Warnings: mentions prostitution, child abuse (in a way) and drug use.
I don't own Supernatural that pleasure is all Eric Kripke's, lucky man!
AU-starts at the end of season four. You will notice a time discrepancy in the story. That's because time moves differently at Gabriel's house than it does on Earth. In reality, only six months passes from the time Gabriel finds Sam to when the pair shows up at Bobby's house.
The Lonely Man
He had never been so alone in his life before now. Sure, living with his brother and father was no picnic with them leaving him for the hunt. Then when he went to school, his family disowned him. No, now it was very different. His brother had told him that if he left, he should stay gone. Just like his dad did a few years ago. When he left his brother in that motel room after the fight, he decided to kill Ruby and leave. Just go somewhere nobody could find him. Lilith be damned since his desire to avenge his brother was now broken, just like he was.
It was actually the message he got from his brother that decided his course of action. After listening to his brother call him a vampire, a monster, he took out the demon knife and killed Ruby. She made him what he was and he hated her for it. Because of her, he had lost his family. After he salted and burned her corpse, he then took a quick trip to a tattoo parlor where he had them permanently mark him with sigils and charms to hide him from everybody. It essentially made him invisible to anyone who was looking for him. Then he went to a motel and got a room. He needed to recover from the tattooing. Sam was lonely but it would take a miracle for him to go back this time.
It was done, Lilith was sent back to the deepest part of Hell and Dean, with help, had done it. She had actually been waiting for Sam to come and kill her but when she saw Dean she knew that the plans they had to open the Cage went down in the toilet. She tried to kill him but that damned Angel had muted her powers so Dean could read the exorcism over her. He looked down at the body of the dental hygienist and wanted to kick it but he didn't. He knew that she wasn't at fault, that she had been possessed. To honor her, he gave her a hunter's funeral but he was puzzled. After everything Sam had done to get to this point, he hadn't tried to kill Lilith. In fact, one of the things Lilith was surprised about was that Sam gave up even looking for her.
A month, it had been a full frigging month since the fight between brothers and Sam walked out on Dean. Castiel found Ruby's body a few miles away from the convent. She had been stabbed then burned but there was no sign of Sam anywhere. Zachariah had been pissed when Dean couldn't tell him where Sam was. He was so angry that he had broken both of Dean's legs before he left. Castiel healed him but that still didn't answer the question of where Sam was. Nobody could find the kid, neither Angel, demon nor hunter. It was like he had fallen off the face of the earth. As far as anyone knew, he was still alive since he hadn't been sighted in Heaven or Hell.
Dean felt a tremendous amount of guilt for yelling the same words to Sam that their father did when Sam was accepted to Stanford. Only that time, they knew where he was, unlike now. When he asked Castiel to help, the Angel just stated that Sam himself was of no more import and looking for him was a big waste of time. He, Dean, had more important things to do than to worry about his brother. Then Castiel reminded him that he, Castiel, had brought him out of hell and the same Angel could put him back in. So Dean worked for the Angels but he also drank to excess. After going on a hunt drunk and almost getting himself killed, Castiel told Dean he couldn't drink anymore. Dean's response was to hole up at Bobby Singer's place with angel repelling sigils around the yard. The Angel tried to visit Dean's dreams and found he was rebuffed.
Castiel was very puzzled and feeling hurt. He had thought he and Dean was forging a strong relationship but he didn't realize that Dean would put his brother over everything and everyone. This was the man who would have been Michael's Vessel. He should have remembered why Dean was in Hell in the first place. It was for the love of his brother that he had made the deal to bring his brother back from the dead. Dean had sacrificed his life and his future for the same brother that he ultimately disowned. Now Dean felt guilty and wanted his brother back. Castiel remembered when he had to hunt down one of his own fallen brothers. At first, it hurt to kill them but then he had been convinced that he was right and they were wrong. Since they were wrong, they didn't deserve any forgiveness from him and that was the view he had of Sam Winchester. Now, listening to Dean's fears, loss, and grief, Castiel was starting to understand that he had stood in his Father's stead and passed judgment. It was not his place to do so, but he had anyway. He just prayed that, one day, he could make it up to both Winchesters.
For now, though, he had started to put out feelers for Sam. Nothing much was found except that a tattoo artist had done some neat tattoos on a guy the same night that Ruby had been killed. Castiel looked into the artist's mind and saw Sam. He also saw the tattoos Sam had requested and knew there was no way he would be able to find Sam unless Sam let him know where he was. He shouldn't have been surprised to see the sigils that hid the hunter from Angels on Sam's skin. He had always known the young man was extremely intelligent. What did surprise him was that they were written in Enochian and correctly too. At one time, he would have sworn that, unless taught by an Angel, no human would be able to write or read Enochian but somehow Sam was able to.
Other feelers he put out were to children, since they didn't question hearing a voice in their head. Castiel had also shown them a picture of the younger Winchester and said if they saw him that they were to pray to the Angel with the information. There had been a couple of children who had seen Sam but he had disappeared before Castiel could go to him. One child said his parents gave the young man a ride and another said Sam had saved him from being hit by a car. He had left before the child's parents came rushing to their son. Since he didn't have any positive news for Dean, Castiel decided not to say anything about these near misses.
Sam fidgeted in the alley, waiting for Randy to come so he could make a buy. Out of all the drugs he had tried, the only one that would stop the accusations and the hopelessness was heroin. Speed just made him jittery, crack was just nasty, coke was too expensive and the others just didn't help him forget. The only problem he had was earning enough to get a hit so he started to work the streets. Since he had no self-esteem, especially after finding out how Angels really saw him, he figured that this sin was just a drop in the ocean.
As he stood fidgeting, Sam breathed a sigh of relief. Randy came strolling up the alley, walking cockily that was an eerie resemblance to Dean. Sam shook off that thought and got out his money. No words were ever exchanged anymore, which was okay with both men. Sam started to walk towards Randy, money in hand while Randy came towards him. As they passed, they exchanged money for product then walked away. It was done so fast, if anyone had been watching they wouldn't have caught the buy. It had been set up through a third party, where, when and how much but Randy had to get to know Sam before he would agree to sell to the young hunter.
As Sam set out to get back to his "home", the shakes started to set in. It had taken him more time than he thought to earn this hit. All the johns wanted were blow jobs since they were quick and it was lunch time. Sam would have better paying johns later, when the sun went down. Now, all he wanted was to get stoned. When he got home, his hands were shaking almost too hard for him to set up the equipment. Lighting the candle took a lot of concentration, as did checking the strength of the heroin. Before he cooked, he put his belt around his arm then he got the drug ready. With practiced ease, he got the drug in the syringe then put it in his vein. Afterwards, he took the needle out and loosened the belt for the first rush. Laying back on his mattress, he closed his eyes and let the trip happen.
What Sam didn't know was that he had been followed by a creature he thought he had left behind a long time ago at the Mystery Spot. Loki had spotted Sam on the corner trying to earn money for his hit. He had noticed the tattoos rendering Sam invisible to anyone searching for him and knew that the only reason he had spotted Sam was because he hadn't been looking for the hunter. Before Sam left with the john, Loki added his own mark so he could find Sam later.
After playing a couple of pranks, Loki decided to look in on Sam but what he found was distressing. The young hunter was on a bed with a belt on his arm, loosened, and a syringe next to him. "Aw, kid, what the hell?"
Loki wondered where Dean was while Sam was shooting up. He couldn't believe that Sam would have left the brother he begged the Trickster to bring back to him so he looked into Sam's mind. After sifting through the drugged induced trip, he found his answer and was shocked. He saw Dean disowning Sam because of Ruby and he saw Sam killing Ruby because of Dean. He saw the self-hatred and deep fear that Sam felt. Pulling out, he wondered what he could do. He knew that he could clean the kid out but that was just the tip of a very big iceberg. If he didn't address the rest of the issues, Sam would just be in the same spot at a later time. Loki cursed the way Sam had been raised, Azazel for polluting a six month old baby and John Winchester for what he said to his son before he died. Mostly, he cursed Dean. Ever since Dean came back from Hell, he had been a self-righteous prick. Loki guessed that Dean had decided since he had been in Hell literally, he was going to put Sam there figuratively. Sam never had a chance but Loki was willing to give him one.
First thing he did was to purge the drugs from Sam's system. He put his hand over Sam's heart and the drugs started to leak out of his pores. Then, Loki made sure Sam was in a deep sleep before he transported the kid to a house that Loki used. Unless a person was invited, nobody could find it, the house and grounds were safe from Angels, demons and everyone else. After laying the kid on his bed, Loki erased the tattoos and put the markings on his ribs. Then he healed and erased all of the extensive scarring Sam had on his body. Loki wanted to make sure Sam didn't have any distinguishable marks to identify him. Then he dealt with the demon blood.
Originally, Sam had been born with powerful gifts but the demon blood blocked his access to them. Ideally, he should have grown up learning how to use them and when Loki purged Sam of the demon blood, he was going to have problems and there was a distinct possibility that Sam would go crazy. But the poison had to be gotten rid of. Thinking through ideas, he finally hit on the only one that would work. "I'm sorry, kiddo. I wish I could wake you up and give you a choice but I need to save your life. You touched me in a way I hadn't been touched in centuries and I want to repay you." With that said, Loki shed his demigod persona and became who he really was, the Archangel Gabriel.
In his true form, Gabriel made a cut appear on his wrist and held it to Sam's lips. Even in his sleep, Sam automatically drank deeply. When Gabriel felt he had enough, he gently took his wrist back. Then he wrapped his wings and arms around the young man who began to glow. When Gabriel lifted his wings, he was holding a baby who was a day old. Gabriel smiled and cooed at the baby. He felt a warmth in him that was overwhelming. He had planned to adopt Sam out to a nice couple but when he looked at the child in his arms, he knew that he couldn't do that. He would raise the baby himself.
Time passed differently at the home of Gabriel and Sam than it did on Earth. Gabriel found that Sammy was an intelligent boy with a very large heart. He worried someone could hurt his son because Sammy wouldn't understand evil if it came up and bit him but Gabriel didn't have it in him to change Sam. He loved him too much to do that to the boy. He did help Sammy control his natural gifts.
It was fun to watch the little boy look at the toys in the air that he had put there. Then Sammy tried it. He was able to lift the ones that didn't weigh very much but was very upset that he couldn't get Teddy in the air with the others. Gabriel explained that he was using a muscle that had to build up strength and Teddy was just too heavy for him at that moment. Gabriel also found that Sam was very empathic. The first time that gift had manifested, Gabriel had been angry at what his brothers were doing with Dean. He had found out that Zachariah's actions made it impossible for the hunter to leave Bobby's yard. When Sammy came close to Gabriel, his eyes became stormy and things started to fly into the wall. Gabriel went to his son and asked him why he was smashing things and Sammy replied, "Bad man! Bad man!" Gabriel kissed his son's head and calmed himself down. When he was calm, he noticed that Sam was also. But he also figured out that Sammy was telepathic as well as empathic since the two gifts were closely tied together.
What freaked Gabriel out what when he found the tiny wings on Sammy's back, six of them. He hadn't given any Grace to Sam but some of his blood…oh, crap! Looking at Sam, he could see Grace growing and attaching itself to Sam's tattered but brilliant soul. Some of Gabriel's Grace had snuck itself into his blood when he was replacing the demon blood. What he couldn't figure out was why it happened. Usually, Angelic Grace didn't accidently leave the Angel's body. It was like his soul. After thinking about what he had done, he realized why his Grace had acted on it's own. Sam had touched him before, with his dedication to his brother. Never before had Gabriel reversed a prank of his but because Sam touched his heart, he had. In his heart, Sam became the child of Gabriel long before the blood had been given. His Grace just solidified the connection. Gabriel vowed to give Sam the childhood he deserved.
When the visions started, they weren't as painful as when the demon blood was forcing them. Sammy told Gabriel about the stories in his head but he didn't understand them, especially where pain and hurt was involved. Gabriel took a deep breath and told his son about humans. He said that humans were given freedom of choice but sometimes they used that freedom to hurt others because of religion, race, sexual orientation and the like.
Sammy looked at his father and asked the dreaded three letter question, "Why?"
"Baby, I think it's because they are hurting themselves or because they were raised to hate certain people," Gabriel responded. He thought for a moment then came clean about himself, "When I was a Trickster, I told myself that I was bringing justice to the victim but now I realize I was acting out my own hurt feelings. Now you may have to hurt someone if they are trying to cause bodily harm to you or someone you love but be careful. Make sure you can't talk them down before you use your gifts on them, okay?"
"'Kay, Daddy," said the toddler. Because he was so upset about his vision of a man beating a woman, he didn't get down to play like he usually did but he stayed curled in his father's lap. Gabriel stroked his head and sang to him. He loved his son very much and hated to see him hurting.
What worried Gabriel was that he had isolated Sammy and he knew that it wasn't healthy for a child so he decided to start to bring his son to a playground that had people in it. At first, Sammy stayed next to his father, hiding behind him whenever anyone came over to talk to Gabriel but then his natural exuberance came out and he started to play with the other children. He enjoyed the outings but always loved being home. He felt safe there and not pretend to be something he wasn't.
When he was at home, he didn't have to conceal his wings. He could move things with his mind and talk silently to Daddy. He didn't have to think about being careful since he was stronger than all the kids and most adults he ran into at the park. Also, the feelings of the humans made it hard for him to not cry or get angry many times. When he ran into a kid with lots of bruises, Sammy was nice but hurting inside. He could feel what the abused child felt and it took Gabriel a very long time to calm his son down. Eventually, though, Sammy learned to build walls between him and everyone else so he wasn't affected by their feelings and thoughts. Gabriel praised his son for learning how to do that and gave him a puppy. Sammy smiled brightly and kissed his daddy.
"Love you daddy!" Sammy cooed.
"Love you too, baby!" Gabriel cooed right back.
Bobby now had two Angels, the Harvelle women, and Rufus under his roof. Word had gone around to those closest to Dean that Zachariah would use them to get to the older Winchester. Before he left Heaven, Castiel had located John, Mary, Jess, Ash, Joshua, Caleb, Pastor Jim and Pamela and sent them to a protected area on Bobby's property. He had been worried that Zachariah would use their souls also. He had been caught by a couple of the Angel's assistants and they were in the process of torturing him when Anna had rescued him. She was still mad at him for turning her over to the Angelic "police" but had forgiven him when she heard that he was being manipulated and was now trying to help Dean.
They appeared next to Bobby's gate where Dean met them to erase a part of the sigil so they could enter the property. He then redid the sigil and got them to the house. Ellen and Jo came out and started to work on Castiel while Anna stood by. He understood her reluctance to help him but it wasn't enough for Dean. He "requested" that she help his friend. After some yelling and pleas, she laid her hands on the wounded Angel and healed him.
They got a surprise in the mail one day. Two charms were sent with a note that stated Anna and Castiel needed to wear them so they would be protected from being cut off from Heaven and losing their powers. What concerned Dean was that it could have been a trap but a golden feather that accompanied the charms decided the two Angels. Somehow, their big brother Gabriel was trying to help them. It was the first sign he was still around.
By the time Sammy turned ten, his wing muscles were strong enough to carry him short distances. Gabriel loved teaching the boy to fly. He played tag and other fledgling games with his son. They both had lots of fun and they laughed continuously. Gabriel found a very long time ago that the easiest way to teach a fledgling was to make it fun, it wasn't any different with his son. Sammy was also extremely smart which helped when he was home schooled by Gabriel.
By the time Gabriel started to school his son, Sammy was already reading above his age level. Mathematics and languages also came very easily to the young boy. When it came to history and geography, Gabriel delighted in delving into his own memories and adventures to teach Sammy. He was a proud father and wondered how John Winchester could have missed this in his own child. His anger flared once again with the want to smite the elder Winchester but he pulled it back since he didn't want to explain to his son why he felt that way. He never lied to the boy and he didn't want to start.
Gabriel heard that Zachariah had started to up his campaign against Dean by using his loved ones, dead and alive. He sent two charms to help Anna and Castiel who had taken up residence at the Salvage Yard. He also made a visit to the place to insure his brother and sister were safe, along with the souls that were now residing there. When he got back to his son, Sammy was crying and curled in a ball.
"Hey, baby, what's wrong?" Gabriel asked.
"You left me alone! I couldn't find you at all!" the boy cried.
Gabriel's heart broke as he remembered all the time Sam had been left alone when the older Winchesters went on hunts. He didn't realize Sam would still have separation anxiety or how bad it would be. "Aw, baby, I'm so sorry. I had to do something quickly and I didn't think it would take long. Please forgive me?"
Sammy gave a sniff and blinked his eyes. He rubbed them before nodding. He could never hold a grudge if it meant his life. Gabriel picked him up and rocked him, singing softly until the child fell asleep. Never again would he leave Sam, he vowed. Never again.
For the next few weeks, Gabriel and Sam went to the park, bringing Angel with them. Angel was very protective of her masters and would stay next to Sam while he was playing. Once, a man approached the boy with ill-intentions. He had seen the beautiful child and wanted him. Sam got nervous when he came closer and started to back away. When the man rushed towards the boy, he found a very angry dog between him and his quarry. Gabriel appeared next to the dog, fire in his eyes. He had seen what the man had tried to do and got there in a blink of an eye. Putting a couple of fingers on the man's forehead, the man's eyes became blank then he turned around and left. Gabriel heard his son's cries and bent to pick the traumatized boy up.
"Shh, baby. Daddy's here and nobody's going to hurt you. Shh." Eventually, Sam calmed down and snuggled into his father. Gabriel looked down at the dog and murmured, "Thanks Angel. Fenrir will be so proud of you!" They went home where Gabriel made Sam some hot chocolate and put him to bed. He knew that later he would have to explain the man was a pedophile and wanted to hurt the boy. He also would explain what he did to the man. He caused the man to go to the police and confess everything he had done. It hurt not killing the bastard but he didn't want to kill his child's innocence. He had vowed never to go back down that path again.
He would never be like John Winchester.
"Why did I say that to Sam?" Dean mumbled to himself.
"What did you say, son?" John Winchester asked. He found he could walk around the yard and enter Bobby's house freely. Dean just pulled into himself and kept rocking. John sat next to his son and waited for a minute. Then he said, "You know, when I threw Sam out for wanting a different life, I never felt guiltier in my life. I couldn't believe I said that and I actually thought I had lost him. But, he had forgiven me even if I had hurt him badly.
"Your brother has this wonderful capacity to love and forgive. I never knew that until it was too late. I really wish I could talk to Sam now. Clear the air, you know? There is so much I wish I had done differently. Dragging the two of you around the country to fight demons and monsters was wrong. I should have gotten another house, a home for the two of you. I shouldn't have been a drill sergeant but a father. And I should have rejoiced in your differences. If I could do it differently, I would tell Sam how proud I really was of him and I definitely wouldn't have told you that you had to save your brother or kill him. That was very wrong of me. Can you ever forgive me?"
Dean looked at his father. Tears in his eyes as he nodded. Then he said, "I told Sammy that if he walked out that door don't come back. I was so mad about Ruby, the demon blood and him lying to me that I didn't think. Now I lost him and I can't go to look for him since that douche bag of an Angel is looking to send me back to Hell if I take one step off this property."
John made himself solid then put his arms around Dean. As the two Winchester men grieved, Mary came up to them. She had heard their sorrowful confessions and was mad but knew that being angry wouldn't help the situation. She kneeled down in front of them and put her arms around the two men, allowing them to cry out their pain without comment.
When they finally pulled themselves together, she said, "You two okay now?" Both men nodded, and then she continued, "Now, let's try to figure out how to find our baby boy." Decisively, she got up and walked towards the door. Looking back at the men, she made a "come on" gesture then went into the house. There was no arguing with her so they got to their feet and went inside.
Missouri, the most recent addition to their household, came out of the kitchen. She looked at the Winchesters and said, "You may not want to Dean, but you are to get yourself into this kitchen and eat something." Seeing him just stand there, she said more forcefully, "Now, boy, before I get my spoon!"
Drooping, Dean did what Missouri ordered. John chuckled and said to Mary, "Except for you, she is the scariest person on this planet. Ellen, however, is a very close second."
"I heard that Winchester!" Ellen said as she passed by the spirits on her way to the kitchen. John just rolled his eyes while Mary laughed.
After the living humans had eaten lunch, everyone gathered in Bobby's living room. They had a problem they needed to address. They were beginning to run out of food and supplies but didn't know how to get them. Missouri had brought a lot but that had been a month ago. Bobby didn't want to involve any of his friends from town for fear that Zachariah would grab them to use as ransom. Everything they thought of was discarded until a knock on the door sounded. When Bobby went to answer it, he found a UPS guy standing there, nervously waiting.
"Yeah?" Bobby asked.
"You Bobby Singer?"
"Yeah, what's it to you?"
"I have a delivery for you. Please sign here."
Bobby signed then waited while the UPS guy brought out box after box and put them on his doorstep. When he was through, there were twenty large boxes. Bobby scratched his head and picked up an envelope that was attached to one of the boxes. It read, "Will send more when this is almost gone, G."
Wondering who G was, Bobby opened the first box to find boxed food. The next few boxes held canned stuff while some held paper products. Then the real surprises were the boxes of fresh and frozen foods. Suspicious about the supplies, Bobby asked Castiel and Anna to check them out in case of poison or curses. Both Angels, after a thorough investigation, declared the supplies clean and helped the humans to put the stuff away. Then Anna asked to see the note. Bobby handed it to her and watched as she started.
"There is something strangely familiar about this note. The aura attached to it feels like I should know the sender," she said.
Castiel took the note and felt the same thing as Anna did. Something or someone was watching out for them, he felt. Someone was on their side. For the first time since Sam had disappeared, he felt hope.
Now that Sam had turned sixteen, Gabriel felt it was time to start training him to use his Archangel gifts and powers. He had grown into a fine young man with a great sense of humor. With the supply problem at Bobby's taken care of for a while, Gabriel turned his attention to teaching his son how to use the Angelic sword. Sam was a fast learner and soon they were sparring with ease. Gabriel also started to teach him the tricks he had learned from his brothers and as a Trickster knowing that everything he could teach his son increased his chances of surviving the coming battle with Zachariah and his crew. When the lessons were done, Gabriel then suggested hunting monsters and demons for practical applications of what he had taught the young man. Sam was enthusiastic, but Gabriel had warned him about going into a hunt without thorough research.
The first hunts they went on were hauntings. Gabriel had Sam do the research to learn who the ghost was and what had happened to make them stick around instead of going off with the reapers. The first ghost was a young girl who had been killed by her drunken uncle. She was causing the deaths of people who came around her house drunk. When Sam was done, he and Gabriel went to the house where the ghost was stuck. Sam stood back while he watched Gabriel talk to the ghost to get her to move on. He was in awe of his father's ability to convince an angry spirit to let go and hoped he could do it just as well.
Gabriel did the next few hauntings, one of which had to be forcibly moved on then it was Sam's turn. Again, it was a stubborn ghost who refused to move on. No amount of talking worked with it and, with Gabriel's nod, Sam put up his hand and concentrated. A white light surrounded the ghost as it gave a screech, then the ghost disappeared in a flash. Gabriel came up to his son and, putting his arms around the teen, he said, "Great job, Sammy. I'm proud of you."
They did more hauntings before Gabriel moved them to other creatures, each more difficult than the last. He repeated the pattern of doing the jobs first while Sam observed then he would have Sam do the hunt. And each time he praised his son for the job he did. At first, if a hunt went wrong, Gabriel would step in and complete it. Then he would heal any injuries Sam had, after which they would talk about the hunt. They would discuss what went wrong and how they could have done the hunt differently but Gabriel would always tell Sam that even the best prepared hunter had those hunts that went bad. Unknown variables, he said, were the hunter's worst enemy and no matter how much a hunter prepared and researched, it still could go bad. Sam nodded and soaked everything in. After a while, Sam would improvise on bad hunts to finish them. By the time they finally started to hunt demons, Sam was deadly.
Gabriel took Sam for a vacation to see Greece before going onto demons. They explored the ruins and tourist attractions, and then Gabriel took Sam to see some of the hidden treasures of Greece. He showed the teen the site of Cleopatra's family home, were Leonidas fought, and Plato's last home. He also took Sam to Mount Olympus to meet some of Gabriel's old friends. They had a wonderful time before they had to leave. Gabriel promised Sam that they would return to visit again.
Because he was aware that the demons knew about Sam, Gabriel needed to talk to his son about what he had done to save his life. It was very hard to do since he knew he may lose his son but it had to be done.
"Baby, I need to talk to you," Gabriel began. Sam sat down by his father to listen as Gabriel described how they first met, what Gabriel had done to Dean and that Sam had begged for his brother's life. Gabriel went on to tell about how he had found Sam on a corner selling himself and later high on heroin. Gabriel didn't hide anything, telling of his decision and how he looked down and decided to raise Sam instead of adopting him out. "I feel so blessed since you have been in my life. You are my son and I wouldn't have it any other way." He stopped and waited for the axe to fall.
Sam took a deep breath then smiled, "I've always known, daddy. The first visions I had were of what you told me but I'm glad you said something. I can't be mad that you saved my life and loved me so much that you raised me as your own. You are my father and I love you."
Gabriel's mouth dropped open. He hadn't expected this. He honestly thought Sam would have disappeared, never to be seen again. He thanked his Father for the miracle called Sam. Gathering the teen in his arms, he hugged him for a very long time. After they broke apart, Gabriel sat Sam down to start planning their next hunt.
A demon was killing people in a small town and Gabriel wanted to stop it before the demon did too much damage. Gabriel warned Sam that some higher level demons had the power to send Angels back to Heaven but there were sigils that could be used to keep them grounded on Earth. He also taught Sam about the various devil's traps, weaknesses that demons had to the name of God, weaknesses to Holy Water and salt. As was his nature, Sam asked many questions that Gabriel patiently answered. Gabriel was pleased with Sam's need to know since it actually kept his baby safe. Gabriel felt the more knowledge the boy had, the better prepared he would be.
Gabriel told Sam that while Angels can kill demons with a touch, it was to be used only on demons that were in hosts whose souls were gone since the touch will always kill the host body. Gabriel told him that there were ways for them to separate the demon from the host without doing that since demons could possess anyone including children and pregnant women. Sam learned of ancient exorcisms that worked every time. Gabriel described the fallen that they would run into and said that they would be very hard to exorcise and usually the host was sacrificed to kill the demon.
Following their pattern, Gabriel took the first hunt with Sam observing. The demon was a low level one who was easy to capture. He was very new as a demon but even he had heard of Sam Winchester and couldn't believe his eyes when he saw the Winchester in front of him, eating at the diner. When Winchester paid for his meal, the demon followed him out. It didn't matter that the human looked younger than he was supposed to be, the demon just figured he had been cursed or spelled. It would make killing him easier. Or so the demon thought.
Sam walked for a while before coming to a warehouse on the edge of the town and went in. The warehouse had been abandoned and the demon thought it would make a good place to finally kill him and take trophies to present to his boss for a reward. The demon was cautious and crept in the warehouse from a back door. He spotted Sam going into an office at the far end and carefully crossed the open space. When he got to the middle of the warehouse, he found he couldn't move. Glancing up, he saw a devil's trap had been painted on the ceiling. Screaming his rage, he tried to break the trap repeatedly until he heard a voice.
"You can't break that trap," said the voice. The demon looked around until he spotted the speaker. He was a slight man with golden hair and butterscotch eyes. The man was sucking on a lollipop and the demon sneered.
"You don't have the power to keep me here," the demon growled.
The strange man just laughed and then he asked, "Why were you following my friend?"
"There is a bounty on him and I intend to collect," the demon answered. "My boss wants his head on a platter for not killing Lilith."
"You mean the last seal to Lucifer's cage? Heard she got out of Hell. Where is she now?" the infuriating man asked.
"Back in Hell!" spat the demon. He didn't understand why he was answering the questions and he didn't like it.
"You are answering because I want you to," the man said, easily reading the demon's mind. "Who put Lilith back in the toy box?"
The demon struggled not to answer but after a minute, he gasped, "Dean Winchester exorcised her with the help of the Angel Castiel."
"Who put out the contract on Sam?" questioned the man.
Again, the demon struggled not to answer but it didn't do any good. The answer forced its way out of the demon, "Zachariah and my boss, Lilith."
Gabriel was startled. Zachariah had been working with Lilith to start the apocalypse by letting Lucifer out of the Cage. He felt bad that the host couldn't be saved but he didn't want the demon going back to Hell with any information about Sam. "Sammy," he called out to the teen. "You need to come out and hear what the demon is saying." Sam came out of the office to stand by Gabriel who made the demon repeat what he had said. After the demon was done, Gabriel said to Sam, "I'm sorry baby but this demon can't be allowed to go back to Hell. He would alert Lilith and Zachariah that you are still alive. Remember what I told you about protecting people?" Sam nodded. "This is the same thing. I want to protect you so I have to do something I'd rather not. Are you okay with that?"
Tears formed in Sam's eyes. He didn't want an innocent to die but He knew Gabriel would do anything to protect him. Hesitantly, he nodded then watched as Gabriel walked up to the demon and put his hand on it's head. White light flashed through the host's body while the demon died. Then the body dropped as the soul left the body. Sam watched as the soul was joined by a reaper who turned to the teen and said, "Don't worry, Sam. I'll take him Home where he will be safe and loved." Then the reaper turned to Gabriel. "This soul was being held captive by the demon. He was dying when the demon possessed him. You have freed him where I could not. Thank you." The reaper and soul disappeared, leaving father and son alone. To make sure nobody could ever call the soul back, Gabriel stretched his hand over the body and it caught on fire. When the flames died down, all that was left was ash. Not saying a word, Gabriel put his arm around his son and they went home.
There were no words to describe their agony. Angel came over and put her head on their laps, trying to make them feel good but it didn't help much. Gabriel kept his arm around Sam who put his head on Gabriel's shoulder. Tears leaked from his eyes as he thought he was the reason for that man dying.
"You are not to blame, Sammy. He was dying when he had become possessed," Gabriel murmured in comfort.
"Daddy, why did the demon think I was to blame for not killing Lilith? How was that bad?" Sam asked.
Gabriel sighed then explained about the seals and how the first was a righteous man shedding blood in Hell happened when his brother was there after selling his soul for Sam's life. He said the last one was Lilith who had been the first monster ever made. Lucifer's cage was to have been opened if sixty six seals were broken with Lilith's death the last one. Gabriel said that when Sam walked away from his old life, Dean had been able to derail the apocalypse by exorcising Lilith instead of Sam using demon powers to kill her. Gabriel then looked his son in the eyes and said, "You made a choice that ultimately kept billions of people alive and I couldn't be more proud of you. Dean may have sacrificed his life for you but you sacrificed your old life for the world.
"Now a whole bunch of demons and Angels are after you and Dean for your actions. They wanted to start the apocalypse and they're very mad that you stopped their plans in their tracks. We have to keep training since there are some people who are also in danger from those same ones who put that contract out on you."
"Did I choose wrong?" Sam wondered.
"No baby, I don't believe you did," Gabriel answered soothingly. He then stroked Sam's head until the teen fell asleep. He knew there would be more battles before they confronted Zachariah and he hoped Sam would come out unscathed.
Another deliver came in that morning with a note, "Will be there soon to help. There are weapons in one of the boxes for the humans. Keep the faith, G". In the fifth box Bobby opened there were individual swords wrapped in cloths that had Enochian sigils of hiding on them. Each sword had a name attached to it. Castiel explained that the better Angelic swords were actually bonded to their owners, never to be lost or stolen. Then he said that only a powerful being could put a charm on the swords to make them bond with humans.
A note accompanying them said that Castiel and Anna would have to teach the humans how to use the swords effectively and they had a month in which to do it in. The Angels saw a marking on the note that they said was from someone who had left Heaven a very long time ago but they wouldn't say who it was. They just said they trusted that being with their lives and the lives of their charges. Castiel took the note as Gospel and had Rufus, Ellen, Jo, Dean, and Bobby out doing katas and learning how to handle their swords. Missouri was taught by Anna who understood the medium's dislike for weapons. The ghosts also started to prepare for the assault by making Holy Oil Molotov Cocktails. Jim and Mary preferred to learn the Enochian chants and sigils that would send the Angels away. They also spent time drawing devil's traps all over the yard in case demons were fighting with the Angels. Caleb, John and Joshua found that they could form swords and, when they asked Castiel, found that these swords were formed from their souls. Castiel included them in the training, cautioning the spirits not to hit the humans as their swords would kill them.
Anna also trained the spirits to use their powers to knock over the towers of cars as well as move certain items that could be used by the humans. By the end of the month, they were as ready as possible. Now, they waited for G to come and help them.
Sam was now the same age he was when Gabriel found him laying on that filthy mattress and strung out. But this Sam was healthy, strong and confident. He was happier than he had been in his former life and his confidence in his gifts was astoundingly good without being overbearing. Gabriel was proud to call him son. Sam blushed every time his father said that but Gabriel maintained it was the truth. Privately, Gabriel was very pleased that Sam didn't have the self-esteem issues that he had when living with John and Dean.
After years of hunting, Gabriel finally told Sam they were needed to help Dean and the others before Zachariah could harm them. Sam was nervous but knew Gabriel wouldn't let the humans, souls, or Angels hurt him. Taking Angel in his arms, Sam flew after Gabriel only to land behind the house on the Salvage Yard. Years ago Gabriel had taken the precaution of adding a sigil to Bobby's yard that allowed him, his son and their dog to enter the protected area. Signaling Sam to put Angel down, Gabriel led the way to the front door.
Gabriel confidently knocked on the door then waited for someone to answer. He hoped it would be Anna or Castiel since Dean only knew him as the Trickster. When it did open, a dark-skinned woman looked out and smiled, probably for the first time in a very long time. "Boy, it took you three a long time to get here," she quipped. Gabriel laughed and Missouri joined in. Then she saw Sam trying to hide behind the smaller man and said, "I don't know if you remember me but I'm Missouri Mosley."
She put her hand out and Sam had no choice but to take it and say, "I'm Sam, ma'am. This is Angel." He pointed to the dog standing next to him.
"A pleasure to meet you all, come in, come in. We don't stand on ceremony here!" She grinned and led the trio into the living room where everyone had gathered. When they entered the room, everyone looked up and then there was a roar of voices. Scared, Sam ducked behind Gabriel while Angel started to growl.
"Boy! Where the hell have you been?"
"Sam! What the hell are you doing with the Trickster?"
"Gabriel, why did you leave us?"
Other voices were loud but Sam couldn't understand them. He was getting nervous and was within a second of sending everything flying. Gabriel, sensing his distress, turned around and gathered the young man in his arms. Softly singing to his son, Gabriel rocked Sam until he was calmer.
"Baby, remember what we talked about?" he asked Sam. Sam nodded all the while still nestled in Gabriel's neck. "These people are loud but they care about you. Don't be afraid of them, okay?"
Sam peeked out and saw the people staring at him and he ducked back into Gabriel's neck. "They're staring at me and feeling angry. Why dad? Did I do anything to them?" he whispered.
"Nothing Baby, you didn't do anything. Remember the visions you had when you were younger? You had been in so much pain, you needed help. I was there, remember?" Gabriel pleaded with the young man in his arms.
Sam nodded and took a deep breath. Gabriel was relieved. He knew Sam was rebuilding the walls around his empathy. Then he turned to the people in the room and said, "I would greatly appreciate it if you would stop scaring my son. You need to remain calm until he can rebuild his walls."
John got up and into Gabriel's face and asked with a growl, "What do you mean, your son? He's my son!"
"Winchester, get out of my face before I send you back to Hell," Gabriel growled back. Sam started to pull away and Gabriel just tightened his grip on his son. "If you will all be quiet and sit down, I'll tell you everything." With Sam still clinging to him, Gabriel told the whole story. How he found Sam, how he got him cleaned of the demon blood and how he de-aged Sam so he could learn to use the gifts he was born with. He did not, however, tell them how much Sam had changed. Before they got to Singer Salvage, Gabriel and Sam decided not to tell the humans everything but they were certain the Angels would finally figure it out.
Dean was itching to pull his brother down beside him and apologize for everything he said to drive him away but he didn't know if Sam would remember their last conversation. Before he could open his mouth, Castiel beat him to it, "Sam, there is something different about you," the Angel stated.
Anna stared hard at the young man then said, "You are different. Not just the absence of the demon blood but something more powerful, familiar."
"Daddy, I want to go somewhere else," Sam said in flawless Enochian.
"Baby, don't worry. I'll handle them," Gabriel answered the same way. Anna and Castiel's eyes widened. No human had ever learned Enochian as fluently since the time before Babel. Gabriel then turned to the other Angels and said in Enochian, "I do not want you to talk about his differences in front of the humans. I don't want you to ask him about them either. If you do, if you even upset my son, I will smite you."
Both Angels caught the word son. As they looked closer at Sam's back, they could see the outline of his wings…all six of them. "Brother, what happened?" Castiel asked, again in Enochian.
"It was when I cleaned him of the demon blood. I used my own blood when I was in my true form. Some of my Grace attached itself to my blood and entered Sam. I don't know why but I think that I had formed a bond with Sam from the first time I saw him," Gabriel also kept it in Enochian. He didn't want the humans to know.
Anna then asked, "Is it true? Does he really have six wings?"
"Like I said, he's my son," Gabriel answered.
"Does he have your powers?" Castiel wondered.
"Yes and he has been trained to use them," Gabriel said warningly.
Then Castiel went over to Sam who cringed further into his father. Castiel put his hand on the trembling fledgling and said, "Hello, nephew."
Anna also came closer. She was more nervous since she remembered how fledglings could sometimes lose control of their powers and if Sam is a fledgling Archangel, if he lashed out could be devastating. "Sam, welcome little nephew," She said formally.
It was Bobby's turn to cook and he decided to grill steaks. It was also a good time to try to wrap his head around what happened to Sam. On one hand, he was happy for the kid. Gabriel had told them that he had de-aged Sam so he could grow into his natural born gifts. Sam finally had a childhood he deserved but on the other hand that meant he really didn't remember his friends or family. That just hurt and Bobby didn't know what to do about it.
Then there was the strange moment in the living room where the Angels and Sam spoke in a language that Castiel later identified as Enochian. He had seen it written, hell most of the sigils around his place was in Enochian but he had never heard it spoken before. What bothered him was that they didn't translate for any human what had been said. Even after all of that, Gabriel was highly protective of Sam, closely watching anyone who got close to the boy.
Bobby also didn't miss the fact that Gabriel didn't go into particulars when it came to what Sam was actually doing when the Angel had found him. The Angel glossed over certain facts and Bobby didn't think he wanted to know. He also didn't miss that Dean was hurt when Sam flinched from everyone. Dean had been carrying a tremendous amount of guilt since Sam had disappeared, especially since he couldn't go out to search for him.
When John stood up to Gabriel about Sam being his son, the reaction Gabriel had was very interesting. It seemed to have been answered after Gabriel explained about de-aging Sam but Bobby felt there was more to the explanation than was given, at least to the humans. But the answer seemed to be glib with a lot of holes. To Bobby, the reaction that Gabriel had was more in the line that John should have had while Sam was growing up…that of a true father. When he thought it through, he found he didn't mind. Sam had a very hard childhood when growing up with John and, with Gabriel, he finally had a good one. One, Bobby was sure, was full of love, kindness and joy. What Sam actually deserved. The only thing he could have wished for was that Dean and he could have been part of that childhood. Shrugging, he came to the only conclusion he could: to become a family again, he would have to accept Sam as he was, just he did the first time around. For the first time in a long time, Bobby's heart was light.
Mary and Jess had a very long talk, well several in fact, about Sam and the kind of person he had grown to be. Some of what Mary heard made her proud but a lot angered her, especially when she found out that John had thrown Sam out just for wanting a different life from hunting. She had too, when she was his age and she wanted to achieve it by marrying the love of her life. If her father hadn't died, she was sure she would have had the same ultimatum thrown at her that Sam had. She was just happy that Sam had at least four years of normal before everything went in the toilet for him. Mary was very grateful to Jess for giving him that. Now the women were talking about how to get the brothers back together. They could see that Dean was suffering and didn't know what to do so they took things in their own hands.
Jess approached Sam about going for a walk while Mary did the same for Dean. They made sure that Gabriel was in the loop since they were aware of his protective streak when it came to Sam, his son. At first, Dean didn't want to walk with his mother so she ended up putting her foot down and, like a good son, he acquiesced to her wishes. She had it easy. When Jess came near Sam, he kept disappearing on her until she finally cornered him. Blushing deep red, he stuttered okay to her request. She took his hand and led him to the tree where the boys used to have a tire swing. Mary was there with Dean, listening as he told stories of his childhood when Jess came up with Sam.
"Sam!" Dean exclaimed. "What are you doing here?"
"Um…you see…Jessica wanted…a…walk," Sam stammered out.
Before either of them could get away, Mary said, "You two were very close before Sam disappeared. Jessica and I discussed it and we decided that the two of you need to get to know each other again. You are brothers and nothing will ever change that. Dean, when Sam was born, what did I say to you?"
Dean said, "You told me to take care of my brother."
"That's right. Even if Sam is different, he is still your brother. Sam," she said turning towards him, "You are stronger in many ways than your brother. I give him to you to protect like I gave you to him to protect. Do you understand?"
Sam ducked his head and nodded, "Yes, ma'am."
"Not ma'am, Mom. I'm still your mother, baby, no matter what had happened. Okay?" Mary said with finality.
Sam couldn't get any redder when he nodded, "Mom," he repeated.
"Good, now that we got that out of the way, you and Dean need to talk to each other and re-establish your bond. And Sam, tell your brother everything. I talked to Gabriel and he agreed that your brother needs to know. He won't hate you, baby. He may be shocked but he won't hate you, will you Dean?"
"God, no Sam! I could never hate you! I love you, brother," Dean exclaimed.
Under the watchful eyes of the two women, the brothers started to talk. "Um, Gabriel said you had gifts. What kind, Sammy?" Dean asked.
"Daddy said I was born with telekinesis, telepathy, empathy, and the ability to have visions. I also have pyrokinesis, healing abilities, the power to pull demons out of their hosts, the power to kill demons, the power to fly…" Sam said before Dean interrupted.
"Wait, flying? Really?" Dean asked.
"Sam, you need to show him so he can understand," Jess said softly.
Ducking his head shyly, Sam slowly let his wings be seen by Dean. Dean's eyes got large as he realized his brother was an Angel.
"What…what happened, Sammy?" Dean gasped.
"When Daddy saved me, he gave me some of his blood when he was in his true form," Sam said. "Some of his Grace attached itself to the blood and it entered me. It attached itself to my soul, healing it then it grew as I did. It's a part of me, now. Permanently." He stared down at the ground waiting for the blow-up he could feel building around Dean. What happened next totally surprised him. Dean, seeing how distressed his brother was, gathered Sam in his arms and held him like he saw Gabriel had done. Softly, he sang under his breath to calm his baby brother.
After a while, Dean pulled back and said, "Sammy, you are my brother, no matter what and I love you. I feel guilty that I told you never to come back. I didn't mean it. I was so pissed about Ruby, the demon blood and the secrets but I could never hate you. I'm so sorry. Can you ever forgive me?"
Sam was confused. He honestly didn't remember anything that Dean was talking about but his senses told him that it was important for Dean that he forgive him so he said, "Of course, Dean. Why wouldn't I?"
Dean started to do something he hadn't in a very long time. Not even the death of his father could pull them from him, just his brother could. He cried, heavily. Sam did the only thing that he could, he wrapped his arms and wings around Dean. He held him for a very long time and as he did, a glow started to show around them as they healed.
Everyone started to get to know the new Sam and Gabriel. They were aware of his gifts, only his birth gifts, though since Dean agreed with Gabriel that some of his friends may not like them. Dean was especially worried about John's reaction, not so much the others. Already, Bobby and Pastor Jim were teaching Sam about other creatures and enjoying talking to him about the knowledge he had regarding some of the exorcisms that Sam had learned. Pamela, Jo and Ellen found the young hunter was funny and caring while Rufus' heart was once again stolen by him. Rufus would never admit how much Sam had meant to him as family but Bobby guessed it after watching Rufus laugh at something Sam did. Joshua, Ash and Caleb also found Sam to be lighter, freer than during his first childhood and they were happy for the young man. None of them agreed with the way John had raised the boys, because of his vendetta neither of the boys had a good childhood, Sam more than Dean.
John was perplexed. He could sense there was something very different and powerful about Sam. It set off all his hunter senses but he couldn't figure it out. He watched as Dean and Sam played with
Angel. He noticed how careful Sam was when the boys were sparring as if he was worried about hurting Dean which was impossible. Every time before when they sparred, Dean always came out on top. John watched even carefully every move Sam made. Castiel noticed the hunter's attitude and warned Gabriel they may have a problem with John.
Gabriel made an interesting suggestion to both Dean and Castiel. Since the human would be killed if Sam sparred to the most of his ability, Gabriel suggested that Castiel spar with the fledgling. But first, Dean would have to take the first round with Sam pulling back. Then Castiel would step in to give him a real workout with everyone watching. It would be to show what Angels could do and what to avoid. After which, the living humans would be paired up with an Angel, Sam included, to work out evasion plans so they didn't get hit or if they did, it wouldn't be lethal.
The next afternoon, Dean and Sam began to spar like usual. Like he had done before, Sam pulled his punches and kicks so he wouldn't hurt his brother. John was watching and became angry since he could see that Sam was dodging more than he was hitting.
"C'mon Sam, you can do better than that! You left yourself open to be hit! I didn't teach you to be prissy about being hit!" yelled John. That was the sign Gabriel and Castiel were waiting for.
"Sammy, why don't you spar with Cassie?" Gabriel suggested innocently.
Sam nodded then Dean eagerly walked off the field. He really wanted to see what his brother was capable of since he had seen Castiel fight once. Castiel shed his trench coat and suit coat then walked out to where Sam waited. The Angel took in the fledgling and wondered how much Sam could take. He knew that most fledglings were weaker than adult Angels but since Sam was an Archangel fledgling, first one born after Castiel, he was an enigma. They started slowly, testing their strengths by putting their forearms together and pushing. Castiel's eyes went wide as he realized that Sam's strength was equal or better than his own. And Sam was still considered a fledgling!
Breaking apart, they backed up then ran towards each other. Castiel went for an upper cut while Sam danced around the punch going for a jab to the back. Castiel stumbled before turning around swiftly with a round kick in the making. Again, Sam was able to avoid the kick while sweeping his own long leg to take out Castiel's base, causing the Angel to fall. Cas bounced back on his legs in a lightening reflex then the battle was truly on.
While the two sparred, they started to get spectators. Anna, Bobby, Rufus, the Harvelles and the spirits all came to watch, and place bets. Most bet on Castiel to win since he was the experienced fighter and an Angel to boot. Dean, Gabriel, Mary and Jess bet on Sam, knowing his secret. John watched his son with his mouth open as Sam proceeded to put Castiel in the ground, through a stack of cars, and through a couple of walls where the Angel had put Sam in the ground a couple of times but couldn't beat the speed of the fledgling.
Anna finally called a halt to the sparring then turned to the humans, "Now, you know what you are up against when fighting one-on-one, hand to hand with an Angel. We are faster and stronger than a human. It also depends on the rank of an Angel. A Warrior Angel is stronger than a Cupid. Those of the First and Second Circles are stronger than Archangels who are stronger than the ordinary rank and file. Zachariah is stronger than a Cupid but isn't stronger than either myself or Castiel, he definitely isn't stronger than Gabriel.
"Our intelligence tells us he has been recruiting from the Warrior class which means we are going to have the advantage with Gabriel on our side."
John cleared his throat and asked the question that was top of his mind, "You said that Castiel is a Warrior Angel but Sam beat him. Um…what does that make Sam?"
Anna looked at Gabriel who nodded. It was time to tell Sam's secret. "Sam is what we call a fledgling but a very strong and powerful one since he is also an Archangel…"
A very loud noise broke out from the ones who weren't in on the secret, especially John.
"How the HELL did that happen? I mean, I knew about the demon blood but how did SAM turn into an Archangel of all things?" yelled John.
Sam took off before anyone could say anything to him and Gabriel gave John a scathing look. "Sam became my son when I gave him some of my blood to counteract the demon blood. What I didn't know was that some of my Grace attached itself to that amount of blood. It then grafted itself to Sam's soul and has been growing there ever since he was a baby of one day old. The age I de-aged him to so he could grow into his natural gifts. He is not evil, Winchester. He is unique, a human Archangel and I'll be…well you know if I let you hurt my son anymore. Zachariah isn't the only one who can send someone back to Hell. I can do it even faster," Gabriel warned. He stepped closer to John then said, "You are skating on thin ice. I haven't forgiven you for the way you raised your sons. You had been abusive, neglectful and merciless when it came to finding your wife's killer and it cost the only two people in your life who should have been more important to you than your own life. Sam had no self-esteem when I found him. He hated himself and most of that can be laid on your shoulders!"
Dean, afraid that Gabriel would act on his impulse, got between spirit and angry Archangel. Looking pleadingly at Gabriel, he silently asked him not to do anything rash. Gabriel nodded. He didn't want to hurt Dean and sending John back to Hell would do just that so he turned and went to look for Sam.
"Dad, you don't know what we've been through since you died! How much Sam has gone through since I died, going to hell for him so he could live. He had so much guilt in him but now, with this rebirth, he is the brother, the son he should have been and you can't handle it? If you mess with my baby brother again, Gabriel's going to have help sending you back! You understand?" Dean yelled, and then he turned his back on his astounded father and went to look for Sam. John looked around. Bobby was suspiciously looking around while Jim, Rufus, Caleb and Joshua grinned.
"I can't believe you did that to our babies!" Mary finally shouted. "I trusted you to raise them and love them but you didn't! You turned them into soldiers to hunt for the demon? You turned your baby out when he wanted a different life? I fought with my father to get out of that life and the only way I could have done that was to marry you but the demon killed him before that happened. How could you!" She disappeared, leaving a heartbroken John in her wake.
"What have I done?" John thought brokenly, tears falling down his cheeks. "What did I do to my babies?"
It took a couple of hours before Dean found Gabriel and Sam. They were on the furthest corner of Bobby's property and it looked as though Gabriel was trying to talk Sam into staying. Dean's heart raced as the thought of Sam leaving forever pierced him. He ran to the pair and wrapped his arms around his brother, "Please Sammy, don't go! Please don't leave me again!" Dean cried.
Sam looked at the man holding him then back at Gabriel, "It's your choice, baby," the Archangel said softly. "But, honestly, there are more people here who love you for you. Not for what you are. Dean could have reacted just like John when he first found out but he didn't. He accepted you and everything about you."
"Will you stay with me?" Sam implored Gabriel. "I don't want you to leave me alone, daddy."
"I'll always be with you. You are my son, how can I leave you," Gabriel answered.
"Will Dean be your son too?" Sam pulled out the puppy dog eyes he knew his father could never resist.
Gabriel knew what was going on but he still couldn't say no to his son. Never could, "Yes, baby. He can be my son too, if he wants."
Dean couldn't believe his ears. Not only was Sam going to stay with him but Gabriel agreed to adopt him. After that last separation, Dean understood that his life was not complete without his brother in it so he took a deep breath and said, "Yes, I want." Gabriel and Sam smiled. Their family was complete.
The bond the brothers had, the one that Zachariah and many others had said was unhealthy and too close hummed with life as the Grace Sam had gotten from Gabriel split off a bit of itself once again and traveled to Dean. The same glow that had once enveloped Gabriel and the infant Sam now enveloped Dean as he became the next human Archangel. When the glow subsided, Gabriel gathered his new son in his arms in welcome. Sam also hugged his brother, completing the bond between father and sons.
John was in agony. He had done it again, let his mouth run when he should have thought first. Sam as an Angel should have been wonderful. After all of John's worries about the demon blood, he should have rejoiced but instead he yelled and condemned. Gabriel would have been correct in sending him back to Hell with Dean and Mary helping the Archangel. John was so ashamed of himself, that he stayed invisible. He didn't want to inflict his presence on the others, ruining their moods before the big battle.
He drifted around, not really paying attention to where he was until he heard a voice that said, "I feel you here, Dad. Please let me see you." John looked around and saw his youngest sitting in a tree. At first his instinct was to just walk away but the pleading tone in his son's voice got to him and he did what Sam wanted, he became visible.
Sam jumped down and sat on the ground. He patted the earth, silently asking John to sit next to him. John lowered himself and listened as Sam began to speak, "When I was about two, I began to have visions about a different life, one where it sometimes hurt to breathe but, while I may have been miserable, I was safe. I remember very little of that life except for one thing: no matter what was said or done, you loved me in your own way. I don't understand why you think of me as evil or bad. I don't know what I ever did for you to shut me out like you did. I dreamt that you had always been disappointed that I wasn't like you or Dean. I liked learning things and being part of a normal family. You liked the hunt, it was a part of you that I could never be. I remember dreaming that I wished you would be proud of me but I never got that.
"I know I'll never be what you wanted me to be but that's okay. It's also okay that you'll never be proud of me or even like me for who and what I am. But I just want you to know that I've always loved you and have forgiven you for everything. I guess we sort of let each other down. I just hope you can forgive me. I don't want you to be mad at me either." With that said, Sam made a move to get up but John put his hand on the young man's arm.
"Sammy, I am so sorry for everything. I should have made a home for the two of you, made you and Dean my first, second and third priorities. I should have told you how proud of you I was with each A you brought home and when you got into Stanford, I was flying so high but I was also so very scared. I had just found out a couple of years before that the demon who had killed your mother had tainted you and wanted you for something that at the time I didn't know about. I wanted to protect you but you were stubborn and wanted a life. Because I was so scared, my mouth ran away with me and I said some pretty unforgiveable things. I just hope you will forgive me."
Sam looked at the man he had been born to the first time and smiled, "I can't ever hold a grudge against anyone. You know I'm the luckiest person on this planet; I have had five fathers in my life who loved me. The first was you, then Dean, Bobby, Jim, and now Gabriel. I've been blessed ever since Azazel tried to break our family up. Mom, Ellen and Missouri have been mother-henning me ever since we got here so I guess now I have three moms, four if you also count Dean!"
John laughed. He felt light-hearted and wonderful since they started to talk. Then he asked Sam, "Do you think your dad would teach me how to be a better father to you and Dean?"
Sam's eyes twinkled as he nodded, "Definitely!"
The two got up and walked sedately towards the house. John asked questions about Sam's new life and was delighted with the answers his son gave him. When they entered the house, they were so engrossed in their conversation that they didn't notice the crowded house become silent. Dean and Gabriel just smiled, it was a dream come true for the two of them. Mary's eyes became shiny with tears when she noticed how healed her son and husband were.
The next few days brought a frenzy of training with the Angels. Gabriel took it on himself to train the newest fledgling while the other three trained the hunters. Gabriel warned Sam to be careful when training Rufus but the older hunter was game for the rougher sport. Bobby trained with Castiel since he knew that Angel the best and trusted him while Anna trained the Harvelle women. Gabriel told the Angels to remember to make the training fun, like they would teach any fledgling. He said it would increase their learning curve and even their desire to learn.
The spirits also asked for Angelic training and got it. Since they were more resilient, the workouts were even more intense but Gabriel did warn them that Angels could send souls on with just a touch. When Jim asked if there was anything he could do about it, Gabriel snapped up some charms that he said would help with that problem. He had gotten them from a reaper, he said. The souls were very grateful and put the charms on promptly.
Gabriel stuck around John when dealing with the boys. John honestly wanted to learn how to be a better father and Gabriel was willing to teach him. The hardest part, though, was to keep his tongue and temper under control but the Angel was able to give him some pointers on those points. Mary decided to also be in on John's parenting classes and she taught him how to be patient with their sons and, with Gabriel's help, how to rejoice in their gifts. When John found out that Dean was also now considered a fledgling, he handled it better than when he found out about Sam. He also found out that Dean was now considered Gabriel's son by the other Angels but Gabriel also made it clear that John was to be given parental respect by all in the house.
Gabriel's family expanded to include everyone on the property because, like Dean had said, they were family to the boys when they were growing up. Gabriel didn't have the heart to turn anyone away, unlike when he was the Trickster. Sam being in his life had made it richer and more blessed.
It was time. Zachariah had started to slaughter anyone who even glimpsed the boys when they were hunting and the reapers had let the Angels know what was going on. Death, himself, was getting very angry at the upstart and had sent some weapons the souls could use. In thanks for Death's help, the
Angels prayed to their Father that He release Death's bond from Lucifer. Death thanked them for their prayers. The prayers had been heard and answered, Death was no longer bound. One of Zachariah's weapons had been disabled with those prayers.
The reapers also started to visit people in their dreams to send them to safety at Bobby's place. The first to arrive were the souls of Kate Milligan and her son, Adam. John had a hard time explaining to the boys about the half-brother they never knew about but Mary was very understanding saying only she wished he had married the woman so he and the boys could have had a proper family. Cassie and her family were next, then Lisa and Ben. Amelia and Claire also were directed to the Salvage Yard, as was Sarah and her father. So many noncombatants were now living at the Yard that Gabriel and Sam sent them to their home. It was just safer there for them.
The next thing Zachariah did was to start a siege around the Yard, not knowing that there was an Archangel and his two fledglings on the property. They were able to keep the supplies up so the siege wasn't such a hardship but the mental strain started to show, tempers started to fray.
At the first sign, Gabriel started to set up his defenses and offenses. He had Dean count the enemy and take note of their position. He also taught Dean how to tell what type of Angel was out there. Then Dean scouted the perimeter. He found that Zachariah had ten Warrior Angels with him and about eight demons. When he reported back to the group, they were astounded. "A bit of overkill," Gabriel joked before he got down to strategy. "I wasn't part of the war," he said, "but being Dad's messenger, I saw and absorbed a lot of battle plans. I also got to know Tsun Tzu real well after I left Home so I have a few ideas. One is that we need to get behind Zachariah's people and the other is that we need to get those demons out of there.
"Sammy, I want you to teach Jim, Missouri and Pamela those exorcisms we've been using. No matter what kind of charm or sigil the demons will have on themselves, these exorcisms will work. Got them from Metatron himself," Sam nodded and took the group named out to the kitchen. "John, I want you, Bobby, and Rufus to go to the North side of the property and spread out. Wait for my signal before you attack. Dean's intelligence tells me that there are at least four Angels out there and they are the Warrior Class." John nodded and took his group out the door. "Anna, you, Caleb, and Mary will take the South. There are at least three of them there. Wait for the signal." Anna nodded then she and the other two left. "Cas, you, Joshua, Jo and Ellen will take the East. There are three there. Good luck, little brother." That group left then Gabriel turned to Ash and Dean. "Ash, I want you to keep close to the house. Not that you aren't a good fighter but I need someone to protect our 'exorcists'. Dean, Sammy and I are going after Zachariah and his two idiots. I know Dean only counted ten but I also know Zachariah and he never goes anywhere without his 'bodyguards'."
Gabriel used his powers to ground the Angels and mute their powers. He didn't want them to have more of an advantage than their strength and speed. That he couldn't do, it was physical. When he was
sure everything was in place, he dropped the sigils and the fighting was on. John, being a spirit, was the distraction Rufus and Bobby needed to sneak up on two of the four Angels on the North side. They successfully stabbed them before the other two rushed up to kill the humans. Because the Angels didn't realize John was also armed with a sword of his own and a charm, he was able to engage them before they did any real damage to the humans. He killed the one going after Rufus then he and Rufus went after the final Angel. When they were done, the two humans and spirit rushed to help Anna and her crew.
When they got there, Anna had killed one and was helping Mary with another but Caleb was having some trouble with his. John got behind that one and stabbed him before he could bring his own sword down in Caleb's stomach. Rufus and Bobby watched as the females killed the third. Caleb was badly wounded while Bobby's wound was dripping blood. Anna took some time to heal them before they all went to help Castiel and his squad.
They were needed. Castiel killed his opponent after a fierce fight but the Harvelle women and Joshua were having a lot of problems with theirs. Jo was on the ground with Ellen standing above her while Joshua had a nasty gash on his back. He may have been a spirit but Angelic blades hurt! Anna directed Cas to help the women while she went after the one on top of Joshua. Bobby and Rufus went to help Cas while Mary and John got Joshua out of the way. Quickly, the other two Angels were dispatched. Anna then healed all the hurts, including Joshua after which the enlarged group moved quickly towards the house. Gabriel made it quite clear they were to stay away from the fighting with Zachariah.
Zachariah couldn't believe what was happening. First, the demons were all exorcised then he found that he and his compatriots had been grounded and rendered powerless. He was tearing what little hair his vessel had out. Then, one by one, his Angelic force was being eliminated by Humans and Spirits of all things. He had thought he would lose a couple of his Angels with Castiel and Anna fighting for Team Winchester but the deaths that had been accomplished was staggering.
Zachariah's eyes were blazing with anger when the Winchesters walked up. The two who had single-handedly stopped the plans for the apocalypse. "Well, well, well. Look who's walking to their deaths," he crowed. "Before, I would have been merciful but now, I'm vengeful." He motioned to his two bodyguards to hold the boys while he walked towards them with his sword out. Before he was in striking distance, he found he couldn't move.
"Hi, Zachy! How're you doing?" asked a voice that sounded like someone he knew but was now dead. Zachariah looked around and saw a slight man with golden hair and butterscotch eyes.
"G...G...Gabriel?" Zachariah stuttered. "I always knew you were smart. But now I have a question for you. What in hells are you doing to my sons?" Gabriel asked with a smirk.
"What do you mean? These two mud-monkeys stopped the apocalypse. We were supposed to have the apocalypse with these two as vessels for our brothers!" Zachariah yelled the last bit. Then he sobered, thinking of the words Gabriel had said. "What do you mean, your sons?" he asked with trepidation.
"Boys," was all Gabriel said. He watched as the two Angels holding the Winchesters went flying. Zachariah's eyes got big when Sam and Dean showed exactly what Gabriel meant, they unfurled their wings and brought out their swords.
"You heard me, Zachy, my sons. You have tried to kill my children and I won't stand for it," Gabriel said, shedding his human form. Standing in front of the quailing Angel, he said quietly, "Dad has always put a great value on free will and you decided that when my boys used theirs, they were in the wrong and should be sent to Hell. You had teamed up with demons to bring the apocalypse without Dad's permission and you thought that was going to be okay? Did you think you would get away with that? You put yourself in Dad's place and I can tell you He isn't happy.
"I always wondered why Sam and Dean became my sons and I think I know why. It was a reward for their circumventing what you tried to start. Zachariah, you will be taking Dean's place in Hell, where you had made sure he would go when he made that deal for his brother's life," Gabriel put his hand out and, in a flash of light, Zachariah disappeared. Then he turned to the other two Angels and said, "You need to go Home and pray for redemption. You followed Zachariah's orders without a question and Dad isn't pleased with you," Gabriel snapped his fingers and the other Angels disappeared.
Gabriel sighed and put his human form back on. His sons pulled their wings back in and ran to their father when he opened his arms to them. "It's done, babies. He'll never bother you again," the Archangel cooed to his children. Feeling the shivers that ran through both sons, he started to sing softly to calm them down.
The boys knew the demons would still be after them, thanks to the contract on their lives. Gabriel suggested they keep hunting but he would go with them since Dean still had training to do to learn how to use his new gifts. Bobby offered his house to the family which was taken up gladly. John and Mary felt sad since they would be going back Home but then a reaper named Tessa had told them that anytime they wanted to visit, she would bring them back. It was not the norm, she said, but Death wanted to reward them for their actions.
The Harvelles, Rufus and Missouri went back to their homes but promised to visit frequently. Rufus had found a house in Sioux Falls which he bought so he could be closer to the boys and his best friend. The rest of those who came to the Salvage Yard for safety had gone back to their lives and afterlives. Sam and Dean still had great memories of watching John turn red when Kate and Mary got together to gossip about him. Adam joined the boys in their laughter. It was over a bit too quick for the brothers
before Adam went back Home. Sam and Dean wished they had been able to get to know the real Adam, not the ghoul who had killed him and taken his place. Gabriel promised that they would keep in touch through Angel-mail, meaning that Castiel had agreed to carry letters between the brothers.
Gabriel increased the training he put the boys through. It wasn't just that the demons were after them but there was something wrong in Heaven. He knew that Zachariah had some pretty big backing to be able to start the apocalypse. Anna told him that since their Father had left Heaven, morale had dropped among the Angels. Castiel reported that many Angels wanted to start the End of Days to get their Father back. Gabriel asked, "Don't they remember His words? How He is in everyone and everything. If you just sit back, close your eyes, and relax, you can feel Him. He never left but those bozos are jealous because He is down here and not bodily up there. Dad is where He is needed most."
Gabriel was seething but knew that he would need help cleaning up the mess he stumbled into when he found Sam on his knees in that very distant alley. He asked Anna and Castiel to approach some of their brothers and sisters he knew were loyal only to their Father. The news he asked them to carry was two-fold. One was that he was back and willing to work with them to get Heaven back on track with God's will and the other was about his sons, the only human Archangels in existence. Gabriel told them to let the others know to meet him at the Salvage Yard since it was the most heavily protected place on Earth.
Soon Bobby's Yard was filled with Angels of all ranks. Even Metatron made it, he rarely left Heaven and Joshua, the keeper of the Garden. All of the Dominion decided they, too, were extremely upset with the almost apocalypse and the corruption that was going on. Surprisingly, all of the Angels were okay with Gabriel's sons. They knew that it wasn't an accident that Gabriel's Grace broke off a bit of itself and grafted to Sam's soul. It wasn't an accident that that same Grace also transferred part of itself to Dean through the brothers' bond. They were meant to be human Archangels, it was determined.
Balthazar, another runaway Angel, had the keys to a storage room of Angelic weapons that he offered to the group. He found his calling and renewed faith. Castiel loved having his brother back by his side and introduced him to the boys. The four of them kept the others in stitches with their antics but when it came to planning and training, they were all business.
Michael also joined the group, after much soul-searching. He had been sucked into Zachariah's plan because he was heartbroken when his Father had left. He had hoped that the news of the apocalypse would have brought God back but when that didn't happen, he became more depressed and allowed the plans to carry through thinking that it would have been better if nobody lived. Raphael also joined the group. His reasonings were the same as Michael and he welcomed into the group with open arms. After talking to Gabriel, they agreed that Heaven needed to be put back on track and with their knowledge, specific targets were identified.
Joshua made sure that the souls in Heaven were protected so they couldn't be used in the war. Many hunters, including John and Mary came forward to help guard their borders and Joshua gladly took them up on their offer. John took control of the guards since he had already been in a battle with Angels and trained the other hunters. Ash used his computers to listen in on the other side, giving the information to Joshua so he could pass it on to his brothers. Mary, Pamela, Jim, Ash, Caleb and the human Joshua helped train the other hunters. With the information given to them, they were able to establish an effective guard around the heavens of the deceased. John was pleased to find out that hunters, no matter when they were born, were still hunters at heart. John had a tremendous pool to choose from since hunters went back to before Babel when the Nephilim were the first to be born.
One thing Ash found out was that Zachariah's bodyguards ran straight to an Angel named Virgil who was one of the instigators of the apocalypse. Virgil was in an absolute rage. It seemed as though someone had snuck into the armory and made off with the extremely important weapons in Heaven. Balthazar smiled smugly when Gabriel reported that to the group. Ash was also able to report that even though a couple of the Garrisons had joined Virgil, all of the upper Circles had declared themselves for God. Nothing Virgil could do or say would change their minds. Even the Cupids hid from Virgil's side saying that they were lovers not fighters.
Finally, Gabriel's side was ready. Michael took command and led the attack on Virgil and his compatriots. The fighting was bloody with both sides losing Angels but when the dust was settled, Michael and his brothers stood triumphant. Virgil and those who fought with him were cast down to Hell, never to see Heaven again. After the battle, Gabriel looked for his sons only to find they had been struck down by Virgil himself. Castiel reported to the grieving father that they stood side by side and fought with all the power they had. Dean, seeing that Sam was going to be stabbed with Virgil's sword, thrust his brother out of the way and took the strike himself. Sam, upon seeing that his brother was dying, attacked Virgil with a ferocity that took the Angel by surprise but Virgil used a weapon from the armory and killed Sam.
Gabriel was inconsolable. He had found he loved being a father and now his children lay dead, bloody on a battlefield. Michael and Raphael quietly extended their Graces to help their younger brother but all it did was quiet his sobs. Then Metatron came over and looked at the boys. He cocked his head as if listening to something before he put his hands on Sam and Dean's heads. Concentrating hard with his eyes closed, he didn't see the glow that emitted from his hands to envelope the boys. Finally, when he withdrew his hands, the glow subsided and everyone could see that the wounds on the boys' bodies had been healed. Then Dean took a breath. He opened his eyes and looked at his brother.
"C'mon, Sammy, open those beautiful eyes of yours," he begged his brother. Sam finally took a breath and woke up. Before they knew it, they had the arms and wings of Gabriel wrapped around them. Gabriel thanked his Father for the miracle that was his sons. With tears in his eyes, he looked at his brothers who nodded their understanding. Then Gabriel took his sons back to Bobby's.
Gabriel was watching his sons and Castiel play in the field with Angel behind Bobby's Yard. It was hard to think of how close he came to losing the boys and it always hurt his heart when he did. He was very happy to have reconnected with Heaven and his brothers but his children were very special to him. Michael and Raphael took interest in their nephews. They would come down to teach them many tricks they had learned over the millennium. The two uncles found that the boys were eager and very quick to learn, making it fun to teach them.
Metatron told Gabriel that God had wanted the boys to live. He wanted them to be human Archangels, to protect humanity from demons and other supernatural creatures. Gabriel was to stay with them but he also could visit Heaven any time he wanted, the boys were also welcome for visits. Castiel decided to stay with the boys. The bond he had with Dean intensified and included Sam. Now the three of them were almost inseparable.
Gabriel smiled. For the first time in centuries, he wasn't lonely.
One of my split personalities is a bit wordy...Lady Elizabeth is a big fan of Shakespear! A huge thank you to my beta Daiyu Amaya.