Castiel: Laying Siege to Hell
"When we discovered Lilith's plan for you, we laid siege to hell." - Castiel to Dean
When Castiel landed on the outer edge of Hell the first thing he noticed was how dark and hopeless it looked. Hell was the total opposite of Heaven. Castiel had expected this of course, but he still couldn't help but be stunned by the difference between them. Heaven was bright and beautiful and endless. Hell, meanwhile, was virtually the definition of the end.
Castiel had never been to Hell before. The thunderous sounds that came from an unknown source in the pit made him feel small. Like a child in a canyon, Castiel felt lost. He did not belong in Hell, every particle of his being screamed it, but he had a job to do, a mission to complete. Castiel had to obey his orders and he wasn't about to lead his superiors to believe he was weak; especially not when he'd finally been given a chance to go on a mission so important, let alone take charge of it.
So Castiel trudged slowly towards the center of Hell, somewhat reassured by his knowledge that though he felt alone, he wasn't. Some of the other angels in his garrison were following him, ready to help him fight the demons they would meet before reaching the center where the majority of souls that went to Hell were tortured. It was where Dean Winchester was located.
Dean Winchester had been a hunter of evil on Earth. His only reason for being in Hell was that he had made a deal with a crossroads demon to save his brother from death. Dean Winchester was the reason Castiel and the other angels were in Hell. Lilith, the first demon, wanted Dean to torture. He was a righteous man and by torturing he would break the first seal that would bring on the Apocalypse.
Lilith had Alastair the head torturer demon, working on Dean to ensure what she wanted would happen.
Castiel prayed he'd get to Dean in time for the sakes of Heaven and Earth. The end of the world may be inevitable but Castiel preferred that it be put off as long as possible.
The task was daunting though. Many demons including Alastair would be surrounding Dean. The fight to get to him would be a long one. Hopefully, it wouldn't last too long.
"Castiel, there are demons in the distance," Rehael warned telepathically. "Five, I believe. Should we fight?"
"No, it is best to avoid them and save our strength," Castiel thought back to his brother.
Rehael sighed. "You are right."
"Patience. You will get to fight soon enough," Castiel said silently.
He then unfolded his wings, flapped them, and flew over the demons unnoticed. He joined ten angels, the ones that were the closest to him. Rehael was one of them.
"We will land near the center," Castiel told the group as he flapped his wings faster and picked up speed.
Most of the other angels nodded and they all allowed Castiel to pass them to lead the way.
For hours they flew, until they heard in the distance the sound of souls screaming. These screams chilled Castiel to his core. He'd heard people scream during their battles and beg for mercy, but those sounds paled to the shrieking the human souls made as they were cut up piece by piece. The noise was worst than Castiel could have ever imagined. It was worse than the thunder, worst than the hopelessness Hell had radiated upon his arrival. The screams made Castiel want to fly away and forget the mission. Fear and horror overwhelmed him; two emotions, among many, that angels rarely felt. It took every ounce of self-control for Castiel not to shake.
As they landed Armatt, a female angel, noticed Castiel's distress. "Are you alright, Castiel?"
Castiel craned his neck to look at her. "I will be."
Castiel started walking at a faster pace than before. He was determined to do what had been asked of him, to save Dean Winchester before it was too late. If he were unable to do so, he'd still have to raise Dean from Hell. He would have to watch out for him and guide him because Dean would play an important role in stopping the Apocalypse or if Lucifer did rise, in stopping him. It was a mystery to Castiel how someone mortal could do either but he wasn't about to question his superiors, let alone God.
Just as the hooks and chains used to hang the souls being tortured in Hell appeared several demons attacked Castiel, Armatt, Rehael, and the other angels with them.
They were all black-eyed demons but they were pretty strong for their rank. The one who jumped Castiel knocked him over from the impact. In less than five seconds though Castiel was back up and he punched the demon. He then raised his right hand to the demon's forehead and it lit up with his golden light. The demon screamed and then he was gone.
Afterwards, Castiel turned to Armatt and helped her by keeping another demon restrained while she killed it. When all the demons were taken care of Castiel looked around at the other angels with them to see how they were.
"Is everyone alright?" he asked.
The angels all nodded.
"Yes," Rehael confirmed.
Castiel turned to continue forward. "Let's keep moving then."
So they all continued onward, most of them by flight except for Castiel, Armatt, and an angel named Muriel.
It wasn't long before they reached a second batch of demons, this time twelve.
"We're reaching the center; we are going to need everyone!" Castiel called out mentally to some other angels that were somewhere nearby.
Nathaniel, the leader of the second group of angels, answered. "We're on our way."
Once Castiel heard that, he focused on the demons approaching. The angels fought and killed the demons and pressed onward as Nathaniel and his group joined Castiel's. More and more demons popped up and fought the angels the closer they got to the center of Hell. It got tougher and tougher to defeat them quickly. Soon it got impossible. Castiel and the others fought for such a long time that Castiel lost track of it. He fell often and had some close calls with death fighting some fallen angels he recognized who were armed with angel-killing knives. They were hard to kill because they had once been his brothers but Castiel did it because they hadn't even hesitated to attack him. Even angels went mad in Hell after being there for a while. Castiel could only hope he would keep his sanity long enough to get out of Hell, if he lived. After fighting for so long Castiel had started to doubt that the last thing he would ever see wouldn't be Hell. Only his will to survive was keeping him alive and his fellow angels. When the angels finally were smack in the middle of Hell Castiel was tired, but relieved.
He was also excited too, but he was all business when he spoke to the others telepathically. "I will search for Dean Winchester. Back me up."
"We will," Nathaniel promised.
Castiel flew as low to the ground as possible and searched for Dean using almost all of his senses.
Castiel's superiors had said he would know who Dean was when he saw him. He wasn't sure how he would know who his charge was without seeing him first but Castiel wasn't about to give up after everything he'd done to get to where Dean was located.
It was only when Castiel spotted a man torturing another soul with Alastair beside him, grinning with pleasure while watching him work, that Castiel suddenly understood what his superiors had meant. He just sensed, somehow, that the man torturing was Dean. In that moment he also realized he was too late, that he and the members of his garrison who had gone on the mission to prevent the start of the Apocalypse had failed.
Castiel felt guilty for the failure and at the same time was horrified at the sight before him because Dean Winchester could and was torturing like the best of the demonic torturers.
At first Castiel was deeply confused at how Dean could be righteous in any shape or form. It was obvious Dean found pleasure in torturing the soul that lay before him. It took Castiel a minute to realize he was wrong. Looking closely at Dean's posture and into his green eyes Castiel saw and sensed how broken Dean was. He had been given the choice of torturing or to continue to be tortured and out of his fear of further pain he had chosen to torture. Dean was only enjoying it because he finally wasn't the one receiving the punishment being dished out.
Dean Winchester doesn't belong here, Castiel thought to himself.
Castiel couldn't imagine making a deal for anyone like Dean did for his brother Sam. He wasn't one willing to sacrifice himself for anyone, not consciously, at least. For someone immortal, he was very conscious of his weaknesses. Though angels weren't easily killed they were. The possibility made Castiel nervous in times of war.
Castiel stepped out from his hidden viewing spot and by doing so, drew Alastair's attention to him.
"You're too late angel boy," Alastair sneered.
Castiel shook his head. "Let Dean Winchester go, now."
Alastair smirked. "You're going to have to go through me first to get him."
He charged Castiel and a fight ensued. Castiel punched Alastair in the face and Alastair punched him back. Castiel ducked to avoid a second punch then knocked Alastair down by swinging his arm to hit him in the jaw.
Alastair laughed as he stood up once more. "Is that all you got?"
Castiel huffed and prepared to ensue in a fist battle with Alastair but the white-eyed demon had other plans. He ducked away from Castiel's right fist and knocked him to the ground. In quick thinking Castiel stood and kicked Alastair behind the knees. The demon fell upon them but he was not fazed.
Castiel had only a split second to prepare before Alastair was at him again and they continued their battle until Muriel came up from behind Alastair and wrapped his arms around his throat as tightly as he could.
"I'll hold him off; just get Dean quickly!" Muriel shouted.
Castiel nodded and moved towards Dean who was still focused on cutting up the bloody disemboweled soul in front of him. The soul, a man, screamed in agony as Dean stabbed him in the eye.
Castiel flinched. This behavior was blasphemous; not one that should be found in any holy man. But despite what Dean had done before him Castiel could not judge him now. Hell made even righteous souls corrupt. He would let this sight before him leave his mind. Castiel would treat Dean as he would if he were any other person.
Castiel approached Dean in the way anyone on a mission would. He noted that despite of everything that was happening around him, Dean hadn't seemed to notice a thing except the soul in front of him. Dean was an extremely focused soul.
Finally, as Castiel came close enough for Dean to see him from the corner of his eyes, Dean turned to face him.
"Who are you?" Dean asked gruffly.
"No time to explain now," Castiel said as he raised his right hand to Dean's head.
At his touch Castiel rendered Dean's soul unconscious and Castiel grabbed his arm before Dean could fall to the ground.
Castiel then quickly glanced at Muriel who was busy fighting Alastair and silently prayed that all his brothers and sisters who had walked, fought, and flew through Hell with him would make it out alive.
Castiel then spread his wings to their full length and flew Dean's soul out of Hell to his gravesite on Earth in Indiana. There, he laid Dean back into his broken and decomposed body. Castiel then placed his right hand on Dean's left humerus bone, which was one of the few bones left from his body that hadn't returned to dust yet, and closed his eyes.
Castiel concentrated on his inner self, his grace, and let the power flow through and out of his hand. He opened his eyes to watch as Dean began healing before him. Missing bones formed out of the dust in Dean's wooden box. His blood vessels, muscles, and organs all reformed at a steady pace. Skin followed along with Dean's eyes and tongue. His soul reunited with his body and his heart began beating again. In just a half second Dean's clothes were repaired and he gasped to take his first breath. Dean was completely healed except for the burn the heat from Castiel's grace had caused on his arm, something that was inevitable at the time.
Castiel quickly disappeared as Dean became aware and as he did, he wondered how he should approach the man he'd just rescued from the bowels of Hell. All that Castiel hoped for was that he would not make any mistakes while doing so. Dean was a very important man and it was important for him to speak to him as soon as possible without setbacks.