Title: And The Cardinal Hits The Window
Pairing: Dean/Cas, Unrequited Cas/Sam
Rating: M

Trigger Warnings: Sexual child abuse (nonexplicit), incest, bullying, victim blame, drug use, underage!Cas for a moment, then depends on your country's/state's consent age.
Summary: Dean Winchester has just turned 17 and is beginning his senior year in high school. He plans on having an uneventful last year with his only worry being his 13 year old kid brother Sam who's just starting high school. All that changes when 14 year old Castiel Novak joins the school year and Sam begins to have some pretty strong feelings for him. Dean likes the kid, too, even if he is shy and very twitchy.

But Castiel has a strict and abusive father by the name of Lucifer, and an equally appalling older brother name Uriel, a new senior to the school. Uriel brings a storm of trouble to the school, including to Dean who he immediately bumps heads with. When Castiel accepts a sleep over invitation from Sam as part of a study project, he never expects to be moved to kiss Dean and he certainly never expects to be caught by Dean's father.

(Prompt given by human credential ; first 3 chapters beta'd by xXLoverOrHaterXx)

Introduction

'Who is that?'

Sam's mouth dropped a few inches to the floor. He'd lived in the area for most of his life (born, moved, and then came back), but this was the first time he'd seen him. How had he missed this guy? He stood out far too much among their peers.

The boy held his books tightly against his chest as he moved through the crowded hallway. His locker seemed close by the way he was walking, which, in the future, would benefit Sam. It looked like he had black hair, but the shine from the lights in the hallway showed sparks of dark brown. The kid had smooth skin, what he could see of it anyway, since the boy wore several layers of clothing. It sent an odd jolt through him. Sam was curious. The boy stuffed his books in the locker with haste and grabbed a few more out of it before slamming it shut.

Then he looked up.

Bright blue eyes.

Not all too unusual, but with a spark that most people didn't have. One blink, and then he was lost again in the crowd of students, walking away with hunched shoulders.

He looked lonely.

Sam tried hard to remember his face. They maybe had two middle schools and even then he couldn't recall the face. Although, it wasn't that strange considering Sam didn't remember many people.

Sam had been pushed forward by a group of encouraging teachers and his family into an accelerated program. He'd felt scared and intimated enough for his first day as it was, and being an accelerated student was hard. Most of his peers were 15-16 while he was following behind at a 13. He was the 'fishiest' of the fish. Luckily enough, he had a natural born talent for growing tall and fast; at least he looked like the others. There were more than enough nerves burning through him. Sam really didn't need the extra butterflies of introducing himself to strangers. But this kid? This kid he had to get to know.

Sam had always had a curiosity for life in general, no matter what aspect of it, it didn't matter what subject it was. History; he wanted to know who the president's- secretary's-uncle's- daughter was. Math, he needed to know when alphabetical symbols began to be used in mathematics and why they mattered; what they represented. Hell, even language, he wanted to know which style of speech or spelling came from? Germanic? Latin? Roman? He needed to know it all.

Sam turned back to his locker and fished his own materials out, heading for class with this new curiosity in mind. He made a steady pace to his first class with ease. He gave a small short wave to his fellow classmates in an attempt to be sociable. His mother had always stressed politeness.

Ruby and Jessica sat down next to him at the front. He'd known them for a while. Ruby lived five houses down from his on the left, and Jessica lived across the street from him. Despite them being a few years older than him, they'd managed to establish a strong friendship throughout the years. Even with the mutual friendship with him, as they sat down, he was reminded of how much the two girls seemed to dislike each other.

"Do you always have to sit up front?" Ruby complained, as she tossed her supplies on the desk.

"It's easier to see the board and hear the teacher," Sam replied, while organizing the pencils and pens in front of him.

"I think it makes sense," Jessica put in as she organized her desk similar to the way Sam did.

They weren't technically in the same grade, but Sam had been put into a higher level math class because of his scores. There weren't enough high scoring students to have a class of their own, so he was put into an upper level.

While Sam had his head turned, Ruby stuck out her tongue at Jess.

"You guys know a lot of people right?" Sam asked while they waited for the teacher to arrive.

They answered at the same time which left him trying to decipher which part of the answer belonged to whom. The general consensus was 'yes'.

"There was this guy I saw-"

"Oh man Sammy, A GUY!" Ruby giggled.

Sam turned to give her a confused stare at the giggle. "Yeah, this one guy I saw. His locker is a few down from mine and he seemed -" he paused "- lonely... I don't know what grade he's in but maybe you've seen him. I don't think I've seen seen him before. Ever. He had a... it looked like-... it was this hand knit sweater and black slacks and really messy black hair? Kinda looked out of place?"

Sam had never had much tolerance for people that seemed lonely. While having Dean Winchester as his brother gave him plenty of notoriety, he'd spent most of his childhood on the outskirts of people. So when he saw someone, especially like that boy that radiated loneliness, he felt the need to make them feel welcome. Despite his personal social anxieties and shyness, he'd spent his 'free time' in middle school sitting at random tables with people who were sitting by themselves. He knew the feeling of being alone. It wasn't until early middle school, when his brother had coached him on how to say 'hi', that he'd overcome that hurdle. Those sunken shoulders reminded him of the days he'd spent tucked away in a corner at lunch, too shy to approach any of his classmates for a seat at their table.

Sam remembered hating that feeling and had made a choice never to let anyone else go through it if he could help it.

It seemed amazing how caring for other people could bring out the inner strength in a person. Some insane energy that didn't exist until you cared about other people. Things you would never be able to do for yourself, you could maybe do for other people.

"That could be a thousand kids," Ruby said, rolling her eyes.

"I just figured-"

"What she means, is that at least in our grade, we were never in a class with the person you described. I haven't seen any kids with hand knit sweaters since like, elementary school. Maybe it was a onetime thing? If you see him again, we might be able to help you if you pin point him out," Jessica offered with a smile.

Before Ruby could make a retort, the teacher walked in and their first class started.

Sam tried to keep his eye out for the kid for a few days, loosing hope steadily, until one day he found him sitting in his English class. It had only been a week since classes started so schedules being moved around wasn't new, but that it would be this mystery kid threw him for a loop. He blinked and stood stock still at the door, staring at him before moving to take his usual seat at the front next to him. Sam spent the few minutes, while others filed into the classroom, trying to figure out how to introduce himself. Just to say 'hi'. But for whatever reason, it seemed harder to do it with him than other kids. The class got started before he could figure out something to say.

Weeks passed without him being able to say hello. They hit the material fast and hard. The only bit of info he'd managed to gather about the kid was that he always wore oddly knitted sweaters.

The first time he got the courage to talk to the kid was unfortunate.

It was in between his fourth and fifth period.

Sam was walking across the 'senior bridge' as it had been dubbed. The small stretch of hallway spreading between the massive space between two stairways to the second floor. He was trying to visit his brother, who usually spent time there when he saw him; Sam watched as a kid knocked into the boy he'd been obsessing over. The boy's supplies flung out of his arms and exploded across the ugly carpeted floor. The boy scrambled to pick up his stuff as fast as he could, trying to avoid getting trampled on by the crowd around him.

They'd recently also okayed drinks outside of the tiled cafeteria. The school had carpeted floors so it made sense for them not to be allowed past the cafeteria. The boy he'd knocked into had one. It had jostled and sloshed all over the boy's jacket and dribbled down. Sam watched the expression change on the older boys face as he glanced at the mess on his shirt, and then looked at him crawling along the floor to gather his stuff. Sam didn't even remember what had been going on as he turned away from his brother and raced down the stairs.

The look the older boy was wearing meant trouble.

He sped his way past people until he halted before the older student. Sam's hand flew out without much thought and grabbed the wrist flying out before it could hit him.

His brother had been obsessed in teaching him about self-defense and reaction time.

There were angry curse words and tugging until Sam looked up. There was a small bit of horror and recognition from the older kid as Sam gripped his wrist. Everyone knew who's brother he was.

"It was an accident," Sam said sternly, glaring up at the older teen. He refused to let go of the hand that still twitched towards him.

"The hell it was! Do you know much a letter jacket costs?"

Sam tightened his grip, surprising the teen with its force. "Yeah, I do. My brother, Dean Winchester, I think you know him-" he hated using that card "-has had to buy one for the last three years."

The boy's face blanched a little into bleach pale at the name; apparently he hadn't been sure before that. There was a visible change in attitude as he began to recognize fully who Sam was.

"Didn't realize you were in high school already" The teen's voice trembled a little while he pulled his hand back.

"First year," Sam replied with a dark glance and a stern tone. He could never stand bullies. He turned around and the crowd that had gathered around them began slowly dissipating as he knelt to help him.

"Thank you," the other boy whispered into the ground, as he horded his pencil case and books to his chest. It looked like his hands were trembling.

The boy finally looked up and Sam was struck speechless by the weight of the full gaze on him. "Uhm, no problem, he's just a jerk... I'm just lucky to have my older brother to keep me safe."

The boy smiled briefly, a sad twitch of his lip before he shook his head. "No. Thank you, very much. I appreciate your show of kindness."

And then he took off.

But, in the middle of the hasty retreat, Sam caught the quiet and rushed words, "My name is Castiel. And thank you again."

At the end of the day Sam met his older brother, Dean, at the senior parking lot. He slid into the passenger side of the old Impala and waited for the familiar hum of the engine. When it didn't start immediately, he looked at his brother.

There was a smile on his lips.

"Saw what you did today kiddo," Dean started with,"I'm proud of you; stood up for something. Might make a man out of you yet."

And with a blush and a laugh they started driving home.

Sam was still glowing a little bit at his brother's compliment when they got home. It was immediately taken out of him by their dad.

"How was school today?" "Do anything useful?" "I want to see your last grades."

Sam had complained to Dean one night that he swore their father never rode him as hard about this. His brother had been soccer captain for three years before taking his senior year off. He was the 'pride' of the family. The one time Sam had brought it up, his older brother had only ruffled his hair, eyes turning back to the movie they'd been watching at the time. He couldn't remember the name. But before he'd gone to bed his brother had muttered, 'He just wants to make sure you get accepted into those high end colleges you've been day dreaming about like a dork. Couldn't fantasize about chicks to be easy could you? Just had to be smart. You're like, 12, you shouldn't be thinking about that stuff yet. Just tell him you want to be a mechanic and he'll leave you alone about the school shit.'

Sam had glared at him as he left the room.

But that was in the past.

"Don't roll your eyes at me," their father said as Sam listened to the same speech he'd had his entire life.

This one had been spiced up a bit since he was in AP.

"You're not having any issues? The age gap is pretty high."

Dean laughed as he came back downstairs after disappearing for a bit to get rid of his school stuff. "I don't think you need to worry about that. Little Samantha over here got some hair on her chest today."

"It's Sam," the young boy muttered in complaint. He had been hoping the story would not come up to their father.

"Oh really? And what did our Sam do?"

Dean grinned as he leaned against the kitchen counter, "Tell him Sammy."

"It's nothing. A kid was getting picked on and I helped him out a little. Can I go now?" Sam asked, running a hand through his hair, already halfway to the stairs to flee to his room.

"Well done, son," he heard his father say as he raced up the stairs; followed by a remark from Dean in relation to balls finally having dropped. Really, he could've just left it at the 'I'm proud of you' in the car.

Still, he did feel a certain personal pride in himself.

Middle school life had been relatively tame for him, but he'd overcome some personal demons. His family commenting on it made him think of the boy at the center of his heroics; even if he'd technically only threatened the boy with his older brother. It wasn't like Sam had charity case complex or something, but the moment he'd heard him whisper his name shyly, Sam had decided that if he was going to accomplish anything in his high school career it would be to become friends with this boy.

Sam went to bed determined to have an actual conversation with him.

Except, once again the evils of an intense information filled lecture, something Sam usually enjoyed, kept him from having no more than a brief hello with Castiel. He'd even tried to search him out before class started. Sam had roamed through the halls without anything to show for it, but a knack for getting lost. He couldn't even manage to catch Castiel at his locker. Either Sam sucked at searching out people or Castiel was avoiding him.

A week into school and a snappy conversation from Dean to nut up about his new friend and talk to him so would stop hearing about it, made him push forward.

"Hello, Castiel," he said sitting down. Sam was taken aback when they boy twitched and squeaked like he hadn't expected anyone to talk to him. The tense shoulders seemed to relax a little when he noticed who it was. There was a shy smile and Sam felt a bubble of joy in him. He was off to a good start on his plan.

"I apologize for leaving so quickly," Castiel muttered, shifting uncomfortably in his desk. "I didn't even ask for your name. That was very rude of me."

Sam laughed as he sat down. "Don't worry about it. You're doing it right now. I'm Sam," he said sticking his hand out. He almost missed the way Castiel flinched at the motion. He didn't think Castiel would be so easy to surprise. Sam frowned a little, confused; the kid was jumpy as all hell, and focused on getting his books out. He didn't think he was that intimidating. He waited for the other boy to continue the conversation. It didn't happen. Once Sam had run out of stuff to fiddle with on his desk he looked over to see that Castiel was just sitting there silently staring.

"I haven't seen you around much, where are you from?" Sam asked, thinking of the most neutral question to start a conversation.

Castiel's head jumped up a bit and his eyes flit across the room. "We are new to the area. Lived on the other side of the city, my father decided it was time for new scenery."

"Welcome then. I hope those jerks haven't completely ruined what you think about our school. They're not all bad. The kids here, I mean," Sam said, with an easy smile he'd mimicked from his brother. Dean was so much better at social situations.

Castiel fell silent for a second, head tilted in mild contemplation.

Finally those blue eyes turned to him.

"You seem pleasant so far, at least," he said softly, as the teacher walked in to begin to lecture.

Sam didn't even care that his teacher hadn't gotten their last quizzes graded yet. He didn't need an A on a quiz to make himself feel accomplished for that day. The feeling carried him through the rest of the day, even if Castiel had bolted from the classroom the second the bell rang. Castiel seemed like the type to take his studies very seriously so maybe he was one of those kids that always got to class super early. After all, Castiel was always seated by the time Sam made it into the class.

The day faded quickly and the second Sam got into the Impala he began to rattle off details about his day. Dean laughed and teased him about how it seemed like he was talking about a crush or something. Sam smacked his older brother in the arm but laughed with him. "Nothing like that, just, you know. I get the feeling. Being new someplace and being lonely. I'm just glad to get to help out," he said with a bright smile.

Dean glanced over with a small frown and a dip in his eyebrows, "When were you feeling lonely? I didn't hear about any of this. Whose ass do I have to kick?"

Sam rolled his eyes, "Don't worry about it Dean. It was a while ago."

"Doesn't make it any better," Dean muttered, focusing on the road. "So what's your new best friends name?"

"Castiel."

Dean's eyebrows quirked, "Now that's a mouthful. Sounds like a girl name."

"He's not a girl," Sam defended with a huff.

"Calm down there champ. I'm sure your girlfriend's got all her junk in the right places," Dean said, laughing as he received a blow to his arm. "Ow- you're so abusive you know."

"Oh shut up. You deserved it, jerk."

"Maybe, maybe not. Just try not to infect Cas with your-OW"

Sam smacked his brother as they parked in the drive way and watched as his brother got out of the car, all the while muttering the name to himself and giving off periodic chuckles.

'Cas'.

Sam decided that he liked that nickname.

He spent the rest of the evening worrying about when it was appropriate to give someone a nickname despite his brother just throwing one out there. He huffed in frustration, lying in his bed. He couldn't believe that no one had made a manual for how to relate properly to other people at this point. It seemed like one of the greater failures of humanity.

At the same time on the other side of the city, as Sam contemplated social etiquette, a neighbor pulled his curtain shut tighter and turned his TV volume up.

The screaming and shouting that happened on some nights was about to start.

It always started with a slammed front door.

A tall figure, in a hoodie, ragged torn pants, a backpack hanging loosely from his shoulder, a cigarette between his lips; strode out of the house after the second slammed door.

The door he had just slammed flew back open and yelling exploded across the neighborhood after the teen.

The father standing on the porch.

The teen made no hurry to move faster, his father hadn't chased after him in years.

The polished mahogany door closed eerily softly.

The neighbor turned up the volume a few more notches.

Damn Novak's and their trouble making children.

For a public character the head of the house sure had a shit of a son or two.

Although, in all honesty the neighbor wasn't being truly fair.

Usually there wasn't any screaming. If anything it was just the few arguments on the porch.

If only they had listened just a little closer.

What the neighbors chose to ignore should've been paid more attention to.

Castiel was watching with big eyes in the hallway as his father strode back into the house. His father's body shaking with furious intent as he ripped the curtains shut in the rest of the house.

He did not take kindly to being disrespected.

Castiel knew what was coming.

Usually it didn't leave him with a limp and in pain. His father didn't want to leave physical evidence of any kind; very proper, very thorough.

Quiet.

Discreet.

Not tonight though.

He was furious.

Castiel swallowed nervously trying to pray the night away with his palms clenched together.

At least Uriel was out of the house.

At least he got away.

It's what Castiel told himself as he backed into the wall.

At least he got away.