LEAVE THE DOOR OPEN, JUST A LITTLE BIT
Pairing: Castiel/Dean Winchester
Warnings: References to m/m sex, mild language
Disclaimer: Supernatural belongs to Eric Kripke and various other people/studios. I own nothing but the plot and make no money from this story.
Castiel liked sleeping with his bedroom door open, just slightly, to keep the nightmares at bay. He didn't like the all encompassing dark that came with nightfall, not since he'd mostly turned human. Staying away from Heaven over a long period of time had drained most of his abilities. He could still heal, could still smite demons, and was quicker, stronger, than any human.
But when he got injured badly, he mostly stayed that way. Like a knife to the shoulder; that took more than a few seconds to heal. Smaller wounds took hours, deeper ones days. He'd broken his arm shortly after most of his "angel mojo" (as the boys called it) had leaked away, and had been stuck at home (or the "batcave") for five days on bed rest.
Despite his abilities, Castiel was mostly human theses days. He didn't mind too much. His feelings, ones that had started surfacing after pulling Dean from Perdition, were stronger, more encompassing. Things like hate, fear, joy, pleasure, all of that was much, much stronger now.
The many downsides included Castiel having to wash his clothes and himself; he couldn't just grace-away the grime, or smooth down and clean his clothing after wearing the same outfit for weeks on end. It hadn't been fun, learning the uses of the many different cream-type liquids that humans used to keep themselves clean. Nor had his foray into the laundry, where Dean laughed himself stupid when Castiel yelped after facing the washing machine.
Sam took over cleaning Castiel's clothes after that, much to the angel's relief.
Eating was fine. Though when in his human vessel he hadn't had to eat, Castiel had often enjoyed nibbling on various foods or downing some liquids. Some foods were delicious, and he could appreciate the fine tastes of alcoholic beverages. He wouldn't be able to drink a liquor store again without dying, but three bottles of fine scotch had Castiel slumped over the sofa, dead to the world. Hangovers, as Dean had mentioned on more than one occasion, were a bitch.
Sleeping... Castiel didn't like sleep. It was the very worse thing about becoming mostly human. His body wore itself out and Castiel would feel lethargic, exhausted. The first time it had happened, Dean had carried him to his bedroom, removed his shoes and sweater (Castiel liked sweaters) and pulled the covers over him, leaving him to sleep it off.
When he woke, Castiel was literally terrified. He'd passed out after battle before, or after exhausting himself and his grace, but never after simply staying awake for three days. His body hurt, his head was fuzzy, and his dreams- angels didn't dream, and Castiel found the experience terrifying- had been horrible; all blood, war, Dean dying and Sam going back to demon blood and Crowley sinking his teeth in and Lucifer playing with him in Hell.
Castiel had screamed. Honest to his Father screamed until his voice was raw, until Dean and Sam came running, until Dean wrapped his strong arms around the fallen angel and held him as he cried.
Crying was disgusting. But Castiel would admit that it helped. He soiled his shirt, and Dean's, as well as his cheeks and neck. Dean didn't seem bothered- how could he be when he regularly had blood and guts all over his body?- but Castiel found it disgusting. His throat and nose closed up, he felt sticky and awful, and his eyes hurt.
But Dean just patted his messy brown hair- haircuts, another awful thing about being human; Castiel could not sport Sam's "L'Oréal look", as Dean called it- pulled Castiel from bed, and made him walk downstairs.
Castiel was placed on the sofa and Dean sat beside him, while Sam disappeared into the kitchen and started banging around making something.
Dean didn't say anything, just held his arm out and manoeuvred Castiel until the angel was curled up beside him, his legs tucked up to his chest, and Dean's arm a warm and solid across his shoulders.
When Sam returned it was with a steaming mug of what Castiel identified as hot chocolate by the sweet scent. It had been revealed, some weeks previously, that Castiel had what Dean and Sam called a "sweet tooth". Much like his brother, Gabriel (Castiel didn't like talking about Gabriel), Castiel could gorge himself on anything sweet. But chocolate was his favourite, the only indulgence Dean and Sam let him get away with. Castiel had the tendency to eat candy non-stop until he made himself sick. But chocolate... the Winchester brothers let Castiel have as much chocolate as he wanted.
So Castiel eagerly took the mug, remembering at the last second to pace himself and blow across the top. Burning his mouth wasn't much fun the first time, and Castiel didn't want a repeat performance.
Sam flicked on the television as Castiel sipped his chocolate, and settled into the armchair across from his brother and the angel.
They sat in silence as they watched awful television; Castiel drinking his chocolate, Dean and Sam just staring. The warm liquid settled nicely in Castiel's stomach, and he found himself relaxing. When the mug was finished he sighed and Dean plucked it from his fingers, set it on the coffee table, and leaned back. His arm tightened around Castiel until the angel snuggled deeper into his side.
Soon Sam went back to bed, once he was sure Castiel was okay. He and Dean were left alone, just staring at the TV, until Castiel's eyes began to droop.
'Feel okay now?' Dean asked suddenly, his voice gruff but soft.
Castiel nodded and felt his forehead brush Dean's cheek.
'You ever wanna talk...' Dean hummed.
Castiel knew; he could talk to Dean about anything. Even if the hunter didn't understand, he'd listen. He'd had the patience of a saint, him and Sam both, when first introducing Castiel to being a human. And they still helped him a lot. Castiel was thankful he had the Winchesters to guide him through being human. He didn't think anyone else would have the patience to explain what a toaster was fourteen times in six days. Castiel still didn't understand, but Sam was happy to make him toast for breakfast, smiling at the confused look on Castiel's face.
'I know,' Castiel finally said and Dean nodded.
'Back to bed?' the hunter asked. Castiel tensed slightly and Dean said, 'Come on, I have an idea.'
Castiel allowed himself to be pushed to his feet and watched as Dean turned the television off. He was then led upstairs, where Dean paused before his own bedroom door.
Dean's bedroom was directly opposite Castiel's in the living quarters. Sam was further down the hall, not that Castiel minded. He liked being close to Dean.
Dean went into his bedroom and started moving about. Curious, Castiel peeked his head around the door. Dean was dragging the rather small bed- he kept saying he would get a new one, but Castiel knew how lazy his human was- across the room, and Castiel just watched in confusion until Dean had stopped.
The bed was now in the middle of the room and if Dean laid down he'd be able to look across the hall directly into Castiel's room.
'Your turn,' Dean said and walked out. Castiel followed into his own bedroom and watched as Dean did the same; moved his bed, never asking for help. When he was done he turned to Castiel. 'Lay down.'
Castiel did as asked. The sheets were cold, sweat-soaked, and Castiel moved the blanket until it covered the worse spots. He'd have to ask Sam to change the sheets- doing so himself was not on Castiel's list of skills.
Dean nodded, smiled, and said, 'Wait here.'
Again Castiel did as asked, rolling over to watch the hunter move back into his own room. Dean laid down and turned onto his side. It was dark, but Castiel had maintained his better eyesight.
Dean, however, was still human and said, 'Turn your lamp on?'
Castiel did and when he turned back Dean was smiling at him.
'Feel better?' he asked.
Castiel nodded. 'I can see you,' he said. 'It makes me feel better.'
Dean grinned. 'See? Now I can watch over you, and your nightmares won't be as bad. If you have 'em I can get up and calm you down. Or you can get up and come to me.'
Castiel smiled. He felt better already, just being able to see Dean. Knowing he was there made the lethargy he'd been pushing back since waking hit home, and he yawned.
'Go to sleep, Cas,' Dean said. 'I'm right here.'
So Castiel did as asked, knowing Dean was there if he needed him.
It became a common practice. If Dean went to bed at the same time as Castiel, he'd make sure his door was open. Castiel did the same. Castiel always kept his bedroom door open, even if Dean was up late watching television, or working on the Impala. He liked hearing the soft voices of Dean, Sam, or the television echoing down the hallway and into his room. He liked hearing Dean's cursing, banging, and the radio bouncing through the house from the garage. He liked being able to see the flickering lights from Sam's room, or the kitchen, the living room, if he was lying in bed, alone.
It kept the nightmares to a minimum. Unfortunately Castiel had seen and done a lot of horrible things in his very long life. And nothing could keep them back forever. So when Castiel found himself twisting in the sheets, screaming at invisible demons his subconscious created, at memories he was forced to re-live, it wasn't long before Dean came bounding through. He would hug Castiel, shush him, stroke his back and kiss his forehead until Castiel stopped shaking, stopped sobbing.
With Sam it was different. If he heard Castiel shouting, sobbing, crying out for help, he'd wake the angel before going to get his brother. And Dean would come in, soothe Castiel, and stay until the angel fell asleep once more.
One night, when the dreams were so horrible Castiel was gasping for breath and crying, Castiel asked Dean to stay. The hunter looked at him before kicking his boots off, stripping from his jeans, and climbing into bed.
He held Castiel all night and Castiel woke up with his arms wrapped around Dean, the man's own around his waist. It was nice; more than nice, really. Castiel loved it.
Neither mentioned it. Not even Sam when he'd walked past and found them curled around each other.
It happened more and more until, when Dean went to sleep, Castiel climbed out of his bed, padded across the hall, and crawled under Dean's blankets. Dean just opened his arms and let Castiel snuggle in. He'd never admit it- it would go against his "manly" visage. But he let him, and that was good enough for Castiel.
Their relationship changed slowly, as it always had. Hugs turned to petting, stroking. Warm breath against necks turned into warm breath against lips, shared as they moved against each other. Thin sweats, boxers and cotton t-shirts turned into nothing at all as they slid together, sweat clinging to their bodies, both crying out into the cold night air, or the warm morning sun.
Sam didn't say anything but he saw it; he watched as Castiel started snuggling into Dean during the day, or perched himself on a work bench to watch Dean work on the Impala; he didn't say anything when Dean wrapped his arms around Castiel in the morning, planting a kiss against his cheek, or when Dean would sprawl himself across the couch and Castiel, head in the angel's lap, a goofy grin on his face.
He just smiled, threw the couple a look that said finally, and went off to do his own thing when Dean or Castiel became handsy with the other.
Shared food and drink, showers and beds, it was all a natural progression of their bond. Neither Dean nor Castiel needed words or labels to describe what they were to each other, because they knew, and Sam did too. Others noticed when they worked jobs, and words were said, eyebrows cocked, but Dean would just laugh and kiss Castiel on the cheek, and Castiel would blush and avoid eye contact.
Their bedrooms became each others. They still had separate spaces, because sometimes they needed space to be alone, to do their own thing. But every night they shared a bed, whether Dean's or Castiel's. It didn't matter as long as they were together.
They only shut the door when Sam yelled at them to keep it down.
But when they were done, Dean would climb out of bed, in all his naked glory, and open the door just a crack, because he knew Castiel felt better.
And Castiel would smile, because Dean knew him so well.
They'd cuddle together under the sheets, eyes closed, a beam creaking or an insect scuttling, and Castiel knew that Dean would be there to keep the nightmares at bay.
Author's Note: My first Supernatural fic and it's about... I don't even know. Like I've always said, my muse makes little sense most of the time. I hope you enjoyed... at least a little bit. I just suddenly felt compelled to write this last night when I had to keep my door open for my dog. When I was a kid I'd keep my bedroom door open so I could hear when my dad got home from work, and I'd know if he was there in the morning or if he'd worked really late.