A/N: Just an idea I had. Voila.
Disclaimer: I don't own SPN or Bright Eyes' song "First Day of My Life"
Throughout all the years they've known each other, two things have always remained true: Dean would kill anyone who hurt his car and Cas has had a thing for Bright Eyes.
The kid can't get into Star Trek, he actively makes fun of Dean for watching Dr. Sexy and General Hospital, he "doesn't get" Star Wars (this is nothing short of Blasphemous), but he latches onto some girly emo dude singing about his feelings and shit. Figures. Dean was always more awesome with this stuff. Before things delved into the minutely gay and horrifically cute, it had never been of any consequence to their friendship. Dean just added it to his list of things he teased Cas about endlessly and Cas took it with a small smirk and a deadpan witty remark that would make a demon stumble over their words. They had a system and it worked for them.
But the thing about falling in love with your best friend is that you inevitably get roped into their obsessions, if not because you actually like whatever they're obsessed about but because you are a hopeless pathetic individual who couldn't say no to them if you were paid to do it.
Dean didn't actively like Castiel's music but he didn't dislike it either. He'd happily listen to his boyfriend rant about the pros and cons of so-and-so's new album if only to see the innate passion that lights up those blue eyes like it's magic. Hell, he even knows the words to way too many of the songs by now. The other day he caught himself humming along to 'No Lies, Just Love' in the coffee shop they frequent. Of course there was the one time he caught himself singing to a John Mayer song - in public - that Dean is sure he'll never ever live down.
Some of it he actually does like. Dylan of course, is a classic. Butch Walker has some moments of not sucking that light Dean's world up like a tiny ray of hope whenever he lets Cas pick the music. It's an uphill battle.
But this? This is different. This isn't about the music. Shit, it's not even really about the song. It's not about getting Cas to forgive him or making some sort of big gooey gross romantic gesture (okay maybe it's a little bit about that). It's about proving something to himself and to Cas and doing something that absolutely terrifies Dean.
Seriously, this shit scares him almost as much as flying.
It's that bad.
Which is why when Cas and Anna walk into the coffee shop for open mic night neither one of them is expecting to see Dean sitting off to the side of the stage with a guitar in his lap looking like he wants to cry or run away really fast. There's not even time for his boyfriend to ask him what he's doing here and Dean's not even sure if Cas has seen him yet but he's getting yanked up onto the stage by Jo and if he hasn't seen Dean yet he's about to.
The crowd (a blessedly small one) is staring at Dean expectantly as he sits down on the stool set up for him. Jo's either decided to take up her career as a comedian tonight or is just so busy that she doesn't seem to remember to raise the mic stand for him so he has to lean down to speak, "Uh... hey."
Maybe this is a dream because there's actually a cricket track being played.
No, not a dream. Just Sam in the corner playing it on his phone. Asshat.
It takes Dean a minute to get the mic stand in the correct position and to stay there (seriously, who the hell made this piece of shit). "Hey guys. I'm, uh," he clears his throat and smiles sheepishly before sitting back down on his seat and repositioning his guitar, "I'm Dean. And I've never done this before... played in front of anyone so I, uh... Sorry if this sucks."
He's pretty sure the little chuckles that gets are because of Sam and Jo but he's already up here, no going back now, "Before I start I just need to... preface this with something. That cool with you guys?"
"Shut up Dean-O and just fucking play!"
"Gabriel I will kill you."
Despite the seriousness behind Dean's threat that earns him a real laugh from a handful of people in the audience, encouraging him to continue on. "Two days ago I had a fight with my boyfriend. We never fight, ever, and I've spent the past two nights on my little brother's couch. He's here tonight..." Dean's eyes immediately find Castiel's shocked blue ones without any trouble and their stares lock, "I'm an idiot Cas. I learned this song for you... I hope you enjoy it."
He has to look away from Cas if he's going to have any hope of playing the song and Dean shuts his eyes once he has his fingers in place and starts strumming the first few chords easily. This is the part he's never had a problem with - playing in front of other people - it's the singing that scares him. Which is why his mouth seems to have gone on strike but his fingers haven't gotten the memo and Dean's still not singing. There's about a minute where Dean seriously considers bailing on this whole thing and just leaving but then he remembers the pair of blue eyes still staring at him and he looks up.
Cas recognized the opening chords. Of course he would. His eyes are the most beautiful Dean's ever seen them, so full of love and assurance and faith that it almost makes him dizzy. Apparently this jolts something with his mouth because suddenly Dean is singing and he doesn't remember giving his mouth permission to do it. But with Cas there? Staring at him like he's the most beautiful thing he's ever seen? With that much trust and faith and something just-short of awe staring back at him? How could he bail on this?
This is the first day of my life
I swear I was born right in the doorway
I went out in the rain suddenly everything changed
They're spreading blankets on the beach
Dean's voice is tentative at first, like it doesn't quite want to give in and move from a whisper to an actual voice, and that disappears when he sees Cas smile and nod, trying to encourage him to continue.
Yours is the first face that I saw
I think I was blind before I met you
Now I don't know where I am
I don't know where I've been
But I know where I want to go
A few of the women in the audience (Jo and Sammy included) are getting a little teary eyed at the two men. Gabriel, on the other hand, looks like he wants to fall asleep.
And so I thought I'd let you know
That these things take forever
I especially am slow
But I realize that I need you
And I wondered if I could come home?
That was the part of the damn song that started this whole thing in the first place and if Dean sings the words a little more forcefully and with a hopeful smile on his face, he doesn't really care.
Remember the time you drove all night
Just to meet me in the morning?
And I thought it was strange you said everything changed
You felt as if you'd just woke up
And you said "This is the first day of my life
I'm glad I didn't die before I met you
But now I don't care I could go anywhere with you
And I'd probably be happy"
Both of them feel their cheeks flush at that because as many times as Cas had quoted a song to Dean, this one seemed to keep popping up. When Dean left Sam and Cas at Stanford after having a fight, the blue-eyed boy drove to Kansas to meet Dean there and bring him home. He said it was because he was Dean's which left the green-eyed boy horribly confused and slightly worried but then this song came on shuffle in Castiel's car and he pulled Dean over to hear it.
They hadn't admitted their feelings to each other then. They were just two naive and scared kids, barely out of their teens, who were still trying to wrap their brains around sex in general. It was unspoken but a few months before something had shifted in their friendship. They'd realized they loved each other and been too scared to say anything until that moment. When Castiel was scared he was going to lose Dean and he pulled him over to his car and made Dean listen to the song for the first time. Actually listen. By the end of it their lips and hips were crashing into each other with such eager force that they nearly broke the mirror on the Impala.
So if you want to be with me
With these things there's no telling
We just have to wait and see
But I'd rather be working for a paycheck
Than waiting to win the lottery
Besides maybe this time is different
I mean I really think you like me...?
Cas is too stunned to move when the song's over. Anna looks like she wants to cry and at some point she moved to the back to sit with Jo. Dean walks off stage and starts slowly over to Cas with a small smile on his face, "This seat taken?"
It's a rhetorical question and Cas knows it but he also knows how much it bugs Dean when he answers it anyway, "Not currently."
Dean's smile falters a little at the even more formal than normal tone of Castiel's voice and he takes the seat happily before looking up at his boyfriend nervously, "So... hi."
"I miss you."
"I love you. I'm an idiot. You deserve way better than me and for god knows whatever reason you stay with me and I'm sorry. It was stupid and impulsive and not true and childish and you deserve better than that from me. I know you're probably still pissed and it's cool if you are, I'll wait for however long you need but I just... I needed to - "
Dean's cut off by another mouth being pressed over his and a smirking blue-eyed man setting himself down in Dean's lap with practiced ease, "Don't you ever shut up?"
Yeah. This was a good idea.