A/N: Well, here it is, complete in seven parts. I am a little worried because part six didn't get ANY reviews, so, please, if it sucks, let me know so it can be improved... that being said, this leaves off in a harsh place, but there is a sequel, "The Cradle Will Fall" that will start posting towards the end of this week/beginning of next week. Thank you for those who have stuck by this fic til the end! You guys are awesome! Please, leave comments so I know if it sucks, it's the only way to know if it needs improvement!
Dean and Cas made their way down to the kitchen. Dean couldn't wipe the goofy grin off his face but damned if he cared if Sammy teased him about it. Today was a good day and his brother was not going to ruin it.
When they got to the kitchen, Dean had to laugh at the disgustingly domestic scene before him.
Sam was at the old stovetop frying what smelled like bacon, and Dean thought he smelled eggs as well, while Gabriel lounged at the table, reading, off all things, the newspaper.
"Where's your apron, Sammy?" Dean called out.
Sam turned and scowled good-naturedly at him.
"Careful. You want breakfast, you better watch your tongue," Sam warned.
"Why would he need to watch his tongue when he's got Cas to do that for him?" Gabriel quipped.
"Ha ha. You really think you're something, don't you?" Dean asked the Archangel.
"No, I know I am," the other man responded, trademark smirk in place.
Dean just rolled his eyes. He didn't think he and the other angel would ever be bosom buddies, but he had to admit that the shorter man was starting to grow on him.
Dean sat down at the table and motioned for Cas to take the chair next to him.
"How's the little guy doing?" his brother asked.
"Good. He's sleeping. He's... he's amazing," Dean told them, his goofy grin growing as he thought of his son.
"He's very tiny," Cas commented. "I have seen many human babies but I suppose I never quite realized how small and... fragile they are."
"He's really not as fragile as you think he is," Gabriel commented, setting down the paper. "His Grace gives him protection human infants don't have."
"Like what? Anti-evil force fields?" Dean asked.
Gabriel gave him a confused look.
"Dean? You really need to stop watching Charmed," Sam told him.
"Hey! I only watched it 'cause those sisters were hot!" Dean defended.
Sam raised an eyebrow at him.
"I don't know, Dean, considering your situation, are you sure you weren't watching it for Leo?"
"Shut up, bitch. Leo was a douche."
"Jerk," Sam replied with a laugh.
Dean couldn't help but smile. Things really were good today.
Sam brought a plate full of bacon and a plate full of eggs over to the table.
"You guys are gonna have to serve yourselves, though," he told Dean and the angels.
"Yum!" Dean heaped food onto his plate and dug in.
He had a mouthful of food when Gabriel plopped a Wal-Mart bag down next to his elbow.
"Consider this your impromptu baby shower."
Dean tried hard not to choke on his eggs.
"Uh... baby shower? You gotta be kidding me."
"There were a few things we got for you guys that weren't necessities. We agreed to give them to you after Danny was here," Sam explained, handing him a blue giftbag filled with white fluffy looking tissue paper.
"Well, uh, thanks, guys," Dean told Gabriel and his brother, surprisingly touched by the gesture. He picked up Sam's gift first, still a little scared of what the ex-Trickster might consider a suitable gift for a baby shower.
He pulled out the mounds of tissue paper and pulled out the first item. It was a leather bound, thin book with Daniel scrawled across the front in delicate cursive writing.
"It's, uh, a baby book. You can write all the important details and dates and... stuff in it and then Danny can have it when he gets older. Before you make fun of me and call me sappy, I just... everything we had was destroyed in that fire and... I don't know, I thought it would be nice to have a record of his first step or his first word, that sort of stuff," Sam trailed off, looking really unsure.
"It's awesome Sammy. I remember Mom keeping something like this for you," he reassured his brother with a smile, then handed the book over to Cas so he could look at it.
Dean pulled out the other item and stared at it for a minute. It was a simple black onesie with the silhouette of a leaping stag on the front. He knew what it looked like, but...
"Turn it over," his brother told him.
Dean turned over the small piece of clothing and burst out laughing. Scrawled across the butt of the onesie were block letters spelling out CHEVY MAN.
"See, now that is awesome," he told Sam. His brother smiled.
Dean sat the gift bag aside and reached for the Wal-Mart sack. He pulled out the first item and started laughing again.
The Archangel just laughed. Dean held up the onesie for Cas to see. It was light blue with white screenprinted wings on the back. On the front in script writing were the words My Daddy Thinks I'm An Angel. Cas snorted when he saw the gift and gave Dean an amused look.
Dean pulled out the next item and his laughter died. He shot a glare at the angel across from him and held up the outfit. It was a bright pink onesie with a pink and blue flannel over shirt and pair of jeans. The pink onesie had the words REAL MEN WEAR PINK across the front.
"Real man or not, my son is not wearing pink," Dean told the smirking man.
"Told ya," Sam muttered from next to Gabriel. The shorter man just shrugged.
"The jeans are nice," Cas offered in an obvious attempt to stop an argument.
Dean sat the offending outfit down and pulled the last item out of the bag. He sputtered when he saw what it was. Cas leaned over to look and turned bright red, jerking back away from Dean. The hunter held up the box and resumed his glaring at the Archangel.
"Well, he was a surprise, thought you might could use them."
Dean glanced at his brother and realized he was about to burst out laughing. He had to admit, it was kinda funny. Not that he'd ever admit that to Gabriel.
"Thanks, guys," he told them, really meaning it.
Sam found it strangely normal to have a baby and two angels hanging around Bobby's house. Bobby, on the other hand, didn't seem too keen to play host and, after looking in on the newest Winchester and offering Dean his congratulations, he hightailed it up to Wisconsin to deal with a Wendigo.
That left just the four of them and one baby. Again, it was weird but strangely comfortable.
Sam loped up the stairs but paused in front of Dean's room. His brother was pacing the small space between bed and crib shushing a frantically crying Daniel while Cas sat on the bed looking lost.
"Everything okay?" he asked.
"Does everything look okay!"
"How long has been crying like that?"
"For two freakin' hours, Sam! Where the hell have you been," his brother growled at him.
"I was seeing Bobby off and helping him load up his truck." Sam glanced between his brother and Cas. They were both pale and stressed looking.
"Here, let me take him. At this point he's probably picking up on your stress. Why don't you two go for a walk, get some fresh air. I'll be okay with him for half an hour or so."
Dean looked like he was going to refuse, but once he glanced over at Castiel, Sam could see him give in.
"You sure about this?" his brother asked as he handed over the screaming baby.
"I'm sure. Cas looks shell shocked and you look ready to snap. Get out for a few."
"Thanks, Sammy," Dean told him tiredly.
Sam just shooed the two stressed men out the door and copied Dean's earlier route from crib to bed then repeat, gently patting Daniel's heaving back where he was perched on his shoulder.
It was Sam's third or fourth circuit when he realized he wasn't alone any longer. Gabriel was perched in a corner silently watching Sam's pacing.
"Enjoying yourself?" he asked.
Gabriel just sighed and stood up. He walked over to Sam and held his arms out.
"Like you'll do any better."
Gabriel just raised an eyebrow and motioned for Sam to give him the baby. The hunter reluctantly handed Daniel over to the Archangel.
Gabriel carefully cradled the screaming infant to his chest and began to sway. Daniel's screams lowered the slightest bit and Gabriel started to sing. It was a haunting melody, both infinitely beautiful and infinitely sad. The words were a language Sam didn't recognize, probably a language that had been dead for centuries. Daniel's cries calmed to a whimper as Gabriel's voice washed over him.
Sam was amazed. That was one talent Sam would never has suspected the Archangel to possess.
In a matter of minutes, Gabriel had Daniel sound asleep. The shorter man eased down on the bed and motioned for Sam to join him. The hunter carefully took a seat on the bed, fearful of waking the sleeping infant but little Daniel didn't even move.
"You're really good with him," Sam pointed out.
"Duh. I'm awesome."
Sam couldn't help but chuckle.
"And so humble."
Gabriel smirked then handed the now sleeping child over to Sam. The taller man gently cradled the tiny body against his chest. He still couldn't believe that his brother and Cas had created this little miracle.
"He's pretty special, Sammy."
"Yeah, I know. Is Eve... do you think she'll come after him?"
Sam watched Gabriel's expression darken.
"Let her. She won't get anywhere near him," he told the hunter vehemently.
"Good," Sam murmured. Gabriel reached over and brushed Daniel's hair off his forehead. "So, does that mean you're gonna stick around for awhile?"
"Don't worry, Sam. I don't plan on going far. I'm always just a prayer away."
Sam took that as a promise.
Dean sat beside Cas on the hood of an old beat up Ford. The peace of the slowly darkening evening was heavenly after the almighty screaming fit they'd been dealing with. He hated to break that peace, but there was something on his mind that he knew he needed to bring up with his angel, he just dreaded what Cas's answer might be.
"So, uh..." he started.
Castiel glanced up at him.
"So, what now?"
"What do you mean?" the angel asked.
"I mean, what happens now? You headed back upstairs?"
Cas looked surprised.
"I had planned on staying here, with you and Daniel. Unless..." Cas paused, his words faltering as his brow furrowed. "Unless you don't want me to stay."
Dean's gaze snapped to the angel's.
"Of course I want you to stay! I just thought... Ya know, responsibilities to the Host and all..."
"Dean, I have no greater responsibility than to you and our son. The angels abandoned their offspring once before. I will not make the same mistake. Gabriel will allow my leave, I'm sure, and even if he wouldn't, I would still choose you and Daniel over Heaven."
Dean could feel tightness in his chest and he was embarrassed to feel wetness in his eyes.
Castiel reached over and grasped his hand.
"Of course, Dean."
Sam was dreaming, he knew he was but he couldn't make himself wake up. It didn't seem to be a nightmare, so he took a minute to look around.
Dean and Cas were sitting close together at the kitchen table, eyes glued to a book. A little boy streaked by, catching Sam off guard. The child had wild, dark brown hair and azure blue eyes. There was no doubt who he had to be.
His theory was confirmed when a little girl's voice called out.
"Danny! That's not fair! No using your powers!" The little girl who had called out raced by as well. When she reached the panting boy, she glanced over her shoulder and smiled directly at Sam. She had long, light brown hair pulled up high in a ponytail and sparkling hazel eyes lit with mischief.
Sam felt his heart lurch. He knew this girl, he didn't know how, but he was sure he knew her.
The scene started to fade. Sam reached out, not yet ready to say good bye to the mystery child but it was no use. The light, peaceful atmosphere was quickly fading only to be replaced with an ominous darkness.
He could hear a man screaming in pain... a very familiar man. His stomach dropped when he realized it was his own voice he was hearing.
Suddenly, his body came alive. Pain radiated from everywhere. He could hear Dean frantically yelling and above it all, a woman's voice worriedly speaking.
It was hard to make out the words, but he finally pushed the pain away enough to hear what the woman was saying.
"Dean! I'm losing him!"
Sam lurched up in his bed, gasping for breath. He felt something wet on his face and reached up, touching his upper lip just under his nose. His hand came away bloody and he realized his nose was bleeding.
Before he could fully process that, his head exploded in pain and his stomach rebelled. Jumping out of bed, Sam ran for the bathroom.
Dropping down in front of the toilet, he emptied his stomach into the porcelain basin. He was so focused on his retching that he didn't realize anyone else was up until he felt a hand on his back.
He stomach heaved again and he spewed the contents of his insides into the toilet once more.
When he finally felt like he had his body under control again, he sat back and took a deep breath.
"Jesus Christ, Sam. What happened?" Dean asked while handing him a cold wash cloth and cup of water.
"Bad dream," Sam muttered, taking the cloth and cleaning his face of blood and bile. He gratefully sipped at the water Dean had handed him and looked everywhere but at his brother.
"Bad dreams don't do this to someone," Dean pointed out angrily.
"They do to me," Sam whispered resignedly.
"They used to," Dean told him suspiciously. "Is... is that what this is?"
Sam just sighed. His head was throbbing and his stomach was rolling. He really didn't want to get into this with Dean right now.
"I don't know," he told his brother. "Can we... I just... Fuck, Dean. I don't know. Right now I just want a bottle of aspirin and my bed."
His brother was silent for a minute before finally nodding.
"Alright, Sammy. Let's get you back to bed then I'll get you something for the pain."
"Thanks, man," Sam murmured as he let his brother help him back to his room.
Sam didn't know what was going on, or what was coming, but he knew that he had Dean to help him figure it out, and for tonight, that was enough.