Disclaimer: All mistakes are my own. I do not own these characters, they belong to the CW, DC, and Marvel
Silence. Not a calm silence or even the eerie, skin crawling silence that one finds when entering a haunted house. It was the muted, deafening silence that disorients and screams danger. The silence before the rage takes control. Dean awoke to the silence. Something thick and hot dripped down his face as searing pain licked up his right arm, from his palm to his shoulder. A sizzling pressure throbbed behind his eyes as he shook his head to clear the fog encasing his mind. The silence broke. The onslaught of terror and agonized screams were the same as his nightmares, his memories, his worst fears. Dean awoke falling through Hell in an iridescent glow, the Soul Gem burning within his hand, frigidly cold compared to the air surrounding him. Fear choked him as he continued to fall, further than the first time, past Alistair's torture chamber, past his own, down through the heat and into the bitter cold.
The glow of the gem faded as Dean hit ice and rock, body crunching on impact. Mind still gripped in terror, Dean's body slowly knit itself back together while the gem began to warm his hand. A smooth chuckle reverberated off the frozen cave walls followed the sound of shuffling feet. Dean blinked and groaned, wincing at the dull light emanating from his icy surroundings and slowly shifted his body towards the sound. Cold, unforgiving blue eyes met wide petrified green. A thin smile spread across the handsome face, blonde hair left slightly messy as a hand was dragged through it. Dean quickly schooled his features as the man squat down in front of him, smile stretching into a devilish smirk, "welcome back, Dean."
Jason stared in shock at Dean's prone and illuminated body. The Soul Gem was casting a glow over the hunter whom Batman had determined dead due to Dean's lack of pulse. Jason could barely hear the muffled arguments between the other four men because of the roaring in his ears. Deadpool was denying ever having dared Dean to pick up the gem while Loki was threatening to rip out the merc's tongue and tie it in a knot. Batman was demanding why Constantine thought it was a good idea to encourage Dean to pick up the stone, to which Constantine replied by lighting up a cigarette with a charismatic shrug. Jason watched as the Soul Gem's glow faded from around Dean as he bent to lift the hunter out of the grave. All four men ceased arguing as Jason laid Dean's body out on the ground, "now what?" he asked, looking at Constantine. "Now we wait for Dean to do what he does best," the exorcist exhaled. "And what exactly is that?" Loki snapped. "Come back to life," Constantine ginned.
The Devil grinned as Dean swallowed past his fear and shock. The Soul Gem continued to throb with warmth in the presence of Lucifer, much to Dean's gratitude. The stone was keeping him grounded in reality, and wasn't it sad that Dean's reality included Hell and the Devil. Dean's award winning bullshit smile graced his lips as the hunter looked Lucifer in the eyes, "well, you could have given me a more hospitable welcome. You and the big brother should work on that, guests won't want to come back." Lucifer's eyes narrowed as his mouth curled up in forced mirth, his fingers snapped, the sound ricocheting off the walls. Dean winced at the sound then doubled over at the pain tearing through his abdomen, blood pouring out of his mouth. "You seem to forget who I am and where you are, you worthless mud monkey," Lucifer said conversationally as he picked Dean up by the man's throat. Dean braced himself in preparation for his body crushing under the impact of hitting the cave wall.
"Lucifer." The two blonde heads turned towards the sound of the Archangels' name, Dean's body momentarily relaxing. Dean blinked slowly as Lucifer dropped him and a dark haired figure made its way towards them. "Oh man, I don't know if I should feel relieved you're not dressed as Adam or freaked out that you're dressed as my dad, well the younger version," Dean shivered in disgust as Michael stopped in front of him. The dark eyes narrowed as the Archangels head tilted in consideration, "I told Adam I would send his soul to Heaven if he allowed me to possess him, and that is what I did." Dean's eyes widened, "wow, never thought you'd keep your word," he mumbled, impressed despite himself. Michael arched an eyebrow in response before turning to his brother with a critical expression. "He's not here for long," Michael indicated to Dean with a wave of his hand as he motioned for both men to follow him. Dean hurried after Michael while Lucifer sulked after them.
They entered a larger cavern, just as cold and desolate as the previous room but with two bench like structures in the middle. "Good place for some quality family chats, ain't it," Dean deadpanned to which Michael shot him a reproachful look. "You and Sammy are welcome to take our place," Lucifer hissed, "or join us, it would surely provide for more entertainment and I could use some quality Sam time," the Devil added as an afterthought with a smirk shot towards Dean. Dean made to lunge at the blonde Archangel but was hauled back by Michael. "Just keep your damn mouth shut," the hunter growled as Lucifer blew a kiss at him. "We don't have time for this, let me see the gem Dean," Michael ordered, taking the gem from Dean's hand without waiting for an answer.
Lucifer moved closer to his older brother as Michael held the gem up. "It sure has been a while since we've seen one of these bad boys," Lucifer spoke in awe, eyes intently focused on the Soul Gem. Dean's head cocked, eyeing the two angels, "wait, what do you know about it?" Lucifer gave Dean an annoyed look while Michael turned to address the hunter, "Father created the Infinity Stones or Gems at the beginning, Lucifer and I his only two sons at the time. We watched as these stones of pure power were shaped, molded to harness the different powers of the universe, of God." Lucifer rolled his eyes at his brother, "the Soul Gem, which can collect souls, warp them, control souls, and so on and so on," the Devil drawled. Dean nodded along, "why are you both telling me this? I mean not that it isn't helpful, but, well, we don't exactly like each other." Lucifer huffed in irritation, "I think you know why Dean."
"Wait, so where is Dean?" Jason looked at Constantine who was the only one who seemed to have an idea of what was going on. The magician took a drag of his cigarette and flicked the stub onto the ground, stomping it out with his shoe, "Hell." Loki's head whipped around at the pronouncement, "Hel?" the god asked incredulously. "No, not your bloody daughter's domain, double L mate," Constantine informed Loki who scoffed in derision. "So you knew this would happen?" Jason demanded of Constantine. "Course not mate, I've only get glimpses of Hell, like peeling back the curtain. Dean, well, he's done tours. He'll be fine, he's a big boy," Constantine shrugged dismissively.
"Thanos," Dean stated, "what's his deal? I mean I know he wants to 'court' Death and all, but how'd he find out about the gems?" Dean looked back and forth between the two Archangels. "That's immaterial," Michael dismissed the inquiry as Lucifer nodded in agreement, much to Dean's surprise, apparently they could agree on something when it concerned giving Dean information. Lucifer turned to Dean, "the question you should be asking is what Thanos intends to do with the gems once he has them." Dean rolled his eyes, "what is he going to do with the gems?" Lucifer smirked condescendingly, "why, what an excellent question Dean." A crack sounded throughout the bone-chilling cavern, Lucifer slowly turned his head back towards his brother and Dean, wiping blood from the corner of his mouth. Dean shook his fist out, grinning, "damn, that felt good." Michael shoved both of the blondes back, "focus," he demanded, "we have little time left." Dean and Lucifer reluctantly nodded still glaring at each other as their chests heaved.
"He is going to use the Infinity Gems to destroy the world. Once the Earth is destroyed, he will move on the Asgard and the rest of the nine realms in hopes to gain complete and utter favor with Death," Michael remarked as he handed the gem back to Dean. The gem started to radiate light once it touched Dean's palm. "So what am I suppose to do?" Dean demanded of the two angels. Michael glanced at Lucifer before turning to walk away. "Well, you could always say 'yes'," the Devil cackled at Dean's furious face. "Ughhh, fine. Death's having weapons made for you, yes. Those will help you combat Thanos' army, but nothing can destroy the gems. Heaven's vault should be safe enough to contain one of them, if you can find the key," Lucifer shrugged as he turned to follow his brother. The light fully enveloped Dean as he was ripped back into life.
Jason watched as Dean's chest heaved in air and his body began to glow once again before quickly dimming. The vigilante knelt down, propping Dean's head up as he heard Constantine berate the hunter for his impulsive behavior. Dean coughed trying to clear his throat and sat up, "we need to find the key to Heaven's weapons vault, it's the only place that can keep the stone safe from Thanos while we fight off his army." Jason helped the hunter to stand, trying to process the meaning behind Dean's words. "When and where was the last known location of the key to the vault?" Batman's deep voice cut through the air. "During the Apocalypse, with Balthazar," Dean murmured, dragging a hand down his face.