-X-

Silence filters in, permeating into Sam's eardrums — but Castiel's scratchy voice echoes faintly with the words declared moments ago.

"…And that's it then," Sam breathes out, his weight creaking his chair. His fingers push through his brown hair, trembling. "I went rogue. How could I do that to everyone?"

He isn't sure if the question is posed to anyone particular.

Doesn't matter. The angel tries to provide an answer, anyway. "You only saw what would be advantageous."

"Killing Bobby would have been okay with me?" Sam lets out a disgusted choke. "Yeah, sure but in what sick, twisted reality?"

"At the time, I expect you must have not thought of it in that manner."

Sam's heart hammers in his throat beginning to tighten. He doesn't realize he's clenching the walls of it. His red-rimmed eyes squeeze shut. "I feel like I'm going to puke," he mutters.

Castiel asks, quietly, "Should I leave you?" Sam's gut twists into phantom, ugly knots. Hazel eyes slip open, slowly, cautiously. Sam stares up at him, face pinched but dead-set on remaining expressionless. A muscle in his cheek quivers violently as a line of wet warmth trails from the corner of an eye, and as Castiel's thumb finds itself rubbing away that line, placidly, gently.

"Would you like that hug now?"

It takes a minute, a hesitant and silent and maybe-I-just-shouldn't minute. Sam's chair creaks again, his weight vanishing from it.

The height difference between them — at best — is so damn awful, but Castiel's fleeting and peculiar brand of enthusiasm for further human-like gestures seems genuine. The hook and placement of arms when they stand close becomes clumsy; Castiel awkwardly pats Sam's back, right where his shoulder blades are located, and it feels a hair away from a rattling strike better suited for unclogging someone's windpipe. Sam's nose hovers over to top of Castiel's shoulder when he hides a slightly dumbfounded smile, tilting his head down.

The wrinkled, beige material on the trench coat has a light scent clinging to it, something like pine. Something earthy.

"I think I understand now," Castiel's voice rumbles towards Sam's ear.

Loosening his arms, waiting for his companion to follow, Sam gives a purposeful 'hmm?'

The angel does not read the signal of letting go. "Why someone would want these hugs," he adds on, perceptively, and Sam shifts his head to glance thoughtfully at him. "They're… satisfying."

Sam's eyebrows tick up as he blinks and steps out of the hug, deepening his smile to be convincing when Castiel examines his reaction. "Yeah, I guess so," Sam murmurs.

"…Should we hug again?"

"Once is good enough, Cas."

-X-


Because everyone needed to hug it out in that episode and only Sam and Dean got to do it, pssh. I'm slowly beginning to ship a Dean/Cas/Sam threesome. And I'm okie dokie with this.