Title: All I Want (is to see the truth from the lies)
Summary: Sam Winchester didn't make friends easily. So when popular prankster Gabriel started to take an interest in him, Sam wanted to know what his game was. Sam & Gabriel friendship. Cas & Dean friendship. High school AU.
Warnings/spoilers: If you know who Gabriel is, you're good. No slash.
Prompt: This was originally going to be a '30 Snapshots' fic, but it's like, four times too long, so it's just going to stand by itself.
All I Want (is to see the truth from the lies)
Sam Winchester didn't make friends easily.
He was too different, he knew, to easily fit in to the cookie-cutter world of high school. Maybe if he'd at least been more outgoing, or really funny, that would have been enough to make up for it. But he was quiet, geeky Sam, freakishly tall and always with a book on him somewhere, doomed to be an outsider.
Sam knew, rather bitterly, that if he ever had an accident or whatever that was weird or shocking enough to make it into the media, then someone somewhere would use the phrase 'reclusive loner.' It didn't matter that Sam wasn't like that by choice; that people just took one look at him, ticked all their mental 'avoid' boxes and sheered away; because he spent all his time alone everyone just slapped a stupid label on him and never looked beneath.
So when Gabriel Angelos, the cocky prankster of Deus High, equally loved and hated and a must at all the cool parties, started to take an interest in him, Sam just wanted to know what his game was.
The first few times it was no more than a greeting in the hallways, a 'hey Winchester!' or a 'hi Sam!' before Gabriel went on his way, leaving Sam a little puzzled.
Before long, though, he was stopping to have actual conversations, talking animatedly while Sam stared in perplexity and answered in monosyllables, and shortly after that he was seeking Sam out for no apparent reason other than to spend time around him.
Sam was deeply suspicious.
He couldn't think of any reason why Gabriel might want to hang around, and there had been times, when Sam was a kid, when people had pretended to be his friend only to use it against him or try to get something out of him; like Ruby, his so-called best friend of junior high, who turned it turned out had just been trying to suck up to Lilith by getting answers to their homework from Sam, and who had dropped Sam like a rock the moment Lilith had accepted her into her little clique.
So, if someone was suddenly acting friendly, Sam wanted to know why.
Right now Sam was trying to concentrate on his English essay, but Gabriel was kind of making that hard, leaning over Sam's shoulder and commenting on what Sam had written, eating candy the entire time.
"Seriously, it was all because he was greedy and weak-minded," Gabriel was saying. "He was already the Thane of Cawdor, he should have been happy with that. But noooooooo, he had to be king. He let himself get tempted by a bunch of witches and his gold-digger wife. And can I say, how lame is that? If you're going to go to the dark side and all, you should at least do it in a fit of ambitious megalomania, you know what I'm saying? Like my brother Lucien, he's way bad-ass. I mean sure, it's secretly like some giant bid for attention because Dad took off, but he acts like he's fucking Napoleon. I mean he started this Satanic cult and ended up with forty-two kids following him around and handing over all their money and doing whatever he said. Well, until he got arrested, anyway. That was when we started calling him Lucifer. He pretends he doesn't like it, but we all know he actually thinks it's pretty cool."
"Gabriel," Sam said, because he was actually trying to work and had absolutely no idea how to respond to that, "I'm trying to concentrate on my essay here."
Gabriel grinned at him.
"Want some chocolate?"
He offered a chocolate bar.
"We're not supposed to eat in the library," Sam chided, with what Dean had once referred to as his 'I have no patience for your shenanigans bitchface.'
"Ah, what they don't know won't hurt them. " Gabriel broke off a square of chocolate and munched on it. "Relax, Sam. It's not like I'm going to smear it all over the books in revenge for my library fine. Not that they don't deserve it. I brought back 'Lord of the Rings' ages ago, it's not my fault they lost it."
"You read 'Lord of the Rings'?" Sam couldn't help but ask.
Gabriel didn't seem the reading type. He looked more like trashy MTV reality shows were his style.
"Sure. It's all about short guys being awesome. How often do you find that in literature?"
Gabriel waggled his eyebrows in an 'I've got you there' kind of way, and ate another piece of chocolate to celebrate being right. Or maybe just because he could. Sam didn't know.
"Have you written your essay?" Sam asked, wishing Gabriel would go somewhere else and leave him in peace.
"Ooh yeah," Gabriel agreed. "Finished mine yesterday. It's all about parallels between 'Macbeth' and 'Star Wars: Return of the Sith.' I can't wait to see Mr Rosell's face.""
"The parallels between 'Macbeth' and 'Star Wars'?" Sam repeated.
"You bet. Good, upright guy is pulled into temptation by someone close to him, ends up in over his head, throws away his moral compass entirely as he gets caught up in the pursuit of power and turns into a megalomaniac type, before finally getting defeated by the kind of good guy he was in the beginning. You know, in a fit of cosmic irony."
Gabriel crumpled up his chocolate wrapper.
"Well, it's been nice talking to you, Sam, but I'm out of candy now. See you later."
With that Gabriel slouched off, presumably to find more candy, while Sam was still mildly stunned at the fact that Gabriel's analysis was actually kind of right.
Gabriel was one of six children, Sam learnt.
At nineteen, Lucifer and Michael were the eldest, although none of them saw Lucifer since he moved out and left his twin to raise the others, leaving a trail of criminal offences in his wake.
Raphael was seventeen, the same age as Sam's brother Dean, and a year older than he and Gabriel. Castiel was fifteen and probably going through puberty, although Gabriel said that with his whole Vulcan impression no one could really tell.
The youngest of them all was Anna, the only girl: she was thirteen years old, although people tended to assume that she was older.
"They drive me crazy, except for Cas and Anna, and even she gets on my nerves sometimes, talking about boys or whatever," Gabriel told Sam. "But no on else in that house is going to listen to her, so I sit back and nod along and pretend I'm interested in the anti-gravitational properties of Edward Cullen's hair."
"Uh-huh," said Sam. "You do know you're supposed to be in Math right now, right?"
He wasn't sure how he'd ended up knowing Gabriel's class schedule, but it said something about how insidious Gabriel was.
"Eh, I wasn't going to learn anything anyway." Gabriel dismissed the reminder. "So, how about you?"
"How about me what?"
"I'm assuming you have a family, and didn't spring fully formed from the head of a god, although that would explain a lot about your unnatural dedication to reading."
Sam raised an eyebrow at the mythology reference, but responded.
"Me and my brother Dean live with our Dad. It's okay, I guess."
"Yeah?" Gabriel stuck a lollipop in his mouth and watched Sam with an interested gaze.
Not malicious, or eager, just interested.
"He's kind of away a lot," Sam admitted. "Dean used to get stuck looking after me all the time when we were kids because he's the oldest, even though he's only a year and a half older."
"Sounds like Michael," Gabriel commented. "I bet you were a real bitch to look after."
Sam felt his face redden.
"Most people would assume I was easygoing," he pointed out.
"What, with that mulish look you get on your face and the whole passive-aggressive thing you've got going on? You probably made his life hell."
Sam couldn't help but grin.
"Dean used to call me Sammifer when I got really bad," he had to admit. "A couple of times he threatened to shoot me in the ass with Dad's shotgun."
Gabriel's laughter rang out across the quad, and Sam couldn't help smiling, even though the wary voice in his head kept telling him to keep his distance.
Sam got to school one day in time to see Gabriel dragged down the hallway by an irate teacher, looking utterly unrepentant.
"What did he do?" Sam asked one of the onlookers, a small red-headed girl who had watched the scene pensively.
She turned to look at him, and recognition flared in her eyes.
"Oh, you're his tall friend, aren't you?" she asked. "He talks about you. I'm Anna."
Anna's smile was warm and beautiful, but it faded as she answered Sam's question.
"Do you know Zachariah Adler, in senior year?"
Sam made a face. Zachariah was a complete dick who really had it in for Dean. Zachariah fancied himself as leader material; Dean hated people trying to boss him around.
"Well, apparently he's been picking on my brother Cas, and of course Cas didn't say anything – stoic doesn't even begin to cover it – but Gabriel found out. When everyone got to school this morning Zachariah was tied to the flagpole completely naked and covered in honey, and Gabriel had tipped a bucket of confetti over him."
Sam's mouth twitched violently at the corners, and he tried desperately to strangle the laughter he could feel bubbling up.
Anna gave him a knowing look, and a small smile.
"Yeah. Anyway, it was nice to meet you, Sam."
"You too," Sam agreed, and they parted ways to head off to class.
Sam was eating his lunch when Gabriel appeared across the cafeteria, with an arm slung around a slightly taller, younger boy with an impassive expression and the most piercing blue eyes Sam had ever seen.
"This is my brother Cas," Gabriel greeted Sam. He seemed as unflaggingly exuberant as always. "He's an oddball, but apparently he's been hanging around with your brother, so I thought you should meet him."
"Hello, Sam," Castiel Angelos said gravely.
He was only a kid, and he looked nothing like Dean's usual cocky, daredevil friends, but then Sam knew that Dean was deeper than anyone gave him credit for, including Dean himself.
"Hi," Sam offered, holding out a hand, which Castiel shook. "Good to meet you. Was that what the whole thing with Zachariah was about?"
"Ooh, news travels fast," Gabriel commented. "You've heard about that already?"
"Yeah. Dude, honey?"
An unholy smirk twisted Gabriel's mouth and made his eyes glint darkly.
"What can I say?" he asked, elaborately casual. "Family's family. We're the only ones who are allowed to make Cas's life miserable."
"Thank you, Gabriel," Castiel said dryly. "Your concern is touching."
Gabriel winked at him, before grinning at Sam.
"The 'Macbeth' essay's due today, right?"
"It is," agreed Sam, who had printed out his meticulously-formatted essay the day before, and stapled it to the cover sheet and his bibliography. The bibliography wasn't required, but Sam liked to be thorough about these things.
"Great." Gabriel dug through his satchel. "Let me show you mine."
Gabriel pulled out several carelessly-stapled pages, and held them up on display. Instead of using the official coversheet, Gabriel had improvised his own, with an illustration of two men in Elizabethan garb wielding lightsabers.
Sam bit the inside of his cheek trying not to laugh.
Castiel leaned in for a closer look.
"That's not the approved cover sheet," he told Gabriel disapprovingly.
"Yeah, I know, but my version's way cooler."
"You'll get in trouble," Castiel persisted.
"No I won't, because I'm awesome," Gabriel replied matter-of-factly.
Sam let out a strangled snort through his nose, and Gabriel gave him an appreciative smile.
"See? Sam thinks it's fantastic," Gabriel told his younger brother smugly. "It's his discerning and discriminating eye."
Sam lost it then, and just sat there laughing, as the argument rolled on around him.
Castiel was rolling his eyes, but there was a lurking smile in them that said he wasn't as deprecating as he pretended.
Gabriel was gesturing flamboyantly and declaiming loudly, and it was all completely entertaining.
Sam tried to control his laughter, and looked around to see that Dean had dropped onto the bench seat beside him. Dean slouched out across the table like he belonged there, and watched the Castiel & Gabriel Comedy Show playing out on Sam's left.
"You are intractable and incorrigible," Castiel growled.
"And you've got a stick up your ass the size of a redwood," Gabriel retorted.
"Are the always like this?" Sam asked Dean.
"Kind of," Dean replied. "So, you're hanging with this joker now?"
"I guess so," Sam answered.
"Don't sound decisive or anything, Sam."
"Jerk," Sam sniped.
"Bitch," Dean shot back without heat.
"It's like you just came to Earth on some kind of interplanetary exchange program to study humans for a thesis or something!" Gabriel flailed dramatically as he railed at his brother.
"Guys," Dean said with authority, "shut up. You're both complete goofballs."
"Screw you, Winchester," Gabriel said, but amiably, and opened a packet of M&Ms.
"Gabriel, tell me that's not all you're having for lunch," Sam said sternly.
"So what if it is?" Gabriel raised an eyebrow at Sam.
"Dude, that's not healthy. You need actual nutrition, like vitamins and proteins."
"Here we go," Dean grumbled.
"Seriously, if you don't eat a properly balanced diet –"
"Oh for crying out loud Gabe, just go grab some cafeteria food and spare us all the lecture," Dean recommended.
Gabriel rolled his eyes exaggeratedly, but went off to grab a tray of food.
"Gabriel never listens to anyone about his diet," Castiel observed. "I'm impressed, Sam."
"Hear that Sam? You're impressive."
Sam shoved his brother playfully. Dean shoved back, but although he was probably the fitter of the two, Sam wasn't exactly unfit himself, and had the benefit of greater mass.
Not to be defeated, Dean jumped up and seized Sam in a headlock.
"Dean!" Sam grunted, flailing, and grabbing at his brother's arms.
"Dean, you should release your brother," Castiel said, watching them as he calmly ate his lunch. Sam could understand Gabriel's Spock comparison.
"Dean, you bastard!" Sam pinched him viciously.
"Well, this looks like fun," Gabriel remarked, taking a seat next to Castiel with his tray. "Need help, Sam?"
"Nnngn!" Sam managed.
Gabriel grabbed a handful of M&Ms and dropped them down the back of Dean's shirt.
"Son of a bitch!" Dean let Sam go. "What'd you just stick down my shirt, Angelos?"
Gabriel brandished the packet of M&Ms, with a grin.
"You should remove them before they melt," Castiel recommended, still totally Zen.
As Dean pulled his shirt off, to the blatant stares of the female student population, Sam smiled at his rescuer in thanks.
Gabriel just smirked and ate his lunch.
Sam wasn't sure what to make of the whole Gabriel situation.
Gabriel was… nice, in a really annoying kind of way, and smart, and consistently funny even though Sam tried not to let on just entertained he was.
Gabriel seemed to genuinely enjoy Sam's company, and Sam found himself letting Gabriel further into his life every day. He liked the companionship.
He liked Gabriel.
It was just… what the hell would Gabriel see in someone like Sam?
The question nagged at him, and Sam couldn't forget Ruby, who had been his best friend for an entire year until she'd shown her true colours.
Not that Sam thought that Gabriel was like her.
It just… worried him.
Dean probably would have slapped him on the shoulder and told him to get over it, if Sam had said anything; but Sam wasn't Dean, who had his own small admiring following. Sam was Sam. People didn't just… try to be friends with him.
Right now Gabriel was acting more annoying than amusing, poking Sam's shoulder to tell him some story about how he'd won a promise of a date from Kali Shakti, who was considered to be not only the hottest girl in school but also the most psychotic, with an unpredictable temper and an on-off again boyfriend she always seemed to gravitate back to in the end. Rumour had it that she'd once stabbed him with one of her stiletto heels during an argument. Still, Gabriel liked hot girls with attitude.
Normally Sam would be really happy for him, if somewhat concerned, but he'd had a huge fight with his Dad that morning where they'd ripped into each other while Dean watched helplessly, and Sam just didn't want to be bothered right now.
"So we're seeing a movie on Friday. I'm going with Kali, Sam. Kali. Hottest, most badass chick ever. It's because I'm completely awesome."
"If you're so awesome, why do you keep hanging around with me?" Sam exploded, the question finally bursting out of him.
Gabriel looked at Sam like he was a moron.
"Because I think you're awesome too. Duh."
"You can't think I'm awesome!" Sam protested, waving his hands about in agitated emphasis. "I'm a complete geek! I spend half my time at lunch online! I read medieval texts in the original Latin! My favourite place to be is in the library!"
"Exactly," Gabriel pointed out. "You think anyone else in the school can say the same? You, my exceedingly tall friend, are interesting."
Before Sam could manage a reply, Gabriel grabbed his sleeve and started dragging him away.
Still too stunned to really react properly, Sam let him.
"Come on, let's go buy some skittles from the candy machine," Gabriel declared, pulling Sam along behind him like the world's most solid kite. "We can throw the purple ones at the geek's table."
And that was that, apparently.
Next Monday, Sam asked Gabriel how the date had gone.
"Oh, it was great! Chick was all hands!" Gabriel said with enthusiasm, and instantly changed the subject. "So how was your weekend, Colossus?"
"It was fine," Sam said, his brow furrowing. "Why don't you want to talk about your date?"
"Who says I don't want to talk about it?"
"Well, you're avoiding the subject," Sam pointed out.
"I'm not avoiding the subject," Gabriel scoffed.
"Oh, okay." Sam's eyes were trained on the determined figure stalking down the hallway towards Gabriel. "So, there's nothing you're trying not to talk about? Not, I don't know, why Kali's looking so pissed right now?"
Gabriel darted a suddenly alert look over his shoulder.
"Perditissamus!" Gabriel muttered. "Gotta go."
He took off before Kali could reach him.
Sam just stared after him in amazement. Since when did Gabriel speak Latin?
He caught up with Gabriel about the date with Kali during English class.
He probably should have been paying attention to the lesson instead, but it would probably be okay not to just this once.
"Okay, so maybe things didn't end that well," Gabriel admitted, flicking a worn-down eraser off his desk into the back of Anthony Crowley in front.
Crowley turned and gave Gabriel a sour, irritated look, and went,
"Angelos, you wanker," as he turned back to face the front of the room again.
"What happened?" Sam wanted to know.
"Her – get this – fiancé came home early."
"You're kidding me," Sam said in disbelief.
"Nope. Anyway, Vishnu took it okay – most laid-back guy I ever met – but I kind of said some things I maybe didn't mean, and now Kali wants like, my head for a necklace, or something."
"A necklace," Sam repeated.
"Mm-hmm. A skull necklace. What do you think? It'd be totally her style."
"I think that you're completely insane, but that's nothing new," Sam told him. "Sorry your date went so badly, man."
"Hey, don't worry. I got laid, and that's the important part, right?"
"Right," Sam said uncomfortably.
Like he'd know.
Gabriel apparently read his expression correctly, because he bumped shoulders with Sam.
"You know, Katie Gervais is a total skank. I bet if you asked her out she'd ride you like a pony."
"Thank you for sharing that particular confidence, Mr Angelos," Mr Rosell said in a light, disdainful voice right behind them. Sam and Gabriel both jumped. "Perhaps you would be so good as to restrict your topic of discussion to the class material, rather than your respective love lives?"
"Yes, sir," Sam mumbled, wishing he was slightly less tall, so that he could effectively sink into his chair as the class giggled.
"Sure thing, Mr Rosell!" Gabriel chirped, cheerfully enough to be mocking.
Sam focused diligently on the lesson after that, even when Gabriel said "I bet she would, Sam," in his ear, and smirked.
He did kick Gabriel in the ankle for that, though.
"So, I couldn't help noticing that you spoke Latin, right before you fled before the wrath of Kali," Sam said later.
Gabriel made a face at the mention of his 'strategic retreat.'
"Yeah, all my family does," he told Sam off-handedly. "I don't know, it's a thing. Apparently Dad spoke Latin to Michael and Lucifer all the time, before he, you know, left, and they did it with us, so we all kind of just grew up using it the same as we English. Like one of those second-generation immigrant families, if our father was an ancient Roman."
"That's kind of cool," Sam said.
Gabriel cocked an eyebrow at him, and grinned.
"So, um," Sam said awkwardly, "our Dad's going to be away again this weekend so it's just me and Dean, and, uh, I was kind of wondering if you wanted to, you know, come hang out. I figured we could watch a movie or something."
Gabriel's eyes lit up.
"Sam, you have the best ideas," he agreed happily.
Sam tried to hide his pleased, relieved flush.
"Dean'll probably wander in halfway through and hijack the couch, so you could bring Castiel over too, if you wanted."
"Sounds great," Gabriel said, "although I warn you, Cas has this compulsion to loudly critique everything he watches until you want to smother him with the nearest couch cushion."
"I'll bear it in mind. So, you'll come?"
"A boys-only movie marathon? With no annoying older brothers or younger sisters to ruin it? Sam, I can't wait."
"Awesome," Sam said, and meant it.
Author note: So yeah, a gazillion paragraph breaks. Also, 'perditissamus' means, roughly, 'the most done for' or 'I am the most done for of men!' It's basically a very dramatic 'I'm doomed!' in Latin, and the play I had to read in Latin class last year had the drama queen protagonist say this a lot. It seemed like a Gabriel thing to say.