Castiel stared in shock, knowing for sure that his life as he knew it was over. Nothing would ever matter, nothing would ever be the same. He could feel himself needing to scream and cry and throw a fit, but he couldn't move. For the rest of his life, he would remember this moment, and he would know that it had made him change like nothing else would.

The morning had started like a perfect moment in time: the autumn sun was up and shining through Dean's bedroom window, where Castiel had awoken to stare at the way Dean's skin glowed in the sun light. Dean was wrapped around his body, a feeling of comfort and contentment suffusing Castiel's entire being. He hugged Dean a little before slipping out of bed and heading towards the shower. He had to wash off their combined saliva and semen before they got to work with his father for the day.

Dean joined him in the shower, and between kisses they washed each other, running soapy hands over each other's bodies and slowly washing each other's hair. It felt good, to be allowed to touch each other and to explore each other's textures. Castiel wished that the moment would last forever, but the warm water would not and so they got out to put on their clothing for the day.

Dean's dad was pretty insistent that they not wear their good clothing, so they got downstairs dressed in jeans and plaid shirts. Sam and Raphael had already eaten most of the breakfast food, so Castiel, Dean, Mr. Winchester, and Balthazar were a little hungry afterwards.

Mrs. Winchester kissed her husband and her boys good-bye, and Castiel said, "See you tonight," to his mother. They loaded up in the cars that they were taking and drove out to the bayou.

They had to borrow a neighbor's dinghy, and Balthazar kept asking questions about the Cajuns that he thought they might run into. Mr. Winchester explained that it was highly unlikely they would even see anyone out there, because the places they were going just weren't that populated. Castiel still enjoyed his explanation of Cajuns, who were highly independent and fiercely loyal to each other. Mr. Winchester's mother was a Cajun, and Mrs. Winchester was full-blooded Cajun, so he didn't expect a lot of trouble while they were out there.

They did run into one other dinghy, manned by a blond Cajun who spoke quickly to Mr. Winchester. Castiel still didn't understand the dialect although now his familiarity with it allowed him to pick out different words so the sentences didn't run together as much as they used to. He still had no idea what the man was saying, but he felt proud that he knew approximately how many words he used to explain what he wanted to say. It made Castiel feel more comfortable, knowing the number of words for some reason, and he tried to match up what he did understand with Mr. Winchester's translations. He was still pretty hopeless at it, but he felt confident that in a few months he would be able to understand more.

The air had cooled a bit, but Castiel would still bet that it was above 75 degrees even in November. He enjoyed the way that the slight wind tore at his hair, and he turned around once to see Dean staring at him. He blushed and looked back out at the river, but Balthazar had seen the look and he was smiling at it.

They stopped at a torn up dock that had looked like it had been there for decades, but Dean assured him it was probably pretty new because things didn't always last long in the bayou without constant supervision. They got out and walked to a barn, small and flecking with red paint.

The air smelled weird, not that things didn't have a distinct scent of rot and fish this close to the bayou, but this smelled stranger, darker, like magic. Castiel didn't like the scent and wanted to run, but he felt Balthazar's hand on his shoulder. "It's okay," he whispered. "Your instincts are kicking in."

Castiel nodded, and then he followed everyone else into the barn, although it felt like razorblades were slicing open his back slowly. He hitched and rolled his shoulders to try and make the feeling go away, but it was useless.

Mr. Winchester pointed out an altar filled with symbols that Castiel didn't like being around; inverted crosses, pentagrams, strange angular drawings that poked at his eyes and made his skin crawl. There was a human skull in the center of the altar and red candles with melted wax in copper candle holders. Castiel felt himself whimper, and he had to bite his tongue to keep from making more noise.

"Take him outside," Balthazar instructed Dean, and Dean nodded and took Castiel out.

Castiel was so embarrassed, but he couldn't hide the relief that he felt as they left the barn. Tears sprung to his eyes, and he wiped them away.

"You knew before we even went in there," Dean said, looking at him. "You knew what was going to be in there."

"I'm sorry," Castiel gasped.

"Shhh…" Dean whispered, wrapping Castiel up in his arms. "I'm here, I'm not going to let anything happen to you."

Castiel buried his face in Dean's shoulder, trying to get control of his body. The action distracted his body without a doubt, but he couldn't keep his mind off of that feeling in the barn.

The boys broke apart as they heard the doors opening. Mr. Winchester glared a little at Castiel, "You gonna be okay, boy?"

Balthazar snorted. "He's going to be fine. The Russian government looks for boys like him and immediately puts them in certain positions within the military. It just means he has exceptional instincts. He's the last person I would fight out of your boys, Mr. Winchester."

Mr. Winchester looked like he was reconsidering his assessment of Castiel, and that told Castiel more than anything that Mr. Winchester respected Balthazar's opinion.

They scouted around the area for what seemed like a small forever, and then Mr. Winchester declared that it was time to eat.

Lunch was another Miss Anna special: cold fried chicken, some sort of red beans and rice, French bread, and a couple of bottles of only slightly alcoholic Muscadine wine. The bread had been slathered in butter and cheese, and everything tasted amazing. Castiel knew he wouldn't be able to eat a lot because his stomach was still upset by that barn, but he smuggled things anyway in case Dean got hungry later.

It was late noon before they came across another person. He was tall with brown hair and a red beard, and he wore old cotton clothing.

"Mr. Winchester, didn't know you were back in town," the stranger greeted him.

"Raoul," Mr. Winchester said. "How's your daddy?"

"He's good. Getting' on in years. There a reason you're out on our property?"

"Somethin' been strange about here lately?" Mr. Winchester asked. "I heard some stuff that people think that I need to investigate, so that's what I'm doing."

Castiel saw that Raoul's eyes narrowed slightly before he kept them as wide open as he could. "No sir, y'ain't really got to be out here for nuh'ting. Ain't nuh'ting goin' on 'round here."

Mr. Winchester nodded his head. "We'll be on our way then. Thanks for the help, Raoul. Tell your daddy I said hey."

"I will, Mr. Winchester, don' worry none 'bout that."

They all stayed silent until they made their way back to the boat. "He was lying, dad," Sam couldn't keep it in anymore.

"I know boy, but you can't be on people's property out here like this. Too many places they can hide your body, and then how you going to explain that to your mama?"

Sam nodded his head, and they all got back into the dinghy.

"We might as well get home t'night," Mr. Winchester said, looking at the sky. "It's a full moon, and I don't want you boys to be outside for it."

There was no chance for it though, because it took them longer to get back to the cars than they had planned. Mr. Winchester was on the look out as he made sure the four boys were in the car before he got into his own, and he followed them back to the Winchester House.

Castiel thought that it was weird that none of the lights were on inside the house. He wasn't the only one, and Dean ran into the house while the rest of them stood staring. It took them a few moments, but Castiel didn't even need to go inside before his stomach was churning again.

He heard Dean's hoarse cries when he walked through the entryway, and he followed the sound into the parlor. He couldn't have told anyone where anyone else was at that point, because all he could hear was the sound of the wind rushing through his ears.

He saw them lying on the rose patterned carpet. His mother and Mrs. Winchester's dresses had been ripped open, and Castiel tried to pull his mother's bodice back over her body, to cover up her nakedness. He didn't understand the red stain on the carpet, didn't understand that he was kneeling in her blood. "Mommy," he whispered. "Mommy, wake up…"

There were sounds coming from behind him, shouts and the sound of someone crying. He felt more than saw Raphael leaving the room, screaming for Anna and his father, and then the sickening sound of a man breaking.

"Mommy," Castiel choked. He shook her shoulder, needing her to open her eyes for just a moment. "Mommy you need to open your eyes," he told her, "I'm here now, you can stop pretending."

"Cas," Dean said, coming over to pull him away from his mother, "Cas, come on, you can't keep touching the body…"

"It's okay," Castiel tried to explain to Dean, "It's okay, she's just pretending…"

"Come here, Cas," Dean murmured in his ear. "I need you."

Nothing could have caught his attention other than Dean saying those words, and Castiel looked up into Dean's panicked and tear-streaked face. "Dean, I don't understand…"

"Shhh…" Dean shushed him, and he pulled Castiel up into his arms. "I need you. Don't think. Just come with me to the front porch…"

Castiel looked at his mother one more time, but Dean was dragging him away. He had Sam's hand, too, and he dragged both of them out to the front porch.

Mr. Winchester was there for a moment, and he gave Dean a bottle of whiskey. "Get them to sleep, son," he whispered to Dean, and Dean nodded.

Dean kept sitting shot after shot of whiskey next to Sam and Castiel, and Castiel wasn't sure where they were going because he didn't know if he was drinking them or not, but he was pretty sure that there weren't more than two glasses that Dean kept refilling.

Sam passed out rather quickly, and Raphael came to relieve Dean by pouring alcohol in the glass next to Castiel while Dean dragged his brother's unconscious body up the stairs.

Castiel was not getting drunk. Balthazar came out for a moment, picked up the Jack Daniel's bottle that they were trying to empty, and rolled his eyes. He went up the stairs to his room and came back with a clear bottle that was filled with clear liquid. "You can't get a Russian man drunk on whiskey," he informed the newly returned Dean.

The new alcohol had a stronger bite, but Castiel kept drinking whatever they put in front of him.

"This is Stolichnaya," Balthazar informed him. "You can put the glass away, and I want you to drink straight from this bottle, do you understand?"

Castiel only vaguely recognized that Balthazar was speaking to him in Russian, but he grabbed the bottle and drank out of it.

The police arrived, and after going into the house one of them left in a hurry to empty his stomach next to the magnolia tree in the front yard. Castiel thought that the wide waxy leaves were beautiful, but more than likely should have been shed during this time of the year.

He had to lean his head up against the column of the porch, and at that point Dean started carrying him up the stairs. He didn't even pretend to put Castiel in his room, and instead Castiel was surrounded by the dark browns and pale greens that decorated Dean's room. Dean pulled Castiel's clothing off of him, tucking him into his blankets with a determined look on his face.

"Stay with me," Castiel pled.

"I have to take care of dad, sha," Dean said, kissing Castiel's forehead. "If I don't, I don't know what I'll do. You just sleep, okay? I'll tell you everything in the morning, just sleep."

"Dean," Castiel pled, but his eyes were heavy and they were closing.

Dean softly sang him a lullaby, something that Castiel had never heard before. Before too long, darkness claimed him and Dean's voice sang on in his dreams.

Castiel woke up suddenly, the light coming in through the window. Dean was sleeping softly next to him, but that wasn't what had woken him up.

Mr. Winchester stood at the door to Dean's room, staring at the two boys. "Put your clothing on, and be quiet," he whispered. He didn't sound mad, just very, very tired.

Castiel obeyed quickly, and he followed Mr. Winchester out of Dean's room. He was surprised to see his suitcases next to the door.

"Balthazar is going to try and take you back to Russia with him, and the United States government doesn't want that. We're not going to be able to keep you, Castiel, in this house and you need to leave before that man wakes up to find you gone."

Castiel saw that there was another man in a suit next to the door. "Sir, can't I say good-bye to Dean?"

"There isn't enough time. Don't write to Dean, don't try to contact us at all. Those damn Soviets are going to be pissed that you've slipped through their fingers, and they're going to be searching for you. I'm sorry, I know that you and my son care about each other a great deal, but you're young. You both will move on, I'm sure."

Castiel whispered, panicked, "Can't I stay, please?"

Mr. Winchester looked years older than he had the day before. "I'm sorry, son."

Castiel wanted to protest, but there wasn't even enough time for that. He followed the man in the suit out of the Winchester house, the first place he had ever thought of as home, and got into the car with him.

They rode silently to the train station in New Orleans, where the man gave him a ticket. "You'll meet Senator Crowley in DC," the man in the suit told him. "He'll tell you where to go. And here kid, here's some money for some food," the man in the suit said, pulling out his own wallet from his back pocket.

"My mother," Castiel protested, "She's…"

"She died quickly," the man said, but Castiel could see the lie in his eyes. "She's going to be put in the Winchester's Family Plot, so she won't be alone, okay kid?"

Castiel knew that Dean would make sure that would happen, so he wasn't worried about that. He nodded his head numbly, and he got onto the train and one of the workers helped to put his suitcases in the rack above his seat, and he stared out the window as until they left the state of Louisiana.

He was never going to see his mother again. She was gone.

He was never going to see his Dean again. He was never going to kiss his lips, touch his hair, bury himself in his skin, take comfort in his arms. It was never going to happen. His life was over, had ended after that one perfect night, had crashed and burned. Castiel could begin to feel his entire body numbing over, and he realized he was hungover.

He stuck his hand in his pockets, finding the food that Miss Anna had made that he had hidden for Dean. He pulled out the bread, wrapped in a napkin, where he had put the cold fried chicken and red beans and rice in between the two slices. He stared in wonder when he saw that there were specks of water falling on the food, and he realized that he was crying.

The other people in his compartment stared at him, uncomfortable at the boy crying over a smashed sandwich. Some of them moved out, but Castiel didn't care. They had no idea what he was going through.

A/N: I promise that I will write a sequel, but the title was about to become inappropriate, and there's a lot of boring transition stuff that Castiel is going to go through. I'm really not a sadist!