. Not forever.
Dean had a right to know what was going on, and honestly Cas just didn't want to be alone with his struggling love for the other any longer.
So he waited, staring at the floor and feeling the hair on the back of his neck prickle at the thought of some invisible guillotine hung over his head.
Finally, after the air was thick and stale and things were getting to the point that saying anything at all was beginning to be more awkward than the silence, Dean spoke.
"I don't suppose that's some kind of.. angel of the lord, god loves his children kind of meaning?" He said, half hesitant and half something Cas couldn't pinpoint. He dared to glance up to try and understand the waver in the Winchester's tone, but he was moving away, scooting to face his back to Cas before sitting down slowly.
Castiel couldn't speak.
Now was his chance, likely his last one, to take it back. To claim it was indeed just some "angel thing" and that his love was purely platonic and guarding. Not what it really was, which was selfish and a dash carnal and all-too-unholy.
Carefully he swallowed, balled his hands up again, then shook his head.
He wasn't a coward, or a liar. He meant what he said, just how he said it.
Dean deserved the truth.
Things were quiet for a long while yet again.
The hunter hadn't moved, and hadn't looked at Cas' movement, but he'd grabbed enough from the corner of his sight to know that no, it wasn't a figure or speech. It was painfully literal, and suddenly the only company he'd wanted for weeks felt uneasy.
Cas.. loved him.
Like.. loved him.
He didn't know what to do with that kind of information.
He was straight, for one, which make returning the feelings impossible. But Cas was an angel, genderless by technicality, so he could just get a female vessel..
But why even debate that if he wasn't interested? He liked Cas. As a friend, and a brother.
He was there when no one else was. He had faith in Dean when no one else did, and he'd thrown himself into literal hell just to drag Dean out.
Reminders of the pit and his own sins brought a sickening chill to his bones.
But it was easily ignored in lieu of the unbearably awkward situation.
Uneasily Dean looked away, opposite Cas, to a spot on the wall where the wallpaper was peeling.
Saying what Cas had said took guts. And vulnerability.
He didn't want to talk about his feelings (or lack thereof) but he also didn't want to offend the only friend he'd ever really held on to for more than a few days.
Unlike his past flings, Cas wasn't a passing amusement. Unlike Ellen and Joe, Cas was nearby and available and something about him was just.. safer than them.
It was an odd but obvious bond he cared about, but couldn't -wouldn't- define.
"Cas.. I.." Dean moved to stare at his hands, coiled in his lap and squirming slightly to fiddle his fingers around one another. He wasn't an articulate guy. But he needed precision to not fuck this up..
"I care about you. You're family to me, you know that." He couldn't bring himself to look at the angel, who stood silently by his side. Just like always.
"But I don't.. I don't think I..." Dean sighed roughly and slapped both hands onto his face before dragging down. This was why he never spoke from the heart. This chick-flick shit was so difficult.
"I just don't know.. What to say to that." He grunted. Green eyes dared to scrape over the bed's ruffled sheets, to the mixture of tan and black and blue where Cas was staring at him with that eerie gaze that went straight through him, peering into some invisible part of him for angel-eyes-only.
When neither of them said anything Dean was the first to look away.
Cas' head dropped shortly after in some broken looking nod.
"I see." He said quietly, with a tone Dean wanted to consider interested, like when he was learning about something foreign. But it was lighter than that. Shaky, almost.
He was trying to sound like this was some educational moment, but Dean could already tell what was behind that. For once Castiel was transparent, and behind the surface splayed out clearly was hurt.
Dean opened his mouth to speak, but the angel rose one hand and shook his head.
"Don't, Dean." He said while carefully looking at anything but the hunter.
"I was too forward. I apologize."
And he was gone. Just like that.
Just like every other goddamn time that left Dean feeling miserable and alone and half-afraid.
Because everyone left, and Cas always left in half a second with no time to react. And even if he always came back, the sudden disappearances always brought the cold idea of death into Dean's mind.
Cause people didn't die slow like in the movies, with tons of time to say goodbye.
One minute they were there, and in the next second the light was burnt out of their eyes and their heart was dead and all he had left was cold limp nothing to grasp at.
Dean stared at the empty spot on the floor for several long minutes before leaning back onto the bed and shutting his eyes. The world was ending. He needed to do something. But all he could manage to do was lay there and feel the earth turning under him, and wonder how much time he had before one day it wasn't there, and he was just left to fall.
Back into the pit.