Author's Notes: Castiel has known that Sam crawled out of hell and finally convinced him to let his brother know he was out.
Summary: post-5x22. Unstable!Broken!Sam. Sam went to Dean and now Castiel must try to convince him to stay.
"So you're just going to leave again?"
"It's not the same, Cas." Sam was biting his thumb and I looked at him sharply, his fingertips were already bitten bloody. He stopped and crossed his arms, like he knew he'd do it again if they weren't pinned against him. He also averted his eyes from mine.
"He's seen me. He knows it's me, really me. I'm not in hell," he stumbled and I added 'anymore' silently for him.
"I'm not suffering," Liar "And he's safe."
I took a moment to look over him, something I did not like to do recently. He got worse every day, both of them did, and it was painful to see. He was staring off to the side, lost in his head again. He swayed from side to side, the pace of the movement, I had learned, indicated how far away he was.
He was thin, too thin to be healthy, but I never saw him eat on his own and he would only pick at the things I brought him. Dark purple circles were permanent fixtures under his eyes. His arms were still crossed, but as I watched, his fingers were repeatedly clawing against his skin, creating new raw patches on his arms to match the ones that had just stopped weeping on the backs of his hands.
He was totally unaware of it. Of just how bad and done and thoroughly wrecked he looked. He probably thought the look in Dean's eyes and the tremble in his hands when he had seen him had been solely from the shock of seeing him alive instead of just seeing him. And suddenly I was done playing the spectator.
Sam tried to smile, but only ended up biting another hole in his lower lip. "It'll be okay now. He'll move on…"
"...Did the two of you share some birth defect I'm unaware of?" That got his attention and he blinked at me, his fingers stilling, blood under his nails.
"Were you deprived of oxygen at a young age or dropped on your heads? I heard that can also cause human children damage."
"You're dying, Sam. Slowly, horribly, you're killing yourself. And I'm not going to watch the two of you just fade away."
He looked alarmed.
"Not alright. No more than you are. He's still trying because he promised you, but he can't do it forever Sam. He can't stand it."
"He knows I'm out now. He won't worry-"
"Thinking of you in hell was painful for him. But thinking of you out there without him will be torture."
As if on cue, the lights in the hotel room Sam had been staying in were turned on and the yelling began.
"Sam! Sammy! Sam, answer me! Godammit Sam- Where are you?"
There was crashing and cursing and Sam flinched, his eyes clenching shut against the sound of his brother's pain.
"Sammy! Sam-" the end was strangled with tears and panic. Sam was shaking, folding into himself and pressing back against the wall, trying to make himself as small as he could. Tears drenched his sunken cheeks.
I sighed and gently brushed the long bangs from his eyes. He made a keening sound in the back of his throat like a wounded animal and I gentled my voice.
"Sam, being apart has never worked for either of you." He was shaking his head manically and clawing at his skin harsher than I had seen before. I grabbed his wrists to stop the damage, but kept on. "You may think you're helping him by letting him have a normal life, but you're forcing him to have that life and he doesn't want it. Didn't you see how quickly he left when he found you? You know your brother, did you see anything false in that joy? Any regret?"
He stopped shaking his head so harshly and I knew he heard me.
"Sam, you have to try. For Dean, okay?"
He didn't answer, didn't move at all, trying to choke back his cries. He was in eyesight range from the room, but he remained there. That was answer enough to my plea and I smiled.
I watched the door of the motel room fly open, Dean's wide, reddened eyes scanning until he saw Sam slumped against the wall. He ran forward immediately and I took that as my cue to leave.
It was up to them now.