Dean sighed as he approached the tree. It was there, as large as life just as he remembered it being when he'd last seen it when he was four. He'd gone back to Lawrence to look for the tree because he'd noticed that it hadn't been in the park when he'd passed by during his little trip to 1973, which was rather odd, because a Beech tree that size had to be at least a hundred years old. He would suspect that his trip to the past hadn't actually been a trip to the past, except for the fact that everything seemed to fit, and that the Miracle Beech was apparently called a Miracle Beech for a reason. Sprouting up overnight like the newspapers from 1978 had said it had done was as good a reason to call it a Miracle Tree as any.
The Archangel Michael slammed his head against the tree that had contained his Grace less than ten seconds after Dean touched it. Things had not quite gone to plan, but when dealing with the Winchesters, when did it ever? Dean wasn't supposed to get his Grace back and become him for another year. He'd even arranged for a hunt to drag Dean back to Lawrence where he'd get lost in fond memories of his favorite tree when he passed the park and decide to climb it for old times sake.
That plan just went down the crapper.
The tree had apparently decided to count thirty years from the point at which he'd been conceived, rather than from the point at which he'd been born as Dean. It had handed his grace back the first time Dean touched the tree after he'd reached thirty years of age as planned, but not when he had planned, screwing up everything he'd had planned.
After getting his fill of viewing timelines in which he'd failed, and in which he'd been stuck in time-out with Lucy, he'd come up with the stupid plan to actually become Dean Winchester. Due to the fact that he, the loyal and obedient son, was close enough in temperament to Dean, and had actually been Dean for a lifetime, there had been a great deal of bleed-over, and he found that he was now a Michael who thought and reacted to hypothetical situations the way Dean Winchester would have, complete with the whole "Protect Sammy at all costs" thing. Not good.
It was bad enough that he'd been forced to become Dean because the bastard wouldn't say yes, leading to a number of catastrophes from worlds where Lucifer had won to worlds where he'd somehow gotten dumped into the pit alongside Lucifer where he was unable to see what was going on and received no news of the outside world. But, after spending twenty-five years with Sam Winchester, he found that he adored the little mud monkey like he had Raphael and Gabriel and even Lucifer before he rebelled, and couldn't stand the thought of Lucifer riding around in his skin. Couple that with his new Protect Sammy! instincts, and the entire plan was shot to hell.
The whole plan of letting Lucifer free himself from the Pit so he could destroy him had sorta started when he'd gotten wind of Lucifer's plan to get himself free back in 1972 when someone had spotted Azazel talking to Lucy in a convent after he'd slaughtered a bunch of nuns. It was then that he, Raph - who was probably going to hit him the first time he called him the Teenage Mutant Ninja Angel - and the upper levels of management just below him came up with the plan to actually free Lucifer from the Pit and let the Apocalypse happen so Lucifer would finally be destroyed as he should have been in the first place.
Michael sighed as he headed back to the Impala wondering what he was going to do now that everything had gone to hell in a handbasket and wanting to fly rather than drive through several states. Sam would be suspicious if he returned without the car that his human father John Winchester had given him however. That, and humans didn't like being transported by angels for some strange reason, which meant there needed to be something to transport Sam in, and a car that the Winchesters owned free and clear was as good as any. That, and some lingering part of Dean was screaming that leaving the Impala behind was blasphemy.
The journey back to Sam was as long and tedious as he had anticipated. Half-way through, he'd stopped at a record store to pick up some new music after he grew tired of listening to the tapes he'd heard half a million times before as Dean. He'd been forced to purchase a CD player and some sort of adapter for older car radios as just about nobody sold cassette tapes anymore. As he drove, he spent several hours listening to some crap hymns and some particularly uninspired Gospel music before he popped in something that was supposed to aid meditation, as meditating was as good away as any to pass the time as any. The contents of that CD turned out to be some jackass banging on a gong at random intervals for over an hour.
By the time he'd reached the motel where he'd left Sammy, he was regretting buying that CD, regretting the part of his personality that detested waste and insisted he use any item he acquired, and twitching as he anticipated the next gong strike. There had been a reason he'd been all for the apocalypse, and this was it. Humans tended to twist Father's divine creation into something nerve-wracking and completely annoying. What the humans had turned music into was a prime example.
As he pulled into his parking space, there was a particularly loud bonggg. An instant later, waste be damned, he smote his new CD player.
"Dean, are you okay?" a rather concerned looking Sam who had probably spent the last couple of days wondering what the hell had happened to him asked, jumping up from his bed and racing towards his brother.
"Why do you smell like burnt plastic?" Sam asked when he was less than a foot away.
"No, I'm not okay. I don't want to talk about it right now. And, because I just killed my new CD player." Michael replied as he smelled the fresh demon blood running through Sammy's system, and felt a wave of concern for his newest little brother wash over him.
"Do you want some pie?" Sammy asked.
"What, are you crazy? Of course I want some pie!" Michael replied as he felt a sudden craving for a nice slice of pie, apple, cherry, peach, banana cream, or pecan, it didn't matter. "Where is it?"