If there was one thing that Dean Winchester hated more than Leviathans it was subways. He wasn't exactly sure why but it was something to do with the fact that they were loud, dark and smelt of a combination of cigarettes and urine. He also wasn't too hot with New York. Mainly for the same reasons as the subway. He didn't know why Sam had come up with the idea of leaving his baby in the middle of The Bronx. Visions of his car being stolen haunted his mind. He really wasn't having a good night. He glanced up at his little brother when he saw Sam rub the side of his head. A worried look crossed Dean's face. "How you holding up, Sam?"
Sam slowly met his eyes. "I'm fine, Dean. I just want to get home."
Dean shook his head as he followed his younger brother down the gritty, chewing gum covered stairs that led to Manhattan's subway. He knew his brother was lying. He knew that Sam was concussed after the poltergeist threw him into the wall. But knowing Sam he wasn't going to admit to it. The kid was probably worried that he would be inconvenient.
The subway, as Dean had predicted, was completely deserted. Dark and all in all a pretty grim looking place. Dean's emerald eyes scanned around. Trained eyes accustomed to the darkness after years of hunting. There was a rumble that echoed around the entire subway. Dean remembered going in a subway when he was a little kid. He remembered clinging to his father because he was scared that the monster would get him. The scary monster that made the scary noises. Sam was looking at his brother. "Dean?"
Dean's eyes slowly met with his brothers matching green ones. "Yeah?"
Dean shot his brother a look. "I'm not the one with a concussion, Samantha"
Sam ignored his brother's remark. "Dean, I meant about Cas. Are you ok?"
Dean laughed hollowly. "The guy tried to kill me and turned you into a nervous wreck. You think I actually mind that the guy drowned himself? I mean even when he died he caused more trouble, blowing out all those leviathan sons of bitches" Dean walked ahead of Sam when he said that. Hands shoved down in his pockets and head hung low. Sam sighed. He definitely wasn't ok. Sam looked up in Heaven's general direction. "Give me strength" He muttered under his breath. But either way he still followed his elder brother into the darkness.
Dean could smell the strong stench of urine. He flared his nostrils a little and decided that he would be breathing through his mouth from now on. He looked over at Sam just as his little brother walked off the last step. "This was a great idea." He deadpanned. Sam sighed. "Dean it was easier to get to Manhattan this way. They wouldn't be able to track us."
"Yeah but then there is the small fact that we left my baby in the middle of the goddamned Bronx!"
Sam wasn't going to bother arguing with his brother. When Dean got worked up about anything like this it was best to just keep your mouth shut and agree with everything. Besides, his head was killing. Dean happened to glance up when just as Sam rubbed the side of his head. Sam's ever present frown seemed to deepen when he saw blood on his hands. Suddenly, the argument was over and Dean was in front of him. "Sammy?...hang on there ok? As soon as we get back to the car I'm gunna call Bobby and get you looked over"
Sam nodded, still staring at his hand. The blood was almost blending in with the scar on his palm from the glass. He flinched when he heard the voice. The voice that plagued his dreams.
Lucifer's voice seemed to echo around in the darkness. Bouncing off the walls and boring into what was left of Sam's soul. He jumped and nearly threw a punch when Dean clamped a hand down on his shoulder. "Sammy! Hey!" Dean's voice was etched with worry. "you tripping out again?"
Sam shook his head. "I…I'm fine." His big green eyes slowly travelled up to look his brother in the eyes. Sam swallowed dryly. "I'm fine." He repeated. Dean shook his head. "Yeah…and I bet the pigs are flying in a frigging formation."
Sam opened his mouth to argue with his elder brother, but stopped when he saw a blinding white light appear from one end of the tracks. Dean looked over. He sighed. A good few hours on a train filled with dodgy New Yorkers.
"Whoop-de-friggin-hoo" The elder Winchester boy muttered under his breath. Sam squinted a little. The headlights on this subway train were pretty bright. The train slowed and its breaks hissed, like a white snake slithering through the darkness. The Winchester Brothers stood there in that awkward way that many people do when waiting to board a train. The doors slid open. Dean was greeted with the pure description of any subway train in a big city. In short, it wasn't a very nice sight. There was only so much chewing gum that could be stamped into the floor. Sam was pretty sure that this was used as a public toilet like everything else was in New York. Sighing, he stepped on.
It was empty.
That wasn't right. Surely a New York subway would be overflowing with people at 10:30 at night. But there wasn't a single soul on board. The doors were still open. Dean glanced back over his shoulder. Should they make a break for it? He thought about telling Sam that they should wait for the next train but stopped when he realised what condition his little brother was in. Dean pulled the gun from the back of his jeans. He loaded it. Sam shot him a confused glance. Dean shrugged.
Sam took a few steps down the carriage. Before sitting down in one of the seats that had seen better days. The smell wasn't particularly pleasant. Dean looked up and down the carriage before taking a seat next to his younger brother. The doors slid shut, making Dean jump and point his gun in the general direction, sighing embarrassedly when he realised that nothing was there. The train jerked to life, and began speeding into the darkness. Dean glared at his brother.
"Could have been back in the motel now. Could have been asleep…."
"Shut up, Dean"
Dean just shook his head.
The two sat in silence rocking back and forth a little as the train sped on. Dean was looking at his scuffed boots, gun still in hand, ready to blast a substantial amount of holes into anything that tried to attack. He didn't know why but he couldn't shake the feeling that something was watching him. Subways were never empty. Ever. Dean had thought about the theory that there were some passengers in one of the other carriages, but for some reason that just didn't seem to work for him. Dean nibbled on his bottom lip. Why did he do it? What sick thing did that bastard Crowley do to Castiel? The angel that was the closest thing to a best friend that Dean ever had. But Dean should have known that something like that would never work. Not for long. You didn't get friends in their line of work. And if you did they all ended up dead. Dean thought that Castiel would be different though. I mean, who didn't know more about the Supernatural than an angel? Dean thought that Cas would be able to look after himself, and it was this foolish thought that wound them up to where they were now. Castiel could look after himself…what the hell was he thinking? Castiel was the youngest angel in Heaven and was vexed by something as simple as a television (Dean fondly remembered the time when the angel had asked him why he had trapped lots of small people in a box) Of course he wouldn't be able to look after himself. And Crowley had taken advantage of that.
Dean sighed, and ran a hand over his tired face. Castiel wasn't there anymore. Castiel was dead. Gone. And he was never coming back. And as much as it hurt to think it, Dean knew that it was all his fault. He had said to Castiel that he was the only family he had other than Sam and Bobby. And it was true. If anything, Dean saw Castiel as another little brother. He was meant to look after his little brothers. Dean glanced over at Sam, who was just staring out the window opposite them with a vacant look on his face, as the darkness flew past. He was meant to protect his little brothers. Adam, his half-brother, was still in hell after Michael had taken him as a vessel. Sam, his Sammy, he was a nervous wreck, jumping at shadows and tripping hells bells. And Castiel? Cas wasn't even blood. He was thousands and thousands of years older than Dean, Sam and Bobby put together. But Dean still saw him as a little brother. Maybe it was down to how naïve the blue eyed angel was, Dean didn't know, but he had the urge to protect the kid. And he had failed. He had failed.
Sam looked up when the train pulled to a holt. The platform outside was lit up by an uncanny yellow glow from the dingy lights. Now that the train had stopped Sam could hear the hustle and bustle of people and cars on the streets above. The platform was empty. Sam frowned a little when he felt a sudden twinge of pain in his head. He ran his fingertips over the gash above his temple, hidden by his long fudge coloured hair. He looked back up when the pain subsided. He felt his body jump when he saw the man. There was a man standing on the platform. He looked to be in his later years. His black hair was just beginning to grey on the sides. He was dressed in a black suit, with a blue tie. His shoes were shiny and all in all he looked like quite a decent fellow. Sam nudged Dean. "See him?" He muttered. Dean looked up, spotted the man and shrugged. "What about him?"
Sam had a puzzled look on his face as the man walked towards the trains doors. "I don't know…something just seems weird about him."
Dean had an exasperated look on his tanned face. "Sam, it's a guy on his way home from work, chill." Dean waved his gun around in a he'll get it in the head if he's a monster sort of way. "No problem." He then proceeded to hide the gun under his coat as the man got on the train. The man had strange eyes. Not strange in the way that would suggest that he was a Supernatural being or something like a paedophile, but they were strange. A murky brown that seemed to have a sparkle in them. He looked at Dean and Sam for a few moments. He looked just as nervous as Dean had when he had stepped onto the train. Well, at least it wasn't empty any more.
Once more they sat in silence. No-one else got on. The silence was only broken when the man started to hum under his breath. A tune that sounded oddly like Owl City's Fireflies. Dean ignored it. The man was fumbling with his hands. Every now and then he would look up at one of the brothers. Sam smiled, but Dean just stared him down. It was when Dean did this that the man spoke. It was to Dean. "You have something on your mind, don't you?"
The mans voice was calming, and it matched his eyes. The man linked his fingers and rested his elbows on his knees, leaning forward a little. Dean glared at him. "I don't even know you." The man smiled. It was a patient smile, like he had done this before. "I am aware of that."
Dean narrowed his eyes, and looked to his left, the rumble of the tracks was the only sound. Sam's eyes were hovering shut, he was leaning against the glass panelling that separated the seats from the door. Dean had a pained look on his face. He nudged his brother a little. "Sam…Sammy you have to stay awake."
"Why?" Sam moaned, gaining a smile from Dean. He was reminded of a thirteen year old Sam, asking him the same question as to why he couldn't sleep. The smile faded as he pulled his little brother back upright. "You might be concussed, Dude."
The man sitting opposite them spoke then. "Something happen?"
Dean cast the man an icy stare. "Our business, not yours." The man shook his head. "It is my business. I'm a doctor."
Dean's eyes widened. He looked back at the man. "oh…uh…sorry. C-Could you—"
"Take a look at him?" The man finished, shakily getting to his feet, his movements were concentrated as the train rocked him about, but he made his way over to Sam. He crouched down, his knees popping audibly. He tilted Sam's head up so there was more light on it, his fingers lightly touching his forehead as he studied the wound. After a few moments the man got to his feet. "He's fine. He's alright sleeping."
With a smile, Sam closed his eyes. He was asleep in moments. Dean looked over at the man, who was now sitting back down in his chair. "Thanks…" Dean mumbled.
The man smiled, and extended a hand. "Dr George Messenger. Psychologist."
Dean nodded, and shook his hand. "Dean Winchester…um…Mechanic." That was the best lie he could muster at the moment. The man seemed to buy it. Much to Dean's relief. There was silence once more, but only for a few moments. It was George who broke it. "I can tell that there is something on your mind…Dean, was it?"
"Yeah, Dean." Dean answered, nodding a little. George nodded, laying his hands on the lapels of his suit jacket and tugging it closer around him. "What seems to be the problem?"
Dean was tempted to just tell the man utter bullshit. Problems at work etc. etc. Besides, Dean was good at bullshitting people. It was trait he was quite proud of, thank you very much. But there was something different. Something about the way the man was sitting there, looking Dean straight in the eyes…it was calming. And Dean found himself wanting to tell the man everything.
He stopped himself before he began. You're really going to tell him your story? He thought to himself. You're going to tell a psychologist that you've been hunting monsters since you were 10 and that you're best friend, who just happens to be an angel, has betrayed you? Good luck getting out of the local mental asylum, Dick. Dean shook his head. George raised an eyebrow. "Dean?"
The train jerked a little. Sam lolled to the side, his head was now resting on Dean's shoulder. Dean slowly turned his head, looking down at his little brother. George smiled a little. Dean was giving the taller boy one hell of a glare. George nodded to him. "Friend of yours?"
Dean smiled faintly. Reaching out a hand to lightly brush Sam's fringe out of his face, he stopped abruptly. Embarrassed. "H-He's my kid brother."
George nodded. "Ah, I see. I should have guessed."
"What do you mean?"
"As soon as I stepped on this train your shoulders broadened. It's a common human reaction when distressed. Or…when they have the need to protect someone. You didn't know who I was. I was a complete stranger to you, and, thinking that I could be a threat you instantly tried to protect him, no matter how discreetly you did it."
Dean blinked a few times, and then looked down at his boots. Cheeks reddening. George chuckled lightly. "I'm guessing you and your brother are close?"
Dean sighed, looking back up at the older man. "Not as close as we used to be." George tilted his head. "Oh? And why is that?"
Dean sighed again. There was nothing else for it. He needed to tell someone. He had been holding it in for so long. He could tell him couldn't he? He could miss out on the whole Supernatural entity part of his life….couldn't he?
Dean took a deep breath, and began his story.
"When I was four, our Mom died in a fire, at our house back in Kansas."
"I'm sorry to hear that." The man said, and he actually did sound sympathetic. Dean nodded. "The cops never really worked out how it happened. She was killed in Sammy's nursery."
"Sammy?" The man frowned.
Dean jerked his head down at his little brother, who was still dozing happily, using Dean's shoulder as a pillow. It wasn't the first time. Throughout his life Dean has been used as a Sam Winchester pillow on many occasions. But that was normally when the boy was six or seven. Since then Sam had grown a considerable amount. (much to Dean's annoyance) George nodded again. Understanding.
Dean thought it was best that he didn't tell the man that his Mother had died on the ceiling. He looked back up at George, pursing his lips a little. "Our Dad never really got over it. We were…always on the road, he was always going from job to job. I think I just felt bad for Sammy. He never got to have a very normal life. Always moving schools, making friends and then losing them."
George nodded, his amber eyes glanced over at Sam who was still sound asleep. He looked back at Dean. "What about you, Dean? How did you feel about all of this?"
Dean was quiet for a few seconds. "Um…I guess I just…um…"
George raised an eyebrow. "You didn't really get a say in anything did you?" Dean shook his head after some time. He looked down at Sam, his eyes were full of sadness. George sighed. "Was your father abusive, Dean?"
"What?! No!" Dean snapped. George nodded, his voice calm. "Ok…alright…I understand..." He frowned when he saw Dean shaking a little. He sighed, his voice softening. "Denial doesn't help Dean. Did he…hit you?"
"Only when I deserved it." Dean mumbled, his hand tightened around Sam. George had a pained expression on his face. "No child deserves to be hit, Dean."
Dean didn't answer. He just stared down at his feet. He never really told anyone about the times when his Father hit him. It was only Bobby that knew. And Bobby had nearly blasted a hole in John Winchester's head when he found out. Dean looked back down at his little brother. Sammy didn't know. And that was the way he wanted it to stay. Sam was better off not knowing. It pained him to think it but it was true.
George was silent for some time. Dean looked up at him slowly. George met his eyes. "There's something else isn't there?" He murmured. "There's something else that you're afraid of."
Dean sucked in a deep breath. "I…someone I knew, someone I trusted betrayed me."
"A good friend." Dean sighed. "One of the only ones I had, really. I couldn't believe it. People kept on telling me that he was doing something terribly wrong. But I wouldn't believe it and then…."
"Then you saw it for yourself?"
Dean nodded. "And now I cant…he…he died a few nights ago."
George looked down sadly. "I…I see. I'm sorry to hear that."
The train rolled on in silence for a few moments. Dean was looking down at Sam, smiling a little. It was good to see him sleep. Even if it was just for a little while. The truth was that Sam hadn't been sleeping much lately, and the saddest part was that Sam didn't think Dean knew. Dean sighed a little, he ran his fingers through his little brothers hair absentmindedly. Something that he rarely allowed himself to do. No chickflick moments. Dean thought, with a little huff of laughter. The train slowly pulled to a halt. The man looked up. He sighed. "This is my stop."
Dean nodded. "'Kay…"
The man got to his feet and held out a hand. "It was nice talking to you, Dean."
"You too." Dean said, forcing a smile as he shook his hand. George looked down and smiled at Sam. "He should be fine, just let him rest."
Dean nodded again. "Thank you."
Gabriel smiled a little when he heard the train doors close behind him. He stepped onto the platform, morphing into his usual form. He watched as the train slid away. He picked up the briefcase, and slowly started to walk up the stairs.
Dean Winchester was a good man. But sometimes even the dtrognest men need to let everything out. Gabriel whistled a tune under his breath as he climbed the stone steps, a small smile tugged at the corner of his lips when he saw the top of the stairs explode into a bright white light. The stairs behind Gabriel slowly began to float off. He finished whistling and started to murmur the lyrics under his breath.
I'd like to make myself believe…that planet Earth turns slowly…He walked off into the light. And even when the gateway closed behind him,
He was smiling.