Dean was awake before the dull light of an overcast dawn. He had pulled on his jeans and grabbed his boots and jacket before slipping out of the hotel room, leaving behind Cas, peacefully curled under the covers. Dean could hear the whisper of early traffic on a nearby highway, but no birds yet. He shrugged on his jacket and turned the collar up against the cold, before sitting on the stoop to pull the boots on. He wasn't entirely sure why he was outside, except that he needed to think - alone.

He shoved his hands deep into the jacket pockets to keep them warm. He must be crazy. Why was he out here fretting in the freezing, blue dawn, when he could be in a warm bed? Next to a pliant, willing body, that he trusted. His closest friend. With benefits. Charmingly enthusiastic benefits.

Dean was more content than he'd ever remembered being. No matter what happened, he was confident he and Cas could weather it all, even if they couldn't beat it all. But occasionally, he'd wake up in the dark and remember what it used to be like, when he'd been alone; the nightmares, the losses, the times he'd just kept moving forward by pure habit and pig-headedness, without Sam, without any real purpose any more. And he'd wonder - would it be like that again? And would he be able to keep going next time? So - he was out here waiting for the hammer to fall, trying to prepare himself for something which, in his experience, was all too likely to happen. Stacked odds he could handle, but happiness? He didn't have much previous experience with it, except briefly, to have it taken away. Suddenly, his anxiety made sense to him.

He heard one or two birds starting to tweet short wake-up calls to each other. He stood up and prepared to go back in. If this weirdly un-Winchester contentment all ended one day, did he want to look back and remember wasted time, spent sitting alone in the dark, being all 'emo'?

Just as he reached for the door, the latch clicked and the door opened revealing Cas, in pyjama pants and t-shirt, scowling grumpily. "Dean, what are you doing?" Cas' voice was rough as he tried to keep it to a quiet whisper. Dean smiled, finding Cas' early morning grouchiness endearingly familiar. "Nothing. Just thinking," he murmured. Cas' frown deepened. "Were you afraid your thinking would wake me?" Dean paused as he was about to squeeze past Cas into their room. "Dude, was that attitude?"

Cas' scowl smoothed out and his lips showed evidence of a tiny smile, as he pulled Dean the rest of the way in and closed the door. Cas rubbed Dean's hands, trying to warm them while Dean tried to slip his hands free and put his arms around Cas. Cas held Dean away with a palm on his chest. "Those hands aren't touching me until they warm up." Dean grinned and leaned in to kiss Cas on the lips. He soon had Castiel distracted enough to forgive his cold hands.