When the Devil Takes Hold
Summary: Sequel to The Angel at my Side (recommend you read it first). They managed to survive their encounter with Lucifer but what happens when the Devil decides to go after his vessel? One angel is standing in his way; can Castiel protect the Winchesters from the Devil himself? AU. AngelWhump. Warnings: torture/abuse in future chapters, mild cussing. Rated M to be safe.
Disclaimer: I do not own Supernatural. Title comes from the song "Oh Death" sung by Jen Titus in the series.
*May want to read The Angel at my Side first!
Dean woke late the next day with a horrible crick in his neck. With a groan he straightened and took in the surroundings of the room. He had fallen asleep in the chair he had pulled up next to the cot Castiel was resting in. The angel was still sleeping, pale-faced and slightly restless. Dean noticed the tight line of his mouth and felt uneasy. Apparently being cut off from Heaven really takes its toll.
Ellen walked into the living room and handed Dean a glass of water. "Mornin' Dean. He hasn't woken up yet. I was about to check up on him."
Dean nodded and sipped the water. "As soon as he wakes up we should move him to the bedroom upstairs. That way Bobby can have his cot back and Cas can rest without all of us in the way."
"Yeah you should have heard Bobby bitchin'. Sam and Jo took him out for a supply run…mostly I think to get him outta the house. Think you can help me check up on ol' Feathers there?" She had adopted Bobby's nickname for the angel.
Dean pushed his chair aside, "Sure Ellen, just tell me what you need me to do."
Ellen grabbed some gauze and rubbing alcohol she had set aside. "I never heard of an angel getting' an infection but if something's gonna fester a hellhound bite would be it."
"Better to be careful," Dean agreed.
"Alright if you could just hold Sleeping Beauty up I'll get to work."
Dean worked his way behind Castiel and pulled the angel up so he was resting on Dean's chest. Ellen began unwrapping the bandages around his chest and stomach. She took the time to make Cas a little more comfortable and with Dean's help she removed his trench coat, suit jacket, tie, and the remains of the white shirt underneath. Confronted with a bare chest Ellen was finally able to properly asses and dress the various wounds.
From what Dean could see the wounds were healing but not nearly as quickly as he had hoped. Some of the lacerations on his chest were beginning to knit together but the wound across his abdomen was still bleeding sluggishly. Ellen wiped the scabbing area gently and wet a cloth with alcohol.
"Hope he is a heavy sleeper," she said trying to lighten the mood. Dean held Castiel's shoulders a little more tightly. Castiel jerked as she disinfected the smaller wounds but did not wake. Ellen wet the cloth again and got ready to clean the abdominal wound.
Dean felt his stomach turn slightly in sympathy for the pain he hoped his friend was not conscious enough to feel. Before yesterday I didn't even think angels could feel pain. He could not help but feel a little bit of guilt for how he had totally ignored Castiel's injuries in the past.
Castiel moaned slightly as Ellen scraped away the caked blood so the wound underneath could be disinfected.
"Easy…easy there Cas," Dean heard himself trying to soothe the angel in his arms. Since when am I such a girl? He shook the thought from his head. He would do the same thing for Sam…why is Cas any different?
However as soon as the alcohol-soaked rag hit the exposed wound Castiel jerked awake. He snatched Ellen's hand in a vice-like grip before Dean even realized what was happening. A flash of silver caught his eye and he was just able to yank the angel's arm back before the dagger made contact with Ellen's throat.
"Woah!" Dean yelled, trying to pull fighting angel back. Their struggle caused them to crash to the ground with Dean holding Cas against the floor and pinning his arm behind his back. "Easy Cas! It's us…you are at Bobby's-" Dean pried the dagger from Cas's fingers and jumped off of his back. Cas was up in a flash, his eyes wild and his chest heaving with uneven breaths.
Dean held his hands out in front of him in an attempt to calm Cas and show he was unarmed. "You are at Bobby's." he repeated, "You are safe. We are trying to help."
The feral look faded from Cas's eyes and his panting evened out as he began to recognize his surroundings. "Dean…" He coughed and leant against the table behind him and saw Ellen behind Dean holding her wrist. "I apologize….I didn't hurt-"
"I'm fine Feathers. Although I gotta say you are no spring daisy after a nap."
"Yes," Castiel said tiredly, "I am not used to experiencing a loss of conciseness and recent events have caused me to become rather…defensive." He wrapped an arm around his bare torso. The abdominal wound had re-opened during the scuffle and had begun to bleed in earnest.
Dean felt a surge of anger rise up with Casiel's last comment. He was by no doubt talking about being number one on the mook's hit list. "Forget about it," he said roughly while walking to Castiel. "We do need to take care of those wounds though." He helped Cas back down to the cot and pressed some gauze to the wound. "I hate to do this buddy, but I think this guy will heal up much easier if we stitched it." Castiel only nodded distractedly.
Ellen brought Dean the necessary supplies and disinfected the area. Dean took a breath. I am healing not hurting…healing. He glanced up to find Castiel's eyes boring a hole through him. He cleared his throat uncomfortably and picked up the needle.
Dean had to give the angel credit. Cas made no outward indication that Dean was doing anything (besides the tight set of his jaw). He simply stared at the late afternoon sun lowering itself over the scrap yard. Dean was thankful…the action of piercing human flesh again was causing him to break out in a cold sweat. His hand shook slightly and he closed his eyes, releasing a shaky breath. Any memories from hell that were thinking about surfacing could damn well go back into the corner of his mind where he shoved them.
"You are doing fine Dean." Castiel's voice was quiet and kind. Dean pulled himself together and finished the last stitches. He stepped back and Ellen continued to dress the remainder of Castiel's wounds.
Just as she finished Jo opened the front door and Bobby rolled into the living room followed by Sam who was staggering under the weight of what looked like a month's worth of groceries.
"Cas you are awake!" Jo exclaimed and ran over to the angel's side. "How're ya healin'?"
"I am doing well, thank you Jo." Castiel responded affectionately.
"Wanna flutter up to the spare bedroom upstairs?" Dean asked. "Then you can rest without the lot of us bothering you."
Cas looked uncertain but made a move to stand anyway. Jo snuck herself under his arm and helped to support him.
"Why don't I help you up the stairs Cas. I'm not sure flyin' is the smartest option…I'm sure your wings are still hurtin'."
Cas took the offered help. "Yes they are still quite uncomfortable," he said. The two slowly made their way up the stairs.
Jo walked by the guest room a few hours later to find Dean watching over the sleeping angel. "Aren't they supposed to watch over you?" she joked lightly.
"Yeah well my life has always been a little backwards," he said with a slight smile. "I was thinking we should ask him if we can check his wings to see how they are healing. He said earlier they were hurting him."
"Probably a good idea," Jo agreed and crouched down beside the angel. She placed a hand gently on his cheek and talked quietly to wake him. After a moment blue eyes cracked open and focused on her. Dean did not miss the brief lines of pain that disappeared as soon as he woke up fully.
"Jo. Dean," he greeted formally, easing himself into a sitting position.
"Cas we need to check your wings. Maybe change the bandages," Dean said matter-of-factly. Of all the insane things I've said in my life…
"Of course," Castiel responded immediately. Something about the certainty and trust in his voice made Dean uncomfortable. What the hell have I done to deserve the trust of a frickin angel?
"I'll get some bandages," he muttered and ducked out of the room.
Castiel sat forward in the bed, letting the blankets pool around his waist. "You may want to step back Jo," he warned. Jo stepped away from the bed and in a flash huge dark wings unfurled themselves from Castiel's back.
In the chaos of the previous day, Jo did not have the time to actually see Castiel's wings. Now they filled the small bedroom and even swathed in dirty bandages, they were beautiful. Jo took care in unwrapping each strip of cloth and examined the wounds under the yellow overhead light.
Upon closer inspection she noticed that the feathers were not completely black like she first thought. In fact many of them were a midnight blue color and showed shimmers of silver when he moved. It reminded her of the star-filled sky. She could not stop herself from reaching out to lightly stroke a shimmering feather. It was incredibly soft…touching them felt like running your hand through water and across velvet at the same time. It was like nothing she had ever felt before. However, not all the feathers looked like this; interspersed with the otherworldly feathers were ones that were a charcoal black and felt rough to the touch. Finally Jo caught herself and lowered her hand. Her eyes caught Castiel's and she found him gazing at her intently.
"Cas, what happened?" she asked quietly. She could still feel the impression of the star-like feathers on her fingertips and she felt as though it was almost a crime for a single one to be marred.
Castiel tilted his head slightly as though he was confused by her question. "They were burned," he said. His tone implied that the answer was quite obvious. Dean walked in the room and laid the fresh supplies on the bed.
"Burned how? What could possibly burn angel wings?" Jo stoked a damaged feather lightly.
The declaration hit Dean in the stomach like a ton of bricks. For some reason he never thought that retrieving his soul from Hell had caused any harm to the angel. The realization that Castiel was permanently scarred, disfigured, to save a soul that had broken and had been freely torturing others, made him sick.
He found he could not meet Castiel's eyes.
"Dean…" Cas's voice was quiet and tired but gentle. The tone suggested Castiel already knew what Dean was feeling and that the angel did not agree; that his actions were his own and he felt retrieving Dean's soul was well worth any damage it had caused him. Dean decided not to pursue the conversation. How was he supposed to convince the angel, who obviously cared for him, that he just wasn't worth the sacrifice?
Dean began to help Jo clean the wounds on Cas's wings. Together they dressed the wounds and Dean helped splint the broken bones. He remained quiet during the time it took to do this, happy to let Jo fill the room with her cheerful conversation. Castiel's attention never left Dean however, and even as Dean left the room he could feel the angel's worried gaze on his back.
A/N: A little hurt/comfort sweetness to start things off! No worries, action is right around the corner. Tell me what you think!
Look for the next chapter soon…I broke my own rule in that I am posting this before it is completely done (I got excited). I'll try and stay a chapter ahead in my writing but it may be a while between updates in the future.