A/N: Hey guys! Long time no see! *ducks from tomatoes* So okay, no real excuse, except to say I've had MAJOR writer's block for months and months and I apologize to those that have been asking about the continuation of the Puissance series. It's still on my computer, but man it's been hard to get working on those stories. Life's been rough the last few months, but I'll try and work on those soon.

A/N #2: Crack!fic. This story came about from a talk between me and several friends about a certain topic that we felt the show never addressed - you'll have to read further to figure out what it is!

A/N #3: No major cussing - a few mentions of Sam's butt - but nothing really graphic.

Disclaimer: I still don't own the Winchesters and now that Sera G has them under her control, I have even less of a shot of actually acquiring them. Darn.

Sam dumped his duffel on the edge of his bed before peeling off his jacket which followed suit. He glanced over towards the front door of their current night-time pit stop as his brother came trudging through the door, kicking it closed before dropping his bag on the floor and flopping down on the bed with a sigh, remote already in hand.

"There better be something good on tonight." Dean muttered more to himself as he flicked the TV on, scrolling quickly through the channels, ignoring his brother.

Sam didn't take the dismissive attitude personally. It wasn't the first time in the past week Dean had been brisk in his demeanor, either with Sam or anyone else. Ever since they found out that Castiel had lied to them about his alliance with a demon – to Crowley no less- his brother had taken the betrayal hard.

Not that Sam hadn't either.

It was hard to imagine that Castiel, someone who Sam considered a friend, would have just… pulled his body out of the Cage, but forgot to bring out his soul too?

Sam frowned, unzipping his bag and digging through for some clean clothes on autopilot, mind playing over their brief conversation with the rogue angel. Castiel had never answered if he had left Sam's soul in the Cage on purpose or not. He had seemed genuine, but since he had been lying about his involvement with Crowley, what else was Cas lying about? Sam couldn't help but feel used and abused and wondered if this was what Dean was thinking too.

His brother broke through his depressing thoughts. "Dude – you look like you just sucked on a lemon – I know the room isn't the Hilton, but I don't think it deserves the bitchy look you're giving it." Dean said behind him, eyes not leaving the TV, but watching his brother covertly regardless.

Sam shook his head, glancing at his brother through a fringe of bangs that fell into his eyes. "It's nothing. Just tired. It's been a long day, you know?" He grabbed his clothes and headed for the bathroom. "Check and see if there's a decent movie coming on." He said as he closed the door without hearing his brother's response.

Sam dropped his bag of toiletries on the counter and shed his clothes before stepping under the spray of hot water, absently tugging the shower curtain closed as he turned his face toward the nozzle, letting the water soak his hair and trail down his face and shoulders. While he would never mention it to Dean, being stuck in the Impala for hours on end caused his muscles to cramp and burn from lack of movement and a hot shower was exactly what his sore muscles needed.

Sam turned around, letting the water run down his back as he reached for the shampoo, his thoughts once again returning to Castiel's betrayal. Why would Castiel make such a deal with Crowley? Had Cas not learned anything from Sam and Dean's mistakes about how things go wrong with demon deals?

And Sam knew how hard this was hitting Dean. Though he hadn't said anything, Sam knew his brother was having flashbacks to the entire Ruby incident and their subsequent fight where Sam walked out on Dean, who lay beaten and bloody on the floor. Sam lived and breathed an apology for months, trying to repair the damage that he helped create between he and his brother and it took Dean almost saying yes to Michael for them to finally finally reach equal footing again. Castiel's treachery would be another blow to Dean's already limited sense of trust in individuals and not something that is easily repaired. Sam wasn't sure Dean would ever trust Castiel again.

Turning the water off, Sam stepped out of the tub and grabbed the towel hanging off the top shelf and started toweling off. They had had no warning, no sign that Castiel had been knee-deep in the whole hunt for Purgatory – or of Sam's restoration. From what Dean had told him, Crowley had said he'd been the one to raise Sam – and Castiel said nothing. There had been nothing to indicate that Castiel had been behind Sam's resurrection – not a clue there – so he was lying by omission. But why? What did Castiel have to hide? And more importantly, how could they trust him again?

Reaching into his bag, he pulled out his razor and dropped it on the counter, one arm coming up to clear away the steam on the mirror so he could shave. Digging once more into his bag, he pulled out the can of shaving cream, but his elbow caught the razor and knocked it onto the floor. "Damnit." Sighing, he bent over and picked it up off the floor and happened to glance at the mirror as he stood back up. He'd seen something on his lower back. Frowning, he turned his back toward the mirror and let the towel dip an inch or two lower, exposing the top portion of his right cheek. He started hyperventilating as he saw what looked like black skin that fanned down over his cheek, dark and ugly. Because of the size of the mirror, he couldn't get a good look at the… what, wound? Mark? Oh God, what if it was some kind of infection? But he hadn't gotten injured recently, and it was not any kind of bruise that he's ever seen.

Panicking, his yelled for his brother, embarrassment be damned.

Dean aimlessly flicked through channels, finding nothing of interest to watch. Not that he particularly wanted to watch anything, but he just wanted to shut his mind down for a while, try not to think.

Because thinking only made him remember last week, where they found out that Castiel had betrayed them all. Angrily, he tossed the remote on Sam's bed, leaving the channel on the local news station, where some mid-forties woman was discussing the concern on rising gas prices. "Yeah, get in line lady. You and everybody else are getting sucked dry at the pumps." He muttered despondently, crossing his arms and trying and failing to find a comfortable position. He caught the sound of the shower turning on distantly in the bathroom and Dean absently hoped that Sam didn't use up all the hot water – he'd also like to get a shower before crashing for the night.

The reporter soon moved on to discussing a series of murders. Dean watched reluctantly, his interest peaked. There was too much for them to deal with right now, but a simple back-to-basics hunt is what they really needed.

By the end of the report, Dean was sitting up on the bed, absently taking notes. He'd have to wait and see what Sam thought, but this sounded like a case to him, and it could take his mind off of the latest disaster that was their lives.

He was so focused on his notes that he literally jumped when his brother yelled for him from the bathroom. He was off the bed and opening in the door in the next breath. "Dude, what's –" Opening the door all the way, Dean had a full view of Sam twisting like a pretzel, trying to look at his backside, of which he had partially exposed. Dean turned his head away awkwardly, shielding his face with his hand. "God Sam, cover up! I don't need to see that!"

He didn't see Sam's look, but could hear the shaky fear, and the hint of embarrassment. "I wouldn't ask if I wasn't freaked out! There's something on my… on my…ass… and it's freaking me the hell out because I can't…." He trailed off, and if Dean had been looking at his face, Sam would have had his bottom lip between his teeth.

Dean blew out a long breath, moving his hand away and staring down at the floor, avoiding his brother's eyes. "Seriously, I come running in here, thinking you're bleeding to death and your, what? Concerned you picked something up? Dude, I'm your brother, not your doctor."


Dean lifted his vision just high enough off the ground to see that Sam had covered up and was turned toward him. He raised his head up and stared at Sam's reddened but frightened face. "You seriously want me to look?" He asked sceptically. It's not like it's the first time he's seen his brother in a less than fully clothed way. Unfortunately, due to injuries that have left them depleted, wrung out and unconscious, you do what you have to do in order to take care of your own.

Sam unconsciously pulled the towel higher up on his hips, face burning red. God, he felt like such an idiot. "Nevermind. I'll get a doctor to look in the morning. Forget I asked." He made to close the door on his brother, but Dean's hand knocked his off the door. "Don't be a pansy." Dean absently closed the door behind him and stood face to face with his younger brother. He poked a finger at his sibling. "But – you breathe a word of this to anyone, and I'll make sure they never find your bones for a proper burial. Okay?"

Sam nodded – not like he was ever telling anyone about this humiliating experience. Turning around, he waited to see what his brother thought of the strange black mark.

Dean reached hesitantly for the towel around Sam's waist, already thinking that Sam better thank his lucky stars that Dean was such an awesome brother. "Where is it?" He asked, fingers hovering an inch above the top of the towel.

Sam swallowed more embarrassment and all of his pride and answered quietly, "right side".

Dean tugged on the towel enough that it exposed the top portion of Sam's right cheek and he could clearly make out the dark mark that Sam had been mentioning. "Geeze, what the hell is that?" He said aloud.

Sam snorted. "I don't know. But I can't really see it very well – obviously – but it didn't, you know, look good."

Dean frowned. "And you just noticed this now? No pain, tenderness?"

He shook his head. "No. I just noticed now."

Dean tugged further on the towel, exposing his brother's ass cheek even at his brother's squawk of protest. "Dude, this thing is like, six inches long at least." He frowned, staring at the mark but not touching – way too personal an area to touch and Dean flushed red at the thought. But staring at the mark - because there's no doubt that that is what it was, Dean frowned, because something was familiar about the mark. The way it split and fanned over a good portion of Sam's right cheek and ended near the back of Sam's thigh. It kind of looked like….

Sam shifted, obviously uncomfortable with the compromising position he was in. "Uh Dean? You got an idea what this is, or can I get dressed now?" He expected his brother to tell him to shut up, or to ignore him and continue mumbling to himself but really, having your brother stare at your ass – your bare ass mind you – was extremely awkward – for both of them.

He was not expecting, however, the bark of laughter that came from behind him. "What?" Sam snapped, hastily pulling the towel back up, sending a glare at his brother.

But Dean was laughing – honest to God tears in his eyes – his breath choppy as he desperately tried to stifle the hysterical laughter bubbling up out of his chest.

Sam had no idea what was so funny and found himself angry at Dean. Instead of flushed with embarrassment, he was flushed with anger. This wasn't funny at all! "What the hell is wrong with you?"

Dean tried to talk, he honestly did, but every time he stared at Sam he'd start laughing again. He desperately pawed at the door and yanked it open, his laughter bouncing off of the walls.

Sam stood in the bathroom utterly perplexed. What the hell was that? Seriously? Swearing, he yanked on his boxers and jeans, flinging the towel on the floor as he stomped out after his brother, absently grabbing his clean shirt off the back of the door and hastily putting it on. "What?" He yelled, watching his brother wipe his eyes on his sleeve from his bed.

Dean struggled to get the laughter under control. After weeks of stress, not to mention the monumental disappointment of last week. This? This was so worth the embarrassment of the situation – mostly on Sam's part.

He licked his lips and tried to keep a straight face and knew he would fail, even as he said, "dude, it's a hand-print," and dissolved into roaring laughter again.

Sam was flummoxed. That didn't make any sense. "It's a… what?"

Dean was curled on the bed, fighting between laughing and breathing. "Dude, Castiel left a mark on my arm like a brand when he pulled me out of hell." He pinned Sam with a serious look. "Cas did say he raised your ass from perdition!" He failed to contain his fits of giggles, especially when he looked at the utter dumbstruck realization on Sam's face.

He might have been angry at Castiel - hell, infuriated with him - but he did get Sam out of hell – even if he botched the job. And for that, Dean would be grateful, even if he wasn't happy about more memories that Sam would angst and feel guilty over that wasn't his fault, but were Castiel's.

Sam floundered for words, feeling heat chase the anger from his face. "He…mark…how…why?" Oh God, this wasn't going to go away. He essentially had a permanent tattoo on his ass of Castiel's handprint. No wonder they hadn't thought Cas had raised his body – they had never seen a brand on him other than his anti-possession tattoo that had managed to stay with him during his resurrection.

Until now – Castiel's handiwork was apparently not so hidden.

Dean snickered. "Oh God, this is hilarious."

Sam scowled at him even as he flipped him off. "This is not funny!"

Dean smiled brightly at him. "Oh come on - It's a little funny."

Sam left his brother howling in the main room while he stormed back into the bathroom, slamming the door behind him – at least one of them was amused by this whole situation, 'cause it sure as hell wasn't him.

Dean finally swallowed the last of the tears and let out a long sigh, feeling for the first time in a long time, at peace. Even if it was at Sam's expense. They still had monsters, demons and angels to deal with and this was only a momentary reprieve in what seemed a continual storm of bad things – but if he and Sam could survive this, find some way to stop Cas and Crowley from opening up the door to Monsterland and keep Sam's wall from breaking at the same time, then they could survive anything.

Besides, Dean thought brightly as he grabbed the remote from Sam's bed and flopped down on his own, he had enough material now for years to tease Sam about with this one incident and he would be milking it for all that it was worth. Sam was going to be the butt end of a lot of Dean's jokes for the next few years. "Heh. Raised from perdition Sam's ass!" And if Dean couldn't help chortling at that, who could blame him?


A/N: We (my friends and I) wondered why Sam never had a mark like Dean did when Castiel was the reason Sam was brought out of the Cage. Joking and laughter aside, this is what the 'theory' was :p This story came out of that discussion.

Hope you enjoyed!