A/N Let's face it, Kripke has made a hot mess of the last few seasons of Supernatural. So this is my version of what should have been. It starts after Castiel comes back, but before Dean gets booted to Purgatory.

My kingdom for a Snicker's. That was his first thought.

Where the hell am I? Was thought number two.

Holy shit, the bastard killed me. He actually killed me. That was the thought that brought the once dead archangel into a seated position. He had no idea how, or why, or what was going to happen next, but one thing was clear.

Gabriel was alive and kicking.

"For God's sake Dean! How many times to have to tell you not to download porn! My laptop is completely frozen! Can't you just buy a magazine and a bottle of lube like any other perpetual adolescent?"

Sam was about to pull bitchface #42, 'Why does he (usually Dean) insist on pushing every button I have?' but he didn't bother. Dean was watching . He was lost in a world of crappy acting, bad melodrama, and even worse cowboy boots. If Sam wanted his attention, he'd have to set himself on fire. Sam sighed, and started the process of undoing whatever Dean had done. It beat watching Dr. Sexy. It also beat worrying about Leviathans, Castiel, and all the other shit life was currently dumping on him that he had no prayer of fixing. Much to his relief, the computer wasn't as screwed up as it could have been, and after a half an hour or so, Sam was back on line, and hard at work. If you could call it that. He wasn't accomplishing anything, but it drove him crazy to just sit, and wonder what horrible thing was right around the corner.

A few hours passed, and Sam finally stood up and stretched his long frame out even longer. The chair he'd been sitting in has been murder on his back. Sam observed, and not for the first time, that the world wasn't built for a guy as big as he was. Dean was snoring on the couch, and Sam shook him awake.

"What, bitch?" Dean muttered, rubbing his eyes.

"I'm going to go grab some chow. You want anything, jerk?" Sam asked.

"Yeah..get the usual." Dean yawned and stretched.

"Jesus, Dean. With all the crap you eat I'm surprised you don't bleed animal fat." Sam said, scooping up the car keys.

"Bite me hippie." Dean suggested.

Sam rolled his eyes, and left. He and Dean were in a small town in Pennsylvania, and his food options were slim. He drove around until he found a small diner that had take out. He sat and waited for a waitress, and once he'd ordered, he looked out the large front window that overlooked the small town. People walked up and down the streets, going about their lives as they went in and out of different businesses. Sam had the melancholy thought that none of them really knew how close to the edge they were. How death stalked them at every turn. He wondered how different their behavior would be if they only knew what was really out there. Then he sighed, and gave himself a mental shake. Get real. They'd self-destruct, and they sure as hell wouldn't need a Whore to help them do it. Sam was sinking deeper into his depression when he suddenly noticed something. Or more specifically, someone. There was a man walking down the street, his head turned away from Sam. His hair was caramel colored, and he wore a pair of snug jeans and a brown leather jacket. There was something in his walk, a feel that was so familiar. As he passed in front of the diner, the man stopped, and turned. A pair of golden brown eyes met Sam's, and Sam's heart nearly stopped. His mouth dropped open, and closed, and his eyes filled. And for a moment, Sam was back in time.

Dean never knew. Sam never told him what else had happened at the Elysian Fields motel. After Dean had read Gabriel the riot act in the Impala, for a moment Sam had been alone in a private room, and Gabriel stood there, looking at him.

"What do you want this time?" Sam demanded.

Gabriel had sighed. It was a tired, sad sound. Sam had never heard that particular sound come out of him before.

"They're going to kill you Sam. Whatever deals you think they'll make, whatever promises they swear to, it's bullshit Sam. They are going to kill you." Gabriel told him.

"You think I don't know that? I'm not an idiot Gabriel. I think Dean and I have BOTH proven that to you." Sam retorted.

"Sam, I don't know if I can save you this time. She has your blood, and I-"

Sam cut the angel off.

"We didn't ask for your help, did we Gabriel? Because your brand of help sucks. If I wanna get tortured for months on end, I'll let the asshats out there do it. At least it'll make sense coming from them."

Gabriel sighed again, and stepped closer. Sam wanted to step back, he really did, but damn it….

"It wasn't about Dean. Or my family, Sam. At least not totally. It was you. It was always you. I knew you would destroy yourself if you kept going on the way you did, kiddo. And it was killing me. I started watching you and chucklehead after the college thing. And I saw it Sam, I saw how good you are, how you wanted to help people. But I saw how lost you were too. I saw you hurt, and reach for something you couldn't find. I was trying to save you. And in the end, I just wanted it over for all of us, so I pushed you to play your roles. I wanted to believe Heaven would protect your souls if you just did what they wanted. "

Sam spluttered, trying to ignore the tug on his heart some of Gabriel's word caused. He summoned his not so righteous indignation, and glared at the archangel.

"You thought HEAVEN would protect US? Are you fucking kidding me? Your daddy and brothers have toyed with my family from day one! And you helped them, didn't you? You saw my pain, and you made it worse. " Sam spat.

Gabriel flinched at that, and swallowed.

"I know. I was just so tired, and I did the entire thing wrong. And after a while, I realized that you would never-." Here Gabriel stopped, and ran his hand over his face. "It doesn't matter. I thought I saw something that wasn't there. It's too late now. I'm going to make things right, this is my last chance. But it won't be easy Sam, and I have a feeling it's gonna cost more than any of us are ready for."

Before Sam could reply, or ask Gabriel what he thought he had seen, he was back with Dean, and events were soon spiraling out of control. And soon Gabriel was dead, lying flat on his back, his wings blackened and charred to the floor. That night, as Sam lay in the back seat of the Impala where Dean had pulled off the side of the road, he remembered the first time he had seen Gabriel. He remembered their hands touching at the college, and the jolt that pierced not just his body, but his heart. He remembered how he'd wept in the shower when he thought the Trickster was dead. He remembered the agony he felt when he realized the Trickster was alive, and was responsible for Dean's repeated death. He had agonized over the why's of the Tricksters behavior. And he remembered the moment he learned that the Trickster was an angel. And not just an angel. He was the archangel Gabriel. As he stared at Gabriel through the ring of holy fire, he'd heard a voice whispering in his head, and he knew who it belonged to.

"I'm sorry Sam, I am so sorry. I was trying to do what I thought-"

Sam had raged in his mind.

"GET THE FUCK OUT OF MY HEAD, YOU LYING BASTARD."

And the presence had vanished. And God, how Sam had felt it. As they left the empty warehouse, Sam had looked back at the soaking wet angel. And he didn't know how, but he knew that the wetness on Gabriel's face wasn't just from the sprinkler system.

And to be strictly fair, the wetness on his face had nothing to do with the sprinklers. Nothing at all.

Sam thought he'd never see the archangel again. But he had. And the next time he'd seen Gabriel, it was the day he'd seen him die. The next morning, he'd woken to a blinding headache, and a piece of paper in his pocket. He had opened it the moment he was alone. It was brief and to the point.

-I tried, Sam. I swear I did.-

Sam didn't have to wonder who wrote it.

And after that day, Sam was left with regrets, more pain, and a shit load of what if's.

And now he stood staring at the angel he thought, no..he knew was dead, and his heart felt like someone was holding it in a vice grip. Sam raised a hand , and touched the glass that separated them. He had one clear thought, God help me, this time I will listen before I get angry with him. The man on the other side of the window raised his hand too, and rested it against the spot Sam's hand occupied. And Sam heard that voice in his head again, and something he thought had died in him with Gabriel suddenly flared back to life.

"Sam.."

"Gabriel…oh God, I..I –" Sam was cut off by Gabriel whipping his head to the side, and his eyes grew huge. He dropped his hand, and looked at Sam.

"Run Sammy! RUN."

Gabriel vanished then, and Sam nearly cried out. No, not again..

"Damn it, Sam, that could have been anyone, or anything, you KNOW that. You have no proof that it was Gabriel. And if it was, then what? The guy is a douche nozzle! And the fact that you saw Edgar 30 seconds later should be a hint Sam!"

Dean and Sam were currently speeding down the road, and Sam was ready to tear his hair out. The second he he'd gotten back to the motel, he'd spit out the word "Edgar" and 10 minutes later the brothers were in the Impala, getting the hell out of Dodge. Sam insisted that they had to try to contact Castiel, and get him to find Gabriel. He was terrified that Edgar had caught up with the angel. He comes back, and I watch him die again. God hates me. I can't do this again. I can't. When Gabriel had died the first time, all Sam could think about was the fact that he never let Gabriel know that he'd felt it too. That..tug that drew him to the archangel before Sam even knew who he was. All the hell that followed had allowed Sam to lose himself in anger, and pain, and bitterness. And then it was too late to try to see past it. Once Gabriel had died though, it was all Sam could do. He hit the mental rewind button over and over again, and would fantasize about what could have been. And now he was eye to eye with a second chance, and they were driving away as Dean insisted that Sam was losing his mind.

"IT WAS GABRIEL. " Sam insisted.

"How the hell can you possibly know that!" Dean asked.

The truth was, Dean had noticed the weird..thing between his little brother and that douche of an angel. Dean figured it could only end with Sam getting hurt, so he was relieved when Gabriel had manned up and faced down Lucifer. Now he had a bad feeling. Sam was frantic; near tears.

"I just know! I could feel him! CASTIEL! WE NEED YOUR HELP DAMN IT!" Sam yelled.

"Oh come on, Sam! Cas is no longer answering the phone, you know that! He doesn't like conflict anymore, remember?" Dean said.

Sam didn't answer. He just knotted his hands in his shaggy hair, and rested his elbows on his knees, head bowed.

The brothers drove all day and most of the night. When they finally stopped, they were both exhausted, and on edge. Neither of them brought up the name Gabriel, and Dean was wishing with every inch of his being that Sam would forget whatever the hell he thought he saw. They got a room, and soon Dean was snoring.

Sam lay in the bed across from his brother, grasping the blankets and trying not to panic. He felt helpless, and helpless was not a feeling Winchesters dealt well with. He finally closed his eyes, and whispered into the darkness.

"Gabriel, if it was really you, please, please, please, come back. I can't do this again..I can't live with it..the regret is killing me. I forgive you, alright? For all of it. You fucked up, I fucked up, but I just don't care anymore, because I'm dying an inch at a time, and I need..I need.." Sam stopped. He knew if he kept talking the tears would start and Dean might wake up and hear him.

"What do you need, Sammy?" a soft voice spoke next to him and Sam turned quickly, and found the archangel he'd been dying for sitting on the bed next to him. There was no mockery, or teasing in Gabriel's eyes. Just sorrow. Sorrow and endless regret.

Sam choked, and gasped for air like a drowning man. He managed to get one word out.

"You."

And then he was in Gabriel's arms. Sam wasn't sure how a man so much shorter than he was managed to envelop him so completely. He didn't care, either. He just clung, and tears came whether Sam wanted them to or not. He felt wetness on his own neck, and knew that the angel was weeping with him. Once they were both quiet, Gabriel lifted his head, and looked at Sam's face.

"I'm sorry Sam, I would do anything to-" Sam stopped him by burying his face back in Gabriel's neck.

"I don't care anymore. It's over. I don't want to rehash it; it doesn't do any good. I need it to be the past." Sam said, voice muffled by Gabriel's neck.

"Okay, kiddo. I..I just need to say it." Gabriel told him. "Sammy, please look at me."

Sam reluctantly raised his head, and met the angel's eyes.

"Sam, the first time I saw you, I thought you were my mate. Angel's only get one, but after I deserted the family, I..I just never thought that dear old Dad would allow me one. It seemed impossible. And I wanted it so bad, I thought maybe...I don't know, maybe God was going to dangle the one thing I wanted in front of me then snatch it back. I was afraid He'd use you to punish me. Then I saw how much pain you were in, and I didn't know what to do...but once you realized who I was, I knew…I knew then. I just didn't know how to tell you. And then it was too late. There was only one thing I could do for you then, so I did it. "

Sam drew a deep, shuddering breath, and lay his forehead on Gabriel's shoulder.

"I was just so furious. Then I realized that it was because I wanted so much more than you were giving me, but by then…you were dead, and it was too late." Sam admitted.

Gabriel stroked his fingers through Sam's shaggy hair. He was quiet for a moment.

"It won't be easy, Sam. Being an angel's mate, especially an archangel, it is absolutely forever, and I am a possessive, greedy-"

Sam stopped him again, this time with a finger to his lips. Gabriel raised an eyebrow.

"I don't give a damn. I want it. I can't live without it, not now that I know I can have you." Sam said.

"Ya know, that whole interrupting me thing…that's gonna get old fast." Gabriel was grinning slightly, and Sam opened his mouth to laugh, but a sob escaped instead. Gabriel pulled him close again, and gripped him tightly till it passed, then smoothed his hair out of his face. "Sammy…I'm here. I'm not leaving this time." Sam burrowed into Gabriel's chest, getting as close as he could, not answering.

Gabriel let him rest in his arms for a few minutes, then tilted Sam's face up. He leaned down then, and touched their mouths together. Sam sighed into the kiss. It was like coming home, and he never wanted it to end. And when Gabriel traced his lips with his tongue, Sam opened his mouth willingly, and let the archangel in without a second thought. The kiss quickly became heated, and their tongues tangled, and explored, till Sam whimpered. Gabriel pulled back with a groan then, panting softly.

"Sam, kiddo, we gotta slow down. Every instinct in me wants to tear your clothes off, bury myself inside you, and mark you so hard a blind man could see it." Gabriel whispered.

Sam moaned at the thought. He'd never had sex with a man, but the idea didn't bother him. He wasn't sure if it was because the idea of gay never bothered him, or because the man in question was Gabriel. He did know that he had fantasized about this moment for what felt like forever.

"So do it." Sam rasped out.

Gabriel shuddered, and leaned down, tracing kisses down Sam's jaw. He whispered again.

"Uh kiddo, your big brother is in the next bed, and this will get loud, I promise. You really wanna do this here?" he asked.

"You're an archangel. Can't you keep him asleep?" Sam replied.

"I can…but I don't want to rush you, Sammy. Are you sure about this? If I take you, I will mark you. I won't be able to stop myself. And once that's done, it's forever." Gabriel warned.

"Then do it. " Sam said.

Gabriel watched him for a minute, then attacked his mouth with a moan. Sam realized after a moment that both of their clothes were gone, and the bed they were laying on was softer, more comfortable. And the sheets were silky and luxurious. He lifted his hands, and traced them down Gabriel's chest. It was smooth, and muscular, and Gabriel smelled like chocolate, and something undefinable that made Sam ache. When Sam got to the scar that Lucifer had left on him, it hit him again that Gabriel had been dead, and that eventually, they'd need to have a conversation about that. But the moment in front of them was too important, too overwhelming to stop for a chat. Gabriel let Sam explore for a few minutes, contenting himself to place tiny kisses on Sam's cheeks, neck, and shoulders. Then Sam whimpered when Gabriel made a lap across one nipple, and play time was over. Gabriel began traveling down Sam's body, trailing his tongue over every spot that made Sam moan. He nibbled and teased each nipple till they were hard, and sensitive, and laid a trail of kisses down Sam's chest till he reached the hunter's hips. Gabriel sucked a mark onto each hip bone, and Sam shifted, and groaned softly as the archangel worked. Sam's cock lay heavy and aching on his belly, and when Gabriel finally touched it, just a gentle swipe of his tongue over the leaking slit, Sam's back arched, and he moaned loudly.

"Please, Gabriel please…I need you. It's not enough…I need all of it.." Sam pled.

Gabriel drew a calming breath, and gently nudged Sam's knees apart. He circled Sam's entrance, and Sam whimpered as heat and wetness seemed to fill him. Gabriel leaned over then, and kissed him softly.

"It won't hurt, Sammy, I promise." He whispered.

"Hurry, please…" Sam moaned.

Gabriel pushed gently into Sam's body then. Sam knew enough about anal to know it should hurt, especially without any preparation, but Gabriel was as good as his word. There was no pain; just heat, and fullness, and oh God...friction against something inside him that made him frantic.

"Move…Gabriel, move." Sam demanded.

Gabriel groaned, and lifted Sam's back off the bed effortlessly, so he was straddling the angels lap, and he arranged them so Sam was on his knees.

"There, Sammy…do what feels good. I'm right here.." Gabriel whispered.

Sam lifted himself then, and Gabriel clutched his hips, helping him rise. Then he sank back down, and cried out through gritted teeth.

"Nnggnnnn…Gabe! S'good! Too good…ohGodohGodohGod…"Sam cried out as his body seized up, and pleasure tore through him. He was still hard when it ended though, and he whimpered, dazed and shaking.

"Sammy…oh fuck..you're so tight, and hot…do it again, baby…"Gabriel lifted Sam's hips this time, and guided him back down. "Hit that spot again, Sammy. Let me feel it…wanna feel it when you come around me like that…"

Sam wailed as he sank back down, and the intense feeling washed over him again. Gabriel growled then, and started lifting his hips as he helped Sam ride him. The delicious friction built, and Sam felt a deeper sensation building in him. Gabriel was growling in Enochian against Sam's skin, and Sam clutched his shoulders.

"Gonna come! Nownownow…" Sam was tossing, writhing in the angels lap, desperate.

Gabriel suddenly reached around Sam, and placed a hand on the small of his back. A feeling of warmth washed over the hunter, and it send him over the edge. He exploded, howling Gabriel's name as he coated both of their chests and bellies with his release. As he squeezed the angels deeply buried arousal, Gabriel threw his head back, and blinding, beautiful light filled the room, and Sam's body. The light pushed the pleasure in Sam's body to a point that robbed him of speech, thought, and air. Gabriel's golden wings manifested as he shouted out his orgasm in his true voice, and after an eon of heavenly bliss, Sam slumped in Gabriel's arms, whimpering softly, and trembling. Gabriel held him tightly, murmuring to him softly.

"Sammy…love you so much.."

"Love you too. Always love you..don't let go." Sam whispered.

"Never, Sammy."

Gabriel laid Sam gently back and cleaned them both with a snap. He held Sam close then, and Sam sighed deeply. After a few minutes, he spoke.

"Gabriel, how did you come back?"

"God did it. I woke up in what was Bobby Singer's junk yard. All I know is God sent me back. I started looking for you as soon as I got back, but someone must have remarked your ribs, because I could feel you, but I couldn't find you. I thought I'd go crazy." Gabriel said softly. "What the hell happened to Singer's place anyhow?"

Sam sighed, and spent the next few hours filling Gabriel in on all he'd missed. The archangel nearly vomited when he found out Sam spent a year in the cage. And his eyes darkened when Sam explained what happened with Castiel.

"I knew the Leviathans had gotten out, I just didn't know which idiot had set them free. Son of a bitch." Gabriel paused then, as Sam yawned. "You're exhausted, Sammy. Go to sleep. I'll be right here holding you, I promise."

"MM'k. " Sam closed his eyes, then opened them again."Wait..I thought you were going to mark me? Did you?"

Gabriel grinned, and led Sam's hand to the small of his back. There Sam could feel the edges of a handprint.

"I'll show what it looks like tomorrow. It's like Dean's only yours has my sigil in it." Gabriel whispered.

"You gave me a tramp stamp?" Sam asked. He was trying , and failing to be annoyed by that fact.

"Sure did. And it looks sexy on you kiddo." Gabriel whispered.

Sam couldn't help laughing then, and he snuggled back down into Gabriel's body. Soon Gabriel's wings came up and encircled them, and Sam opened his eyes again.

"How come I can see your wings? And why didn't your grace blind me? And was that your true voice?"

Gabriel chuckled, and rolled his eyes.

"Jeez Sammy, didn't I wear you out? Yes, that was my true voice, and my grace. But those won't damage you anymore because you're my mate. And you can see my wings for the same reason. Now go to sleep."

"Oh.." Sam sighed again, eyes drifting shut. "K…"

Gabriel stroked the hunter's hair till he slept peacefully. Then he lay holding his human as he planned his actions now that he was back. And the first thing on his list would be taken care of tomorrow, first thing. Little brother, you and I are going to have a long talk. You have some explaining to do Castiel.

Dean woke up the next morning after a night of bizarre dreams he couldn't remember. But he felt like he's slept a lot longer than usual, and as he yawned and stretched, he turned his head to look over at Sam. When he did, his mouth dropped open, and for a few minutes, all he could was stare.

Instead of the crappy little motel bed they'd both laid down on last night, Sam was on a king size, with what looked like blue silk sheets. There was also a massive pile of pillows, and reclining on said pillows was…Gabriel. And the topping on the brain bleach sundae was his brother, who was lying on top of the archangel, fast asleep. The sheets mercifully covered his ass, but his back was bare way too far down for Dean's taste, and he didn't miss the handprint on Sam's lower back that had some sort of sigil in black on the palm. Before Dean could speak, Gabriel did.

"Miss me, Dean-o?"

Dean jumped out of bed then, and Gabriel raised an eyebrow at him, and sighed. Could have seen this coming from a mile away, I guess.

"Get your hands off my brother, you feathery dick! Holy oil, holy oil…" Dean was searching his pants pocket for his car keys, when Sam woke up.

"He's taking it well." Gabriel told Sam calmly.

"I see that. What exactly is he doing?" Sam asked, sitting up and stretching.

"Searching for his car keys so he can get the holy oil." Gabriel replied. "C'mere…" he pulled the hunter back into his arms, and Sam settled into them with a sigh.

"GOD DAMN IT! GET YOUR HANDS OFF HIM AND WHERE THE FUCK ARE MY KEYS?" Dean shouted.

"Oh, I have your keys, Dean-o. Didn't want you do anything hasty before you actually talked to your brother." Gabriel replied.

"FINE. I'LL KILL YOU WITH MY BARE HANDS." Dean launched himself at the angel on the bed, and Sam shook his head, and lifted the sheet so Dean could see that he was naked underneath.

That stopped Dean cold, and he covered his eyes with his hands and moaned in pain.

"Quick thinking, Sammykins." Gabriel complimented.

"I know Dean." Sam replied.

"Why don't I go rustle up some breakfast while you calm Dean down." Gabriel suggested.

"Probably a good idea." Sam agreed. He leaned up and pressed a soft kiss to Gabriel's lips. The archangel grinned down at him.

"You're my new addiction, kiddo. You taste even better than sugar."

Sam laughed while Dean gagged, and Gabriel mercifully snapped some clothes on before he left the bed. He dropped one more kiss on Sam's nose, then headed to the door.

"I'll be back in bit, Sammy." He promised.

Sam smiled at him, and lay back with a contented moan as the door shut behind his angel.

As soon as Gabriel was gone, Dean was throwing clothes at Sam.

"Get dressed. We're getting out of here before that feathered asshat, or whatever he is comes back." Dean ordered.

Sam gave a long suffering sigh, and shook his head.

"Dean, I'm only going to say this once. That is Gabriel; God brought him back. And I am not going anywhere without him. I love him, and he's my mate. And frankly, with the leviathans on the loose, we can't afford to refuse help from anyone." Sam said.

"So you let him fuck you to get him to stay? Jesus, Sammy! Of all the-"

Sam sat up and glared at Dean.

"Let's get a few things straight here, Dean. I called for him. I asked him to come to me because once I knew he was back I couldn't stand the thought of losing him again. And I wanted him last night. I begged for it. And he made it clear what would happen if he took me, and that only made me want him more. He did not fuck me. He made love to me, and if that makes me a girl, fine. I love him, Dean, and we are a package deal. You're gonna have to adjust." Sam told him firmly.

"How do you know it's even him Sam? Did you do any tests on him?" Dean demanded.

Sam looked his older brother in the eye.

"I know because the minute I saw him I came back to life. Something huge in me died with him, but the minute I saw him…felt him…I started breathing again. "

Dean stopped then. He had to, because he knew exactly what his brother meant. That same part of him had died when Castiel abandoned them. But when Dean's angel came back, the pain hadn't healed. It just got deeper. Sam saw the look on his older brother's face, and reached out and took his hand.

"I know, Dean. I'm sorry." He said quietly.

Dean sighed then, looking old for a minute, and tired.

"Sometimes I wish…"Dean trailed off. There was no point going down that road, so he didn't bother.

"I know." Sam hugged Dean for a few seconds, till Dean remembered his objections to chic- flick moments, and pulled away.

"You're definitely the girl in the relationship." Dean told him, huffing as he stood up. "And if you two ever have sex with me in the room again, I will get the holy oil, so help me."

Sam chuckled as Dean grabbed a towel and headed into the shower. Once he was alone, he got out of bed, and went to the mirror that hung above the beaten up dresser. He turned his back, and looked over his shoulder. Sure enough, there was a distinct handprint. It was outlined in a thin black line, and a sigil filled the palm print, also in black. Sam looked at it as best as he could with his awkward positioning, and grinned a little. Leave it to Gabriel to make it a tramp stamp. It hit Sam then that his archangel's jovial attitude was the perfect foil to his own serious nature. They just…fit. Their minds, their personalities, their bodies. He shivered a little when his mind replayed the previous night, and as he reminisced, the front door opened, and Gabriel stepped in, loaded down with bags. The archangel stopped when he saw Sam standing in front of the mirror naked, and gave a low whistle. Sam blushed pink, and started to head to his pants.

"Oh no…it would be a crying shame to cover that up, Sammy. "

Gabriel sat the bags down on the table, and moved quickly to Sam. Sam chuckled as the archangel wrapped his arms around his neck, and hopped up, wrapping his legs around Sam's waist.

"Dean's in the shower. If he comes out and catches us doing what you want to do, he's gonna have a conniption. " Sam warned as he wrapped his arms around the angel.

"We gotta get Dean a date." Gabriel sighed, dropping back down to his feet. "And you gotta put some pants on, or I'll forget all about Dean's sensitive nature."

"I was trying to, remember?" Sam pointed out, picking up his boxers and sliding them past his hips. "And I doubt getting Dean a date would do any good. Ever since-." Sam stopped, not trusting himself to tell his new mate precisely how he felt about Castiel's treatment of Dean. Sam was grateful to Cas for helping him when he lost his marbles. He really was. But his marbles would have still been in their bag if Cas hadn't knocked them out in the first place.

Gabriel watched him for a moment, then slid his arms back around Sam.

"I know kiddo. Castiel is on my list of things to do. He and I are going to have a long talk." He promised Sam.

Sam sighed, and lowered his head so their lips met. The kiss was long, and soft, and perfect. It ended when a loud voice spoke.

"Take it somewhere else, you two! " Dean stomped over to the bags of food, and Gabriel grinned at Sam as he slowly released him.

The three of them sat down to breakfast, and Dean's mood saw a marked improvement when he found pancakes, whip cream and stacks of bacon and sausage. Sam shook his head as he watched Dean and Gabriel wolf down what he considered a nauseating concoction, and went back to his oatmeal and fruit salad.

"You two have abysmal eating habits." Sam stated.

"Bite me, Samantha." Dean replied.

"Hey, he is all man, I can verify that." Gabriel said, grinning at Sam.

"Shut. Up." Dean crammed more bacon into his mouth, and glared at the archangel.

Gabriel cackled, and Sam snickered as Dean glowered at them. Once the food was gone, Gabriel got a serious look on his face, and stood up.

"Alright. Time for a little business." Gabriel said.

The archangel closed his eyes, and after a moment, Castiel appeared, looking startled. He took an immediate step back to put some distance between himself and Gabriel, then looked startled.

"What did you do to me Gabriel? Castiel asked.

"I'm an archangel, little bro. You aren't going anywhere until we have a talk." Gabriel stepped closer to Castiel, and his eye's narrowed. The scheming Trickster was nowhere to be found on Gabriel's face as he looked Castiel in the eye. "You little idiot. Father locked the leviathans up for a reason, Castiel! Because they are eating machines that have no remorse or compunction!" Castiel opened his mouth to speak, and Gabriel snapped his fingers. Tape appeared over Cas's mouth, and Gabriel glared at him." Don't waste your time. I know you didn't mean to let them out. But what you meant to do doesn't matter, because the consequences of what you did do are already staring us in the face! You made a deal with Crowley, you lied to people who loved you, and you thought that would turn out well? How could anything good ever come from that, Castiel? I am well aware of how many times I've fucked up. I carry my regret everywhere I go. But you know the difference between you and me? I made good, Castiel. I did what I could to make my mistakes right. No one gets a free ride, Castiel. You don't get to hide in your mind, and ignore all you did. Cleaning out Sam's mind was only setting right one mistake." Gabriel stepped into Castiel's personal space now, and the younger angel's eyes went huge, and he shook his head 'no'. "Vacation time is over Castiel. It's time to do what's right."

Gabriel touched his first two fingers to Castiel's forehead, and light washed over him. Castiel fell to his knees, shaking from head to toe. When it died down, the tape was gone, and Castiel was dressed as a holy tax accountant again. And the happy, absent expression was gone. Castiel's eyes were haunted, and sad. He looked up at Gabriel.

"God brought you back." He stated.

"Yeah, he did. And we have a mess to clean up, little brother." Gabriel reached down, and hauled Castiel to his feet.

"Why are you helping me, Gabriel? This is not your problem." Castiel said, looking down at his clothing, and wincing slightly.

"I'm not doing it for you, Castiel. I'm doing it for Sam." Gabriel replied.

Castiel looked over at the younger hunter, and his eyes widened.

"You've claimed him…he is your mate, Gabriel?" Castiel looked back at the archangel, shock on his face.

"That's right. Some of us don't keep our heads in our asses." Gabriel said. Sam came over now, and slid an arm around Gabriel.

"Castiel, we can't do this on our own. The Leviathans are everywhere, and Dean and I need all the help we can get." Sam told him.

"Is that why you mated with Gabriel, to gain his assistance?" Castiel asked in blank voice.

The air in the room started to crackle as Gabriel's face darkened. Sam put a restraining hand on the archangel's arm, and stepped closer to Castiel.

"No. I mated with Gabriel because I love him. Because I am smart enough to see a miracle when it's standing in front of me, even if it does take me awhile. Don't dump your blindness on me Castiel. If you don't have what you want, it's because you never had the balls to reach out and try to take it." Sam said quietly.

Castiel didn't respond to that, but everyone heard the odd, somewhat pained noise that came out of Dean. Gabriel looked at the older Winchester with a surprising amount of compassion in his eyes, and snapped a flask into existence. He handed it to Dean, who nodded his thanks.

"Alright, as much fun as this is, we need to be moving on. Leviathans can sense angelic power, and I've used a lot around here. I have a safe house I used to use when I was Loki. We can go there, and start to make some plans." Gabriel said. "And don't even think of trying to ditch, Castiel, or so help me, I will leash you, got it?"

Castiel looked at Gabriel, and sighed deeply.

"I am not leaving, Brother. You were correct. It's time to clean up my mess."

The next few hours passed slowly for the angels as they sat in the Impala, riding toward what they all hoped was safety. Gabriel and Sam were in the back, and Dean drove, Castiel next to him. Dean had AC/DC blasting at top volume, hoping to avoid any uncomfortable conversation. He glanced back at Sam and Gabriel from time to time, and they were sitting close, hand in hand. Neither spoke, but they would look at each other sometimes, and there was something so palpable between them Dean was surprised he couldn't see it physically. He remembered suddenly the moment he, Sam, and Bobby had briefly bound Death. The golden rope that wrapped around his wrists sprung to mind, and Dean half expected to see something similar entwining Sam and Gabriel now. He pushed down the nagging envy he felt, and told himself he was happy that Sam finally got something good in his life, even if it was an irritating, pain in his ass archangel. He suddenly felt eyes on him, and Dean glanced over. Castiel was staring in the unsettling way he used to have, and Dean gritted his teeth a little.

"Whattdya want, Cas?" Dean growled.

"You're unhappy." Castiel told him.

"Gee Cas, ya think? I mean hey, what the hell do I have to be unhappy about? Well let's see…Leviathans are everywhere, and the whole fucking world going right back down the toilet! And let's see, Bobby's dead, and my kid brother manages to mate with his angel when I can't even get -" Dean suddenly stopped and scowled at the window as he drove. The silence in the Impala was suddenly deafening, and Castiel dropped his eyes to his lap.

Gabriel squeezed Sam's hand when he saw the look of sadness on his face, and Sam glanced over, trying to smile. Gabriel reached up, and stroked Sam's cheek. Sam sighed, and Gabriel patted his legs. Sam did smile then, and stretched out across the back seat, resting his head in the archangel's lap. Gabriel carded his fingers through Sam's hair as they drove, and Sam's eyes drifted shut.

A few more hours passed, and Sam felt a gentle hand shaking him.

"Time to wake up, kiddo. We're there." Gabriel said softly.

Sam opened his eyes, and found golden brown ones gazing down at him. He yawned, and Gabriel leaned down, and pressed their mouths together. They kissed slowly, and when it ended, Gabriel whispered,

"Still sweet…"

Sam smiled, and whispered back,

"Take me to bed. I'm not the least bit tired anymore."

Gabriel chuckled then, and helped Sam sit up. They climbed out of the car, and Sam went to stand next to Dean, stretching as he walked. They were standing in front of a large, rambling old house, and it was surrounded by willow trees, and bushes. Night was falling, and the place looked as creepy as hell in the damp darkness.

"Where are we?" Sam asked.

"Louisiana. Out in the damned bayou. Your butt pirate says they can't find us here." Dean replied.

Gabriel came over, Castiel on his heels. He wrapped his arms around Sam from behind, and looked at Dean.

"And they can't bucko. There is some heavy duty, God style mojo on this place. It's currently about the only safe place on earth." Gabriel told him. "Now, who's hungry? Sammykins? Dean-o? "

"Eh. I could eat. "Dean shrugged.

"Shouldn't we be planning?" Castiel demanded.

"Not tonight, little bro. Dean and Sam are both tired, and it isn't like we're gonna go gank Dick Roman at dawn. Don't get your panties in a twist." Gabriel said.

Castiel fell silent at Gabriel's words, and followed the other men into the old house. When they got inside, Gabriel snapped his fingers, and the lights flared to life. Dean and Sam glanced at each other, then both looked at Gabriel when they saw the interior.

"What? It was the 50's when I redecorated last. Red and chrome were popular. Gimme a break. Now come on, the kitchens over here." The archangel headed down a hall, and Dean shook his head as Sam suggested redecorating. They followed Gabriel though, and soon the four of them were sitting on stools at a high table, eating pizza.

Dean looked down at the stool he was perched on, then back at Gabriel.

"Is this how you compensate for the whole short thing?" he asked.

Gabriel grinned.

"Nah, I compensate for that in the bedroom." He told Dean.

"And how." Sam commented calmly.

Dean gagged, and glared at them. Castiel looked a little embarrassed, but didn't comment.

When the food was gone, Gabriel stood up and made show of stretching and yawning.

"Weeellll…I'm tuckered out. Bedtime! Gonna join me Sammy?" he asked.

"Real subtle, Gabe." Dean said drily.

"Exhausted." Gabriel repeated.

Sam stood up and grinned.

"I need a shower before bed." He told Gabriel.

Dean moaned, and Gabriel hurried the younger hunter up the stairs. One Dean and Castiel were alone, the angel looked at the hunter.

"Sam seems..happy." he said quietly.

"Yeah well, Sammy deserved it. He's lost enough. " Dean said opening a beer.

"Dean, you deserve to be happy too, I-"

"Save it Cas. I gave up on happy a long time ago. That ship has sailed." Dean stood up and left the kitchen then, leaving the angel slumped over the kitchen table, grief in his eyes.

Upstairs, Sam leaned against the wall of the shower. Gabriel stood behind him, and gently rubbed his back.

"I can try to talk to Castiel, Sam, but I don't how much good it'll do. In the end, it's up to them, kiddo."

"I know. I just wish there was some way to make this easier." Sam sighed.

Gabriel turned Sam then, and drew his face down for a kiss.

"Maybe there is Sam. Maybe they just need to see what could be. Maybe seeing what we have will give them the kick in the ass they need to reach out and take it for themselves." He said.

"I hope so. I really do." Sam answered, sliding his arms around the archangel, and pulling him closer.

"There's not a damned thing we can do about it tonight, Sam. Tonight we're all alone, and technically, we're on our honeymoon." Gabriel grinned up at Sam as he spoke.

Sam grinned back.

"I take it you have plans?" he asked.

Gabriel slowly sank to his knees, and Sam looked down and moaned at the sight of his mate hovering close to his erection.

"Oh, I have plans, Sammy." Gabriel promised. He leaned forward then, and closed his mouth around Sam's cock. The hunter moaned, and scrambled to clutch the walls of the shower to keep himself upright.

"Fuck! Gabriel..a…little…warning…oh fuck…that's…that's really…good…" the archangel chuckled around Sam's dick, making him groan as the vibrations moved up his shaft. Gabriel kept sucking, and stroking, using his tongue to trace the underside of the head, and press into Sam's leaking tip. Sam whimpered, and clutched his partner's shoulders as he panted, and moaned. Soon Sam had to thrust, and when he tried, Gabriel placed a hand on his hip, easily stopping the movement.

"Gabriel…fuck…stop teasing!" Sam groaned.

Gabriel slid his mouth off Sam with a pop, and the taller man whimpered in protest. Gabriel stood up and turned off the shower.

"I was right, you're so much better than sugar, Sammy." Gabriel whispered in the hunter's ear as he pulled him out of the shower. He grabbed a towel then, and dried them both off painfully slowly, while Sam started exploring Gabriel's body, using his fingers, and following with his tongue on any spot he could reach. Gabriel moaned his approval, and led Sam to the large, four poster bed that dominated the bed room he'd picked for them. Sam was passingly relieved to find the room looked like what a person would expect in an old Victorian home, and not something Ricky and Lucy would inhabit. Gabriel chuckled, seeming to know what Sam was thinking, then slid his arms under the hunter's knees, tipping him back onto the bed. Sam scooted back, and Gabriel crawled over his prone body, a predatory gleam in his eye. Sam's breath caught when he saw it, and he pulled the archangel down for a hard, messy, kiss.

"I'm getting fucked this time, aren't I?" Sam whispered.

"Is that what you want, Sammy? For me to fuck you hard?" Gabriel asked, reaching down between them to stroke Sam's hard cock as he spoke.

"Yes, please…" Sam breathed. Gabriel circled Sam's entrance as he panted out his plea, and once again wetness flooded the trembling hole, making Sam groan.

"Well, since you asked so nicely.." Gabriel wrapped Sam's legs around his waist and thrust into him in one quick movement. Sam's head fell back, and he cried out as Gabriel slammed into his prostate on the first try. He decided that it must be an advantage of angel sex; auto lube, and the perfect angle every time.

Gabriel moved deeply, burying himself to the root each time as Sam writhed beneath him, and clutched his ass, trying to pull him somehow deeper.

"Sammy…fuck…how can...anything feel…this…good?" Gabriel groaned. Sweat was blossoming over the archangel's body as he moved in and out of his hunter, and the small part of him that was coherent observed that he'd had sex with angels, gods, and more humans than he could conveniently count; but none of them, not one came close to making him feel as good as Sam did.

Sam was already a whimpering, pleading mess, and words tumbled out of his mouth; filthy, pleading, nonsense that just drove Gabriel to move harder, and faster. Every time Gabriel thrust into him, Sam would tighten his legs around the archangel's waist and cry out his pleasure. And each time Sam got close to completion, Gabriel would still his hips, and lean down to sprinkle kisses over his face while Sam babbled and demanded more. Finally the angel couldn't stand to torment either of them any longer, and reached between them, wrapping his hand around Sam's cock, which was leaking a steady dribble of fluid now. Gabriel gave a few smooth, hard, tugs, and Sam was howling out his orgasm, shooting ropes of come over his chest. His hot, silky channel squeezed so hard, and Gabriel joined his cry then, and once again his wings burst out as his seed filled the hunter. Light poured over them both, and when it finally ended, Sam pulled the angel down onto him so he could clutch him close.

Castile paused in his pacing as he passed his brothers door. Light was pouring out of the crack underneath, and he could hear Gabriel and Sam crying out. His face flushed in a mix of embarrassment and longing. He hurried away from the door, not wanting the lovers to realize he'd heard them. When he got to the base of the stairs, he saw Dean slouched on the couch, the flask Gabriel had given him in his hand.

"I could have told you that upstairs near those two was the last place you wanted to be. " Dean said, not bothering to look up from the flickering television.

"Yes, I realized that slightly too late. " Castiel sighed. "Dean, may I speak to you?"

"We're talking right now, aren't we?" Dean said.

Castiel walked over to the television, and turned it off.

"I was hoping we could speak seriously, and without distractions." The angel said.

Dean stood up, and stepped close to Castiel now. A dim part of him understood that this "talk" would wind up being just one more torture Dean didn't need. But he felt helpless to stop the words from coming.

"About what, Cas? Huh? I mean, where do we start? The part where you lied to me? Where you tore down Sam's wall? Where you made a deal with fucking CROWLEY? Or do we go back a little further? Back to where you never say one damn word to me about what this…this…"Dean waved his hand back and forth between them, encompassing them both." This is! Or should we talk about how you watched me self -destruct, and never said one fucking word? You've seen me drink and whore my way cross country trying to find some kind of fucking peace, and you just watched!" Dean stepped into Castiel's personal space now, green eyes burning with anger, and agony. "You could have come to me at any time and told me what we could have had, and instead you let me keep going and you never-" Dean stopped, not trusting his voice to continue.

There was a time when Dean would have railed against the idea that he needed any kind of comfort or relationship beyond that which his brother could provide. But the memory of standing out in Bobby's scrap yard late one night, while his brother screamed in agony in the panic room, after being told by a horseman he was dead inside, tears pouring down his face as he begged God for help…that memory convinced Dean that there was something missing. He tried to find it with Lisa and Ben, but it hadn't worked. And the idea that Castiel could have stepped out of the basement that night, and given him what Gabriel had given Sam…it moved Dean to a place beyond anger. It moved him to despair. Why? Why didn't he come to me? What is wrong with me that we could have that, but he turns away from me every time? Dean had stopped worrying about the gay thing the first time he saw Gabriel reach out, and run his finger along Sam's jawline, with a look of infinite tenderness, and utter devotion on his face. It hit him in that moment that it had nothing to do with sexual orientation. It was about the intangible bond they were both created to share with each other. Despite playing blind to what was happening between him and Castiel for a long time, some part of Dean had always known, and always desired. But when Cas didn't seem to want it, or need it, Dean buried the ache so deep he hoped it would never come up. He tried to lose it under a mountain of women and booze, but in the end, it hadn't worked. But Dean also knew if Castiel had reached out to him, just once he would have given in. Dean choked down the tears he absolutely refused to shed, and looked Castiel directly in the eye.

"Ya know what gets me Cas? Before Gabriel came back, all I knew was that there was something between us that I couldn't put my damned finger on. I knew I missed when you were gone, that I worried about you, and thought about you, and for some fucking reason dreamed about you, but I never knew exactly why. Then Gabe shows up, takes Sammy to bed and mates with him, and then, then I got it. Then I knew what we were supposed to be to each other. And it hit me, Cas…you knew all along. From the minute you dragged me outta hell and just left me in another one, you knew what we could have, and you never...you just…"Dean stopped again, shaking his head. Another cry of passion and completion floated down the stairs at that moment, and both the angel and the hunter flinched. "You knew we could have that," Dean said, pointing at the stairs, "and you still turned your back on me. You never even told me why I wasn't good enough. I mean hey, I get it. I'm a borderline alcoholic who spent time in Hell learning the fine art of torture. I get why you didn't want me, but why the fuck did you tell me I deserved to be saved when you never once believed it?"

Castiel stared at Dean for a moment, trying to find words after the hunter had gutted himself and shown the angel all the agony he was dragging around. But before he could speak, Dean just shook his head again.

"Forget it, Castiel. What the hell is there to say? If you wanted me you'd have done something before now. " Dean turned, and trudged towards the stairs. He walked like an old man, and when he got to the base, he paused for a moment, and turned a little. "Ya know, the stupid thing is, I never even wanted the whole apple pie life. I just wanted someone who could understand the life I already had and share it with me."

Castiel watched as Dean drug himself up the stairs, still trying to find something, anything to say to fix what he realized now, was the biggest and most hideous mess he'd left behind. But he came up blank, and once Dean was out of sight, the angel sank down onto the couch, and buried his face in his hands, feeling a despair wash over him that was too powerful for tears.

The next morning, Gabriel and Sam were in the kitchen together fixing breakfast. Both of them were shirtless, and wore sleep pants. Sam was stirring waffle batter when Gabriel slid his arms around the hunter from behind, and kissed his shoulder.

"You know what I love the most about you, kiddo?" Gabriel asked.

"Hmmm… I'm pretty sure you won't say my intellect, my honorable nature, or my work ethic, so I'll pick…penis size?" Sam snickered.

Gabriel turned Sam, a smirk on his face.

"Smart ass. I was going to say your willingness to indulge my sweet tooth. But your unnaturally large dick does come in a very close second." Gabriel said, sticking his tongue out.

"Is that an oral sex joke?" Sam asked, grinning.

Gabriel burst into a loud laugh then, and pulled Sam to him. They kissed slowly, unaware of anyone but each other.

Dean came into the kitchen to find the archangel with his tongue down Sammy's throat again. He was going to make a snarky remark when the kiss ended, and they rested their foreheads together, looking into each other's eyes. He heard Gabriel speak softly then.

"I love you so much, Sammy."

Sam touched the archangels cheek, and whispered back,

"Gabriel, I love you too."

Dean froze then, and clutched the back of the stool he was preparing to sit in. He was starting to wonder if he'd finally found his breaking point. Dean had buried his mother and his father. He'd done time in Hell. He'd buried the man who was a second father to him. He had watched as his baby brother jumped into a cage to ride out eternity with Lucifer riding his ass. Then he'd gotten him back to find out it wasn't really him at all. And when he really did get Sam returned to him, he was broken again within the year by the one being Dean had trusted, supported, and defended the most. And he got back on his feet every fucking time. Every time. He didn't stop when it hurt so bad he thought he'd lose his mind, he didn't stop when he wanted to lay the fuck down and die. He kept pushing, kept fighting, and for the last few days, as he watched his little brother with Gabriel, he'd gotten some insight into why he never quit. It was because some part of him had been waiting for that. For the relationship with the one who would make all this shit not only bearable, but make him want to fight again, and save the world one more time. He'd been waiting for the one who'd take all the broken, raw pieces that were Dean Winchester, and put them back together again. But Gabriel and Sammy had hammered the final nail in with their mating. Dean finally got it. That someone had showed up years ago, taken a look at Dean, and decided that he didn't like the look of the goods that were being offered. Dean understood. The pieces weren't getting fixed. This particular puzzle was staying broken, because the one person could make the pieces fit didn't want to see the picture those pieces would make. And as Dean stood watching his brother, the mark of Gabriel's mating peeking above the waist of his sleep pants, standing and basking in the love of his mate, something in Dean Winchester shattered. It just didn't break; it was obliterated. Dean actually swayed on his feet for a minute, then dropped to his knees.

Sam and Gabriel turned quickly at the sound, and when they saw Dean on the floor, they rushed to his side, helping him to his feet.

"Dean? What the hell? Are you okay?" Sam asked, concern clear on his face.

"Dean-o, do I need to unmake that flask?" Gabriel used the small joke to cover his deepening worry over the human's condition. He'd hoped that seeing him and Sam happy would make Dean go after what he wanted. But the archangel hadn't realized just how broken the hunter really was. Guilt surged in him as he looked into Dean's haunted, tired eyes, and he turned to Sam.

"Sammy, take him to bed, okay? I'll be up in a few minutes."

Sam nodded, slipping an arm around his older brother and guiding him up the stairs. When they were gone, Gabriel's features darkened, and for a moment he looked like the wrathful archangel that had helped slaughter his father's enemy's millennia ago. He concentrated for a moment, then vanished for the kitchen in a flutter of feathers.

Castiel sat on the large enclosed porch that encircled the house, lost in thought. The words Dean had spoken the night before rang in his head. He was starting to understand that his time on earth had started to unravel as soon as he had realized what he and Dean were meant to share. When he first appeared to the hunter, he was an angel through and through; he followed orders, he served his Father, and he accepted his place in the garrison without question. Then, as he slowly grew to know Dean Winchester, he became confused. He was a mix of anger, sin, and utter devotion to the cause of saving the humans he shared the planet with, despite their utter lack of awareness or gratitude for his sacrifices. Castiel grew to like, and respect the human, despite his many bad habits, and found himself seeking out excuses to be in Dean's company. Then, he'd met his older brother, and been delivered the shock of his existence. Not that Gabriel was alive and well; that was hardly shocking. The shock had been when Gabriel showed up in front of Castiel after they left him soaking wet in the warehouse.

Castiel had been in an abandoned farmhouse in Israel when the archangel fluttered into existence in front of him, and just watched him for a minute. Right when Castiel had been ready to decide he was done dealing with the angel turned Trickster, Gabriel had spoken.

"Why haven't you claimed Dean Winchester, Castiel?"

Castiel had gaped for a moment.

"Claimed Dean-? I…what are you talking about?" Castiel has lost his composure in a blink at the very suggestion.

"He's yours, so why haven't you claimed him and made him your mate? " Gabriel asked, with a look on his face that clearly said he thought Castiel belonged on the short bus.

"He is not mine, Gabriel. That is ridiculous." Castiel had gathered his scattered wits now, and scoffed at the older angel.

"Wow…you really are an idiot, Castiel." Here Gabriel had shrugged while Castiel glared. "I guess you'll figure out the truth 10 minutes after he breaks." With that, the archangel had vanished, and left Castiel alone with a realization he was in no way ready for.

After that, events had happened so fast, and Castiel had used every argument he could muster to dispute the fact Gabriel had presented to him. By the time God brought him back to life, better than ever, he'd deceived himself into almost believing the archangel was wrong. And Dean moved in with Lisa, so Castiel had avoided him. It hurt him to do that, but he refused to acknowledge that particular pain. He did anything he could to ignore what was right in front of him. It made it easier to lie to Dean later, because the truth was, he'd been doing it for so long it had become a habit. And when he was a "god", the evil in him squelched any feeling he'd had for Dean.

Now, as Castiel sat and pondered, he wondered how he'd managed to be so stupid. The day he had seen Dean after the Leviathans left him in the reservoir for dead, he could remember his heart pounding at the sight at the green eyed man standing in front of him with the dead demon at his feet. And he'd been so drawn to him, he nearly forgot the woman he called his wife existed. There had been a few minutes in the mental hospital, before he assumed Sam's burden, that Castiel had been closer than he ever been before to telling Dean the truth; that they were mates, and that he, Castiel was a fool for denying it. But Sam had come first, and then it was too late. Castiel had never told Dean, but while Lucifer had been in Castiel's head, his main weapon had been Dean. He'd reminded Castiel over and over again about how he'd failed the one man he should have saved. How he'd hurt Dean, how he'd always hurt Dean, and how all he could ever bring the hunter was pain. And after the prophet appeared, and Castiel was in nominal control of his own mind, he'd just…ignored it. He could have made himself better at any time, and he knew it, but he chose not to. He chose to hide again. And until last night, he'd been able to tell himself that Dean was better off without him.

"Castiel. We are going to talk. NOW."

The younger angel turned at the sound of Gabriel's voice, and waited. He could well imagine what was about to be said, but he waited in silence just the same.

"You are killing Dean. He's breaking, Castiel, and if you let this continue, there won't be any fixing it. So you are going to get off your ass, get up those stairs, and fix it." Gabriel stated.

"I..I am unsure how. I have made a horrible mistake, Gabriel, and I have no idea how to fix it." Castiel said quietly, head hanging.

Gabriel paused for a minute. Quiet admission of guilt from Castiel was actually the last thing he expected. Before he could speak, Sam came out, anger on his face. he got into Castiel's person space, his concern for his brother overriding any other thought.

"You are killing my brother, you bastard! If he gives up because of you, I will pour the holy oil myself!"

Before Sam could say anything else, Gabriel wrapped him in gentle, arms and pulled him back.

"He knows Sammy. We're gonna fix this, okay?" Gabriel said, stroking the hunter's cheek.

"How?" Sam asked.

They both turned and looked at Castiel now.

"I…I don't know." Castiel admitted.

"Gabriel.." Sam began.

"It's okay, kiddo." Gabriel told him, kissing his cheek gently. He turned to Castiel then. "I'll tell you what you do, little brother. You march yourself up those stairs, strip naked, and admit to him that you are the world's biggest ass, and tell him you will do anything to make this right with him, up to and including anything that involves handcuffs. Got it?"

Castiel's expression was a mix of terror and hope. He nodded, and vanished. Once he was gone, Sam turned to Gabriel.

"Uh, Gabriel, do you think he took that naked thing seriously?"

Upstairs, Dean lay in bed in a room that was painted the most obnoxious shade of purple he'd ever seen. He stared at the ceiling, and once again, he felt that same despair he had that night in the junkyard, when he'd told God he didn't know how much longer he could do this. When he'd pled for help. He didn't waste any effort pleading this time though. That much he had learned. As he felt an odd sense of numbness settle over him, there was a flutter of wings, and suddenly a naked, blushing angel stood in front of him, trying to subtly cover his private parts.

Dean stared in silence. What, he thought with an odd sense of calm, is there to say?

"Dean, I have been a fool. I did not understand at first what I felt for you, and when I did, it…it frightened me. Human emotions are so…intense, and I was unsure how to broach the subject with you. You appeared to be strictly hetero-normative, and…and I was a coward. I have caused you terrible pain, and I will understand if you are unable to forgive me. But there is one thing I must make clear to you first…"here Castiel paused, and locked eyes with Dean. "It was never you Dean. You are a man any one would be proud to have as a mate. You are brave, resilient, and strong. You have compassion for others that drives you to make sacrifices that you are never thanked for, and yet you persist. You are honorable, forgiving and good. You exemplify all the best traits of humanity. My inability to approach you was my weakness, and as long as I exist, my failure to you will be the one that brings me the most pain. It was never you, Dean. Never."

Dean just stared at the angel for a moment, then spoke.

"Cas, why the hell are you naked?"

The angel looked slightly startled by the question, and answered honestly.

"I wanted to talk to you. But I was unsure how to approach you. Gabriel told me I should strip naked and admit to you that I was the 'world's biggest ass'. He then suggested I offer you handcuffs, but I'm unsure as to why."

Dean made a mental note to thank the archangel later. Then he stood up, and pulled Castiel into bed.

"Dean?"

"What Cas?"

"Does this mean you have forgiven me?"

"No, this means I will eventually forgive you. After you make some serious amends." Dean told him.

Castiel thought for a moment.

"There are two things I think you should be aware of Dean."

Dean sighed. Cock blocked at every turn.

"And what would those things be, Cas?"

"First, if I engage in sexual intercourse with you, I will mark you, and claim you. I will be unable to stop myself."

"You already marked me Cas, remember?" Dean said.

"But I will add my sigil to that mark. I thought you should know that."

"I figured, Cas. I wouldn't be taking your naked ass to bed if that wasn't what I was looking for." Dean told him. "Now can we get on with this?" the hunter asked.

"There two things." Castiel reminded him.

"Of course there were. Fine, Cas. What's the second thing?" Dean asked, with what he considered heroic patience.

"I am a virgin."

Dean paused in his perusal of the naked angel then.

"Cas, you were married."

"Yes, but I was unable to perform sexually with her. And it was not a legal marriage. I had no identity, so we could not technically get married." Cas told him.

Dean paused again.

"And…she was okay with that?"

"She thought perhaps my inability to obtain an erection was because God wished to keep me pure." Cas explained.

"Uh huh. And uh..does Cas junior work now? Dean asked, half dreading the answer.

"Who?" Castiel asked.

"Your dick Cas! Does it work now?" Dean clarified a touch impatiently.

"Oh. Yes. I am currently erect. I believe the reason I could not perform sexually with her was because she was not you." Castiel said.

Dean smiled then.

"There's a romantic in you after all, Cas. "

Castiel looked a little confused by that, but then Dean stood up, and began pulling off his clothes. Castiel watched, mesmerized for long enough to give Dean time to pull off his shirt. Then he made a quick gesture with his hand, and the hunter was naked. Dean looked at Cas and raised an eyebrow.

"I see patience is going to be something we have to work on." Dean commented.

"Later. " Castiel suggested.

Dean crawled into the bed next to his angel, and pushed Castiel onto his back.

"Later works for me." He leaned down then, and kissed Cas softly, starting at one corner of his full, eager lips, and nibbling and lapping his way across. Cas moaned as Dean worked, and the hunter grinned down at him. "Yeah, definitely a virgin..just wait Cas. It gets better." Dean leaned back down then, and sealed their mouths together, sliding his tongue against Castiel's. The angel groaned, and lifted his hips. Cas understood that he wanted something very badly, he just didn't know precisely what, and he didn't know how to ask. Dean seemed to understand, and he started stroking his way down Cas's body. He touched and kissed places on Cas that no one ever had, and the angel moaned, and whimpered, and pled in Enochian beneath him. When Dean slid his hand between them, and stoked Castiel's leaking erection from root to tip, the angel's eyes flew open and locked with Dean's. They were already hazy with desire, and as much as Dean wanted to draw this moment out, to make to make it last, he figured neither of them had the self- control to hold out. He whispered in Castiel's ear now.

"Cas, how do you wanna do this?"

The angel forced himself to try to focus with limited success. He was currently feeling things that he had never even imagined were possible, and his mind was short circuiting.

"Wha..what?" he managed.

"Do you wanna top, or do you want me to?" Dean knew enough about gay sex to figure it was polite to ask before you rode your partner into the mattress. Besides, he wasn't sure if there wasn't some angelic rule about the guy with the wings topping if a mark was taking place.

"I..I just want you...show me..take me.." Castiel gasped out.

That was all Dean needed to hear. He slid his knees between Castiel's and then paused, giving a frustrated groan.

"Damn it Cas. I don't have lube…I need lube to get you ready. Maybe Gabriel.."Dean cringed at the thought of asking the archangel, but at the moment, he would have been willing to ask Sammy if it meant he got to come inside his angel.

"No..no..you don't need it. I'm an angel. I'm ready now.."Castiel promised.

Dean reached down then, and slid a finger over the puckered entrance, and Castiel arched his back up and groaned. Dean found the promised wetness, and Cas's hot, snug, hole welcomed his finger easily. Dean gave a groan of relief, and positioned himself over the angel.

"Open your eyes, Cas…look at me." Dean rasped.

Cas's blue eyes fluttered open, and he stared at Dean as the hunter sank into his body. Cas thrashed, and panted, and gritted his teeth as Dean filled him, and Dean gave a long, loud moan. One thought filled Dean at that moment. Home. Once he was seated in his angel, Dean paused, wanting to be sure Cas was ready. Soon Cas was nudging his hips up, and whimpering.

"Move…please Dean.."

Dean moved. He drew out, and practically slammed back in. Castiel wailed his name, and met his thrusts, shaking and groaning as he did. Dean knew he wasn't going to last long, but he figured the virgin that was begging and grunting underneath him wasn't going to either. He kept a steady pace for as long as he could, until he felt the orgasm building in his belly, and gripping his taunt sac. He looked down at Castiel now, and the angel looked..panicked, and overwhelmed. He stroked Cas's cheek, and whispered to him.

"Cas…gonna come…need you to come for me, baby.."

"Can't! Dean..it's..it's too much…too good…can't.." Cas whimpered.

Dean saw the look in Cas's eyes that said that his body was about to be shaken by something he couldn't control, and that it frightened the angel. He reached down, and wrapped a hand around Cas's twitching, leaking erection, and started to tug gently.

"You can, baby…I promise…I know…it's so good…just let go baby, I'm here…come for me Castiel.."

Dean chose that moment to slide his fingers over the red, weeping head of Castiel's cock, and give a gentle squeeze. Cas grabbed Dean's arm where his handprint already lay, and gave a scream in his true voice as light poured out of him, driving the darkness out of Dean, and ropes of come flew from his tip. Dean felt the hot, velvet channel contract on him, and he roared as he poured into his angel. The pleasure was so intense Dean was fairly certain he blacked out, and when he opened his eyes, he lay on top of a shivering, moaning angel, and white and blue wings surrounded him. He kissed Castiel softly, and the angel opened his eyes. He looked blissed out, and Dean grinned a little.

"Good?" he asked, knowing the answer.

Castiel moaned again.

"So good." He nuzzled his face into Dean's neck, and sighed.

"Dean, I should have told you this a million times before now. I love you. I am utterly unworthy to have you, but I will try as long as I live to make you happy, I swear it." Castiel said softly.

Dean opened his mouth, then closed it. He was dangerously close to doing something he always avoided like grim death, even when he needed it. He realized though, that there was no stopping it. He croaked out,

"I love you too."

Then Dean Winchester dissolved into some seriously overdue tears.