I do not own Supernatural or any of its characters. I make no monetary profit off of this story.
"If this is to end in fire
Then we should all burn together
Watch the flames fly high into the night…" – I See Fire by Ed Sheeran
Chapter 30: I See Fire
The iron gate was slammed shut and warded everywhere but the locked door where an angel stood guard. Meg stumbled back to her feet after having been tossed in and looked around before glaring at the angel.
"Why is it always you assholes causing trouble?" she snapped, a panic rising in her, knowing that the boys had no idea what was coming.
The angel said nothing so Meg stepped forward and kicked at the iron gate, almost busting the latch. She was rewarded by the angel picking up a bucket of holy water and dousing her in it. Screaming as she dropped back and away, Meg landed on the stone ground against the back wall, shaking as the burning slowly faded away.
"Fuck you and all you stand for, winged dick." She grumbled, leaning her head back against the cold stone.
Sam sat down near Lucifer, watching him curiously for a few moments. Something in his gut was twisting, it was hard to focus on just what it was, like it was too far off in the distance to matter. The twisting continued, trying to warn him this wasn't what it seemed, trying to make him back away. Still too distant to pay it much attention, Sam hardly noticed.
"Why do you need me to get Dean to find me? What purpose would that serve except being a problem?" asked Sam, brows furrowed at the devil.
"Because we need him here. He's much easier to draw out than Cain. The mark on his arm and what he can do with it is vital to our plans." Replied Lucifer, turning to give Sam his full attention.
"You're not telling me everything." Blurted Sam, narrowing his gaze slightly. His trust was starting to waver, something just didn't feel right after hearing that answer. Lucifer nodded slowly for a moment then smiled.
"Not much gets past you, Sam. I greatly value that."
"What are you not telling me, Lucifer?" snapped Sam, large chest puffing out slightly, instinctively preparing to fight. The devil held up his hands.
"Calm down. We are friends, Sam. Two sides of the same coin."
"Tell me the truth."
"You really want the truth?" asked Lucifer, stepping closer, trying to regain the slight trust he'd just lost.
"That's what I just said." Stated Sam, jaw slightly clenched and gaze firm on the devil's.
"I'm going to offer him what I offered you. The chance to truly be himself. The chance to mend things with you and join us. I am the source of all the power he has, I wish him no harm, Sam. I am going to offer him the chance to embrace all sides of himself, as you have." Explained Lucifer, his expressions frighteningly relaxed as he sold the lie. Sam stared at him for a moment, looking for any sort of tell and then nodded.
"I don't really know if it'll work, he's stubborn."
"Offering him the chance is what matters, isn't it?"
"Yeah, I guess so. I would be lying if I said I didn't miss him." Stated Sam quietly as he sat down.
"It'll give me hope, Sam. If you and Dean can truly be brothers again, then perhaps myself and Michael can." Added Lucifer, outright lying again. He knew damn well that if Michael ever got out of that cage he was going to receive the worst asswhooping his big brother had ever given him.
"I hope he agrees." Sam said softly, thinking of Dean and regretting being as violent as he had been. Wondering where his brother was and just what he might be doing right now.
Lucifer watched him for several moments, becoming a little concerned that perhaps his work was wearing off. He ignored the slight anxiety and went back to his planning.
Castiel felt close again, possibly closer than last time as he zoned in on a power source that could only belong to an archangel. He stopped where he was, feeling no change in the surge. Whoever it was, they were still here. Here being this abandoned beach that appeared to be somewhere near the Bahamas.
The moonlight reflected off of the blue water as waves gently rolled in to kiss the sandy beach. Cas started walking, looking for signs of life. Suddenly, something clamped around his ankle and he was hauled upside down, dangling from one of the trees, swaying back and forth. Whatever was holding him wasn't entirely physical.
Cas felt his shirt come untucked from his pants and tried to stop his blade from falling out of his jacket when he heard a very familiar voice.
"Aren't you a little stuffy for chillin on a beach, pretty boy?" asked the voice, pure amusement in his tone. Cas straightened out his head and found himself staring at Gabriel. In the same vessel he was last in, wearing just swim trunks at the moment and an ornery grin.
"You are alive…" stated Cas, staring at him.
"Of course I'm alive. I am the Trickster. Duh. Anyway, nice happy trail, bro." chuckled Gabriel before looking out at the water.
"Nice…what? Will you let me down, please?" asked Castiel, thoroughly confused and becoming uncomfortable.
"I kinda like you dangling from your ankle." Stated Gabriel, looking at Cas for a few more moments then snapping his fingers. Castiel dropped headfirst into the sand, standing up, trying to brush some of the sand off and not entirely succeeding.
"I've been looking for you. Why did you run from me?" asked Cas, stepping over.
"Because I like retirement, that's why. People obviously are supposed to be believing I'm dead."
"Lucifer doesn't believe you're dead." Replied Cas, brows furrowing when Gabriel laughed.
"Oh, yes, he does. You've been played, Cassy. Ever since you started looking for me, I've been taking a closer look at what's going on with him. You are just on the edge of a total shitstorm."
"What do you mean? This was a trick? A trap?"
"More like…a distraction. He knew he couldn't do what he's planning to do unless you were on a wild goose chase." Explained Gabriel, dropping onto a beach chair and picking up a margarita.
"What's he planning, Gabriel?" snapped Cas, feeling his heart sink into his gut, making him feel sick.
"To take over everything. Heaven, Hell, Earth… all of it. Using your boyfriends as pawns in the process. Rumor also has it that Crowley's going to be his permanent bitch. At least that's the game plan." Said Gabriel, ending his statement by taking a long drink and sighing happily.
Castiel stared at him, icy terror filling him at those words. He shook his head.
"No, Gabriel, please. You have to help me. We can't let this happen." Pleaded Cas, stepping over to help him up.
"What? No. I'm retired. Leave me alone. This is not my fight."
"Gabriel, you are the only archangel left that is available. Please, brother, you have to help me. Wouldn't it be easier to help now than to wait until he's taken over?" argued Castiel.
Gabriel heaved a sigh and set his drink down, still looking out at the water. The waves too calm tonight, as though giving a subtle warning of a massive storm on the horizon. He thought in silence for a few moments.
"What if he actually succeeds in killing me this time, Cas? Will it even be worth it?"
"You are older than I, you remember the mission Father gave us. Was it not to protect and defend those who cannot do so for themselves? The humans? Sam and Dean Winchester need our help."
"Those two aren't exactly human anymore. Not in the strictest sense." Stated Gabriel as he stood up and nodded at Cas with a tired sigh.
"You'll help me?"
"Yeah, I guess so. Someone oughta knock Luci down a peg, anyhow."
"Do you know what you're going to do?"
"Not exactly. But I know where to start." Replied Gabriel, grinning at Castiel.
Sam had been watching the clock, knowing it was only a few more hours before Lucifer would need him at his side. In order to avoid thinking too much, he'd laid down and closed his eyes, eventually drifting off. His dreams were filled with memories he'd never known he still had.
Before long, the sensation of being in the back of the Impala as John scolded Dean in the front seat shifted into something else. Something that was way too far back for him to have ever remembered before. The stench of burning flesh, smoke starting to fill his lungs, crackling of flames, and the sound of both his parents screaming. One in agony, the other in terror. He was staring directly up at his bleeding mother as flames engulfed her on the ceiling.
Sam's eyes suddenly snapped open. For the briefest second, he truly believed he'd see his mother directly on the ceiling. Or even Dean.
As consciousness drifted back into him, he sat upright and rubbed his face. Slowly finding that what woke him up wasn't the nightmare itself or even his panting and sense of terror.
The alarm clock radio was on next to him and blaring a song that was literally etched into every part of his brain. Before he could reach over and shut it off, someone started singing along. Someone who had managed to come in without waking Sam.
"Heat of the moment…" sang Gabriel, partially dancing as he strolled across the room.
"What the hell?..." blurted Sam, brows furrowed in utter confusion. He began to wonder if he was still asleep and dreaming.
"Rise and shine, Sammy!" shouted Gabriel, grinning at him as he stopped to lean against the dresser, eating a candy bar.
"What are you doing here? You're dead." Stated Sam, voice groggy from sleep as he made an annoyed face and ripped the alarm clock out of the wall.
"That's rude. Actually, I was never dead. Witness protection."
"Why the hell did you wake up me up like this? That's not funny! Asshole…." Grumbled Sam, standing up and glaring at the short angel.
"It's kinda funny, come on, Sam, I put a lot of work into that Mystery Spot mess." Retorted Gabriel, giving him a dirty look.
"What are you doing here? Alive or not, I don't care. Why are you here?" snapped Sam, almost growling at the angel. Gabriel finished his candy bar and tossed the wrapper into the trash can before standing up straight, eyes on Sam.
"You're in too deep, Jolly Green. I'm here to help you see the light and pull your stupid ass out of Lucifer's grasp."
"I'm not in Lucifer's grasp. I'm doing exactly what I want to do."
"Oh, whatever. He's got you by the balls and all he has to do is squeeze, Sam. Trust me, I've known him for a lot longer than you. He's my brother, remember?"
"You turned on him." Retorted Sam, no longer glaring but gaze still narrowed.
"No, I didn't. That was Michael."
"You never stepped in to help him or break it up, did you?"
"I tried, jackass! You tell me how easy it is to get those two assholes to stop tearing at each other's throats! You think I wanted my two big brothers trying to kill each other? You're not that stupid, Sam."
"You never defended him, Gabriel."
"Because he was being a spoiled brat. He still is. He wasn't the favorite anymore so he threw a bitchfit and corrupted humanity, broke daddy's favorite toy. I'm not sticking up for him for doing that. That's not what's really on your mind, anyway. You're just trying to make excuses for the shitstorm you're about to cause."
"Really? And what's that?" asked Sam, anger starting to boil in him, glaring again.
"Lucifer is going to take over everything. He's using you. You are his loyal dog, Sam. He's going to destroy everything, you need to wake up!"
"You been talkin to Dean, haven't you? Or maybe Crowley?" asked Sam, clenching his teeth when Gabriel rolled his eyes.
"What is it with you and them? Jealous or something? No, I've not talked to either of them. And for the record, neither need your permission to do the hanky panky together." Retorted Gabriel, he saw Sam snap and move at him after that and waved his hand, sending the large man into the opposite wall.
"You know that anger in your gut? That rage? That's how Lucifer is keeping you chained to him." Said Gabriel, watching Sam get back to his feet and glare.
"Get out. I might not win but I will fucking fight you." Growled Sam, something in him screaming to listen to Gabriel but his pride refusing. The little angel heaved a sigh.
"You're a fool. Just like Lucifer." Replied Gabriel before vanishing.
Dean rolled over in his sleep, in the direction he knew Crowley was but found that side of the bed empty. This caused him to slowly start to wake, yawning once before opening his eyes. He set his hand on the bed and found it was still a little warm where the king had been laying next to him.
"Crowley?..." asked Dean in a groggy tone before clearing his throat and rolling back over to glance around the room.
"Relax. I'm healed, I'm fine. I'm here." Answered Crowley as he pulled a clean suit jacket on, having clearly made a quick trip to get a new suit.
"What's goin on?" asked Dean, rubbing his face as he sat up.
"I've got an errand to run."
"Alright, where we goin?" asked Dean, getting out of bed and stretching.
"No, not we. Me. You need to find Sam. Make sure he's still alive. I don't know what Lucifer's doing to him but Sam's not in his right mind." Explained Crowley, stepping over and reaching up to cup the side of Dean's face.
"Where are you going, then? I don't like the idea of separating right now. It doesn't feel right." Stated Dean, brows furrowed but not shying from the gentle touch.
"I'm going to find Castiel. As much as he and I don't get along, we're going to need all the help we can get. I've got a lead on where he might be." Answered Crowley before leaning in and pressing lips to Dean's gently.
"Wait, wait, what if it's a trap? Don't you think Lucifer would assume you or me will go looking for Cas?" asked Dean, breaking the kiss, his instinct telling him something very bad is going to come of this.
"I've survived an awful lot, Dean, I'll be okay. I don't plan on leaving you any time soon. Trust me." Said Crowley, watching the worried expression on his lover's face. A moment of silence passed between them then Dean nodded.
"You fuckin better come back or I'll hunt your delicate ass down and give you a beating." Replied Dean before leaning in and touching their lips together again. He kept the kiss firm, just in case his instinct was right, just in case his fear knew something he didn't, just in case this was the last kiss they'd have the chance to share.
Crowley closed his eyes, returning the kiss just as passionately. He knew exactly how dangerous this was and all the risks, he had only downplayed it to try and ease Dean's fears. He himself was utterly terrified but he buried that down, expressing it only slightly in how desperately he returned their kiss.
"Relax. We'll meet back here soon enough and figure out our next move. I love you." Stated Crowley, smoothing a hand down his lover's chest once.
"No chick flick moments." Replied Dean with a small smile, the look in his eyes returning the affection. Crowley chuckled and then vanished.
Dean heaved a massive sigh and picked up the bottle of scotch, taking a drink before starting to get dressed. It wouldn't be hard for him to find Sam, it never was. He knew his brother better than anyone else.
Just as Crowley appeared at the last place his informant said Castiel had been, an injured demon limped towards him, covered in blood.
"S…sir…" stammered the demon, Crowley gave him a disgusted look and stepped aside so the creature didn't dirty up his suit at all.
"Where you mauled by a tiger?..." asked Crowley, keeping his distance still.
"Sir, the angel…he found me." Blurted the demon, Crowley sighed and rolled his eyes.
"Did I not tell you to stay hidden? Didn't I say to not underestimate Castiel? Do you ever listen to anything I say?"
"He knew you were watching when he found me. He has a message for you, sir." Stated the demon, looking a little like a scolded puppy at the way his King was reacting. Crowley's brows raised and he looked around cautiously before returning his gaze to the minion before him.
"Well? What is it?" asked Crowley, more than a little concerned by the horrified look on the demon's face.
Less than an hour after leaving, Dean had already tracked down where Sam was. Using the methods he'd always used when his little brother would run off.
He parked the Impala and walked to the door, picking the lock this time. He wasn't going to waste a single moment, Sam needed to see what was happening right now. Dean pushed the door open and walked in, letting it swing shut behind him.
"Sam?" he asked, seeing the bathroom light is on. His brother walked out of the bathroom and sighed.
"Come to fight with me again, Dean?" asked Sam, folding his arms.
"No. I need you to listen to me. You have to come with me. Right now. I'm not gonna change you, Sam. You wanna do demon blood? Fine. You wanna experiment with other powers? Fine. I don't care anymore. But I'm not gonna lose you." Explained Dean, walking towards his little brother.
"Lose me? I'm not dead, Dean. I'm just not pretending things are cool between us anymore."
"Sammy, please. Listen to me. You don't know what's going on, you don't know what you're being used for. Please come with me, we'll figure it out and kick it in the ass like we always do." Pleaded Dean, stopping right in front of Sam who now had a very confused expression on his face. Cutting through his pride was that voice that had been yelling in the back of his mind.
"What are you talking about?" asked Sam, sounding like himself for the first time since he'd tasted demon blood again.
"Lucifer. This is all a trick, Sam. He's using you. I don't know why but he is. Come with me, we'll meet up with Crowley and Cas. We'll fix this."
"You're… are you sure?" asked Sam, suddenly feeling sick to his stomach. Gabriel and Dean trying to tell him the same thing in one night couldn't be a coincidence. Something was massively wrong and he couldn't ignore it anymore.
"Yes, I'm sure. Please, Sammy, I need you. Brother, I need you." Stated Dean in a rough tone, his eyes threatening to well up with tears. Sam saw this and found he was having to fight that sensation as well.
"Okay. Okay, yeah, let's go." Replied Sam, nodding at his brother. Dean gave a relieved sigh and fought the urge to hug his brother, turning to leave.
At that moment that he turned, a blindingly bright light filled the room and gave the knight the sensation of being held down in a pool of holy water. He cried out in agony and dropped to his knees, not able to hear anything above the blood rushing in his ears. Not able to fight the insanely powerful hands that grabbed ahold of him.
"NO!" screamed Sam before charging forward into the light, charging at cold blue eyes that would haunt him forever. He dove, trying to shield Dean and landed face down on the cheap carpet. The light was gone. So was Dean and Lucifer.
Crowley had gone on a panic stricken search to have the Impala tracked and find where Dean had went. Before his informants could get back to him as to where it was, a familiar angel in a trench coat grabbed hold of him and they both appeared next to the car. Crowley blinked and saw one of the motel rooms had holy light burning bright inside.
"No, no…" Crowley moved forward to run in and a hand set on his chest, stopping him. He stared in mixed confusion and outrage at Gabriel.
"Any of us go in there right now and we'll be melted. Especially you." Stated Gabriel, looking back at the motel room. Crowley did the same and saw the light was gone.
"Fuck off!" he snapped and pushed past, jogging into the room to find Sam slowly getting up with guilt and terror on his face. The large Winchester looked up to see Crowley just as the other two angels made their way in as well.
"He's gone… Lucifer's got him. We gotta go." Stated Sam, standing up fully.
"We need a plan. No one can just charge at him." Said Gabriel, merely glancing at Crowley as the King slowly backed out of the room with a shell shocked expression.
"Screw a plan, Gabriel! What don't you understand about this? The devil has my brother! We have to save them! Cas, you know this! Crowley, you do too, right?! Crowley?..." asked Sam, blinking. Both angels turned and looked around to find the king was gone. Castiel stepped forward and set his hand on Sam's shoulder.
"We go to the bunker. We plan. We attack. We will save Dean. Or every single one of us will die trying." Vowed Cas, looking directly into Sam's eyes.
"Speak for yourself, kitten. I'm not dyin." Said Gabriel, sighing as he looked around.
"Then what the fuck are you doing here?" snapped Sam, looking at the short angel.
"I'm here to help, you massive asshole. Now we need to leave, before anyone sees that I'm alive. I'm your secret weapon." Retorted Gabriel, stepping out of the room.
"Dean is not going to die, Sam." Stated Cas, trying to convince himself of that as well. Sam just looked at him, giving the briefest of nods before walking out.
Dean's eyes snapped open, breathing heavily and finding himself in utter agony. Looking down, he discovered he was strung up on chains, meat hooks in his back to hold him up. Blood was dripping down and hitting the stone floor. The room was dark except for a fire burning a few feet from him. No matter how he tried, he couldn't get down. Glancing at his arm, he saw the mark of Cain was gone.
"It's almost like your stay in Hell, isn't it?" asked a soft voice, Lucifer made his way around to the front to look at Dean.
"No. That was worse." Growled Dean before spitting blood at the devil. Lucifer wiped it away and laughed for a moment.
"I haven't even started with you, yet, Dean. This is what I call foreplay. You're going to get a glimpse of what I have planned for your boyfriend." Answered Lucifer, hands behind his back as he strolled toward the fire, watching the flames curiously. Dean felt his face twitch in disgust and hatred.
"Good luck with that. He knows better than to let you catch him."
"On the contrary, I have a feeling he'll be desperate enough when none of his attempts work to simply give himself up for you. He's not the demon he once was. Humanity reminds one exactly what love feels like. Love corrupts logic. If he knew it would save you, he'd walk right up here and impale himself on those hooks for my entertainment." Said Lucifer, turning to Dean again and smiling, a proud grin. Dean grit his teeth and swallowed back his rage, refusing to give Lucifer the rise he wanted.
"You took away my mark. That make it easier for you to do this?" asked Dean, changing topic.
"Oh, yes. You can't fight me at all, now. You're still demon, though. Which means I can tear you apart over and over again. Just like Hell. You remember Hell don't you, Dean?" asked Lucifer, smirking as he stepped over slowly, a sword with a burning red hot tip at the end of it in his hand.
Dean didn't answer him. He only glared, grit his teeth, and refused to scream. Until the burning blade was pushed into the flesh of his stomach, anyhow.
Thunder rumbled and a bolt of lightning cracked in the sky, as though Heaven knew exactly what was happening. Rain falling cleared freshly dug dirt off of a stone grave marker, one reading John Winchester. The little veteran flag flapped in the sudden gusty wind as a hand opened the coffin that was no longer in the ground. Words of an ancient language were spoken but overwhelmed by another clap of thunder.
Down in Hell itself, fires broke out, spreading, and a surge shook it to its core. The famous cage cracking open as the king ordered it to.
Another clap of thunder and burst of lightning strikes as Heaven seemed to answer with its own music.
What were once ashes turned to bones, the dog tags that had been dropped on them draped around a neck as organs, muscle, tissue, and flesh formed once more. The lungs inflated and eyes snapped open. A bright, holy blue shining from them briefly before the body sat up and gave a confused look to who had busted him out.
"Hello, Michael." Stated Crowley, the rain hiding any stray tears that may have fallen as he began this process. He stared directly into the first angel's eyes and was relieved to find there was no hate or anger for him, merely curiosity and gratefulness.
"Hello, little king." Stated Michael through the vocal chords of the famous John Winchester.
(To be continued….)
**(Hell fuckin yeah. I feel so proud and accomplished right now. First long fic I've ever completed. Thank you so much for reading and sticking with it. Please leave me a review on your way out, I'm already working on the sequel.)**