Just to re-iterate; this is not meant to take place within Season 6, but a kind of alternative 'what if?' that I started before seeing any of the 'real' season 6. Therefore the characters are more how they were within Season 5, so to speak.
Sariel paced the room, deep in thought.
Other than the wardship of a newly resurrected Jessica Moore, she had received no word from Heaven as to her work in some time – the year following the averted Apocalypse had been especially confusing for both Heaven and Earth, so it was not surprising she had been almost forgotten. Besides, she had become used to near-autonomy in the millennia she had held human form, and there was a lot to be done on Earth – what Dean referred to as clean-up duty.
Sariel had abandoned any lofty views when she elected to stay on Earth and preferred such tasks to the idea of returning to Heaven and tackling the enormous mess that it no doubt was in the absence of God and half a dozen Archangels.
Despite this, there was no reason, she should not attempt to bridge the gap between the two. A number of angels frequented Earth – most of these, Sariel chose to avoid, given the opportunity – but one of them, she could feel that he needed her, whether he knew it or not. But how to go about it? Sariel doubted the technique she had just employed on the Winchester boy would work, even if her physic had any effect on angels. Perhaps it was best to go back to basics.
She sat on the bed – borrowing a currently unoccupied apartment was a small crime for an angel, and one she was sure no-one would bother her about – and closed her eyes. Some said there was a particular wavelength that angels communicated on, or that certain rituals were needed to find the one you required. Sariel had always found that shouting real loud worked just fine.
A moment later, she opened her eyes, and there he was.
"Sariel. Why have you summoned me? Is there trouble?"
"No, but that's part of the problem. You always think there's trouble."
Castiel fixed his dark blue eyes on her.
"There generally is."
Sariel shrugged, getting to her feet and throwing off her white coat. She went over to the mirror on the wall and started to comb out her blonde hair with her fingers.
"Probably. But what I mean is, when was the last time you did anything for a reason other than it was important you did it?"
Castiel's brow furrowed.
"I don't follow."
"Something for yourself. Just you; not the world, or Heaven, or those two pretty walking bundles of strife called Winchester."
She turned back to face him; the healer aspect of her generally manifested itself in an almost maternal desire to take care of others, to fix their problems any way she could. The look of utter confusion on her fellow angel's face right then would have inspired that desire in pretty much anyone, she was sure, and she had to restrain herself from giving him a hug.
"What are you talking about?"
"I just spent an hour or so with Dean, discussing the nature of healing," Sariel told him.
"Or arguing about it, at least. Boy is the most stubborn ass I've ever come across, but at least he understands that he needs healing, even if he doesn't want me to."
"Why would he not want to be healed? What needs healing?"
"With him? Pretty much everything, starting with the idea that he's broken in the first place. I don't think he's ready yet, but he will be. You, on the other hand…"
"Yes, you, Castiel; Angel Of The Lord. Though no-one's seen him in some time, so maybe I should just call you 'Angel'."
The look she was giving him now made Castiel even more uncomfortable.
"I still have no idea what you're talking about."
"And I thought it was just humans that are this dense. I need to fulfil the function I was created for, and that involves the healing and guidance of angels too. You've had a rough few years, and I don't think you've allowed yourself to admit that, have you?"
"I am also fulfilling my function, Sariel. There is nothing strange about that."
"Really? You were created to avert the Apocalypse? To restore order to Heaven in the aftermath? Because I think that's a little above your paygrade, sweetheart. No offence."
"None taken. But you still haven't-"
"I'm getting there."
Sariel picked up a bottle of whiskey from the sideboard that hadn't been there a minute earlier and took a swig.
"You want some?"
She proffered the bottle.
Castiel eyed it with apprehension.
"No, thank you. I'm – on the fence right now."
"I think you mean on the wagon. Okay."
Sariel put the bottle back down and, without any warning, went over to Castiel and kissed him full on the mouth.
Startled, Castiel did not respond for a moment, then drew back.
"What are you doing?"
"You were restored, 'new and improved', that much I can tell. But all resurrections leave their mark and are difficult to heal. I like a challenge."
Castiel's blue eyes bored into hers, trying to read her.
"As you can see, my intent is genuine."
"I did not doubt that."
The air of vulnerability he exuded made Sariel's fingertips itch, calling to the need in her to heal a wound, emotional or physical.
She stroked her hand down his face, feeling the stubble on the face of his vessel, knowing that the angel inside would feel the sensation instead of the human who had been born into that body. She had become accustomed to being the sole occupant of her vessel, but Castiel, newer to possessing human form, still found such things confusing. It had taken her a while to get used to that herself, back in the beginning of her time on Earth.
She leaned in to kiss him again, and this time, he let her.
Apart from the, ah, 'incident' in the brothel Dean had taken him to, Cas had tried not to let 'temptations of the flesh' get in the way of his work. He had always been so focused, driven, trying to do what was right, for the best. Sariel was right; it had not occurred to him to do anything for himself, even had there been time to do so. It had taken a human to push him into experiencing anything earthly, and those had rarely worked out well. But Sariel was an earth-bound angel who'd experienced similar things to himself and perhaps that was the closest to someone who understood him he'd ever get. And if that was what she meant by healing, then perhaps it could work, and he decided to go along with it.
Sariel pressed up against him, arms wrapping around him and Castiel began to feel the human body he possessed respond. He had expected some kind of magic from Sariel; an arcane ritual he had not previously known about, or some kind of healing ceremony, and had been prepared to indulge her, thinking perhaps it would prove useful to get her support in the future, whenever he might need it.
But now it was dawning on him that nothing of the sort was occurring; what Sariel had in mind was sex, pure and simple. That realisation made Castiel uncertain – sex was not something he knew much about, even between angels. Dean's "cloud-seeding" comment hadn't made any sense to him, but then again, it was difficult enough trying to keep up with Dean in a conversation of that type at the best of times.
"Shh. Try not to worry, okay? I got this."
"I said shhh."
Sariel pressed a fingertip to his lips.
She slipped the trench coat and jacket from his shoulders, guiding him toward the bed, pushing him gently back until he was sitting on its edge. Watched as she took hold of the hem of her sweater, raising her arms and pulling it off over her head. Her golden hair fanned out around her shoulders, catching the late morning sunlight so that it shone like a halo. Which was ironic, Castiel thought, seeing as how angels had never had them and he had no idea why humans insisted on depicting angels as fluffy-winged harp-players.
Sariel straddled him, hands on his shoulders and he found himself responding instinctively, his own hands taking hold of her by the waist as he turned his face up toward her to kiss her again.
He could feel the magical energy levels in the room rising, but was too distracted by what he was experiencing up close to analyse them. Clearly Sariel was more powerful than he had given her credit for. There was a certain… divide between the soldier angels like himself and those with more esoteric abilities; indeed, there were those in his garrison who believed that the creation of angels like Sariel had been through a weakness their Creator had towards the needs of humanity.
But at that precise moment, Castiel found it hard to care about any of that. Sariel felt warm in his arms. He could smell the perfume she wore, feel her hair brush his cheek, hear her heartbeat. That was strange, he thought. As the sole possessor of a technically dead human form, should she need to keep the heart beating?
But then Sariel stood up and divulged the rest of her clothing, and any such questions vanished from Castiel's mind.
He watched her undress, transfixed, a sense of the rest of the world, Heaven and Hell and everything in between fading into nothing, caught up in the moment, the here and now in a way he never had before.
Sariel reached out and undid the tie from around his neck, unbuttoning the shirt and again his hands moved almost unthinkingly to caress her. Unlike his only previous experience of sex, this felt right. All his nerves had disappeared as he pulled Sariel down on top of him, kissing her as they fell back on the bed, the rest of his clothes quickly joining the heap on the floor.
"You see?" Sariel breathed in his ear. "It's good to take a moment for yourself, every now and then, yes?"
Castiel had often struggled to find the right words in order to express himself, among humans. With Sariel, there was no need at all. Energy filled the room now, an almost audible humming and Castiel realised that Sariel had begun to glow, her Grace emanating from within her. Healing magics or no, Castiel could feel what she was trying to do and no longer cared.
Rolling him onto his back, Sariel straddled him once more, hands on his chest for support as she took him inside herself. Castiel's own hands slid upward, filling themselves with her breasts, eyes closing, losing himself in the overpowering sensations.
"No," Sariel said, one hand touching him lightly beneath the chin.
"Look at me, Castiel."
He looked; the glow surrounding Sariel had increased as her wings began to unfold, a dazzlingly brilliant pure white. And yet they continued to unfurl until each wingtip had reached the sides of the room, the light now so bright that it hurt his eyes.
Castiel felt himself drawn upwards, sitting up so that he could look directly into Sariel's eyes. Her expression was serene, but lit up with the intensity of her power, her energy, her purpose.
Slowly, carefully, she drew her wings in, enfolding him gently within them and Castiel felt as if he were dissolving in the white-hot sensation, everything that he was cleansed and forgiven, leaving him nothing but that one moment.
For a long, long moment, the two angels remained locked together, staring into each other's eyes, perfect serenity surrounding them both. Then Sariel began to draw her wings back, the light of her Grace fading like a sunset.
"We all have a purpose, Castiel," Sariel whispered to him.
"This is part of mine. And, hopefully, now, you can better fulfil yours."
And then she was gone, vanishing along with the last of her light. But something did linger; the sense of stillness and tranquillity remained, and Castiel lay back on the bed, breathing deeply, and feeling, for perhaps the first time, relaxed and at peace.
I held off on uploading this because, as Sariel is my OC, it could be interpreted as horribly Mary-Sue-ish, which wasn't my intent. Once I'd written Sariel as the Angel of Healing, I figured this was sort of inevitable.