"I swear, Gabriel," Lucifer warned. "If you kick my seat one more time, I'll kill you."
"Yeah, sure." Gabriel snorted and pushed his brother's seat once more for good measure.
Lucifer spun in his seat and grabbed Gabriel by his collar, only to be stopped by their eldest brother. "Lucifer!" Michael yelled. "Knock it off! I'm driving!"
Lucifer gruffly shoved his younger brother back into the seat and turned around. The youngest of the Novak brothers, Castiel, sat in silence as he watched his siblings quarrel. It was the first time he and his brothers sat together after a very long while. And it really had been a long while.
Trouble started some three years ago, when Lucifer had graduated from high school. The college he would be attending was already chosen, but not by Lucifer. The college was chosen by the eldest, Michael. The thing is, ever since they were children, the eldest Novak had a need to monitor his brothers, watching everything they did. So when he found out Lucifer wanted to enroll in a university in a whole new state, he was less than pleased. And after many long and exhausting arguments, Lucifer finally cracked. He packed his belongings, ignored his brother's threats and drove off into the night.
After endless messages had been left on Lucifer's phone, Michael did the only thing he could- go after his brother. He hopped on a plane to Kansas, leaving Castiel and Gabriel to fend for themselves. At the time, Castiel was sixteen and his brother just a year older.
Once he arrived, Michael tried everything to convince Lucifer to come back. But Lucifer could not be moved. He was staying, and if Michael couldn't accept it, he could go to hell. There was nothing Michael could do. In the end, he himself enrolled into the same university to keep an eye on Lucifer.
And so the two younger Novaks had not seen their brothers for three years, with only a few e-mails and post cards now and again. Then, just when Castiel finished his first year in college, a phone call came out of the blue. It was Michael. He wanted the two boys to catch a flight to Lawrence, Kansas immediately. He'd already arranged everything for them to transfer to the university there. When they asked why, he simply stated,
"I want the family back together."
And that is how they are ended up in the predicament they are in now; trapped in a car, on their way to their new campus.
"You know, if I'd known you'd be such a stick in the mud, Mike," Gabriel stated, "Cas and I would've stayed back home."
Michael growled from the driver's seat.
"Okay, can't take a joke," Gabriel muttered as he grinned at Castiel.
Cas meekly smiled back.
After another excruciating ten minutes, Michael announced, "We're here."
"So," Gabriel began as the four of them exited the car. "this is it? Gotta admit, not too shabby. Better than what I expected."
Castiel stared at the enormous campus in front of them. Gabriel was right, it was much better than their school back home. There were two buildings altogether; the middle which was the largest, was the main building. Castiel concluded the lectures would take place be there. To his imediate left, stood a smaller establishment. These were the dormitories as the large, metal plaque on the wall stated. A large amount of grass spread out across the front of both structures, peppered with benches and tables.
"All right, let's get a few things straight," Michael began, turning to his two youngest brothers. "You might be living in dorms, but I still want to see you at least once a week," he stated firmly, and when Gabe opened his mouth to protest, he added, unusually kind, "Just in the beginning. It doesn't even have to be for an hour. I just want to know if everything's all right and if you need help."
Gabriel and Castiel nodded.
"Can we go now?" Gabriel asked.
"No," Michael replied. He looked at Lucifer. "I know you're a senior now and you have a lot on your plate, but I want you to look after your brothers," he told him. "Do you understand?" he asked when Lucifer gave him a deadpan look.
"Yeah. I get it," Lucifer growled, glowering at Michael.
"Wait, you trust Lucifer with Castiel, but you don't trust me?! How is that fair?" Gabriel demanded.
"You're lucky they've even accepted to transfer you," Michael retorted. "From what I've heard, you blew up the entire west wing of your last school, didn't you?"
"It wasn't me!" Gabriel protested, although he grinned from ear to ear. "Honest!"
"Right," Lucifer mocked as the tires of a car came screeching to a halt.
The four brothers looked behind them and saw a Chevrolet Impala park at the other end of the lot. A young man climbed out, looking around and greeting a group of guys waiting for him. They exchanged high fives and laughed at something the guy had said.
Castiel looked up at Michael who's nostrils were flaring so much that Castiel was half-afraid his nose would combust.
"Who is that?" Castiel asked, watching the handsome boy strut across the campus.
"Dean Winchester." It was Lucifer who answered. "Michael hates him."
"Damn right I do," Michael growled.
"You know him? He's a kid," Gabriel pointed out.
"He's known all over town," Michael replied. "He's a cocky, arrogant bastard."
"Wow, way to put it lightly, Mike." Gabe chuckled.
"He's Cas' age, you know. They'll be in the same year," Lucifer spoke to Michael.
"Then you have my permission to kill him if he so much as touches Castiel," Michael answered and looked at Castiel. "You stay away from him, all right? That guy's more trouble than he's worth."
"All right. I'll remember that," Castiel replied, wishing he was back home even more than before.
"Okay, okay. Quit scaring him. Are you done now?" Gabriel asked Michael. "Can we finally go?"
"Yes," Michael answered, a smile growing on his face. "You can go."
"Awesome. See ya later then, bro," Gabriel called as he and Lucifer left to the dorms.
Michael turned to face Castiel.
Many people stated that, while Gabriel and Lucifer shared many devilish qualities, Castiel was the most like Michael. Well, not so much in the bossy department (Castiel was much less demanding than Michael), but he did share many of Michael's good features. He was smart, hard-working and loyal. Although Castiel disliked how cold Michael could sometimes be to his brothers, he still took pride in being told he was Michael's double. He was his eldest brother, after all, and no matter how unnerving he was at times, Castiel looked up to him.
"You going to be all right?" Michael asked.
"Yeah," Castiel replied. "I'll be fine."
"Good. You go to your brothers if you need anything or you call me, got it?"
"Yes," Castiel replied with a chuckle. "You worry too much, Michael."
"Yeah, I know," Michael said as he climbed back into the car. "Remember, stay away from Winchester," he added.
Castiel nodded mutely and he watched his brother pull out of the parking lot and drive away.
Well, he was lost. Castiel had been roaming the building for a good fifteen minutes now, and he still had no clue as to where his dorm was. He knew the room number and all, but the building was so goddamn big and confusing that Castiel contemplated punching the wall and leaving the school for good. He was just about to head back downstairs, when he heard someone call out at the other end of the hall.
Castiel turned around in search of the voice. It belonged to a young man, who waved and headed down the hall towards Castiel.
"You look a bit lost," the man told him.
"Yeah, I am," Castiel replied. "You wouldn't happen to know where room 2-21 is, do you?"
"I do." He grinned broadly. "It's my dorm."
Castiel nodded. "Oh."
"Come on, it's this way," the guy stated.
The two of them set off into the maze of corridors.
"Are you my new room mate, then?" he asked happily.
"I suppose so," Castiel replied with a smile.
"Thank God." He sighed. "The bloke I had last year was a complete arse."
Castiel stayed silent.
"I'm Balthazar, by the way," he stated, holding out his hand as they walked.
"Castiel Novak," Cas responded and shook Balthazar's hand.
"Novak, eh?" Balthazar asked.
"Yes. Why do you ask?"
"Your brother Lucifer has quite the reputation around here." Balthazar stopped in front of the last door in the hall. He took out his keys, unlocked and pushed the door open. "Home, sweet home," he joked as the two of them stepped inside. "Well, make yourself comfortable. Classes start tomorrow so enjoy your last day of freedom," Balthazar told Castiel before he disappeared into the hall.
Castiel set down his backpack on the table and left his suitcase on the floor. He dropped onto the spare bed by the window and dozed off, exhausted and pleased that the day hadn't gone as bad as he expected.