A/N: Not much to say, except that I love Supernatural, freakin' love Castiel, and that the urge to write a Cas/OC was too great for me to ignore. This would be the first story I've done for SPN, so hopefully it isn't a piece of crap. So... here goes. Also, this begins at 4x01, Lazarus Rising.

In no way, shape, or form do I own Supernatural.

don't panic

chapter one

"Mr. Singer!"

Bobby let out a long sigh, pouring himself another full glass of whiskey. He raised it to his lips to throw it back, but some of the amber liquid sloshed around in his glass, wetting his beard, when another shrill yell pierced the air of his otherwise quiet house.

"Mr. Siiinger!"

"What?" He grunted, glaring at the face that peered around the corner at him from his kitchen. "What's the problem, you pain in my ass?" As an afterthought, he grumbled out, "And it's Bobby. What am I, your damn principal?" Finally, he gulped down the whiskey before fixing an agitated glare at her face.

"Sorry, Bobby," The girl squeaked out, "I-I just thought I should let you know that there isn't any food in the fridge..." She took a timid step out from the kitchen. "Or anywhere, really."

Her name was Nanette Taylor, and she was what Bobby would call an idjit.

Bobby had been on a case in Luverne, Minnesota – it was the run of the mill ghoul hunt, nothing special. He had met her when he was investigating the most recent disappearances; her parents. And once all had been said and done, she'd turned to him and said: "Things l-like that... they're real? And you hunt these things?"

The same question that survivors who had seen creatures of the supernatural asked, complete with the typical eyes as wide as dinner plates. It was the words after them that had surprised the hell out of him.

"I want to help you."

Of course, Bobby had thought this to be a shitty idea; a twenty something, waifish looking girl hunting the things that go bump in the night? Hell, she had been crying her damn eyeballs out during the whole ordeal with the ghouls (not to mention crying on him for a good while after) – he could only imagine how she would react to anything else.

A flat out no should have turned her away, but Bobby had to at least hand it to her that the girl was adamant; annoyingly so, as he found out the next day, when she had appeared on his doorstep with a bottle of whiskey in hand and a determined look on her face. Briefly, he wondered how she'd found him, when he realized he'd given her his name in case she ever ran into anymore trouble. It didn't take a genius to look up an address in the phonebook.

She had shoved the bottle in his face, eyes glinting hopefully at him. "Whiskey?" He asked her, still not moving away from the door or inviting her in.

"No offense, Mr. Singer, but I could smell it on you from a mile away," She said sheepishly. Begrudgingly, he swiped the offered bottle and invited her in to tell her hell no a couple more times, then shoo her off the property with the threat of unloading a few bullets into her.

Nanette simply used the reasoning that he'd saved her life once already, and so it would be a waste of time on his part if he was to off her now; and with that being said, she repeated this process for two weeks straight. At the end of those two weeks, he had let her in once more, and she had not left since. At any questioning of what she could have possibly left behind, she'd shrug and tell him that without her parents, all she had was a waitressing gig at the local diner, and that she had been terrible at it anyway.

He taught her how to use guns, first. She wasn't a half bad shot after a good, long amount of time spent practicing. Bobby had also attempted to teach her some hand-to-hand combat, and he didn't go easy on her in hopes that maybe he would knock the idjit out of her. That never happened, though, albeit much got knocked out of her otherwise. Determination gave her potential, though said potential was buried way, way down.

And as much as he bemoaned her out loud, he didn't mind her presence too much. She was decent when it came to patching up the usual wounds, and was pretty proficient when it came to memorizing the many lores and symbols that would come in handy.

Nan, as she preferred to be called (despite Bobby's remarks that it made her sound like someone's grandma), was sweet - she certainly cooked a hell of a lot better than he ever did, did the laundry - all the things that someone like Bobby Singer didn't have time for. And by time for, it was more like didn't feel like doing, especially since Dean had died.

That morose thought sobered him up a bit, and he went to pour the last bit of whiskey into his glass. After chugging it down, he glanced at Nanette with eyebrows raised. "What're you looking at me for, girl? Go get some then!" He rolled his eyes at her as she gulped, nodding hurriedly before grabbing her jacket and heading out of the door.

"And don't forget the whiskey!"

When Nan came back to the house, it was to the sight of Bobby staring disbelievingly at a man with water dripping off of his face.

"Can't be too careful," Bobby told him, a flask of holy water in hand. Finally, they both seemed to notice she was there, blinking at them with her arms filled with bags.

"... Is this a bad time?" She raised a brow, studying the younger man. "Who's this?" Nan asked, as the man asked Bobby the same thing at the same time.

Bobby simply told her, "I hope you got the whiskey, girl."

A while later, she was perched on the worn couch, cupping a glass of whiskey and apple juice in her hand. The man turned out to be Dean Winchester – Bobby had mentioned him to her once while he was in one of his sad, drunken moods one night. One of two brothers that Bobby looked after like they were his own, until two became one and the one hadn't been heard from in months.

Other than that, she didn't know much. Dean was still giving her strange looks, like he couldn't understand what the puny looking girl in front of him was doing there. And to be honest, neither did she, half the time.

Her decision had certainly been rash, but she couldn't quite say she regretted it. There wasn't anything left for her in Luverne, anyway; her parents were gone, leaving nothing but her crappy job as a waitress and a few flaky friends. She had narrowed her decision down to one reason, one cause: the pain she'd felt about what happened to her parents had devastated her.

Nan still cried about it, sometimes, even three months later. But becoming a hunter meant that maybe, just maybe, she could prevent these things happening to other people, and that justification was enough for her. The satisfaction she got out of the few hunting trips she'd been on with Bobby helped her retain her sanity, and the fervent thanks they got never failed to make her feel good.

She took another sip out of her glass, listening to Dean talk about a strange presence he'd felt after he'd been raised from Hell. It was almost funny, how three months ago she would have only heard a conversation like this and take it seriously was if it had been on a TV show. But she'd read too many of the books scattered around Bobby's house and seen enough crazy things in the past few months that she couldn't not believe that unbelievable things like this happened.

A few more words were exchanged, and then Dean took off his jacket and lifted up his sleeve, revealing what looked to be a handprint burned into his skin.

"What the hell?" Bobby stood from the desk he was leaning against and got closer for a better look. She herself leaned further on the couch to see it closer, then decided to just stand after almost falling off.

"Well, that doesn't look painful or anything," Nan chimed in, peeping at it from over the rim of her glass. It was the first thing she had said throughout this whole conversation. She almost felt awkward being here, listening in – but curiousity had always been one of her stronger attributes, for better or worse, and so she had stayed.

Dean had almost forgotten she was there, she'd been so quiet. He glanced at her, sizing her up; she was on the short side, a little too skinny and lacking more than a little bit in the chest area. Long brown hair that fell to about mid-arm's length framed a small face with big hazel eyes, and she wore a plain pair of tan shorts and a black tee shirt.

"Yeah," Dean said, "It's like a demon just yanked me out. Or rode me out," He shook his head, letting the sleeve fall back in place.

"But why?" Bobby muttered in wonder, looking back to Dean's face.

"To hold up their end of the bargain."

"You think Sam made a deal?" The other brother, if she remembered correctly; she had never met him, but she supposed that he must've loved Dean an awful lot to exchange his soul for his brother to come back.

"It's what I would've done," Dean confirmed grimly.

She was still marvelling at how well Dean knew his brother. "Wedge Antilles? Really?" She mouthed at Bobby, who simply waved a hand at her with a muttered, "Idjit," under his breath. A minute on the computer, and then it was announced to her that they were leaving for Pontiac, Illinois to find Sam.

"Stay here, and don't do nothing stupid," Bobby warned her.

"S-stay here?" She squawked a bit indignantly. "Can't I go with you?" She pleaded, looking from Bobby's face to Dean's. "An extra hand won't hurt!" She toed the floor innocently. "Besides, even if you don't let me come, that doesn't mean I can't follow you."

"Doesn't mean we can't tie you down til we get back, sister," Dean added, raising a brow at her.

"That would be inhumane! I mean, who knows how long that could be?"

"Panic Room's got food, you'll be fine," Bobby threatened, but she had already shrugged on her black leather bomber and gave them a pointed look, grabbing her tossed aside black lace up boots.

As much as Bobby scared the crap out of her sometimes (especially in one of his moods), she didn't want to be left behind. She didn't want to be treated like a child, either. Bobby and herself had just gone djinn hunting not less than a week ago, so she didn't see why she had to stay behind when she could at least … mostly … take care of herself.

"Well? What are we waiting for?"

Hours and lots of broken glass later, Bobby, Dean and herself were driving down the highway in Bobby's car as Dean called up his brother. Sam seemed nice enough, other than the initial attempt to carve Dean up in disbelief – not to mention the way he gave her the same weird look his brother had.

It hadn't been Sam that had brought back Dean, though, which made her wonder how many things were out there that she still had yet to find out about. It had to be something incredibly powerful, that was for sure.

She was brought out of her mulling when she heard the elder Winchester talk about summoning whatever was currently harrassing him. "It's time we face it head on," He said, and Bobby gave him an incredulous look.

Nan didn't know Dean all that well, though he appeared to be a good guy. The worse thing the guy had said to her was that she talked too much, but this idea of his didn't exactly sound like the brightest.

"You can't be serious."

"As a heart attack," Dean replied seriously. She leaned forward from the back so that her head was in between the two men, looking from Bobby to the younger man, before settling her gaze on Dean.

"Um, Dean... heart attacks usually have a good chance at killing people."

"Nan's right, Dean. We don't even know what it is! It could be a demon. It could be anything."

"That's why we gotta be ready for anything," He shot back, brandishing a knife etched with symbols on the blade. "We got the big time magic knife, you got an arsenal in the trunk. Hell, maybe Nan's chatter can kill 'em."

"Hey! I resent that," She pouted, flopping back into the seat.

"This is a bad idea," Bobby grumbled, shaking his head.

"I couldn't agree more, but what other choice do we have?"

"We could choose life," The older hunter said sarcastically.

"Yeah, life is nice," Nan sighed out, though she already had a feeling that no matter what her or Bobby said, they'd end up calling whatever this thing was to them.

"Whatever this is, whatever it wants, it's after me. That much we know, right?" Without waiting for an answer, Dean continued, "Well, I got no place to hide. I can either get caught with my pants down again-" At that, Nan let out a little snort which went ignored, "Or we can make our stand."

And standing was all they'd done for what seemed like hours upon hours after marking up what was pretty much the entirety of the inside of the building. Nan paced around impatiently like she had been doing for the past half hour, until Bobby shot her one of his patented glares.

"Sit still, girl. Whatever it is we're waiting for ain't gonna come any quicker 'cause you're moving around."

"Yeah, I know..." She drew herself up to sit on one of the tables, next to Bobby. She couldn't help it. She was impatient. Always had been, and probably always would be. Waiting around here like this didn't mix well with her – she felt like a sitting duck, just waiting for whatever it was to sneak up on them.

Bobby began whistling as Dean fidgeted with the knife before looking up at them. "You sure you did the ritual right?" At Bobby's look, Dean muttered out an apology, and under his breath, "Touchy touchy, huh?" Bobby ignored him, instead giving her an irritated glance as she giggled.

Then, suddenly, thunder boomed out of nowhere around them. They all stood at attention, and she glanced up nervously at the rickety roofing. "Wishful thinking, but maybe it's just the wind," Dean said, but he was still looking around warily.

"It was your thinking that got us here in the first place!" She exclaimed. Behind them, the lights began to blow out. The large doors of the entrance slowly creaked open, and all three held their guns close while wincing at the sparks falling around them.

The lights flashed spastically, giving her a glimpse of the man striding towards them through the open doors. A long, tan trenchcoat seemed carelessly thrown on, along with what looked to be a suit that she got a split second look at. The closer he got, Nan saw that he just looked like a normal man, someone you'd see working a nine to five job and returning to his home in the suburbs after.

Bobby and Dean began to shoot, riddling him with bullets; after a moment of hesitation towards shooting him, she too raised her gun and fired. To her wonder and horror, he did not flinch once, nor did the bullets slow him down at all.

The three of them exchanged befuddled, panicked looks before Dean grabbed the knife from the table. The man in the trenchcoat was now right next to them, and both him and Dean shifted to face each other, though Dean's stance was way more cautious looking than his.

"Who are you?" He demanded, and Nan stared at the man with wide eyes. Up close, his face seemed to have an earnest, innocent quality to it, and eyes that were blue enough that she could tell they matched his tie even in the dark.

"I'm the one who gripped you tight and raised you from perdition," Came the gravelly response. There would be something soothing about it, Nan thought; at least, if they weren't in this predicament of facing someone – or something – that was strong enough to actually haul Dean back up from Hell.

"Yeah, thanks for that," Dean said in a snarky tone while Nan had closed her mouth and wondered what the hell he was. In one fluid motion, the knife plunged down into the other man's body. Again, there were no sounds of pain, or even any movement that indicated any. He simply glanced down at the offending object and slid it out, dropping it to the floor.

From behind him, Nan spied Bobby go for a hit from the back to catch him off guard. It failed to do anything at all, however, since he sensed it coming and gripped the weapon, using it to keep Bobby close. Turning, he raised to fingers to Bobby's forehead, and he sagged down as his eyes rolled towards the back of his head.

"Bobby!" She cried out, rushing forward – but Dean, despite the shocked look on his face, held an arm out in front of her. The man took his eyes off of Bobby to face them again, and he appeared to notice her for the first time. They stared at each other for only a moment, but it felt like it might as well have been an hour. Something about his eyes made her feel incredibly vulnerable, and she couldn't help but shrink back as he looked at Dean.

"We need to talk, Dean," Those blue eyes slid over to her once more. "Alone."

He stepped towards her, and whatever he had done to Bobby she sure as hell didn't want to happen to her – and so, thinking as quickly as she could, she closed her eyes and crumpled down, playing dead – or in this case, unconscious. It seemed to work, because the footsteps stopped; Dean obviously believed it, since he had knelt down at her side and tried shaking her. Nan let her body loll about with the motions so as to be convincing as possible, and heard him stand back up.

A minute later, she heard that deep, rough voice again. "Your friend is alive." She guessed Dean had been checking on Bobby, who was most definitely not faking.

"Who are you?" Dean repeated, and she could hear the distrust oozing out of his voice.

"Castiel." Castiel. All she could think was that it was certainly a strange name, but then again, nothing seemed to be normal about the man besides his appearance.

"Yeah, I figured that much," The elder Winchester spit out, "I mean, what are you?"

"I'm an angel of the Lord," Castiel uttered calmly. After hearing that, she almost sat up, or spasmed, or something in response to that, but urged her body to remain still.

A few more beats of tense silence, then, "Get the hell out of here. There's no such thing."

"This is your problem, Dean," The... angel told him almost patiently, "You have no faith."

A particularly loud bolt of thunder screamed around them, and out of surprise, she instinctively opened her eyes. The first thing she saw was Castiel swathed in the light from the bolts, and behind him – behind him was something she would have never believed, had she never have seen it with her own eyes.

Shadowy wings unfurled behind him as the thunder and lightning cracked, their size so great they encompassed the entire wall and a large portion of the ceiling.

Her last thought was, Holy... Angels really do exist … before everything went black, and, this time – she actually did faint.

A/N: Well, I hope that wasn't too terribly boring for a first chapter. I also hope Nan doesn't seem like a Mary Sue, and that everyone is in character. Not 100% sure what direction I'm going with this story, but if people like it I'll continue. And, ah, if anyone's curious as to what Nanette looks like, I pretty much picture Mila Kunis (she is fabulous and I love her). A part of me feels like that alone is Mary Sue-ish...

I hope the character interactions aren't shallow; it's only the first chapter, there's plenty of time to deepen that - if people want me to keep writing this, that is.

Please review, I'd love to hear what you think, and if I really should continue or not. :)