Oh, yeah, everything is unbeta'd. All my mistakes are my own. Also, didn't do quite as many re-reads and edits so there will probably be more mistakes than usual.

Disclaimer: Kripke owns all Supernatural characters. I'm only borrowing them.

Pairing: Dean/Castiel - No Explicit scenes. Mostly platonic at this point. Please let me know what you think, constructively.

Overall Warnings: Rated T for swearing, only implied S and M undertones, and other adult subject matter.

Hope it was worth the wait!

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Chapter 20 – Uriel

Dean had barely fixed his glare on Chuck for a second when the entire house started to shake and shudder as though a massive earthquake was taking place. Sam jerked up in surprise and blinked groggily, attempting to figure out what the hell was going on, while the others braced themselves where they stood. Chuck, Dean noticed, stared fearfully at the ceiling while he heard Cas curse hotly. Dean growled out irritably, "Now what? I know South Dakota isn't known for earthquakes so . . ."

"Gabriel," Cas started uncertainly.

"Yeah, I know," Gabriel sighed heavily with resignation. "Get ready but don't make it look like you're ready. You know obvious."

"How in the hell do I do that?" Cas returned with irritable exasperation. Gabriel glared in response then hit Cas in the forehead with his palm. Cas glared slightly before his eyes unfocused then refocused. Cas nodded with the comment, "Oh."

Dean rolled his eyes slightly at his mate while realizing Gabriel must have passed on a message to Cas with the palm hit.

Before he could ask anything else, the front door flew open and a very well-dressed African American casually strolled inside the house like he owned it. He paused at the study entryway as he surveyed the occupants of the room. The humans, and Cas, felt his immense disgust as his eyes swept past them to center on the archangel in the room.

"Hello, Gabriel," he greeted solemnly then regarded Castiel once again with even more distain. "Please tell me that you are bringing the traitor home for punishment and re-indoctrination. I will gladly accompany you on your successful return to our highest heavenly ranks."

"Of course," Gabriel answered easily and watched Uriel relax his stance slightly then survey the rest of the room as Dean growled warningly. Dean quickly swallowed his ire at Cas's hand signal but the damage was done.

Uriel narrowed his eyes at Dean and studied the human vessel more intently then demanded harshly, "What traitor has betrayed the Host and claimed our eldest brother's vessel as their own? Why is it still standing? Breathing? It should have been destroyed immediately. How was this allowed to happen?" Uriel charged forward towards Dean during his tirade while pulling out his angel sword. His intent was very clear to all present.

Before Uriel was in stabbing range of Dean who had prepared himself by allowing Zachariah's angel sword to fall into his palm from inside his sleeve, Castiel flew to his mate's defense and appeared instantly in front of Dean with his own sword drawn. "Don't," he warned menacingly.

"Like I would even acknowledge an oozing pus sore like you," Uriel sneered dismissively while he continued his advance. He was clearly intent on eliminating both Castiel and Dean. Zealous fervor blazed hotly from his dark eyes.

"Then acknowledge me, Uriel," Gabriel challenged firmly as he appeared beside his mated brother with his archangel blade drawn. He stood directly in between the mated couple and Uriel. There was no way he was going to let his little brother suffer any more pain than he already had.

Uriel narrowed his eyes then called out abruptly, "Rafael!" The other angels in the room flinched slightly then steeled themselves for the battle ahead. Uriel smirked menacingly at their obvious discomfort, certain in the knowledge that his errant brothers would soon be taught the error of their traitorous ways. In the end, they would bow down in supplication to the new Order, as they should.

Dean reached forward and touched his mate's shoulder. Cas glanced back at him and warned quickly through their bond, Be ready. Stay by me. This will be bloody.

Dean nodded firmly while he readied the sword in his hand so that it was no longer stuck in his sleeve. He'd be damned if he was giving up Castiel after all they'd been through. Plus, he still needed to get even with the damn fool for Vegas'ing him and telling everyone about it.

Another well-dressed African American entered the house and commented drily, "Well, well, well, if it isn't my long, long lost brother and the . . . traitor. Somehow, I get the feeling that you've once again chosen the wrong side, Gabriel. So, as much as I'd love to welcome you back, I don't see that happening."

"Rafael," Gabriel greeted reservedly. "How do you fit into all of this? I mean, Uriel here is obviously a tool but you . . . you are so . . . above all that. So what's your take, brother? What part of Heaven were you given?"

"Whichever part I want, obviously," Rafael taunted mockingly. "You see, I'm the one in charge of, well, everything," he announced proudly as he strode through the room, grimacing over the dirty, dusty interior.

"Really?" Gabriel verified tauntingly. "I thought Michael was in charge. What happened to him?"

"Oh, nothing," Rafael answered with unconvincing innocence. He rolled his eyes upward briefly. "He's still up there. Waiting for reports. From me. Who, of course, will tell him in great detail how horribly his own brothers betrayed him, once again." Then he smirked evilly.

"Wait," Gabriel interrupted instantly, picking up on the slip. "What do you mean, 'once again'?"

Rafael shrugged noncommittally and dismissed easily, "It doesn't matter. You are already dead, brother. Confirming it to Michael will change nothing."

"Meaning that you will tell him what you want him to hear and only that," Gabriel filled in easily.

Rafael arched an eyebrow then verified smugly, "Of course."

"You did all this," Castiel surmised with dread. After all, fighting a few rogue angels was one thing. Fighting rogue archs was guaranteed death to all. "You had Zachariah capture me and sent me to . . ."

"Your reward, Castiel," Rafael finished with barely disguised hatred that shocked everyone in the room. "For your betrayal. Betrayal of your own kind. For what? A stupid, worthless mudmonkey."

"But I . . ."

"Betrayed no one?" Rafael interrupted caustically. "I didn't give you the chance this time around," he announced briskly as he advanced on the couple. "And yet you still chose this, this grotesque stain once again. Even mated him this time. You are obviously a flawed abomination that needs to be destroyed."

"Not so fast, chuckles," Dean growled out threateningly as he moved up to stand next to his mate. He'd be damned if he was going to cower in the back like some vapid damsel-in-distress. No way was he going to be the girl in this.

"Dean," Castiel warned harshly.

"No," Dean argued hotly. "I want to know what the hell is going on before we kill him."

"You obnoxiously little bacterium will never kill me," Rafael growled out irately. "I will smite you where you stand."

"But the bacterium does have a point," Gabriel pointed out firmly while he moved to be in between the advancing angels and the mated couple behind him. "What's with the rewind? I know you don't have enough power to do this alone so what did you tell Mikey that had him help? In fact, what happened the first time around to cause you to go to this extreme?"

"None of your . . ." Rafael snarled angrily as he charged toward Castiel, only to be frozen within a few steps.

"It might not be his business but it is mine, Rafael," Michael announced authoritatively as he appeared in the room where Rafael had been while Balthazar appeared by Castiel's side, opposite Dean.

"Let me go, Michael," Rafael growled slightly. "We have to eliminate the traitor and his human blight."

Michael narrowed his eyes as he observed the others in the room. They narrowed even more as they took in the bond between his vessel and his little brother. He refocused on Rafael and decided aloud, "While that might be true, I still want to know what exactly has been going on, in your own words."

"What do you mean, brother?" Rafael asked innocently as he slowly turned to face Michael. Luckily, his brothers, Michael and Gabriel, allowed him the movement. "I am only carrying out your wishes. Our mission will be complete if you will only allow me to continue on. Our righteous path is clear."

Michael slowly cocked his head to the side contemplatively as he questioned curiously, "Continue on with what, brother?" When he saw Rafael start to answer, he qualified specifically, "Continue to torture our younger brother for sins not yet committed? Continue on your path to kill my vessel? Or continue to work with demons to create even more dangerous, disastrous abominations?" Although his voice started out casually, he ended with an irate hiss.

"Continue . . ." Rafael immediately started, only to stop abruptly when he realized Michael was on to him. He drew himself up and narrowed his eyes at his so-called 'leader', who was only that due to indiscriminate birth order. "Who . . ." He redirected hesitantly then he spotted Balthazar and knew he'd been found out. He hissed irritably then directed his attention to Uriel. He delivered a quick order psychically before he turned back to Michael who was still waiting for an answer.

"How about you tell me why you had our innocent little brother sent to that . . . Hell dimension?" Michael suggested harshly.

"He is far from innocent," Rafael hissed warningly. "He is defective. He would destroy everything. Him and that, that, filthy, pig, human who is an infection that destroys everything and everyone that comes in contact with him. They destroy everything. We cannot win as long as they live!"

Michael narrowed his eyes at the last statement and saw the fanatically glow in his arch brother's eyes. He knew whatever happened where this particular Rafael came from was very bad and didn't bode well for them, any of them. He nodded in acknowledgement of his brother's fanaticism and answered slowly, "Then it was not meant to be.'

"Wh-What?" Rafael stuttered in shock.

"If our little brother and a single human, or even a single human family, can stop this from happening, then it was not meant to be," Michael explained with slow patience.

"How can you say that?" Rafael stammered with shocked disbelief.

"Because it is true," Michael insisted simply. "Because the only way something so simple could possibly derail the work of Heaven's most powerful angels is because our Father does not want it to happen and we will respect His wishes."

"But . . ."

"There are no 'but's to this," Michael reasserted harshly. "We will abide by His decision as we are destined to do."

Rafael shot another glance at Uriel who gave a minuscule nod then Rafael drew up and growled hotly, "I don't think so. We were destined to rule this pathetic world and its pathetically weak, mindless inhabitants. It is time to set things right!"

In a blink of an eye, Rafael broke his bonds and attacked the biggest threat, rushing at Michael. Gabriel flew to Michael's defense while Uriel attacked Castiel and Dean. Two other angels appeared instantly and attacked Balthazar from behind and the side.

"Help Balthazar," Michael ordered Gabriel without pausing his fight with Rafael. Gabriel nodded and quickly engaged one of the angels ganging up on Balthazar. Castiel and Dean fought Uriel when another angel appeared in the room beside Uriel. It quickly sliced down Dean's exposed side.

"Damn it," Dean cursed hotly while he deflected the next attack and suggested caustically, "Anyone want to fix the freakin' angel proofing yet. It's getting crowded in here."

John, Bobby and Sam rushed out of the room and separated into different directions. Adam and Chuck dived for cover while they tried to figure out how to help without getting killed in the process. Dean was just glad that the others were out of the danger zone and refocused on his fight while trying to keep an eye on Castiel's fight simultaneously.

Another angel appeared behind Michael and attacked Michael's unguarded back. "Behind you, Mikey," Gabriel shouted out in warning while dodging his own attacker.

Michael barely evaded the back attack, only to have Rafael grab him from behind and place an arch blade across his neck. "Stand down," Rafael ordered harshly to the room at large.

"Hey, assbut," Adam called out loudly as he throw a flaming Molotov bottle at Rafael.

Rafael didn't turn fast enough as the flaming holy oil coated his entire back. His arms flew up in reaction, allowing Michael to spin out of holy oil flame range. Rafael screamed in pain then disappeared from view while he tried to extinguish the painful brew.

Michael quickly dispatched the other treacherous angel. Two more angels appeared but they took positions beside Balthazar and Castiel. The red headed female angel announced quickly, "The sigils have been remade. Others cannot get in."

Uriel knocked Castiel's blade away and slammed his fist into Castiel's face. Dean quickly turned and kicked the angel off balance. The angel stumbled into Anna who spun and stabbed the traitor in the back of his neck with her angel blade. Bright white light blazed out of Uriel's open mouth and eyes, slowly filling the room, as the angel died.

"Dean, shut your eyes!" Castiel ordered quickly while he turned to make sure his mate followed his order.

"Adam, Chuck, shut your eyes," Dean called out hoarsely while doing what his mate told him to.

The bright white light exploded with a loud screeching sound and Uriel's vessel fell to the study floor. Michael quickly commanded harshly, "All angels stand down now or you will die as well!"

Whether it was Michael's unyielding authority, their leader's absence or the sight of their brother's death, the other angels instantly submitted and dropped their swords at their feet. "Gather them, Anna, Balthazar, Samandriel. We will deal with them later." The other angels rounded them up and lead them into the kitchen to await Michael's judgment.

Michael then turned to the other humans charging back into the room, breathing heavily, as well as the others that had remained during the fight. He saw Castiel heal Dean with a soft touch on his side while his vessel, Dean, gifted Castiel with a slight smile in return. He nodded briefly toward Chuck before focusing on Dean, "Well, I'd say this meeting is long overdue."

Dean frowned slightly at a vague sense of déjà vu before he mentally shook it off. "Whatever," he dismissed irritably. "Are you going to fix all this? 'Cuz I'm really sick of all you featherbrains at this point."

"Really?" Michael barely quelled his irritation over this human's blatant lack of respect and queried disbelievingly. "Even Castiel?"

"He's the exception," Dean growled aggressively as he moved in between Michael and Castiel. "So keep your distance. He's mine and doesn't deserve . . ."

"Dean," Castiel warned softly while he gripped his mate's shoulder, not wanting another confrontation so soon. He hated to see his mate harmed which was happening way too much lately. Like the Pit hadn't been hard enough, he really expected more since they'd escaped.

"No, he doesn't," Michael interrupted both of them readily. "You are completely right."

"Your crap . . . wait, what?" Dean drew up abruptly with a shocked blink.

Michael gave a slight smile at the bemused human before he stared into his younger brother's shocked eyes. He continued seriously, "Castiel, Balthazar managed to . . . enlighten me as to what my brothers were doing. I honestly had no idea that you were imprisoned, much less what they were doing in those dimensions to you, and others."

"Yeah, right, like we believe you," Dean sneered dismissively, not taking his eyes from Michael who he still didn't trust one bit.

"Dean," Castiel commanded firmly.

Dean rolled his eyes and finally turned, demanding hotly, "What, Cas? I know you don't trust these winged monkeys any more than I do and I'll be damned if I'm going to let them hurt you again."

"I don't need you to defend me, Dean," Castiel countered hotly in return. "I am an angel. I am more powerful than you. I can take care of myself."

"Hey, I've seen what they did to you and I don't give a damn what you are . . ." Dean wound up as he laid into his angel. This argument was a perfect outlet for the post-battle adrenalin that he normally used sex for. Plus, he still needed to pay his angel back for the secret elopement.

Michael turned toward Gabriel as Dean and Castiel continued to bicker back and forth, like an old married couple, then asked curiously, "Do they always do this?"

"When they aren't eye-sexing, yes," Gabriel answered dryly.

"Eye-sex . . ." Michael started to question, only to be interrupted by Balthazar who currently had a tumbler of alcohol in his hand.

"Please, don't mention that again. It's difficult enough when we have to witness it, why pray tell must we talk about it as well?" Balthazar argued primly.

"Now, now, just because he stole your prom date, no need to . . ." Gabriel mocked tauntingly as only an older brother could.

"My prom date? Hardly," Balthazar argued hotly. "You are intentionally rewriting established history, you annoying, little prat."

"See, see," the trickster angel pointed out enthusiastically, practically bouncing in his spot. "You admit that you have history!"

"Oh, Father," Balthazar prayed for patience, or respite.

Michael wasn't sure which as he moved back from the building arguments. He surveyed the room for at least one reasonable entity and spotted Dean's brothers nearby having a very intent conversation with their elders standing close by. He heard Adam stating enthusiastically, "I'm telling you, they are actually married!"

"No way," Sam argued stubbornly, now completely free of demonic influence. "Dean's not gay."

"Maybe he didn't used to be," Adam remarked suggestively while wiggling his eyebrows playfully. John tried to keep it in but busted out laughing over his youngest's antics. His immense relief over the fact that his sons were finally, apparently safe only added to the spontaneous outburst.

Sam groaned and turned to Bobby, the only seemingly sane person in the room, to demand, "Bobby, please make him stop and tell the truth." Bobby's face flushed bright red before he turned away, muttering something about idjits and more whiskey. That did more to convince Sam than anything. He spotted Michael nearby and wondered with an unconscious grin, "Are we seriously in-laws now?"

Michael glanced back over his shoulder to see Castiel press Dean against the kitchen doorway, apparently still trying to get the stupid human to know his place, and sighed heavily, "It appears so."

Sam's sudden laughter joined his father's while Michael rolled his eyes in exasperation. He felt his brother's wings and arms encircle him as Gabriel commented smugly, "Aw, you love us and you know it."

"It's complete and utter chaos here," Michael complained irritably then called out, "Chuck, are you ready?"

"Wait! Wait just a damn minute," Dean called out immediately, shrugging off his mate's grip, and then stomping across the room. "What the hell are you talking about? Where are you going with Chuck?"

"I'm taking him to his reward, obviously," Michael explained impatiently while wondering why in fact he was. "His job is over. He's now allowed to enter his reward as a result."

"So you're killing him," Dean exploded with astonished dread. "Not on my watch, buddy boy. Go find someone else to torment. Chuck's ours."

Michael rolled his eyes again then demanded to the room at large, "Is he always this way?"

"What way?" Adam wondered curiously.

"Mother hen to everyone and everything," John, on the other hand, immediately caught on. "Yep, pretty much. Even if he doesn't like them, he won't put up with anything harming them."

"What a great characteristic for a, you know, mother," Balthazar commented tauntingly.

"Can it, asshat. You're next," Dean snarled impatiently before he rounded on Michael. "He's not going."

"It's okay, Dean," Chuck interrupted weakly with a small voice. "I know how you feel about me. I don't blame you. We both know I'm not needed, or wanted, here."

"Like hell," Dean snapped irritably. He reached out and grabbed Chuck's robe then pulled him in tight. He hissed under his breath so that only the angels and Chuck could hear it, "You're the only one who actually knows what all those asshats did to us. All of us. You're the only one who can help us. We need you and you know it."

Chuck frowned slightly then answered softly, "What if I can't? What if I don't know? I'm not a real scientist, Dean. You know that. You, of all people, know that."

"No, you're not," Dean agreed easily, loosening his grip on the robe slightly. "But I know you want to help. Otherwise, you wouldn't have kept that separate set of records. The question is, are you still willing to try?"

Chuck blinked and pursed his lips for a moment then asked hesitantly, "Are you willing to . . . forgive . . ." He stopped suddenly, unable to finish as he stared at the face that haunted his dreams so many nights, in so many variations. He swallowed thickly, wondering what the hell he'd been thinking.

Dean arched an eyebrow tauntingly before he smirked and answered flippantly, "Wouldn't have allowed you in my family's home otherwise, dumbass."

He let go of the small, trembling man before he turned to Michael and informed him easily, "Chuck's got a research project to finish. He'll call you later, Mikey."

Michael arched an eyebrow arrogantly then locked eyes with Castiel but all he asked was, "Seriously?" Castiel sighed heavily before he nodded with a wry smile while Gabriel laughed and Balthazar joined Bobby at his alcohol cabinet.

Dean clapped Chuck lightly on the shoulder then spun around with defensive ire at Sam's unexpected question and comment.

"Hey, Dean, since when did you trade being a dick for getting dick? Like I didn't know, you were always overcompensating for something."

"Damn it, Sam!"

The End


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I hope you enjoyed this chapter! Please review and let me know what you think.