Dean Winchester woke up to the sound of his alarm clock going off. He rolled over and slammed his hand down on the snooze button, seven thirty was way too early to be getting up on a Saturday.
He rolled back over and glared at the empty space in the other side of the bed.
What's the point of even getting up? Dean wondered to himself.
He laid there, staring at the opposite side of the bed for a few minutes longer, then forced himself to get out of the bed.
He walked straight to the washroom and turned the tap on. He splashed some water onto his face, then tightly gripped either side of the sink in his hands.
Dean stared into his reflection at the baggy-eyed man looking back.
"I can do this," He told himself. "I'll throw on a fake smile because I'm alright. I have to be alright. I'll make it through the day, just like I do every other day. Today will not be the day that I finally break down."
Once Dean had convinced himself as much as he thought possible, he shut the tap off and headed towards the shower.
He turned the water on and immediately stripped off his boxers and stepped in. He didn't wait for the water to warm up, he saw no point.
He quickly showered, then stepped out and grabbed a towel.
As he was walking back into his bedroom he stopped and shared one more look with his reflection. He broke the disheartened gaze, then continued walking.
He walked straight past the first dresser, which had gathered quite a few layers of dust in the time that it had been left untouched. At the second dresser he opened the drawers pulling out the first things he saw, a pair of light blue jeans, a tight green t-shirt, and a pair of black boxers.
He quickly threw them on and headed to the kitchen. He popped two pieces of bread into the toaster, then made himself some coffee.
He poured the coffee into a travel mug and quickly buttered the toast, then threw on his leather jacket.
He grabbed the keys to his Impala off of the table by the door and then walked out of his apartment, breakfast in hand.
On the way down the flight of stairs he scarfed down the toast, it was all gone by the time he reached the parking lot.
He got into his car and chugged a large amount of coffee, not caring that it was burning his throat. He made sure that the lid of the mug was securely closed, then placed it in the cup holder and started up his car.
Once Dean arrived at work he sat in the car for a few minutes to psyche himself up, after all he was still early.
He had a new class today, which meant meeting new people. Dean didn't much care for new people. If he wound up caring about any of them they would just be more people to lose. At least Gabe would be there, though.
Finally Dean realized how stupid it was to wait in the car and grabbed his coffee, stepping out of the car. He slathered on the fake smile, which seemed to be the only type of smile he knew most of the time now.
When he walked into his classroom, Dean noticed that there were around fifteen students. All were approximately his age and there was a fairly even split in gender.
Dean plopped down into his comfy desk chair, he still had about five minutes before class started and he planned on spending them anti-socially.
"You don't look so good, Dean-o," Gabe said, approaching the desk. So much for being anti-social.
"Shocker, Gabe," Dean responded, sarcastically. "This is just how I am now."
"No, it's worse than before," Gabe said, sounding concerned. "Are the nightmares back?"
"What does it matter?" Dean asked, dodging having to answer the question.
"You have to stop beating yourself up, man," Gabe said.
"Why? It was my fault. And besides, it's not like I can control my nightmares," Dean responded.
Gabe scowled at him, "It wasn't your fault."
"Whatever," Dean said, sounding unconvinced. "So is that why you signed up for this class? Just to keep tabs on my mental health?"
"And to make sure that you don't go into grumpy-old-man-teacher-mode," Gabe said, with a teasing grin.
Dean rolled his eyes and gave his friend one of his rare genuine smiles, although it was a sheepish one it had to count as something. "Good to know that I've got a babysitter."
Gabe looked down at his watch then said, "Oh, learning time. I'd better take my seat. Don't want to get the new teach mad at me."
Dean was surprised to find himself still actually smiling. That must be why Sam had talked Gabe into coming to this class, because Gabe had the magic power of distracting Dean and being able to cheer him up. Just like Sam had the magic power of convincing Gabe to do things.
Dean got out of his chair and wrote 'Dean Winchester' on the board behind his desk. The class instantly silenced at the sight of this.
"Alright, my name's Dean Winchester," Dean said, capturing the classes attention. "You can call me Dean, I don't want to be called Mr. Winchester."
Gabe eagerly raised his hand.
Dean rolled his eyes, then asked, "What, Gabe?"
"Can I call you-" Gabe started before he was cut off.
"No," Dean said.
"But you didn't even hear what I was going to ask," Gabe protested.
"I know the kind of ideas that go through that mind," Dean said.
"I was just going to say Mr. Teacher Man," Gabe pouted.
"Whatever," Dean said, wanting to get back to teacher mode instead of arguing with his friend. Not that he was very good at teacher mode. "I guess that I should probably learn your names, too, so lets just go around and introduce ourselves." Dean didn't like how kindergarten the activity was, but he had to figure out their names somehow, and eavesdropping didn't seem like the best idea.
As the students introduced themselves Dean mentally repeated their names in his head.
Anna, Crowley, Gabe, Adam..
The next one to introduce himself seemed overdressed for an early morning writing class. Although his brown hair was ruffled, he wore a suit and trench coat.
"I'm Castiel, but I much prefer Cas," The strange man said in a husky voice.
The rest of the class introduced themselves as well.
Dean decided to have each of them write a short story so that he could see where their writing skill was at. At the end of the class they all had finished and handed him the pages on the way out.
Dean had survived the first week's class, but hadn't exactly done well. He was starting to think that having Gabe there might be more of a disadvantage.
Once he got home he turned on his laptop and opened up a blank word document. He stared at it for a long time before slamming his laptop shut and going to grab a beer.
The next Saturday, Dean's morning routine was virtually identical to the one the week before. Once class started Dean handed back the stories that he had read, he was glad to have found that everyone in the class could actually write to some degree. He'd had some pretty brutal students before.
He was slightly concerned about the level of detail that Crowley had gone into in his story about torture, though. He'd remember not to piss that guy off.
As he handed each student their paper he gave them some feedback.
Crowley's story had good detail, Anna's had an interesting plot-line.
Once he got to Cas he handed back the story and said, "You know some of the characters had quite the mouthful for names, but they were well-developed. You might want to use shorter names next time."
"Well, Mr. Winchester, not everyone has short names like 'Bob' or 'Joe'," Cas responded calmly.
"Well, Castiel," Dean said, choosing to act like a five year old and use the name that Cas didn't like, since Cas had used the one that he didn't. "That's not what I was saying." His tone came out angry, it looked like today might just be the day that he snaps.
"Mr. Winchester," Cas said, gritting his teeth as he did so.
Dean was cut off by Gabe loudly coughing to get his attention, then waggling his eyebrows as he asked, "Is this maybe a... sexual tension?"
"Shut up, Gabe," Dean said, pissily, before moving onto the next student.
For the rest of the class Dean was in a bad mood, he was sick of pretending to be happy and he'd barely slept in months. All of the rage that he was finally letting out seemed to be directed towards the one student who had simply pointed out that not all names have to be short.
Every comment that the poor student made would be shot down by the mad teacher.
Once class was over Cas left the room, also seeming angry now. All of the students headed straight out of the room, except for Gabe that is.
"What the hell was that?" Gabe hissed at Dean.
"Leave me alone," Dean said, falling back into his chair.
"Like you did to Cas?" Gabe asked. "He said one thing and you went complete bitch mode for the rest of class."
"I know," Dean said sighing. "Because I'm an idiot. And if you're here to watch my mental health, then I have news for you. It's going bye-bye."
"That's because your entire life is wrapped around her memory," Gabe said.
"Shut up," Dean said, he wasn't going to have this conversation. Not now. "I'm fine."
Dean and Gabe both knew just how bad of condition Dean was in, that he wasn't 'fine'. But Gabe also knew that Dean was a stubborn bastard and that pushing him now was not a good idea.
Gabe sighed, then said, "See ya later, Dean-o."
Dean watched his friend leave the classroom, then slammed his head down on the desk.
What had he done? Stupid, stupid, stupid. He was supposed to be helping his students, not acting like a complete ass-hole.
Suddenly an idea popped into Dean's head, all he had to do was figure out one thing.
Cas was sitting behind a desk at his office when his phone vibrated in his pocket.
He pulled it out to see a text from a number that he didn't recognize.
Dean was being a total douche-bag, you should just ignore his bitchiness.
Cas, hit reply, then quickly typed something.
Dean's phone went off a second later.
Who is this?
Dean wasn't sure how to answer this, he had planned on just anonymously saying the one thing to hopefully make Cas feel better. He should have seen the question coming. Finally he decided what to type back.
Just someone in your class.
That's real helpful... How did you even get my number?
Wouldn't you like to know?
Well duh, when some random number starts texting me I tend to want to know who they are and how the hell they found out my number.
Isn't it funner this way? More mysterious?
Maybe for you.
Maybe. So why are you even in writing class, Mr. Suit?
Why are you?
You're terrible at answering questions.
Fine, I guess it's because at one point I actually used to enjoy writing.
If you USED TO enjoy writing then why are you in a class now?
I don't know, I don't really enjoy anything anymore. I guess I'm trying to force myself to enjoy something again.
See? Answering questions isn't that difficult.
Not when the other person has zero idea of who you are. Even if you wanted to tell people you wouldn't know what name to say.
Dean continued to text Cas for the rest of the day. He had meant for it just to be the one text, but now he was discovering that he liked being able to talk to someone who doesn't know his entire story. Who doesn't know his real name. And besides, Cas was actually interesting. This was probably a very bad idea, but that had never stopped Dean from doing something stupid in the past.
A/N: Please read and review! I'd love to know if you'd like me to continue! Thanks for reading either way, and I hope that you enjoyed it! :D
I know that the thing that I probably least need right now is to start another story, but I had to. What can I say, I'm addicted to starting stories. And this time I'm not going to lie to myself about it being a short story, it's probably going to be fairly long. I'm now currently actively updating five ffs including this one, but I'll try to update as soon as possible. As long as I'm not too busy that should hopefully be soon.