Final chapter! This is a short, epilogue type thing, so sorry it's not very long. Thank you so much to all of you who followed, favorited, and especially reviewed! I wasn't expecting such a huge response for such a short story. I really appreciate your support and feedback, so thank you so much.
OVERALL DISCLAIMER (which I keep forgetting): I do not own Supernatural or any characters within.
CHAPTER WARNINGS: mentions of violence and torture, me attempting to write a hospital scene, language, slash
John's shoulder connected hard with the scrubbed white tile. He grunted and curled up slightly, wincing in pain. He automatically squeezed his eyes shut against the suddenly bright lights assaulting his eyes.
"Cas? Cas!" John distantly heard Sam's voice hoarsely calling the angel's name. He rubbed his eyes and pushed himself up, blinking hard as his eyes adjusted to the fluorescent lighting. He glanced around and was slightly relieved when he saw he was in a hospital waiting room. They were out of danger for now. The other people occupying the space looked slightly miffed at the sudden appearance of the men sprawled on the floor, but not overly concerned. John figured they had their own problems to worry about.
John grimaced when Sam called out for Castiel again. Sam was curled up in a ball as tightly as his tall frame would allow, as if he was trying to protect himself. As John watched, his struggled to uncurl and rise to his feet, but he could barely kneel without faltering and listing to the side. He froze when he caught sight of Dean, unconscious on the floor next to him. "Dean…"
Sam was down on his knees again in seconds flat, reaching to roll his big brother onto his side. He brushed at Dean's face and shoulders with shaking hands, as if he was afraid Dean would break if he touched him for too long. "Dean, man, wake up. C'mon, Dean, please…"
"Sir, please move out of the way for a second," Sam was suddenly being pulled away from Dean by two sets of strong hands. He fought against them weakly, but found himself being dragged to the other side of the waiting room pathetically easily. He watched helplessly as Dean was lifted onto a gurney and wheeled away by a group of frantic looking nurses. He didn't understand what they were saying, but he could tell by their faces that it wasn't anything good.
Sam glanced around the room. He saw his dad and Bobby sitting up and looking around, dazed, but otherwise unharmed. His stomach dropped when he realized Cas wasn't there. He started struggling against the two nurses holding him back, desperate to get away and search for Cas, to find Cas because Cas had found him, Cas had saved him when no one else had thought he could be saved… "Cas. I have to find him, I have to see him…"
"We'll let you find him in a minute," the nurses exchanged a glance. They started to guide Sam towards the doors to the emergency room. "You should just let the doctor check you over."
"I don't need a doctor!" Sam snapped, yanking his arm out of one of the nurse's grips. "I have to find him, you don't understand—"
"Calm down," the nurse who'd managed to keep a grip on Sam put a hand on his chest and tried to turn him back towards the emergency room doors. "What's your name?"
"What?" Sam gave the guy an odd look and shook his head, trying to get away from him. "I don't have time for this. Let me—"
"Sam, listen to me," John's voice stopped Sam in his tracks. He rose to his feet and moved to stand in front of Sam. He met Sam's gaze steadily and when he spoke, his voice was laced with mildly threatening anger. "Stop. Go with them and get patched up. Dean is hurt, and you need to stop being dramatic. We can worry about Castiel once we make sure Dean is okay."
Sam ducked his head and nodded reluctantly. Shame, guilt, and anger warred in his chest at his father's words. Of course he was worried about Dean; it wasn't fair of Dad to accuse him of not caring. The bottom of Sam's stomach grew cold when he realized that, for a moment, his panic about Cas's safety had eclipsed his panic for his brother's. He swallowed hard, feeling slightly sick, and decided he was too tired to think too hard about that right then.
Instead, he allowed the nurses to lead him through the heavy metal doors into the emergency room, his chest tight and his knees shaking.
Bobby hunched over in an uncomfortable plastic chair in the small waiting room outside the operating room. He hadn't seen a doctor go in or come out in three hours, and he was starting to get worried. He didn't let it show, for Sam's sake. The kid looked ready to fall apart.
Sam's knee bounced up and down and he tugged at the hem of the clean scrub they'd given him to replace his shredded clothing. His right arm was in a sling, and a few of his fingers were splinted. The small cuts on his face, neck, and arms had been cleaned and covered with bits of sticking plaster, and the deeper gashes had been neatly stitched up. His hair was damp from when a nurse had washed the blood out of it, and it fell into his eyes in wet tangles. Bobby watched his hands open and close into fists; he balled his hands up so tightly Bobby was concerned Sam would split open the scabs on his knuckles.
"Relax, Sam," Bobby finally spoke up gruffly, reaching out to smack Sam's hands when he started to pick at the scabs over his knuckles. "Relax. The doctor will be out the minute they know something."
Sam nodded and but his lip. He ducked his head so his hair hid his eyes. Bobby watched him worry his bottom lip between his fingers. He still looked troubled and shaky. When it hit Bobby, he felt like an idiot for not realizing it before; Sam still hadn't heard from Cas.
Bobby sighed and squeezed Sam's knee in an uncharacteristic gesture of sympathy. "He's tough."
Sam noted the slight softening in Bobby's voice and glanced up at him, surprised. He wasn't sure if Bobby was talking about Dean or Cas. Bobby wasn't looking at him anymore, though; he'd turned his attention to John, who was hunched over on a bench along the opposite wall. Sam's eyes immediately flickered back to the floor. He rubbed his hands up and down the cold skin on his upper arms.
Sam cleared his throat and opened his mouth, resolved to say something to his dad; to ask how he was, to ask for the time, anything. He felt young and weak, and he childishly wanted his dad to tell him it would be okay. He was cut off before he could speak by the door to the OR being pushed open by an exhausted looking doctor.
Dad stood up and approached the doctor anxiously, attempting to keep his expression stoic. Sam could see the tell-tale lines of worry around the corners of his mouth. "How is he?"
The doctor smiled faintly and clutched the clipboard in his hands tighter to his chest. "He'll be fine. There was some internal bleeding. His spleen was seriously damaged, and we had to remove it. He's asleep right now, we're moving him down to room 203. You can visit him as soon as he's situated, but he won't wake up for a few—"
The doctor trailed off, and John glanced around impatiently, searching for what had caught the doctor's attention. Sam had risen to his feet and taken off down the hallway the moment he'd heard the room number.
Sam clutched Dean's hand tightly and covered his mouth with his other hand, holding back the loud sobs threatening to escape his lips with his shaking fingers. He'd ditched the sling as soon as he could, not wanting to be hindered by the restricting cloth. The monitor next to Dean's bed showed his heart rate, which was comfortingly steady, but Sam couldn't focus on that. He was caught up in how pale Dean was, by the red gashes and stitches marring his skin, by how small and fragile his big brother suddenly looked.
Sam felt a tear slip from the corner of his eye. He reached up to wipe it away.
Cas's thumb gently cupped his cheek and brushed the tear away before Sam could do it himself. Sam gripped Cas's wrist and tugged him close, wrapping his free arm around the smaller man's waist. He kept a firm grip on his brother's hand.
"I'm sorry," Cas murmured softly, pressing his forehead to Sam's chest and curling his fingers into the starched fabric of Sam's shirt. Cas tiled his head so his nose was pressed to Sam's neck and breathed deeply, allowing himself to sag against Sam. He finally felt safe. "I'm so sorry, Sam…"
"For what?" Sam asked, confused. He clutched at the back of Cas's trench coat, holding him tightly. Cas leaned into him more heavily, too weak to hold himself up anymore. "You got us out, didn't you? You saved us."
Cas shrugged and nuzzled closer to Sam. He felt his wings twitch where they were curled up behind him; he had been unable to fold them back up completely.
"Where did you go?" Sam asked softly, carding his fingers through Cas's hair.
When Cas replied, his voice was measured and careful. "I…I needed some time. My…my wings…"
"Oh, Cas," Sam breathed, drawing back slightly to cup Cas's cheek in one hand. "Are they…do you need help? What do you need?"
Cas paused for a moment and took in the man before him. Sam was pale and exhausted; Cas could feel his hands shaking. Sam had a strong grip on Dean's hand, and Cas doubted Sam would be letting go anytime soon. Four of his fingers were splinted, three visible gashes had been stitched, and his skin was dotted with plaster to cover the smaller wounds. Cas knew there were more wounds hidden beneath his clothing. He met Sam's gaze and the vice around his heart tightened; fear, discomfort, and uncertainty swirled in Sam's dark eyes.
Sam was still scared. Sam was still in shock from being kept and tortured by Lucifer.
Cas shifted his wings and curled them around his body so they wrapped completely around him and Sam. He stretched them out and rolled his shoulders, wincing when he heard the cracks that accompanied any movement of his wings lately. Sam stiffened when he felt a sudden warm, heavy presence pressing against his back and shoulders. He felt soft feathers brushing the skin at the back of his neck. He slipped his hand around Cas's waist and moved it to hover inches away from Cas's wings. He could see them now, midnight black and wrapped around him protectively, encompassing him in a cocoon of warmth and safety.
"Cas, you…you don't have to," Sam said softly. "I don't need that to know…"
"I want to," Cas replied firmly. "I trust you, Sam."
Cas watched Sam's fingers hover uncertainly near his wings for a few moments before reaching to grip Sam's wrist gently, taking care not to jostle his splinted finger, and pressed Sam's palm to his wing. Sam ran his fingers over the patch of midnight black feathers, breathless in awe.
"Beautiful," Sam breathed running his fingers through the silky feathers. Cas's wings were huge; they almost completely covered Sam from his head to his feet. Sam could see the twisted bones that had healed incorrectly, the chunks of feathers that had been torn out, the scars that wrapped around them. Cas ducked his head and fought the blush rising in his cheeks.
Cas wrapped his wings a little tighter around Sam. Sam could see the muscles ripple under the taxed skin; Cas shuddered. Sam rubbed one of the joints of Cas's wings gently, hoping it would ease some of the pain. "Cas, babe…"
"I'm fine, Sam," Cas said softly, digging his fingers into Sam's sides. He would need help getting them folded back up, and he needed help untangling the mess of emotions in his chest from the past few days. As soon as Dean was well and Sam was healed. He could wait a little longer. "I…When you have a chance…I think…when you can…I need help."
Sam hugged Cas tightly with one arm around his waist and let out a deep breath. Cas hated asking for help. He could feel the tension ease out of Cas's body under his hands, and guilt twisted his stomach; Cas had probably been holding in a lot, and he didn't know how to handle it. Sam pressed his lisp to Cas's forehead and replied softly, "All you ever have to do is ask."
John strode down the hallway with a coffee in each hand. Sam had sent him to get coffee, refusing to come to the cafeteria to eat anything. John understood Sam was worried about Dean, but e was being ridiculously overprotective. John had tried to get Sam to talk about what had happened to him while he'd been missing, but Sam had repeatedly shut him down or changed the subject. John turned to enter Dean's room, but stopped short when he saw that Sam wasn't alone anymore.
John could just make out the top half of Sam's head over the dark shield of the angel's wings around him. He could see Sam's fingers tangled in the feathers. Sam's head tilted forward slightly and his long, chocolate locks mingled with Castiel's dark hair. Cas's wings shifted and John caught a glimpse of Sam's lips pressed to the smaller man's. He saw Sam's lips move where they were pressed against Castiel's, and they formed 'I love you' unmistakably. Castiel replied with a soft 'You, too.' The tension that had been in Sam's shoulders since they'd found him seemed to melt away, and Castiel's hands were shaking considerably less than they had been while they searched for Sam. John saw that Sam kept a grip on Dean's hand even as he spoke softly to Castiel.
John shifted uncomfortably in the doorway. For all his talk about Sam's relationship with this guy, he knew what it meant if Castiel was wrapping his wings around Sam. It was one thing for an angel to let their mate touch their wings; it was something else entirely if they wrapped their wings around them. This wasn't something he was meant to see. As much as John didn't like Castiel, the gesture was too intimate, too private to brush off.
He quietly stepped out of the room and set off to find Bobby, unsure of how to handle Sam and Castiel anymore. he found himself still disgusted by the idea of Sam being in a relationship with a man, but how could he begrudge his baby happiness? He needed some time to think about it, but maybe he'd try to rethink this.
Halfway down the hall, he heard Dean's hoarse, groggy voice snap, "Aw, c'mon guys, I'm in the hospital here and you can't keep your hands to yourself for five fucking minutes? What's wrong with you?"
So there it is. Kind of fluffy. I hope you all liked it.
Let me know what you thought of this part, or the whole thing overall. I appreciate it:)
Thanks for reading.