A compantion piece that I wrote after You Are Worthy Cas, this is basically a second chapter I hope ya'll like. This is, once again, for Crowley'sMooseSquirrel'sAngel my good friend who has had a crummy day. I hope the fluff cheers you up sweetie :)
Dean certainly wasn't expecting to Cas to jump back like 'old' Cas, but he wasn't sure he was prepared for the horribly subdued nature of Cas' behavior. If he hadn't wanted to leave the bunker before, it was even worse now. In fact he had camped out in Deans' room and refused to leave.
Another thing, not that Dean minded much besides it being worrisome, but Cas wouldn't leave his side. The first couple days back he wouldn't even let go of Dean's hand. He kind of followed him around like a lost puppy. And he wouldn't really speak, he just seemed to hover nearby, sometimes so close Dean had half a mind to say 'person space, Cas' but he would not dare say anything like that. Not when it was so obvious that Cas was anything far from alright. Every time he stopped to confront Cas and say 'please talk to me' Cas' ocean wide eyes would be glassy and quiet and then Dean would only usher them to bed. He'd wrap him up more than tight, hold him close and hope he could put the pieces back together. With Cas' mojo so low, or gone, Dean nor Sam were quite sure. Cas slept. They'd fallen into a routine of dinner, Netflix, sometimes YouTube videos and then Dean would have to tug a lulling Cas to bed.
Dean opened his eyes, with a deep breath of new morning air, he glanced to his right and Cas was fast asleep. Hair a mess in ways that reminded him of the old days and plump, pink mouth slightly open heaving soft breaths.
Dean eased his way out of bed, successfully not making the mattress creak or groan in protest to the loss of weight. When Cas merely snuffled in his sleep and turned over on his side from his back, Dean grinned in triumphant.
Dean showered and dressed and met Sam in the kitchen, "Hey Sammy, I'm gonna head out for some supplies, given that he's kinda of angel not angel, whatever, dude needs to eat. I'm gonna pick up some of that honey he likes and peanut butter and jelly. Well, and bread, I think all we have here is a bag of candy and a six pack." Dean stuffed his wallet in his jacket and then was struck by Sam staring at him in some weird little brother adoration way, "What?"
"Nothin'," Sam grinned, "I just think it's nice."
"You takin' care of Cas," Sam's smile softened with seriousness, "He needs this, he needs you. And you're doing a helluva job, I haven't seen you all mother henning like that since I was a kid."
"Yeah, let's not get all chick flick moment bullshit," Dean grumbled, cheeks tinging pink as he snatched up his keys from the doorway hook, "Just keep an eye on him huh? He's still sleeping I won't be more than an hour."
Dean set the groceries to the bunkers' kitchen counter, unpacking one item at a time, setting all Cas' things in one pile, smiling at his findings. He'd found everything he'd been looking for, right name brands and everything. He even found local organic honey, he wasn't sure what the difference was, but Cas knew the difference and that was all that mattered. He nearly dropped said honey when Sam burst in the kitchen, eyes darting.
"Thank God you're home!"
"What's wrong?!" Dean found himself shouting.
"It's Cas, he's-he's having a panic attack or something, woke up looking for you. He couldn't find you and freaked! I tried to calm him down but I can't seem to reach him."
"Where's he at?!" Dean demanded, already unconsciously following Sam down the hallway.
"He's in the living room, that's where he went looking, but I can't get him to move," Sam explained.
As soon as Dean spotted him huddled on the floor near the couch he was sprinting to where he sat, "Cas, hey, hey, hey, I'm right here," it was now that he was close enough to touch that he could feel the damn near vibration in Cas' limbs. Dean took his chin in one hand directing his sight to his own, "Baby, you hear me?"
Cas shouted, high-pitched and almost non-human, launching backwards away from Deans' touch, miscalculating and hitting the floor, "Fire, there's f-fire, it burns…"
"Cas," Deans' eyes were wide as saucers at this point, balancing on his haunches, moving inch by inch closer to Cas' cowering form, "Babe, there aren't any flames, no flames, you need to breathe."
"Yes, there are, but it's cold," Cas gasped, "It's so cold…Dean!"
Dean was horrified to suddenly experience the presence of Cas' sobs, "Cas, listen, please, you're not there…"
For Cas it was like tidal wave after tidal wave of burning, ice cold that ate through the thin flesh of his eyes, down his throat, taking firm grip of his heart and squeezing. He could hear his own screaming and out of control breathing. It was only when he felt Dean clutching both his hands, did he realize he was damn near pulling his hair from the roots, his scalp tingling and burning. But he couldn't breathe, and he hated it. That he couldn't seem to get a lung full of breath in, no matter how he tried. He locked eyes with Dean, "I-I c-can't b-breathe….so-so cold, it's cold…it hurts…please…"
"Sammy! Get me a blanket!" Cas thought he may have heard through the pumping and thumping in his ears, his heart never more prominent that it was now in his chest.
Dean snatched the thick over-sized cotton blanket from Sam's hands, without thinking twice he wrapped it around Cas' shoulders and then was pulling him forward to cocoon him in the fabric, "Gonna lift you up here on the couch, Cas," Dean said, scooping Cas up and settling them both to the plush surface of the old couch, he situated the blanket around him more snuggly. He even draped it slightly over his head to create a hood, "Breathe baby, breathe. You gotta slow those breaths or you're gonna hyperventilate."
He continued this mantra like a prayer, using his free hand to comb his fingers endlessly through Cas' dark hair, massaging his scalp. Thankfully after at least a painstaking 15 minutes, Cas' breaths slowed, his chest didn't seem to be heaving painfully any longer. And with that he gave a non-verbal 'it's cool' to Sam. But Cas was still shaking like he was sitting in a drift of snow, "Hey, you hear me?"
"Dean?" Cas croaked, voice already wrecked.
"Yeah, you with me?" Dean asked carefully, holding him closer, if that were even possible, pressing lips to his forehead.
"I was there," Cas sobbed, loud and messy and without warning. His cries popped up like bullets.
Dean tried not to flinch at the heartbreaking sound, "Where Cas? Where were you at?"
"He didn't just leave me alone…he'd…dangle a reality I wanted…and then take it away…and then there would be cold. So cold…it hurt so much, and I couldn't find you. Even in the delusion…I couldn't…I couldn't find warmth…I've never felt that kind of cold. Not since…I fell and became human…not even then."
Dean's heart leapt and he felt sick, "Cas, you're here with me, you feel me? You're not going anywhere, fucking nowhere," he fixed the blanket tighter around him, Cas in his lap at this point, he made sure the blanket covered his legs and bare feet. As big as it was it wasn't hard.
"I would forget, what he was doing to me…why it was so easy, to just stay…" he slurred in exhaustion, "He would burn me so badly I almost forgot my own name…and then offer me such comfort…that was here…and you…he offered you…"
"Oh Cas," Dean hissed against his temple, before placing a careful kiss, then one and then another. His eyes were stinging fiercely, "That son of a bitch is gone and he ain't ever gonna touch you again."
"You weren't here when I woke up," Cas whimpered, sickened by the weakness in his own voice. But even with his cries losing strength he nuzzled into the warm nape of Dean's neck, inhaling deeply and purposely. His scent of leather and oil calming his nerves.
"I went out to get groceries, should've had Sammy do it, I'm sorry babe, I'm sorry," Dean sighed, he felt sick with grief, he honestly did not think that Cas would react to his absence in such a way. He hadn't before, and before he could ask why? He knew. Because Dean had never been consistent, not one goddamn time through their relationship, so before all Cas knew he'd disappeared completely, "Cas," he leaned down, kissing his still panting mouth, "I ain't going anywhere, never, got it? I'm here, for good. You're all I want."
Cas hiccupped, spent cries still working their way out of his chest, buried far too long, "You promise…"
"Yes, Cas, I promise, I swear on everything I love, and that's you and Sam. I ain't going anywhere, I love you," Dean sighed roughly, kissing him deeply once more on the lips before kissing both cheeks, "You okay? You alright now?"
"I-I think so," Cas stammered, feeling stupid now that the panic finally passed.
"You wanna stay here for a while?" Dean asked, rubbing his back in careful circles through the thick blanket.
"Yes, if you wouldn't mind," Cas said barely above a whisper, eyes feeling like lead.
"Okay, that's, okay," Dean soothed, lips in his hair once more, "And then I'll make you breakfast. I've got that honey you like and guess what else?"
Cas finally took a full deep breath, looking up from Dean's chest, "What's that?"
"Peanut butter and jelly," Dean grinned, "Grape jelly."
And Cas finally smiled, "I'd like that very much," his chest feeling calm once more, and his feet on the ground.
Dean swallowed and smiled, nodded, "Anything you want babe."