"If this is how you're going to convince me to say 'yes' to Lucifer, I'd rather you just broke out the torture."
On the other side of the table, the Trickster, no, Gabriel, makes a soft, aggrieved noise, and looks so disappointed in Sam that it has to be an affectation. "Is that really how badly you think of me, Sammy?"
Sam bites back the obvious reply. "You haven't really given me any other options."
"And that's going to change tonight. Come on, sit down, you're starting to be obvious."
Sam glances around, taking in more of his surroundings other than not motel, and Trickster for the first time. Gabriel's brought him to a restaurant, a nicerestaurant, the kind he's only been to once or twice, all soft candlelight and napkins that are real cloth. And, annoyingly, it looks like Gabriel's right—the couple two tables over are starting to stare. Sam takes a minute to appreciate just how him looming threateningly over Gabriel's smaller vessel looks, and then sits carefully across from the archangel.
"You changed my clothes," he hisses. He'd noticed that when Gabriel had first kidnapped him from his motel room, but it hadn't seemed like the most pressing problem at first. Now that it doesn't look like Gabriel's going to hand him over to Lucifer immediately, he has the time to be uncomfortably aware of how tight the pants and the soft dress shirt he's wearing are. Even though Gabriel gave him a jacket, it still makes him feel exposed, and that's the last thing he wants to be right now.
"Well, we could hardly turn up here with you looking like a lumberjack, could we?" Gabriel smiles at him, and there's something predatory there that Sam doesn't like. He makes a vague, encompassing gesture at himself. "See? I changed too."
Sam decides to let it go for now. "And what did you do to my brother?"
Gabriel snorts. "Oh, Dean-o's just fine. He'll wake up in the morning right as rain. I don't want to talk about him, though. I want to talk aboutyou."
Sam swallows hard, and studies his silverware, trying to gauge if the knife is sharp enough to do any damage.
"I mean, I'm guessing you can find your way around the menu fine, but I think I should order the wine."
Sam glances up sharply. "Seriously? You're keeping this up?"
"I'm hungry!" Gabriel meets his eyes, and this time the smile's friendlier. "Come on, Sammy, enjoy yourself. You deserve it." He reaches across the table and pushes Sam's menu towards him with his forefinger. "My treat."
The menu's completely in French, which baffles Sam for a second before he glances at the back and sees that the restaurant's address is in Paris. Now that he thinks about it, the soft murmur of conversation around them hasn't sounded like English; he's just been too caught up in trying to figure out the angel's angle to notice. Gabriel's a bastard. Still, Sam has always wanted to go to Europe, though this isn't exactly what he had in mind.
He frowns at the menu for a few minutes, then gives up. "Fine, you win."
Gabriel glances up from his own menu. "Sorry?" He doesn't sound sorry at all.
"This is some kind of can't escape my destiny, I need to accept what Fate gives me kind of thing, isn't it?" He crosses his arms, feels the pull of his shirt across his chest, and uncrosses them quickly. Surely he's imaging the way Gabriel's eyes follow the movement, isn't he?
Gabriel takes the menu. "No, it's just that you can't read French. I can order for you, if that's what you want." He says it lightly, like it's no big deal, but there's a tension in his face, like he's scared Sam is going to say no.
Sam takes a deep breath. He's in another country, in a fancy restaurant that's even more foreign to him than the city, with probably the most powerful being he's ever met apparently taking him out to dinner. Sometimes, it's best to just go with it.
"That'd be great." He tries to smile, and while it probably looks a little forced, it's at least an effort. Gabriel's returning smile is far easier.
The waiter arrives a few minutes after that, and Sam tries to remember his high school French lessons as Gabriel orders. Nothing comes to mind except a few disjoined words, which doesn't really surprise him; he'd only had a few weeks of classes at one of the many, many high schools he'd gone to.
When the waiter leaves, Gabriel goes back to watching Sam. "So, what all have you crazy kids been up to?"
Sam runs his fingertips through the condensation on his water glass. "Um, trying to save the world, I guess?" Most recently, though, it hadn't been so much world-saving as a good old-fashioned ghost hunt. Sam had just gotten back from the cemetery when Gabriel had found him, and his back still aches from digging up the bones.
"I've been meaning to talk to you about that," Gabriel says slowly, and for once there isn't even a trace of humor in his voice. He meets Sam's gaze, and for a second it's like he's willing Sam to understand something, but Sam doesn't have a clue what it is. "But that can come after dessert." The moment of whateveris clearly broken. Sam's about to call him on it, but then the wine arrives, and Gabriel's focus is gone.
There's a few more minutes of awkward small talk after that. Sam sips at his wine—something sweet and fruity that probably doesn't really go with whatever food Gabriel ordered, but suits the angel perfectly—and tries to answer Gabriel's questions about their latest hunts with something at least close to politeness. He gets to the bottom of his wine glass faster than he'd expected, and Gabriel's topping it off before he can protest.
"Are you trying to get me drunk?" As far as ploys to get Sam to say yes go, it is a little more pleasant than torture.
"What? Of course not!" Gabriel looks too affronted for it to be real, and Sam sighs.
"Yeah right," he mutters. The only sign Gabriel hears him is a slight twitch of his lips.
Maybe it's the wine, but after that, Sam starts to relax.
"I'm sorry if I'm having a hard time trusting you in this," he says a few minutes later. "But I kind of feel like we need to get this out of the way. Last time we saw you, we left you in a ring of holy fire. You turned me into a car."
Gabriel waves his hand magnanimously. "Tensions were running high, things happen."
"Yeah, but holy fire. I thought you were going to smite us on the spot."
"You're far too pretty to smite, Sammy," Gabriel says, and while Sam's brain stumbles slightly over 'pretty,' right now he's feeling too warm and relaxed to care.
The food gets there after that, which is probably good. Gabriel has something extravagant-looking and seafood-y that Sam doesn't know the name of, and the plate in front of him has what looks like a steak, but tastes too lean. "Is this venison?"
Gabriel nods. "I was wondering if it'd be too much like cannibalism since you're such a moose, but I figured you'd like something a little more simple."
Sam lets that one slide too. He's doing that a lot tonight. The food isgood, though, and Sam hadn't realized just how hungry he was; he'd burned through the slightly wilted salad he'd had for lunch hours ago.
The conversation shifts away from their last meeting after they start eating. Apparently Gabriel just wants to pretend it didn't happen, but Sam's having a little more difficult time ignoring it, not to mention how the encounter before that had gone. He can let a lot go, and he'd been willing to back when he'd thought they could get the Trickster on their side, but now that Gabriel's presumably back to playing games with him, he's not sure if he can.
Still, the combination of the food, the wine, the candlelight, and the soft murmur of voices around him are soothing, and Sam doesn't mind too much when Gabriel steers the conversation towards safe, simple topics, and he even lets himself be drawn into something close to an argument about whether dark or milk chocolate is better.
He's still worried about Dean, who's probably still passed out in their motel room, but Gabriel's the biggest threat here. Or maybe not. The whole time they've been here, Gabriel's treated him, like, well, a date. It's a little disconcerting, and Sam keeps waiting for the other shoe to drop. There's no way Gabriel would be this nice to him just for the sake of it.
They have dessert, of course, which passes in a whirl of chocolate, burnt sugar, and more wine. Sam's beginning to think maybe the planwasgetting him drunk, or possibly just so full he couldn't fight off Lucifer's demons. Either way, it's probably working.
After the last traces of whipped cream have been cleared off Sam's plate by Gabriel's quick fingers, they sit in silence for a few minutes, Sam digesting, and Gabriel just...watching.
"Do you want to go for a walk?" Gabriel asks finally, and Sam nods.
Outside, it's just cool enough to wake Sam up a little, though he still doesn't protest when Gabriel links his arm through Sam's. The city is everything Sam imagined it would be, the night sky lit up from the lights of the city center with a few bright stars shining through gaps in the clouds.
"I've been thinking about what you said," Gabriel says, thoughtfully, and Sam tenses. "I do like this world. Do you even know how boringHeaven is? Things with my family—they're complicated. Maybe your idiot brother's right. Maybe I am scared to stand up to them."
Sam considers this. "You can't just keep fighting for yourself. You've got to take a side—Michael's, Lucifer's, somebody's." He hesitates, then decides what the Hell. "You could take ours."
Gabriel stops walking. Their arms are still linked, and the change in momentum pulls Sam around so he's facing the angel. "And why would I want to do that?" he says, slowly, carefully.
There are a lot of answers Sam could give him. He could tell them that there's seven billion people on this planet that are all going to suffer if the apocalypse goes down, that he really doubts angels or demons could come up with good TV shows, that all the things Gabriel likes are going to go up in smoke. Absolutely none of them seem right.
Later, he'll blame his actions on the wine, or on the fact that they were in freaking Paris, but right now, all he's thinking about is how the reflections of the lights of the city in Gabriel's eyes make them look practically golden, how Gabriel's looking up at him and completely missing the point of what it's like to be human and not just be some otherworldly thing playing dress-up. All he wants is to make him understand, and there's nothing more human than this.
He bends down, letting Gabriel's arm fall to his side as Sam brings his hands up to cup the angel's face, thumbs tracing the edges of his cheekbones. Gabriel's lips are soft, and he lets out a quiet, surprised breath when Sam's mouth presses against his. It's not a long kiss, or a particularly skilled one, but Sam's lips are still tingling from the contact when he pulls back.
Gabriel blinks, speechless for once, which Sam takes as a complement. "That's cheating," he says finally, and he still sounds a little breathless.
Sam just raises his eyebrows at him.
"If you think all it'll take to win me over to your side are a few kisses, you're wrong."
Sam lets out a ragged breath, and starts walking again, and after a second, Gabriel follows, catching up easily despite his shorter legs.
"I mean, I'm flattered that you'd try, but while I may be easy, I'm not thateasy."
"I didn't think you would be," Sam admits. There's still a part of him that's trying to figure out exactly what he was trying to do. Sure, there'd been frustration there, but there'd been something else too, something that had nothing to do with the Apocalypse and angels and the end of the world and everything to do with the way Gabriel had looked in the light of the street lamps and how he'd felt warm next to Sam, a world away from Lucifer's coldness.
"Huh." Gabriel falls silent again, this time more contemplative than stunned. "Tell you what, you've had a long day and it's late. Why don't we put you to bed, and maybe I'll come by later when you're awake and more sober."
Sam nods, and Gabriel raises his hand, fingers poised to snap them away.
"This was actually kind of nice. You know, once I got over you abducting me and playing dress-up."
That gets a smirk.
"So, um, thanks, I guess?"
Gabriel reaches up, grabbing Sam's tie and pulling him down. This time, this kiss is harder, fiercer, and Sam gives under it, moaning softly against Gabriel's mouth. Then Gabriel's drawing back and carefully straightening Sam's collar. He smiles at Sam.
"See you later, Sammy."
He snaps his fingers, Sam's back in his motel room, alone except for the soft snores coming from the pile of blankets on the other bed. He almost wakes Dean up, but he feels bone-tired, and all that sounds appealing is getting the solid night's sleep he'd been anticipating before his surprise dinner date. It can wait for tomorrow. He peels off the clothes Gabriel had magicked him into and climbs into his cold bed.
When he wakes up the next morning, the room smells like chocolate.